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Petro Mykolayovych Symonenko ( ; ) (born August 1, 1952 in Donetskmarker) is a Ukrainianmarker politician and the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Ukraine. Symonenko was the Communist Party's candidate in both the 1999 and 2004 presidential elections. During the Ukrainian presidential election, 2010 he was the candidate of the Election bloc of left and central left political forces.


Symonenko became a member of the CPSU in 1978, and worked as a party apparatchik in 1980s. He has been the chairman of the Communist Party of Ukraine since 1993. He is also the Chairman of the Communist Party Faction in the Verkhovna Radamarker (parliament).

Symonenko has been a Ukrainian delegate to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. From 1994 to 1996 he was a member of the Ukrainian parliament's Constitution Commission.

He was a candidate in the 1999 presidential election, receiving 22.24% of the votes in the first round and taking second place. In the second round he won 37.8% of the votes, losing to Leonid Kuchma. His election program had classic communist content.

Late 2002 Viktor Yushchenko (Our Ukraine), Oleksandr Moroz (Socialist Party of Ukraine), Yulia Tymoshenko (Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc) and Symonenko issued a joint statement concerning "the beginning of a state revolution in Ukraine". The communist stept out of the alliance, Symonenko was against a single candidate from the alliance in the Ukrainian presidential election 2004, but the other three party's remained allies (until July 2006).

Symonenko's support sharply declined at the time of the 2004 presidential election. Symonenko received 5% of the votes and came in fourth place, unable to get into the controversial runoff which caused the Orange Revolution.

Symonenko was re-elected to the Verkhovna Radamarker in the September 2007 parliamentary election. At the opening of the new parliament's first session on November 23 2007, he was re-elected as Chairman of the Communist Party faction.


In Symonenko's opinion, the Holodomor is a myth and falsification. Commenting in 2007 on the Holodomor, Symonenko said he "does not believe there was any deliberate starvation at all," and accused President Viktor Yushchenko of "using the famine to stir up hatred." In response, Yushchenko declared he wants "a new law criminalising Holodomor denial."


  1. Bloc of left and center-left forces to nominate CPU Leader for Ukraine's president, Interfax-Ukraine (October 3, 2009)
  2. Spravedlyvist Party backs Communist leader as single candidate from left political forces at president election, Interfax-Ukraine (October 10, 2009)
  3. Союз Лівих Сил підтримав кандидатуру Петра Симоненко, Union of Leftists (October 16, 2009)
  4. Події за темами: XXII з’їзд Соціал-демократичної партії України(о), UNIAN (October 17, 2009)
  5. Social-Democratic Party supports Symonenko as single candidate for president post from left political forces, Kyiv Post (October 17, 2009)
  6. "Opening of the First Session of The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine of the 6th Convocation", Verkhovna Rada website, November 23, 2007.
  7. Understanding Ukrainian Politics: Power, Politics, and Institutional Design by Paul D'Anieri, M.E. Sharpe, 2006, ISBN-10: 0765618117/ISBN-13: 978-0765618115, page 117
  8. Ukraine coalition born in chaos, BBC News (July 11, 2006)
  9. "The Makeup of the New Verkhovna Rada", Ukrayinska Pravda, November 5, 2007.
  11. Laura Sheeter, "Ukraine remembers famine horror", BBC News, November 24, 2007

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