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Russian Whistle-Blower Pulls Back Cover on Railways Corruption

A Eurasianet partner post from RFE/RL

When the head of Russia's state-owned railroad monopoly was abruptly dismissed last year, the announcement stopped many in and out of Russia in their tracks.
 
Vladimir Yakunin was considered to be one of President Vladimir Putin's closest associates, and his neighbor back in the 1990s in an exclusive real estate development known as Ozero. Though he had been hit with U.S. sanctions over Russia's seizure of Crimea from Ukraine, many within Russia assumed he was untouchable.
 
After his dismissal, Yakunin was offered a seat in Russia's upper house of parliament. He ended up refusing, instead establishing a nongovernmental organization called Dialogue of Civilizations, and was given a medal by Putin.
 
But some observers suspected a different motive for his departure, speculating that the Kremlin was concerned that at a time when cash was scarce, he had been enriching himself while corruption and mismanagement had made Russian Railways embarrassingly dependent on state subsidies.
 
Sprawling Corruption
 

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Copyright (c) 2016. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

A Eurasianet partner post from RFE/RL

Russian Whistle-Blower Pulls Back Cover on Railways Corruption

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