Russia: Kremlin accused of silencing Russia’s independent election watchdog | Telegraph
State prosecutors paid a surprise visit to the Moscow office of Golos (‘Voice’), a Western-sponsored but operationally independent election watchdog, on Thursday and served it with legal papers accusing it of breaking the country’s election law. Demanding that its representatives appear in a Moscow courtroom on Friday morning, prosecutors accused the group of consistently painting a negative picture of an unnamed political party, an overt reference to Mr Putin’s United Russia party.
“It is obvious that the people who organised this campaign against us are the same people who are committing electoral fraud across the country,” GrigoryMelkonyants, Golos’ executive director, told The Daily Telegraph. “It is an act of administrative (government pressure). It is a special operation designed to put us out of action and to destroy the only independent election watchdog in Russia.”