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Russia promises economic boost in Crimea

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SIMFEROPOL, Crimea (KNOE 8/AP) - Russia's prime minister has made a surprise visit to Crimea--where he vowed to quickly pour money into the region that has been annexed by Russia.

Dmitry Medvedev says residents should see some positive changes in the aftermath of the Russian takeover. He's promising that Russia will quickly boost salaries and pensions, and provide resources to improve education and health care.

He also says there will be a special economic zone there that will offer incentives for business including lower taxes and simpler rules.

Medvedev particularly emphasized the need to ensure a stable power supply for the peninsula.

Meanwhile, in Kiev, Ukraine's acting president today flatly rejected Russian pressure to turn Ukraine into a loose federation. He said Ukrainians should be the ones to decide "the form of the new constitution and how the country is structured."

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