Now that Alexei Navalny has been barred from the elections Vladimir Putin will be the only candidate in the Russian elections to be held next year. Is it illegal to bar a candidate even though he is eligible? This might set a precedent where powerful rulers might bar other candidates from taking part in the elections.

  • 6
    Not entirely sure what the question is here? People can be legally barred from elections for a variety of reasons, that shouldn't be surprising and of course, it's not unique to Russia.
    – yannis
    Dec 26 '17 at 12:38
  • 2
    "legitimacy" seems like a rather squishy and subjective concept absent a formal definition. So "yes"/"no" answer seems impossible for the first question (and a trivially googleable "yes" to the second one).
    – user4012
    Dec 26 '17 at 14:09
  • 4
    If no one actually considers the results to be a "legitimate" democratic exercise to start with, does a further demonstration of that make it less legitimate than before? Dec 26 '17 at 17:59
  • "Vladimir Putin will be the only candidate" Citation needed. Note that the existing citation explicitly says, "other critical politicians permitted on to the presidential ballot".
    – Brythan
    Jan 2 '18 at 3:11
  • If you know you can't win the election, just break the electoral laws and then when you get barred from running, you go crying about it on western media, who will be happy to report on it. They will then give you titles as a "leading opposition figure", even though you have less than 10% support. Sep 4 '20 at 12:49

Navalny has been barred from standing in the election due to a conviction on corruption charges, and because of his outstanding criminal record by Russian law this means he cannot run for president.

After his first trial for these corruption charges the European Court of Human Rights ruled that his trial was unfair and demanded a retrial, following which the ruling was overturned, sent back to a lower court, and that lower court affirmed the corruption charges.

In this sense from an internal legal standpoint the elections are legitimate, but the real question at hand is whether the trials themselves were fair or whether Putin and/or his administration are manipulating the courts to keep what most view as the only legitimate challenge to Putin's rule out of the election. As with the assassination of Boris Nemtsov, it reeks of foul play but it is challenging to prove anything.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .