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Replacement of Moscow mayor Russia's main event of 2010 - poll

Yuri LuzhkovMoscow, 23 December: According to a poll by the VTsIOM public opinion research agency, the main nationwide event of 2010 was the sacking of Moscow mayor Yuriy Luzhkov and the appointment of Sergey Sobyanin as new head of the city, VTsIOM representative Olga Kamenchuk said at a news conference at Interfax's central office today.

"Moscow is the heart of the country's social activities and political life. Therefore, it is understandable that the attention of Russians in the outgoing year was focused on the key event in Moscow - the replacement of the mayor. This may be the reason why Russians who took part in the poll put the replacement of the Moscow mayor and Sergey Sobyanin's first steps in the new post at the top of key nationwide events," she said.

The second most important event was the wildfires in central Russia in the summer which were caused by abnormal high temperatures, she said. "This event was a tragedy for many families. The country just could not stay indifferent towards this. These developments caused much emotion the length and breadth of the country," Kamenchuk said.

Disorder on Manezhnaya Ploshchad (square outside the Kremlin on 11 December) was also noted among the key events of the outgoing year, she said.

"The 11 December disorder came third in the list of Russia's top three events of the year. There is no doubt that this also concerned many Russians because this happened in the very centre of the country," she said.
(RIA Novosti news agency, Moscow, in Russian 1205 gmt 23 Dec 10 quoted Kamenchuk as saying that Russia winning the right to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup was another key event of the outgoing year.

The poll also showed that Prime Minister Vladimir Putin was seen as Russia's main statesman of the year (55 per cent of respondents). President Dmitriy Medvedev came in second, with 37 per cent. Liberal Democratic Party of Russia leader Vladimir Zhirinovskiy was third, with 5 per cent.

A total of 51 per cent of Russians said they expected the coming year to be a good one. Another 24 per cent of Russians said that 2011 would be a difficult year for them.

Good health topped the wish list for most Russians (28 per cent). Some 25 per cent of respondensts would like their financial standing and family relationships to improve in 2011. Some 12 per cent focused on improving their living conditions. A total of 7 per cent of respondents would like to buy a new car in 2011.

The poll was conducted on 18-19 December 2010 in 138 settlements in 46 regions and involved 1,600 respondents.)


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