Find Us

Moscow bars pro-peace candidate from running in presidential election

Yekaterina Duntsova, 40-year-old independent politician, holds flowers and poses with supporters outside the Central Election Commission in Moscow, 23 December, 2023
Yekaterina Duntsova, 40-year-old independent politician, holds flowers and poses with supporters outside the Central Election Commission in Moscow, 23 December, 2023 Copyright ARDEN ARKMAN / AFP
By Euronews with AFP
Published on Updated
Share this articleComments
Share this articleClose Button
Copy/paste the article video embed link below:Copy to clipboardCopied

Yekaterina Duntsova, a former journalist and city councillor campaigning for peace and "democratic processes", was rejected by the Russian Central Electoral Committee as a potential candidate due to "errors in documents".


29 people may potentially qualify for a presidential candidate, said the Russian Central Electoral Comission (TsIK) on Saturday. 

As it is coming to the end of registrations for self-nominated candidates, officially recognised political parties still have a few more days. 

But Yekaterina Duntsova's application was rejected by Russia's Central Electoral Commission on Saturday due to "errors in documents".

The former journalist and city councillor campaigning "for peace and democratic processes", may no longer be able to present herself as a candidate.

The commission's chief, Ella Pamfilova, said the members unanimously rejected Duntsova's bid to stand in polls that President Vladimir Putin is expected to win comfortably.

Putin confirmed this month that he would participate in the election, scheduled to be held over three days beginning 15 March.

The commission said Duntsova could not go on to the next stage of gathering thousands of supporters' signatures.

Pamfilova told her: "You are a young woman, you have everything ahead of you."

Duntsova, 40, had filed documents to stand in the March race as an independent candidate. She was required to provide documents proving that a group of at least 500 people had held a meeting backing her.

"A people's initiative is not needed, is not welcomed," Duntsova told journalists afterwards, saying she would not have time to file another application as an independent candidate.

She wrote on social media that she would file an appeal against the ruling with the Supreme Court.

She also urged the leadership of the liberal party Yabloko to nominate her as its candidate.

Democratic opposition to sit out the election?

Yabloko, Russia's oldest democratic party that came to the fore as democratic opposition during the rule of Boris Yeltsin, "should not stand on the sidelines. Russians should have a choice", she wrote on Telegram.

Duntsova told journalists on Saturday "we are now waiting for some official, public answer on whether (Yabloko) are prepared to support me so we meet the deadline" of 1 January.

Yabloko's co-founder Grigory Yavlinsky said in a YouTube video broadcast on Saturday that the party is not nominating any candidate.


The 71-year-old was unable to comment on Duntsova's request for nomination, saying he "had no idea" about her.

Candidates from political parties lacking MPs in the national parliament, like Yabloko, have a less arduous procedure to participate than independents.

They have to gather signatures of 100,000 supporters by the end of January, while independent candidates have to find 300,000.

Duntsova said she was sure her supporters had no illusions about the outcome of the presidential "elections" in inverted commas.


But "you can't do nothing", she wrote on Telegram, since standing as a candidate is the "last legal opportunity for citizens to express their disagreement with the policies of the current authorities".

Pamfilova said Saturday that 29 people have filed to run for the presidency.

Such as Boris Nadezhdin, a lawmaker nominated by a "Civic initiative" party. Known as a "peace candidate", who has openly been calling to end the so-called "Special military operation", the war with Ukraine.

The Kremlin has for years sidelined opposition figures from elections and political life, a clampdown that accelerated after Putin ordered Russian troops into a full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022.

Share this articleComments

You might also like

Russian court issues arrest warrant for Yulia Navalnaya

US journalist Evan Gershkovich goes on trial in Russia

A year ago, Wagner chief Prigozhin's mutiny briefly threatened Putin