Election: Before planned protest action: Russians receive threatening SMS

According to media reports, critical people received warnings on their cell phones ahead of a planned protest in the Russian presidential election, which was criticized as a farce.

Election: Before planned protest action: Russians receive threatening SMS

According to media reports, critical people received warnings on their cell phones ahead of a planned protest in the Russian presidential election, which was criticized as a farce. The independent portal Meduza, among others, published screenshots of messages sent to readers from Moscow on Saturday. It says: "Regardless of the fact that you support ideas of extremist organizations, we are pleased that you will vote in Moscow." Then follows a request to take part in the election “quietly” – “without queues and provocations”. It was not initially known who was behind the messages sent on Telegram and Signal and how the recipients were selected.

The presidential election, which lasts until Sunday evening, is considered completely undemocratic and serves to maintain Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin's power in the middle of the war that Russia is waging against Ukraine. Russian opposition members have therefore called on people to take part in an act of resistance: they should show up at their polling stations on Sunday at exactly 12 noon. It is hoped that the long queues will reflect the discontent in the country. Russian authorities, on the other hand, had already threatened to prosecute participants and claimed that the event showed “signs of extremist activity”.

Already on the first day of voting on Friday, isolated protests could be observed in the huge country with its eleven time zones. In some polling stations, men and women poured paint into ballot boxes or even set small fires. There were several arrests.

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