On Tuesday, May 21, President Volodymr Zelenskiy formally called for parliamentary elections to be held Sunday, July 21. The move comes after Zelenskiy announced he will disband parliament during his inauguration speech on Monday, May 20, in an attempt to increase support for his party. Ukraine's Verkhovna Rada (parliament) is currently dominated by supporters of former President Petro Poroshenko.
Political tensions are expected to remain high in the coming weeks as campaigns for the parliamentary elections begin. Political rallies and other election-related events are to be anticipated nationwide, and associated acts of violence cannot be ruled out. Heightened security measures around polling station are anticipated in the days leading up to the July 21 election.
Volodymr Zelenskiy secured 73 percent of the vote in the April 21 runoff vote, with incumbent President Petro Poroshenko receiving less than 25 percent. According to international observers, the election was broadly free and competitive. Zelenskiy, a comedian and actor, is a political newcomer and had lead in opinion polls leading up to the vote. Many saw Poroshenko's poor electoral performance as a rejection of his economic policies and his implication in graft allegations.
Individuals in Ukraine, particularly in Kyiv, are advised to monitor the situation, anticipate transportation and commercial disruptions during the inauguration, avoid all protests and political rallies due to the risk of violence, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities.
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