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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

A brief look at the stories making headlines in the Russian-language press


This story reports on how presidential administration head Nikolai Bordyuzha commented on the march staged by Russian National Unity over the weekend. Bordyuzha said in part that it showed that "the authorities are helpless to prevent such acts."

American multimillionaire Kenneth Dart has made fierce attempts to establish control over Russian oil companies. His firms own packages of stock (about 10 percent) in Tomskneft and Noyabrskneftegaz, which is not enough for control but which is quite enough to temporarily paralyze their activities. The story features Dart's coalition comprised of former "red directors" - heads of the Eastern Oil Company - and Tomsk regional bureaucrats. This story also describes his behind-the-scenes contacts with Russian oligarchies.

According to the decision made by the International Marine Organization, the SOS distress signal will cease to exist starting Feb. 1. It will be replaced with a special automatic warning system closed on the global Inmarsat satellite network. This story points to the advantages of the new system.

Kirov governor Vladimir Sergeyenkov Monday stated that his region this year will give up importing poultry. He said that the local poultry farms may considerably increase their output if the government helps with investments.

Lt. Col. Vladimir Shevchenko, deputy chief of the military counterespionage service, was badly wounded last Sunday evening in the entryway to his house in Stavropol, as a result of an attempt upon his life.

The Pension Fund is facing serious personnel changes after its head Vasily Barchuk has tendered his resignation and after the supervising board under the president finishes its checks of the fund's finances. The story discusses the forces behind all these actions.

Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov's letter to the presidential administration and to both houses of parliament with a proposal to sign a kind of "nonaggression pact" by power agencies up to the year 2000 has had the same effect as a bomb exploding, causing a rather hysterical reaction from mass media. Political scientist Vyacheslav Nikonov describes the real factorswhich made Primakov take this step.

An IMF mission headed by Thomas Wolf, Assistant Director of the Second European Board, is expected to arrive in Belarus to consider the question of issuing the republic a special loan. This story looks at its possible terms.

Russian metal exporters have presented the government with a 20-point list of their proposals saying that the existing system of currency-export regulation does not correspond to the current production-commercial relations. The exporters are displeased with the presence of two commercial sessions at the currency exchange. This story reveals the essence of their proposals.

UES plans to resume the process of investing in the energy sector through drawing strategic partners to the holding's subsidiaries. With this aim in view, UES head Anatoly Chubais held negotiations in Davos with the German RWE AG, VIAG AG and Preussen Elektra energy firms on possible sales to them of stock packages of regional Russian energy companies, in which UES is the main owner. This story looks at major results of the negotiations.


This story reports on how authorities Monday responded to a march staged in Moscow by 200 members of Russian National Unity over the weekend. Similar stories appear in Komsomolskaya Pravda and MK.

Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov stated Sunday that the following day he would sign a government memorandum of fundamentals of economic policy that would be immediately sent to IMF Managing Director Michel Camdessus. The document, however, was not signed. Why? The story also looks at several significant problems which the IMF mission and the Russian government have failed to regulate. A similar story appears in MK.

President Boris Yeltsin on Saturday signed a decree on personnel cuts in his administration thus causing four out of six of his advisers to be sacked. This story comments on the document.

Director general of the SV Premier company and soloist in the White Eagle group, Vladimir Zhechkov, has decided to pay to the Federal Tax Police Service $30,000 in tax, while two others in the tax scandal - Sergei Lisovsky and Vladimir Grigoryev - have no plans to do the same. This storylooks at the tax service's efforts to make them pay.

The Moscow Perovsky City Court Monday began to consider a criminal case of swindlers, who in 1994 created a fictitious investment company - The Unified Financial Company - and collected 6 billion rubles. This story details the case.

Eight Armenians were killed in a private sauna in Nizhny Novgorod on Sunday. This story explains how it happened.

The French Societe Generale and Cie Financiere Paribas banks Monday announced their plans for a merger. If it happens, the new bank will be the fourth large bank in the world. The story comments on the plan.

The government commission on credit-monetary policy Monday announced five banks which will service the accounts of the soft crediting fund of the Agro-Industrial Complex. What the banks will gain from this measure is discussed.

The Chelyabinsk Tractor Works, a leading tractor producer in Europe and former pride of Soviet industry, may cease to existin the near future. The auction to sell this bankrupt factory has undergone a fiasco and now the works will be sold in parts.

The Tyumen Oil Company late last week informed Deputy Prime Minister Vladimir Bulgak that the company is prepared in the near future to produce additional materials on a merger with the state National Oil Company. It will be created on the basis of Rosneft, Slavneft and ONAKO. If TOC merges with the National Oil Company, a new state-owned holding will be the second biggest in the volume of oil extraction.

Managers from leading investment funds on Monday stated that as a result of the world financial crisis and low business activity on the world markets, depositors last year withdrew $24.2 billion from the funds. And what is the situation with the Russian stock market? The story offers several points of view from several banks.


In an interview, Maks Sokol, chief of the Tax Collection Department of the Tax Ministry, explains several novelties which have appeared in this year'sincome declarations which the public is to submit this year to tax agencies.

This story describes the unique operation conducted by the Soviet Secret Police to mount bugging devices on Stalin's order in the American Embassy in Moscow in 1933.

On Jan. 14, the government announced its intention to place under its control the prices on the most mafiosi market, the pharmaceutical market. As a result, the prices of the most important medicines should decrease by 25 to 30 percent and the beginning of this reform was planned to start Monday. Did it really start?

Excerpts are given from the diary of traveler Fyodor Konyukhov, who is taking part in an around the world trip in his yacht. He was reported missing in early January but fortunately he reached Oakland last Saturday.

This story describes a unique experiment. The cosmonauts in the Mir space station plan to conduct this experiment in space on Feb. 4 and it involves huge mirrors.


Lt. Vladimir Tkachenko has been sentenced to only three years in jail for divulging state secrets. This story details his crime.

The Moscow government made the decision to gradually remove buses and trolleybuses from the city's central part and replace them with comfortable minibuses. The story looks at the project.

Vice Premier of the Moscow government Vladimir Resin answers questions from MK readers about the city housing program and housing problems.


In an interview First Deputy Prime Minister Yury Maslyukov says he is sure that Moscow journalists subconsciously dislike the presence of a Communist in the government.

All political parties and movements have found themselves involved in the political struggle to win the electorate to their side. Editor-in-chief Vitaly Tretyakov looks at their election claims.

Philosopher Valentina Fedotova, director of the Center of Philosophy Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, looks at three major principles that may underlie the Russian futurestate (the Russia of the 21st century).

Representatives from ten all-Russian professional and creative unions yesterday signed a protocol announcing the creation of another public organization - the Union of Professional and Creative Unions or the Union of Unions. The new organization is sure that Russia's main trouble lies in the crisis of its elite.

The Novosibirsk Low-Voltage Instrument Works in December produced the first batch of cartridges for 7.62 -gauge rifles and machine guns, which are unique in the world. The story describes the novelty of the Siberian producers.

Film critic Antonina Kryukova previews film maker Alla Surikova new film titled "I Want to Go to Jail."

Oleg Bocharov, head of the Moscow City Duma Legality and Security Commission, looks at the role to be played by Luzhkov's Fatherland in Russia's future.


Deputy Prime Minister Valentina Matviyenko stated that by April 1, or April Fools Day, the salary of state budget workers will be raised by 50 percent. Was she kidding?

The story features several military projects, which the Defense Ministry will be able to fund from the 18.4 billion ruble military budget.

Commerzbank Director General Yurgen Frenshkovski stated yesterday that his bank had received a general license from the Central Bank to work on the Russian market.

The story looks at several effective measures taken by the Moscow government to clear the city of shell-form garages.

The Moscow Regional Court yesterday began hearings on the murder of Russian Hockey Federation head Valentin Sych, who was killed in April 1997. The story details that terrible crime.


Russian cosmonauts Gennady Padalko and Sergei Avdeyev working in the Mir orbital station will have to conduct a difficult experiment Thursday resembling a children's game to capture the reflections of the sun. The story reveals the essence of the experiment.

Political observer Otto Latsis comments on numerous debates and discussions that have been caused by Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov's letter to the presidential administration and to both houses of parliament with a proposal to sign a "political peace treaty."

Belarus's democratic forces over the weekend held a congress to defend the republic's sovereignty. The story features the event and the stand of several influential political parties, which spoke against the creation of a single state with Russia.

St. Petersburg will host the World Hockey Championship-2000. Is the city ready to hold this event? And does it need it?


Valentin Vlasov, presidential envoy to Chechnya, criticizes the Federation Council for its calls to impose a state of emergency in Stavropolsky Krai bordering on Chechnya due the latter's constant criminal attacks.

Potential candidates for the upcoming parliamentary elections are seeking their allies among numerous political parties and movements. The story looks at their attempts to find them.

Oligarch Boris Berezovsky last Saturday (Jan.30) through his representative in ORT Sergei Dorenko declared war on Cabinet head Yevgeny Primakov. What blame has Berezovsky put on Primakov? The story offers several guesses.

As a birthday present to Tatarstan's President Mintimer Shaimiyev (he turned 62 on Jan. 20 ) his staff has opened his personal page in the Internet. The story highlights this event.

How does the World Economic Forum in Davos this year differ from the one last year? In a short interview Kakha Bendukidze, director general of Uralskiye Mashinostroitelnyie Zavody, answers this and other questions about Russia and the forum.

U.S. philanthropist George Soros, who has invested about $1billion in Svyazinvest alone, considers his investment in Russia the most unsuccessful of the whole career of his professional activities. The story describes his lost hopes in Russia.

The fight for the seat of State Property Minister is coming to the end. At least seven people are claiming the post. Which of them has the best chance of winning the fight?

Australian television magnate Rupert Murdoch, who owns quite a number of TV companies in the world, is claiming ORT. What are his chances of buying it? What will he and the ORT company gain from this deal if it's a success?

On the threshold of the 2000th anniversary of Christmas, the Russian Orthodox Church is preparing to receive a priceless present from the Primakov government - the vestry of the Trinity-Sergiyev Lavra. The story highlights its riches.

The mention of Philip Kirkorov's name brings a grimace to the face of Russian intellectuals, who love Vysotsky, classical music and foreign rock groups, notes show business critic Dina Kirnarskaya in her story about this show business star.


The major renovation of the metro bridge in Luzhniki began last week. The work is to be completed in 2001. In an interview chief engineer Boris Monov talks about the project and about a new look of the Vorobyovy Gory metro station.

The Moscow Vympel production association has designed a diving suit, which has no equal in the world: it allows divers to surface from a sinking submarine at the depth of 200 meters or a ship without getting the bends. The story features the suit with its wonderful qualities.

In an interview Arkady Volsky, head of the Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, talks about major errors of the previous Cabinet of young reformers. Volsky also speaks about his attitude to Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov and Mayor Yuri Luzhkov.