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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Putin Intervenes to Lift Ban on Kommersant

The conflict between Kommersant and federal fire inspectors, who shut down the newspaper last Friday for safety violations, was resolved Wednesday after Prime Minister Vladimir Putin intervened.

The newspaper, which was recently bought by tycoon Boris Berezovsky, accused the Moscow city government, headed by Berezovsky rival Mayor Yury Luzhkov, of being behind the closure. Luzhkov denied the allegations.

Putin met Wednesday with a group of newspaper editors. Russian television showed editors Mikhail Kozhokin of Izvestia and Mikhail Berger of Segodnya along with Kommersant's general director Leonid Miloslavsky attending the meeting.

"I can state with satisfaction that the conflict, which has cost us so much anxiety, can be considered over," Miloslavsky said in footage broadcast by ORT television. "It is sad that it took the prime minister to intervene."

Putin said that safety agencies and municipal services should not be turned into an instrument of political pressure against mass media. "There must not be media regulation through communal services, and there will not be any," Putin was quoted by Interfax as saying.

Kommersant spokeswoman Irina Orestova said in a telephone interview Wednesday afternoon that hours after the meeting with Putin, the publishing house received a notice from the fire department that the ban had been lifted. Most of the firefighters' requirements have been fulfilled, she said. . TX.- Kommersant only missed one day's edition because of the ban. It was back on the street Wednesday, hinting that other newspapers had come to its assistance. Orestova refused to discuss the details. "We managed," she said. "The world is full of kind people."