The battle for Ukraine's presidency is just beginning

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko poses for a picture with servicemen during a rehearsal for the Independence Day military parade in central Kiev, Ukraine, August 22, 2018
Elections are looming in the Ukraine, a telling time for a country in the midst of an ongoing bloody conflict and a stark East-West divide. In a race with over forty officially registered candidates, the country is far from unified when it comes to backing a new leader, but three individuals have managed to stand out as likely contenders. Petro Poroshenko, Yulia Tymoshenko, and Volodymyr Zelenskiy have positioned themselves as the top choices, but it will be a long, contentious race to the polls with both Ukrainian and Russian interests dangling in the balance. Allegations of vote buying, corruption, and Russian interference have spread, promising to heavily influence decisions made at the polls on March 31 and April 21. Standing at a crossroads of Russian influence and Western ideals, a new administration could see shifts in either direction and mark a new course for Ukrainians.

Poroshenko (Better the Devil We Know?)
To an American audience, an incumbent candidate should have a decided upper hand in an election. But among Ukrainians, who have only re-elected one president since 1991, Ukrainian leader Petro Poroshenko has the highest disapproval rating of any candidate. Crippling gas price increases and policies that have alienated the country’s east have proven detrimental to his campaign while scandals involving his close associates continue to emerge. Despite his controversies, however, some Western allies are hoping for a Poroshenko win as his policies most actively seek to assimilate Ukraine into Western ideals. Since the start of his first term, he has put policies in place to promote the use of Ukrainian language, bolster the creation of an independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church, and rally support in the West for large-scale sanctions for Russia. These policies have attracted negative attention from the Kremlin and culminated in active efforts from Russia to prevent his taking a second term.
Read the original text at The National Interest.
See also:
Leave a comment
  • Latest
  • Read
  • Commented
Calendar Content
«    Июнь 2019    »