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21 April, 00:00
Viktor Zamiatin, The Day

Last Friday the Board of the Foreign Ministry saw off ex-Minister Hennady Udovenko to take his seat in Parliament and greeted his successor, Borys Tarasiuk.

Mr. Udovenko was thanked for his effective performance by President Kuchma and was awarded the order of Yaroslav the Wise, fifth degree. The Central Election Committee, in a courteous gesture, handed him a temporary identification card as People’s Deputy. German Foreign Minister Klaus Kinckel sent a telegram stating that Mr. Udovenko’s personal contribution was very instrumental in developing Ukrainian-German friendship.

According to Mr. Udovenko, Mr. Tarasiuk has been preparing for the post since 1995, when appointed Ambassador to Brussels. “Changes are needed in the foreign political department,” stressed Mr. Udovenko, adding he was glad at the change being made now.

“These changes do not mean that anything is being changed in Ukraine’s foreign political course,” announced Premier Pustovoitenko. “It is just that a certain principle of succession must be observed here. Mr. Tarasiuk’s appointment is the first of the changes to take place in the government shortly.”

Before the appointment was officially made, Tarasiuk admitted he was not sure how to respond to it, with joy or with apprehension, because he would have to run a household that was in anything but good order.

Europe knows Mr. Tarasiuk as an energetic career diplomat, and he will perhaps serve his role well as minister, especially considering that it will be up to him to improve Ukraine’s somewhat dampened international image.


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