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Moscow To Check Electronic Votes for State Duma in Recount

Alexei Venediktov. Andrei Nikerichev / Moskva News Agency

Moscow will conduct a recount of disputed electronic votes for seats in Russia’s lower house of parliament that will have no legal force, the head of the Moscow election observation headquarters Alexei Venediktov told the state-run RIA Novosti news agency on Wednesday. 

"Everyone is asking about the technical group’s recount of the votes, this, of course, is not a legal recount, this is a reconciliation in order to confirm suspicions or not confirm suspicions that it was counted incorrectly," RIA quoted Venediktov as saying.

Russia’s opposition raised questions over the legitimacy of the results of the elections after the pro-Kremlin United Russia party won a landslide victory and took every district in Moscow.

E-voting results reversed early leads secured in the offline vote by opposition candidates and Kremlin-endorsed candidates saw huge swings in their favour and won every district after online votes were tallied. 

Independent data scientists and analysts said that half of all the votes attributed to United Russia in the official results were probably fake — a level of falsification previously unseen in Russian parliamentary elections.

Questions have also been raised over a significant delay in the publication of online voting results. 

Venediktov, managing editor of the Ekho Moskvy radio station, has come under fire for his overseeing and promotion of e-voting in Moscow. 

“Former journalist Venediktov is a criminal and should be in the dock for his participation in electoral fraud,” allies of jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny tweeted from his account. 

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