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Vladimir Putin:"the system of running the country of executive authorities in Russia should be adapted to work in crisis situations"
Russian President Vladimir Putin said it is necessary to overhaul the system of running the country. He was speaking at a special meeting of cabinet ministers and regional governors on Monday. According to Mr. Putin, the system of executive authorities in Russia should be adapted to work in crisis situations, and it should be rebuilt with the aim of strengthening the country and averting crises. After the Beslan tragedy, it is necessary to ensure the unity of the country, strengthen the government structure, boost confidence in the government, and build an effective system of internal security. “Compassion on the part of the government is not enough,” the President said. It is necessary to enhance the effectiveness of government agencies in solving the whole range of problems. In his opinion, the integrity of the country is vital for defeating terrorism, as the planners and perpetrators of terrorist acts seek to disintegrate the country. Vladimir Putin also proposed the introduction of a proportional electoral system for elections to the State Duma, the lower house of the Russian parliament. The bill will be submitted to the State Duma shortly. In Mr. Putin’s opinion, top regional officials should be nominated by the President of Russia. In this case, the system of executive authorities in regions will be based on the same principles as the Russian government. Vladimir Putin said he would submit the bill to the State Duma before the end of the year. The President asked the government and regional governors to prepare their proposals on the bill. He said regional governors should cooperate closer with the heads of municipal institutions. In particular, they should help local officials in their “everyday work with people” and exercise a stronger influence on the formation of local self-governance institutions. In view of this, Vladimir Putin asked the government and the Presidium of the State Council to offer their proposals on the issue. The President also called for setting up a public chamber to assess the performance of government agencies. In his opinion, this chamber will control the work of the government machine, including interior affairs departments. Mr. Putin suggested that security agencies should cooperate closer with people, and pay more attention to their appeals. According to Mr. Putin, nationwide parties should become a tool of the joint fight of the public and the authorities against terror. The fight against terrorism must become a nationwide cause in the full sense of the word. “We must support the initiatives of citizens in their desire to combat terror,” he stressed. In addition, the Russian leader supported the idea of setting up volunteer structures to protect social order. In his view, such structures would help law enforcement agencies to detect corruption and fight against crime and terror. Mr. Putin stressed that the fight against terrorism was a nationwide problem, and all government resources should be mobilized to solve it. In the first place, it is necessary to ensure the unity of the country, coordinated actions of the executive authorities and united actions of the state authorities and the public. The President proposed toughening punishment for administrative offences that had grave consequences. He urged the State Duma to find legal loopholes in that sphere. The President said it was necessary to create a system allowing to find criminals abroad. He asked security agencies to boost cooperation with foreign intelligence services and thoroughly investigate the Beslan tragedy. “These are important and necessary measures,” Mr. Putin stressed. He called for liquidating extremist organizations hiding under “religious and other phraseology”. At the same time, the President admitted that terrorists took advantage of flaws in Russia’s social and economic policy in the North Caucasus. Mr. Putin added that government structures in the region were not strong enough. Average per capita incomes are much lower in the North Caucasus than average in Russia. Child mortality is high. So far, Russia had not achieved any visible results in eradicating the cause of terrorism, the President stressed. Mr. Putin nominated Dmitry Kozak as his envoy to the South Federal District of Russia. Vladimir Yakovlev was nominated as Russia’s Minister for National Policy Affairs. Mr. Kozak was also appointed Chairman of the Federal Commission for the North Caucasus.
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