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Russia’s Communists to hold congress to nominate candidate for presidency

December 23, 2017, 3:03 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The party’s choice this time is Pavel Grudinin, 57, the director of the closed joint-stock company Lenin State Farm located near Moscow

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Director of the closed joint-stock company Lenin State Farm Pavel Grudinin

Director of the closed joint-stock company Lenin State Farm Pavel Grudinin

© Sergei Bobilev/TASS

MOSCOW, December 23. /TASS/. Delegates of the Congress of Russia’s largest leftwing organization, the Communist Party of the Russian Federation /CPRF/, are expected to consider nomination of a party candidate for the 2018 presidential race.

The party’s choice this time is Pavel Grudinin, 57, the director of the closed joint-stock company Lenin State Farm located near Moscow.

On Friday, a plenary session of the CPRF Central Committee passed a unanimous recommendation to the Congress to endorse Grudinin as a candidate for presidency. At the same time, it proposed to make party leader Gennady Zyuganov chief of the Supreme Council of Popular and Patriotic Forces, which will become Grudinin’s election staff.

The council that will be formed for steering the Communist candidate’s campaign will have from 35 to 40 members. It will include the most authoritative Communists and representative of leftwing patriotic forces.

"The main issue for this congress is the CPRF’s participation in the presidential election race," Yuri Afonin, a deputy chairman of the party told TASS. He said Gennady Zyuganov would address the delegates with the Communists’ program for the forthcoming election.

Pavel Grudinin is not a member of any political party but he will represent the Communists and the broad popular and patriotic forces at the election. His nomination as a presidential candidate by the party simultaneously with making Gennady Zyuganov chairman of the Supreme Council of Popular and Patriotic forces "was met with much enthusiasm because it mean Zyuganov’s leading role during in the election campaign and his doubtless leadership in the party, Afonin said,

Zyuganov has been the CPRF’s candidate for presidency in all the elections where the party has taken part. The CPRF nominated a different person, Nikolai Kharitonov, in only one election in 2004.

As a party represented in parliament, the CPRF does not have to gather voters’ signatures.

The election will be held on March 18, 2018.

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