Veteran Russian politician Vladimir Zhirinovsky dies aged 75

Leader of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR), MP Vladimir Zhirinovsky passed away on Wednesday after a long illness, Speaker of the State Duma Vyacheslav Volodin said at the plenary session of the parliament.

The Members of Parliament honored the memory of the politician with a moment of silence and announced a break in the meeting.

In April 1991 Zhirinovsky, along with Vladimir Bogachev, founded the Liberal Democratic Party, the second registered party in the Soviet Union.

Zhirinovsky’s first political breakthrough came in June 1991 when he came third in Russia’s first presidential election, gathering more than six million votes (7.81% of the vote).

Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the party was renamed Liberal Democratic Party of Russia. The Liberal Democratic Party remained a significant force in Russian politics. At the height of its fortunes, LDPR gathered 23% of the vote in the 1993 Duma elections and achieved a broad representation throughout the country.

This fact encouraged Zhirinovsky to once again vie for the presidential office, this time against incumbent Boris Yeltsin.

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