Voting for the Presidential election began in Russia. Polling across the vast country will be held until voting closes at the westernmost point, the Kaliningrad region, 22 hours later.
Opinion polls have given incumbent President Vladimir Putin, support of around 70 percent, or nearly 10 times the backing of his nearest challenger.
Another term will take Putin to nearly a quarter century in power. Many voters credit the 65-year-old former KGB agent, with standing up for Russia’s interests in a hostile outside world. Putin was first elected as President in 2000.