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5 Feb, 2008 08:19

Ukraine parliament opens amid opposition protests

This year's second session of Ukraine’s parliament, the Supreme Rada, has opened despite attempts by opposition members to obstruct the meeting. Meanwhile President Yushchenko’s annual speech has been postponed due to the delay.

Members of the ruling coalition in Ukraine's parliament blocked the podium to prevent the opposition from disrupting the meeting.

Members of the opposition Party of Regions hung anti-NATO placards inside the chamber.

They demanded that the parliament discussed Ukraine's plans to join the military bloc before the session opened.