15 percent of Ukrainian voters in Estonia vote in Verkhovna Rada elections

Elections at the Ukrainian Embassy in Tallinn on Sunday. July 21, 2019.
Elections at the Ukrainian Embassy in Tallinn on Sunday. July 21, 2019. Source: ERR

Ukrainian citizens living or temporarily staying in Estonia voted in Sunday's parliamentary elections at the Ukrainian Embassy in Tallinn on Sunday. According to the chair of the polling division, over 4,700 Ukrainians were registered to vote in Estonia, nearly 730 of whom had voted by evening, indicating a 15-percent voter turnout.

Middday saw many voters turn up at the embassy to vote, with a line even forming at the door at one point, reported ETV news broadcast "Aktuaalne kaamera." According to polling division director Mihhail Vaitman, however, Sunday's Verkhovna Rada elections nonetheless attracted fewer voters than the April 21 presidential election did.

"We believe that we likely won't see the sheer number of voters today that we did for the presidential election," Vaitman said. "Also because it's summer. But we hope that overall turnout is respectable and that people make the right choices for them."

April's presidential election, however, should increase voters' interest in the parliamentary elections as well.

"In connection with the change in president, these elections should be of slightly greater interest, as the positioning of political powers will change, and a lot will change in general [in Ukraine], " Vaitman said. "Of course, time will tell to what extent these changes are positive and successful. Time will tell. But citizens who feel responsible for what is happening [in Uraine], have to come and vote."

"You have to vote to ensure that people live well," Viktor said. "If everyone were to skip it — I'm not going and I'm not going — what are you left with? Nothing good would come of it."

Among those willing to disclose for whom they voted, two voted in favor of candidates on the list of Servants of the People, the party of President Volodymr Zelensky.

"In favor of Zelensky," Roman explained. "If he is at the forefront and his party is also at the forefront, then that will mean results. He can influence them. That's why."

"You know, the president's party," Vassil said. "Perhaps something will come of it. God willing!"


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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