Presidential candidate and incumbent head of state Petro Poroshenko, via a video address, has appealed to presidential candidate, showman Volodymyr Zelensky, proposing that he stop putting forward conditions for participation in the public debate ahead of the election runoff where the two will face each other.
"Volodymyr Oleksandrovych, once again, I am here communicating with you through the camera lens instead of talking with you face to face. Don't be afraid, there's nothing scary about it. This is normal political tradition. Throughout my life, I have repeatedly faced challenges, not only from political opponents, but from strong adversaries. I looked into their eyes and didn't look away. I didn't look for reasons, put forward conditions, or hide behind anyone's back. That's ugly. Be a man. Come to the debate. If it's the stadium, let it be the stadium," the president said.
As UNIAN reported earlier, the Central Election Commission of Ukraine has processed 100% of the votes cast in the first round of presidential elections held March 31.
A total of 30.24% of the voters supported Volodymyr Zelensky, and 15.95% votes were cast for Petro Poroshenko.
On April 3, Zelensky declared his readiness to come to the debate with Poroshenko ahead of the runoff, however, he voiced a number of conditions. In particular, he said, the debates should be held at the Olimpiyskiy Stadium in Kyiv, "before the people of Ukraine", and with all TV channels being able to air the event live, while both candidates must undergo a medical exam and prove to the people that there are "no alcoholics or drug addicts" among them.
Poroshenko agreed to hold a debate with Zelensky at the stadium.
On Thursday, April 4, Zelensky posted another video where he proposed that the leader of the Batkivshchyna Party, Yulia Tymoshenko, who stopped short of the runoff, gaining the third largest number of votes in the first round, be a moderator at the debate.