Putin urges Russians to vote in polls



President Vladimir Putin on Thursday urged Russians to vote in parliamentary elections later this week in which most vocal Kremlin critics have been barred from running.

“I count on your responsible, balanced, patriotic civic position,” Putin said in a video address published overnight on the Kremlin website.

Putin’s United Russia party is widely expected to retain its majority in the lower house State Duma after the election.

Serious Kremlin critics — including allies of jailed opposition leader Alexei Navalny — have been barred from running in the vote, which is taking place over three days from Friday to Sunday.—AFP


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