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Fired Defense Minister Handed Over 'Nuclear Briefcase' to Successor

Fired Defense Minister Handed Over 'Nuclear Briefcase' to Successor 07.11.2012
Text: Lenta.ru
Photo: reuters.com
Being dismissed from the post of Russian Minister of Defense, Anatoly Serdiukov handed over "nuclear briefcase" to his successor Sergei Shoigu, reports RIA Novosti today referring to a source in defense ministry.

Shoigu has already come into new office. In particular, he took over a device interfacing with duty crews of Strategic Missile Force (so-called 'nuclear briefcase'), reports RIA Novosti. The Supreme Commander (President of the Russian Federation) and Chief of General Staff control other two 'briefcases'.

Russia got new defense minister on Nov 6. President Putin dismissed Serdiukov and appointed the then-Governor of Moscow Region Sergei Shoigu to his post.

Putin explained the Serdiukov's ouster as a wish to ensure impartial investigation of the scandal in defense ministry. The question was JSC Oboronservis which officers were charged of fraud. Reportedly, the ex-minister now can be questioned as a witness.

Serdiukov was appointed Minister of Defense in 2007. He is known for a military reform, large-scale reduction of officers and strength of Russian Armed Forces in general. Prior to appointment, Shoigu governed Moscow Region, and before that he had been heading Russian Ministry of Emergencies (EMERCOM) for 18 years.

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