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Moscow tells Belarusian ambassador of impersmissibility of Uralkali CEO detention

August 27, 2013, 14:14 UTC+3
Such actions do not correspond to the allied bilateral relations, diplomat says
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Photo ITAR-TASS achive

Photo ITAR-TASS achive

MOSCOW, August 27 (Itar-Tass) - Belarusian Ambassador to Russia Igor Petrishenko was invited to the Russian Foreign Ministry on Tuesday where he met with State Secretary/Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Grigory Karasin to discuss the situation regarding the detention of Director General of the Uralkali company Vladislav Baumgertner in Minsk.

"Russia stated that the detention of the businessman who was in Belarus on invitation of the republic's prime minister for the solution of important issues of Russian-Belarusian economic interaction was impermissible," a representative of the Ministry said.

"The fact of detaining Baumgertner and the information campaign around it does not correspond to the allied relations between our countries and might influence the schedule of Russian-Belarusian political contacts. It was underlined that Moscow demanded the release of the Russian citizen and the explanations regarding the incident," he said.

The envoy promised to bring the Russian statement to the notice of the Belarusian leadership.

Uralkali director general Vladislav Baumgartner was detained in Minsk on Monday. The Belarusian authorities accuse him of misuse of 100 million dollars and said they would check the activity of the key company owner, Suleiman Kerimov, whose fund has a 21.75-percent stake in Uralkali.

The Belarusian Investigative Committee said Baumgartner had been arrested on the strength of the materials on company top managers' abuse of office powers. It caused damage to the state and public interests of Belarus, as well as to Belaruskali and the Belarusian Potassium Company.

The Russian Embassy in Belarus has not yet received a response to its note to the Belarusian Foreign Ministry requesting a meeting between consulate personnel and Baumgartner.

Meanwhile, the Belarusian SK said Interpol had issued wanted notices for four top managers of the Belarusian Potassium Company /BKK/: BKK board member Oleg Petrov, first deputy director general Konstantin Solodovnikov, deputy director general for finance Igor Yevstratov and head of the freight department Dmitry Samoilov.

Mikhail Fedotov, head of the human rights council under the Russian president, said he was surprised at the Baumgartner's detention in Minsk. "It's an unprecedented story. I'm absolutely bewildered," Fedotov told a news briefing.

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