Ukraine's Zelensky Calls Snap Parliamentary Polls for July 21

W460

Ukraine's new President Volodymyr Zelensky on Tuesday called early parliamentary elections for July 21.

Zelensky, who took office on Monday, also dissolved the current parliament, according to a decree published on the presidential administration's website.

In his inaugural speech Monday, the 41-year-old former comedian announced he would dissolve parliament in order to call early elections, originally scheduled for October.

On Tuesday, during a meeting with parliamentary leaders, Zelensky said the current chamber is supported by only four percent of Ukrainians.

He became Ukraine's youngest post-Soviet president after winning a landslide victory over incumbent Petro Poroshenko with a campaign capitalising on widespread discontent with the political establishment.

His controversial move to call early elections is widely seen as an attempt to gain momentum and cement power at the likely highest point of his popularity.

On Monday, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman said he would resign on Tuesday.

Zelensky also called for the sacking of the head of the state security service, prosecutor-general and defence minister who are loyal to his predecessor but these moves have to be approved by parliament.

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