Hundreds line at Tel Aviv's Russian embassy to vote against Putin

Hundreds lined up at embassy to make their voices hear in Russian presidential election, some waiting for 7 hours or more; despite voters' determination, Putin will remain in office until 2030

While polling stations have already closed in Russia, hundreds of people in Tel Aviv stood in line since the afternoon, and into the evening on Sunday, at the Russian embassy to exercise their democratic right to vote in the presidential election.
Hundreds line outside Russian Embassy in Tel Aviv to exercise their right to vote in the presidential election
(Video: Yair Sagi)

Many waited for more than 7 hours, in part as a protest in many global locations to honor the memory of President Vladimir Putin's opponent, Alexei Navalny, who died in prison last month.
Among the hundreds standing in line during the evening was Victoria, who came to vote "against Putin," in her words, despite knowing it wouldn't affect the outcome.
"I came to vote against him, it doesn't matter to whom," she told Ynet, "It's important for us to come and vote because it's one of the only democratic tools we have."
Victoria is aware that her vote won’t influence the outcome, and according to the polls in the country, she is not mistaken. Vladimir Putin was re-elected as the president of Russia, set to serve until 2030 after securing 88% of the vote. He is expected to surpass Soviet leader Joseph Stalin in longevity of service.
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תור ארוך להצבעה בבחירות לנשיאות בשגרירות רוסיה בתל אביב
תור ארוך להצבעה בבחירות לנשיאות בשגרירות רוסיה בתל אביב
Russian President Vladimir Putin
(Photo: Mikhail METZEL / POOL / AFP, Yair Sagi)
However, Victoria and others who waited in line outside the embassy in Tel Aviv explain why it is still important for them to vote. "I've been standing in line for almost seven hours, even though it probably won't change anything, this is my only way to express my views," she says.
However, protest votes against Putin were not exclusive to Israel. Thousands of Russian citizens stood at polling stations in various cities at noon Sunday for a protest demonstration under the title "Noon Against Putin." The Russian president addressed this in his speech after the closing of polls, praising the activists against him for their call to vote in the elections.
This method of protest is seen as a way to honor the memory of Navalny, who expressed support for such protests shortly before he died in prison. Navalny's associates declared Sunday that the action was a success, posting videos and photos of demonstrators standing near polling stations around noon.
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