Who is who in the Circus of clowns: Victor Yanukovych

Kyiv Post profile of performers

Born into the family of a metalworker and a nurse in the Donetsk Oblast city of Yenakiyevo, Yanukovych, 59, had a troubled past.He was twice jailed for violent crimes in his youth but his official biography states that his convictions were later expunged. Yanukovych began his career as a transport executive in the Soviet Union’s key coal-mining industry in eastern Ukraine. He says he received his doctorate of economics – the equivalent of a Ph.D. – in 2000. He became governor of the Donetsk region, home to more than three million people and an economic powerhouse of Ukraine, less than a year after entering the local administration. Kuchma appointed him prime minister in late 2002. Yanukovych served as prime minister again in 2006-2007. Yanukovych and his Regions party have consistently been backed by big business tycoons from the Donbass region, including Rinat Akhmetov, Ukraine’s richest man.


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