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No presidential election in Ukraine till war ends: Zelensky

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. (The Presidential Office of Ukraine)
June 28, 2023

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has ruled out the possibility of elections being held amid the ongoing war with Russia. The development came even as officials from several allied and neutral nations agreed that any summit to endorse a peace blueprint was months away.

Ukranian law states that presidential elections may not be held while martial law is in place. While the actor-turned-politician’s tenure is slated to end in March next year, he is likely to remain at the helm for the remainder of the war. With both countries showing no signs of backing down — and peace talks yet to resume — it remains unclear exactly when polls can be held.

“If we have martial law, we cannot have elections. The constitution prohibits any elections during martial law. If there is no martial law, then there will be. Well, the law says that according to the constitution of Ukraine, after martial law ends, I think, in 90 days, elections are held. It’s something like that. I don’t remember actually,” he had told The Washington Post during an interview last month.

In recent days, Russia has been left shaken by a near rebellion that saw members ofthe mercenary Wagner group march towards Moscow. The armed rebellion led by Yevgeny Prigozhin had eventually turned back some 200 km from the capital city — posing the most serious threat to Vladimir Putin’s nearly quarter-century rule.

The chaos within the enemy’s ranks was also an unexpected gift and timely morale booster for Ukrainian troops. A video of well-known Ukrainian drone commander “Magyar” watching the revolt while eating enormous amounts of popcorn went viral. A plethora of gleeful memes mocking Russian leader Vladimir Putin inundated social media, and statement after statement from Ukraine’s top brass described the turmoil as a sure sign of more instability to come.

The mercenary chief later said that the march was a protest aimed at bringing to account those responsible for “enormous mistakes” in Russia’s war in Ukraine as well as to prevent the “destruction” of his private army by officials.


(c) 2023 the Mint

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