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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

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




SEGODNYA


In his state-of-the-nation address speech delivered to both houses of parliament on Saturday, President Vladimir Putin singled out the three most painful issues facing the nation: corruption, Russia's vulnerability before international terrorism and the weakness of mass media. The story comments on the speech.


In a letter to the Chairman of the Supreme Court, Vyacheslav Lebedev, six lawyers and State Duma deputies express concern over the low level of judiciary defense for citizens' rights and freedoms.


A terrorist blast in Vladikavkaz central bazaar killed five and injured another 23 people. The story describes how it happened.


The story comments on Yabloko leader Grigory Yavlinsky's report at the party's 8th Congress over the weekend, focusing on the issue of uniting with the Union of Right Forces.


ORT journalist Dmitry Zavadsky has been missing in Belarus since Friday. This event has again raised public concern about Belarus as a country where journalists' work is life threatening.


Radio-1 Station resumed its broadcasts Sunday, which were suspended May 15 due to its huge debts. The station has been re-registered under a new name f "Radio-1-Kind Radio" and with a new owner f one of the structures of the Mikhail Gorbachev Fund. The story describes the renovated radio station and its plans.


Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin, who arrived last week in Okinawa, is to speak at a special session on Russia within the framework of the G-7 Finance Ministers summit. Kudrin will provide a commentary on a new Russian economic program and on problems of clearing off the Soviet-era debt. The story comments on Kudrin's visit to Japan viewing it as a dress rehearsal of Vladimir Putin's visit there.


The third and decisive test of a prototype to the U.S. national missile defense system was conducted without success. If it had been successful, Pentagon head William Cohen should have recommended to President Bill Clinton to launch the first stage of the program already this fall. The story details the experiment.


A terrorist explosion in the "Yerevan" department store in Rostov-on Don Sunday killed two and injured another two locals. The story details the accident.


Rossiisky Kredit Bank private depositors may receive their money back only in the fall due to a decision made June 28 by the Arbitration Court to postpone its judgement on the bank's further fate. The story examines the latest developments in and around Rossiisky Kredit.


Four financial experts predict the fate of the banking system, the dollar and the ruble in the July-August season, stating that there won't be a banking crisis this summer.


In a telephone opinion poll of 1,339 respondents, 964 agreed that power ministers should resign after the recent tragic events in Chechnya.


Many State Duma deputies demand a resignation of Prosecutor General Vladimir Ustinov, since he as the main fighter against corruption, is himself linked to high-level state officials who are suspected of corruption according to reports by Swiss prosecutors. The story examines several reasons behind the deputies' demands.


Chechen leader Aslan Maskhadov stated Thursday on the Chechen television Channel "War" that his troops would seize Gudermes between July 7 and 10. His behaviour, notes the story, is aimed at showing that the federal troops and the Akhmad Kadyrov administration do not control the situation in the republic and that the peaceful negotiations may be conducted only with the participation of rebel leaders.


Lieutenant-General Mikhail Kislitsyn, former Prosecutor of the Moscow Military District, replaced Friday Yury Dyomin in the post of Chief Military Prosecutor. The story comments on the appointment.


An idea announced late last week was to create a single Internet domain ".eu" (European Union) with the aim of boosting the financial-economic integration of Europe. The story reveals the essence of the idea.


The State Duma overturned Friday the Federation Council's veto on the amending appointment and removal procedures for local and federal police chiefs. From now on, the Interior Ministry has the right to release high-level regional policemen without consent from governors and city mayors.


Ukraine's parliament passed the first reading of a draft bill on introducing broader requireents of the use of Ukrainian language on national television and radio. The story comments on the amendment.


The Directorate of the 22nd Moscow International Film Festival approved Friday a competition film program. The story names several films and their creators.


Vladimir Putin's political rating has remained high. In an interview, Andrei Ryabov, an expert in the Carnegie Foundation, states reasons behind its steady character.


The scandal around an attempt to bring to Russia used nuclear fuel and radioactive materials from Asian-Pacific countries and dump them on Simushir Island (South Kurils) is snowballing. Among those participating in this illegal project are the Research Center "Kurchatov Institute" and the Japanese-Taiwan firm "Asia Tat Trading Co.Ltd. (ATT). The story examines the stand by the State Duma Ecology Committee on the issue.


Russia has taken the leading place for the second year in a row on profitability of currency deposits among developing economies. Thus, according to reports from U.S.-based J.P. Morgan investment bank, the profitability of Russian hard currency securities included in the debt obligation indexes of developing countries has risen by 49.78 percent. The story looks at opinions by J.P. Morgan analysts.


NTV and the Journalism Faculty of Moscow State University have launched a joint project to educate TV news commentators and program hosts. The story reveals the essence of the project.


KOMMERSANT DAILY


Professor Theodor Postol of the Massachusetts Technological Institute obtained Pentagon's secret report on results of US tests of the elements of the missile defense system. In an interview he sheds light on concealed results of those tests.


In an interview, head of the Siberian federal district Leonid Drachevsky speaks about his first accomplishments and huge problems at the new post.


State Duma deputy Boris Berezovsky intends to create a political party jointly with several members of the Federation Council. In an interview Berezovsky enthusiastically talks about his ambitious plans.


The Foreign Ministry harshly criticized Friday Finnish insurers who refused to share their profits with their Russian counterparts. In case the conflict continues, Finnish tourists will not be able to visit Russia. The story features the conflict.


Transneft intends to demand a $29 million compensation from the Azeri State Oil Company for suspending oil transportation along the Baku-Novorossiisk oil pipeline. The story details the conflict.


Gazprom is active in buying up shares of the third bank in Germany f Commerzbank AG. The story comments on Gazprom's action.


Russky Alyuminy, headed by aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska, announced Friday the purchase of a controlling stake in Belokalitvensk Metal Association (Rostov Region). Besides that, the company considers the possibility of buying packages of stock of leading electrode plants.


Nizhegorodmotors has rejected rumours that FIAT has bought a controlling stake in it, noting that the changed shares of founders in its capital was a technical measure. Along with this, U.S. General Motors, a FIAT co-owner, may reject another project to create a joint venture with AvtoVAZ. The story reveals the company's plans.


"I'm willing to give to the government a list of financial agencies that secretly funneled out of Russia and hid abroad more than $650 million," stated NRB President Alexander Lebedev, head of the National Investment Council, in his article of the weekly Kommersant-Vlast. Lebedev assures that he knows how to return the funneled money.


Insurance companies said Friday they are willing to lend money to the government if the latter tells them what the money will be spent on. The story comments on the insurers' proposal.


The Finance Ministry issued Friday an order to release new Russian savings and loan bonds. The first such bonds will be released within the next several weeks. The story details the project.


NEZAVISIMAYA GAZETA


The World Bank intends to conduct negotiations on releasing to Moscow a credit for a structural renovation of the economy. With this aim in mind, a new group of WB experts is expected to arrive in Moscow July 17 to start consultations on resuming crediting.


In an interview with Paris-Match, President Vladimir Putin says in part that Europe must be thankful to Russia for its struggle against "Terrorism International."


The scandal caused by the recent publication of a think tank for 500 outstanding people in the Federal Studies Agency's Internet site continues. The story describes what unidentified telephone intruders proposed to editor-in-chief of the site Sergei Sokolov on Friday.


In a far-ranging interview, former Justice Minister Valentin Kovalyov, who was illegally arrested Feb. 3, 1999 on charges of allegedly squandering budget money and recently released, talks about how he was arrested and kept in terrible prison conditions. He also speaks about his future plans.


NOVIYE IZVESTIA


The story gives several examples of city pharmacies selling counterfeit medications. Why does it happen? Who is responsible for this market?


According to results of a July 1-4 opinion poll of 1,600 respondents conducted by the VTSIOM Research Center, 55 percent of Russians support continuing the war in Chechnya, and 33 percent believe that peaceful negotiations should be started with Chechnya.


NOVAYA GAZETA


The main organizational and mobilization board of the General Staff of the Armed Forces admitted in mid-June that in this spring's army conscription campaign, about 50,000 draftees dodged the army service. The figure for last year was 38,000. The military say that the reason for this state of affairs is the war in Chechnya. The story comments on the issue.


Ingushetia's President Ruslan Aushev failed last week to attend the conference of leaders from the North Caucasian regions on the situation in Chechnya, which was hastily convened by the presidential administration in Mozdok and conducted by President Vladimir Putin. The story explains the official and unofficial reasons behind Aushev's absence from the conference.


The story reports on how Nalchik OMON troops ousted 416 families of Chechen refugees last week from Druzhba and Oktyabr vacation resorts in Kabardin-Balkaria. The story notes that it's hard to believe that funding of the refugees' camps in this republic has been suspended. Who is responsible for this inhuman act?


The story offers major theses from President Vladimir Putin's state-of-the-nation address speech July 8.


In an interview, State Duma Deputy Vladimir Ryzhkov explains why he has quit his membership in the Unity Party.


In an interview, State Duma Deputy Boris Nemtsov, leader of the SD SPS faction, answers the following questions: Which federal bureaucrats are lobbying for the interests of the aluminum monopoly or the advertising monopoly Video International? Which lobbyist companies are noticed in the present Duma?


In an interview, Andre Glouksmann, 62, a prominent French philosopher and human rights advocate who works at the French Academy of Sciences, who has returned from his trip to Dagestan and Chechnya, shares his impressions from his visits, focusing on Russians' and Chechens' different approaches to war.


ROSSIISKAYA GAZETA


The newspaper prints the full text of the speech by Alexander Lukashenko, Chairman of the Supreme State Council of the Belarus-Russia Union State, at the session of the State Council on June 27, 2000.


Press Minister Mikhail Lesin visited the Moscow office of Radio Liberty as a guest. The Moscow Times correspondent Andrei Zolotov and The Daily Telegraph reporter Marcus Warren put questions to him.


Different schemes of relationships between the government and owners and managers of gold mines and banks have been actively discussed over the past several years. The story features several powerful players in this market today.


KOMSOMOLSKAYA PRAVDA


The story highlights teacher Albert Shulgin, 33, winner of the title of best teacher in the city of Kurgan, who has turned out to be a pedophile, terrorizing a whole class of underaged pupils. Shulgin was released from the pre-trial detention center by the local court according to the recent amnesty.


In an interview, Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov answers the following questions f Doesn't the June outburst of inflation threaten another ruble fall? What do you intend to do to make the ruble rate steady? Will the so-called dollar "sterilization" resultin raising the hard currency rate ? Kasyanov also says that the Central Bank's currency reserves today amount to almost $21 billion.


In an interview, former Finance Minister Mikhail Zadornov looks at several reasons behind the fall of the dollar.


The rocket booster Proton together with the Russian service module Zvezda of the International Space Station will launch into space an ad for Pizza Hut restaurants on July 12. The story describes the project.


Engineers from Ufa Aviation University have invented wonder-boots, which may be used in the army and in entertainment attractions in national recreation parks. The story describes their special features.


Famed actor Konstantin Raikin, artistic director of the Satirikon Theater, turned 50 on Saturday. In an interview, his wife Yelena, an actress, speaks about her happy life with her husband and about his best theatrical roles.


Highly regarded singer Marina Khlebnikova has insured herself for $1 million against an encounter with aliens. She explains her behavior.


The famous House of Creative Work in Bolshevo, in the Moscow region, which in Soviet times belonged to the Filmmakers' Union, has been put up for sale. The story describes this wonderful nook.


MOSKOVSKY KOMSOMOLETS


The story, against the background of the falling dollar, looks at those who need the strong ruble and who need the weak ruble, focusing on reasons behind their interests.


Specialists from the Semashko Research Medical Center and the federal State Sanitary Agency plan in September and October to conduct a joint venture aimed at seeing how habitat affects the physical development of children. The information will be used for compiling a book titled "The Children of Russia in 2000."


The number of mentally ill children in Moscow has considerably increased over the past several years f this is the way Muscovites pay for the "happiness" of living in the capital city. The story gives figures to illustrate the point.


In an interview, highly regarded composer Eduard Khanok, author of many popular songs, talks about his new works and his beloved performers.


In an interview, writer Yury Mamleyev, who this spring received the prestigious Pushkin Prize, founded by the Alfred Topfer Foundation and the International PEN Club, talks about his home, parents, works and friends.


Psychotherapist Olga Troitskaya has developed a system of physical exercises that help improve the work of the brain. In an interview, she talks about her system.


In an interview, Sergei Kuznetsov, an initiator of the musical group Laskovy Mai, speaks about his songs, about his group and about his response to numerous accusations by critics and reporters that his creations are mediocre.


Moscow Communists got together last week for their plenary session to discuss the party's policy in response to the president's recent reforms. The story reflects on the KPRF and its leaders' recent behavior to collaborate with oligarchs and Unity, viewing their present steps as a departure from the party line.


Commercial kiosks may emerge on the territory of the Kremlin in the near future. They existed there before 1990, at which time they were demolished on order from former First Lady Raisa Gorbachev. The story explains why they will be restored.