World Bulletin / News Desk
Russia's top court on Saturday rejected an appeal by opposition leader Alexei Navalny against a decision to bar him from running in the country's 2018 presidential election.
The court decided "to deny the granting of the appeal," judge Nikolai Romanenkov was quoted as saying by Russian agencies.
Opposed only by token candidates, Russian President Vladimir Putin is widely expected to win a fourth presidential term in the March election.
Navalny's campaign team said it will ask the Supreme Court to reconsider its decision and will also file a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights.
"We understood that this would be a political decision. But we will continue to go through all the stages of appealing," said Navalny's lawyer Ivan Zhdanov as quoted by Russian news agency Interfax.
On Monday, Russia's Central Election Commission unanimously rejected Navalny's bid to run against President Vladimir Putin next year, the controversial embezzlement conviction.
Navalny, who has campaigned across Russia in recent months, argued earlier in front of the commission that his conviction was lifted in the European Court of Human Rights, and that banning him from participation would make March's election illegitimate.
The ban prompted the 41-year-old protest leader to call for a boycott of the election.
In a tweet following the Supreme Court ruling, Navalny repeated his call for Russians to shun the vote: "We do not recognise elections without competition."
The opposition leader, who has built a sizeable campaign through his blog and YouTube on an anti-corruption platform, has called several mass rallies across Russia this year that saw a high number of young people participate.
He has called on his supporters to take to the streets again on January 28 following the ban.
Putin has been in power since 1999 and a victory in March would extend his rule until 2024, making him the longest serving Russian leader since dictator Josef Stalin.
The president and other top Russian officials do not refer to Navalny by name.
Resources strained as thousand crossing into Canada from US
American Civil Liberties Union granted request to halt deportations for one week after reunification
Trump declared that US-Russian relations have turned a corner after a summit with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin that he described as "open, direct and deeply productive".
Operation is aimed at restoring confidence after last year’s illegitimate poll on Kurdish regional independence
The U.S. State Department is negotiating a potential deal to sell Turkey the Raytheon Co Patriot missile defense system as an alternative to the Russian-made S-400 system Turkey has agreed to purchase, an official said on Monday.
ISIL still maintains a limited presence in northern and western Iraq
90 more migrants in critical condition found inside shipping containers
Obama arrived in his father's native Kenya on Sunday, where he paid courtesy calls on President Uhuru Kenyatta and main opposition leader Raila Odinga.
Tensions have steadily mounted in southern Iraqi province over unemployment and lack of basic services
Speaking in an interview with CBS Evening News conducted on Saturday ahead of his meeting with the Russian leader in Helsinki on Monday, the US president also sought to temper expectations about how much could be achieved.
FETO orchestrated the defeated coup, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured
The protests hit several provinces including Basra, despite Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announcing fresh funds and pledges of investment for the oil-rich but neglected region.
US director of documentary on FETO-linked schools in US says FETO terrorists spent 18 years spreading false image of group
Basra residents complain of high unemployment and lack of basic services