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Russia blames Google for Egyptian revolt

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Russian deputy prime minister and energy minister Igor Sechin has blamed Google for unrest in Egypt, accusing the search giant of "manipulations of the energy of the people".

The comments were made during an apparently ill-tempered interview about the investment climate in Russia with the Wall Street Journal.

The interview transcript shows Sechin reacting badly to the reporter's opening question about how Russia's government could convince investors that it can be trusted.

Sechin insisted that Russia has changed radically in the last 25 years and is one of the world's most stable political systems.

The reporter responded: "Mubarak probably said the same thing." Sechin said he wasn't prepared for such questions, but said the situation needed to be closely examined.

Sechin said: "Look what they have done in Egypt, those highly-placed managers of Google, what manipulations of the energy of the people took place there."

Sechin is a long-time ally of Putin and seen as one of the more conservative members of the cabinet.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev warned yesterday that "the disintegration of big, densely populated countries... would mean fires for decades and the further spread of extremism".

Other officials objecting to Western support for the unrest said revolutions often start like February, but end like October - references to the two Russian revolutions of 1917. ®

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