The Russian government under Vladimir Putin has amassed so much central authority that the power-grab may undermine Moscow's commitment to democracy, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said.
"In any country, if you don't have countervailing institutions, the power of any one president is problematic for democratic development," Rice told reporters Saturday after meeting with human-rights activists.
"I think there is too much concentration of power in the Kremlin. I have told the Russians that. Everybody has doubts about the full independence of the judiciary. There are clearly questions about the independence of the electronic media and there are, I think, questions about the strength of the Duma," said Rice, referring to the Russian parliament.