The midnight of 31 December 2001 will mark the beginning of a new parliamentary election campaign in Ukraine, Chairman of the Ukrainian Central Election Commission Mikhail Ryabets told a press conference in Kiev on Sunday. According to him, in compliance with the Ukrainian legislation, a special session of Ukraine's Central Election Commission adopted a resolution "On Commencing the Campaign for Election of Ukrainian People's Deputies Scheduled for 31 March, 2002". Two hundred and twenty-five one-mandate constituencies have been already set up throughout the country for that purpose, with the Central Election Commission duly defining the constituencies' borders and the number of voters as well as assigning each constituency an appropriate number. Each of the constituencies incorporates approximately 170,000 voters. As was reported earlier, 225 deputies to the Ukrainian Supreme Assembly are to be elected in one-mandate constituencies, with another 225 deputies receiving their mandates as appointees of the political parties, unions and movements on the basis of the ballots respectively cast in favour of the latter. In all, Ukraine's Supreme Assembly will consist of 450 people's deputies.
Russian small missile ships - the Grad Sviyazhsk and the Great Ustyug - set off for a mission to the Mediterranean Sea