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Russia Mulls New Committee to Fight Western 'Election Meddling'

Vedomosti

Russia could dedicate a new parliamentary commission to stopping Western nations from influencing the country’s 2018 presidential elections.

The new group in Russia’s Federation Council, the upper house of the Russian parliament, would monitor foreign organizations and pass new legislation in a bid to halt “external interference,” the Kommersant newspaper reported Tuesday.

Konstantin Kosachev, the head of the Federation Council’s Committee on Foreign Affairs, said that the United States and its “NATO allies” had all carried out "systematic attempts" to influence Russian politics.

"There is no doubt that during the run-up to the presidential elections in March next year, we're going to face some active and consistent attempts to influence the course of the vote," he told the Interfax news agency. "We'd like to see a permanent body that would monitor those attempts and improve current legislation."

The Federation Council will consider the proposal on Wednesday.

The first round of Russia's presidential elections are due to take place on March 18 , 2018. President Vladimir Putin has not yet announced whether he will run in the vote.

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