Ex-PM Fradkov appointed as Russia's foreign intelligence chief

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Moscow, Oct 6 (UNI) President Vladimir Putin today appointed former Prime Minister Mikhail Fradkov as head of Russia's Foreign Intelligence Service.

''You all know well the man, who will head the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service - this is Mikhail Fradkov,'' President Putin told journalists, currently on a visit to Dushanbe, capital of Tajikistan, for attending three regional summits.

Mr Fradkov will replace Sergei Lebedev, who occupied the post since 2000 and was selected yesterday to head the Executive Committee of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), a loose union of former Soviet republics.

President Putin fired Mr Fradkov from the post of the Prime Minister on September 12, replacing him with Viktor Zubkov.

He said Grigory Rapota, former secretary general of the Eurasian Economic Community (Eurasec) organisation, will be appointed presidential envoy to the Russian Southern Federal District.

Eurasec is an international economic organisation, consisting of Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan. Armenia, Moldova and Ukraine have an observer status.

''Grigory Rapota worked well and effectively and we have reached positive results in Eurasec largely due to his efforts,'' RIA Novosti quoted President Putin as saying.

Mr Rapota will take the post which was held previously by current Minister of Regional Development Dmitry Kozak.

Mr Kozak was appointed to his new post in a major cabinet reshuffle, which came 12 days after the dismissal of Mr Fradkov.


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