Moscow Says Foreign Hackers Tried to Interfere with Its Presidential Election

Glen Norman
March 20, 2018

His only real challenge was to run up the tally so high that he could claim an indisputable mandate. In referring to him as Russia's vozhd, she was resurrecting a word for "leader" that was last commonly used in the country to refer to Stalin.

Those accusations ultimately bolstered Putin at home among those who see him as their defender against a hostile outside world. More than 30,000 crowded into Manezh Square adjacent to the Kremlin in temperatures of minus-10 degrees (15-degrees F) for a victory concert and to await his words.

"We are bound for success", he told chanting crowds near the Kremlin.

Putin's ability to confront the West has increased after President Donald Trump's election exposed fault lines between the USA and Europe and the U.K.'s vote to leave the European Union, said Roderic Lyne, former British ambassador to Russian Federation.

Two senior officials from the Philippine Commission on Elections were among foreign delegations invited to observe the polls.

Near final figures put voter turnout at 67.47 percent, just shy of the 70 percent the presidential administration was reported to have been aiming for by Russian media before the vote.

Election officials moved quickly to respond to some of the violations. A man accused of tossing multiple ballots into a box in the far eastern town of Artyom was arrested.

Mr. Navalny, who had called on voters to boycott the election, urged his supporters not to lose heart and said his campaign had succeeded in lowering the turnout, accusing authorities of being forced to falsify the numbers. In 2012, he swopped roles with his mentor and became Prime Minister.

Putin's most serious rival, opposition leader Alexei Navalny, was barred from the race because of a fraud conviction widely seen as politically motivated.

Putin, who has ruled Russian Federation for nearly two decades, recorded his best ever election performance with 76.66 per cent of the vote but rejected the possibility of staying in power indefinitely.

Germany's foreign minister is calling on Russian Federation to make more "constructive contributions" to dialogue after President Vladimir Putin won re-election. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov played down suggestions that tensions with the West had boosted turnout, saying the result showed that Russians were united behind Mr. Putin's plans to develop the country. "And we established a mechanism to do that, and that mechanism holds secure", Netanyahu said prior to his snap meeting with Putin in Russian Federation at the end of January.

But Putin's popularity remained strong, apparently buttressed by nationalist pride.

Even so, Putin will use his next six years to assert his vision of a strong Russian Federation, according to Joerg Forbrig, senior program director of the German Marshall Fund of the U.S.

His claim several weeks ago that Russian Federation has developed new nuclear weapons that can evade missile defenses clearly showed Putin's adamant determination to boost Russia's power to intimidate. Clearly, economics is a fundamental part of the stability of a country.

"I think that in the United States and Britain they've understood they can not influence our elections", Igor Morozov, a member of the upper house of parliament, said on state television. "I feel like everything has already been decided", he said. "The peak of the attack was at 02.20 a.m. Moscow Time".

The Central Election Commission, with just over 70 percent of the votes counted, announced that Putin, who has dominated the political landscape for the last 18 years, had won 75.9 percent of the vote.

Navalny, whose group also monitored the vote, dismissed Putin's challengers on Sunday's ballot as "puppets".

Russian election authorities have annulled voting results in five districts as they investigate ballot stuffing and other problems in the presidential election.

Election Day coincided with the fourth anniversary of the annexation of Crimea.

"Who am I voting for?"

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