With the Russian presidential elections approaching in March, current President Vladimir Putin has decided not to participate in the pre-election debates, a move confirmed by his press secretary, Dmitry Peskov.
This decision aligns with Putin's approach as a standing president, historically refraining from engaging in such debates.
Peskov, emphasizing his role as the president's press secretary, clearly stated, "The President does not participate in pre-election debates." Any further inquiries regarding Putin's campaign, including matters related to his certification as a presidential candidate, have been directed to his electoral headquarters.
This is reported by Russian news agency, Tass.
He joins other registered candidates, including representatives from three parliamentary parties: Leonid Slutsky from the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR), Vladislav Davankov from the "New People" party, and Nikolai Haritonov from the Communist Party of the Russian Federation (CPRF).
This election marks Putin's fifth presidential campaign. Previously elected four times (2000, 2004, 2012, 2018), he achieved his highest voter support in 2018, securing 76.69% of the votes. Putin's decision to skip the debates does not come as a surprise, considering his consistent approach in previous campaigns.
The presidential elections in Russia are set to take place from March 15th to 17th, with Putin seeking another term amidst various domestic and international challenges facing the country.
His absence from the debates is expected to draw both criticism and support, reflecting the polarized political environment in Russia.