Thursday 8 December 2016

Medvedev on thin ice as he bids to outplay Putin

Steve Gutterman in Moscow

Published 19/04/2011 | 05:00

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin takes part in an ice hockey training session in Moscow yesterday
Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin takes part in an ice hockey training session in Moscow yesterday
President Dmitry Medvedev meets reporters

Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev look increasingly like campaign rivals as Russia's March 2012 presidential vote draws near: two politicians promoting themselves and making veiled criticisms of each other.

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President Medvedev is pitching himself as the right man for Russia's future and trying to set himself apart from Prime Minister Putin, who is widely seen as the paramount leader and has said he may return to the presidency.

But unless the long-time allies do the unexpected by running against each other, political analysts and diplomats say the decision on who will be the next president lies with Putin, president from 2000-2008. "We have only one voter, and his name is Vladimir Putin," commentator Yulia Latynina said.

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