Eurasia This Week: June 24, 2021

June 24, 2021

Your weekly roundup of news and analysis of elections in Eurasia, usually posted on Thursdays and occasionally updated throughout the week. For a full electoral calendar and interactive map, click here.

Maia Sandu voting in Moldova’s November 2020 presidential runoff, which she subsequently won. Sandu hopes to cement her victory by winning a parliamentary majority in the snap elections set for July 11. Photo credit: Voice of America (public domain)

Upcoming Eurasia Elections

Moldova Snap Parliamentary Elections: July 11, 2021

Moldova is holding snap parliamentary elections on July 11, which pro-Europe center-right president Maia Sandu had been trying to call for months. Sandu trounced pro-Kremlin leftist Igor Dodon, who had been the incumbent, in the November 2020 presidential election However, no party currently has a clear majority in parliament (and Sandu’s allies are outnumbered by pro-Russian parties). The resulting political instability was reaching crisis levels. More

Marek Grzegorczyk, Emerging Europe (June 23, 2021): Maia Sandu is about to become the most powerful leader in Moldova’s history

Madalin Necsutu, Balkan Insight (June 23, 2021): Moldova to Open More Polling Stations Abroad for Elections

Russia Parliamentary Elections: By September 19, 2021

Russia is due to hold parliamentary elections by September 19, 2021. Russian elections are neither free nor fair. Nonetheless, the opposition has been making some gains in recent regional elections, helped by opposition leader Alexei Navalny’s “Smart Vote,” a campaign of tactical voting, in which they developed a list of candidates the best chance of beating Vladimir Putin’s United Russia. Consequently, the Kremlin has launched a brutal crackdown on the opposition, including imprisoning Navalny. More

RFE/RL (June 23, 2021): Nine Million Russians ‘Deprived Of Right To Be Elected’

Moscow Times (June 22, 2021): More Russians Barred from Elections Today Than in Soviet Union – Research

Meduza (June 22, 2021): ‘It’s a humiliation’ United Russia leaves chairman Dmitry Medvedev out in the cold ahead of 2021 State Duma election

Reuters (June 19, 2021): Russia’s Putin tries to give ruling party a pre-election boost with spending promises

Uzbekistan Presidential Election: October 24, 2021

Uzbekistan is holding a presidential election on October 24, 2021. Elections in Uzbekistan are neither free nor fair, and political opposition is not able to operate freely in the country. More

Catherine Putz, The Diplomat (June 22, 2021): New Opposition Party in Uzbekistan Denied Registration, Again: The Truth and Progress party, after being rejected in April, re-applied but was again rejected by the Ministry of Justice.

Past Eurasia Elections

Armenia Snap Parliamentary Elections: June 20, 2021

Armenia held snap parliamentary elections on June 20 in an effort to defuse a political crisis following a defeat in the recent Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Pre-election polls suggested a close contest Pashinyan acting prime minister Nikol Pashinyan and former president Robert Kocharyan; however, Pashinyan ended up winning by a significant margin.

Pashinyan became prime minister following the 2018 pro-democracy “Velvet Revolution.” However, he mostly maintained Armenia’s pro-Russia geopolitical stance, and that does not look likely to change in the near future.

Christian Mamo, Emerging Europe (June 25, 2021): No more velvet: Armenia’s PM Nikol Pashinyan promises a ‘steel’ revolution

Ron Synovitz, RFE/RL (June 21, 2021): Pashinian’s Surprising Landslide Victory Defies Armenian Opinion Polls

Andrew E. Kramer, New York Times (June 21, 2021): Armenia’s Governing Party Wins Election Seen as Vote on Peace Deal

Avet Demourian, AP (June 20, 2021): Armenia votes in election triggered by war defeat

Belarus Presidential Election: August 9, 2020

Belarus held a presidential election on August 9, 2020. In a vote widely deemed not free and not fair, incumbent Alexander Lukashenko declared victory. However, the opposition declared that Svetlana Tikhanovskaya had in fact won. Hundreds of thousands of Belarusians have taken to the streets in protest to demand free and fair elections, even in the face of assault and arrest by security forces. Protests continue. More

Lorne Cook, AP (June 23, 2021): AP Interview: Belarus regime ‘frightened,’ says opponent

Eurasia Elections Coming Up in 2021 and 2022

Moldova Snap Parliamentary Elections: July 11, 2021

Russia Parliamentary Elections: By September 19, 2021

Georgia Local Elections: October 2021 (due)

Kyrgyzstan Parliamentary Elections Take 2: Fall 2021 (expected)

Uzbekistan Presidential Election: October 24, 2021

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