Russian Court Bars Opposition Party from Upcoming Elections

Posted August 22nd, 2011 at 2:05 pm (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

A Russian court has upheld a government decision preventing the liberal opposition People's Freedom Party from registering to take part in parliamentary elections later this year.

Monday's ruling follows a June decision by the Justice Ministry to deny the opposition coalition the chance to register as a political party.

The People's Freedom Party was founded last year and consists of a coalition of several opposition groups. Party co-leader and former deputy prime minister Boris Nemtsov said he was not surprised by the decision and plans to appeal the Moscow district court ruling.

Reuters says Nemtsov believes the next appeal is just a formality and that his party will never win an appeal in Russian courts. But he says all appeals in Russia must be exhausted before the case can reach the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

By law a party must be officially registered in order to take part in elections. If the current ruling stands, the Party of People's Freedom would be unable to field candidates in December's parliamentary elections or the March 2012 presidential election.