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Russia's Putin Promises More Accountability

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin speaks during a meeting of the Government Presidium in Moscow, January 12, 2012.

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has promised to make the government more accountable to its people, if he wins a third term in presidential elections in March.

Putin laid out his plans Thursday on a campaign website, one month after the start of demonstrations by anti-government protesters who say Russia's political system is corrupt.

The prime minister outlined his priorities, which include fighting corruption, improving the investment climate and modernizing the economy. He also promised to increase controls over public security, which analysts say could be seen as a concession to the protest movement.

The protests gathered momentum following last month's parliamentary elections, which many observers say were rigged in favor of Putin's party.

Protesters accused President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Putin of "hijacking the vote" after Medvedev agreed not to run for president in the March 4 election.

Putin has been in office either as president or prime minister since 2000, and is widely expected to win the upcoming election.

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