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Russia's President: Alleged Vote Fraud Will Be Investigated

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev stands in front of a giant picture of Tsar Michael of Russia.
Michal Cizek
AFP/Getty Images
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev stands in front of a giant picture of Tsar Michael of Russia.

Reacting to widespread protests, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said alleged vote fraud of parliamentary elections will be investigated.

The AP reports:

Medvedev told reporters Thursday — after meeting Czech counterpart Vaclav Klaus — that the law may have been violated during Sunday's vote, because "our electoral law is not ideal."

He called for Russians to remain calm during any inquiry, adding that "experts, not ordinary people" would investigate.

Medvedev said he can understand some people are disappointed with the result, but "the outcome fully corresponds with estimates from analysts and public polls."

According to Russia Today, Medvedev also said the protests were "a manifestation of democracy," and while protesters should obey the orders of police, "at the same time, I believe that people should have an opportunity to express their opinion. If they want to have their say on elections – it is fine."

Medvedev is expected to trade places with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who is vying to return to the presidency. Elections are scheduled for March, but in the past few weeks, Putin has faced what analysts call the biggest challenge to his rule.

As we reported yesterday, a big protest is scheduled for the weekend.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.
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