MOSCOW, Sept. 16 (UPI) -- Russian President Dmitry Medvedev is showing more independence from his mentor and predecessor, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, analysts say.
In a question-and-answer sessions with a group of international and domestic academics and journalists Tuesday at the Kremlin, Medvedev reiterated and strengthened themes he first sounded last week in an article in which he harshly criticized the political system created by Putin, denouncing what he called its systemic corruption, its reliance on a "primitive" resource-based economy and its lack of democratic transparency, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Medvedev also indicated he could run again for the presidency in 2012, by which time Putin would be constitutionally allowed to run again himself. Some analysts, however, believe Putin may not be interested in reclaiming the presidency because its powers have been weakened and may instead now see the prime minister's post as the more powerful position.
Medvedev reportedly asserted that Russia must wean itself from reliance on oil and gas revenues.
"(Last week's) article was the first day of Mr. Medvedev's presidency," Nikolai Zlobin, director of the Russia and Eurasia program at the Washington think tank Center for Defense Information, told the Journal.