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Putin considers imprisonment obligatory in fighting corruption

December 10, 2012, 16:21 UTC+3

But “The point is that punishment shall be unavoidable,” the president added

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MOSCOW, December 10 (Itar-Tass) — Russian President Vladimir Putin said imprisonment should be obligatory in the fight against corruption.

At the same time, Putin said, “The point is that punishment shall be unavoidable.”

Putin stressed that the latest anti-corruption cases “are not the campaign. But this is the long-term policy.”

Answering, “Why people are not imprisoned?” the president recognised that he had used this word in the heat of the moment. “What you can say in the heat of the moment. We are all irritated about what has happened,” Putin explained.

“Imprisonment should be obligatory. Such cases are enough. The point is that punishment shall be unavoidable. We should strive for this,” the head of state stressed.

Putin said the authorities would “consistently pursue the policy towards eradicating corruption”. In his view, the problem “can be solved in general”.

At the same time, the president called for fighting corruption not only in top echelons of power, in the Defence Ministry. “We should not forget that people voice concern about what has happened at streets of the cities and villages when officers of corresponding structures blackmail. We should not forget what has happened in social welfare – education and healthcare,” the president said.

“We should be severe and consistent, but we should act under law,” Putin stressed.

In his words, law enforcement agencies should “be competent and professional. They should put the matter through.”

“The process of proving is rather complicated on many corruption cases,” he explained. “One must not give judgement because we’re sure that a person has committed a crime and when evidence is insufficient. Otherwise we’ll go to 1937’s,” Putin warned.

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