The House That Putin Built

Zubkov's selection as Prime Minister leaves the leading candidates virtually unchanged for Russia's presidential election, observers say

Vladimir Putin's surprise announcement on 12 September that he was appointing the virtually unknown bureaucrat Viktor Zubkov as prime minister caught Kremlin-watchers off guard. It triggered feverish speculation about possible scenarios for the evolution of Russian politics in the run-up to the March 2008 presidential election. (Zubkov himself was among those surprised: he was only told of his new job the day before.)

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