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Official Quits Over Tender

The Health and Social Development Ministry official who earlier this month ordered a tender worth 55 million rubles ($1.8 million) to create a social networking web site for doctors in just two weeks has resigned, Interfax reported Thursday.

Oleg Simakov filed a voluntary resignation, a ministry spokesman said, without elaborating. Critics said it was impossible to create such a site in two weeks and suggested that the tender was rigged. The ministry canceled the tender Tuesday, but said it only did so to stop the media frenzy and will reschedule it for an unspecified date.

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