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Serdyukov Isn't Quitting, Official Says

A government official on Thursday denied a newspaper report that Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has recommended that Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov resign amid a dispute with an influential union of former paratroopers, Interfax reported.

The Argumenti Nedeli newspaper, citing an unidentified senior military source, also said Nikolai Makarov, chief of the General Staff, was interested in Serdyukov's job.

But the government official, who declined to be identified, told Interfax that the publication is “nonsense” and “paid journalism.”

The All-Russia Paratroopers Union criticized Serdyukov in a video Monday for ordering a commander in the Ryazan region to demolish a church at a paratroopers academy on Sept. 30.

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