Yabloko first Russian party with a female leader – Emilia Slabunova
Liberal International, 14.01.2016
XVIII Congress of the LI full member from Russia “Yabloko” elected Emilia Slabunova, member of the regional parliament of the Republic of Karelia, as the new party President. With this groundbreaking development Mrs Slabunova stands as the first female leader of a Russian political party and for the first time in the political history of modern Russia a party has decided to limit the tenure of its chairman to two terms.
Three party Vice Presidents were elected to join Mrs Slabunova in the party leadership: two from the younger generation Alexander Gnezdilov (Moscow) and Nikolai Rybakov (St. Petersburg), alongside one of the founders of Yabloko Sergei Ivanenko. At the Congress the new Yabloko leader Slabunova said that “today there may not be ideal leaders”, but “ideal can only be a team. All of us together, as a team, can bring the party to the State Duma.”
Both previous Yabloko leaders Grigory Yavlinsky (LI Prize for Freedom laureate) and Sergei Mitrokhin praised Mrs Slabunova as “an independent person, not giving in to pressure – neither administrative nor political, nor the threats of criminal prosecution” and for her “deep understanding of the political situation”.
Outgoing Yabloko leader Sergei Mitrokhin spoke with optimism on the next State Duma elections. In his report to the Congress, Yabloko Leader said: “We have designated as the central point of our strategy the preservation and strengthening of the party as an independent-from-all-levels-of-authority political organization with a solid ideological and political principles, capable of taking responsibility for the management of the country”. He reminded that the situation in the country has “deteriorated very much – in terms of the political regime, and its pressure on civil society, and the political party system”, but at the same time, “the situation in [Yabloko] has improved significantly.”
Mitrokhin also pointed to another important area of activity of the party – overcoming the totalitarian past, the struggle against Bolshevism and Stalinism. “Yabloko is the only party that protests against the monument to Stalin,” reminded Mitrokihn.
Posted: January 16th, 2016 under YABLOKO and the International Liberal Family.