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The elections in the Coordination Council of the opposition extended for a day

October 22, 2012, 12:40 UTC+3

The voting was to end back on Sunday evening, but over hacking attacks, the website was suspended

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The electronic elections in the Coordination Council of the opposition that is a collective body, which should rule the protest actions, began last weekend. The voting was to end back on Sunday evening, but over hacking attacks, the website was suspended. The experts named the vote counting procedure quite dubious.

The elections in the Coordination Council of the opposition were held in the Internet last Saturday and Sunday, but the voting was decided to extend until Monday evening over the cyber attack, the Nezavisimaya Gazeta daily cited the organizers of the elections as saying. However, the observers doubt that this fact became the only reason for extending the elections and the elections will compulsorily end on Monday. The experts are convinced that the elections in the Coordination Council were initiated with the only goal that is to form “a puppet structure” to give a new status to blogger Alexei Navalny. However, the observers believe that this is quite insufficient for Navalny to become a serious politician.

For instance, Professor of the Higher School of Economics Oleg Matveichev believes that it was decided to extend the voting over the need to get a necessary result in favour of Alexei Navalny, “Usually when the voting is delayed at a polling station over technical problems, the opposition makes an awful uproar, now they delay the voting themselves to have the election results in favour of Navalny.” The expert believes that the organizers sacrificed fair elections a long time ago for political expediency.

President of the Institute of National Strategy Mikhail Remizov, who is quoted by the newspaper, believes, “The Coordination Council is needed for Navalny to legitimatize him as the leader of the opposition.” This is not a structure, which the civil society initiated; the main goal of forming the Coordination Council is to form the so-called “puppet” structure for Navalny. The initiative is not new. This is mainly some kind of previous projects of the off-system opposition that were launched for some leaders of the opposition. For instance, in 2006 it was stated about the creation of the Russian People’s Democratic Union led by Mikhail Kasyanov, and in late 2008 Boris Nemtsov’s Solidarity Movement was formed and others.

By Sunday evening over 51,000 people voted, 168,000 people registered as opposition voters, the RBC daily reported. So, “the turnout” has reached about 30% by this time over disrupted voting on Saturday. Meanwhile, 93,000 people verified themselves (they confirmed their participation). Despite some forecasts the law enforcers visited and complicated the work only at several polling stations.

Organizer of the elections Leonid Volkov told the RBC daily that he hopes that the elections will end on Monday. The hackers have prepared very well and therefore could have created some problems, he said. The fact that the law enforcers did not show special interest to the elections is caused by the fact that a greater part of the election procedure of the opposition is conducted in the Internet, he said. In general, Volkov remained satisfied with the elections, which he organized. The first election results on Monday will set final guidelines in the opposition strategy.

Deputy Ilya Ponomarev regretted that the refusal from the paper voting cut off a large chunk of the leftist electorate from the elections as the latter do not have the access to the Internet, the Moskovsky Komsomolets daily reported. For two days before the voting Ponomarev withdrew from the election race, and the lack of the ballot boxes along the excessive “virtualization” of the Coordination Council became the main reasons for his dropping from the election race. “The Coordination Council will become a body of the Internet users, political activities of which are expressed in writing the comments and making the likes,” he wrote in his blog.

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