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Russian Election Officials Declare Putin Winner of Presidential Race

CEC head Ella Pamfilova at Thursday's meeting. Vyacheslav Prokofiev / TASS

Russia’s Central Election Committee (CEC) on Thursday officially declared Vladimir Putin the winner of the 2024 presidential race.

With 76.27 million votes counted in his favor, Putin received 87.28% of the ballots cast in the March 15-17 election, according to CEC head Ella Pamfilova.

Communist candidate Nikolai Kharitonov placed second with 4.31% of the vote, followed by New People candidate Vladislav Davankov and nationalist Leonid Slutsky at 3.85% and 3.20% respectively. 

Putin’s victory was never in doubt as all his major opponents have been forced into exile, imprisoned or have died. Meanwhile, the Kremlin has waged a brutal crackdown on dissent since launching the full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

Outside of Russia, Pamfilova said Putin won majorities at polling places in the United States, Germany, Australia, Latvia, Estonia and Armenia. The CEC chief claimed 388,791 Russians voted in the election abroad.

Western governments have slammed Russia’s election as unfree and unfair, while Moscow’s allies and neutral countries have congratulated Putin on his claimed victory despite widespread reports of electoral fraud.

Analyst Ivan Shukshin said his modeling of polling station data suggests that some 22 million ballots were fraudulently cast for Putin.

The Kremlin insisted Wednesday that “it’s impossible to dispute” that Russia’s 2024 presidential race was “absolutely flawless.”

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