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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

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


Turkmenistan decided to impose a visa requirement for visitors from Russia and several other CIS countries. The Russian Foreign Ministry is "studying the situation," waiting for Ashgabad's official explanation .

The law envisaging the creation of the High Council on TV to protect morality was supported by the majority of the Federation Council on March 17, but on the night of March 18 the Russian TV Channel aired a compromising videotape showing Prosecutor General Yuri Skuratov with two prostitutes. The story concludes that morality in Russia in not in order.

Alexander Turbanov, head of the Agency for Restructuring Crediting Organizations (ARCO) quit his post of Central Bank deputy head. Viktor Gerashchenko signed his resignation paper on March 16.

Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov may meet with Chechen President Aslan Maskhadov in Moscow either Friday or Sunday.

At its regular session yesterday, the government declared that paying off debts to the Pension Fund and raising pensions are priority issues in the Cabinet's policy. "Four million Russian pensioners are not able to live on their meager pensions of 234 rubles," Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov said with a tragic tone in his voice.

In an interview, NEFTEPROMBANK head Ivan Gubenko says how his bank has managed to survive the financial crisis, focusing on services of its clients.

The story features a new 15-member Central Election Commission, saying that two-thirds of its employees have no experience working with election campaigns.

About 30 regional governors and representatives from political parties and movements making a coalition held a meeting in the Federation Council building yesterday when they set up an organizing committee of the inter-regional election block and approved a draft of their political program.

UES audits have inspected the financial activities of Kuzbassenergo, a UES subsidiary, which has failed to pay 23 million rubles to the monopoly company.

The Krasnoyarsk Coal Company (KCC) Board of Directors is expected to hold a meeting today to decide the fate of the local coal complex.

The Russian education project by American philanthropist George Soros, who has invested $76 million in it, is five years old today. The program has helped many Russian scientists and students survive in this difficult period for Russian science.

The story describes Stalin's secret bunker, which was built in Kuntsevo, 80 kilometers from Stalin's dacha, in early 1941 by a special team of Metrostroi specialists. Stalin spent the first two years of the war in this bunker.


Prosecutor General Yury Skuratov's met yesterday with President Boris Yeltsin, whom Skuratov told about several cases, not mentioned to the Federation Council, of corruption among high-ranking officials.

What kind of reform does Russia need? In an interview, economist Irina Khakamada, head of the private Institute of Entrepreneurship, shares her views on the issue.

In an interview, Alexei Abakumov, TV Vesti program editor-in-chief, who agreed to air a videotape about Prosecutor General Yuri Skuratov on March 18, explains how and why they decided to air the tape.

Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov yesterday met with left-wing leaders Gennady Zyuganov, Nikolai Ruyzhkov and Nikolai Kharitonov, with Yuri Maslyukov joining them 1 1/2 hours later. The story says that it' s a communist plot against the government that made Primakov meet with them.

The State Duma yesterday passed in the first reading an amendment in the federal law concerning major guarantees of the election rights.

In an interview, First Deputy Prime Minister Yury Maslyukov responds to Viktor Chernomyrdin's statement that Maslyukov should be removed from the negotiations with the IMF?

Defense Minister Igor Sergeyev left for India where for four days he will discuss issues pertaining to Russian-Indian military cooperation.

In an interview, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyakhu, who is arriving in Moscow on Sunday, explains how to bring Israeli-Russian relations to a qualitatively higher level.

Interior Minister Sergei Stepashin yesterday appointed a new chief of the Interior Department of the Sverdlovsk Region. Has the previous chief, Valery Krayev, been sacked?

Physical culture teacher Talgat Sugirbekov of Moscow Secondary School No. 733 will spend eight years in jail because he" taught" his pupils to use heroin.

Moscow police officers have arrested Sergei Opanasenko, former Director of the Krasnoyarsk Coal Company, on charges of abusing power.

The Novosibirsk Regional Arbitration Court has introduced three-year outside management at the Novosibirsk Electrode Factory.

The Central Bank head, Viktor Gerashchenko, has sent a letter to Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov with recommendations, which will underlie the future work of the Agency for Restructuring Crediting Organizations (ARCO).

State Duma deputies for several months already have been accusing the Central Bank of concealing profits and using hard currency reserves on the GKO market with the help of its subsidiaries. Central Bank head Viktor Gerashchenko yesterday responded to these accusations for the first time.

Central Bank head Viktor Gerashchenko 's program of restructuring the banking system of Russia. Full text.


The story says who gains from the current scandal around Prosecutor General Yuri Skuratov.

In an interview, highly regarded lawyer Dmitry Shteinberg shares his view on the video tape showing Prosecutor General Yury Skuratov in the company of two prostitutes aired by Russian Channel 2 on March 18.


At the Tuesday session presided over by First Deputy Prime Minister Vadim Gustov, the State Commission on Social and Economic Development of the North Caucasus endorsed a concept of Russia's national policy in the North Caucasus.

The Slovak government decided to reject its $158 million project of buying Russian S-300 PMU-1. The story looks at the history of the project and its initiators, saying who is dictating the Slovak Cabinet.

Several hundred residents yesterday jammed the streets of Yekaterinburg to bid farewell to their colleague Rifat Gafarov, 36, a metro worker, who committed suicide this week because of unbearable hardships caused by unpaid wages.

The Fuel and Energy Ministry and the Federal Energy Commission were designed to defend the interests of the state. In real life, however, this does not take place.

Mayor Yury Luzhkov on March 20 is expected to visit St. Petersburg to make a speech at the first conference of the local branch of his Fatherland movement. 630 delegates from 19 local branches will attend the conference.

In an interview, Yusup Soslambekov, head of the Confederation of the Peoples of the Caucasus, talks about the confederation and the role it should play in resolving ethnic conflicts in the region.

The federal government should keep in mind that the main threat to Russia's national security and territorial integrity comes from the Caucasus, notes South Ossetia's President Akhsarbek Galazov, member of the presidium of the Our Home Presidium Political Council, in his article featuring a tense situation there.

The story highlights two opposing election blocs in St. Petersburg, Yabloko and Yury Boldyrev, which at all elections are vying with each other in an attempt to win as many voters as possible.

How did Lenin treat anti-Semitism? The answer is provided in an article, which appeared in the Parisian newspaper "Our Union" on April 18, 1929.


According to reports from the State Statistics Committee, Russia's foreign trade turnover, including non-organized trade in January 1999, compared with January 1998, decreased 33.6 percent, amounting to 169.8 billion rubles ($7.7 billion).

Small tremors occur in Moscow nearly every day. Seismologist Yevgeny Barkovsky of the Institute of the Physics of the Earth speaks about seismologically unfavorable places in the capital city.


Prosecutor General Yury Skuratov's private life has definitely put Russia onto the brink of political crisis, with President Yeltsin's advisers playing their significant role. Now the president will have to make a humiliating and hard choice, either threaten to make the Federation Council agree on Skuratov's resignation or "give up his people."

The story offers three possible scenarios showing what awaits Russia after the completion of its negotiations with the International Monetary Fund.

The first batch of European Union's food aid to Russia, which is expected to arrive in St. Petersburg in late March or early April, contains 50 tons of Irish beef. In an interview, Owen Brooks, Director of the International Markets Food Council of the Irish Agriculture Ministry, speaks about quality meat designed for food aid to Russia.

In an interview, Yabloko leader Grigory Yavlinsky says that his party opposes the oligarchic system. The whole party bureau acting as the board of directors of a company is unacceptable to Yabloko.

The Moscow regional administration in the next several months intends to begin to sell land plots in theregion. With this aim in view, the Regional Legislative Assembly on Wednesday approved a special draft provision on selling land plots as state property.

Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov on March 10 signed documents endorsing a state program aimed at intensifying a crackdown on crime in 1999-2000, with 3.36 billion rubles to be allocated from the federal budget on its implementation. On March 16 the program went into force.


The UES energy company is creating a Russia-Kazakhstan joint venture working on the Ekibastuz coal deposit. Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov earlier went to Kazakhstan to negotiate with President Nazarbayev on the issue.

Eleven commercial banks this week joined the treaty signed by crediting organizations on their obligations to clients.


Four experts specializing in the small business sector share their viewpoints on the future prospects of small business after the financial crisis.

In an interview, Finance Minister Mikhail Zadornov speaks about the country's inability to keep a large army of federal bureaucrats. Zadornov also talks about Russia's foreign debts and about the progress reached at the Russia-IMF negotiations.

In an interview, highly regarded Soviet filmmaker Stanislav Rostotsky speaks about his negative impressions of today's films, which, as he says, are too expensive and less creative.

In an interview, Prof. Boris Leonov, laboratory head at the obstetrics center of the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, speaks about the latest achievements in child birth with the help of test tubes.


A scandal broke out around LogoVAZ, the brainchild of tycoon Boris Berezovsky, on Wednesday when his bodyguards severely beat a policeman near the company's office building on Novokuznetskaya Ulitsa.

The story reports on how the Anti-Monopoly Ministry has managed to remove many vulgar advertising boards from Moscow streets.

The story offers several interesting episodes from the life of oligarch Boris Berezovsky before his managed to start his impressive career.