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28 Jan, 2008 04:52

The Media Mirror: what's in Monday’s Russian newspapers?

The print media focuses on four stories. The final list of presidential candidates has been released – and it doesn’t include Kasyanov. A Western plan for Medvedev. General Sukharto dies in Indonesia, bringing an era to an end. And how a born

Mikhail Kasyanov is out of the Presidential race.

Nezavisimaya Gazeta writes that Kasyanov decided not to show up at the Central Electoral Commission on Sunday – when the results of the inspection of the signatures of his supporters were announced. More than 13% of the signatures were found to be without addresses and personal registration numbers. Many were outright fake, borrowed from the names of characters in classic novels. The paper says Kasyanov’s constituency will most probably shift to the Communist party.

Vedomosti says, Mikhail Kasyanov has become a “professional Presidential Candidate”. The paper says his impact on Russian politics in this capacity is far greater than he ever achieved as Prime Minister.

Nezavisimaya Gazeta again, with a commentary from Alexander Rahr, a well-known German expert on Russia. He writes that most international conflicts involving Russia, except the problem between Russia and the UK, have become less visible lately. Also, the activity of those opposition groups in Russia that work under direct Western influence, has also nearly stopped. The author says, there is only one explanation – the West is giving Dmitry Medvedev a chance as a more liberal Presidential candidate.

Vremya Novostei  publishes a short biography of General Suharto, Indonesia’s Second President who died in Jakarta on Sunday.  The three decades of his rule, says the paper, were marked, on the one hand, by authoritarianism and nepotism, and on the other by exceptional economic success and rapid development.

Nezavisimaya Gazeta also has a tribute to the memory of General Suharto. The paper says the General took to his grave two of his most guarded secrets: the whereabouts of a letter in which the First President of independent Indonesia, Sukarno, transferred power to him, and the actual worth of the Suharto family fortune.

Izvestia has the story of a man who ran away from his town in Central Russia and became a monk – to escape prosecution for money forgery. Six months of daily prayer and reading the Bible prompted him to reveal his past criminal career to his Abbot and police. A smile lit up his face when he was handed a three-year jail term.