UKRAINE MOURNS MINERS LOST IN METHANE BLAST. Nineteen of the 63 miners killed in the underground explosion at the Skochynsky coal mine were buried on 6 April, which was declared a day of official mourning, dpa reported. Prime Minister Valeriy Pustovoytenko told a news conference after the funeral that the government can close down dangerous mines only after it has created other jobs for the region's miners. The government has earmarked 5 million hryvnyas ($2.5 million) as compensation for the families of miners killed in the tragedy. Each family has been promised a free apartment and a cash payment of some $20,000. JM

VOTES STILL BEING COUNTED IN UKRAINE. The Ukrainian Central Electoral Commission is planning to announce the final results of the 29 March elections early next week, commission head Mykhaylo Ryabets told journalists in Kiev on 6 April, Ukrainian Television-1 reported. Ryabets also said the commission has received many complaints of election violations throughout the country. An eight-member team is investigating complaints from the Dnipropetrovsk region, where the number of votes scored by the Hromada party is half that received nationwide. Hromada is led by former Prime Minister Pavlo Lazarenko, who is an opponent of President Leonid Kuchma. Meanwhile, the Agrarian Party, which did not overcome the 4 percent vote barrier, has claimed that its votes in several constituencies were appropriated by other parties. JM