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Russian election marred by fraud, observers say

Despite losses, Putin’s party still in control

By David M. Herszenhorn
New York Times / December 6, 2011
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Western election monitors said Monday that they had observed blatant fraud, including the brazen stuffing of ballot boxes, in the parliamentary elections that delivered surprisingly big losses to United Russia, the party led by Prime Minister Vladimir V. Putin. The election Sunday left United Russia clinging to a slim majority, and while the monitors declined to draw firm conclusions, it was clear from their report that vote stealing and other alleged malfeasance could have shifted the outcome in United Russia’s favor.

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