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October 2, 2007

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
07KYIV2508 2007-10-02 12:46 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Kyiv

DE RUEHKV #2508/01 2751246
P 021246Z OCT 07

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 KYIV 002508 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/02/2017 
REF: KYIV 2501 
KYIV 00002508  001.2 OF 003 
Classified By: Ambassador for reasons 1.4(b,d). 
1. (C) Summary.  As votes continued to trickle into the 
Central Election Commission on October 2, parties remained 
for the most part constrained, holding off on both court 
challenges and coalition negotiations until the final count 
is announced.  With more than 97 percent of the vote counted 
by 5:30 pm Kyiv time, the two orange parties -- Our 
Ukraine-People's Self Defense (OU-PSD) and Bloc Yuliya 
Tymoshenko (BYuT) -- still had a four vote majority and the 
Socialists had dropped below the three-percent threshold, 
probably for good.  Ten District Election Commissions (DECs) 
had still not sent their results to the CEC, six of them in 
eastern and southern Ukraine and two in Kyiv.  The CEC 
announced that it would reach 100 percent results on October 
3, but the delays in the counting are starting to raise 
concerns.  Yushchenko called on law enforcement bodies to 
investigate the hold-up and members of BYuT and OU claimed it 
was an effort by some political forces to get the Socialists 
into the Rada, which would significantly change the outcome 
of seat allocations.  Despite the delays and concerns, 
international evaluations of the elections have been that the 
campaign was free and the vote competitive, although the OSCE 
was critical of the poorly put-together voter lists as 
disenfranchising voters.  The Embassy issued a short press 
statement October 1 echoing the OSCE's observations and 
proposes a Washington statement congratulating Ukraine on a 
mostly fair and competitive election once the complete 
preliminary results are tallied.  End summary. 
Slow Count 
2. (SBU) There are still delays in a number of DECs -- the 
worst offenders are in Odesa and Simferopol in Crimea, where 
reporting is still under 50 percent.  In total, 9 DECs are 
still under 80 percent reporting, most of them in the east 
and south and two in Kyiv city.  The afternoon of October 1, 
as incoming results slowed to a trickle, President Yushchenko 
appealed to the Prosecutor General's Office (PGO) and law 
enforcement agencies to investigate why some DECs in Donetsk, 
Luhansk, Crimea, and Odesa were so slow to report. 
Tymoshenko also made a public appeal to the CEC and law 
enforcement to ensure that those four oblasts did not falsify 
results.  Head of the Lytvyn Bloc's campaign, Viktor 
Pylypyshyn, complained at a press conference that Kyiv city 
was taking too long to count.  Number 3 on the BYuT list 
Mykola Tomenko said at a press conference that BYuT was 
concerned that the hold-ups were due to attempts to alter the 
missing results in favor of the Socialists (SPU) to get them 
over the three-percent threshold.  He said SPU was short 
60,000 votes.  OU-PSD legal eagle Onishchuk held a press 
conference October 2 and echoed Tomenko's complaint. 
3. (C) Comment.  If the SPU got into the Rada, BYuT and 
OU-PSD alone would not be able to form a coalition.  However, 
SPU may have trouble getting enough votes to get back over 
the threshold.  The delays may have been an effort by both 
Regions and BYuT to sit on final vote tallies in stronghold 
areas, while they waited to see what the final outcome looks 
like.  End comment. 
Few Court Challenges So Far 
4. (SBU) Political parties have been restrained so far in 
contesting election results in court -- we had expected that 
a slew of court cases filed by one party could cause major 
delays in announcing the results -- although some cases were 
filed on election day.  The Donetsk oblast administration 
announced on October 1 that 27 election-related lawsuits have 
been filed in the Donetsk local courts, and the PGO said it 
was investigating 85 election-related claims filed since 
September 29; as a result, the PGO has opened four criminal 
cases thus far.  (Note.  Due to poor funding and lack of 
attention, many local courts do not post online or make 
public a list of ongoing court cases, making it difficult to 
determine the actual number of election-related cases that 
have been filed. End note.)  BYuT deputy leader Turchynov 
said at an October 1 press conference that BYuT will appeal 
the election results in some polling stations in Luhansk and 
Donetsk.  (Note.  Due to a change in the election law, 
parties can only have declared invalid the results of 
individual polling stations.  In past elections, whole DECs 
could be challenged. End note.) 
5. (SBU) In the first court ruling to be announced, the 
Luhansk administrative court upheld OU-PSD's complaint, filed 
KYIV 00002508  002.2 OF 003 
September 30, that DEC 109 (Severodonetsk) had allowed 6,000 
people to vote illegally by not removing them from voter 
lists in compliance with the Border Guard rule.  However, 
there was no indication as to whether the court decision 
meant those 6,000 votes would be thrown out. 
First Forays into Coalition Talks 
6. (C) While waiting for the CE
C to finish the vote count, 
all parties have also been restrained in discussing possible 
coalitions, although they are sending out feelers.  Regions 
faction leader Bohatyreva said at an October 1 rally that she 
hoped Yushchenko would turn to Regions as the top vote-getter 
to form a coalition.  Lutsenko and Tymoshenko gave a press 
conference on Channel 5 on October 1, during which Lutsenko 
said OU-PSD would support Tymoshenko as PM.  Tymoshenko said 
she planned to meet Yushchenko to discuss forming a 
coalition.  OU leader Kyrylenko has been tapped by Yushchenko 
to lead negotiations with Tymoshenko. 
7.  (C) Deputy Head of the Presidential Secretariat Chaliy 
told the Ambassador October 2 that the OU-PSD team is 
planning its next move.  He said that with 226 seats for 
Orange a distinct possibility, OU was reaching out to 
Lytvyn's party.  Lytvyn met with Baloha on October 1 and 
might meet with Yushchenko soon.  Chaliy also mentioned that 
the Presidential Administration team was still thinking about 
finding a way to bring Regions in, and that they were talking 
to Regions' campaign head Kolesnikov.  According to Chaliy, 
President Yushchenko had hosted a party for OU-PSD leadership 
the day after the election.  It was clear that some, 
including Lutsenko, FM Yatsenyuk and Defense Minister 
Hrytsenko were open to some form of broad coalition, but 
Kyrylenko and Katerynchuk were adamantly opposed. 
Meeting on the Maidan 
8. (SBU) Regions held a rally on the Maidan on the evening of 
October 1.  It seemed to have been organized to be the basis 
of a protest if the elections had gone badly (or presumably a 
celebration if they had gone better for Regions).  However, 
with the preliminary results not yet complete with Regions 
leading but orange likely to get a majority, the event was 
low-key.  PM Yanukovych, after going back and forth on 
whether he would attend, did show up and gave a speech to 
5,000-6,000 supporters.  He said that Regions, as the 
first-past-the-post party, should have the first shot at 
forming a coalition, as was the norm, he argued, in other 
democratic countries.  He also said that there would not be 
another Rada election for five years, as everyone was sick of 
voting.  Other party leaders, including Bohatyreva, Mykhaylo 
Chechetov, Inna Bohoslovska, Nestor Shufrych, and Vasyl 
Kysylev also attended. 
International Opinion: Elections Were Competitive 
--------------------------------------------- ---- 
9. (SBU) While avoiding the use of the term "free and fair", 
a joint statement from OSCE/ODIHR, PACE, OSCE PA, NATO PA, 
and the European Parliament called the elections "open and 
competitive."  They noted, much as U.S. observers have, that 
the campaign was open, the media operated freely, and that 
problems on voting day were more due to disorganization than 
systematic attempts at fraud.  They also said the elections 
were in line with OSCE and COE commitments and other 
international standards for democratic elections.  They did, 
however, note their concerns with the voter lists and the 
requirement for the Border Guards to eliminate voters out of 
the country 72 hours before the election from the voter lists 
as possible disenfranchisement.  The international 
organizations, however, withheld final evaluation pending 
possible court challenges and final vote counts. 
10. (SBU)  In addition, EU foreign policy czar Javier Solana 
made a positive statement about the conduct of the elections; 
the German FM said the elections were generally fair and 
transparent and met international standards.  Russian Foreign 
Minister Lavrov said the elections allowed for the free 
expression of will.  Adrian Severin, head of the EP's 
observation mission, said the election results could not be 
questioned because they were generally held in line with 
European standards.  Once the preliminary results are 
published by the CEC, we believe that it would be useful for 
Washington to weigh in with a similar statement in order to 
positively note Ukraine's continued progress in democratic 
11. (U) Visit Embassy Kyiv's classified website: 
KYIV 00002508  003.2 OF 003 




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