Journalist and head of Russia's largest Muslim media holding Aina Gamzatova submitted registration papers to the Central Elections Committee to fight for the 2018 presidential election.
She was nominated as a presidential candidate by a local initiative group in the Russian Republic of Dagestan in late December and is running as an independent candidate.
Gamzatova is the wife of the chief mufti of Dagestan, and also his government and public relations adviser. The 46-year-old runs several charity organisations.
Running as an independent contender without the backing of a party means that Gamzatova still has to collect and submit as many as 0.30 million (300,000) signatures from supporters from all Russian regions.
Candidates representing parliamentary parties do not have to collect any signatures, while those backed by parties not represented in the Russian parliament have to garner the support of o.10 million signatories.
Russia’s first female Muslim presidential candidate has not yet unveiled a detailed election program, sticking to broad appeals for national unity and cohesion.
She has, however, already gained some support from Russian Muslims and even caught the attention of international media.
According to the head of the Central Elections Commission, Ella Pamfilova, 21 Russian political parties, and 30 independent politicians and activists have declared their intention to run in the 2018 election
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