Free and fair?
27 September 2004 -- A group of current and former deputies to Russia's parliament filed a lawsuit today requesting that the country's Supreme Court annul the most recent parliamentary elections.
The deputies allege that the United Russia, supported by the Kremlin, enjoyed an unfair advantage in media coverage and deceived voters about politicians running on its ticket.
United Russia took more than 300 seats in the 450-seat lower house of parliament in those elections.
Vladimir Ryzhkov, an independent deputy who helped prepare the lawsuit, said that "even if we suppose the results were fair, what preceded them was a disgrace."
The deputies said they did not expect the Supreme Court to annul the elections, but the group wanted to draw attention to the matter.
An annulment of the December election results would require new parliamentary elections to be held.