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Russian president Vladimir Putin dissolves government

MOSCOW -- President Vladimir Putin dissolved Russia's government Wednesday in a major political shakeup ahead of parliamentary and presidential elections, the Kremlin said.

The dissolution is expected to result in a new prime minister, who will be seen as Putin's choice to succeed him after he steps down next spring.

The newspaper Vedomosti, citing unidentified Kremlin officials, reported that Sergei Ivanov, a first deputy prime minister and a leading contender to succeed Putin, could be appointed to replace Prime Minister Mikhail Fradkov.

Another first deputy prime minister, Dmitry Medvedev, who is a top executive at natural gas monopoly OAO Gazprom, is considered the other leading contender.

Under the constitution, Putin has two weeks to propose a new head of government, which the lower house of parliament, the State Duma, then has a week to vote on. Russian news agencies s

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Added: Sep-12-2007 
By: noshoes4me
In:
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Tags: russia, putin, government, elections
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