A third candidate for the presidency of Russia withdrew from the electoral race

FILE PHOTO: A view shows Red Square with Lenin’s Mausoleum as the Russian flag flies on the dome of the Kremlin Senate building in Moscow, Russia, June 24, 2023. REUTERS/Evgenia Novozhenina/File Photo ( EVGENIA NOVOZHENINA/)

The independent candidate for the Russian presidential elections Anatoli Batashov this Wednesday became the third to withdraw from the electoral race two months before the elections.scheduled for next March.

Batashov, a well-known blogger who represents the Greens, made the decision after going to the headquarters of the country’s Central Electoral Commission (CEC) with the necessary documents to carry out his registration, although he has finally decided not to present them. The candidate had to gather at least 300,000 signatures.

“I am not going to continue in this 2024 cycle. Yes, we have done a colossal job, we have done the impossible. None of the Green politicians had risen so high. “I am the first green candidate in history to run in the Russian presidential elections,” he said during a press conference before announcing his withdrawal, as reported by several Russian media.

Thus, he pointed out that today was the last day to present the necessary documents for the registration of the candidacy and regretted “not being ready”, although he specified the number of signatures that he has managed to collect.

His decision comes shortly after the founder of the Russian Party of Freedom and Justice, Andrei Bogdanov, also announced that he was withdrawing, a measure that was previously joined by Sergei Baburin, who has confirmed that he will support the current president, Vladimir Putin. The elections are scheduled to begin on March 15 and last until the 17th, allowing citizens to vote for the first time during a period of three days.

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at a meeting with campaign activists in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2024. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, Pool)
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at a meeting with campaign activists in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2024. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, Pool) (Alexander Zemlianichenko/)

There are currently four candidates whose application has been registered by the CEC: Leonid Slutski, for the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR), Nikolai Jaritonov, for the Communist Party of Russia (KPRF), Vladislav Davankov, for New People, and Putin , which is presented independently.

In addition, among the potential candidates there is still Anatoli Batashev, independent, Sergei Malinkovich, for the Communists of Russia party, and Boris Nadezhdin, from Civic Initiative and critical of the invasion of Ukraine.

The CEC, which has already rejected the registration of four other candidates, must decide on the registration of the candidates by February 10. Russian legislation requires candidates from extra-parliamentary formations to present at least 100,000 signatures, while for independents, including Putin himself, the bar rises to 300,000. The president has completed the process without problems.

Putin formally registered as a candidate

Russian President Vladimir Putin registered on Monday as a candidate for the presidential elections on March 17, in which he will run for re-election for a fifth six-year term in front of the Kremlin.

The decision adopted by the CEC indicates that on January 29 at 11 hours and 23 minutes, Vladimir Putin, born in 1952, was registered as a candidate for the position of president of the Russian Federation.

The electoral commission specified that it had only detected 0.15% of invalid signatures (91) – the maximum allowed is 5% – among the 60,000 analyzed.

Putin’s team reported days ago that it had collected more than two million signatures, although the opposition to the Kremlin questioned this, since, they claim, no one has seen queues in front of the presidential administration headquarters throughout the country.

The current Russian leader, who has led this country since 2000 -with a four-year hiatus as prime minister (2008-12)- runs as an independent candidatebut has received support from the Kremlin’s United Russia party, which controls both houses of the Russian Parliament.

(With information from Europa Press)