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Police Raid Offices Of Russian State News Agency

The Moscow offices of TASS, the Russian government news agency, have been searched by unknown law-enforcement officials.

TASS spokesman Dmitry Pertsev said the February 5 searches by police were connected to the previous professional activities of one of the agency's employees, but did not disclose the employee's name.

Another TASS representative, Natalya Akafyeva, said the searches had nothing to do with the agency's activities.

Media reports in Russia cited employees of the Moscow-based Mikhailov and Partners Communications Agency (M&P) as saying that company's offices were raided on February 5 as well.

M&P was founded by Sergei Mikhailov, who has been the director of TASS since 2012.

In 2004-06, Mikhailov worked as an adviser to Vladimir Yakunin, when he was the president of the state-owned Russian Railways company. Yakunin is a longtime intimate associate and business partner of President Vladimir Putin

He is also believed to have worked for the KGB during Soviet times.

Yakunin's resignation as head of Russian Railways in August has been seen as a sign of a possible conflict within the Kremlin.

Based on reporting by Vedomosti, Business-Gazeta, Rusnovosti and