Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree on relieving Railways Minister Nikolai Aksenenko of his post, RIA Novosti was told on Thursday at the Kremlin press service. It said that Aksenenko's demotion was proposed by Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov at a working meeting with the Russian president on Thursday. The Government Information Department earlier reported to RIA Novosti that the railways minister tendered resignation. Aksenenko believes, said the Department, that his resignation will create more favourable conditions for work of his sector. He also motivates his decision by thinking himself morally responsible for the problems which have emerged in the sphere under his jurisdiction.
The Russian Armed Forces returned to strategic positions of the first "Surovikin line” east of Robotyne in the Zaporizhzhia direction of hostilities