Elections of Chechen president will be held

In the opinion of chairman of the State Duma (the Russian parliament's lower chamber) Gennady Seleznev, the elections of the president of the Chechen Republic will be held. The speaker said this in a conversation with parliamentary correspondents.

Asked to comment on the decisions of some international organisations, in particular the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), as well as some Russian human rights organisations not to send observers to the elections of the president of the Chechen Republic, and also asked if the absence of these observers would affect legitimacy of the elections, Seleznev stressed that to the best of his knowledge, "many international organisations have not yet taken a final decision (on sending their observers)".

"The question whether it will be technical observation or parliamentarians will go as observers was discussed in the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). The principal question which is put in the PACE and the OSCE is that we (Russia) should give more than 100-percent guarantees of security, that is to say, the elections themselves worry them less than their own security", the speaker noted.

Seleznev stressed that "we are ready to attach a platoon of soldiers to each observer if they (European parliamentarians) are so cowardly, if they fear for themselves more than for the voters who will go to the elections".

"I hold the view that the elections will take place", Gennady Seleznev stressed once more. "The most important task is to create conditions enabling everyone wishing to vote to reach the polling station and to drop his ballot paper".

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