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Medvedev promises reforms and warns of foreign "interference"

Medvedev promises reforms and warns of foreign "interference"
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Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has said that “provocateurs and extremists” will not be allowed to interfere with society.

He has been giving his last state of the nation address before members of Russia’s Federal Assembly, the lower and upper house.

The President spoke about launching a sweeping programme of political reforms, in the wake of street protests over recent parliamentary polls, which critics claimed were rigged.

“People have the right to express their opinions by any means according to the law. But any attempts to manipulate, mislead or provoke social divisions are not acceptable,” Medvedev said.

“We will not allow provocateurs and extremists to threaten our society. We also won’t stand for any foreign involvement in our internal affairs.”

The President told members that what Russia needs now is “democracy, not chaos.”

He added that the country stood ready to continue fighting corruption.

Medvedev also commented on the economy, trumpeting a range of measures that he claimed had boosted employment and wages and lifted pensioners above the poverty line.

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