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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

News in Brief

Berezovsky Poison Plot

MOSCOW (MT) -- Russian secret service agents planned to kill Boris Berezovsky in Britain, according to a report in The Sunday Times, reported.

Quoting a source in the British intelligence agency MI5, The Sunday Times said an agent in the Foreign Intelligence Service, or SVR, had been set to arrive in Britain and kill Berezovsky.

Berezovsky, who received political asylum in Britain two weeks ago despite Russian attempts to extradite him, was to have been poisoned with a James Bond-style device made up of a disguised cigarette lighter and a fountain pen, the newspaper reported.

Poison hidden in the lighter would have been injected into Berezovsky via a needle hidden inside the pen.

SVR spokesman Boris Labusov described the report as "rubbish," Interfax reported.

"We consider it impossible to even comment on these insane allegations," Labusov said Sunday.

Iraq, Chechnya Protests

MOSCOW (AP) -- Hundreds of people turned out in Moscow on Saturday for separate protests against the U.S. war and occupation of Iraq and Russia's war in Chechnya, carrying banners and chanting slogans.

About 300 mostly young people attended a protest outside the U.S. Embassy, criticizing the U.S.-led war earlier this year and calling for American forces to leave Iraq.

One banner read, "Iraq -- Blood -- Oil -- Bush," and a member of the nationalist Liberal Democratic Party of Russia spoke, according to organizers, who put the number of demonstrators at 5,000.

Outside FSB headquarters, a crowd that witnesses said was about the same size protested against the war in Chechnya. Organizers said 3,000 people attended the rally.

ATN Journalist Beaten

MOSCOW (AP) -- Unidentified assailants beat up a television journalist near her home in Yekaterinburg in the third attack on a journalist from the same station in the Ural Mountains city in recent months, Interfax reported Friday.

Two young men knocked editor and program host Ksenia Kartseva down when she was returning from work at the private ATN television company late Thursday.

They kicked Kartseva and left her suffering from a concussion, Interfax reported.

A senior cameraman at ATN was attacked just a day earlier, and its director was beaten up in May, Interfax reported.

For the Record

The North Caucasus Military Court on Friday gave Yury Budanov 10 days to appeal his conviction in the 2000 killing of Elza Kungayeva, 18, after he missed the deadline, saying he was depressed about the verdict. (AP)

President Vladimir Putin said Saturday that he would like Pope John Paul II to visit Russia but that a full-fledged papal visit could not take place until he had the agreement of the Russian Orthodox Church, which has opposed such a trip. (AP)

Thousands of people held a ceremony at Gizel, North Ossetia, on Saturday at the site where a glacier crashed down a mountain a year ago, honoring the 125 people buried in the avalanche of ice and mud. (AP)