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Donetsk Leader Says Election Primaries Scheduled for Autumn

Alexander Zakharchenko

Public primaries in all Donetsk districts are scheduled for September and October, the Donetsk News Service reported Monday, citing the leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DNR), Alexander Zakharchenko.

“Citizens of the [republic's] capital will choose the most worthy candidates for participation in local elections, provided by the Minsk agreements,” Zakharchenko was quoted as saying by the Donetsk News Service.

According to an unidentified source close to the republic’s leader, the decision to hold primaries was made during Zakharchenko’s Sunday meeting with President Vladimir Putin's aide Vladislav Surkov, who approved the idea.

The public primaries as a democratic and open procedure “will cause a positive reaction in Russia, the European Union and the United States,” according to Denis Pushilin, chairman of the DNR People’s Council, Donetsk News Service reported.

If the primaries are successful in Donetsk, they will be also conducted in the republic's other large cities.

Elections may be carried out by the end of the year or in the first half of the next year, Zakharchenko said, Donetsk News Service reported.

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