Cabinet Reshuffle Expected Sooner Or Later – Russian PM

BLAGOVESHCHENSK, May 26 (RIA Novosti) – Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has said dismissals are quite possible amid criticism of the Cabinet’s work and has instructed his ministers to work hard.

“The government’s resignation will necessarily take place, the question is only when,” Medvedev said in the Central Television with Vadim Takmenyov program on NTV on Sunday.

“I am a more seasoned soldier than many of my colleagues. I told them: guys, you hold still and work, because sooner or later you will be all sacked anyway. This is life,” Medvedev said.

He added however that if an official is sacked it does not mean that this is “forever.” “It is not the Soviet time, because we have a modern political system, and people can come and go. It seems normal to me.”

Medvedev said being out of power does not mean a tragedy to him. “I think a person should be ready to quit power, in a broad sense, as soon as he is appointed to the post.”

Answering a question whether he regrets about not pursuing the second term, he said: “You know, everyone has time when he has to quit job and write memoirs,” adding: “I have no regrets.”

Medvedev has also described his relations with President Putin as “friendly” saying: “Otherwise, maybe, there would have been another government today.”

Speculation in the Russian media about possible Cabinet dismissals has been mounting amid rumors of the Cabinet’s inefficiency since Medvedev traded the presidency for the premiership with Vladimir Putin in May 2012.

The Russian government has drawn criticism lately, including from President Putin, over its failure to present a program for diversifying the country’s economy away from its dependence on high oil prices, Russia’s key export commodity, and spur its faltering economic growth.

Updated with quote about relations with Putin in para 7.

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