12:22 Sep. 21, 2016
Ministry for State Security would be established before Russia's 2018 presidential elections
Russia plans effectively to revive the KGB under a massive shake-up of its security forces, a respected business daily has reported.
A State Security Ministry, or MGB, would be created from the current Federal Security Service (FSB) , and would incorporate the foreign intelligence service (SVR) and the state guard service (FSO), under the plans.
It would be handed all-encompassing powers once possessed by the KGB, the Kommersant newspaper said, citing security service sources.
Like the much-feared KGB, it would also oversee the prosecutions of Kremlin critics, a task currently undertaken by the Investigative Committee, headed by Alexander Bastrykin, a former university classmate of President Putin.
The MGB is expected to be in operation before the 2018 presidential elections, which could see Mr Putin secure a fourth term of office that would keep him in power until 2024.
Mr Putin served as a KGB officer in Soviet-era East Germany, and is also thought to have been responsible for keeping tabs on dissidents in his hometown of Leningrad, now St Petersburg.