The opposition candidate in the Primorsky Krai gubernatorial election rejected the polling results on the morning of Monday, September 17. Andrey Ishchenko, the candidate from the Communist Party, claimed that the vote was tampered with after losing the runoff to United Russia’s candidate Andrey Tarasenko. On Monday morning, Ishchenko and about 200 other people gathered in Vladivostok to protest the results. In a social media post, Ishchenko declared he has started an indefinite hunger strike and called for supporters to rally at Vladivostok’s central square. Associated demonstrations are possible in the coming hours and days. Heightened security measures and traffic disruptions are expected around all protest sites.
According to polling results on Sunday, September 16, Ishchenko was leading the election with 51.6 percent of the vote compared to Tarasenko's 45.8 percent with 95 percent of voting precincts reporting. However, Tarasenko received a significant boost in the final hours of voting, eventually winning with 49.5 percent over Ishcenko's 48.06 percent. Opposition supporters claim that the results were altered in favor of Tarasenko.
Individuals in Vladivostok are advised to monitor the situation and avoid all protests as a precaution.
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