Alexei Navalny, Russian opposition leader and Putin critic barred from presidential election
December 25, 2017
Russian opposition leader and anti-corruption blogger Alexei Navalny attends a memorial march marking the one-year anniversary of the assassination of Russian politician Boris Nemtsov in central Moscow, on February 27, 2016. Nemtsov, a former deputy prime minister in the government of Boris Yeltsin, was gunned down shortly before midnight on February 27, 2015, while walking across a bridge a short distance from the Kremlin with his Ukrainian model girlfriend. AFP PHOTO / KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV / AFP / KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV
Russia’s central election commission voted on Monday to bar opposition leader Alexei Navalny from running in a presidential election next year, saying he was ineligible because of a past criminal conviction.
The commission said the conviction, for which Navalny received a suspended sentence and which he has repeatedly described as politically-motivated, meant he could not run for president in March.
Twelve members of the 13-member commission voted to bar Navalny. One member of the commission abstained, citing a possible conflict of interest.
Polls show President Vladimir Putin is on course to be comfortably re-elected, meaning he could remain in power until 2024.
Navalny, 41, has been jailed three times this year and charged with breaking the law by repeatedly organizing public meetings and rallies.