Russian Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev said Thursday that 5,000 people left police service in July.
"The shortage of personnel is great. I would say that it is already critical. We have 5,000 employees who left the internal affairs bodies last month. Difficult situation," the Interior Ministry press service cited Kolokoltsev in a statement.
Kolokoltsev did not provide information about the reason for the departures but said law enforcement employees "are obliged to do everything to minimize risks, first of all, in order to guarantee the protection of legitimate rights and freedoms to the population."
He emphasized the necessity of "moral and psychological work with employees."
"It (work) should be aimed at uniting teams, strengthening discipline and be based on principles that remain unchanged at all times -- loyalty to duty and oath," he said, adding that this is one of the priorities that directly affects the effectiveness of the Interior Ministry system.