Several Russian regional governors resign as sanctions start to bite

11 May, 01:35 PM
Vladimir Putin (Photo:Sputnik/Mikhail Metzel)

Vladimir Putin (Photo:Sputnik/Mikhail Metzel)

Four Russian regional governors resigned in one day, presumably over Western sanctions introduced after Moscow launched anunprovoked full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Reuters reported on May 10.

The governors of Russia’s Tomsk, Saratov, Kirov, and Mariy El regions have all resigned, while the governor of Ryazan announced he won’t seek re-election in September.

Some of these regions saw the popularity and influence of Russian dictator Vladimir Putin’s United Russia political party decline in last year’s parliamentary elections.

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Unpopular Russians governors are routinely fired.

According to Illya Grashchenkov, head of the Moscow Centre for the Development of Regional Politics think-tank, the Kremlin is removing weak governors as Russia’s economy starts to hurt from Western sanctions.

“There’s a need to restructure the economy, especially in those regions where Western economic influence had been significant; these governors need to be replaced by younger alternatives,” said Grashchenkov.

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