04/02/2019, 11.15
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After the elections, Ukraine faces its future

by Vladimir Rozanskij

The substantial legitimacy of the vote confirmed, the run-off is scheduled for April 20. The two challengers, the outgoing Poroshenko and the comic Zelensky, confront each other on the relationship with Russia, with the European Union and with NATO. Ukraine seems determined to write its future without Moscow's interference.

Kiev (AsiaNews) - After the counting of almost all the ballot papers, in Ukraine the clash between the young comedian Volodymir Zelensky and the outgoing president Petro Poroshenko is confirmed, in the run-off scheduled for April 21 (except for surprises).

In fact, all complaints are considered up to ten days after the vote, as already announced by the defeated Yulia Timoshenk. However these should not however overturn the results of the vote. Western observers have also recognized the substantial democratic correctness of the Ukrainian election.

Zelensky obtained 30.26% of the votes, while Poroshenko stopped at just over half (15.96%). Timoshenko, who hoped to remove the position of the president, received 13.37%, while the candidate supported by Moscow, Jurij Bojko, occupies the fourth place with 11.54% of the votes, more than expected. Zelensky managed to defeat Poroshenko even in "his" region of Vinnitsa, where his confectionery company is based, and where the president convinced the first pro-Russian metropolitan to move to the new autocephalous Church.

The winner immediately admitted to being "humanly rather moved" by the success obtained: "It is a great responsibility, I thank all those who voted for me not to joke", also declaring that he was not open to alliances with any representative of the "Old power".

Poroshenko intervened in front of his supporters, recognizing the credibility of the elections according to European standards. He claimed to have "taken the first step towards victory", despite the Kremlin's willingness to stop seeing him in the presidential chair. He confirmed the need to maintain sanctions against Russia.

The outgoing president downplayed the success of Zelensky, calling him "Kolomoiskij marionette", that is the television magnate on whose networks the comedian performs, who actively participated in the electoral campaign. "Enough with the jokes now - warned Poroshenko - on April 21st we must confirm our path to enter the European Union and NATO, or we will return to the sad Soviet past".

Zelensky himself, however, is anything but condescending to Moscow. In recent days he has provocatively addressed a question to the Kremlin, asking how much Moscow is willing to pay to compensate for the occupation of Crimea and the Donbass.

The Kremlin spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, replied that President Putin "is willing to explain to every citizen of Ukraine that Russia does not occupy any Ukrainian territory, not even the autonomous republics of Donetsk and Lugansk in the Donbass, which have been refused by Ukraine itself ”.

The Russians do not even want to talk about the Crimea: "A question that is closed once and for all, it is neither an occupation nor an annexation, everything happened according to the same Ukrainian legislation and international law".

However, the Russians have expressed some satisfaction with the outcome of the Ukrainian elections; according to senate speaker, Valentina Matveenko, "the complete disaster of the ruling elite in these years is evident", a result that is predictable because of the "destruction of the economy and the total impoverishment of the population". In any case, Ukraine is preparing to rebuild the country after turbulent years, and will hardly do so under Moscow's orders.

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