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Russian Police Chief Fired After Boy's Death

St. Petersburg police chief General Mikhail Sukhodolsky has been dismissed.
President Dmitry Medvedev has dismissed the police chief of St. Petersburg, where a 15-year-old boy died after allegedly being beaten while in police custody.

An Interior Ministry spokesman told Russian television that General Mikhail Sukhodolsky was sacked because of "systemic failures, including those linked to staff training".

Medvedev's decree gave no reason for his dismissal.

Sukhodolsky had been quoted as saying an Interior Ministry investigation into the boy's death was a "destabilizing factor" at a time when police had a heavy workload ahead of the March 4 presidential election.

The boy's death has caused public indignation in the city, the home town of both Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, and a major center of protests over the conduct of recent parliamentary elections,

Compiled from agency reports