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Ukrainian opposition needs strong candidate to run in presidential election - Klitschko

November 16, 2013, 2:12 UTC+3 16
He is sure that consolidating votes to support a candidate who is most likely to clinch the victory is the only way for the opposition to win the election due in 2015
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© EPA/SERGEY DOLZHENKO

KIEV, November 16 (Itar-Tass) - Nominating the opposition parties’ leaders Arseny Yatsenuyk and Oleg Tyagnibok as candidates in the presidential election will impede the Ukrainian opposition’s progress on its way to victory, the leader of the Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform UDAR (PUNCH) party Vitali Klitschko said in an interview to Ukrainian magazine Focus.

Klitschko is sure that consolidating votes to support a candidate who is most likely to clinch the victory is the only way for the opposition to win the election due in 2015. Proposing the leader of Batkivshchyna’s (Fatherland) parliamentary fraction Yatsenuyk and the nationalist Svoboda’s (Freedom) Tyagnibok will complicate the task for the opposition and help those in power manipulate the election, UDAR’s leader believes.

“In this case there is no absolute guarantee the opposition’s candidate will make it to the second round,” he said.

Asked whether he could sacrifice his political career for the sake of the release of the opposition leader Yulia Timoshenko, now in jail, Klichko said evasively “it is only a speculation and the main task now is to secure Timoshenko's release from prison”.

Klitschko announced in parliament he would run in the next presidential election in 2015 on October 24. On the same day parliament introduced an amendment to the Tax Code declaring any person with a right to permanent residence in a foreign country as a non-resident of Ukraine. The amendment is likely to affect Klitschko, who has a residence permit in Germany and for a certain period paid taxes there. His party described this law approved by President Viktor Yanukovich on November 8 as a provocation against their leader.

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