Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin on Thursday brushed off widespread criticism that the December 4 parliamentary elections in Russia were falsified.
He said their results "reflect the actual line-up of forces in the country, as well as the fact that the ruling force - the United Russia party - has lost certain positions."
In his traditional year-end question-and-answer program, televised live by state media, he said there is nothing new in the fact that the opposition is not happy with the election outcome.
"That happens every time and will be happening in the future. The opposition always struggles and takes every opportunity to sideline the authorities, to blame them and to highlight their mistakes. It is a totally normal thing."FULL STORY