Ukrainian opposition presidential candidate Viktor Yushchenko has thanked tens of thousands of his supporters for their continuous protests following last month's flawed run-off vote.
Mr. Yushchenko told the cheering crowd in Kiev that their 17 days of peaceful demonstrations have led Ukraine to realize it is a European nation.
He said their efforts, after the disputed November 21st presidential run-off election, helped lead to the changes in electoral law adopted today (Wednesday).
His supporters waved flags and banners. Fireworks followed his speech.
Hours earlier, parliament overwhelmingly adopted a series of electoral reforms, and outgoing President Leonid Kuchma signed them into law.
The measures, proposed by the opposition, are aimed at preventing fraud in the December 26th re-vote of the flawed election.
Also included are constitutional changes that transfer some presidential powers to parliament.
Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych is the government-backed candidate in the election.
The government-backed candidate Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych and opposition leader Yushchenko will face off in the upcoming election.