Mon, March 05, 2012
World > Europe > Russian presidential election 2012

Putin announces victory in presidential election

2012-03-04 23:21:10 GMT2012-03-05 07:21:10(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev (2nd L) walks with Russia's presidential candidate and incumbent Prime Minister Vladimir Putin (1st L) as they attend a gathering in Moscow, March 4, 2012. (Xinhua/RIA Novosti)

Russia's presidential candidate and incumbent Prime Minister Vladimir Putin (1st L) waves to his supporters during a gathering in Moscow, March 4, 2012. Putin attended the gathering with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev. (Xinhua/RIA Novosti)

Supporters of Vladimir Putin gather at a square in Moscow to celebrate his winning on March 4, 2012. Russia's presidential candidate Vladimir Putin announced here Sunday that he had won the presidential election. According to an exit poll conducted by the state-run pollster VTsIOM released earlier Sunday, Putin is expected to garner 58.3 percent of votes, enough to avoid a second round. (Xinhua/Jiang Kehong)

MOSCOW, March 4 (Xinhua) -- Russia's presidential candidate Vladimir Putin announced here Sunday that he had won the presidential election.

The incumbent Prime Minister and President Dmitry Medvedev went to the Manezh Square, where around 100,000 supporters were celebrating the victory.

"We have won!" Putin claimed with tears in eyes. "We won thanks to the support from the vast majority of our voters."

He said this was "a pure victory," which was gained in an "open and honest battle," and calling on all Russians to unite around the interests of the people and the country.

Supporters gathered at the square after the voting was concluded, holding Russian flags and banners.

"This was a test of (our) political maturity and independence. We have shown that no one can bestow anything upon us," the prime minister was quoted by RIA Novosti news agency as saying.

Medvedev told the crowd: "Our candidate is leading confidently, and I have no doubts that we will win. All of us really need this victory."

According to an exit poll conducted by the state-run pollster VTsIOM released earlier Sunday, Putin is expected to garner 58.3 percent of votes, enough to avoid a second round.

The sixth presidential election of Russia concluded on Sunday with an early estimated turnout of 63.37 percent.

Putin served two terms as the country's president from 2000 to 2008.

In his election manifesto, Putin promised to develop innovation- oriented economy that benefits the people and implement political reforms on the premise of stability. He also called for rearmament and modernization of the Russian forces.

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