Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych is likely to run for president in 2009, according to Ukrayinska Pravda.

“The Party of Regions will certainly submit its candidacy. It is not difficult to predict whom they submit – a politician with the highest rating at the time,” he said in an interview with Inter TV Channel.

The PM does not rule out the possibility of electing president in the Verkhovna Rada.

“Both variants are possible: the president may be elected either by people or the parliament. It is hard to predict what direction Ukraine will follow while developing its political system.

“I guess much depends on the President and the opposition. These political forces, I mean Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc and Our Ukraine, will mostly determine whether it happens (the presidential elections in the Parliament).”

Mr. Yanukovych emphasized the parliamentary coalition will proceed from necessity of providing stability in the country while decision-making. “If our decision does not destabilize the situation in the country, we will do it.”

Say, if President Yushchenko opposes to the decision of the presidential elections in the Parliament, it will be a destabilizing factor and the coalition most probably rejects the idea. If the President backs the idea of reshaping the form of presidential elections with extending the term of presidency, the decision is likely to come in force.

Nevertheless the PM assumes the anti-crisis coalition will agree with the opposition on new format of the presidential elections if the incumbent president himself becomes a destabilizing factor.

“If the president becomes a destabilizing factor in the country by blocking activity of the government and the Parliament, the coalition may team up with the coalition.” Yet the opposition rejects such developments at the moment.

Mr. Yanukovych pointed out personally he and the Party of Regions categorically objected to the early elections so far. “It will destabilize the situation in the country and do harm to the society.”

The PM admitted the parliamentary coalition and the government had no grudge against the President as yet. The tough relations between two power braches originated from imperfect system of power distribution. At that, as Mr. Yanukovych assures, the President’s circle stirs up more trouble than Mr. Yushchenko alone.