TOP COMMUNISTS DISAGREE OVER HOW OPPOSITION WILL FIELD CANDIDATES THIS YEAR.
Publication: Monitor Volume: 5 Issue: 5
Viktor Zorkaltsev–a member of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation (KPRF) and chairman of the executive committee of the People’s Patriotic Union of Russia (the “national-patriotic” opposition’s umbrella group)–said yesterday that the opposition would contest the parliamentary elections later this year in three “columns.” Zorkaltsev said the KPRF would put forward its own list of candidates, headed by its leader, Gennady Zyuganov. The Agrarian Party would put forward a second list, headed by its leader, Mikhail Lapshin. A third bloc, called “Patriots of Russia,” would also put forward a list, which might be headed by State Duma Speaker Gennady Seleznev, himself a top KPRF official.
Zorkaltsev said a fourth “national-patriotic” group of candidates might emerge, headed by KPRF radicals such as Albert Makashov or Viktor Ilyukhin, who heads the State Duma’s security committee. Both men received notoriety last year for making anti-Semitic statements. Zorkaltsev said a bloc led by either man could win the 5 percent or more of the vote needed for parliamentary representation only if it embraced the ideas of “friendship of peoples, international solidarity and inter-confessional peace.”
Meanwhile, Valentin Kuptsov, the KPRF’s number two, played down centrifugal tendencies within the party, stressing that Zyuganov and Seleznev would top a “central” KPRF candidates list (Russian agencies, January 7).
TOKYO SAID TO REJECT RUSSIAN PROPOSAL ON KURIL ISLANDS.