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Russian High Court Upholds Yabloko Ban In Election

MOSCOW -- The Russian Supreme Court has upheld a ban on the opposition Yabloko party taking part in upcoming elections to the Sverdlovsk Oblast Duma, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

Yabloko's press service told RFE/RL on March 12 that Yabloko filed a complaint with the Supreme Court against the Sverdlovsk Oblast Election Commission's refusal to register its candidates for the March 14 elections.

The election commission banned Yabloko from the elections because it said 50 percent of the signatures of the party's supporters appeared to be forged. The Sverdlovsk Oblast Court had upheld the commission's decision.

On March 9, the Supreme Court also rejected an appeal from Yabloko trying to overturn a ban on the party competing in the local elections in Kaluga Oblast.

Yabloko leaders and other opposition activists say the bans on the party are politically motivated.