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The chairman of the Russian Central Election Commission said on Wednesday
The chairman of the Russian Central Election Commission said on Wednesday that he was unsure of exactly how many international monitors would observe parliamentary polls, scheduled for December 2.

"Currently over 330 invitations have been sent out," Vladimir Churov told a news conference on Wednesday, adding that "The exact number of observers will only be known when they eventually get here."

There have been reports that election observers from the Organization for Security and Co-Operation in Europe have had trouble receiving Russian visas, but Russia has said that officials have obviously failed to provide their observers with the relevant information and materials on time.

The elections will be monitored by members of a wide range of election bodies, including those from Britain, Poland, Germany, the U.S. and Japan.

About 70 observers have been invited from the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, and another 70 from the Executive Committee of the Commonwealth of the Independent States, the top election official said.

A total of eleven parties are set to run for the State Duma, Russia's lower house, currently dominated by the pro-Kremlin United Russia party.


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