Poroshenko accuses Russia of wanting to interfere in presidential elections in his country

 Ukrainian President Pietro Poroshenko has accused Russia of wanting to interfere in his country's presidential election in March.

"Putin's plan is clear: destroying the independence of the Ukrainian state, destroying democracy, and depriving Ukrainians of the right to live a peaceful and secure life," Poroshenko said in an interview on Saturday.

Poroshenko said that Putin would try "obsessively" to put Ukraine again under the influence of Russia as it was the time of the Soviet Union.

The Verkhovna Rada on Thursday rejected the entry of election observers from the Russian side.

The lawmakers in Kiev said the law was aimed at preventing Russian interference in Ukrainian affairs.

Polls indicate that the results of the vote in the next election will force Poroshenko to take a likely re-run.

Poroshenko said in his speech that he was struggling for a "honorable victory" that would not be questioned by anyone.

If he is reelected for a second term, he will fight poverty in the country and pave the way for Ukraine's accession to the European Union and NATO, and will work for peace.

Poroshenko, a multi-project businessman elected president after a coup in 2014, was his predecessor, Viktor Yanukovich, who fled to Russia.

Kiev believes it is in a state of war with the giant neighbor Russia after its annexation of the Crimea in 2014 and its support for separatists in eastern Ukraine.


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