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MOSCOW, February 7 (Itar-Tass) —— Self-nominated presidential candidate Mikhail Prokhorov refused to participate in televised debates with the agent of another candidate, Vladimir Putin, the press-secretary of Prokhorov’s election team, Olga Stukalova said.
“Mikhail Prokhorov will not participate in debates with proxies. He would confront only the candidates themselves. This is a firm position of his and a position of his election team,” Stukalova told the Russian News Service radio station.
The first televised debates between the presidential candidates were held on Monday night, with Prokhorov and Communist Party Leader Gennady Zyuganov taking part.
Prime Minister Vladimir Putin will not participate in the debates. As his press-secretary Dmitry Peskov said, participation in debates “implies certain formalities – such as taking a vacation.”
“Doing that each time would interfere with doing his job right,” Peskov said.
In debates Putin will be represented by his proxies (their 499-name list was registered by the CEC on February 6).
Historian Natalya Narochnitskaya was the first to have entered the duel. Her opponent was Liberal Democrat leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky.
In a simular manner, Sergey Mironov, the leader of the Just Russia Party announced that he will not participate in election debates with the agents of the United Russia candidate Vladimir Putin.
“I am not prepared to confront proxies,” he told Itar-Tass, adding that he was ready to put questions to Putin personally.
“As for his agents, they will confront my agents,” Mironov added, adding that the law envisaged such a possibility.