Putin appoints new governor of Khabarovsk
Russian President Vladimir Putin has appointed Mikhail Degtyarev, a member of the Duma, as the new governor of the Khabarovsk region in the far east of Russia following the arrest of the former governor Sergei Furgal. Like Furgal, Degtyarev is a member of the populist Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR). There have been mass protests in Khabarovsk since Furgal's imprisonment. The press doubts that the newcomer will appease the protesters.
A bad choice for this rebellious province
in a Facebook post published by newsru.com, publicist Kirill Schulika argues that the new governor is not suitable for the job:
“Furgal is popular as a local politician who won an election against 'United Russia', which his supporters see as a victory against Moscow. ... Degtyarev has no clout whatsover, either in Khabarovsk or in the Duma. ... Going by his biography he will have no authority in Khabarovsk - either among voters or among the local elite. On the contrary, he will be seen as a representative of the very Moscow that imprisoned the popular Furgal. ... In short, this is the worst possible move. And it shows that the Kremlin has completely misjudged the situation in the Far East.”
The feudal state of the eternal president
This appointment has all the hallmarks of early feudalism, liberal journalist Leonid Gosman writes on Echo of Moscow:
“Why was an LDPR man been appointed? Those who briefed Putin about the situation in Khabarovsk should know that the people there didn't go out onto the streets in the name of this oh-so-grand party, but for the governor they elected. ... The whole country and everything that lives in it belongs to the president. But the other feudal lords also have their rights, and as a wise leader he avoids violating them. Since events led to Khabarovsk being part of the LDPR zone, it should jolly well stay that way. And all the other dukes will see that even if they fall out of favour and wind up in some dungeon, the duchy won't be touched.”