Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych resigned today, making a grudging admission that he was unlikely to reverse the presidential election victory of his rival and saying he could not work under him.

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KIEV, Ukraine — Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych resigned today, making a grudging admission that he was unlikely to reverse the presidential election victory of his rival and saying he could not work under him.


Vanukovych announced his move in a televised New Year’s Eve address, saying he would push ahead with his appeal to the Supreme Court against the election results that showed pro-Western reformer Viktor Yushchenko as the winner — though he admitted it was likely futile.


“We are still fighting, but I don’t have much hope,” Yanukovych said


“I have made the decision to submit my formal resignation,” he said. It appeared his resignation was effective immediately.


“I believe it is impossible to have any position in a state that is ruled by such officials,” Yanukovych said, referring to Yushchenko and his followers. “This is my personal position.”


Election officials Thursday rejected Yanukovych’s appeal of Sunday’s vote, saying he had not proved there were mass violations. Yanukovych’s campaign team vowed to take its appeal to the Supreme Court.


Sunday’s revote was ordered by the high court after it overturned Yanukovych’s victory in a Nov. 21 run-off that it ruled fraudulent. Violations in that election prompted huge protests in Kiev by Yushchenko’s followers that last for days.