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Rodionov said Ready to Become New Defence Minister

Moscow, June 25 (RFE/RL) -- Colonel-General Igor Rodionov, the man tipped to become Russia's new defence minister, said today he would accept the post if it was offered to him.

Rodionov was named by Security Council Chief Alexander Lebed at the weekend as a possible replacement for Pavel Grachev who was sacked last week.

It is not clear whether Russian President Boris Yeltsin supports Lebed's choice.

Rodionov, who is head of Russia's Army Staff Academy, told Interfax news agency today that he had not received a job offer from Yeltsin. But he said he would accept the post of defence minister if it came.