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LDPR leader criticizes televised debates ahead of election

November 10, 2011, 15:32 UTC+3
Vladimir Zhirinovsky criticized on Thursday the schedule of holding televised debates ahead of the parliamentary election
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MOSCOW, November 10 (Itar-Tass) — Russian Liberal Democratic Party leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky criticized on Thursday the schedule of holding televised debates ahead of the parliamentary election as well as the line-up of the team of United Russia debaters.

At a meeting with the head of the OSCE/ODIHR Election Observation Mission for the December 4 State Duma elections, Heidi Tagliavini on Thursday, Zhirinovsky said it was incorrect that leaders of opposition parties should meet in debates with rank and file members of the United Russia party. “They compel us to participate in debates, while there are people of an absolutely different status on the other side. This humiliates us, I believe this is incorrect,” Zhirinovsky stressed.

He also criticized the time schedule chosen for debates. “Debates in the morning – at 7 a.m. People are asleep. Then at half-past-seven in the evening. People are on their way home after work. At night they end at 11:30 p.m. What is that?” he said with indignation.

“But this is for all. Equal conditions,” Tagliavini said. “For all, yes, but what’s good about it? The time of discussions does not suit us,” he said. According to Zhirinovsky, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m/ would be an ideal time for live discussions.

At the request of Heidi Tagliavini, Zhirinovsky spoke about the main provisions of LDPR’s election program. He also stated that there could be “obvious violations” during the election in some regions.

The OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights will send to the parliamentary election in Russia 200 observers. Forty of them will work on a long-term basis, while 160 – directly on the Election Day. These “short-term observers will be sent to regions – from Vladivostok, Khabarovsk to Kaliningrad and Krasnodar,” she explained.

Observers will make public their preliminary report on the election on December 5.

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