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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
Noviye Izvestia
Rossiiskaya Gazeta
Komomolskaya Pravda
Moskovsky Komsomolets


Izvestia
www.izvestia.ru

The story describes a continuing scandalous situation concerning Andrei Vavilov, a former Deputy Finance Minister and now head of Severnaya Neft. Rumors have been circulating about his alleged criminal activities.

The Turkish government has given up its plans to raise visa tariffs for Russian travelers, however several Moscow tour agencies on June 1 announced a doubling of the cost of an entry visa to Turkey.

Gazprom directors have decided to make public certain previously undisclosed details about the company's activities. Yury Goryainov, a spokesman for the Gazprom board, focused on the realization of company construction projects. He also expressed his opinion about the newly appointed head Alexei Miller.

The Military Cosmic Forces have been reinstated as a special arm of the military on June 1, after being abolished in 1997. The story examines their new structure, focusing on their expediency.

Ekho Moskvy Editor in Chief Alexei Venediktov stated that Media-MOST holding head Vladimir Gusinsky has presented his controlling stake of the radio station to its journalists. The deal was signed on May 25, before the ruling of the Arbitration Court on abolishing the Media-MOST holding. Brief.

The Commission on Protective Measures in Foreign Trade raised the oil export duty from 22 euros up to 30.5 euros per ton on June 1. The story examines factors that urged the measure.

Corruption among highly placed state bureaucrats is a serious problem in Russia. The story examines this issue.

The story examines results of the Commonwealth of Independent States summit in Minsk where 18 economic agreements were signed over a two-day period.

Valery Borshchev, a spokesman for the Pardons Commission under President Putin, stated that the Kremlin administration is drafting a plan to abolish the commission. The story comments on the issue.

The Primorsky Regional Court on Friday ruled that gubernatorial candidate Sergei Darkin has not violated election legislation. The story concludes that he may become governor on June 17.

The Stars of White Nights Festival opened in St. Petersburg on June 2. The brief examines its program and participants.

The newly appointed Russian Ambassador to Ukraine, Viktor Chernomyrdin, made his first diplomatic step when he ordered a portrait of Ukraine's President Leonid Kuchma for his birthday. The portrait will be painted by famed artist Nikas Safronov.

The Interior Ministry's Investigative Committee has completed an investigation into a criminal case involving six former executive managers of the Russian Insulin company, who are accused of huge embezzlements. The story details their case.

Kommersant
www.kommersant.ru

The Unity Party and the Fatherland movement will not merge, though their leaders Sergei Shoigu and Yury Luzhkov promised that they would work together. The story comments on results of their meeting on June 1.

Former Grozny Mayor Bislan Gantamirov will be appointed chief federal inspector for Chechnya, on the staff of the presidential representative in the South Federal District. The story examines his duties.

Practically all vodka distilleries have suspended their production, after a new system of levying excises on alcoholic products was imposed on June 1. The story explains why this measure will bring Russia to the brink of an acute vodka shortage.

The Prosecutor General's Office on Friday tried to bring in a newly worded indictment against former Aeroflot Deputy Director General Nikolai Glushkov. The story details his case.

The 12th Open Russian Film Festival opened in Sochi on Saturday, and the 8th International Film Festival is to open on Sunday. Both are part of the Kinotavr Film Festival. The story features their programs and film stars.

After a two -year interval, the Russian navy has resumed its participation in the Baltops-2001 NATO marine exercises that began Friday in the Baltic Sea. The story describes the event.

The story examines the aim of American philanthropist George Soros's visit to Yaroslavl on June 1-2.

Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov on June 1 met with Ukraine's newly appointed Premier Anatoly Kinakh in Minsk, to discuss the problem of gas debt. The story examines results of their negotiations.

On Friday, First Deputy Tax Minister Alexander Smirnov reported on how the May 23 government decree concerning the procedure of restructuring enterprises' budget debts will be put into effect.

Energy tariffs in Primorye were raised by 40 percent and in Mordovia by 28 percent; the measures will come into effect on June 1. The story examines negative consequences of the measure.

Uralelektromed's purchase of a controlling stake of the Karabashsky Copper Melting Combine has triggered a conflict between the Ural Mining Metal Company and the Kyshtymsky Copper Electrolysis Plant. The story discusses the problem.

The Lithuanian government has proposed that LUKoil buy 33 percent of stock of Mazeikiu Nafta. The story examines the proposal in detail.

A ban on beef imports from Europe has been imposed in Russia and will come into effect on June 1. The story comments on the measure.

The Central Bank has imposed a temporary administration on Infobank, starting June 4, for the period of three months. Brief.

Novosibirskenergo Director General Vitaly Tomilov has been fired. The brief describes the conflict within the company.

The Estonian Hansapank bank has bought 90.733 percent of stock of the Lithuanian Lietuvos Taupomasis Bankas state-controlled bank for $37.5 million. The brief describes the deal.

The Novolipetsk Metal Combine shareholders at their biannual meeting on June 30 will discuss a proposal to increase charter capital by offering additional shares to the tune of $200 million.

Nezavisimaya Gazeta
www.ng.ru

Lithuania has become the 141st full-fledged member of the World Trade Organization. Latvia and Estonia, Lithuania's neighbors, became members in 1999. Brief.

Nezavisimaya Gazeta ffers a list of 20 leading policy makers in Russia in May. VP-T Research Center spokesman Alexander Komozin comments on the rating.

The stay of the second major space expedition in the International Space Station will most probably be prolonged for another month due to defects in the Canadian manipulator Canadarm. The story gives details.

State Duma deputy Sergei Popov, deputy head of the Statehood Committee, examines positive and negative features of judicial reform.

In an interview, Deputy Head of the Constitutional Court Tamara Morshchakova shares her view on a draft bill on judicial and legal reform, saying that a corrupt judge is less evil than a dependent judge.

In an interview Andres Tarand, head of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Estonian Parliament, and Doris Hertrampf, head of the OSCE mission in Estonia, speak among other things about the problems of Russians and the Russian language in the republic.

Noviye Izvestia

Liberal Democratic Party of Russia leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky sent a letter to US President George W. Bush's two daughters on June 1, World Children's Day, in which the Russian politician writes that the latest rumors about scandals involving them have distressed him. The brief cites several lines from the letter.

Presidential Representative in the Ural Federal District Pyotr Latyshev is demanding three VIP cottages for his residence 20 kilometers from Yekaterinburg, which has triggered more outcries that too many luxury homes are allotted to high-ranking politicians. The story gives details.

In a farewell interview US Ambassador James Collins, who is leaving Moscow in mid-July, optimistically describes Russian-American relations, hoping that the upcoming summit will be a success. The Ambassador remarked that when describing US-Russian relation, the mass media often exaggerates problems.

A new way of adding revenues to the local budget has been found in Omsk. The regional public organization The Union of Struggle for Social Justice in the Sphere of Human Rights and Freedoms has proposed to the deputies in the Legislative Assembly and the City Council to levy a tax on those unfaithful in marriage . The story comments on an official appeal to local authorities by Union leader Anatoly Stepanov.

Writer Mikhail Veller shares his viewpoint on the future fate of the Kuril Islands. The author stresses that the question is not whether or not to give them back to Japan but for how long Russia will manage to hold on to these territories.

Rossiiskaya Gazeta
www.rg.ru

In an interview academic Yevgeny Velikhov, head of the Kurchatov Institute research center, comments in part on reports alleging that the Presidium of the Russian Academy of Sciences has issued a directive demanding that all scientists inform their superiors about their contacts with foreigners.

The Prosecutor General's Office on Friday sent to Italy an international investigative commission on the Fratti case, concerning the illegal export from Russia of about 1,000 Russian orphans from orphanages in the Volgograd region and abuses of power by top managers there. Brief.

Starting June 3, Hungary will introduce a visa regime for Russian travelers. In an interview, the head of the Consular Department of the Hungarian Embassy in Moscow Imre Laslotsky and his deputy Endre Sabo reveal the essence of the measure, focusing on factors that have caused it.

An exhibition of paintings by artist Oleg Vukolov will open in the Exhibition Hall Novy Manezh on June 5. The story highlights the painter and his works.

The story describes an overhaul in the St. Trinity Sergiyeva Lavra, a gem of Russian culture that is nearing completion.

Document. The Federal Constitutional Law Concerning the State of Emergency. Full text.

Document. The Federal Law on Introducing Amendments to the Second Part of the Tax Code including Chapter 23 entitled "Tax on Incomes of Individuals". Full text.

Komomolskaya Pravda
www.kp.ru

The Yermolayevsky vodka distillery Kuyurgaza in Bashkortostanhas received the World Quality Commitment International Star Award at the 18th International Convention. The story features the enterprise, its high-quality products and traditions.

The newspaper offers the first erotic map of Russia with detailed information about erotic clubs, rape statistics for each region, information on erotic shows, etc.

A public cafe dubbed "Cafe Putin" has opened on the territory of the Kremlin in a diplomatic foyer of the State Kremlin Palace, the former Palace of Congresses. The story describes the place and the food that is served there.

The story describes the situation in TV-6 after Yevgeny Kiselyov became its director general. The staff writers there have split into two groups; the old pre-Kiselyov journalists with low salaries, and the new employees who have welcomed Kiselyov, and whose earnings are very high. The story describes a source of this money, saying that it may soon be stopped.

A photo show of Reuters photo reporters has opened in the Moscow Photo Center on 8, Gogolevsky Bulvar, near the metro station Kropotkinskaya. The show will be open until June 14. The story describes the event.

The story looks at several food and non-food products, that along with other commodities may go up in price this month.

The legendary Armenian Radio (Armyanskoye Radio) has marked its 40th anniversary. The story examines its origin, explaining why the station's jokes became very popular in Soviet times.

Moskovsky Komsomolets
www.mk.ru

In the NTV "Hero of the Day " program on Thursday, media tycoon Boris Berezovsky predicts an early resignation of President Vladimir Putin, remarking that any government that relies on approval ratings and not concrete arguments tends to have a relatively short survival rate. Political observer Alexander Minkin comments on Berezovsky's anti-Putin comments.

The Russian government has signed a contract with the Dutch firm Mammoet on raising the sunken Kursk submarine. The rest of the firms that will participate, such as the Dutch company Smit Tak and the Norwegian firm Halluburton Subsea, will be viewed as subcontractors. The story examines the document.

The story reports on how Moscow prostitutes are working for a creation of their own labour union, although the Moscow Federation of Independent Trade Unions rejects all their appeals.