State Duma adopts power bloc reform law

The State Duma has adopted, in the third /final reading, the presidential law regulating the reform of the country's power bloc as 393 deputies voted affirmative and 1 abstained, with 226 votes needed to pass the law. The document will now be forwarded to the Federation Council for consideration.

The law provides legislative support for the implementation of Vladimir Putin's decrees dated March 11, 2003, which closed down the Russian Federal Border Service, or the FPS, and the presidential Federal Agency of Government Communications and Information, or the FAPSI. The FPS ceases to exist as an independent federal executive authority and becomes part of the Federal Security Service, or the FSB, with the structure of border guards' service remaining practically unchanged. The FAPSI, in the meantime, is being liquidated as a federal executive authority, while its functions are being transferred partially to the FSB and partially to the Federal Guard Service.

The Federal Tax Police Service, too, is being closed down and its functions passed on to the specially set up units inside the country's Interior Ministry.

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