Putin secures record victory in Russian presidential election, early results indicate

President Vladimir Putin secured a record 88% of the vote in Russia’s presidential election on Sunday, according to exit polls and initial results, reinforcing his control over Russian politics.

Despite this overwhelming victory, thousands of opponents conducted a symbolic noon protest at polling stations, report Guy Faulconbridge and Andrew Osborn.

This early outcome suggests Putin, who first ascended to power in 1999, has comfortably secured a new six-year term. This tenure extension positions him to surpass Josef Stalin, making him the longest-serving Russian leader in over two centuries.

Exit polls conducted by the pollster FOM showed Putin with 87.8% of the vote, marking the highest result in Russia’s post-Soviet history. The Russian Public Opinion Research Centre (VCIOM) reported a similar figure, placing Putin at 87%. The initial official results have corroborated these polls.