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Putin Gives Top Job To Tank-Factory Worker

A Russian tank passes by a huge portrait of Vladimir Putin. (file photo)
Russian President Vladimir Putin has given a senior government position to a tank-factory worker who had offered to come to Moscow with fellow workers to break up opposition protests against Putin's continued rule.

Igor Kholmanskikh was named Putin's envoy to the Ural Mountains region.

Putin said he expects that Kholmanskikh's new post will help Putin's administration protect the interests of workers.

Kholmanskikh, a section head at the Uralvagonzavod factory that builds battle tanks in the Urals city of Nizhny Tagil, became publicly known when he denounced anti-Putin protesters during Putin's reelection campaign for a third term as president.

Kholmanskikh volunteered to gather a group of colleagues and help clear Moscow streets of anti-Putin demonstrators if police would not do so.

Putin visited Nizhny Tagil earlier this month.

Based on reporting by AP and Interfax