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Russian premier says economy minister's detention is beyond his understanding

November 15, 2016, 19:18 UTC+3

Medvedev has warned that neither ministers, nor lawmakers can get away with corruption-related crimes

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© Alexander Astafyev/Russian Government Press Office/TASS

MOSCOW, November 15. /TASS/. Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said on Tuesday the detention of Russian Minister of Economic Development Aleksey Ulyukayev on suspicion of bribe-taking is beyond his understanding.

"What I want to say over Minister Ulyukayev’s detention: obviously, it is a hard blow both for the authorities and the government," he said at a meeting of the United Russia faction in the Russian State Duma lower parliament house.

"What has happened is beyond my understanding." 

Medvedev has warned that neither ministers, nor lawmakers can get away with corruption-related crimes:

"This situation [with Russian Minister of Economic Development Aleksey Ulyukayev] and other similar situations suggest one inescapable conclusion, a very important conclusion for our country bearing in mind its traditions. Not a state official - neither a minister, nor a lawmaker, nor a governor, nor any other state servant - has immunity if involved in corruption-related crimes," he said at a meeting with the United Russia faction in the Russian State Duma lower parliament house.

According to the Russian prime minister, all government official, including senior and top-ranking officials "can be brought to criminal liability for such crimes." "Naturally, in case their guilt is established in a court verdict," he added.

He stressed that work to further improve Russia’s anti-corruption laws is to be continued.

He said he had discussed the Ulyukayev case with President Vladimir Putin on Monday. "He shares this opinion," Medvedev underscored.

The Russian prime minister noted that Ulyukayev’s case needs a thorough investigation. "I mean all key procedural principles and the system of decision-making in the sphere of criminal law and criminal procedure," he added.

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