Prokhorov Dumped from Commission as Russian Intrigue Intensifies

Onexim

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has dumped Mikhail Prokhorov from the country's Modernization Commission, Prokhorov's most high-profile role in Russian politics. It had been reported that he was merely disinvited from the commission's meeting Monday but now media say he's been :"excluded" from the group.

The president's office said Prokhorov's removal was part of normal "rotation" in the commission membership, but few believed that his attack on the Russian political system last weekend wasn't a factor. Prokhorov, who served on the commission for three years, blogged Sunday he knew it was "50/50" that he'd be dumped. He added, "I still was willing to continue to work on the commission, despite the current political situation". This, he said, "adds clarity."

Meanwhile, London's Financial Times reports on the original plan for Prokhorov. He was to gain control of "Right Cause" so Medvedev could have an independent party if he decided to run for re-election against Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. With Prokhorov's ouster, that idea collapsed and Medvedev on Saturday announced he'd step aside so Putin could run again, virtually unopposed.

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