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Russian journalist and TV host Ksenia Sobchak says she plans to run for president

Sobchak is the daughter of the former St. Petersburg mayor who was once a political mentor to Russian leader Vladimir Putin

MOSCOW, October 18. /TASS/. Journalist and TV host Ksenia Sobchak on Wednesday announced plans to run for Russian president next year.

"My name is Ksenia Sobchak. I am running for Russian president," she said on her pre-election website.

Sobchak, 35, is the daughter of late Anatoly Sobchak, the first democratically elected mayor of St. Petersburg who was once a political mentor to Russian leader Vladimir Putin.

The presidential election in Russia will take place on March 18, 2018. The election campaign will start between December 7 and 17. The country’s political parties are expected to hold congresses to nominated their candidates after the Federation Council [upper house of parliament] sets the election date in December.

According to the Russian presidential election law, both parliamentary and non-parliamentary parties are eligible to nominate candidates, but each non-parliamentary party needs to collect at least 100,000 voters’ signatures in support of its candidate. Besides, a Russian citizen has the right to register as an independent presidential candidate provided he or she collects at least 300,000 signatures.

Russia’s Central Election Commission said earlier that since the election campaign had not been launched officially yet, no one could be regarded as a candidate. After the campaign is launched, the Commission will start to consider documents provided by those planning to become presidential candidates.