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Ukraine Court Reviews Yanukovych's Appeal

Yanukovych has doubts about his initiative's success (file photo) 17 January 2005 -- Ukraine's Supreme Court today started a review of what appears to be the last appeal by former prime minister Viktor Yanukovych challenging his presidential runoff loss to rival Viktor Yushchenko.

At a news conference in Kyiv, Yanukovych expressed doubt today that he will win an annulment of the 26 December election, which he says was marred by widespread fraud.

"All I asked the Supreme Court for is an objective attitude and a just and transparent court procedure with the participation of the media," Yanukovych said. "But as I found out, transparency, objectivity, and justice are used in Ukraine selectively and only in favor of a few people."

The Supreme Court -- which has already rejected several of Yanukovych's appeals -- is expected to issue its decision by 21 January. The court ordered a rerun of a presidential poll in November -- won by Yanukovych -- after it ruled the election was marred by fraud.

Yushchenko cannot be sworn into office until Yanukovych exhausts his appeals.