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INDEPENDENT WINS UKRAINIAN BY-ELECTION. Ukraine's Central Election Commission announced on 8 March that Oleksandr Vasylyev, head of the State Tax Administration in Donetsk Oblast, won election to the Verkhovna Rada in a Donetsk Oblast constituency (No. 61) on 7 March, UNIAN reported. Vasylyev, running as an independent, won nearly 79 percent of the vote, far outpacing 24 other candidates. The election was organized in connection with the departure of lawmaker Hennadiy Vasilyev, who was elected in March 2002 but appointed prosecutor-general in November 2003. The Committee of Ukrainian Voters, a nongovernmental group that monitors election campaigns in the country, said there were numerous violations of the law during the 2002 election in constituency No. 61. In particular, the committee charged that Vasylyev abused his official position to promote his candidacy and held meetings with voters at their workplace during the workday. JM