Interior Ministry troops patrol Moscow 

A spokesman for the Interior Ministry says thousands of security forces are still patrolling Moscow following protests over the results of the parliamentary vote.

Vasily Panchenkov says the troops are in the capital Wednesday to maintain order.

Large opposition rallies were held in Moscow and St. Petersburg on Monday and Tuesday, an unusually sustained show of indignation. Police detained hundreds of people.

Authorities have said that over 53,000 security forces have been deployed in Moscow since the elections.

Preliminary results indicate the ruling United Russia party of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin won slightly less than 50 percent of Sunday's vote. Some opposition parties and international observer mission say the poll was marred by widespread reports and allegations of vote-rigging.

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