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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

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


The Moscow Prosecutor's Office instituted criminal proceedings Friday against Prosecutor General Yury Skuratov on charges of abusing power. The story details the case and also comments on the presidential decree releasing Skuratov from his high post. The story concludes that the Kremlin itself turned the Prosecutor General into a martyr for the truth and was not able to divest itself of suspicion of corruption. Mayor Yury Luzhkov and Krasnoyarsk Governor Alexander Lebed shares their opinions on Skuratov's forced resignation.

The CIS single economic zone is unable to yield CIS member states real profits.

The Moscow Regional Administration has decided to lease 200,000 hectares in Uganda to grow quality cotton.

The State Duma late last week adopted an appeal to the president and the government censuring the visit to the Balkans by the Just Cause leaders - Yegor Gaidar, Boris Nemtsov and Boris Fyodorov.

Yugoslavia's authorities announced that three Americans, who were taken prisoner at the Macedonian border last week, would face military tribunal. If Belgrade puts the decision into effect, it would be an unforgivable mistake.

The State Duma created a group to work out amendments to Chapter 22 of the regulations of the lower house of parliament. The amendments will mainly concern the procedure of voting to impeach the president.

The government has approved the text of its agreement with Tatarstan's Cabinet of Ministers on joint participation in reforming KamAZ.

Central Bank head Viktor Gerashchenko stated that the commercial banks buying currencies other than U.S. dollars for import contracts should first purchase U.S. dollars at a special session in the Moscow Inter-Bank Currency Exchange and then convert them on the international or other markets.

The story comments on results of the opinion poll conducted by the Obshchestvennoye Mneniye Fund in late March to see what Russians think of the IMF and its promised credits.

The story warns that the Communist Party may come to power. The present-day situation is such that the Yugoslav crisis has given them extensive possibilities of advertising themselves as the true defenders of Russia's national interests.

St. Petersburg Mayor Vladimir Yakovlev stated that three American professors, who were sacked last week in protest of NATO airstrikes against Yugoslavia, will be restored to their posts.

The current election campaign in the Kemerovo region for the upcoming elections to the regional parliament scheduled for April 18 has caused many scandals.

The Moscow City Duma has decided to consider a special draft law to protect children from audio and video negative information.

The story reports on how museum workers destroy children's desire to go to museums, naming three museums which all kids, ages 6-16, should visit.


The State Duma has actually approved the beginning of new war in Chechnya. The lower house of parliament has backed Interior Minister Sergei Stepashin's proposal to use force against the republic made on March 7 immediately after Major General Gennady Shpigun was taken prisoner.

Moscow prosecutors Friday conducted a search in the office of the SB Konus security firm and its section servicing the National Reserve Bank because of a criminal case on illegal interference in a citizens' private life.

The CIS Moscow summit on Friday signed a protocol on amendments to the 1994 Agreement on the free trade zone, which each state should adapt to their local legislation.

At the 55th session of the UN Human Rights Commission last week, Belarus, for the first time, was listed as a country violating human rights.

The Prosecutor General's Office has completed the investigation of the Golden Ada criminal case. Four former high-level officials were accused of embezzling diamonds and gold.

World Bank head James Wulfenson is expected to arrive in Moscow in mid-April to negotiate with Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov. The results will largely determine the fate of the bank's future credits to Russia and the IMF's attitude to the joint statement on economic policy in 1999 made by the government and the Central Bank. The story reports on how First Deputy Prime Minister Yury Maslyukov and Michael Carter, Director for Russia of the World Bank for Reconstruction and Development Friday tried to resolve Friday the last differences on the draft agreement on the Bank's SAL-3 structural credit.

The Central Bank's personnel department deputy head Natalya Zaznobina stated that the Bank intends to cut its staff by one-third.

A three-month long public opinion poll conducted in Britain has shown that 60 percent of the British population oppose the idea of introducing the euro currency into circulation by the year 2002. The results of the poll surprised the British government.

The State Customs Committee has increased the number of specialized customs checkpoints to control the export and import of precious stones and metals. Besides Moscow, another four regional customs boards will deal with registering such commodities.

The Novosibirsk regional administration has found a way out of the crisis without hoping for federal budgetary donations. It has created a local information analytical system NITRO, which is an analogue of the accounting system that functioned in the Soviet economy.

The story describes six areas outside Moscow contaminated with nuclear waste. This information for the first time has been provided in the Program of Radioactive Safety of the Moscow Region, which was recently endorsed by the Moscow Regional Duma.


Sergei Chernov, vice-president of the Basketball Federation of Russia, was hospitalized Friday morning when two bandits savagely beat him in the entryway of his apartment blockin Lefortovo.

A group of teenagers on March 27 threw stones and bottles with green medical liquid at a small American restaurant in Moscow, "Uncle Sam." Fortunately, no one was hurt. Restaurant manager Yelena Ugarova tells how it happened.

The story features a unique private bomb shelter built by Vasily Bozhenko in his village Ignatyevsky in Adygeya. Civil defense specialists say that by all characteristics, it's the best in the whole of Russia.

In an exclusive interview, ex-Deputy Prime Minister Boris Nemtsov tells of the recent peace-making mission to Yugoslavia and Italy of the Just Cause (Pravoye Delo) election bloc. He tells how he, Yegor Gaidar and Boris Fyodorov met with Pope John Paul II.

In an interview, illustrious filmmaker Nikita Mikhalkov speaks about patriotism Russian style and about Russian national ideas, the way he understands it.

The story describes the traditional Russian great holiday, Orthodox Easter, and what dishes should be served on this holiday.

Mayor Yury Luzhkov asked the vice-premier of the city government, Sergei Yastrzhembsky, to control the TV Tsentr Channel.


The story features the current visit to Yugoslavia by a State Duma delegation headed by Sergei Baburin, the vice-speaker, and its meeting with President Slobodan Milosovic.

According to hydrologists' forecast, the water level in the Moscow River may considerably increase in the middle of this week with possibly disastrous consequences.

The Main Military Prosecutor's Office on March 31 issued its final ruling concerning the criminal case of Soviet Marshal Lavrenty Beria, Interior Minister of the USSR, who was

found guilty of all grave crimes he was accused of.

Chief conductor of the presidential orchestra, Pavel Ovsyannikov, tells of the orchestra's 60-year history and major duties.

This year, Krasnaya Gorka, traditionally one of the most popular wedding days in Russia, falls on April 18.

The most scandalous terrorist act in the past several years was committed in Moscow yesterday night when a powerful blast shook the reception office building of the Federal Security Service on Kuznetsky Most Ulitsa.

A savage murder that was committed by a group of teenagers in Chekhov, Moscow region, in February shocked the city.

Two soldiers from the Moscow Interior army unit stationed on Dorozhnaya Ulitsa killed their comrade on Saturday in order to escape from the detention cell.

The story describes an Easter holiday program sponsored by the Church of Christ the Saviour on April 11.

Gangsters killed Avtotrans director Baiseitov and his two friends Friday evening in Lobna, Moscow region.

Editor-in-chief, Pavel Gusev, yesterday turned 50. In his congratulatory telegram, Mayor Yury Luzhkov said Gusev is the only person in Russia who has been able to create a truly independent paper, which is the mayor's favorite daily. The paper has harshly criticized the Moscow government and the mayor personally.

In an interview, Ernest Bakirov, adviser to the Moscow mayor, talks about his work with Yury Luzhkov, who on February 22 signed a decree to create the Moscow OIl Company and appointed Bakirov its head.


In an interview, Ukraine's Foreign Minister Boris Tarasyuk talks about the Ukraine-Russia Treaty that has taken effect, about the problems that should be resolved to make the Commonwealth of Independent States effective and about Kiev's initiatives aimed at resolving the Kosovo problem.

A festive Golden Mask award ceremony for the national theatrical prize will take place in the Bolshoi Theater on March 5.

Anatoly Kucherena, Director of the Argument Lawyers' Agency, comments on Prosecutor General Yury Skuratov's courageous decision to continue to struggle for his honor and destiny. Even if the videotape is authentic, the prosecutor general obviously has not done anything illegal.

Russia has banned ethyl spirit imports up to January 1, 2002. This measure falls under the federal Law concerning a temporary ban of ethyl spirit import signed by President Yeltsin on March 31.

The government will have to restore (starting April 24 ) a customs duty equalling 2.5 euro per ton on Russian oil, according to a high-level official from the Fuel and Energy Ministry.

In his article, Sergei Baburin, a co-chairman of the Provisional Commission of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Belarus-Russia Union, focuses on factors which should boost the process of Belarus-Russia integration.

Literary critic Maria Remizova reviews Nobel Prize writer Alexander Solzhenitsyn's story titled "Zhelyabugskiye Vyselki" and novel "Allig Shvenkitten" both published in the Novy Mir March edition.

A new children's theater, the "Magic Lamp," opened last week on Ulitsa Sretenka.

U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright has the image of an "iron lady."


A new very dangerous virus, which so far cannot be stopped has emerged in the Internet electronic mail, warns the company IBM on the Itar-Tass main technical board.

The Russian Kurortproekt firm has won the tender for creating a major renovation project for the Bolshoi Theater building in Moscow. The decision was made Friday at the session ofthe State Tendor Commission on restructuring the Bolshoi Theater.

A process to form a Chechen government in exile has started in Moscow, states the resolution of the supreme council of the public and political movement, "For the National Revival of the Chechen People and the Chechen Republic. The alternative government is headed by the economist Adam Deniyev, 39, who has for several years been living in Moscow.

Provides a compilation by the Moscow Prosecutor's Office on the basis of reports by operation secret services, which had watched Prosecutor General Yury Skuratov's private life, including his visits to his"beloved women".

In an interview, Krasnoyarsk Aluminum Zavod (KrAZ) Board of Directors head Anatoly Bykov, deputy of the local Legislative Assembly, talks about himself, about aluminum business and problems facing Krasnoyarsk authorities.

Film critic Viktor Matizen reviews filmmaker Denis Yevstigneyev's new film "Mother," starring the great Russian actress Nona Mordyukova. The first showing of the film took place in the Concert Hall "Rossiya" late last week.

SEGODNYA (3,5/4/99)

The federal Russian and Chechen law-enforcement agencies Friday reached an agreement on measures to release Interior Ministry major General Gennady Shpigun from Chechen captivity.

Swiss Attorney General Carla del Ponte telephoned Prosecutor General Yury Skuratov on Friday to say that she supports him in his complicated situation. At the same time, del Ponte said that she was surprised at the current developments surrounding the prosecutor general.

In an interview, the highly-regarded American political scientist Dmitry Simes talks about the most serious crisis in the past several years in Russia's relationships with the United States, which has been caused by NATO's aggression against Yugoslavia. He answers the following questions: Has Washington foreseen possible consequences of the NATO military actions? Has the American administration taken into consideration an inevitable growth in anti-American sentiments in Russian society?

It took the staff of the First Deputy Prime Minister Yury Maslyukov about five months to merge the aviation sector and the Russian Space Agency. But the merger may be frustrated after Maslyukov's officials sent a note to the government demanding too many conditions for the new department to function normally.

Tula Governor Vasily Starodubtsev may face a court trial on charges of evading taxes. In order to hear his explanations in court, the Federal Tax Police Service intends to appeal to the Federation Council with a request to deprive the Tula governor of his deputy immunity.

Soldier Alexander Ryabkin, who, while serving in the troops of the Foreign Intelligence Service, received a high dose of radiation and as a result a terrible blood disease - leucaemia. The authorities remain indifferent to his fate.

Weather specialists say that the water level in the Oka and Nara this spring may rise by 11 meters in the area of Serpukhov, which stands on the two rivers. As a result, even three-story buildings may be under water. The story also looks at the situation on the Moskva River.

The story describes the makes of autos, which were in great demand on the domestic auto market last year and in February and March of this year.

NOVAYA GAZETA (5/4-11/4/99)

The political analyst Andrei Piontkovsky shares his opinion about the Kosovo problem, trying to answer the question - Does Russia really need Milosovic's victory?

Prosecutor General Yury Skuratov let Nair Khapsikorov, head of the economic affairs department of the Prosecutor General's Office, into his confidence. Now, Khapsikorov has started to blackmail Yury Skuratov.

In an interview, Yury Boldyrev, deputy head of the Auditing Chamber, speaks about numerous cases of corruption in the Central Bank. He gives concrete facts and figures to illustrate the point.


The writer Nikolai Gogol would have turned 190 on April 1. Disputes have been going on for 150 years over which Slavic people - Russians or Ukrainians - Gogol belongs to.

The thick literary journal "Druzhba Narodov" (People's Friendship) marked its 60th anniversary in March. Its Editor in Chief Alexander Ebanoidze talks about how the journal originated and about how the journal tries to keep Pushkin's traditions intact.

Several documents published here concern cooperation among the Commonwealth of Independent States member-states in different spheres.