Is Russia a 'mafia state'?


The latest batch of secret US embassy cables published by the Wikileaks website reveals fears about links between the Russian government and organised crime.

In one confidential document, US diplomats in Madrid record a top Spanish judge, who has experience in organised crime cases, describing Russia as a "virtual mafia state".

BBC Newsnight's Emily Maitlis asked the former British ambassador to Moscow, Sir Tony Brenton and Anders Aslund, a former economic adviser to the Russian government, whether there is evidence to suggest a link between organised crime and the Russian government.

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