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Shein Loses Election Appeals in 4 Astrakhan Courts

Former mayoral candidate Oleg Shein addressing a rally in Astrakhan

Four Astrakhan courts turned down new lawsuits filed by opposition politician Oleg Shein over alleged falsifications in the city's March mayoral election, a news report said Thursday.

Shein told Interfax that on the back of the verdicts, which were passed between Monday and Wednesday, he intended to appeal to the European Court of Human Rights.

All the district courts in the Volga city of roughly 500,000 people have now turned thrown out Shein's appeals.

According to official results, Just Russia candidate Shein received 30 percent of votes in the March 4 election, taking second place behind United Russia candidate Mikhail Stolyarov.

Shein said video footage from polling stations revealed numerous violations and went on a 40-day hunger strike in protest, winning support from protest leaders including anti-corruption campaigner Alexei Navalny in the process.

On reviewing the footage, Central Elections Commission head Vladimir Churov later admitted that violations had taken place but denied that there was any evidence of falsifications that could have tipped the vote in Shein's favor.

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