Putin registered as candidate for 2018 presidential race
Moscow: The Russian Central Elections Commission (CEC) on Tuesday registered incumbent President Vladimir Putin as a candidate for the upcoming presidential election.
The commission, in a live broadcast, said that Putin's headquarters had collected 314,837 signatures in his support.
It has checked 60,000 signatures and found that just 232 of them or 0.39 per cent were invalid.
So far, the CEC has registered only two candidates who did not have to collect signatures, as they represent parliamentary political parties, i.e. politician and entrepreneur Pavel Grudinin from the Russian Communist Party and the leader of the Russian Liberal Democratic Party Vladimir Zhirinovsky.
In accordance with Russian law, the CEC has to complete the registration of the candidates by February 10, so that their names would appear on the ballots in the elections slated for March 18.
It is widely expected that Putin will win by a landslide, as he enjoys a much higher approval rating than his rivals.