Chirac applauds Yushchenko’s win in Ukraine

7th January 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Jan 7 (AFP) - French President Jacques Chirac has congratulated the pro-Western candidate Viktor Yushchenko on his election win in Ukraine, hailing a "victory for democracy and the rule of law" in a message made public Friday.

PARIS, Jan 7 (AFP) - French President Jacques Chirac has congratulated the pro-Western candidate Viktor Yushchenko on his election win in Ukraine, hailing a "victory for democracy and the rule of law" in a message made public Friday.

"I am very happy to send you my warmest and most sincere congratulations," Chirac wrote in a message to Yushchenko dated January 6.

"Rest assured that France has weighed the importance of the December 26 election, both for Ukraine and for Europe. I hope this election will continue to reinforce the ties binding all the people of our continent," he added.

"Beyond your personal victory, I salute a victory for democracy and the rule of law, in accordance with the aspirations of the Ukrainian people, expressed strongly but peacefully during these past few weeks," Chirac wrote.

"I hail your courage and determination, which allowed you to endure the hardships and make this victory possible," the French leader concluded.

Yushchenko defeated former prime minister Viktor Yanukovich in the December26 rematch, organized after Ukraine's supreme court annulled the November 21 run-off poll due to widespread fraud.

According to preliminary results, Yushchenko won the December 26 election with 52 percent of the vote compared with Yanukovich's 41 percent, a difference of more than 2.2 million ballots on a turnout of 77 percent.

The supreme court paved the way for Yushchenko's inauguration by throwing out the first of two likely challenges filed by Yanukovich.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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