Russians have strongly supported constitutional reforms that would hold President Vladimir Putin in energy till 2036, partial outcomes point out.
With about 87% of ballots counted, greater than 77% of voters backed the measures, the electoral fee mentioned.
The reforms would reset Mr Putin’s time period limits to zero in 2024, permitting him to serve two extra six-year phrases.
Opposition members have mentioned he’s attempting to grow to be “president for life”, a declare Mr Putin denies.
Top Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny dismissed the introduced outcomes as a “big lie” which didn’t replicate actual public opinion within the nation.
There isn’t any impartial scrutiny of the seven-day vote, and copies of the brand new structure appeared in bookshops through the week.
The final polling stations to shut within the huge nation spanning 11 time zones shut their doorways at 18:00 GMT within the western enclave of Kaliningrad on Russia’s Baltic coast.
Even earlier than the vote had ended, the interior affairs ministry mentioned there had been no violations that would have an effect on the outcome, Interfax reported.
Several hundred opponents of the constitutional adjustments staged protests in Moscow and St Petersburg.
Voting began across Russia last week, and the electoral fee put turnout at greater than 64%.
The Russian president and his supporters say the reforms – in whole, greater than 200 adjustments – are wanted to make sure nationwide stability.
Mr Putin, aged 67, has not mentioned he’ll run once more for the presidency when his newest time period runs out in 2024 – however has mentioned it’s important he has the choice to take action.
He has been in energy in Russia, both as president or prime minister, for 20 years.
Other conservative reforms embrace a ban on same-sex marriage and introduce a reference to Russia’s ancestral “faith in God”.
Both Russia’s homes of parliament have already adopted the adjustments, however President Putin ordered a public vote in a bid to legitimise the reforms. It was delayed from April because of the coronavirus outbreak.
Russian polling stations are normally vigorous locations with music, meals stalls and leisure.
But this vote was much more subdued with temperature checks on the door and workers handing out facemasks towards the coronavirus.
There had been loads of sturdy emotions, although.
Twelve of the 20 individuals we spoke to at one city-centre polling station had been fed up with the “eternal rule” of their president. One girl known as this a “sad day for democracy and liberal values”; one other needed an additional tick-box on the poll paper so she may vote not simply “against” however “categorically opposed”.
Other Muscovites mentioned they had been drawn to the ballot by the patriotic wrapping across the one central reform for the Kremlin. Voting by no means to relinquish management of Crimea, for instance, and to guard Russia’s “historical truth”, they had been additionally proud of Vladimir Putin staying on in energy.
As one older man put it: if the captain of a ship is steering the proper course, why change him? The preliminary rely suggests nearly all of individuals voting this week agree.
Russia’s new structure
The amendments cowl dozens of present articles, and add a number of new ones. They fall broadly into three classes and lots of enshrine issues within the structure which might be already federal legislation:
Banning any motion aimed on the “expropriation” of Russian territory, or requires that.
Protecting the “historical truth” of the Great Patriotic War (1941-1945) and banning any “belittling” of the feats of those that fought.
Protection of the establishment of marriage because the union of a person and a girl.
Senior officers barred from holding international passports, residency or abroad financial institution accounts.
Refers to Russians’ religion in God, as handed down by their ancestors.
Pensions to be index-linked.
Minimum wage a minimum of subsistence minimal earnings.
Forming a “responsible attitude” to animals.
State Council to set “direction of domestic and foreign policy and socio-economic priorities”.
An individual can solely maintain the presidency for 2 phrases (changing “two consecutive terms”).
In the case of an individual already holding the presidency, earlier phrases is not going to rely – the so-called “zeroing” of Vladimir Putin’s phrases thus far.