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New challenges as Medvedev sworn in
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The former president's achievements during his two terms, including the consolidation of the Kremlin's power and the improvement of the economy, won him enormous support among Russians.

Just hours after Medvedev took office, Russia's Viktor Zubkov-led cabinet tendered its resignation and Medvedev nominated Putin as prime minister.

The State Duma or lower house of parliament is expected to meet Thursday to vote on Putin's nomination, said Duma Speaker Boris Gryzlov.

It is widely believed that Putin will continue to wield considerable influence in his new role of prime minister and, together with strong ally Medvedev, will work to maintain Russia's stability, boost its economy and promote its influence on the international stage.

(Xinhua News Agency May 8, 2008)

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