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Putin Tells State Bank To Bail Out Bankrupt Travel Operator

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and presidential candidate Vladimir Putin
Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has instructed a state bank to bail out a bankrupt travel company that has left thousands of Russian tourists stranded abroad.

Russia's VTB bank has confirmed it will issue a loan to Lanta-Tur Voyage to ensure that the tourists in Thailand, Vietnam, the Dominican Republic and other countries holding worthless travel vouchers from the company can return home.

"We need to help this agency pay its foreign partners so our citizens can complete their vacations without any worry and return to their homeland according to their contracts with the agency, for the money they already paid," said Putin, who is the frontrunner in upcoming presidential elections scheduled for March 4.

Putin instructed Russia's sports and tourism minister, Vitaly Mutko, to personally intervene in the case.

compiled from agency reports