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Anti-Putin candidate says court refuses to hear election ban appeal

Kremlin declines to comment if naval chief sacked
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Russian politician Boris Nadezhdin said Wednesday the country’s supreme court has refused to hear his appeal challenging his disqualification from next month’s presidential election.

The election is expected to hand an easy victory to President Vladimir Putin, with much of the opposition in exile or in jail, and after top opponent Alexei Navalny died in prison last week.

“The Supreme Court of the Russian Federation has turned down my claim to challenge the refusal to register,” Nadezhdin said on social media.

Nadezhdin, who stood on a platform to end the conflict in Ukraine, was barred from running by Russia’s Central Election Commission in February.

He received news of the Supreme Court’s decision from abroad, where he said he was “on holidays with the kids”.

“The last two months have probably been the hardest of my life,” he said Tuesday, announcing he was out of the country.

“We decided not to cancel a long-planned and long-awaited small trip for the whole family in an Asian country,” he said, adding he was still working on getting back on the ballot.

The electoral commission had said it found “irregularities” in some of the 105,000 signatures Nadezhdin submitted from people backing his candidacy, a decision that Nadezhdin appealed.

Ahead of the court’s decision, Nadezhdin’s team said the alleged “errors” found by the commission included minor typos that happened when handwritten submissions were digitised.

Since ordering troops into Ukraine in February 2022, Russia has tightened already strict laws against public dissent and detained thousands for speaking out against the offensive.

Putin, 71, has led Russia as either president or prime minister since the turn of the century and will not face any real opposition in the vote this March.


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Agence France-Presse (AFP) is a French international news agency headquartered in Paris, France. Founded in 1835 as Havas, it is the world's oldest news agency.

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