Leonid Chernovetsky, by obtaining about 36% of votes cast, has won a handsome victory in the Kyiv mayoral elections. His two nearest opponents, BYuT's Oleksandr Turchynov and boxer Vitaliy Klychko received about 18% each. There's no two ways about this - for Yulia Tymoshenko and for BYuT, who forced the early elections, the result is a major set-back. There will, no doubt, be much political gloating in the Chernovetsky camp.
Other 'democratic' candidates faired badly too, and it looks as if the PoR candidate will barely achieve 3% of the votes.
As to the future of Ukraine's national politics, one commentator says, "..it is important on how Party of Regions [now] conducts itself. If it decides it is necessary to support Yushchenko in order to 'finish off' Tymoshenko, they could be next [in power]. If it makes the right choice, by Autumn we will have political stability."
Last Friday Yulia Tymoshenko attended a heads of CIS conference in Minsk and had a meeting with Russian premier Vladimir Putin. There are reports she may agree to Russia's Black Sea fleet continuing to use its naval base on the Crimean peninsula after 2017, and may 'back pedal' on Ukraine's entry into NATO in exchange for Putin's support in the next presidential elections in Ukraine. This was part of a discussion on an acceptable price for Russian gas...