New Ukraine parliament packs punches -- literally -- in first session
December 14, 2012 -- Updated 0221 GMT (1021 HKT)
- First session of new parliament in Ukraine ends in fisticuffs; one member's ear is torn
- Fighting prevents the selection of speakers and prime minister, which will continue Thursday
- Five main parties gained seats in election held in October, and the ruling Party of Regions won
(CNN) -- Members of Ukraine's newly elected parliament came to blows Wednesday amid accusations of changing political views, and the mayhem prevented the election of a new prime minister and speaker.
The disruption started when members of the opposition tried to prevent two of its members from being sworn in because of suspicions that they had changed their political views.
Read more: Ukraine: Caught between East and West
One member's ear was torn, and others were thrown out of the session and the doors were blocked. The action was broadcast live on the parliamentary channel in Ukraine.
Women demanding democratic reform
Ukrainians head to the polls
Later, members of the Svoboda Party, which came in fifth in national elections held in October, broke the doors and a metal detector at the parliament's entrance to let even more members in.
"We knocked and knocked," said Svoboda Party MP Yuriy Syrotyuk. "The question is, who locked the doors for the members of parliament?"
Read more: Tymoshenko blasts Ukraine leader from prison
Member walked on tables, on their colleagues' heads and the speaker's seat. The number of injuries has not been released.
Eventually members agreed to suspend the session and resume Thursday. "Our negotiations were successful" said Oleksandr Efremov, a member of the Temporary Parliamentary Panel. "We negotiated to continue negotiations."
According to Ukrainian law, members of parliament are inviolable and cannot be punished, and police cannot intervene. Therefore, fights among members, many of whom are or were professional athletes, are common. Notably, Heavyweight World Boxing Champion Vitali Klitchko, also a party leader, was not involved in Wednesday's fisticuffs.
Elections in October left the ruling Party of Regions, led by President Viktor Yanukovich, in power. The second-place party, the United Opposition coalition, is organized by former Prime Minister Yuliya Tymoshenko, who is in prison on charges of abuse of authority, a punishment seen by the United States and Europe as politically motivated.
Part of complete coverage on
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1526 GMT (2326 HKT)
Advocates say the exam includes unnecessarily invasive and irrelevant procedures -- like a so-called "two finger" test.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0009 GMT (0809 HKT)
Supplies of food, clothing and fuel are running short in Damascus and people are going hungry as the civil war drags on.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1801 GMT (0201 HKT)
Supporters of Richard III want a reconstruction of his head to bring a human aspect to a leader portrayed as a murderous villain.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1548 GMT (2348 HKT)
Robert Fowler spent 130 days held hostage by the same al Qaeda group that was behind the Algeria massacre. He shares his experience.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0507 GMT (1307 HKT)
As "We are the World" plays, a video shows what looks like a nuclear attack on the U.S. Jim Clancy reports on a bizarre video from North Korea.
The relationship is, once again, cold enough to make Obama's much-trumpeted "reset" in Russian-U.S. relations seem thoroughly off the rails.
Ten years on, what do you think the Iraq war has changed in you, and in your country? Send us your thoughts and experiences.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1215 GMT (2015 HKT)
Musician Daniela Mercury has sold more than 12 million albums worldwide over a career span of nearly 30 years.
Photojournalist Alison Wright travelled the world to capture its many faces in her latest book, "Face to Face: Portraits of the Human Spirit."
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0006 GMT (0806 HKT)
Europol claims 380 soccer matches, including top level ones, were fixed - as the scandal widens, CNN's Dan Rivers looks at how it's done.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1237 GMT (2037 HKT)
That galaxy far, far away is apparently bigger than first thought. The "Star Wars" franchise will get two spinoff movies, Disney announced.
February 8, 2013 -- Updated 0718 GMT (1518 HKT)
It's an essential part of any trip, an activity we all take part in. Yet almost none of us are any good at it. Souvenir buying is too often an obligatory slog.
Today's five most popular stories