Coalition Rallies the Opposition

The Other Russia coalition is calling on everyone to join in the upcoming “Dissenter’s March,” and to vote for the opposition in December State Duma elections.

In a press conference on November 1st, leaders of the Other Russia coalition, including Garry Kasparov and Eduard Limonov, called on all opposition forces to participate in upcoming “Dissenter’s Marches,” in order to express their discontent for “elections without choice.”

The speakers asked all of Russia’s opposition political parties to join the protests, regardless of their plans or role in the elections of the State Duma in December. The “Marches” will take place in Moscow on November 24th, starting in Pushkin square at 1pm, and will continue in St. Petersburg on the following day.

Kasparov announced that the major slogans of the demonstrations will be: “Russia without Putin!” , “No to elections without choice!” and “Your time is up!”

Lev Ponomapev, the head of the NGO and movement “For Human Rights,” said that in his opinion, all political forces should join hands for the protest in Moscow, including those boycotting the elections, and those participating. He noted that all of these organizations are becoming marginalized by the Kremlin’s monopolization of power.

The leaders then encouraged supporters to write in “the Other Russia” on their ballots, in order to show their discontent with the electoral system. The Central Electoral Commission (CEC) has refused to register the Other Russia’s candidate list, and the coalition will not appear on the ballot.

One journalist asked the speakers whether they feared a legal rebuke in their campaign for writing in names on the ballot. Kasparov responded with a reference to recent statements by Vladimir Churov, the head of the CEC, who has said that ruining ballots in an act of protest in completely legal.