Russia’s presidential election will take place on 18th March following a vote in the upper chamber of the country’s parliament. President Vladimir Putin last week ended weeks of speculation, saying he will run for the fourth term.
Putin’s 80 per cent approval ratings make his victory all but certain.
His most visible adversary, anti-corruption crusader Alexei Navalny, has declared his intention to run, but a criminal conviction bars him from running for President.
Navalny has been convicted on two separate sets of charges largely viewed as politically motivated.
Despite the implicit ban, he has mounted a grassroots campaign which reached the most remote corners of Russia.