Russian President Vladimir Putin was elected to serve his fourth, six-year term on Sunday, with approximately 77 percent of the vote casting in his favor – but there have been multiple reports of violations in Russia’s election.
Several videos authenticated by the Associated Press show some election violations, including ballot box stuffing.
CCTV footage of a voting station in Lyubertsy shows a woman taking a several ballots and placing them inside the box. Another woman follows her lead and also places several ballots into the box.
The regional election commission said the results from the voting station in Lyubertsy would be invalidated.
Election authorities said the would investigate all cases of voter violations.
One man accused of ballot-box stuffing in Artyom was arrested, the Associated Press reported.
There were accounts of employers forcing their workers to go out and vote and then have proof that they voted. In one case, a doctor at a hospital in Yekaterinburg told the Associated Press that health officials had until 2 p.m. to show their superiors proof of them voting.
Between noon and 2 p.m., there was a large influx of workers coming to vote, one observer noted.
“People were coming in all at once, (they) were entering in groups as if a tram has arrived at a stop,” observer Sergei Krivonogov told the Associated Press, adding that those who voted would take pictures of the leaflets distributed by poll workers afterward.
In an effort to boost voter turnout, a variety of enticements were offered at some polling stations, including prizes for those who wore the best costumes, cancer screening and discounted food items. Performances and sports competitions were held as entertainment at polling stations.
Golos, an election-monitoring group, said that there were more than 1,500 violations across Russia, Bloomberg reported.
Putin’s critics called the election unfair, citing the Kremlin’s silencing of the opposition.
Putin’s most serious contender for president, Alexei Navalny, was barred from running after being convicted of fraud.
On Sunday, former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden criticized Russia’s presidential election and showed video of ballot stuffing.
“The ballot stuffing seen today in Moscow and elsewhere in the Russian election is an effort to steal the influence of 140+ million people,” Snowden tweeted. “Demand justice; demand laws and courts that matter. Take your future back.”
Watch a video of alleged Russian ballot box stuffing here: