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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

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

Izvestia
Kommersant
Nezavisimaya Gazeta
Rossiiskaya Gazeta
Komomolskaya Pravda
Moskovsky Komsomolets


Izvestia
www.izvestia.ru

The Security Council at an extended session Friday discussed measures aimed at making state anti-drug policy more effective. President Vladimir Putin, who presided over them, stated that drug addiction had acquired huge dimensions and become a national disaster threatening the health and well-being of the nation. The story examines with a critical eye the session's concluding document. Also featured in Kommersant Daily, Vremya MN, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, Trud, Komsomolskaya Pravda.

In his letter (cited in full) to the Russian public, U.S. ambassador Alexander Vershbow calls on Russian citizens to back the United States in its crackdown on international terrorism.

According to the Central Bank's directive, any Russian citizen, starting Sept. 29, may open a bank account in any of 34 foreign banks. The story describes how it will be done.

The State Duma Friday passed in the first reading the draft 2002 budget based on the forecast of the $23.5 per barrel oil price. The story describes the results of voting. Also featured in Kommersant Daily, Vremya MN, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, Trud, Komsomolskaya Pravda.

The CIS heads of state summit in Moscow on Friday discussed 19 issues on the agenda focusing on a crackdown on terrorism. The story examines the CIS statement on the issue drafted by Russia. Also featured in Kommersant Daily, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, Trud.

Georgian authorities Friday asked Chechen field commander Ruslan Gelayev and his gang to leave the territory of the republic, which they use as their shelter today. Also featured in Nezavisimaya Gazeta, Komsomolskaya Pravda.

According to contradictory reports, a curfew was imposed on Chechnya on Friday. The story examines the statement of Major-General Sergei Kizyun.

The State Duma Budget Committee head Alexander Zhukov Friday stated the need to revise the tax legislation provisions canceling, starting Jan.1, 2002, the mass media benefits. Besides, the State Duma in October is expected to discuss two draft bills concerning this issue. In an interview, Nikolai Bulayev, deputy head of the Duma Information Policy Committee, examines the situation around the problem.

U.S. President George W. Bush's father George Bush, former secretary of state, James Baker, and former defense secretary, Frank Carlucci, all in their time visited the headquarters of Osama bin Laden's family in Saudi Arabia. The fact itself that the bin Ladens directly contacted American leaders and invested their capital in the U.S. defense industry has caused confusion in America. The story gives details about those contacts.

Council of European Human Rights commissioner Alvaro Hil-Robles on Friday managed to receive "Russia's consent to holding a meeting with Chechen rebel representatives, including officials close to Aslan Maskhadov." The meeting is scheduled for November and should pass under the aegis of the Council of Europe. Brief.

Prosecutor's Office and FSB official Alexander Rozanov Friday was appointed head of the new government Board for Defense of State Secrets. The post of head of the new government Control Board remains vacant.

Federation Council member Vyacheslav Kalyamin, 60, former head of the Arkhangelsk Regional Assembly, was killed Friday in an auto accident on the 208th kilometer of the Arkhangelsk-Moscow road. Also featured in Kommersant Daily, Komsomolskaya Pravda, Trud.

The Russian Embassy in Colombia on Friday sent the Foreign Ministry and the special services an appeal requesting assistance in releasing Russian citizen Viktor Bychek, who on Wednesday was kidnapped by unidentified bandits. The story gives details.

Moscow police on Friday at last arrested Larisa Roshchina, 20, secretary of the Perovsky Regional Court in Moscow, mother of a 3-month-old boy, on charges of killing two men on Startovaya Ulitsa on Sept. 21. The story gives details. Also featured in Kommersant Daily, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, Komsomolskaya Pravda, Moskva Supplement, Trud, MK.

Several stories examine the Taliban bases, their training camps and their terrible crimes against humankind.

On Oct. 1, President Vladimir Putin will leave for Brussels, which on Oct. 2 will become the venue for a 2-day Russia-European Union summit. The story looks at its agenda.

The State Duma in mid-October is expected to discuss draft amendments to the law concerning major guarantees of citizens' election rights. The story examines several proposed amendments.



Uzbekistan has confirmed its intention to provide, if need be, its air space to the United States for carrying out its antiterrorist operation. This was stated on Friday by the republic's president, Islam Karimov. His statement, the story notes, has revealed serious political differences existing between CIS states and Russia.



The process of fusion is in full swing in Udmurtia between separate groups of local capital (oil mini-oligarchs) and local authorities that are being placed under these groups' control. The story gives concrete facts illustrating the point.

The UES Board of Directors Friday discussed a broad range of issues concerning reforming the electricity energy sector. Another point of discussion was the upcoming revision of the UES's treaty with the Bank of New York, since the energy holding decided to refuse to vote on the company's American Depositary Receipts. The story comments on the issue.

Several metals companies (they are cited) have accused the Railways Ministry of wagon shortages. The story describes a conflicting situation.

The Japanese NTTDoCoMo company, a leader on the internal telecommunications market, on Monday Oct.1 will at last begin, on a mass scale, to provide its clients with the services of so-called third generation communications. The story explains why clients are not happy with the new cellular services.

After the recent terrorist attacks on the United States the issue on residents defense in the event of fires, explosions, and terrorist acts has become so acute as never before. But Russians are likely to be unable to use the latest domestic inventions in this sphere, because the new products that are already being bought by many countries are not allowed for public use by the fire agency. The story examines the situation.

The first digital television network will appear at the end of this year in St. Petersburg, and in 2002 it will emerge in Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod.

Starting October, the new company NTV-Mir will air NTV channel's programs to foreign countries. The brief examines the project.

Kommersant
www.kommersant.ru

The CIS heads of state Council summit in Moscow on Friday abolished the Inter-State Eurasian Coal and Metals Association. The Council now will deal exclusively with antiterrorist issues. On the same day Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov and his Ukrainian counterpart Anatoly Kinakh failed to come to agreement on Ukraine's debts for Russian gas. The story comments on the issues. Also featured in Rossiiskaya Gazeta.

Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov has signed a directive on including Kremlin administration deputy head Viktor Ivanov in the boards of directors of the Antei industrial company and the Central Design Bureau Almaz. The story reveals the essence of the government decision.

In an interview, Chechen rebel leader Aslan Maskhadov talks about contacts between his representatives and the federal side before and after President Vladimir Putin's recent statement on possible negotiations with Chechen rebel representatives.



In an interview, Aslan Maskhadov's representative Mairbek Vachagayev says that no talks are being conducted now with the federal side. He also notes that the Chechen side plans to intensify its actions against the federal troops.

Though President Vladimir Putin's visit to Germany has not yielded any concrete results, its worldwide significance is immense ? the West has begun to view Russia as its real ally. The story comments on results of Putin's visit.

Russian travelers going to Bulgaria will need visas starting Oct. 1. The story examines factors that have made Sofia take this step.

Chechen Zaurbekov, a 16-year-old ringleader of a Chechen group of bandits involved in organizing terrorist acts against local administrations and federal servicemen, was killed in Chechnya on Thursday. The story describes his numerous crimes.

Chechen rebels on Thursday seized a private television company in the Avtury settlement and went on air to tell its residents about the international plot against Muslims.

The Chief Board of Punishment Execution of the Justice Ministry on Friday held a founding conference of the inter-regional public organization The Russian Research Penitentiary Society. The story examines its aims and tasks. Also featured in Vremya MN.

Georgian head of state Eduard Shevardnadze in Tbilisi on Friday met with Abkhazian Prime Minister Anri Dzhergenia. This meeting showed that both sides would like to normalize their relations.



The U.S. official at the trade negotiations, Robert Zellik, in Moscow on Friday met with Economic Development Minister German Gref and officially told him that the U.S. Trade Department has begun to consider Russia's request on granting it the status of a country with a market economy. The story notes that such is George W. Bush's concession for Russian support of the United States in the struggle against international terrorism.



The fall of palladium prices has reached menacing dimensions: over the past week alone its prices fell 25 percent, and since the beginning of the year, almost three times. The story examines negative consequences of this fall for Russia.

The Gazprom Board of Directors on Saturday held a session to discuss four issues on the agenda. The story examines their significance. Also featured in Vremya MN.

An unprecedented scandal has erupted on the construction market in Samara, where at the initiative of the Regional Prosecutor's Office, the local Registration Chamber has suspended the registration of 36 construction projects in the regional center. The story says why.

The Central Bank decided, starting Sept. 28, to annul the license of Bank Austria Kreditanstalt on performing banking transactions. The brief says why.

The Moscow government has paid to Credit Suisse First Boston Bank another $40 million as part of its debt on the $295 million credit. According to Moscow Financial Agency Deputy Director General Dmitry Gladsky, the payment was made on Sept. 28.

The FBI as a result of its investigation into the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington on Sept. 11 presented to the public photos (and names) of the 19 suspects. Also presented was evidence saying that one or two terrorists had had contacts with Osama bin Laden. Now the task is to arrest their accomplices. Also featured in Komsomolskaya Pravda.

Altai forensic medical experts Friday identified the remains of Julia Tikhtiekova that were found in a forest. She is one of the five first-year students of the Altai State Technical University who disappeared in the summer of last year. The story details the case.

Nezavisimaya Gazeta
www.ng.ru

On Friday, the presidential representative in the Southern Federal District, Viktor Kazantsev, made a statement saying that his representatives had met with Aslan Maskhadov's officials. Maskhadov's representative in Europe, Mairbek Vachagayev, categorically denied establishing such contacts, saying that Kazantsev's pronouncements were a lie.

Russia has begun to deliver military hardware to the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan. Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov stated Friday that Russian servicemen will not be moved to fight in Afghanistan.

Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov has signed a directive concerning the property of the former Soviet Filmmakers Union, the successor of which is the Russian Filmmakers Union. Nikita Mikhalkov, its head, talks about his agency's property.

State Duma Deputy Alexander Shishlov, a member of the Yabloko Central Council Bureau, analyses the situation within his group, making it clear for its numerous political opponents, who over the past several weeks have tried to present it as scandalous, using the mass media. The author examines what Yabloko has achieved over this time.

On Friday, President Vladimir Putin made a television statement in which he spoke about Russia's willingness to launch a struggle against international terrorism. He also stated Russian support for the United States in its anti-terrorist coalition. What factors have determined the president's decisions? Will Putin's pronouncements affect the alignment of forces in the world and inside the country? What concrete changes should be expected in Russia's foreign and home political policies? Three political analysts share their views on these issues.

The presidential commission revising the regions' treaties and agreements with the federal center is also to distribute powers in all spheres of life between the federal center, the regions and the municipalities.

The Moscow Region Arbitration Court has ruled in favor of Bryntsalov A, a pharmaceutical company, in its suit against the Health Ministry.

Russia between Sept. 14 and 21 increased its hard currency reserves by $700 million ? from $37.1 billion up to $37.8 billion. This index has increased by 35 percent since the start of the year.

The story gives facts and figures to show how the number of Moslems and their prestige over the past decades have increased in the non-Islamic world.

The Moscow Arbitration Court on Thursday ruled that a Moscow government directive on moving the Ptichy Rynok, or Animal Market, outside the capital was illegal.

TV6 chief producer Alexander Levin talks about new programs on his channel in the new television season.

Rossiiskaya Gazeta
www.rg.ru

The deadline for disarming offered by President Vladimir Putin to the Chechen rebels expired Friday. What comes next? The story reflects on the rebels' possible reaction. Also covered in Komsomolskaya Pravda and Moskovsky Komsomolets.

Moscow Region Duma deputies stated Friday that, starting Oct. 1, minimum wages in the region will increase from the present 600 rubles ($20.48) up to 800 rubles.

The Prosecutor General's Office has instituted criminal proceedings against two leaders from the Moscow Mint on charges of embezzlement and abuse of power.

Komomolskaya Pravda
www.kp.ru

A special "hotel" has been opened for homeless cows, sheep and goats in the village of Etkul in the Chelyabinsk region, where the animals are well-fed and feel happy.

Yantarenergo Deputy Director-General Alexander Aleko talks about his enterprise's financial difficulties, the reasons behind them, and about measures being taken to overcome the financial crisis.

The Nuclear Energy Ministry has decided to build a modern spent nuclear fuel storage site in Krasnoyarsk, on the territory of the existing Zheleznogorsk plant.

Lensk municipal authorities are awaiting President Vladimir Putin, who, after the spring floods destroyed the city, promised to come again when Lensk was built anew. Today the project has been nearly completed. The story features newly built houses, facilities and streets that will be shown to Putin.

A new Moscow restaurant on Presnensky Val ? Chkalov ? the opening ceremony of which is scheduled for Monday, was named after the famous Soviet pilot Valery Chkalov, despite the protests of his children. Chkalov's son Igor speaks indignantly about the conflict. Also covered in the Moskva Supplement.

The story reports on how Aeroflot has secured itself from terrorist attack. Also, three lists cited here show: (1) what is forbidden to bring into Russia; (2) what is acceptable to take away only with a special permit from the airlines; and (3) what things should be obligatorily stated in the customs declaration. Also covered in the Moskva Supplement.

The Figure Skating Federation has been headed by Valentin Piseyev for 35 years. In an interview on the occasion of his 60th birthday, he recounts the most interesting episodes from world championships. Also covered in Sport Supplement.

The number of Krasnoyarsk teenagers working in the summer on projects aimed at improving the city has drastically increased lately. Alexei Chaika, head of the local Youth Policy Committee of the Krasnoyarsk Administration, talks about these teams.

Moskovsky Komsomolets
www.mk.ru

The Uchinsk water reservoir is a major strategic facility in Moscow since it supplies drinking water to about 30 percent of the city's population. The story describes how this drinking water is protected from terrorist attack.

Maxim Dunayevsky, son of the great composer Isaak Dunayevsky, has been successfully working in the United States for several years, staging his musicals and writing music for films. He talks about his creative work, about his family and about his dream ? to open a synthetic theater in Moscow.