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Zelenskiy's Decree On Disbanding Ukrainian Parliament Enters Into Force

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy

KYIV – A decree issued by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelenskiy on disbanding parliament and holding snap elections in July has taken effect.

The decree was published on May 23 in the Uryadoviy Kuryer (Government's Courier) newspaper, which under Ukrainian law means the decree has entered into force.

After announcing in his May 20 inaugural address that he would dissolve parliament, Zelenskiy made it official with the decree the following day and declared that a new parliament will be elected on July 21.

He has called for that election to be held based entirely on voting for parties, rather than single candidates, arguing that the current system in which some seats are filled in contests between individual candidates favors corruption.

But at an emergency session of the Verkhovna Rada on May 22, only 92 lawmakers voted to discuss that proposal -- far short of the majority, 226 votes, needed to put it on the agenda.

Lawmakers also voted not to put another proposal from Zelenskiy, which would change the rules for state purchases during election campaigns, on the agenda.

The votes could point to a standoff between lawmakers and Zelenskiy, a political novice who has no formal support in the current parliament. The next parliament session is scheduled for May 28.

The next parliamentary elections were scheduled for October 27.