Sergei Skripal: Commons foreign affairs chief says Putin has turned Russia into a mafia empire

Tugenhadt said we must remain vigilant towards Russia

Tom Tugenhadt said Putin and his cronies were ruining Russia

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

The chair of Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee told talkRADIO that Russia has been "taken over by a Mafia gang under the command of a guy called Putin".

Tom Tugenhadt spoke to James Whale and Ash as the fall-out from the alleged poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal continued. Skripal had been convicted of treason in Russia and the apparent assassination attempt against him has been widely linked to Vladimir Putin.

Tugenhadt, a former soldier who is now Tory MP for Tonbridge and Malling, said Russia was a beautiful country but Vladimir Putin and his "whole apparatus of thieves and mafia dons" had turned it into a "Mafia empire".

James and Ash said that, for all the condemnation and outrage against Putin, it's hard to see what can be done to Russia.

Tugenhadt responded that this was nonsense, telling our hosts "you talk about the Russians as if they're all-powerful. They're not. They're basically a mafia dictatorship."

He added that there is a little chance of Britain getting involved in what James described as a "shooting war" with Russia, provided we "invest properly in defence".

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