Install

Get the latest updates as we post them — right on your browser

. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

09/03/1997

Free access archive

Compromise Alters Little in Religion Bill

An advisory council has finished what it says is a compromise version of legislation restricting activities of so-called nontraditional religions in Russia, but both its backers and opponents said Tuesday that the changes are mainly cosmetic. The Moscow Patriarchate of the Russian Orthodox Church, a strong backer of the original bill passed by parliament, gave its blessing Tuesday to the proposed amendments. Much depends now on whether they will pass muster with President Boris Yeltsin, who vetoed the original bill after strong protests from the West and from domestic minority religions groups. Both supporters and opponents of the law said Tuesday that the amendments would not change the essence of the bill, aimed at restricting the activities of new cults and religions in Russia. When parliament passed the law in July, it sparked an outcry in the West and among Russia's minority churches, including the Catholic church and Protestant denominations. The U.S.

Controversial Fund Hires Ousted Privatization Head

Alfred Kokh, recently ousted as the Kremlin's privatization chief, has taken a new job as head of a Moscow-based investment fund tied to First Deputy Prime Minister Anatoly Chubais, a government source said Tuesday. The Montes Auri fund became embroiled in controversy this summer when it admitted to investing money on behalf of a charity organization headed by Chubais. That organization, called Civil Accord, was launched with a 14 billion ruble ($3 million) interest-free loan provided by Stolichny Bank in 1996, when Chubais had no official Kremlin post. ""I saw Kokh today and he confirmed that he has accepted the job,"" said former Kokh aide Viktoria Vergelskaya, who works with new privatization chief Maxim Boiko, another Chubais ally. ""Kokh would like to refrain from making any other comments at this time."" It was not immediately clear when Kokh had accepted the offer.

Most Read

advertising
Moscow Directory