MOSCOW, Oct. 14 (UPI) -- Russia is holding gubernatorial elections in five of the country's 83 regions Sunday for the first time in eight years, officials said.
More than 4,800 local elections will be held on Unified Voting Day, RIA Novosti reported.
President Vladimir Putin disbanded direct gubernatorial elections in 2004, but then President Dmitry Medvedev, Russia's current prime minister, brought back the direct elections of governors as part of a number of reforms pledged after massive nationwide anti-Kremlin protests earlier this year.
Over 100,000 policemen will be involved in the effort to maintain order during voting across Russia Sunday, the Interior Ministry said.
"To ensure law and order and public security, over 102,000 police and interior troops, 2,800-strong staff of private security firms and 3,900 representatives of voluntary people's squads, public formations and Cossacks will be involved during the holding of the Unified Voting Day," the ministry said in a statement.
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