- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 11, 2005

UKRAINE

Panel declares Yushchenko winner

KIEV — Ukraine’s Central Election Commission yesterday declared Western-leaning reformer Viktor Yushchenko the winner of the presidential election over Kremlin-favored Viktor Yanukovych, whose camp immediately vowed to appeal the results to the Supreme Court.

The commission announced that the final official tally of the Dec. 26 vote — which was a rerun of the Nov. 21 election that was annulled because of fraud — showed Mr. Yushchenko with 51.99 percent of the votes and Mr. Yanukovych with 44.2 percent.

In Washington, a State Department official said the United States would not formally congratulate Mr. Yushchenko until any last-ditch complaints by Mr. Yanukovych had been dealt with by Ukraine’s courts.

Meanwhile, outgoing President Leonid Kuchma yesterday ordered Ukraine’s 1,600 troops home from Iraq within six months after a blast killed eight Ukrainian soldiers and one from Kazakhstan on Sunday.

TAIWAN

China proposes direct New Year flights

BEIJING — China agreed yesterday to allow direct charter flights with Taiwan during the Lunar New Year holiday in February, said visiting opposition legislators from the island.

Under the plan, Chinese planes would land on Taiwanese soil during the holiday, which begins Feb. 9, without having to make stopovers in Hong Kong or Macau, the lawmakers from Taiwan’s main opposition Nationalist Party said after a meeting with Minister of Taiwan Affairs Chen Yunlin.

BRITAIN

Soldier on trial over prisoner abuse

BERGEN, Germany — A British soldier accused of abusing Iraqis in his custody was brought before a court-martial at a military base in Germany yesterday, the first such case against a British service member to come to trial.

Fusilier Gary Bartlam, 20, is one of four soldiers from the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers charged after photos surfaced showing their purported mistreatment of Iraqis.

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