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29 Feb, 2008 14:31

"Vote": Putin urges Russians to choose future

Two days before decision day President Vladimir Putin has addressed the nation, urging Russians to go to the polls to vote for their future. In their election build-up each candidate has chosen an individual approach to winning over the voters.

“We all understand that the level of trust he [a new president] enjoys with citizens is the key to his efficient work as president. I urge you to go to the polls on March 2 and cast your vote – for your future, for Russia's future,” Putin said.

As the contenders are making the final lap in the fight for the Kremlin, Putin hopes the future president won't drop the baton of reforms he's put in motion.

Gennady Zyuganov is a veteran campaigner. Always eager to show he hasn't lost the common touch. He might not want a revival of the USSR but sticks his party's communist roots.

“We are for closing-up ties with Belarus and Ukraine. We have prepared a plan for step by step rebirth of the USSR,” Zyuganov has said.

Zyuganov was the closest to winning the race in 1996, and ever since his place in the Kremlin has always been on the other side of the table.

His constant rival is Vladimir Zhirnovsky. Even though at this meeting the supporters of Zhirinovsky didn't seem to share his enthusiasm, he has always known how to stage the show.

At times the flamboyant leader of the liberal democrats simply doesn't need words.

The focus of his rage last time was the member of the Democratic party of Russia. Their leader Andrey Bogdanov took it personally.

Bogdanov is the most least known of the candidates, the leader of freemasons in Russia is not shy to set ambitious goals, and wants to see Russia in the EU.

But there's one candidate that stands out he only spent one day campaigning. He didn't need more. Deputy prime-minister and Gazprom's chairman – such a work load has certainly  scored him points.

Dmitry Medvedev, is closely following in the footsteps of the president who backed his candidacy. With such support he surely knows which way to go.

It's been a battle fought out on TV screens across Russia. All the candidates have spent time and money trying to persuade the Russian people they're the next big thing in the Kremlin. But that's all comes to an end on Saturday for a day of silence, when Russians are given a day free of political oratory.