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Russia

Reports Of Possible Russian Election Violations Vary Wildly

Officials from the ruling United Russia party say the election should serve as "a model for other countries" in terms of transparency.
Officials from the ruling United Russia party say the election should serve as "a model for other countries" in terms of transparency.
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By RFE/RL
Voting is continuing in Russia's presidential election amid sharply contrasting reports on possible violations and irregularities.

Officials from the ruling United Russia party said the election should serve as "a model for other countries" in terms of transparency.

Georgy Fyodorov, a member of the Kremlin-controlled  Public Chamber advisory organ, said the election was better organized than the December legislative polls in terms of technology and procedures.

Police across the country reported no substantial violations.

However, the independent Golos election monitor said some 3,000 violations had been reported.

'Unprecedented Carousel Voting'

Opposition blogger Aleksei Navalny told the independent Dozhd Internet television channel the scale of carousel voting -- where people cast multiple ballots at different polling stations -- was "absolutely unprecedented":

"We know that Moscow Oblast ran out of absentee ballots several days ago," he said."It was impossible to get an absentee ballot in Moscow. All of these absentee ballots were distributed among these brigades, which have been seen in large numbers today."

An RFE/RL correspondent in Moscow Oblast, reported suspected carousel voting in the Moscow suburb of Pushkino.

"Citizens with absentee ballots are being brought en masse to the polling stations," she said. "People are being taken by bus, in an organized fashion, from a gathering point at the VDNKh metro station in Moscow to the polling station at a sporting venue in Pushkino."

Central Election Commission Deputy Chairman Stanislav Vavilov said his agency "has information" that hundreds of reports of election violations had been written in advance of the voting and would be sent to the authorities "in the coming days."

He said those preparing such complaints are not interested in "matters of objectivity or law."

Web Cameras, Hacker Attacks

Following allegations of possible falsification during the December 2011 legislative elections, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin ordered the installation of web cameras at all polling stations.

Communications Minister Igor Shchegolev told journalists on March 4 that the monitoring system had experienced several hacker attacks, including some allegedly originating in Japan and the United States, but that monitoring had not been interrupted.

He said that, on average, some 400,000 were watching the channel.

WATCH: Alleged ballot stuffing recorded on a polling-station web camera in Daghestan and posted on YouTube by an Internet activist


State Duma Deputy Vladimir Burmatov, of the ruling United Russia party, said the web-cameras had prevented "99 percent" of possible violations and rejected allegations of carousel voting.

Central Election Commission head Vladimir Churov offered to help the United States and France set up similar systems for their upcoming elections.

Russian news agencies report that there will be 685 accredited election observers, 219 from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe's Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights.

Polls have closed in the Far East and vote counting has begun.

Voter turnout nationally is about 48 percent so far, the Central Election Commission has reported.

With reporting by Interfax and ITAR-TASS
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Comments
     
by: susan from: USA
March 04, 2012 15:55
This article makes a big fuss about ''busses filled up with voters" carouseled around, but did anyone ever identified for which candidate those false votes are intendent? It is assumed, by author, for Putin..
Who's the author trying to fool?

by: Jack from: US
March 04, 2012 16:24
RFE/RL lies that "Golos" is "independent election monitor". In other article the same "Golos" was exposed as being funded by US government. So how is it "independent"? Whoever pays orders the music, as one Russian saying goes.

by: Eugenio from: Vienna
March 04, 2012 18:43
I would like to congratulate Vladimir Putin with an impressive victory in the first round of the Presidential election in Russia and wish him further successful resistance against the arrogant ambition of the people who - for some strange reason - decided that they are actually someone to tell others how to live and how not to, what to do and what not to: against the nation of those, 40 per cent of whom have still not figured out where Canada is.
And yes, Senator McCain, you got your gringo ... kicked again. Long live Russia and Vietnam - free from McCains :-)))!!!
VIDEO - Election 2012: Russia votes, Putin wins: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9686RwFvouU&list=UUpwvZwUam-URkxB7g4USKpg&index=1&feature=plcp
In Response

by: Rick from: USA
March 05, 2012 04:11
Congratulations President Putin! You are a man of strength and power which the west cannot control like puppet so called leaders throughout the world. As an American, I agree with you Eugenio that at least 40-50 percent of Americans could'nt fing Canada on a map, but yet they think they're international experts like the angry, bitter, old John McCain who is nothing but a war monger sitting in his mansion in Arizona. I wish Mr. Putin all the best as he is the only one to keep the US from taking over the world by force.

by: rik from: milan
March 04, 2012 20:05
Putin crying in front of his supporters
in Manejnaya square meeting :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vEzs-I16F6w&feature=player_embedded#!

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