Strong showing for opposition in Moscow city election

Opposition declares tactical victory as ruling party loses 13 seats on Moscow city council

However, the party still retained its majority in the Moscow assembly following Sunday's nationwide local elections, and its candidates for regional governor appeared to have won in St Petersburg and in 15 other parts of the vast country.

The Moscow vote follows opposition rallies which sprang up after election officials disqualified numerous liberal candidates, citing failure to collect enough signatures of genuine voters.nearly every weekend, since late July, tens of thousands joined authorized and unauthorized protests, some of which ended up in scuffles with police.

With all the votes counted, candidates supported by the ruling United Russia party lost out to the opposition in 20 of the city's 45 voting districts. In 2014, United Russia won 28 seats, as well as 10 additional seats won by independents backed by the party.

Dariya Besedina, a triumphant Yabloko candidate, said: "These weren't real elections - lots of candidates who would clearly have won weren't allowed to run".

The three parties are nominally in opposition, but often back the Kremlin's initiatives. The leader of United Russia in Moscow, Andrei Metelsky, used to be amongst the losers. Moscow's city council has relatively little power and its election does not usually garner this much attention.

At more than 60 per cent, Putin's own popularity rating is much higher than most Western leaders, though lower than it has been previously. "But in general for the country the party showed its political leadership", Peskov said.

Mayor Sergei Sobyanin, who hoped to create a trouble-free campaign this summer by forcing Navalny's allies off the ballot, instead presided over large street protests and a brutal police crackdown.

Navalny's allies were excluded from the election over alleged irregularities and he has put forward a Smart Voting plan.

Bianca Andreescu upsets Serena Williams in US Open final
She is also still looking for her first championship - major or otherwise - after returning from the birth of her daughter. She's playing one match for history. "It's so hard to explain (what the win means) in words", Andreescu said.

The Liberal Democratic Party won all but one seat in the Khabarovsk City Duma and dominated in several other local elections including the mayoral vote.

However, the elections weren't all bad news for Putin. Russians vote in local and regional elections on September 8, 2019.

The tenure of Beglov, appointed to his post on an interim basis previous year by Putin, has been plagued by gaffes and questions of competence in running the liberal-minded city. There were reports on social media about violations by various activists which can't be independently verified.

Reuters was not able to immediately reach Google or Facebook for comments.

He said: "I'm exhausted of United Russia, stealing and everything that follows".

In a statement, European Union spokesperson Maja Kocijancic said, "anybody elected in the Crimean Peninsula claiming to "represent" the populations of Crimea and Sevastopol will not be recognized as representatives of those territories, which are Ukrainian".

With most opposition candidates disqualified, the Communists, independents and others gained seats.

Moscow authorities chose to ban opposition candidates from running in the election in the summer, for dubious reasons including claims that some had petitioned to run using signatures of people who didn't exist or had died. But it is misguided, Stanovaya reported, "to believe the communists are a party that constantly plays the video game with the Kremlin, that they are under Kremlin handle".

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