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Ukraine Appoints Yushchenko Ally As Foreign Minister

Petro Poroshenko
KYIV (Reuters) -- Ukraine's parliament has approved Petro Poroshenko, an ally of President Viktor Yushchenko and a senior central bank official, as foreign minister.

The ex-Soviet country has been without a foreign minister since March when parliament sacked Volodymyr Ohryzko after a row with Prime Minister Yuliya Tymoshenko.

The position of foreign minister is one of two cabinet posts proposed directly by the president.

Improvement of poor relations with former Soviet master Russia remains a foreign policy priority.

Yushchenko and Tymoshenko are embroiled in a power struggle ahead of a January 17 presidential election in which both are expected to run.