Medvedev Delays His First State-of-the-Nation Speech

President Dmitry Medvedev has postponed his first state-of-the-nation address and is now expected to deliver it next week, the Kremlin said Tuesday.

The speech to both houses of parliament had been scheduled for Thursday.

A Kremlin spokeswoman said she had no information on why the speech had been postponed, which day it would be delivered and what topics it might cover.

There is an "expectation" that Medvedev will give the speech on Oct. 30, said Andrei Vorobyov, a senior United Russia official and State Duma deputy.

The deputies have not yet received an official invitation for the speech, Vorobyov said.

Nezavisimaya Gazeta reported Tuesday that the reason for the delay might be linked to Medvedev's dissatisfaction over its content about the country's financial crisis. The newspaper, citing a high-placed source, said Medvedev was displeased with the text prepared by his aides and speechwriters and was personally introducing changes to it, particularly to statements about the crisis.

Medvedev has offered few clues about what he would mention in the speech. Speaking at the Presidential Council for Science, Technologies and Education last week, he said the speech would include some of the government's priorities for education.

Former President Vladimir Putin usually delivered the speech in April, but in 2003 he gave it in the second half of May. Speculation swirled at the time that the speech had been delayed because of the U.S.-led war in Iraq or disagreements within the government of then-Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov over administrative reform and the nation's social and economic development program for 2003 to 2005.