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Russian state TV channel airs new program devoted to Putin

MOSCOW — A Russian state-owned television channel has a new weekly current affairs program devoted to President Vladimir Putin.

Rossiya 1 aired the first episode of “Moscow. Kremlin. Putin.” on Sunday night. It stressed Putin’s work to address various crises and to stay in touch with ordinary Russians.

Interviews with Putin’s spokesman and the Kremlin pool reporter who covered the president’s activities last week also were featured in the hour-long program.

The Russian leader’s approval ratings sharply declined in July after the government proposed raising the ages for pension eligibility the previous month.

Asked about the show on Monday, Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters the Kremlin did not commission “Moscow. Kremlin. Putin.” He said that he thought the program was done in a balanced manner.