| Former Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev on Monday deplored
the defeat of
Russia's reformist pro-business parties in parliamentary elections and
warned against single-party domination leading to a "Soviet Communist-type
Commenting on results that saw the Union of Right Forces (SPS) and Yabloko
parties virtually eliminated from parliament in a nationwide poll Sunday,
Gorbachev said he "would have preferred the entire spectrum to be
represented in the State Duma (lower house)," the Interfax news agency
SPS and Yabloko both failed to break through the five percent threshold
that allows them to secure a share of half the chamber's 450 seats, and
likely to win only a handful of the remaining 225 seats determined on
With 90 percent of the ballots counted, results Monday indicated that
pro-Kremlin United Russia party could win an absolute majority in the
house of parliament.
Gorbachev warned that "if (the house) is one-sided, this could
lead to big
mistakes" and warned that "a Soviet Communist-type situation
The former Communist leader attributed United Russia's success to "a
certain tendency to the consolidation of society" and to "the
of the use of administrative levers."
"This of course was largely achieved by the president (Vladimir
mobilised resources to support United Russia," he noted.
However "United Russia must think carefully, ... and serve as a
the president," he said.
Gorbachev, who resigned as president in December 1991 as the Soviet
collapsed around him, has voiced cautious support for Putin's policies,
while issuing occasional warnings on human rights, social and environmental
State Duma elections