Russia's finance minister quits

September 26, 2011 - 12:15 PM
Russia Elections

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev waves as he leaves the podium after his speech during a United Russia party congress in Moscow on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2011. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has proposed Vladimir Putin as presidential candidate for 2012, almost certainly guaranteeing Putin's return to office. Medvedev made the proposal Saturday in an address to a congress of United Russia, the pro-Kremlin party that dominates Russian politics. (AP Photo/RIA-Novosti, Yekaterina Shtukina, Presidential Press Service)

MOSCOW (AP) — The Kremlin says Russia's influential finance minister has resigned following a televised confrontation with President Dmitry Medvedev.

Medvedev had angrily demanded that Alexei Kudrin immediately explain his criticism of Medvedev's policies or step down.

The open tension within Russia's leadership follows the announcement over the weekend that Prime Minister Vladimir Putin plans to return to the presidency next year and Medvedev would then take his old job as prime minister.

The departure of Kudrin on Monday is likely to unsettle investors, who have seen the fiscally conservative finance minister as key to Russia's economic stability.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

MOSCOW (AP) — The Kremlin says Russia's influential finance minister has resigned following a televised confrontation with President Dmitry Medvedev.

Medvedev had angrily demanded that Alexei Kudrin immediately explain his criticism of Medvedev's policies or step down.

The open tension within Russia's leadership follows the announcement over the weekend that Prime Minister Vladimir Putin plans to return to the presidency next year and Medvedev would then take his old job as prime minister.

The departure of Kudrin on Monday is likely to unsettle investors, who have seen the fiscally conservative finance minister as key to Russia's economic stability.