News / Europe

Medvedev Announces First Session of Russia's New Duma

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, right, speaks at his meeting with leaders of parties that won seats in the State Duma, in the Gorki residence outside Moscow, December 13, 2011.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, right, speaks at his meeting with leaders of parties that won seats in the State Duma, in the Gorki residence outside Moscow, December 13, 2011.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has announced the first session of the country's newly elected parliament, despite protests against alleged fraud during parliamentary elections earlier this month.

Medvedev on Tuesday told a meeting of the leaders of parties that won seats in the State Duma, or lower house, that the first session will be held December 21. His announcement follows nationwide anti-government protests against the December 4 vote, which the opposition and observers say was rigged to favor the United Russia party.  

The demonstrators called for the official results to be annulled and for a new election. Medvedev has said complaints about election violations should be examined carefully by courts and election officials.

Earlier Tuesday, the owner of Kommersant Publishing, Alisher Usmanov, fired an editor and a senior manager in connection with what he described as a breach of ethics for its coverage of the election in the Kommersant Vlast weekly magazine. Usmanov fired the magazine's editor, Maxim Kovalsky, and the holding company's general director, Andrei Galiyev.

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin will be United Russia's candidate in the March presidential elections. Sergei Mironov, leader of the social democratic Just Russia party, and Russian tycoon Mikhail Prokhorov say they will run against Putin.

United Russia, which has dominated Russian politics for more than a decade, took about 50 percent of the vote and now holds a slim majority in the State Duma. But opposition parties and observers contend the winning results were probably inflated. The ruling party's leaders have denied cheating.

The Communists, along with the nationalist Liberal Democrats and Just Russia all made strong gains in the vote, meaning United Russia will be forced to work with the newly empowered opposition.

If he regains the presidency, Putin, 59, could serve two more six-year terms and remain in power until 2024. He was first elected president in 2000 and held that post until 2008, when he assumed the post of prime minister due to term limits.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

You May Like

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

Judge Declares Washington DC Ban on Public Handguns Unconstitutional

Ruling overturns capital city's prohibition on carrying guns in pubic More

Pricey Hepatitis C Drug Draws Criticism

Activists are using the International AIDS Conference to criticize drug companies for charging high prices for life-saving therapies More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid