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Moscow gets new mayor after 18 years

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Moscow gets new mayor after 18 years


Moscow has a new mayor for the first time in 18 years, a Kremlin insider with close ties to Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

Sergei Sobyanin was voted in on Thursday by Moscow’s city council, a formality given that it is controlled by Putin’s ruling United Russia party.

Sobyanin promised to tackle corruption, excessive bureaucracy and the mismanagement that he said has undermined the city’s post-Soviet boom.

He also targeted fixing chronic transport problems as a priority.

52-year old Sobyanin was the Kremlin’s chief of staff when Putin was president and helped steer Dmitry Medvedev into the presidency two years ago.

He replaces Yuri Luhzkov, who was appointed Moscow mayor by Boris Yeltsin in 1992.

But criticism of Medvedev’s leadership resulted in him being sacked in September.

Government-run media had also accused Luzhkov of mishandling the wildfires crisis earlier this year. They also claim his wife’s construction company benefited from his position and monopolised building contracts in the city.

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