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Duma opposition calls at Moscow rally to pool efforts to hold honest presidential poll

January 21, 2012, 16:09 UTC+3

The rally that lasted one hour, ended without incidents

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MOSCOW, January 21 (Itar-Tass) — Representatives of three opposition parliamentary parties called on Saturday on their supporters to join hands to hold honest presidential elections.

The Russian Communist Party, Just Russia and the Russian Liberal Democratic Party jointly held a rally, permitted by authorities, in the Manezhnaya Square in Moscow downtown where around 1,500 people gathered.

Speaking first, leader of the Communist Party Gennady Zyuganov, registered as a presidential candidate, noted that Communists already now submit bills to the lower chamber of parliament, aimed at changing the election system in the country. “We call for forming election commissions on parity principles with other parties,” he stated.

“We should do all to reverse the situation. We and you can do this by pooling all efforts of people of the patriotic bloc,” the Communist leader called on his supporters.

Deputy head of Just Russia at the parliamentary faction Gennady Gudkov also reckons that “the time is high for all to come together”. “If we are together, we shall go together and shall win the victory,” he stressed.

In turn, representative of the Liberal Democratic Party and deputy of the State Duma Vladimir Ovsyannikov suggested specific measures of struggle with possible violators at the upcoming presidential elections on December 4.

In the legislator’s opinion, party activists should envelope tightly polling stations”, since responsibility for rigging the voting results will rest mostly on heads of election commissions. He called, given violations are exposed, for putting up pickets near houses of commission chairmen.

Left Front coordinator Sergei Udaltsov who recently came to agreement on cooperation with the Communist Party, called again on Communists to participate in a march and rally of the opposition scheduled for February 4. In Udaltsov’s opinion, it is necessary now to forget about differences and pool together all forces – right and left.

The rally that lasted one hour, ended without incidents. Its participants behaved themselves rather quietly, while police who ensured law and order – quite properly.

The press service of the Moscow police department told reporters that there were 1,500 people at the start of the rally in the Manezhnaya Square, and only 400 participants remained at the end of the event.

Another rally, sponsored by some nationalist associations, was staged on the Shevchenko Embankment in Moscow on Saturday. The press centre of the police department reported that there were around 800 people at the heat of this get-together.



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