The former political party of ousted Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych says it will not take part in early parliamentary elections, scheduled for October 26.
Party of Regions Executive Secretary Borys Kolesnikov said on September 14 that the party’s political council has “decided against taking part in the elections" in the midst of a war.
With a pro-Russia platform, the Party of Regions has its electoral and financial base primarily in eastern and southeastern Ukraine.
The party won 185 parliamentary seats in the 2012 elections and formed a parliamentary faction that included 210 deputies.
The party condemned and disassociated itself from Yanukovych on February 23.
Since then, more than 120 lawmakers have left the party’s parliamentary faction.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko dissolved the parliament in August and scheduled the October 26 vote, calling it a move toward "cleansing" the legislature.