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Russian Duma to consider Kyoto this month

MOSCOW, Oct. 5 (UPI) -- Russia's parliament will debate ratification of the Kyoto Protocol this month, Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Zhukov announced Tuesday.

Zhukov made the announcement after a meeting with President Vladimir Putin and senior government officials, the Itar-Tass news agency said.

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Last week, the government approved the environmental protocol and sent it to the Duma for ratification, where heated debate is expected, the report said.

Presidential economic adviser Andrei Illarionov is one who opposes the accord, and called its ratification a "forced political decision" that "would do damage in the short, medium and long term."

President Vladimir Putin vowed earlier this year to get the protocol ratified.

Regardless, Illarionov said the Duma's main goal should be to "minimize the consequences," and he called for the government "to be honest with people and understand that this will affect every Russian."

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