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Russia formalises Putin election win, dismissing criticism

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Russia President Vladimir Putin gestures as he delivers a speech throughout a gathering along with his authorised representatives for the presidential election marketing campaign within the Andreyevsky Hall of the Great Kremlin Palace, in Moscow, Russia, on March 20, 2024.
| Photo Credit: AP

Russia formalised Thursday President Vladimir Putin’s victory in final week’s presidential election, dismissing scathing criticism by the West and unbiased Russian observers that it was probably the most corrupt vote in post-Soviet historical past.

The three-day vote final weekend noticed Mr. Putin cruise to a straightforward victory for a fifth Kremlin time period, unchallenged by any significant opposition.

The election was additionally held in occupied Ukraine and voting befell two years into Moscow’s offensive.

Russia’s electoral chief Ella Pamfilova stated ultimate outcomes confirmed Mr. Putin received 87.28% of the vote.

She referred to as the election — which sees Mr. Putin’s 24-year rule prolonged by one other six years — “historic.”

Ms. Pamfilova stated turnout was 77.49%.

The Kremlin had inspired Russians to vote out of patriotic obligation, regardless of Mr. Putin’s win being inevitable.

The Russian chief thanked Russians for his or her “support” in an handle on Thursday after the ultimate outcomes have been revealed.

Ms. Pamfilova claimed a “very clean” election marketing campaign and dismissed Western criticism.

“This is not the first time we have heard this,” she stated.

Mr. Putin crushed three different hand-picked opponents, who every obtained tiny percentages of the vote.

None of them had overtly challenged Mr. Putin, however Ms. Pamfilova stated the vote was honest and aggressive.

“It is a different kind of opposition. They do not agree with everything and criticise things… But they are pro-Russian,” she stated.

“Unlike others who are anti-Russian opposition in the current conditions when there is a war,” she stated, seemingly referring to Mr. Putin’s opponents who’ve been pressured into exile.

Thousands took half within the opposition’s name to type lengthy queues at noon on the ultimate day of the vote.

The election was additionally marred by poll spoiling — with some throughout Russia pouring inexperienced dye in poll containers in protest.

Ms. Pamfilova stated “30 ballot boxes were covered in green dye” however stated “most (ballots) were saved.”

In his victory speech, Mr. Putin stated Russian poll spoilers needs to be “dealt with”.

On Wednesday, a court docket in Saint Petersburg ordered a lady who spoiled her poll to serve eight days in jail.

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