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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016


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A Chestnut Revolution

After Georgia's bloodless ""Rose Revolution"" in December, we can only hope Kiev will host the chestnut (in full bloom each spring in the leafy capital) variety. Ukraine offers the best chance to build on the Georgian success in popular democracy -- as long as the West and the democratic opposition play their cards right.

The President's Constitutional Schizophrenia

President Vladimir Putin's position on the issue of amending the Constitution to extend the presidential term of office is becoming somewhat schizophrenic.

Is the Owner in Charge -- Who's Boss?

X????? and his female counterpart, ???????, are words that make the translator sigh and reach for the thesaurus -- along with a long swig of vodka. Sometimes it's just a question of getting the context right, and then the appropriate English word is easy to find.

Press Review

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

Business in Brief

Gas Cut to Belarus MOSCOW (Bloomberg) -- Gazprom reduced natural gas supplies to Belarus by 30 percent as of 10 a.m. Thursday after the former Soviet state failed to agree on new contracts, Interfax reported, citing an unidentified company official. Gazprom may cut off supplies entirely if Belarus does not sign new contracts, the news service said. Itera and Transnafta informed Gazprom that they have completed contracted deliveries to Belarus for this month, Interfax reported. Gazprom, Europe's biggest natural gas supplier, wants to raise the price Belarus pays for gas by 56 percent to $50 per 1,000 cubic meters. The producer, which ships about 15 percent of its gas exports to Europe through pipelines across Belarus, has said the dispute may disrupt deliveries of the fuel to Germany and Poland.

Luxury Retailer Snaps Up GUM

GUM, the tsarist-era trade arcade on Red Square that became the public mirage of Soviet consumerism in the 1970s, has a new owner.

No Individual Menatep Owners Left

Yukos co-founder Leonid Nevzlin said Thursday that there were no longer any individual shareholders in Group Menatep, the holding company that controls Yukos, Interfax reported.

Greenspan Pushes RTS Toward All-Time High

The RTS, the nation's benchmark stock index, gained 2.2 percent Thursday to move within a few points of its all-time high.

Transneft Pipeline May Take 9 Years

Crude oil pipeline monopoly, may need six to nine years to build a pipeline to pump Siberian oil to the Pacific coast for shipment to Asian customers such as Japan.

News in Brief

Bomb Toll Rises to 41 The death toll in last week's metro bombing reached 41 Thursday, as prosecutors said that identification documents for missing people had been found in the charred train wreckage. Authorities previously had confirmed 39 people were killed, with 38 of them identified. But Deputy City Prosecutor Vladimir Yudin said identification documents for three missing people were found, local media reported. One of those was presumed to be the previously known, but unidentified, victim. Yudin said genetic tests would be conducted to confirm the identities, Interfax and Itar-Tass reported. Yudin said prosecutors have received appeals from relatives of another three people who had disappeared and could have been in the subway car hit by the explosion. The authorities have not yet found any evidence that they were on the train, Yudin said. Mayor Yury Luzhkov has said earlier this week that the death toll could reach 50 when all remains are identified. U.S.

Putin Kicks Off Re-election Drive

President Vladimir Putin kicked off his re-election campaign Thursday with a speech to supporters in which he laid out the achievements of his first term and plans for his all-but-assured second -- and made an unexpected promise to pick a successor.

Challengers Refuse to Debate

Four candidates challenging President Vladimir Putin in March's election refused to debate each other in the campaign's first television debate Thursday, protesting Putin's absence.

Learning to Cope With a Falling Buck

As the dollar fell steadily throughout the summer and fall of 2003, Patrick's employees began to clamor for a change.

Fischer Takes Issue With Putin

German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer said he and the Kremlin disagreed on an array of issues during talks Thursday with President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov.

Moscow Mulls New Migration Laws

People living or working in Moscow, but not registered in the city, face a raft of new measures from City Hall aimed against illegal migration, including fingerprinting, Kommersant reported Thursday.

Rumyantsev: Iran Fuel Deal Is Close

The Nuclear Power Ministry said Thursday that it plans to sign a deal with Iran next month to ship nuclear fuel for the $800 million Russian-built Bushehr power plant, defying U.S. pressure to sever nuclear ties with the country.

Cop Jailed for Aiding Hostage-Taker

A city court on Thursday convicted a police officer of illegally registering a woman who participated in the Chechen hostage-taking raid on the Dubrovka theater in October 2002.
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