Ukrainian boxer Vitali Klitschko to run for president

Vitali Klitschko celebrates after winning the WBC-heavy weight title in 2012 in Moscow, Russia.

Story highlights

  • "I cannot be intimidated or stopped," says "Dr. Ironfist"
  • Klitschko's professional record is 47-2
  • He leads the Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform

A Ukrainian boxer known as "Dr. Ironfist" announced Thursday he plans to run for the country's presidency in 2015, the state-run Ukrinform News Agency reported.

"I want to say that I cannot be intimidated or stopped," Vitali Klitschko, 42, said from the Ukrainian parliament rostrum in the capital city of Kiev. "In order to put an end to various attempts to get rid of me as a possible candidate, I want to say that I'm running for president."

He added: "I have a residence permit in Germany, but this doesn't violate the Ukrainian legislation, and I've always been a citizen of Ukraine."

In addition to having amassed a professional record of 47 wins (41 by knockout) and two losses, the 6-foot, 7½-inch heavyweight is the leader of the Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform party.

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According to Klitschko's website, he won the World Boxing Organization's world heavyweight title in 1999 by knocking out Herbie Hide in round 2, and -- following in the steps of Muhammad Ali, Evander Holyfield and Lennox Lewis -- has won a heavyweight belt three times.

He has run twice for mayor of Kiev, holds a master's degree in social development, a doctorate in sport science, is married and has three children.

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