>> A Russian TV personality has announced that she plans to run in next year's presidential election. The daughter of Vladimir Putin's former mentor, Ksenia Sobchak has been described by Vogue magazine as the Russian version of US socialite Paris Hilton. Her 5.2 million followers on Instagram often getting to see her pictured at society events or talking about designer products.
She says she's decided to run because she's tired of the same politicians, including Putin, running year after year, and wants to offer voters unhappy with Kremlin rule someone to get behind.>> I am against this corrupt system which has been built in our country over the past years.
Moreover, I am against any person, including Vladimir Putin, being in power for 18 years. I am definitely against that, and I am saying this openly and repeatedly.>> Sobchak says she's running independently. But Putin's most prominent critic isn't buying it. Alexei Navalny calls her a liberal laughing stock whose decision to run will only help the Kremlin.
Navalny himself wants to run, but is barred on what supporters say are trumped-up legal grounds. He says Sobchak is just a Kremlin stooge intended to split the opposition vote. Opinion polls show Putin, who's dominated Russian politics for nearly two decades, will comfortably win re-election, regardless of whoever stands.