Vladimir Putin breaks silence as angry Russians burn down ballot boxes ahead of election – World News – News

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Vladimir Putin has weighed in on multiple reports alleging Russian citizens have burned down ballot boxes in protest as the Russian election is underway.

Footage has emerged online showing Russian voters expressing their dissent by tampering with voting papers at polling stations.

In one video, a woman was filmed pouring what appeared to be ink into one of the ballot boxes.

In another clip, a woman wearing a black coat and scar can be seen setting fire to a ballot box before stepping away and seemingly pulling her phone out to document the incident.

Putin slammed the reports as he accused Ukraine of waging a “terrorist” campaign against Russia in an effort to thwart the election.

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He also accused Kyiv of intensifying military strikes on Russian territory to “intimidate” voters – a goal he claimed Ukraine will not achieve.

According to the TASS news agency, Putin said: “These attacks, pointless from the military point of view and criminal from the humanitarian point of view, as has been said, are geared to hinder presidential election in Russia.

“I am convinced that our people will respond to this by being more consolidated.

“Who do they want to intimidate? The Russian people? The Multiethnic people of Russia?”

Russia began three days of voting Friday in a presidential election that is all but certain to extend Putin’s rule for six more years after he stifled dissent.



The election takes place against the backdrop of a ruthless crackdown that has crippled independent media and prominent rights groups and given Putin full control of the political system.

It also comes as Moscow’s war in Ukraine enters its third year. Russia has the advantage on the battlefield, where it is making small, if slow, gains.

A Russian missile strike on the port city of Odesa killed at least 14 people on Friday, local officials said.

Ukraine, meanwhile, has made Moscow look vulnerable behind the front line with long-range drone attacks deep inside Russia and high-tech drone assaults that put its Black Sea fleet on the defensive.

Russian regions bordering Ukraine have reported several attempts this week by Ukrainian forces to take towns.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said “it is beyond any doubt that they are related one way or another to attempts to cast a shadow on the elections.”


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