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Elections: Political scientist: War is not a good campaign topic for the Kremlin

Elections: Political scientist: War is not a good campaign topic for the Kremlin

For Putin, his war of aggression against Ukraine is a top priority. In view of the upcoming election, which is intended to strengthen his power, one expert believes that this is not a suitable topic.

Two years after the invasion of Ukraine, Kremlin leader Vladimir Putin wants to strengthen his power in the much-criticized presidential election next weekend – but according to one expert, the war is not suitable as a campaign issue. “For him, of course, the issue is his top priority,” says the independent Russian political scientist Alexander Kynew to the dpa during an interview in Moscow. But war weariness is spreading among the Russian population. “Every conversation about the war leads to the question: When will it end?” says Kynew. “The state has no answer to this. That’s why it’s avoiding the discussion.”

Before the vote, which begins this Friday and in which Putin is virtually certain as the winner, there was “very, very little” election advertising anyway, Kynew explains. “There is a lot of Putin in the news every day.” However, the Kremlin chief is usually not shown in the role of a candidate, but rather “as a president who carries out his duties.”

It is becoming clear that – sometimes under pressure – those who vote for Putin’s retention of power should be brought to the ballot box: civil servants and employees of large, partly also state-owned companies.

Fifth term for Putin

The presidential election in Russia runs from March 15th to 17th and will most likely secure the 71-year-old Kremlin leader his fifth term in office. Kremlin opponents are calling for the result not to be recognized because democratic standards have long since ceased to be adhered to. Independent observers not only point out fraud and manipulation – but also that voting in occupied areas of Ukraine is illegal.

In addition, serious Russian opposition figures are either not allowed to vote, have fled abroad or are in prison camps. Putin therefore has no real opponents in this election.

Source: Stern

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