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President to meet with non-system Opposition leaders again

March 27, 2012, 12:14 UTC+3

The "Kommersant" reports that incumbent President Dmitry Medvedev will meet with representatives of unregistered political parties again on April 2

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MOSCOW, March 27 (Itar-Tass) — The "Kommersant" reports that incumbent President Dmitry Medvedev will meet with representatives of unregistered political parties again on April 2, to discuss the political reform. Experts believe the president wishes to underscore the authorship of the reform had had launched to liberalize the political system.

Non-system parties' activists told the newspaper Dmitry Medvedev would hold a more expanded meeting with the leaders of unregistered parties in early April to continue the discuss of the political reform. A Kremlin source confirmed it, explaining that the leaders of the parties seeking registration had been invited to the meeting.

The newspaper reminds that the first meeting with the leaders of unregistered parties took place in February. The participants in the meeting offered their recommendations to the president regarding the party reform, and complained about the Justice Ministry which they said had denied them registration under far-fetched pretexts. After the meeting, Medvedev ordered to clarify the situation with the Ministry's denying registration to the Republic Party of Russia /RPR/ led by Vladimir Ryzhkov and the Party of People's Freedom /PARNAS/. The Justice Ministry announced that the RPR would be re-entered on the registry of legal entities, and that the decision on PARNAS had been justified.

The same persons were invited to the second meeting. Head of the Russian environmentalists' movement "Zelyonye" Anatoly Panfilov, leader of the Party of Action Konstatin Babkin and co-chairman of the party "for Our Motherland" Mikhail Lermontov confirmed their participation on Monday.

Vladimir Ryzhkov declined to answer whether he had been invited to the Kremlin, saying he was not well. PARNAS co-chairman Boris Nemtsov was unavailable on Monday, while the secretary of the federal political council of the Party Konstantin Merzlikin said he knew nothing about the party's co-chairpersons' being invited. The Left Front leader Udaltsov has not yet been invited, but if he is, he would certainly participate.

"Clearly, Medvedev wants to step down on positive sentiment, as the person who gave an impulse to democratic reforms in the country," head of the international institute for political expertise Yevgeny Minchenko said.

The president believes it is not out of place to remind to the leaders of these parties "whom they owe the new quality of political life." The expert does not see "anything bad in participants in the meeting's coming to terms with the authorities."

"It is naive and wrong to criticize the leaders of the parties for beginning negotiations with the government," he said.

In the opinion of political analyst Sergei Chernyakhovsky, the president did not take into account all the Opposition’s proposals, for example the one on creating election blocs, and now he "wishes to smooth over the impression." During his work in government, Medvedev had never shown any special liberalism, and now he is recruiting followers because he seeks to continue his political career this way or another," Chernyakhovsky said noting that he "seeks and uses any occasion for public presence, trying to create an image of the person ready for talks, and more liberal and modern than Putin." "By essence, Medvedev is close to Gorbachev; he is ready to play this game even if he is not aware that he can undo himself and his powers," the expert said.

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