Co­me­dian, in­cum­bent to face off in elec­tion

The Buffalo News - - WORLD NEWS -

KIEV, Ukraine – Co­me­dian Volodymyr Ze­len­sky fin­ished first in Ukraine’s pres­i­den­tial elec­tion Sun­day and now will face in­cum­bent Pres­i­dent

Petro Poroshenko in a runoff April 21.

“This is just the first step to­wards the big vic­tory,” Ze­len­sky said in Kiev.

Poroshenko trailed by about 10 per­cent­age points, ac­cord­ing to exit polls. He said in a speech that “there are many can­di­dates, but only one pres­i­dent.”

Ze­len­sky ap­peared to mock that state­ment, telling sup­port­ers: “There are many exit polls, but only one win­ner.”

Ze­len­sky re­ceived about 30 per­cent of the votes. Poroshenko got about 17 per­cent and for­mer Prime Min­is­ter Yu­lia Ty­moshenko about 14 per­cent, ac­cord­ing to exit polls.

Ze­len­sky, a dark horse can­di­date who led in opin­ion sur­veys ahead of the elec­tion, dis­tin­guished him­self in op­po­si­tion to a po­lit­i­cal es­tab­lish­ment that has strug­gled with cor­rup­tion.

“To­day a new life starts, with­out cor­rup­tion,” Ze­len­sky, 41, said in Kiev. Ze­len­sky, who plays a fic­tional pres­i­dent on a pop­u­lar TV show, has never held po­lit­i­cal of­fice.

Mean­while Ukraine’s In­te­rior Min­istry said that more than 1,600 claims of elec­toral law vi­o­la­tions had been made.

– Tribune News

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