Exit polls suggested candy tycoon Petro Poroshenko was elected president Sunday in the first round of balloting in the bitterly divided country, and he vowed “to bring peace to the Ukrainian land.”
Two exit polls gave Poroshenko more than 55 percent of the vote, well ahead of former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko in second place with just nearly 13 percent. And former journalist Oleh Lyashko came in third with 8 percent. If confirmed by official results on Monday, there will be no need for a runoff vote on June 15.
The rebels had vowed to block the ballot in the east and less than 20 percent of the polling stations were open there but nationwide, about 60 percent of the electorate turned out, the central elections commission said.
Poroshenko, viewing the exit polls as definitive evidence of victory, said his first steps as president would be to visit the eastern industrial region of Donbass, “to guarantee them security, to guarantee them defending of their rights, including speaking any language they want,” he said.
But he said of those who are not willing to put down their weapons, “they are terrorists, and no country in the world has any negotiations with terrorists.”
He also promised a dialogue with residents of eastern Ukraine and said he was ready to extend amnesty to those who did not commit any crimes.
Meanwhile, Ukraine’s former World Heavyweight Boxing Champ, Vitali Klitschko, claimed victory as the Mayor of Kiev. But the voting did not come without challenges. CCTV’s Roee Ruttenberg reports from Kiev with more.
Exit Polls Show Poroshenko Winning Ukraine ElectionsUkraine's billionaire presidential candidate Petro Poroshenko has declared victory. And, exit polls suggest he got enough votes to avoid a potentially divisive runoff. Also, Ukraine's former World Heavyweight Boxing Champ, Vitali Klitschko, claimed victory as the Mayor of Kiev. But the voting did not come without challenges. CCTV's Roee Ruttenberg reports from Kiev with more.
In U.S., one of the few places a Ukrainian expatriate could physically cast an absentee ballot in Sunday’s election was at the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington D.C. CCTV’s Sean Callebs was there to speak to the voters.
Ukrainian Voters in U.S. Cast Absentee BallotsIn the U.S., one of the few places a Ukrainian expatriate could physically cast an absentee ballot in Sunday's election was at the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington D.C. CCTV's Sean Callebs was there.
CCTV’s Asieh Namdar interviews Brian Mefford, director of Committee for Open democracy, and one of the election observors, on the results in Ukraine’s elections.