There is speculation in Ukraine whether the presidential election will be held despite the war. Now head of state Zelensky has clearly rejected this idea. Meanwhile, an accident rocks the military. An overview of the latest events.
Ukrainian head of state Volodymyr Zelensky has clearly spoken out against initiatives to hold a presidential election in March despite the ongoing Russian war of aggression. “I think that elections are not appropriate now,” said Zelenskyj on Monday in his evening video message broadcast in Kiev. Political division in the country, which has to overcome other challenges because of the Russian invasion, is not appropriate. A cancellation of the vote at the end of March 2024 was expected. However, there has recently been an increase in voices advocating political competition and elections.
Zelensky: Available resources should be directed towards “victory over Russia”.
The resources of the state and Ukrainians should rather be directed toward “our victory” over Russia, Zelensky said. “And we all understand that now, in times of war, when there are many challenges, it is absolutely irresponsible to throw the issue of elections lightly and playfully into society.”
Ukraine must defend itself, act united and not lose itself in political debates or project the image of a lack of unity, as the aggressor Russia expects. “If there is no victory, then there will be no country. Our victory is possible,” said Zelensky. There is no room for conflict.
Due to martial law, the regular parliamentary elections scheduled for the end of October according to the constitution had already been cancelled. Recently there was speculation in the Ukrainian media about alleged changes in the law to enable presidential elections even in times of war. Martial law was imposed across the country after the Russian army invaded more than 20 months ago. Current law only provides for elections after the end of the war. Zelensky has been in office since May 2019.
Adjutant of Ukrainian commander dies in explosion
The Ukrainian military leadership was shaken by a serious accident on Monday evening. According to authorities, an aide to Ukrainian commander-in-chief Valeriy Zalushnyj died when a grenade exploded. “Today my assistant and close friend died under tragic circumstances on his birthday in the company of his relatives,” Zalushnyj said on Telegram. Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko spoke of an accident. According to his statements, Saluschnyj’s personal assistant had live grenades at home.
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Accordingly, the major had shown his son some grenades that he had received for his birthday. The grenade accidentally went off and the father was killed in the explosion. The child was injured.
The man who gave the officer the fatal grenades has probably already been identified. He is said to have given the adjutant a bottle of whiskey and six grenades. During a search of his study, additional hand grenades were found, Klymenko said. The recipient may have thought the grenades were dummies. The major leaves behind his wife and four children, it was said. A police statement had previously spoken of “careless handling of ammunition”.
Ukraine continues counteroffensive
Commander-in-Chief Saluschnyj recently made headlines with statements in the British magazine “The Economist” that the Ukrainian defensive battle against the Russian invasion was increasingly turning into a trench war. The general was criticized by the presidential office for his detailed statements.
Ukraine continues the counteroffensive to liberate its Russian-occupied territories in the east and south of the country. In the Donetsk region, fighting continues around the industrial city of Avdiivka. Russian troops expect to soon be able to occupy the heavily destroyed city.
I have been working in the news industry for over 6 years, first as a reporter and now as an editor. I have covered politics extensively, and my work has appeared in major newspapers and online news outlets around the world. In addition to my writing, I also contribute regularly to 24 Hours World.