The elections, preliminary results of which will be announced on Monday, will determine who will serve as Russia’s president for the next six years.
Russians are casting their ballots in the presidential election, as polls opened from the Far East region of Kamchatka to the western exclave of Kaliningrad. Eight candidates are vying for the post of president.
The vote will last for a total of 22 hours, as Russians across all the country’s 11 time zones, spanning from Kamchatka and Chukotka in the East to the westernmost enclave of Kaliningrad, will be heading to polls on Sunday.
First polling stations welcomed early voters at 8:00 am local time [20:00 GMT] on Saturday in Kamchatka and Chukotka regions, followed by the island of Sakhalin an hour later. In Moscow, the voting started nine hours later, at 5:00 am GMT, and will proceed until the polls close at 8:00 pm [17:00 GMT].
The incumbent Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is running as an independent, the Communist Party candidate Pavel Grudinin, the liberal Yabloko party candidate Grigory Yavlinsky, Liberal Democratic Party of Russia candidate Vladimir Zhirinovsky, Russian All-People's Union candidate Sergey Baburin, Maksim Suraykin from the Communists of Russia, and Civic Initative’s Ksenia Sobchak have all cast their votes at polling stations in Moscow. Boris Titov, the Party of Growth candidate, voted along with his family in the village of Abrau-Durso in the southern Krasnodar region.