In its first session of the New Year, the newly elected State Duma completed a key step in Russia's efforts to join the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development's by ratifying the group's
Duma deputies signed the Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials on Friday
to "enhance the attractiveness of the national economy and attract investment," Kommersant reported.
The move, along with Russia's completing negotiations for WTO membership, has been widely viewed as among the most important steps in securing a place in the OECD.
The legislature also on Friday elected
Notable appointees from United Russia included world chess champion Anatoly Karpov, who became first deputy head of the natural resources committee, and Soviet-era singer Iosif Kobzon, who was named first deputy head of the culture committee.
Dzakhan Pollyeva, a former aide to President Dmitry Medvedev, became the Duma's chief of staff, RIA-Novosti
The meeting marks the second time the Duma has assembled since the widely challenged parliamentary elections on Dec. 4, which were rife with allegations of voting fraud.
An effort by the minority parties to investigate the Dec. 4 voting results was promptly
The Duma did, however,
Lawmakers also decided to consider in February amendments to simplify registration requirements for political parties, RIA-Novosti