Analysts say March election’s outcome is a foregone conclusion after the Russian leader sidelined nearly all his opponents
Russian President Vladimir Putin confirmed he would run for re-election next year, a widely expected decision for which he has been preparing long before his war in Ukraine and that could keep him in power until at least 2030.
Putin made the announcement at a ceremony for military personnel Friday, the day after the upper house of parliament set the election for March 17. In a video clip posted on the Kremlin’s Telegram messenger channel, a guest asked Putin to run for reelection, and the Russian leader agreed.
Russian election officials announced Friday that the 2024 presidential race will be held over three days, the first time that multi-day voting has been used for a presidential election.
“Three-day voting is already becoming a tradition in our electoral system,” said Russia’s Central Election Commission (CEC) chairwoman Ella Pamfilova.
“It was first used during the [Covid-19] pandemic, but over time the majority of voters came to like the format because of its other advantages,” Pamfilova said.
Critics argue that extended voting periods make it easier to commit voter fraud, as it becomes harder for monitors and poll workers to do their jobs ensuring there are no irregularities, and ballot boxes are stored at polling stations overnight.