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Fired Russian major alleges troops fed dog food

by Staff Writers
Moscow (AFP) May 19, 2011
A Russian major dismissed from the interior ministry was ordered to apologise Thursday after posting a video on the Internet purporting to show troops being fed dog food.

Igor Matveyev uploaded the images onto YouTube this week after being dismissed from active service, showing a storeroom full of boxes of cans and labels saying "canned beef" pasted over the labels of a brand of dog food.

"The canned meat has been exchanged for dog food," he says in a voiceover, adding that it could not be ruled out that dog food had been used in feeding troops.

"There is no normal canned meat in stock," he says in the clip, saying that the only genuine canned meat had passed its expiry date.

He also posted a video apparently showing that Chinese migrant workers were sleeping in a storeroom in a breach of security rules.

He identifies his regiment as based in the Far Eastern Russian city of Vladivostok, which is about 50 kilometers (30 miles) from the border with China.

A spokesman for the interior troops' eastern regional command told the RIA Novosti agency that Matveyev was dismissed from active duty on May 12 for systematic disciplinary offences.

The command told the agency the dog food was being used to feed police dogs and was simply stored with human food, although it confirmed the regiment had housed Chinese migrants who did repair work.

"We will ask Matveyev to officially apologise for casting a shadow on all subdivisions of the interior ministry troops," the command's spokesman Alexei Borovitsky told the RIA Novosti news agency.

The interior ministry command accused Matveyev of posting the videos in an attempt to "hold onto his service post and whitewash himself."

Matveyev told the agency he intended to contest his dismissal in court and added that what the video on youtube was only the "tip of the iceberg" of corrupt activity in the service.

Corruption is rampant in the Russian interior ministry, and has been exposed in a number of whistleblowing videos posted on YouTube.

The first such video campaign was launched in 2009 by a police major Alexei Dymovsky in the southern city of Novorossiisk, who has also been fired from his job.

The video can be seen at http://www.youtube.com/user/IVMatveev#p/u/1/syzgPosDS8U



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