RAs expected, Russia's Central Election Commission will not allow the liberal opposition figure and anti-war Boris Nadjezhdin as a candidate for the presidential vote in March. The election commission justified the rejection on Thursday in Moscow with a large number of incorrect supporter signatures. In addition to Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin, who wants to become president for the fifth time, there are three other candidates. They are seen as hopeless candidates who either support Putin directly or have no political profile of their own.

The 60-year-old Nadjezhdin was seen as the opposition's hope for an alternative to Putin. The politician wants to challenge the election commission's decision in the Supreme Court. “I don’t agree with the election committee’s decision,” said Nadjezhdin. The signatures for him were collected openly and honestly. “I will not give up on my intentions.”

Supporters of Nadjeschdin, who wanted to run for the Citizens' Initiative party, queued for a long time in January to submit their signatures for him to be a candidate in the election from March 15th to 17th. Significantly more than the required 100,000 signatures were collected. According to the electoral commission, 9,147 of a sample of 60,000 signatures were declared invalid. That was around 15 percent with a maximum permissible value of 5 percent.

Nadezhdin was the only candidate who openly opposed Putin's war of aggression in Ukraine. The opposition politician received great support from many compatriots for this anti-war stance, much to the annoyance of the Kremlin. Political observers had practically ruled out Nadezhdin's candidacy.

Incumbent Putin had the Russian constitution changed in 2020 in order to be able to run as a candidate again. His re-election is considered certain. After six years in office, according to the current constitution, he is allowed to run for the last time in 2030.