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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

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


Prime Minister Sergei Stepashin has lost his battle in getting the gas tax law passed by the State Duma Thursday. The story comments on the issue. (also covered in Kommersant, Vremya MN)

The Kosovo Liberation Army command has threatened to launch military action against the Russian peacekeepers if Russia tries to impose a division of the province. This was stated by a KLA representative in London. The story comments on his statement.

According to information from the Agriculture Ministry, the spring sowing of cereals has been completed. The prognosis for the future harvest is optimistic.

The State Duma yesterday passed (in the first reading) the draft law concerning the legal status of foreigners in Russia. The story notes that in the near future already this law may seriously complicate the entry of foreigners into this country. The story comments on the document.

Moscow police officers have arrested Natalya Petrova, manager of the Raduga Bank on charges of abusing power. The story details the charges.

The government has launched measures aimed at reorganizing the sphere of national arms exports. The story reveals their essence.

At the government session Thursday Fuel and Energy Minister Viktor Kalyuzhny came up with an initiative to cancel all additional quotas on oil exports starting the third quarter of this year. Moreover, at his meeting with oilmen this week, the minister shared his idea to create a government reserve fund of 6 million tons of oil. The story comments on his initiatives.

Kazakhstan's government delegation is expected to visit Russia on June 29 when it may accuse the Russian side of anti-dumping trade. The story examines Kazakhstan's serious claims.

The G-8 summit will start its work in Cologne on Friday. President Boris Yeltsin will arrive in Germany Sunday to meet with U.S. President Bill Clinton to decide the fate of Russian peacekeepersin Kosovo. The story examines the summit's agenda. (also covered in Kommersant)

In an interview Novgorod governor Mikhail Prusak says that he supports amendments of the Constitution. He says why they are expedient.

A treaty on issuing a $10 million credit to the TV 6 Moskva company is expected to be signed in a couple of days. In an interview the company's Director General Alexander Ponomaryov speaks about the Sagalayev-Berezovsky deal and about the current situation in the company.

Saratov governor Dmitry Ayatskov, who is in Georgia now, intends to propose to Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze the transformation of the CIS into a confederation.


In an interview division commander Yevgeny Savilov says that a Russian peacekeeping contingent in Kosovo will be formed on the basis of the 106th paratrooper division. Savilov also talks about the major conditions of the servicemen's contracts.

The scandal surrounding tainted Coca-Cola is expanding with the number of victims increasing. The story mentions several countries, which have limited the sales and import of Belgian Coca-Cola and other drinks of the company.

Interior Minister Vladimir Rushailo personally heads the struggle to combat crimes and violations in the oil sector. At the government session Thursday he made a special report on results of this struggle. The story gives several facts from the report.

A small group of American servicemen has arrived in Kazakhstan to take part in a joint military-medical exercise "Balance-Koyak". And before its end, another military joint exercise "Zhardem" will begin in the Almaty region on June 28. The story examines their program.

Ukraine has refused to take part in the NATO military exercise "Cooperative-Partner" in the Black Sea. The story notes that Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma fears to lose votes.

Mayor Yury Luzhkov has signed a directive, according to which 100 percent of stock of the Central Fuel Company belonging to City Hall is being transferred to the MOC as a payment for the Moscow government's share in the charter capital of the recently created Moscow Oil Company (MOC ). Only 25 percent of MOC stock will now belong to City Hall. As a result, Moscow authorities will lose control over the company. The story comments on the mayor's document.

The restoration of the banking system will result in a massive closure of banks - such a conclusion may be made after reading a draft law concerning the restructuring of credit organizations that was submitted to the State Duma Thursday. The story examines several provisions of the document.

Norilsk Nickel, a leading producer of non-ferrous metals in the world, intends to make new products - ferro-chromium and refractory materials. The story describes the project.

The 7th International Festival "White Nights Stars" will open Friday in St. Petersburg. The story looks at its program.


Three political analysts share their viewpoints on the presidential elections-2000, including the question as to whether Boris Yeltsin may run for the presidency for the third time.

The story highlights several Russian politicians who may enter the domestic political book of records.

After three long months of treatment with the use of the anti-AIDS medication armenikum, the first Russian couple has been cured. The story describes the happy end.

The Internal Ministry Research Center has its own special department to crack down on hypnosis terrorism. In an interview its senior research associate Leonid Grimak reports on how criminal dealers use the force of suggestion for their personal gains.


The story comments on First Deputy Prime Minister Nikolai Aksyonenko's instruction that all industrial monopolies freeze prices of their products, focusing on possible serious consequences of this measure.

Priest of the Russian Orthodox Church Vyacheslav Polosin, adviser to the State Duma public and religious organizations committee, has declared himself a Moslem. In an interview he explains his behavior.

Moscow police have detained 10 prostitutes in a brothel on Osenny Bulvar very close to President Boris Yeltsin's apartment block. The story describes the place.

A terrible "collective" suicide happened on Ulitsa Generala Rychagova on Wednesday evening when a married couple who were pensioners hanged themselves in their apartment. The story describes the tragedy.

According to reports from the Moscow Sanitary Inspectorate, the number of dysentery patients has considerably increased over the first five months of this year. Specialists say that it's because of tainted food products. The story gives figures to illustrate the case.

The story describes a disturbing situation concerning seven construction projects of new metro lines and stations , which have been suspended because of lack of funds. The trouble is that foundation ditches have been dug out in many places, which could collapse any moment. Facts and figures illustrate the urgent problem, which must be resolved without delay.

The Congress of Russian Communes with Dmitry Rogozin as its leader suspended its membership in the Otechestvo movement Thursday. The story says why. (also covered in Kommersant, Vremya MN)


The fate of Russian peacekeepers in Kosovo is problem No. 1 for President Boris Yeltsin, who on Sunday will fly to Cologne to attend the final session of the G-8 summit and to meet with U.S. President Bill Clinton. Moreover, Western leaders would like to see for themselves the real state of Yeltsin's health. (also covered in Segodnya)

Only 200 Russian paratroopers stationed in Pristina can defend the local Serbs from Albanians. An eyewitness account describes the current situation in Kosovo.

In an interview General Georgy Shpak, commander of the Airborne Landing Troops, speaks about the project of sending a peacekeeping contingent to Kosovo, for which he is personally responsible.

The story reveals major provisions of the concept of reforming the All-Russian Exhibition Center (former VDNKh), which was endorsed by its board of directors.

Preparations for a summit meeting between President Boris Yeltsin and Chechnya's President Aslan Maskhadov are in full swing. Federal authorities intend to set their clear-cut stand in all spheres of bilateral cooperation. The story examines several major points.

The All-Russian Ecological party Kedr decided to act independently in the parliamentary elections. This was stated by its leader Anatoly Panfilov at the recent party congress. Panfilov commented on the decision.

The election program of the all-Russian public and political movement "For Civil Dignity" with State Duma deputy Ella Pamfilova as its leader. Abridged.

In an interview, Gennady Udovenko, leader of the Ukrainian Rukh Party, who is running for president, speaks about the current election campaign in the republic and about the alignment of political forces there.

In an interview Mikhail Vanin, head of the State Customs Committee, answers the following questions - What forces do you represent? Have you read scandalous materials about you in Novaya Gazeta? What role does your agency play in building the budget? What are the prospects of shuttle traders' activities - what awaits them in the future?


The meat crisis has hit Primorye, which has considerably cut its meat imports from the Benelux countries and China. The story explains main reasons.

According to the Foreign Ministry, 12 Russian pilots disappeared in Angola alone last year. President Boris Yeltsin on Thursday signed a decree on creating a special commission responsible for their return home. The story describes the team and mission of the disappeared pilots.

Kinodrom is the name of the first Russian drive-in movie theater, which opened Thursday in Krylatskoye. Driverscan watch films there without leaving their autos.

According to results of the latest VTSIOM opinion poll, 49 percent of Muscovites believe that the participation of Russian troops in the peacekeeping mission in Kosovo will do Russiaonly harm. Other figures on the developments in Yugoslavia. (also covered in Segodnya)

In an interview Right Cause leader Boris Nemtsov, who met with Prime Minister Sergei Stepashin Thursday, speaks about the problems he discussed with the Cabinet head.

Shareholders from the All-Russian Oil Refining Research Institute open joint-stock company are expected to conduct a meeting Friday. The story examines three factors which attach special significance to this ordinary event.


In an interview political scientist Liliya Shevtsova, who has had her book " The Russia of Yeltsin: Myths and Reality" published recently (in English) explains why President Boris Yeltsin should not have any successor, saying that all talk about it is a political game.

Several figures in culture and show business, including Alla Pugachyova, share their views on marriages of couples of widely differing ages. In an interview psychiatrist Yelena Shepeleva says that she considers such marriages a public norm.


The holiday season may be negatively affected by a protest act scheduled for Saturday by 500 Vnukovo Airlines air hosts and hostesses , who intend to declare an indefinite strike. They have not been paid for four months. The story features their demands.

The Japanese government has decided to allocate Russia about $200 million to eliminate outdated Soviet-era nuclear weapons. A short commentary of the decision.

In an interview Samara governor Konstantin Titov, a coordinator of the Voice of Russia public and political bloc, speaks about its allies, saying that he will not support former Prime Minister Sergei Kiriyenko's claim to the post of Moscow mayor.

Political analyst Leonid Radzikhovsky explains why President Boris Yeltsin's departure from the post would mean a catastrophe for his team and for the KPRF.

SBS-AGRO's creditors had to confess (for the first time in Russia's practice) that their negotiations with the bank on paying off debts have reached a deadlock. The committee that was created with the aim of holding negotiations on restructuring SBS-AGRO's foreign debts has resigned. The story describes the bank's complicated relations with its creditors.

The Japanese Fujitsu company and the German Siemens firm intend to pool their efforts to produce computers and programs in Europe. The story features the project.


Mezhregiongaz , Gazprom's marketing company, has signed an agreement on buying 30 percent of stock of the Interkhimprom financial and industrial group. The story comments on the deal.