Moscow official claims evidence of her involvement in forced voter registration is fake
The deputy head of Moscow’s Education Department, Marina Smirnitskaya, says that opposition leader Alexey Navalny published fake audio recordings of her voice. The recordings in question allegedly proved that Smirnitskaya was involved in forcing teachers to register to vote in the July 1 plebiscite on constitutional amendments.
“Someone hiding behind my name and workplace tried to pass themself off as me. At the very least this is unethical, and in general, to be honest, this is a crime,” Smirnitskaya said. She claims that only union representatives are carrying out “outreach” among teachers about voting, but “they are only doing this in an informative manner.”
On June 16, Alexey Navalny published an investigation, in which he explained that the Moscow authorities are coercing civil servants into registering for online voting ahead of Russia’s nationwide vote on constitutional amendments. The investigation features an audio recording, in which Smirnitskaya allegedly demands that an employee provide confirmation of voter registration.
As part of the investigation, Navalny published copies of data tables that apparently track the number of government employees who have registered to vote. These were allegedly sent to him from Moscow’s Department of Information Technology. If these documents prove to be authentic, it would incriminate the Moscow Mayor’s Office in what appears to be a campaign of forced voter registration among the capital’s civil servants.