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Russian justice minister, prosecutor general switched in Putin shakeup

[JURIST] Two Russian officials switched roles Thursday, as President Vladimir Putin appointed former Prosecutor General Vladimir Ustinov [MosNews profile] to the justice minister post several hours after former Justice Minister Yury Chaika was approved as the new prosecutor general in a 91-1 vote by the Federation Council [official website], the upper house of parliament. Ustinov resigned from the justice minister post [JURIST report] on June 2, and Chaika was nominated by Putin [JURIST report] on Monday.

Though both Putin and Federation Council members stressed Friday that Ustinov's June 2 resignation was a non-political decision, he stepped down after the Council, acting on Putin's recommendation, unanimously called for his removal. Ustinov spent the majority of his time as Prosecutor General embroiled in the criminal case against former Russian oil magnate Mikhail Khodorkovsky [MosNews profile; JURIST news archive] who was convicted of tax evasion and is now incarcerated in a Siberian prison [JURIST reports]. RIA Novosti has local coverage of the Ustinov and Chaika installations.

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