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Russia taps media chief

Shvydkoi to head publicly owned media resources

MOSCOW — Mikhail Shvydkoi will head the newly created holding which brings together all of Russia’s publicly owned electronic media resources, covering Channel 2 (RTR), the culture channel Kultura, Radio Russia and regional TV and radio companies.

Shvydkoi has been head of the Kultura channel since its establishment in August 1997, before which his most recent post was as the country’s vice minister of culture.

Though he managed to bring Kultura up to a high standard on very limited funds, his appointment was unexpected, suggesting that he was a compromise candidate who suited all parties involved.

Nikolai Svanidze, who resigned from his post as chief of RTR a week after Russian President Boris Yeltsin’s decree of May 8 announcing the new body, remained among possible contenders for the post, and is set to stay at RTR as a broadcaster.