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Leonid Kuchma
Леонід Кучма
2nd President of Ukraine
6th including Presidents in exile
In office
19 July 1994 – 23 January 2005
Prime Minister Vitaliy Masol
Yevhen Marchuk
Pavlo Lazarenko
Valeriy Pustovoitenko
Viktor Yushchenko
Anatoliy Kinakh
Viktor Yanukovych
Preceded by Leonid Kravchuk
Succeeded by Viktor Yushchenko
2nd Prime Minister of Ukraine
In office
13 October 1992 – 22 September 1993
President Leonid Kravchuk
Deputy Ihor Yukhnovskyi
Yukhym Zvyahilsky
Preceded by Valentyn Symonenko (Acting)
Succeeded by Yukhym Zvyahilsky (Acting)
General Director of Yuzhmash
In office
November 1986 – 13 October 1992
Preceded by Aleksandr Makarov
Succeeded by Yuriy Alekseyev
People's Deputy of Ukraine
In office
May 15, 1990 – May 10, 1994
Constituency Communist Party (until August 1991), Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, District No.81
People's Deputy of Ukraine
In office
May 10, 1994 – July 15, 1994
Constituency Independent, Chernihiv Oblast,
District No.448
Personal details
Born (1938-08-09) August 9, 1938 (age 83)
Chaikyne, Novhorod-Siverskyi Raion, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union
Political party
Spouse(s) Lyudmila Talalayeva
Children Olena Pinchuk
Alma mater Dnipropetrovsk National University
Signature Leonid Kuchma Signature 1996.png

Leonid Danylovych Kuchma (Ukrainian: Леоні́д Дани́лович Ку́чма; born 9 August 1938) is a Ukrainian politician who was the second President of independent Ukraine from 19 July 1994 to 23 January 2005. Kuchma took office after winning the 1994 presidential election against his rival, the incumbent Leonid Kravchuk. Kuchma won re-election for an additional five-year term in 1999.

His presidency was surrounded by numerous corruption scandals and the lessening of media freedoms. Corruption accelerated after Kuchma's election in 1994, but in 2000–2001, his power began to weaken in the face of exposures in the media.

On his watch the Ukrainian economy continued to decline until 1999, whereas growth was recorded since 2000, bringing relative prosperity to some segments of urban residents. During his presidency, Ukrainian-Russian ties began to improve.

After a successful career in the machine-building industry of the Soviet Union, Kuchma began his political career in 1990, when he was elected to the Verkhovna Rada (the Ukrainian parliament); he was re-elected in 1994. He served as Ukrainian Prime Minister between October 1992 and September 1993.

From July 2014 until October 2018 Kuchma was a special presidential representative of Ukraine at the semi-official peace talks regarding the ongoing War in Donbass.

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