KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — A leading sports association says world boxing champion and key Ukrainian opposition leader Vitali Klitschko plans to run for his country’s presidency in 2015.
Klitschko was elected to parliament last fall as part of the pro-Western party Udar (whose English translation is “Punch.”) Since then, Klitschko, the reigning WBC heavyweight champion, has campaigned against what he calls authoritarian moves by President Viktor Yanukovych, such as the jailing of former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.
WBC said on its web-site Wednesday that Klitschko, 42, “wants to keep participating in politics and run for the presidency” in 2015. Klitschko’s office declined to comment.
Due to his reformist agenda and national celebrity status, Klitschko has become one of the country’s most popular opposition leaders.