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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

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

Noviye Izvestia
Moskovskiye Novosti
Argumenty i Fakty
Rossiiskaya Gazeta
Komomolskaya Pravda


The UN-sponsored World Racism Conference in Durban, South Africa, is on the brink of failure. The story explains the reason, saying that the raging scandal shows a world-wide clash between civilizations, nations and races. The focus is Russia's stand on this controversial issue. (Kommersant Daily, 8, Vremya Novostei, 6, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 6, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 7 )

In an interview, Moscow State University Professor Apollon Davidson, head of the Center for African Studies of the Institute of General History, comments on the problem of racism and nationalism in the contemporary world.

In an interview, former Soviet citizen Alexander Rozenshtein, now a commander of a paratrooper battalion in the Israeli army, who on his vacation visited his relatives in Moscow, expresses his opinion as an Israeli army officer.

The Natural Resources Ministry is drafting a concept of state timber policy. Experts say that together with oil and gas, timber should become a major item of budget revenues. In an interview, Deputy Natural Resources Minister Yury Kukuyev examines the state of this sector.

The great French choreographer Rolan Petit has arrived in Moscow to stage a ballet at the Bolshoi Theater based on Pushkin's "The Queen of Spades." The first night is scheduled for Nov. 4. The story describes the ballet master's creative plans. (Kommersant Daily, 10, Vremya Novostei, 7, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 8, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 8 )

A story describes a split in the "Mosenergo" leadership, saying that presidential envoy in the Central Federal District Georgy Poltavchenko has joined the continuing struggle for the company's director-general. (Kommersant Daily, 4)

The Railways Ministry in October intends to raise the price of railway tickets by 30 percent. The story examines factors urging the ministry to take this measure.

The "Hewlett-Packard" company has bought "Compaq" for $25 billion, which is the most significant and sensational merger in the computer world today. As a result, a supercorporation will appear on the market with a 150,000 staff and with an expected profit of about $4 billion. (Kommersant Daily, 4, Vremya MN, 1, Vremya Novostei, 1, 4)

President Vladimir Putin Tuesday introduced amendments in the decree concerning the Federal Energy Commission. Economic Development Minister German Gref stated that the decree legalizes the decision on concentrating the functions of tariff regulation in the single body. (Kommersant Daily, 2, Nezavisimaya gazeta, 3., Vremya Novostei, 1 )

Pre-election passions are raging in Belarus. Alexander Lukashenko's major rival at the forthcoming presidential elections will be the single candidate from the republic's democratic forces ? Vladimir Goncharik. In an interview, he speaks about his chances to win. (Vremya MN, 2 )

The struggle between the Lipetsk administration and the Novolipetsk Metals Combine (NLMC) for control over the leading regional television company "TVK" continued on Tuesday. In case of losing the struggle, NLMC head Vladimir Lisin has no intention to quit the media business ? he plans to take part in a new expensive and ambitious project ? the creation of the federal newspaper "Gazeta."

The Moscow International Book-Fair is to open today at the All-Russian Exhibition Center (former VDNKH). The story features the events and its participants. (Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 1,3 )

A book (in Russian and in English) titled " Navy Arms?Encyclopaedia of the 21st Century. Weapons and Technologies of Russia," is on sale in American bookshops. Its publishers are the Russian Defense Ministry and the "Tommax Ltd" private company. The story reviews the 600-page book. (4)

The Moscow City Duma today is to hold its first session this fall. The story examines its agenda. (Kommersant Daily, 3)

The Novosibirsk Court today will begin open hearings on the case of Viktor Tikhonov, who is accused of an involvement in preparations of an attempt upon the life of Kemerovo governor Aman Tuleyev.

The State History Museum on Tuesday on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the UPDK put up an exhibition "Ambassadorial Moscow. Traditions of City Hospitality." The story describes the event, focusing on the history of this state service.

The Justice Ministry Tuesday registered the State Customs Committee's order allowing the official dealers to import autos according to a discount scheme. The story reveals the essence of the committee's order. (Kommersant Daily, 4)

In an interview, "Aviastar-JV" Executive Director Valery Maltsev examines serious problems experienced by domestic civil aviation today.

A conference "The Creation of the Electrical Energy Competitive Wholesale Market in Russia" will open today in Moscow. Its sponsors stated that the first non-commercial partnership ? "Administrator of the Trading System of the Wholesale Market of the Electrical Energy of the Unified Energy Systems of Russia ? will be founded today.

Another story examines major changes awaiting the precious metals and precious stones sector.

In an interview, Leonid Tolpezhnikov, chief of the Precious metals and Precious stones Department of the Finance Ministry, examines the situation in this most clandestine sector.

Sept. 6 marks 10 years since St. Petersburg has regained its historical name. In an interview, historian Alexander Margolis recounts about how it happened.

Israel's Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has come to Moscow to seek Russia's support, and his hopes have justified: too many things link up Russia to this Jewish state. Over a million its former compatriots live there and the common enemy is Islamic extremism. The story comments on results of Sharon's visit to Moscow. (Kommersant Daily,1,8, Vremya Novostei, 2, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 1,7, Rossisikaya Gazeta, 1,7)


"PricewaterhouseCoopers" on Tuesday published a report on the performance of the "Unified Energy Systems" (UES ) company last year. The pessimistic conclusion is that the company can suspend its work any moment. The story comments on the document, focusing on UES's response to it.

CIS foreign ministers today will get together in Moscow where the Russian Foreign Minister intends in a tough manner to remind to his partners of collective discipline and financial obligations. The story looks at Russia's serious intentions.

Vladimir Putin Tuesday received Moldova's President Vladimir Voronin, who obtained Moscow's support after a failure of the Moldovan-Trans-Dniestrian dialogue. The story comments on results of the meeting.

The government Tuesday issued a decree concerning the competition procedure of placing state assignments on training specialists with a higher professional education. According to the document, starting 2003, the budget money will be allocated only to those higher schools that successfully passed the competition for the right to train specialists in specialties ordered by the government. The story reveals the essence of the document.

Tax Minister Gennady Bukayev has made several appointments in his agency. The story presents new names.

Grigory Malyuk, Director-General of the Kharkov Tank -Building Plant, was fired on Tuesday.

The Supreme Court Tuesday made the judgement that may lead to a revision of the results of the gubernatorial elections in the Nizhny Novgorod region.

The Chelyabinsk Regional Arbitration Court Tuesday ruled in regional prosecutor Anatoly Bragin's favour in his suit on liquidation of the Karabash Copper-Smelting Combine.

The Aeroflot conciliatory commission Tuesday held its first session aimed at settling down a labor dispute between the labor union of aviation specialists and the Aeroflot administration. The story describes positive results of the session.

Stock market participants on Tuesday discussed the information saying that the Tyumen Oil Company (TNK) had sold its shares in enterprises with another shareholder being "Slavneft" to structures affiliated with Slavneft head Mikhail Gutseriyev. The story examines Slavneft's activities.

The Transneft shareholders' extraordinary meeting Tuesday made the decision to pay out dividends for 2000 to the tune of 1.6 billion rubles. The story comments on the decision, noting that if the dividends were not paid, the state could lose 25 percent of the company's stock.

The "ONAKO" shareholders Tuesday held a meeting that decided to conduct an additional issuance of shares, which will allow the company to double its charter capital. The story examines other decisions of the meeting.

The 2nd International Conference "Prospects of Boosting Multi-Media Satellite Communications and Transmission in Russia and CIS Countries" that ended in Dubna on Tuesday made public plans of renewing the Russian group of satellite communications and transmission in Russia and CIS countries. The plans envisage in 2001-2005 to create and launch into orbit 7 communications satellites of the Express-A series.

The "Avangard" Bank Board of Directors has made the decision to close a bank affiliate in Krasnoyarsk.

Domestic cellular companies this year are expanding their business in regions. The story discloses plans of several such companies. In an interview "Mobile Telesystems" Vice-President Alexei Buyanov reveals his company's plans.

The Russian Institute "Open Society" (Soros Foundation) has suspended its financial aid to popular Russian emigrant newspaper "Russkaya Mysl" published in Paris.

A shark near the seaside of North Carolina has attacked a Russian man and woman (no names are given). The man has died because of serious injuries and the woman has managed to survive.

A Congress in support of reading will be held in Moscow on Sept. 7. The event has been sponsored by the Association of Book Publishers of Russia, the International Union of Book-Lovers, the Union of Russian Journalists, the Moscow Writers' Union and other public organizations. The story features the event and its participants.


President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree on the creation of the Single Tariff Body. According to the document, the duties of regulating the tariffs of all natural monopolies are transferred to the Federal Energy Commission, the staff of which in the next two or three years is expected to double to 300 people. The article examines the document.

Alfa-Bank has lost several employees in its competitive struggle with MDM-Bank. The article lists several names.

The first step has been taken to create a monopoly on the domestic film market: the recently created state-owned Roskinoprokat company has come to an agreement with two private networks of movie theaters ? Karo and Cinema Empire ? to create the first domestic multiplex, a 7-hall movie theater. The article examines the project.

According to reports from the State Customs Committee, Russia's foreign trade turnover in January-July this year was up 9 percent, reaching $81.7 billion. The brief gives several other positive figures on foreign trade.

The cost of a minimal collection of foodstuffs in August was up 3.6 percent as compared with the figure for the same period last year. Its price was 851.5 rubles per month. The brief states the prices in different cities.

Though the State Statistics Committee stated inflation in August as zero, experts predict that annual inflation of about 20 percent is probably inevitable. The article examines factors underlying their prognosis.

What role will the euro play in the domestic economy? Three experts share their views on the issue.

Russian and Chinese bureaucrats, starting today and lasting until the end of this week , will try to obtain maximum dividends from good bilateral political relations. The Russian government hopes to offer China energy and aluminum projects and also to resume cooperation in civil aviation. The article examines several promising projects.

Deputy Prime Minister Ilya Klebanov reported to the military-industrial complex enterprises (and let President Vladimir Putin down) Tuesday when he said that the state will not be able to pay debts to them by Oct. 1 (as the president had promised).

In early June the PIK companies group announced a purchase of the controlling interest of stock of the Moscow House-Building Combine DSK-2. In an interview, PIK group head Kirill Pisarev explains the aim of the purchase.

Vedomosti. Companies and Markets

The Transneft shareholders' extraordinary meeting decided to pay out dividends on the basis of last year's results. This is good news for private companies possessing privileged stock of the state, which will receive more than 1 billion rubles ($34,014,000).

Norilsk Nickel plans to begin to sell precious metals on cellular (short-term) contracts in mid-September. This was stated by general director Yury Kotlyar, who revealed the company's plans.

The publication of the Unified Energy Systems company's results for 2000, according to the international standard, has brought sensational news ? for the first time in its existence, the company has gained pure profit. The article examines how analysts assess its results.

The American oil and gas company Devon Energy has announced its purchase of the Canadian gas-extracting company Anderson Exploration for $3.4 billion. As a result of the deal, Devon will become one of the largest companies in North America working in the oil-extracting sector.

The repeal of international tariffs on railway transportation begins to bear fruit to Russian ports. Part of cargo flows from Ukrainian and Baltic ports has passed over to Russian ones, which is good for port administrations and the Transportation Ministry but bad for the Railways Ministry.

The Yurfin Group 2000 company Tuesday accused large shareholders of the bankrupt Menatep bank of diverting promised payments away from the bank's minority shareholders, who are clients of the company.

Bids for the auction to sell 9 percent of stock of Rosgosstrakh are no longer accepted. The insuring ROSNO and Interros-Soglasiye companies have not submitted their bids, but the auction should take place ? three other companies are claiming the shares.

The Committee of Municipal Loans and Development of the Moscow Stock Market has sent an inquiry to the Central Bank for receiving a license to draw an external credit. The 300 million-euro credit will be given to Moscow by the BHF Bank AG for three years.

Noviye Izvestia

The Moscow Interior (Police) Department Tuesday reported about several unusual thefts in the city. The brief mentions them all.

A draft decree on imposing the state of emergency in the region will be submitted to Saratov regional governor Dmitry Ayatskov for signing. The measure has been caused by an alarming situation with the grain harvest.

A reanimating Congress of the Democratic Party of Russia is scheduled for Sept. 25 in Moscow. President Vladimir Putin is expected to send a congratulatory message to the Congress. Novgorod governor Mikhail Prusak has officially agreed to become the leader of the Party. The story describes its current state, its active members and the agenda of the congress.

Several Muscovites answer the following question: Do you believe that the government can make us all exchange hard currency in cash for cheques?

Moskovskiye Novosti

The Ulyanovsk region placed big hopes on general Vladimir Shamanov nine months ago when he was elected governor, but up to now the region has failed to see any improvements. Tough methods the general used in Chechnya have not yielded any positive results in a civilian life. In an interview, the present and former governors ? Vladimir Shamanov and Yury Goryachev ? explain why the region is not prepared for the next winter.

The newspaper reprints a letter by Emperor Nicholas II to Education Minister Pyotr Vannovsky 11 months after the minister took over the post. Vannovsky headed a group of educators, who drafted a school reform, with its major point being a longer duration of schooling. The similar situation, and the style and tact of the emperor make this letter interesting today.

A story examines several latest political steps taken by Mayor Yury Luzkov, who has made it clear that he is the master of ceremony in Moscow.

An old architectural monument has been demolished in the center of Moscow on Ulitsa Plyushchikha where an elite apartment block will be built. The Moscow Architecture Committee is opposing the project but with no result.

Five construction companies are taking part in the tender on the right to make a major renovation of the president's future marine residence in Strelnya outside St. Petersburg. (Moskovskiye Novosti, No 36, 6)

Federal authorities believe that tangible successes in reviving the Chechen economy will bring peace to the republic. The story describes the present complicated situation there, showing that not everything is so simple as it seems.

One often feels sad when a state top official begins to speak about drawing foreigners' investments to the Russian economy. Such investors' future and the further fate of the enterprise with foreign investments also cause sadness. The investor often is unable to save even a small part of his or her money, not to speak of profits. The "Kauchuk" Plant in Moscow may be a good example of all this. The story features its sad fate.

Former Communist Party leader and head of state Nikita Khrushchev died 30 years ago ? in early September 1971. The story describes his last days and how he was buried.

The 80-year-old history of the Russian Orthodox Church abroad (RPTSZ) is coming to an end. The July session of the RPTSZ Holy Synod actually summed up results of the 80-year-old history of this church formation created by the White Guards emigrants during the Civil War. The Synod made a juridically controversial decision to fire the RPTSZ first very old hierach Vitaly (Ustinov) Many clergymen abroad view him as a live link of RPTSZ with the pre-revolutionary Russia.

Another story describes photo reporter Svetlana Ivanova's photo display "The Echo ? the Smooth World" that has opened in the Moscow Photo House. Svetlana has come from Los Angeles to open her display. The story describes several interesting works.

The family of Yevgeny Meshchersky, a direct descendant of the Meshchersky grand princes, who left Russia after the revolution, is being evicted from their family estate in the Alabino village outside Moscow.

Argumenty i Fakty

A leading story features media-tycoon Boris Berezovsky's plans to create the political opposition to the president in regions.

Russia and Japan are likely to be on the threshold of significant political decisions to decide their further relationships. Japan's Ambassador to Russia Minoru Tamba, who was born on Sakhalin, says what should be done to resolve the complicated issue of the South Kuril Islands.

Domestic oil companies for the first time over the past 15 years have begun to make investments in the oil sector. Oil extraction in 2000 was up 9 percent and reached 29 million tons a month.

The UN last week published a rating of life quality in 162 countries. Two years ago Russia occupied 71st place, today it is the 55th one. The story examines other results of the rating.

Residents in Votkinsk, Udmurtia, intend to stage a strike protesting against plans of the American "Lokheed Martin" company to build a complex near their place for utilizing nuclear waste. The story examines an unfavorable social and ecological situation in the city.

The first section of the British-Russian School is to open in Moscow on Nov. 1. In an interview, its Director-General Mikhail Gerchikov says who can be enrolled in his school and what the tuition fee is. Moskva Supplement.

Rossiiskaya Gazeta

In an interview, external manager of "Rospan" Mikhail Rubtsov says what the company's shareholders propose to lead out the company of the bankruptcy state.

In an interview, Federation Council member Alexander Uss, head of the Legislative Assembly of the Krasnoyarsk region, examines the economic situation in Siberia and in the Krasnoyarsk region, focusing on their major problems and difficulties.

Sanitary demands for the Protection of Underground Waters from Pollution is fully documented by the Health Ministry.

Komomolskaya Pravda

A story reflects on what may happen to the bulls after Mayor Yury Luzhkov banned the Portuguese bullfight shows in the city.

In an interview on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of Uzbekistan's 10th anniversary of independence, Ambassador Shokasym Shoislamov, speaks about radical changes in his country over this period.