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    PUTIN TO PRESENT PRIME MINISTER'S CANDIDACY TO STATE DUMA WITHIN 2 WEEKS

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    MOSCOW, February 24, 2004. (RIA Novosti correspondent) - Within two weeks Russian President Vladimir Putin has to present to the State Duma [the lower chamber of the Russian parliament] a candidate for new Prime Minister. This was the comment a RIA Novosti correspondent received at the Russian Constitutional Court in connection with the President's decision to discharge the government on Tuesday.

    When citing Article 111 of the Constitution, the agency's interlocutor pointed out that "proposals on a candidate for the chairman of the Russian government are introduced not later than two weeks after the Cabinet's discharge".

    Then the State Duma will have a week to approve of the candidate, the source pointed out.

    Consequently, the last day to introduce a candidate is March 9th and the deadline for the Duma's decision is March 16th.

    The terms envisaged by the Constitution mean that the new Prime Minister will be approved before the country's newly elected president comes into office, the source pointed out. [The presidential elections in Russia are scheduled for March 14th].

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