After two years of bitter wrangling between president and parliament, and following an all-night debate, the Ukrainian parliament this morning adopted a new constitution. Parliament acted after President Leonid Kuchma threatened to hold a national referendum on the issue. The version adopted today is a clear victory for Kuchma: it creates a strong presidency and legalizes private property. Ukrainian is described as the state language but provision is made for the use of other languages, such as Russian and Crimean Tatar, in places where the majority of the population is not Ukrainian-speaking. (BBC World Service, June 28) Until now, Ukraine was the only post-Soviet state without a new constitution.
Moldovan Political-Military Crisis Erupts.