St. Petersburg voter imprisoned for 8 days for writing ‘no to war’ on ballot

A St. Petersburg court has ordered a voter who spoiled her ballot paper by writing “no to war” on it in last weekend’s election be imprisoned for eight days for minor hooliganism and fined 40,000 rubles (€400) for “discrediting” the army, the St. Petersburg court press service reported on Tuesday.

According to the report, Alexandra Chiryatyeva went to vote at a polling station in St. Petersburg on Sunday, the third and final day of the elections, but instead of selecting a candidate, wrote “no to war” in red marker on her ballot paper before placing it in the ballot box.

“In so doing, Chiryatyeva spoiled state property and discredited the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation,” the court press service said.

Human rights watchdog OVD-Info said that as of 20 March, police had detained more than 93 people in 24 cities across the country during the three-day vote.

In Moscow, one voter was detained and taken to a police station for writing “Putin is a murderer” on his ballot paper, independent news outlet SOTA reported on Saturday. Another voter was detained near Moscow for writing the word “boycott” on the voter register and for attempting to take his ballot paper away with him, OVD-Info said on Saturday.

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