Ukrainian Presidential Press Secretary Svyatoslav Tsegolko says Thursday's statements by Russian President Vladimir Putin are a clear example of interference in the electoral process in Ukraine, despite the fact that the campaign has not even started yet.

"Putin's dislike for Poroshenko as a statesman who has disrupted the Kremlin's plans to return Ukraine under the control of the Russian Empire is obvious," he wrote on Facebook.

It's the Ukrainian people, not the Kremlin, who will decide on the issue of Ukraine leadership, according to the press secretary.

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"As for Poroshenko, he has been advocating a politico-diplomatic settlement, but he will never agree to peace under the terms of the aggressor state. By combining defense and diplomatic efforts, the head of state will continue protecting our country's sovereignty, territorial integrity, and independence. And he will fight for such a peaceful settlement, which is in the national interests of Ukraine, and not of the aggressor Russia," Tsegolko said.

As reported earlier, on November 15, following a visit to Singapore, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that for the conflict in Donbas to be resolved, Ukraine must change its leadership.