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Putin will hesitate to announce mobilization before March elections - British intelligence

Putin will hesitate to announce mobilization before March elections - British intelligence Putin is afraid to announce another mobilization before the elections (Photo: Getty Images)

The possibility of another mobilization in Russia before the presidential elections in March next year is considered unlikely, according to the Ministry of Defense of the United Kingdom.

The report states that the presidential elections in Russia are scheduled for March 17, 2024, and President Vladimir Putin is almost sure to run again despite not having officially announced his intention to do so. There are speculations that Putin's unofficial pre-election campaign will likely commence in November 2023.

"While elections in Russia are subject to interference and control by the Kremlin, they remain a core tool of political legitimization," the report mentions.

According to British intelligence, Putin's pre-election campaign will likely focus on the narrative of Russia as a separate civilization that requires protection from external enemies. This narrative often justifies the state's actions and consolidates Putin's power.

"In the build-up to the election, the Kremlin will almost certainly seek to minimize unpopular policy moves. It is, therefore, highly unlikely that any further mobilization wave will be implemented before the March 2024 presidential election," notes the Ministry of Defense of Britain.

Support for war and Putin among Russian citizens

According to the independent Levada Center, support among Russian citizens for the fight against Ukraine has remained consistently high since February of the previous year. In September, 73% approved of the invasion of Ukraine.

Over the past six months, the number of citizens fearing a general mobilization has mostly remained unchanged. 59% are afraid of mobilization, while 37% are not afraid. Citizens of Moscow are less fearful of mobilization than those in other regions.

In September, sociologists recorded a significant decline in trust among Russians in President Vladimir Putin (down to 38%) and members of his government.