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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

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


When speaking at the latest session of the Economic Club in Chicago last week, Britain's Prime Minister, Tony Blair stated that the West should not indifferently observe Russia trying to keep itself from the brink of an economic abyss. Britain at the upcoming G-7 summit scheduled for June in Cologne intends to propose concrete measures aimed at leading Russia's economy out of the crisis. The story comments on Blair's statement.

As a result of his 8-hour negotiations with Yugoslavia's President Slobodan Milosevic last week, Kremlin special envoy Viktor Chernomyrdin brought another "peace plan" to Moscow, which is a list of good intentions, indistinct promises and conditions known to be unacceptable to NATO. The story focuses on several unconvincing points in Chernomyrdin's "peace plan".

A new agency - the Department of Political Planning - is being created in the structure of the presidential administration. The story focuses on its functions.

The story highlights a new stage in NATO's military operations against Yugoslavia, which was ushered in last week by the airstrikes that destroyed the Belgrade TV Center. The story stresses that the Western allies for the first time since the beginning of the war deliberately allowed the killing of civilians.

Democrat Yegor Gaidar, who spoke at the founding conference of the St. Petersburg branch of the Right Cause election bloc over the weekend stated that today the pro-Communist majority in the State Duma and the government are like-minded partners in their attempt to turn Russia back to its totalitarian past. A short commentary.

Political analyst Andrei Kolesnikov reports on how election platforms and programs of numerous political movements and parties taking part in the election campaign are written by the same people using similar formulas and ignoring the vital interests of the country.

The Main Military Prosecutor's Office on April 23 released General Yury Bagrayev from investigating the criminal case of Prosecutor General Yury Skuratov on charges that he abused his power.

Defense Minister Igor Sergeyev's visit to Minsk late last week showed that Moscow is active in seeking military allies rather than partners among its supporting countries. In its new military doctrine Moscow allots to Minsk a special role - of an anti-NATO outpost on the CIS western borders. The story comments on the results of the minister's visit and negotiations in Minsk.

The story is an analysis of Russian economic results in the first quarter of the year, focusing on several figures issued by the State Statistics Committee.

Yury Savelyev, Rector of the Baltiisky State Technical University (the former Ustinov Military Mechanical Institute) in St. Petersburg has signed an order instituting special scholarships named after Slobodan Milosevic. The story reports on how local teachers responded to this act.

Tax Minister Georgy Boos is doing everything he can to establish control over the banking system. The story highlights a meeting late last week with the heads of 35 leading Russianbanks that learned what was awaiting them in the near future. The story comments on the results of the meeting.

Moscow police officers on April 21 and 22 detained four Chechens, who are suspected of kidnappings, extortion and swindling. The story details their crimes.

The story gives a terrible figure of 25,483 people, who have been missing in Russia since January. The story says that their number is expected to grow.

The article looks at Russian biologists' efforts and successful results in developing a medicine against drug addiction.


The State Duma on Friday approved amendments to the law concerning currency regulation and currency control. The legislators supported the government initiative to limit the amount of currency that can be taken abroad ( not more than $5,000 ). The story comments on the negative consequences of this measure.

The story comments on what can be expected from First Deputy Prime Minister Yury Maslyukov's current visit Washington. He arrived there yesterday.

The story describes results of special checks, conducted by a group of law-enforcers headed by First Deputy Interior Minister Vladimir Kolesnikov to seek corruption cases among state officials and businessmen in the Krasnoyarsk region. The story also notes that President Yeltsin after reading his report ordered the federal power structures to take urgent measures to consolidate the leadership of the region's law-enforcing bodies.

The Central Bank has prepared a document allowing depositors who have won court cases against banks that have frozen their accounts to receive their money back through the Central Bank's special cash centers. Such practice existed before, but early this year it was abolished. The story comments on the Central Bank' document.

Leading banker Alexander Lebedev, member of the Our Home Is Russia Political Council, shares his views on how to lead Russia out of the crisis, focusing on the need to continue liberal reforms, to cleanse them from distortions and, above all, to decrease the state's interference in the economy.

In an interview Deputy Agriculture Minister Alexei Gordeyev speaks about the performance of the special fund servicing the agro-industrial complex this year. He focuses on the differences of its work today compared with last year.

The St. Petersburg Lank company has bought the Valdai Optical-Mechanical factory "Yupiter", which makes object-glasses for Zenit photo cameras. The story describes the company and its production plans.

The Moscow City Court has sentenced pedophile Nikolai Konstantinov to 15 years in jail. For nearly 20 years he committed numerous acts of rape of underage children. The story details his terrible crimes.

The First International Festival "Fashion and Style in Photography" sponsored by the Moscow Photo House and the Moscow City Hall opened in the city on Friday. The story looks at its participants.

Moscow restaurants are doing their best to attract as many clients as possible. With this aim in sight, they sometimes take absurd measures, for instance, free vodka in a new "Vodka-Bar" in Hotel Marriott.


Vandals last week destroyed the world's first and only statue to poet Osip Mandelstam in Vladivostok.

World Peace Committee member Alexandra Ochirova, head of the Orphans Center, was the first woman to receive the Gold Order of Konstantin the Great. The story features the latter's origin and Ochirova's great merits.

In an interview Sweden's Prime Minister Goran Persson, who is expected to arrive in Moscow today, says that the initiative in resolving the Balkan conflict should pass to international organizations, the UN above all.

In an interview Federation Council speaker Yegor Stroyev reveals his viewpoint on the scandalous case of Prosecutor General Yury Skuratov.

The story reports on how, according to a government order released November 25, 1994, Rosvooruzheniye and the State Defense Industry Committee, sold the S-300B nuclear missile system to Americans.

Yard cleaner Nadya Yefremova was shocked on April 20 when early in the morning she found an infant alive in the refuse chute of a 12-storey apartment block on Ulitsa Nikolai Khimushin in Metrogorodok, a Moscow suburb. The baby, who is alive and staying in a hospital, was thrown from the top floor by his mother.

The sixth Congress of the all-Russian public and political movement "Our Home is Russia", which took place in Moscow on Saturday, endorsed a new program. The story focuses on its major provisions.

A new public museum in honor of Chernobyl victims opened in Moscow last week on Ulitsa Tyoply Stan. The story describes its exhibits, which feature the Chernobyl tragedy that happened 13 years ago.

Over the past 10 years the number of sterilized women has doubled in Russia and the number of such men has increased ten times. Doctor Alexei Borovikov comments.

The job of Muscovites Vitaly Chelnokov and Andrei Nelyubin is to mount and service mobile plastic public toilets , which arrived in the city from abroad in 1997. The story highlights their business.

More than 1,500 infants were found to be syphilis-infected in Moscow last year alone.


St. Petersburg engineers from the Academician Krylov research center presented their project of building underground nuclear heating stations. They suggest using ship-building technologies and nuclear reactors from ships. The story looks at their project.

On the threshold of the spring session of the IMF and World Bank Boards of Directors IMFManaging Director Michel Camdessus and his First Deputy Stanley Fischer described a general strategy of world financial organizations' interactions with individual markets and regions, including Russia. The story focuses on pessimistic prognoses IMF experts made concerning Russia's economic development in the next two years.


The investigation department of the Belarussian Interior Ministry has received the status of an independent agency with the right of conducting its own business. The story comments on the structural changes in the ministry and notes that no one expected such a wide-scale commercialization.

A meeting between the Russian and Belarussian presidents is scheduled for April 28 in Moscow. Boris Yeltsin and Alexander Lukashenko are expected to discuss issues pertaining to the Russia-Belarus union and also the current situation in the Balkans.

Before the 13th anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster, Belarussian police raided 45 villages in three districts of the Gomel region located in the disaster zone. The aim of the police operation was to catch locals visiting the radiation zone intending to loot. The results of the raid shocked the law enforcers.

The story comments on the conservative program endorsed by the 6th Congress of the Our Home is Russia movement on Saturday.

Today on the anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster, a modification, termed "Chernobylskaya," of the computer virus named "Chikh" will make itself felt throughout the world.

The Italian battleship "Julio Chezare" later renamed "Novorossiisk", which the USSR seized as a trophy in 1949, was a powerful ship in the Soviet navy. In 1955, an underwater blast in its bow destroyed "Novorossiisk", which sank with 600 people on board. Those events, which might be a reason behind an acute conflict between NATO and the USSR havecontinued to be a mystery up to now. Will NATO explain it at last?

The All-Russian Conference of construction workers held late last week focused on boosting the mortgage crediting system in Moscow. The story explains why the city needs the system so much.

In an interview Grigory Roitberg, head of the Meditsina joint-stock company, talks about problems of private medical services and family doctors.


The Moscow City Migration Service together with police officers last week made several raids on construction sites to see how many foreigners work illegally and under what conditions they live in the city. What migration officials saw in Michurinsky Prospekt shocked them. The story describes builders from Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova and Azerbaijan working like real slaves.

The Moscow veterinary inspectorate in the first quarter of this year alone discovered 225 kg of radioactive cranberries at agricultural markets, having arrived mainly from Ukraine and Belarus.

Specialists from the Institute of Medical and Biological Problems decided to use a video camera to observe all possible nuances of cosmonauts' behavior in space. Scientists intend to test their new method during an on-ground experiment imitating the conditions of a future 8-month space flight of an international crew composed of Russian, Canadian, Japanese, German, American and European Space Agency volunteers.

Moscow regional authorities have been accused of squandering money that was designated for the Federal Ecological Fund.

In an interview after he returned from Belgrade, ex-prime minister Viktor Chernomyrdin speaks about his view of the Balkan conflict, on the government and its performance, on President Yeltsin's team and on the current political situation in Russia.

The story highlights a congress of Luzhkov's Fatherland, which took place on Saturday in Yaroslavl, focusing on its agenda and tasks.

The story features difficult fates of several Russian young girls, who, in the hopes of a better life married foreigners and left home to live abroad.

NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana tries to explain why the Alliance is taking part in the Balkan conflict.

April 26 marks the World Day of Twin Cities. In a short interview Vadim Danilin, chief of the Public Relations Department of the Moscow government, says how this day is being celebrated.

The Moscow City Duma late last week passed (in the third reading) a bill on guidelines for the city government's housing policy. In an interview, deputy Galina Khovanskaya, editor of the bill, reveals the essence of its major provisions.

At the session of the "North Caucasus" territorial association in Vladikavkaz over the weekend, Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov used Aesopian language to express his response to the Kremlin's mudslinging against him over the past week. The story gives details about his visit.

Tax Minister Georgy Boos late last week submitted his income declaration. The story gives details about his earnings last year.

Moscow authorities have decided to set forth stricter demands for the quality of drinking water in the city, since the existing sanitary norms have become outdated. The story presents Gosstandart's new specifications.

38 seventh graders from Moscow School 927 in Vostryakovsky Proezd were hospitalized over the last week. Doctors are trying to explain the source of the illness. The story details the case.

Oleg Tkachuk, head of the Vympel spetsnaz veterans' association, was shot dead on Saturday evening in Balashikha (Moscow region). The story describes how it happened.

Today marks the 13th anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster, which killed thousands and left many others injured. The story reminisces about that tragedy, noting that hundreds of locals have been struggling to receive benefits that were allocated to Chernobyl victims.


In an interview (on the eve of the congress on April 24) Our Home leader Viktor Chernomyrdin speaks about new tasks facing his movement before the upcoming parliamentary election scheduled for December.

A newspaper ad says - We would like to buy your cockroaches - Oh, My God! Why would they need these pests? The story details the mystery.

In an interview Rostov-on-Don Mayor Mikhail Chernyshov speaks about new social programs carried out by the city administration.


The story explains why the administration in Orekhovo-Zuyevo (Moscow region) has been trying over the past several months to shut down the Internet connection, which appeared in this city in 1997 thanks to local enthusiasts' efforts.

The Constitutional Court has ruled that no court considering a criminal case can put it aside for an additional investigation at its own initiative. The story views this court decision as a positive measure against police arbitrary rule.

According to official statistical data, there are about 3.5 million trading enterprises in Russia. Therefore, it's no easy task to control the quality of products they offer. As an example, the story cites that 22,000 Russians died last year because of consuming fake vodka. The story features the State Trading Inspectorate's efforts to control product quality.

The story reports on how Russia, due to activities of three Atomic Energy Ministers - Vitaly Konovalov, Viktor Mikhailov and Yevgeny Adamov, have lost hundreds of millions of dollars in losses over the past several years.

The story gives facts illustrating the police's unchecked power in Moscow. The story calls on the public to use all possible means to curb them.

The story highlights a successful enterprise - a fine-cloth factory in the Sverdlovsky settlement (Moscow region), whose products are in great demand both at home and abroad. Its director Boris Ryzhkov reveals the secrets of his factory's success.


The resolution concerning putting into effect the presidential program "State Housing Certificates". Full text and a commentary on the document's major provisions.

In an interview General Makhmut Gareyev, head of the Academy of Military Sciences, focuses on a significant task of raising the armed forces' combat efficiency in the context of the current NATO's military actions against Yugoslavia.