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Vladimir Putin Wins 2024 Presidential Election in Landslide Victory

by Rahil M
0 comment

As Putin begins his fifth term as president, questions remain about his long-term plans and the trajectory of Russian politics.

Vladimir Putin, the leader of Russia, won the presidential election by a large margin. Putin claimed this victory in an election that was viewed by many as stage-managed and lacking any real competition and widespread protests against his increasingly authoritarian rule and the ongoing war in Ukraine.

In a vote criticized by the United States as not being free or fair, Putin secured 87% of the vote, according to the exit-polls conducted by a state-run agency Russian Public Opinion Research Center and the Public Opinion Foundation. After the election, the president addressed his supporters and dismissed the criticism from Western countries, saying it was expected given the tensions between Russia and the West.

The Ukraine war featured heavily in Putin’s victory speech, with him emphasizing his role in securing Russia’s borders and defending against incursions by pro-Ukrainian forces. When asked about the possibility of a conflict with NATO, Putin acknowledged the risks but expressed hope for avoiding a full-scale war.

He also, for the first time, commented on the death of Alexie Navalny, a prominent critic of the Russian government, suggesting that he had considered exchanging Navalny for Russian prisoners held abroad. Despite his victory, Putin’s presidency has faced scrutiny both at home and abroad, with allegations of electoral manipulation and human rights abuses.

The election results showed Putin leading with 87.14% of the vote, followed by the Communist Party candidate in second place. The government claimed a record-high turnout of 74%, although critics questioned the legitimacy of the results and pointed to discrepancies in voter turnout.

As the president sought re-election, protests were organized by opposition groups and urged voters to reject his candidacy. Yulia Navalnaya, the widow of Alexei Navalny, called for a symbolic protest against Putin’s rule, drawing thousands of supporters to polling stations across the country.

Western countries were quick to condemn the election as undemocratic, citing Putin’s suppression of political opponents and restrictions on free speech. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy also criticized him by stating that he had become “addicted to power” and called for international accountability for his actions.

Despite heavy international criticism, Putin’s victory has solidified his grip on power, in turn allowing him to pursue his agenda both internationally and domestically. His re-election was completely focused on efforts to boost voter turnout and suppress dissent, which drew condemnation from human rights organisations.

In the weeks leading up to the election, the government disqualified anti-war candidates and launched a propaganda campaign aimed at promoting his image. Opposition figures faced harassment and intimidation, while independent election monitors reported irregularities in the voting process.

Despite these challenges, opposition groups mobilized to challenge the president’s authority and demand greater political freedoms. The protests underscored widespread discontent with Putin’s rule and raised concerns about the future of democracy in Russia.

As Putin begins his fifth term as president, questions remain about his long-term plans and the trajectory of Russian politics. With constitutional changes allowing him to serve additional terms, Putin could remain in power for years to come, raising concerns about the concentration of power and the erosion of democratic norms.

For many Russians, the election was a stark reminder of the challenges facing their country and the need for meaningful political change. As they grapple with economic hardship and political repression, they continue to voice their demands for freedom and democracy, despite the risks involved.

In the aftermath of the election, Putin faces mounting pressure from both domestic and international actors to address concerns about human rights and electoral integrity. How he responds to these challenges will shape Russia’s future and its place in the global community.

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