Russia refuses to extradite criminals

12:45, 30 October 2006
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Ukraine`s Interior Minister worries

Interior Minister Yuriy Lutsenko is worried that Russian law enforcement bodies refused to extradite criminals to Ukraine, according to Ukrayinska Pravda.

      “The Russian Federation drags this question out, if to put it mildly. It usually delays extradition of Ukrainian criminals for a year or more,” Lutsenko said in an interview with Izvestiya V Ukrayine periodical.

      “I understand Russia’s unwillingness to extradite people well-known in both countries. But why do they protect gun-men, murderers, robbers, bandits?,” he wonders.

      Lutsenko has denied information that he is going to create his own political project.

      “Being the Interior Minister is my only political ambition as yet. I don’t prepare any alternate airports or parachutes. Everything is good in its season: I’ll think what to do after my dismissal, if any. All political projects tied with my name have failed,” he urged.

      Lutsenko is now external to any political force: after being appointed the Interior Minister he has quitted Socialist Party and broke with it for good after the party joined the anti-crisis coalition.

      Speaking about his decision to continue working for Yanukovych’s government, Lutsenko assures that he was ready to quit and had submitted his resignation to the President. But Yushchenko persuaded him to stay, saying that Lutsneko’s potential had not been exhausted yet.

      When asked to make comments on mysterious death of witness in former Interior Minister Yuriy Kravchenko’s case, Lutsenko said that he had known about this from the press. The Minister promised to make the information public right after holding thorough investigation.

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