MOSCOW, September 30 (Itar-Tass) — State Duma deputy Alexei Zhuravlev has been elected chairman of the Rodina (Motherland) party that on Saturday announced the restoration of its party status. At the party congress he was elected unanimously.
Zhuravlev was elected to the State Duma lower house of parliament from the All-Russia People’s Front (ONF) and he is a member of the United Russia faction. Speaking to journalists on the sidelines of the congress, the MP did not rule out that Rodina will continue to cooperate with ONF. “If ONF continues to work in the same format as it is now, we will actively interact with it,” he said.
The party’s governing bodies were also formed - the Presidium of 15 members, its bureau (five members) and the Political Council, which comprises the heads of 73 regional offices of the party. Sergei Shishkarev was elected Chairman of the Presidium of the Political Council.
The Rodina party, liquidated in 2006 in connection with the creation of A Just Russia announced on Saturday that it restores its organisational and political independence. The decision on the re-establishment of the party was made at the founding congress attended by 136 delegates from 59 regions.
“Rodina considers is main political goal the struggle for power and respect for fellow citizens,” says its manifesto, released at the Congress of the restored party. “The experiment with the existence within A Just Russia is over.”
The Congress manifesto also emphasises that the party “enters the arena of political struggle under the banner of national patriotism and recognises the political force of all its documents and policy statements of the 2004-2006 period.” “We are the successor of the Rodina of 2004,” said Zhuravlev who also proposed to recognise the validity of the old party membership cards.
Rodina was created in 2004 on the basis of the electoral bloc of the same name that, led by Dmitry Rogozin who is now deputy prime minister, won at the 2003 Duma elections about 9 percent of the votes and its own faction in the parliament. In 2006, because of differences in the leadership Rogozin quit the party, which soon ceased to exist, joining A Just Russia.
Rodina or Motherland-National Patriotic Union was one of the four parties that controlled seats in the Russian legislature in 2003–2007. It was a coalition of 30 nationalist and left-wing groups that was established by Dmitry Rogozin, Sergei Glazyev, Sergei Baburin, Viktor Gerashchenko, Georgy Shpak, Valentin Varennikov and others in August 2003. The party's ideology combined socialist and nationalist ideas. Its headquarters were located in Moscow. In the 2003 Duma elections, Rodina won 9.2 percent of the vote and ended up with 37 of the 450 seats in the Duma.
Earlier, the Party of Pensioners and People’s Party of Russia announced that they secede from A Just Russia and restore their party status.
Rogozin had proposed to restore the Rodina party last autumn. Speaking then at the inaugural congress of the movement Motherland - Congress of Russian Communities, he accused the leader of A Just Russia Sergei Mironov of the party’s forcible takeover.
On Saturday, the founding conference of the Voluntary Special Purpose Movement (DON) in support of the army and navy was held before the Rodina congress. Its delegates expressed their readiness to interact with the Rodina party. The conference was attended by Rogozin who is in charges of the defence industry in the RF government. However, Rogozin did not attend the Rodina congress.