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Kremlin to decide on whether to congratulate Poroshenko after official election results

Earlier, President Vladimir Putin said Russia respects the elections held in Ukraine
Petro Poroshenko

MOSCOW, May 28. /ITAR-TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin will decide on whether to congratulate Ukraine’s future president Petro Poroshenko after the official results of the elctions are announced, presidential aide Yuri Ushakov said on Wednesday.

“When the final results (of the elections) are officially announced, then a decision will be taken,” Ushakov said, adding that the Russian president had earlier said that “we respect the elections held in Ukraine”.

Ukraine held early presidential elections on May 25. Candy-making billionaire Petro Poroshenko gained over 50% of the votes, according to preliminary results. The elections were held after a coup in February forced Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych to leave the country.

The elections were marred by their boycott in the eastern Donetsk and Luhansk regions, which had proclaimed their independence from Ukraine at the May 11 local referendums while Kiev continued its punitive operation in the east of the country.

The Russian presidential aide also said that Kiev’s use-of-force operations in the south-east of Ukraine were driving the situation into a further impasse.

“We believe that these provocative use-of-force actions are driving the situation into an impasse and it becomes more and more difficult to organize a dialogue with the Donetsk and Luhansk regions,” Ushakov said.

Putin has repeatedly spoken about the need to put an end to the punitive combat operation in south-eastern Ukraine and drew attention to this issue in a telephone conversation with the Italian prime minister on Tuesday, Ushakov said.

The Russian presidential aide also said that the Kremlin had not received a request from the Donetsk region for military assistance.