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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Finance Head: Rumors of Exit 'Untrue'

Finance Minister Vladimir Panskov on Thursday denied reports that he was quitting his post in protest of presidential spending pledges and brushed aside a demand from opponents that he be dismissed over Russia's wage arrears crisis.

The newspaper Segodnya reported Thursday that Panskov and three other deputies, had submitted a letters of resignation to President Boris Yeltsin as a "demonstration" of their disagreement with his pronouncements on social spending that threaten the 1996 budget.

Panskov described such media reports as "untrue," Interfax reported, while a Finance Ministry spokeswoman Thursday described the Segodnya report as "groundless rumors."

The Liberal Democratic Party of Russia, headed by Vladimir Zhirinovsky, submitted Thursday a draft resolution in the State Duma, parliament's lower house, demanding the dismissal of Panskov, Itar-Tass reported. The news agency cited Duma Speaker Gennady Seleznyov, as saying that the body will consider the resolution Friday.

The LDPR resolution calls on the Duma to declare the Finance Ministry's work unsatisfactory, "in connection with the aggravation of the nonpayments crisis" and other budget problems. If passed, such a resolution would not be legally binding.

Panskov dismissed the move as "an emotional outburst," but he would honestly consider it if it passed, Interfax said.

added that if it passed the Duma, he would have to consider the situation "in all honesty," Interfax reported.