Communist Party rallies protesters in Moscow after accusing Russian authorities of vote rigging
On the evening of Monday, September 20, the Communist Party (KPRF) organized a rally in downtown Moscow opposing voting rigging in the State Duma elections. Having been denied permission to hold an authorized protest, the gathering on Pushkin Square was positioned as a meeting with voters.
Meduza’s correspondent estimated that around 200 people were gathered on the square, along with journalists. Communist Party candidates Valery Rashkin, Denis Parfenov, and Sergey Obukhov — who ran for the State Duma in Moscow’s single-mandate constituencies — addressed the crowd using sound equipment.
Rashkin promised that the Communists would continue protesting in the streets until election officials annul the results of electronic voting in the Russian capital.
Earlier in the day, police officers fenced off Pushkin Square with metal guard rails and parked paddy wagons nearby. At the time of this writing, law enforcement officers had not interfered with the gathering.
According to the official election results, nominal opposition candidates didn’t win the vote in any of Moscow’s single-mandate constituencies. What’s more, at least three candidates were in the lead until the final vote count factored in online ballots. Valery Rashkin, who heads the KPRF’s Moscow branch, was one of the candidates who lost after the online results were declared.
The Central Election Commission didn’t publish the results of online voting in Moscow until late in the afternoon on Monday, despite the fact that the e-voting results from other regions were declared within an hour of the polls closing. What’s more, the capital’s online voting tallies were buried in a general data set of results from all polling stations, making them very difficult to analyze.