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Russian Police Scuffle With Protesters In Astrakhan

Russian police cordon off activists in Astrakhan on April 10.
MOSCOW -- Police have scuffled with opposition activists in Russia's southern city of Astrakhan, amid tensions over the disputed results of a local election.

The activists rallied in support of Oleg Shein from the leftist A Just Russia Party who, according to official results, lost to a candidate from the ruling United Russia party in the March 4 election for city mayor.

Shein says the election was rigged and together with a group of supporters he launched a hunger strike 25 days ago.

Currently, 22 activists are refusing food to demand a new election.

Anticorruption blogger Aleksei Navalny joined protesters in Astrakhan on April 10.

Prosecutors said a probe confirmed violations at some polling stations but said they were not widespread and could not influence the outcome of the election.

With reporting by Interfax, AP, and AFP