Russian opposition leaders denounce elections

Russian opposition leaders denounced elections on Sunday dominated by the pro-Kremlin United Russia party as fraudulent after casting their ballots in Moscow.

Russian opposition leaders denounce elections
Communist Party leader Gennady Zyuganov said the election had been 'the toughest and least democratic' ever held in post-Soviet Russia and there had been 'numerous violations,' ITAR-TASS news agency reported.

Boris Nemtsov, one of the leaders of the Union of Right Forces whose party has declared him a candidate to challenge Vladimir Putin in presidential elections next year, said the elections were like a 'police operation.'

'These are the most dishonest elections in the history of Russia.... What's happening is an operation to rape the citizens of Russia,' Nemtsov said after casting his vote in another part of Moscow.

'Of course these elections are rigged from the start,' said Garry Kasparov, a former chess champion and head of The Other Russia opposition movement, outside a polling station in the city centre.

Kasparov, who spent five days in jail this week for holding an unauthorised anti-Kremlin march, said he had spoiled his ballot by writing The Other Russia on it as a form of protest against elections that he has dubbed a 'farce.'

He also said he would lay flowers outside the offices of the Central Election Commission (CEC) in Moscow on Monday to mourn the death of Russian democracy.

The Kremlin has dismissed critics, saying the election will be fully democratic. Putin has called his pro-Western critics and opponents 'jackals.'


Güncelleme Tarihi: 02 Aralık 2007, 18:01