Communists will decide whether or not to nominate their candidate for presidential elections after elections to the State Duma, the lower chamber of the Russian parliament.
"As to the candidate for presidency, it depends on how we perform at the parliamentary elections. If we strengthen our positions and receive a majority of votes then we will be able to nominate a candidate from the patriotic bloc. But if we fail, then the issue will be naturally dismissed," said leader of the Russian Communist Party Gennady Zyuganov at the State Duma on Thursday.
At the same time, he believes that the left-wingers "have every reason to succeed in the forthcoming parliamentary elections".
The overwhelming majority of "parties and movements that are members of the National Patriotic Union of Russia have decided to go to the elections under the Communist Party's flag," Zyuganov announced. The judicial registration of the leftist election bloc will take place at a congress in the middle in September, he said.
The elections to the State Duma are due in December this year, while the presidential elections will be held in March 2004.