Dmitry Medvedev

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Dmitry Anatolyevich Medvedev

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(Wikipedia) - Dmitry Medvedev For the Hero of the Russian Federation, see Dmitry Gennadyevich Medvedev. For the Soviet partisan and Hero of the Soviet Union, see Dmitry Nikolayevich Medvedev. This name uses Eastern Slavic naming customs; the patronymic is Anatolyevich and the family name is Medvedev. Dmitry Medvedev Дмитрий Медведев Prime Minister of RussiaPresident Deputy Preceded by 3rd President of Russia Prime Minister Preceded by Succeeded by Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Union State Preceded by Leader of United Russia Preceded by Leader of United Russia in the State Duma Preceded by First Deputy Prime Minister of Russia Prime Minister Preceded by Succeeded by Personal details Born Political party Other political affiliations Spouse(s) Children Alma mater Religion Signature Website
Assumed office 8 May 2012
Vladimir Putin
Igor Shuvalov
Vladimir Putin
In office 7 May 2008 – 7 May 2012
Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin
Assumed office 18 July 2012
Vladimir Putin
Assumed office 30 May 2012
Vladimir Putin
Assumed office 24 September 2011
Boris Gryzlov
In office 14 November 2005 – 12 May 2008
Mikhail Fradkov Viktor Zubkov
Mikhail Kasyanov
Viktor Zubkov Igor Shuvalov
Dmitry Anatolyevich Medvedev (1965-09-14) 14 September 1965 (age 49) Leningrad, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
United Russia (2011–present)
Communist Party of the Soviet Union (Before 1991) Independent (1991–2011)
Svetlana Medvedeva (m. 1993)
Ilya Medvedev
Leningrad State University
Russian Orthodoxy
Official website

Dmitry Anatolyevich Medvedev (Russian: Дми́трий Анато́льевич Медве́дев, tr. Dmitriy Anatolyevich Medvedev; IPA:  ( listen); born 14 September 1965) is the tenth Prime Minister of Russia, incumbent since 2012. He previously served as the third President of Russia, from 2008 to 2012. When he took office at the age of 42, he was the youngest of the three Russian Presidents who have served.

Born to a family of academics, Medvedev graduated from the Law Department of Leningrad State University in 1987. He defended his dissertation in 1990 and worked as a docent at his alma mater, now renamed to Saint Petersburg State University, where he taught civil and Roman law until 1999. Medvedev''s political career began as the election campaign manager and later an adviser of the St. Petersburg Mayor Anatoly Sobchak. During this time, Medvedev befriended Vladimir Putin. In November 1999, Medvedev was hired in the Russian presidential administration, where he worked as deputy chief of staff. In the 2000 Presidential elections, Medvedev was Putin''s campaign manager. On 14 November 2005, Medvedev was appointed First Deputy Prime Minister and was tasked with overseeing National Priority Projects. He also worked as the Chairman of Gazprom''s board of directors, a post which he held until 2008.

On 10 December 2007, Medvedev was informally endorsed as a candidate for the forthcoming presidential elections by four political parties: United Russia, Fair Russia, Agrarian Party of Russia and Civilian Power, and was officially endorsed by United Russia on 17 December 2007. Medvedev''s candidacy was backed by the popular outgoing President Vladimir Putin, giving a significant boost to his popularity. The 2008 presidential election, held on 2 March 2008, was won by Medvedev with 70.28% of the popular vote, and he was inaugurated on 7 May 2008. Although he did not run for a second term as President, Medvedev was appointed Prime Minister by Putin, who won the 2012 presidential election. On 26 May 2012 he also was appointed officially as the Leader of United Russia Party.

Widely regarded as more liberal than his predecessor, Medvedev''s top agenda as President was a wide-ranging modernisation programme, aiming at modernising Russia''s economy and society, and lessening the country''s reliance on oil and gas. During Medvedev''s tenure, Russia emerged victorious in the Russo-Georgian War and recovered from the Great Recession. Recognising corruption as one of Russia''s most severe problems, Medvedev has launched an anti-corruption campaign and initiated a substantial law enforcement reform. In foreign policy, his main achievements include the signing of the New START treaty, a "reset" of Russia–United States relations, which were severely strained following Russia''s war with Georgia, as well as increasing Russia''s cooperation with the BRICS-countries, and gaining Russia''s admission into the WTO in 2011.

  • 1 Background
    • 1.1 Early life
    • 1.2 Student years and academic career
  • 2 Early career
    • 2.1 Career in St Petersburg
    • 2.2 Career in the central government
    • 2.3 Presidential candidate
  • 3 2008 presidential elections
    • 3.1 Election campaign
    • 3.2 Election victory
  • 4 Presidency, 2008–2012
    • 4.1 Inauguration
    • 4.2 Personnel appointments
    • 4.3 "Tandem rule"
    • 4.4 Main external events
      • 4.4.1 2008 South Ossetia war
      • 4.4.2 2008–2009 Economic crisis
    • 4.5 Domestic policy
      • 4.5.1 Economy
      • 4.5.2 Police reform
      • 4.5.3 Anti-corruption campaign
      • 4.5.4 Education
      • 4.5.5 Development of the political system
        • Election reform
    • 4.6 Foreign policy
    • 4.7 Relationship with Putin
    • 4.8 2012 presidential elections
  • 5 Premiership, 2012-present
  • 6 Personal life
  • 7 Publications
  • 8 References
  • 9 Literature
  • 10 External links

Background Early lifeDmitry Medvedev in 1967 at the approximate age of 2

Dmitry Medvedev was born on 14 September 1965 in Leningrad, in the Soviet Union. His father, Anatoly Afanasyevich Medvedev (November 1926 – 2004), was an expert in chemical processing and taught at the Leningrad State Institute of Technology. Dmitry''s mother, Yulia Veniaminovna Medvedeva (née Shaposhnikova, born 21 November 1939), studied languages at Voronezh University and taught Russian at Herzen State Pedagogical University. Later, she would also work as a tour guide at Pavlovsk Palace. The Medvedevs lived in a 40 m² apartment at 6 Bela Kun Street in the Kupchino district of Leningrad. Dmitry was his parents'' only child. The Medvedevs were regarded as a fairly typical Soviet intelligentsia family of the time. His maternal grandparents were Ukrainians, whose surname was Kovalev, originally Koval. Medvedev traces his family roots to the Belgorod region.

As a child, Medvedev was bookish and studious, described by his first grade teacher Vera Smirnova as a "dreadful why-asker". After school, he would spend only a short while playing with his friends before hurrying home to work with his assignments. In the third grade, Medvedev studied the ten-volume Small Soviet Encyclopedia belonging to his father. In the second and third grades, he was very interested in dinosaurs and memorized all of Earth''s geologic development periods, from the Archean up to the Cenozoic. In the fourth and fifth grades, he became interested in chemistry, enjoying conducting experiments. After that, he picked up sports, practicing three or four times a week. In the seventh grade, he became romantically involved with Svetlana Linnik, his future wife, who was studying at the same school in a parallel class. The romance negatively affected Medvedev''s school performance, however; and, Medvedev calls the school''s final exams in 1982 a "tough period when I had to mobilize my abilities to the utmost for the first time in my life."

Student years and academic careerThe Faculty of Law building of Saint Petersburg State University, The place where Medvedev studied and later taught.

In the autumn of 1982, the 17-year-old Medvedev enrolled at the Leningrad State University to study law. Although he also considered studying linguistics, Medvedev later said he never regretted his choice, finding his chosen subject increasingly fascinating as his studies progressed, and said he was lucky "to have chosen a field that genuinely interested and that was really thing". Fellow students described Medvedev as a correct and diplomatic person, who in debates presented his arguments firmly but without offending his opponent. During his student years, Medvedev was a fan of the English rock bands Black Sabbath and Deep Purple. He was also fond of sports and participated in athletic competitions in rowing and weight-lifting.

He graduated from the Law Department of Leningrad State University in 1987 (together with Ilya Yeliseyev, Anton Ivanov, Nikolay Vinnichenko and Konstantin Chuychenko, who later became his associates). After graduating, Medvedev considered joining the prosecutor''s office and becoming an investigator; however, he took an opportunity to pursue graduate studies as the civil law chair, Medvedev''s specialisation, and decided to accept three budget-funded post-graduate students to work later at the chair itself. In 1990, Medvedev defended his dissertation, titled "Problems of realisation of civil juridical personality of state enterprise" and received his Candidate of Sciences degree in private law.

Anatoly Sobchak, a major democratic politician of the 1980s and 1990s, was one of Medvedev''s professors at the university. In 1988, Medvedev joined Sobchak''s team of democrats and served as the de facto head of Sobchak''s successful campaign for a seat in the new Soviet parliament, the Congress of People''s Deputies of the USSR.

After Sobchak''s election campaign, Medvedev continued his academic career, getting a position of docent at his alma mater, now renamed to Saint Petersburg State University. There, he taught civil and Roman law until 1999. According to one student, Medvedev was a popular teacher; "strict but not harsh". During his tenure, Medvedev co-wrote a popular three-volume civil law textbook which over the years has sold a million copies. Medvedev also worked at a small law consultancy firm which he had founded with his friends Ilya Yeliseyev and Anton Ivanov, to supplement his academic salary.

Early career Career in St PetersburgFacade of the Smolny Institute, meeting place of the City Hall''s Committee for Foreign Affairs where Medvedev worked as a consultant.

In 1990, Anatoly Sobchak returned from Moscow and became Chairman of the Leningrad City Council. Sobchak hired Medvedev, who had previously headed his election campaign, as his adviser. Another of Sobchak''s former students, Vladimir Putin, also arrived to help him. The next summer, Sobchak was elected Mayor of the city, and Medvedev became an expert consultant to the City Hall''s Committee for Foreign Affairs, which was headed by Putin. The Committee met at the Smolny Institute and Medvedev dropped by once or twice a week to help Putin. During this time, Putin and Medvedev became friends. Putin sometimes took Medvedev to his family dacha on weekends, and invited Medvedev to some of working travels abroad.

In November 1993, Medvedev became the legal affairs director of Ilim Pulp Enterprise (ILP), a St. Petersburg-based timber company. Medvedev aided the company in developing its strategy as the firm launched a significant expansion. Medvedev also received 20% of the company''s stock. In the next seven years, Ilim Pulp Enterprise became Russia''s largest lumber company with an annual revenue of around $500 million. Medvedev sold his shares in ILP in 1999, before his first job at the central government of Russia. The amount of profits Medvedev may potentially have received from his stock is unknown.

Career in the central governmentMedvedev with Vladimir Putin on 27 March 2000 after Putin''s victory in the Presidential election the day before.

In June 1996, Medvedev''s former colleague Vladimir Putin was brought into the Russian presidential administration, and three years later, on 16 August 1999, became Prime Minister of Russia. In November 1999, Medvedev became one of several people from St. Petersburg brought by Vladimir Putin to top government positions in Moscow. In 31 December of the same year, he was appointed deputy head of the presidential staff. Medvedev became one of the politicians closest to President Putin, and during the 2000 Presidential elections he was Putin''s campaign manager. Putin won the election with 52.94% of the popular vote. Medvedev has said he thoroughly enjoyed the work and the responsibility, calling it "a test of strength".

As President, Putin launched a campaign against corrupt oligarchs and economic mismanagement. For this purpose, he appointed Medvedev Chairman of Gazprom''s board of directors in 2000. Together with Alexei Miller, Medvedev managed to put an end to the large-scale tax evasion and asset stripping that was going on in the company by the previous corrupt management. Medvedev then served as deputy chair from 2001 to 2002, becoming chair for the second time in June 2002, a position which he held until his ascension to Presidency in 2008. During Medvedev''s tenure, Gazprom''s debts were restructured and the company''s market capitalisation grew from $7.8 billion in 2000 to $300 billion in early 2008. Medvedev also headed Russia''s negotiations with Ukraine and Belarus during gas price disputes.

In October 2003, Medvedev replaced Alexander Voloshin as presidential chief of staff. In November 2005, Medvedev moved from the presidential administration to the government when Putin appointed him as the First Deputy Prime Minister of Russia. In particular, Medvedev was made responsible for the implementation of the National Priority Projects, focusing on improving public health, education, housing and agriculture. The program achieved some major results, such as increase of wages in healthcare and education and construction of new apartments, but its funding, 4% of the federal budget, was not enough to significantly overhaul Russia''s infrastructure. According to opinion polls, most Russians believed the money invested in the projects had been spent ineffectively.

In December 2005, Medvedev was named Person of the Year by Expert magazine, a Russian business weekly. He shared the title with Alexey Miller, CEO of Gazprom.

Presidential candidateMedvedev with Vladimir Putin

Following his appointment as First Deputy Prime Minister, many political observers began to regard Medvedev as a potential candidate for the 2008 presidential elections, although Western observers widely believed Medvedev was too liberal and too pro-Western for Putin to endorse him as a candidate. Instead, Western observers expected the candidate to arise from the ranks of the so-called siloviki, security and military officials many of whom were appointed to high positions during Putin''s presidency. The silovik Sergei Ivanov and the administrator-specialist Viktor Zubkov were seen as the strongest candidates. In opinion polls which asked Russians to pick their favourite successor to Putin from a list of candidates not containing Putin himself, Medvedev often came out first, beating Ivanov and Zubkov as well as the opposition candidates. In November 2006, Medvedev''s trust rating was 17%, more than double than that of Ivanov. Medvedev''s popularity was probably boosted by his high-profile role in the National Priority Projects.

Many observers were surprised when on 10 December 2007, President Putin announced that Medvedev was his preferred successor. The announcement was staged on TV with four parties suggesting Medvedev''s candidature to Putin, and Putin then giving his endorsement. The four pro-Kremlin parties were United Russia, Fair Russia, Agrarian Party of Russia and Civilian Power. United Russia held its party congress on 17 December 2007 where by secret ballot of the delegates, Medvedev was officially endorsed as their candidate in the 2008 presidential election. He formally registered his candidacy with the Central Election Commission on 20 December 2007 and said he would step down as chairman of Gazprom, since under the current laws, the president is not permitted to hold another post. His registration was formally accepted as valid by the Russian Central Election Commission on 21 January 2008. Describing his reasons for endorsing Medvedev, Putin said:

I am confident that he will be a good president and an effective manager. But besides other things, there is this personal chemistry: I trust him. I just trust him.

2008 presidential elections Election campaignMedvedev''s election campaign took advantage of Putin''s high popularity and his endorsement of Medvedev.Main article: Russian presidential election, 2008

As the 2 March 2008 election approached, the outgoing President, Vladimir Putin, remained the country''s most popular politician. An opinion poll by Russia''s independent polling organization, the Levada Center, conducted over the period 21–24 December 2007 indicated that when presented a list of potential candidates, 79% of Russians were ready to vote for Medvedev if the election was immediately held. The other main contenders, the Communist Gennady Zyuganov and the LDPR''s Vladimir Zhirinovsky both received in 9% in the same poll. Much of Putin''s popularity transferred to his chosen candidate, with 42% of the survey responders saying that that Medvedev''s strength came from Putin''s support to him.

In his first speech after being endorsed, Medvedev announced that, as president, he would appoint Vladimir Putin to the post of prime minister to head the Russian government. Although constitutionally barred from a third consecutive presidential term, such a role would allow Putin to continue as an influential figure in Russian politics. Putin pledged that he would accept the position of prime minister should Medvedev be elected president. Although Putin had pledged not to change the distribution of authority between the president and prime minister, many analysts expected a shift in the center of power from the presidency to the prime minister post when Putin assumed the latter under a Medvedev presidency. Election posters portrayed the pair side-by-side with the slogan "Together We Win" ("Вместе победим"). Medvedev vowed to work closely with Putin once elected.

In December 2007, in preparation for his election campaign, Medvedev announced that funding of the National Priority Projects would be raised by 260 billion rubles for 2008. Medvedev''s election campaign was relatively low-key and, like his predecessor, Medvedev refused to take part in televised debates, citing his high workload as first deputy prime minister as the reason. Instead, Medvedev preferred to present his views on his election website <>.

In January 2008, Medvedev launched his campaign with stops in the oblasts. On 22 January 2008, Medvedev held what was effectively his first campaign speech at Russia''s second Civic Forum, advocating a liberal-conservative agenda for modernising Russia. Medvedev argued that Russia needed "decades of stable development" because the country had "exhausted its share of revolutions and social upheavals back in the twentieth century". Medvedev therefore emphasised liberal modernisation while still aiming to continue his predecessor''s agenda of stabilisation. On 15 February 2008, Medvedev held a keynote speech at the Fifth Krasnoyarsk Economic Forum, saying that:

"Freedom is better than non-freedom – this principle should be at the core of our politics. I mean freedom in all its manifestations – personal freedom, economic freedom and, finally, freedom of expression.

In the Krasnoyarsk speech, Medvedev harshly condemned Russia''s "legal nihilism" and highlighted the need to ensure independence of the country''s juridical system and the need for an anti-corruption program. In economy, Medvedev advocated private property, economic deregulation and lower taxes. According to him, Russia''s economy should be modernised by focusing on four "I"s: institutions, infrastructure, innovation and investment.

Election victoryMedvedev with Putin on election day on 2 March 2008

Medvedev was elected President of Russia on 2 March 2008. According to the final election results, he won 70.28% (52,530,712) of votes with a turnout of over 69.78% of registered voters. The main other contenders, Gennady Zyuganov and Vladimir Zhirinovsky, received 17.72% and 9.35%, respectively. At least three-quarters of Medvedev''s vote was Putin''s electorate. According to surveys, had Putin and Medvedev both run for president in the same elections, Medvedev would have received 9% of the vote. However, given United Russia''s near-total dominance of Russian politics, it was felt that Medvedev had effectively clinched the presidency when he was nominated as that party''s candidate.

The fairness of the election was disputed by many western observers and officials. Andreas Gross, head of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) mission, stated that the elections were "neither free nor fair". Moreover, the few western vote monitors bemoaned the inequality of candidate registration and the abuse of administrative resources by Medvedev allowing blanket television coverage. Russian programmer Shpilkin analyzed the results of Medvedev''s election and came to the conclusion that the results were falsified by the election committees. However, after the correction for the alleged falsification factor, Medvedev still came out as the winner, although with 63% of the vote instead of 70%.

According to John P. Willerton, the 2008 presidential elections and Medvedev''s inauguration "represented an unprecedented moment in the over thousand-year history of the Russian state, as a politically strong and healthy 55-year-old president willingly turned powers to a similarly vigorous leader." At the time of the elections, Putin was at the height of his popularity. Given his substantial majority in the State Duma, Putin could have easily amended the constitution to allow him to serve a third consecutive term, yet he refused to do so.

Presidency, 2008–2012 InaugurationTaking the Presidential Oath in the Grand Kremlin Palace on 7 May 2008

On 7 May 2008, Dmitry Medvedev took an oath as the third President of the Russian Federation in a ceremony held in the Grand Kremlin Palace. After taking the oath of office and receiving a gold chain of double-headed eagles symbolizing the presidency, he stated:

"I believe my most important aims will be to protect civil and economic freedoms....We must fight for a true respect of the law and overcome legal nihilism, which seriously hampers modern development."

As his inauguration coincided with the celebration of the Victory Day on 9 May, he attended the military parade at Red Square and signed a decree to provide housing to war veterans.

Personnel appointmentsMedvedev appointed Sergei Naryshkin as the new head of the presidential administration.

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