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Putin Critic Navalny's Presidential Bid Blocked by Election Body

  • Central Election Commission cites Navalny’s criminal record
  • Opposition leader calls for ‘voters’ strike’ in protest
Alexei Navalny

Alexei Navalny

Photographer: Evgeny Feldman/ Navalny Campaign via AP Images

Russia’s Central Election Commission refused to register opposition leader Alexei Navalny as a candidate in the 2018 presidential elections, confirming warnings that he wouldn’t be allowed on the ballot because of a criminal conviction. 

Navalny, an anti-corruption activist and outspoken critic of President Vladimir Putin, has denounced the case against him as a politically motivated effort to keep him off the ballot. The European Court of Human Rights pronounced his conviction illegal, but he was re-tried and found guilty on the same charges and given a five-year suspended sentence in February.