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3 Mar, 2008 04:27

The Media Mirror: what's in today's Russian newspapers?

Monday’s newspapers predictably deal with one main topic – Dmitry Medvedev’s victory. Experts discuss the challenges he’ll have to face. And the winners: Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev, come to Red Square in the dead of night.

Bad weather plagued most of Russia’s territory on Election day. In spite of that close to 69% of the electorate voted. NEZAVISIMAYA GAZETA writes in an editorial that weather wasn’t alone in the plot to keep the electorate away from the polling stations: the campaign had been lacking in intrigue and alternatives, the opposition – helpless, the televised debates – unconvincing. All that made this election the dullest of all in post-Soviet history.

Meanwhile, this is the first time in Russia’s history when an elected President doesn’t have to face the task of national survival. It doesn’t make his other tasks easier, says the paper, but it does allow him to concentrate on the matters of strategic growth and development of the nation.

KOMSOMOLSKAYA PRAVDA quotes experts on the challenges awaiting the new President:

Vitaly Tretiakov says, the President will need his administrative talent as well as strong will to make sure his policies are implemented by the bureaucracy. The bureaucracy is accustomed to working 80% for itself and 20% for the people. The President has to make them work for the people 100%.

Evgeny Yasin: the new President will have to change much in senior citizen and pension policies. It’s harder to deal with corruption. The people must feel that the state is defending their interests. They’ll stop offering bribes and start reporting on those who extort from them. 

Aleksandr Shohin: first, our old problems – fighting inflation and diversification of the economy. New challenges is the crisis in the U.S. and its possible impact on us. We would need a mechanism of fast reaction to that.

Alexander Rahr: the West, at least Europe, is expecting a warming up of relations. Many there think, relations between Russia and the United States are the key to the world order of tomorrow. In the end, Europeans will have to follow a line taken by relations between Moscow and Washington.

ROSSIYSKAYA GAZETA publishes this picture of Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev on Red Square for a midnight concert to celebrate the imminent victory, together with their supporters.