Source AP ©

Putin-supported presidential aspirant Medvedev to improve Russian social programs

Dmitry Medvedev, a presidential candidate supported by Vladimir Putin, said he will improve Russian social programs.

In a meeting with leaders of the parties that proposed his candidacy a day earlier, Medvedev said: "We need to convert the successes that have been achieved in recent years into social and economic programs."

Medvedev, as first deputy prime minister, has been prominently shown on state-controlled television addressing an array of social services concerns.

That image as a socially engaged politician would be likely to appeal to voters who feel left behind even as Russia's economy soars on oil revenues.

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