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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

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


The story comments on a scandalous situation that has emerged as a result of passing a resolution May 26 on declaring criminals' amnesty on the occasion of the 55th Victory Anniversary. Also covered in Vremya Novostei.

A U.S. administration spokesman confirmed Thursday that President Bill Clinton will make a decision on developing a national missile defense system in the United States this fall. The story comments on the statement, explaining why it was made.

The scandal linked to the lawsuit by the Moscow Prosecutor's Office on declaring the Norilsk Nickel privatization illegal cannot affect the annual meeting of its shareholders scheduled for Friday. The story looks at the planned agenda, focusing on its decisions to be made.

The State Duma will vote early next week on the draft law concerning the value-added tax (VAT). Ivanovo regional governor Vladislav Tikhomirov shares his negative view on this government draft law, saying that it may destroy the textile sector.

Vimpelcom this week has summed up the results of its performance in the first quarter of this year. The story gives figures showing the company sustained losses in that period.

Slavneft head Mikhail Gutseriyev stated that he is conducting negotiations on a purchase of the Yugraneft corporation and on the creation on its basis the Slavneft-Nizhnevartovskneftergaz company. The story looks at several factors that complicate the negotiations.

Official Kiev's rather pained response to several Russian mass media recent stories that f directly or indirectly f touch on the topic of the Black Sea Fleet makes it possible to speak of a new stage in Russian-Ukrainian relations. The story gives concrete instances that have aggravated relations.

In an interview, North Ossetia's President Alexander Dzasokhov comments on the results of President Vladimir Putin's recent meetings with leaders of Trans-Caucasian states.

Today marks the 111st anniversary of the birth of poet Anna Akhmatova. Literary critic Sergei Danilov describes her life in Tashkent, to which her family was evacuated in 1943.


Information and intelligence structures of Chechen rebels threatening the national security of Russia and all other countries in the Caucasian region are openly functioning on the territory of Georgia. The story features one such Chechen information center that opened in Tbilisi in December 1999.

The story features Izvestia's unprecedented campaign to financially back Russian libraries.

A chapter in the draft administrative reform deals with higher salaries for federal bureaucrats, whose pay may be increased to 5 to 10 times the present amount. If the political will permits this reform, the 2001 budget will include a special article fixing up to 20 billion rubles ($707,714,111) for the purpose instead of the present figure of 3 billion rubles. The story comments on the idea.


According to the report submitted to the government by the Economics Ministry, the growth of Russians' real cash incomes in 2000 is evaluated at 6 percent of the1999 level. The story gives other positive figures on Russians' incomes.

The Defense Ministry opposes the Education Ministry's new doctrine, according to which school children will study for 12 years. The story reveals the essence of the conflict.

The story describes a students' mutiny in the St. Petersburg Spiritual Academy, the first such case in the history of the Russian Orthodox Church over the past 80 years.


A Winter Sports Center with super-modern sports facilities is being built in the Orlovo village not far from Novo-Peredelkino in the Moscow region. Forty private farms have been removed from the place that has been turned into a construction site. The story highlights this grandiose project.

In an interview, writer Vasily Aksyonov, today living in Washington, shares his views on several present-day political and social developments in Russia, saying that the United States is today a guarantor of the existence of independent Russia.

In an interview, Viktor Tarkhov, running for the gubernatorial seat in the forthcoming elections in the Samara region, talks about his economic and social program.


The State Duma Wednesday backed the initiative of providing state support to the major renovation project of the Slavneft-Yaroslavnefteorgsintez company. The story reveals the essence of the project.

Full text of the government directive on allocating budget funds for the environmental protection of Lake Baikal.

The story highlights Rustam Raimov, the best <i>dvornik</i>, or street cleaner, in the city, who arrived in Moscow from South Kazakhstan seven years ago with a suitcase full of his manuscripts to be published. He has reached his goal and now has won the city competition for the best dvornik.


Ever-new Gypsy tribes arrive in Moscow from different regions of Russia. A story features a large group of Gypsies who have arrived from Dagestan, in which, as they say, life is a real hell for them.

According to a recent initiative by Valery Lunin, Dean of the Chemistry Department of Moscow State University, all graduate students will take an oath, similar to the Hippocratic oath, the text of which has been adopted this week. The story reveals the meaning of the act.

Muscovites in the near future will be able to insure grave statues and monuments from vandals and all natural disasters. The concept of this kind of insurance has been worked out by the Moscow City Hall. The story describes the project.

According to the renovation project, the ancient building of the Moscow Planetarium will be raised six meters higher above the ground. The story describes the project, explaining the need for it.

Highly regarded economist Alexei Ulyukayev was among the 15 experts who developed economic programs at the Gref Center for Strategic Planning. In an interview, Ulyukayev speaks about several controversial points of these programs.

According to reports by the State Statistics Committee, the population of Russia shrank by 293,000 people between January and April of this year. The story gives other figures on the country's demography.


The State Duma today is expected to discuss the second reading of bill on new procedures for forming the Federation Council, which deprives regional executive and legislative power heads of the Senate status and together with it of immunity. The story points to deputies' apprehensions linked to the recent cases of arbitrary rule by the Prosecutor General's Office. The story also examines amendments that have been introduced to the draft since the first reading.

Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov's first assistant in the government administration is now Boris Frenkel, who shadow coordinator of the government apparat staff.

Investigators are inventing ever new accusations against Radio Liberty correspondent Andrei Babitsky, who, in turn, is not going to keep silent. The story gives new facts in his case.

First Deputy Finance Minister Vladimir Petrov, who is under investigation now, was elected chairman of the experts' budget legislation council yesterday at the session of the State Duma Budget Committee.

Russia is on the list of 15 countries, in which the tax situation is conducive to creating money laundering centers and which are inactive in the crackdown waged by the world community on such crimes. This was stated by the Bloomberg news agency.

The State Duma intends to declare a moratorium on executing the articles of the general part of the Tax Code establishing state control over luxury purchases. The Duma Budget Committee on Thursday discussed and backed the corresponding proposal submitted by Vice-Speaker Georgy Boos, who insisted that the articles of the code on state control be suspended until the beginning of 2003. The story reveals the essence of the proposal.

President Vladimir Putin is reported to chair a Security Council session today to adopt a doctrine on information security. The Kremlin hastily stated the session was planned beforehand and is not linked to the situation around the Media-MOST holding. The story doubts the sincerity of these assurances.

Aeroflot intends to contest the American anti-tobacco policy. The point is that American authorities on June 2 imposed new rules banning smoking in planes of foreign companies flying to the USA. Aeroflot is one of a few companies that allows its air travelers to smoke. The story reveals the essence of the conflict.

World Bank president James Wulfenson is expected to arrive in Moscow tomorrow to meet with Vladimir Putin. The story explains why the Russian president attaches so much significance to this meeting.

Political analyst Leonid Radzikhovsky reflects on the troublesome situation today in Russia where a hatred of wealthy people has considerably intensified lately and where its citizens are thirsty for fairness, for revenge, and for events similar to those in Stalin's reign (1937 ). All this has become possible under Vladimir Putin.

Energy Minister Alexander Gavrin on Thursday recommended to the government that it preserve the basic assignments on the delivery of energy fuel resources to the home market up to the end of this year and in the first quarter of 2001. In his opinion, the companies' fulfillment of these assignments should remain as the obligatory condition guaranteeing a permit for fuel exports from Russia. The story comments on Gavrin's proposals. In an interview First Deputy Energy Minister Alexander Kochnev comments on the situation in the home fuel market.(5, Kommersant Daily,2


The State Statistics Committee reports that the inflation rate since early June has already amounted to 1.7 percent and by the end of the month will reach 2.5-2.7 percent. In such a situation prices in this year will skyrocket by 30-32 percent. This, the story notes, contradicts the budget and the dynamics of the ruble/dollar rate. The story gives other figures and the table featuring the Central Bank's monetary policy.

President Vladimir Putin on Saturday will make a one-day trip to Kazan to attend the festivities of the Tatars' national holiday--Sabantui. The story features a program of the holiday and of Putin's short stay there.

The St. Petersburg Legislative Assembly on Thursday approved the structure of the city government with governor Vladimir Yakovlev as its head. The story examines several novelties.

Alexei Serko, Sergei Stepashin's personal adviser during the parliamentary elections, has been arrested in St. Petersburg on charges of car theft and of taking an active part in a criminal group that specializes in stealing expensive autos. Serko has been placed in Kresty Prison. The story details his case.

Swiss investigator Daniel Devo, investigating in the Mabetex case, stated that on Tuesday he will bring in an indictment to Behgjet Pacolli and Viktor Stolpovskikh on money laundering and participating in a criminal organization. The story describes these businessmen's cases and their problems.

Yury Koptev, director-general of the Federal Space Agency, is staying in the United States today where he is discussing with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration director Daniel Goldin the construction project of the International Space Station. The story comments on their negotiations.

Bislan Gantamirov, former Grozny Mayor, announced his intention to run for a seat in the State Duma. The story comments on his decision, stating that Moscow approves it.

Vneshtorgbank head Yury Ponomaryov on Thursday stated that they are considering the possibility of buying a package of stock of Renaissance Bank and that the two banks are conducting negotiations on this issue. The story comments on Ponomaryov's statement.

"Kristall" shareholders today are expected to hold a meeting to elect a new board of directors for the vodka distillery. Will it be able to put an end at last to the continuing scandal around this enterprise?

The plans to reform the Railway Ministry do not suit the government, which is supported by its proposals aimed at more radical reform. The story examines the essence of the proposals.

"Severstal" and "Global Steel Exchange" (GSE) in New York on Wednesday signed an agreement on a share entry of the Russian company into the GSE project, a large Internet base for metals trading. The story examines major provisions of the agreement.

The "D'Arcy Moskva" advertising agency and the PR company R.I.M. yesterday signed an agreement on strategic partnership, which is viewed as a reply to the actions by the "Video International" group on the Russian advertising market. The story comments on the document.

In an interview, Education Minister Vladimir Filippov speaks about novelties in the education program for institutes and universities that has beenmapped out by the Gref Center for Strategic Planning.