ST. PETERSBURG -- The head of the local chapter of Aleksei Navalny's Anti-Corruption Foundation says he has been removed from the list of registered candidates for the upcoming municipal elections.
Aleksandr Shurshev and another candidate, journalist Maksim Kuzakhmetov, were removed from the list following a St. Petersburg court order, Shurshev tweeted on August 15.
"We will keep fighting and winning. The first hearing of the [appeal] court is tomorrow," Shurshev wrote.
On August 14, eight candidates representing the Yabloko party, the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia, and independent hopefuls, were removed from the list of registered candidates.
The moves came after members of the ruling United Russia party complained that the candidates were registered after a June 30 deadline, but St. Petersburg’s election commission had prolonged the registration period to July 14.
The registration of opposition and independent candidates to the September 8 municipal elections in St. Petersburg and Moscow has become a hot topic in recent weeks as activists rallied in Russia’s two largest cities to demand fair polls.
In Moscow, rallies held each of the past four Saturdays to demand that officials allow independent candidates on the ballot in the vote have resulted in thousands of arrests.