Ukraine: amid fresh violence in country’s east, Ban appeals for calm ahead of elections

Ukrainian flags in front of the House with Chimaeras, Kyiv. Photo: UNDP Kyiv

22 May 2014 – As violence continues to roil eastern Ukraine, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon reiterated today his appeals to all parties ahead of Sunday’s scheduled presidential elections to redouble their efforts to help create the conditions that will allow voters across the crisis-torn country to safely cast their ballots.

“The Secretary-General is dismayed by the deadly overnight attack against a military checkpoint in eastern Ukraine,” said a statement issued by Mr. Ban’s spokesperson in New York.

According to media reports, renewed clashes between anti-Government groups and Ukrainian security forces near the eastern city of Donetsk left at least a dozen soldiers dead overnight.

With only three days before presidential elections, the Secretary-General, in the statement, appealed to all parties to redouble their efforts and help create the necessary conditions so that all eligible voters throughout the country could cast their ballots in a free and fair environment and without fear for their safety.

“Voters across Ukraine should see the elections as an opportunity to help move the country on to a more inclusive and stable trajectory while also determining the country’s leadership at a pivotal moment,” the statement concludes.

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