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Viktor Yushchenko's proposal that Yulia Timoshenko resign at their meeting with oil producers on May 19 had not looked like a conflict between the president and premier
Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko's proposal that Prime Minister Yulia Timoshenko resign at their meeting with oil producers on May 19 had not looked like a conflict between the president and premier, said an oil company executive. Pyotr Miroshnikov, the chief of Alyans Ukraina oil company, attended the meeting that was convened to try to resolve the current oil crisis in Ukraine and heard the president propose that the premier resign, the news that was broken by the Zerkalo Nedeli newspaper. "The president did say 'you can resign if you don't like something,' but he did not really mean that," said Miroshnikov. Miroshnikov said the words had not sparked off some abnormal reaction from oil producers since it had been "just a conversation." Presidential press secretary Irina Gerashchenko said the president's words had been misinterpreted. President Yushchenko issued a comment, giving a positive assessment to the government's performance. "Nobody will be able to affect the team's unity or split it in any circumstances," said the president. Timoshenko described the newspaper's report as "political rumors and gossip." The influential Ukrainian daily, Zerkalo Nedeli, wrote about a conflict between Yushchenko and Timoshenko and the former's proposal to the premier to step down in an article on May 21. The author said the information had been confirmed by four persons who had attended the meeting.
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