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Yanukovych to Tymoshenko: "Go Back to the Kitchen"

21. January 2010 by Daniel 0 Comments

Ukrainian presidential candidate Viktor Yanukovych on Wednesday told his rival for the country’s top spot, Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, to take responsibility for herself or “go back to the kitchen.”

 

The leader of Ukraine’s Regions Party, Yanukovych addressed supporters in the Kharkiv region Wednesday and proclaimed that he is unafraid to criticize Tymoshenko.

 

“I’m told that it is useless and wrong to argue with a woman,” he said. “I don’t agree with this. First and foremost, I think that if she is prime minister, she has to be held responsible for everything she says. And if she is a woman, she has to go back to the kitchen.”

 

He went on to allude to the idea that Tymoshenko has misled the public and betrayed its trust in her authority as prime minister. He also accused Tymoshenko of bearing some of the blame for Ukraine’s economic woes and reiterated that she needs to take responsibility.

 

Tymoshenko did not issue a direct response to Yanukovych’s comments, but criticized him for refusing to participate in any televised debates before the initial presidential vote. She called the move “common cowardice.”

 

The two candidates are sparring against each other ahead of the final round of voting Feb. 7. They emerged as the top two vote-getters from a field of more than 20 candidates who ran in the first round of the election on Jan. 17, Yanukovych taking 35 percent of the vote and Tymoshenko taking 25 percent.

 

Yanukovych, who previously ran for president and was defeated in 2004, is seen as the more pro-Russian candidate, wanting to strengthen Ukrainian ties with Russia rather than align the country more with the west. Tymoshenko in contrast, seeks to distance Ukraine from Russia and strengthen relations with western Europe and the NATO countries.