Russian Defence Ministry denies resignation by top Army General

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Moscow, Mar 27 (UNI) Russian Defence Ministry has officially denied media reports about frequent resignations submitted by top Army General allegedly annoyed by the decisions of Defence Minister Anatoly Serdyukov.

''Big-name resignation reports do not exist,'' the Ministry said today.

Earlier this week, Russian media outlets reported about large-scale resignations of the several top-ranking officers led by Chief of the General Staff Yuri Baluyevsky.

Russian news agencies reported that high-ranking officers opposed the reforms initiated by Mr Serdyukov, including stripping certain positions of their military status, privatisation of military assets and redundancy of Ministry's personnel.

Gen Baluyevsky attended yesterday the meeting of Military and Industrial Commission, which focused on the progress in the state order implementation and on the state armament programme for 2011 to 2020.

Defence analysts claimed the reports about clashes in the Defence Ministry's leadership were not groundless.

''The talks about contradictions between civil minister and generals are the splash of transition period,'' Defence Ministry's Public Council Commission chairman Vitaly Shlykov said.

The Minister brought a lot of civil officials with him, the army officers are annoyed and grumbling, Mr Shlykov told leading business daily Kommersant published today.

President Vladimir Putin brought Mr Serdyukov, son-in-law of Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov, from Russian tax office to head the Defence Ministry.

Meanwhile, Russian communists have expressed their concern over the privatisation of land used for defence facilities and stripping big groups of the military status.

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