On March 15-17, 2024, an event took place in Russia, which the current regime tried to present to Russians and world society as "elections". In reality, we witnessed yet another criminal act, which we qualify as usurpation of power.
During its existence, Putin's regime has committed numerous crimes against citizens of Russia and other countries, including eliminating the basic rights and freedoms of Russian citizens, destroying constitutional institutions of power, banning the activities of national, republican and regional parties, unleashing bloody wars against the peoples of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria, Georgia, Ukraine and other countries, and consistently destroying the identity, culture, languages and self-government of the peoples living on the territory of the Russian Federation. Since 2014, the Putin regime has been holding illegal "referendums" and "elections" in the occupied Ukrainian territories.

The electoral event on March 15-17, 2024 is a blatant violation of international electoral standards. The absence of free nomination of opposition candidates, the impossibility for them to conduct election campaigns, brutal repression against activists and civil society organizations, and the destruction of the institution of independent observers make the so-called "elections" a cynical imitation of the democratic process.

The organization and conduct of an electoral event by Putin's regime, agitation for it, and active participation in it are crimes. Voting in pseudo-elections is also, in effect, complicity in this crime, aiding Putinism in its claims that the "vote" reflects the will of the majority.

The Congress of People's Deputies and the Free Nations League call on governments, parliaments, and international organizations not to give in to the Kremlin's deception, to impose sanctions against the organizers and participants in the "elections," to work for the dismantling of the imperial center and to ensure that all citizens living in the Russian Federation have the right to vote and that all peoples have the opportunity for their self-determination.

We appeal to the parliaments and governments of the world to follow our example - not to recognize Putin as President of the Russian Federation, not to recognize the State Duma as a parliament, to recognize the Putin regime and all its institutions as illegitimate, and Putin as a usurper of power and self-proclaimed dictator.
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