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OSCE suspects Poroshenko of breaching key election regulation

The first round of Ukraine’s presidential election was held on Sunday, March 31
Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko  EPA-EFE/SERGEY DOLZHENKO
Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko

KIEV, April 1. /TASS/. The OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) suspects incumbent Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko of violating one of the key election-regulating documents of the organization, a preliminary report by the OSCE ODIHR Election Observation Mission (EOM) to the Ukrainian presidential election states.

"The incumbent’s public appearances blurred the line between his official position and his standing as a candidate, challenging paragraph 5.4 of the 1990 OSCE Copenhagen Document," the document states.

"The use of social assistance programmes, salary increases and bonuses, and other financial incentives as campaign tools was the subject of widespread criticism levelled against the incumbent president," the report continues. "The ODIHR EOM observed and was informed of misuse of state resources at national and local levels by several candidates."

Meanwhile, the Ukrainian Interior Ministry informed that there had been no systematic violations of the electoral law during Sunday’s presidential election. "On the day of the voting, our employees detected 2,605 violations and opened 61 criminal cases," Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov stated on Monday, adding that some of the detected violations were "at times laughable, at times tiny". The Ukrainian minister also praised the work of national cybersecurity agencies.

The first round of Ukraine’s presidential election was held on Sunday, March 31. The country's Central Election Commission earlier said that none of the candidates had been able to secure the majority of votes in the first round. The runoff is scheduled for April 21.

Most experts say head of the Servant of the People party Vladimir Zelensky and incumbent head of state Pyotr Poroshenko will contest the presidency.