Putin’s Party: Russian Election Marred By Allegations Of Fraud, Coercion

‘MOSCOW – Though more than a dozen parties are on the ballot for Russia’s parliamentary election Sunday, one would hardly know it. The pro-Kremlin United Russia (UR) party, whose standing has jumped more than 25 percent since President Vladimir Putin announced he would head its candidate list last month, could fairly win up to two-thirds of votes for the 450-seat State Duma, according to most polls.

‘But in what some experts say may be the least democratic election since the USSR collapsed, boycotted by Europe’s election-monitoring body, the campaign has been marred by complaints from opposition parties of official interference, seizure of campaign literature, the exclusion of some candidates from the ballot, and the sidelining of independent Russian poll observers.’


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