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Russian parliament meets despite poll protests

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Russian parliament meets despite poll protests


Russia’s lower house of parliament, the State Duma, has convened for the first time since this month’s elections sparked widespread protests.

In a break with tradition, the oldest deputy announced the results as proceedings got underway.

Opposition parties had threatened to walk out if the head of the central electoral commission tried to do so.

Outside parliament in the latest demonstration against alleged electoral fraud, up to 25 people were arrested.

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s United Russia party won only a slim majority in the Duma. But as he prepares a return to the presidency next year, Putin will be satisfied with Wednesday’s events in parliament, where his close political ally Sergei Naryshkin was elected speaker of the chamber.

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