Head of Russian Space Systems Urlichich will be dismissed this week - Roscosmos

The Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) has sent a motion to the Economic Development Ministry on the dismissal of Yury Urlichich from the post of general director of Russian Space Systems company following the discovery of instances of misuse of public funds, Roscosmos head Vladimir Popovkin announced at a press conference at mission control near Moscow.

"We have sent documents to the Economic Development Ministry on dismissing Mr. Urlichich from the post of head of Russian Space Systems. I believe all decisions will be made this week," Popovkin said.

He said Roscosmos learned about the misuse of money from state funds in summer last year.

"We have taken a number of preventive measures. Based on the results of what happened we appointed our own commission that worked at Russian Space Systems. We discovered the misuse of 565 million rubles (about $18 million)," Popovkin aid.

He said that in September 2011 the findings were sent to the Interior Ministry for an additional probe and if need be, for launching a criminal case.

Simultaneously Roscosmos revised all the contracts that had been signed with Russian Space Systems and transferred all settlements related to GLONASS to state-owned banks, he said.

"The things that happened [at Russian Space Systems] were stopped in August last year after which a probe and investigation were conducted," Popovkin said.

He said that the motion on the dismissal of Urlichich "was made to prevent anyone from obstructing the investigation."

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