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26 Feb, 2014 18:38

Maidan protesters announce line-up of Ukrainian Cabinet, propose Yatsenyuk for PM

Protesters in Kiev’s Maidan have announced a new government line-up and asked parliament to approve the candidatures. The Verkhovna Rada is expected to vote on the new cabinet members on Thursday.

Opposition leader Arseny Yatsenyuk, a member of the Batkivshchina (Fatherland) Party, has been suggested for the post of prime minister.

The Cabinet line-up was announced from the stage of central Kiev’s Independence Square on Wednesday evening as protesters and their leaders gathered for a popular assembly, “veche.”

Boris Tarasyuk, 65, also of the Fatherland party, was proposed for the seat of deputy premier in charge of European integration. The pro-Western politician served as Ukraine’s Foreign Minister between 1998 and 2000 and, then again from February 2005 till January 2007.

People listen to speeches on Independence square in Kiev to hear the line-up of the new Ukranian cabinet on February 26, 2014. (AFP Photo / Louisa Gouliamaki)

The Maidan gathering wants Andrey Parubiy, 43, to head the country’s National Security and Defense Council. A deputy for Fatherland party, he actively participated both in the recent uprising and in the Orange Revolution. Parubiy began his political career back in the late '80s, when he headed a nationalist youth organization.

A leader of the radical group Pravy Sektor (Right Sector), Dmitry Yarosh was reportedly proposed as the council’s deputy head. However, he has so far not accepted the offer.

Aleksandr Shlapak was suggested to head the Finance Ministry. He occupied the post between July 2001 and August 2002. Fatherland’s MP Pavel Petrenko may become Justice Minister and Pavel Sheremeta - Ukraine’s Economy Minister.

Andrey Deshchitsa, a career diplomat, is a possible foreign minister. The acting interior minister, Fatherland MP and public figure Arsen Avakov, may retain the post as the head of the ministry.

Former Energy Minister Yury Prodan, who occupied the post in Yulia Tymoshenko’s government, may also come back to the cabinet as head of the Fuel and Energy Ministry.

According to the opposition's estimates, about 20,000 people gathered on Kiev’s Maidan for the meeting. They said they will not leave the square – which has been the main site of the months-long protest – unless all their demands are fulfilled, reports Itar-Tass.

“Now you [politicians] are under close public control. If you detach from the people, you will face the same fate as the previous government,” protesters announced from the stage.

The demonstrators are set to stay there until presidential elections scheduled for May 25. In case of a run-off – until June 15.

Acting President of Ukraine Aleksandr Turchinov announced his intention to resign after the normalization of the situation in the country.

"Once we are able to normalize the situation in the country within a month, restore the power, I will resign as a man who has done his duty,"
Turchinov said, speaking from the stage on Maidan’s Square.

He also warned, that the current composition of the Rada, if approved by the body on Thursday, may not last long.

"The new government will be forced to make unpopular decisions, so it is possible that in a few months it will get burned," the acting president said, adding that the country should also hold parliamentary elections after the presidential race.