All news

Zelensky claims his presidential terms not over yet

Under the Ukrainian Constitution, Zelensky’s five-year term ended on May 21

MOSCOW, May 21. /TASS/. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky believes that his presidential term has not expired yet.

"My five years [in the presidential office] are not over yet. Due to the martial law, they continue," Zelensky said in an interview for Reuters.

He added that he cannot assess his actions, because "that would not be quite ethical."

Under the Ukrainian Constitution, Zelensky’s five-year term ended on May 21. However, Kiev refused to hold presidential elections during wartime, even though the Constitution only prohibits holding parliamentary elections in such situation.

On the legitimacy of power in Ukraine

The issue of legitimacy of power in the absence of parliamentary and presidential elections is currently a hot topic in Ukraine. In particular, Verkhovna Rada Deputy Alexander Dubinsky claimed that Zelensky’s power expired on May 21, and there is no legitimate way to prolong it. Ukrainian ex-Ambassador to the UK Vadim Pristayko acknowledged that Kiev’s Western partners are also concerned over the end of Zelensky’s presidential duties.

Russian President Vladimir Putin noted that the issue of Zelensky’s legitimacy must be resolved by Ukraine’s political and judicial systems. Russian Security Council Deputy Chairman Dmitry Medvedev said in an interview with TASS that Zelensky violates the law of his own country by his attempt to stay in power after the end of his term. Russian Permanent Representative to the UN Vasily Nebenzya noted that all mediators of the peace process in Ukraine must take into consideration that Zelensky’s powers have expired and there is no point in signing any documents with him after May 20.

Meanwhile, EU External Action Service Spokesman Peter Stano noted that the EU "has no doubts in Zelensky’s legitimacy," and UN Secretary General’s Spokesman Stephane Dujarric said that Zelensky remains the head of state for the UN.