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Press Review

IZVESTIA (27/10/2005)

Russian citizen (of the North Ossetian origin) Vitaly Kaloyev, whom the Swiss Court on Wednesday found guilty of the premeditated killing of an air traffic controller, sentenced him to 8 years in prison. The story comments on the court' s ruling. Is the verdict fair? Eleven authoritative lawyers, doctors and public figures share their views. (1, 3, 7, Kommersant, 1, 4, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 1, 2, Vremya Novostei, 1, Gazeta, 1, 8, 9, Noviye Izvestia, 6, Komsomolskaya Pravda, 3, MK, 1, 3)

In an interview North Ossetia' s President Taimuraz Mamsurov, who arrived in Zurich on a private visit, shares his impressions about the trial of Vitaly Kaloyev, focusing on what he expected from the Swiss court. (3, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 7)

Famed theatrical and cinema actor Nikolai Karachentsev today is celebrating his 61st birthday. In an interview outstanding actress Inna Churikova talks about this talented actor. (1, Komsomolskaya Pravda, 5, MK, 3)

The ruble in the next three years will become almost unchanged remaining at the level of 28. 5-28. 7 rubles per dollar. Such a promise was given at a gvt ministers' meeting with the president in the Kremlin on Wednesday by Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin. He also spoke about inflation, calling it a main evil for the economy. The story comments on Kudrin' s statement. (1, 2, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 5, Gazeta, 17, 19, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 3, Komsomolskaya Pravda, 2, MK, 1)

The Moody' s rating agency has raised the ceiling of the rating for Russian bonds in foreign currency, and also the rating of the state bonds of the Russian Federation in rubles and foreign currency from Baa3 up to Baa2. Brief. (2, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 5, Gazeta, 17)

The prime ministers of the Shanghai Organization of Cooperation (SHOS) got together in the Kremlin on Wednesday for a meeting presided by President Putin. After India, Iran, Mongolia and Pakistan were granted the status of observer, their representatives were also present. The story describes the meeting, focusing on issues its discussed. (2, Kommersant, 2, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 3, Vremya Novostei, 1, Gazeta, 6, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 1, 3)

Washington officials are continuing to discuss the scandal linked with a summons to court that was served in Washington on Tuesday to Russian Industry and Energy Minister Viktor Khristenko. In an interview Covington & Burling lawyer Thomas Johnson (Sp. ?) representing the interests of Yukos shareholders, talks about the upcoming court hearings. (2, Vremya Novostei, 8, Gazeta, 2, 3, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 3, MK, 2)

In an interview lawyer Mikhail Barshchevsky, a gvt representative in higher courts, shares his view about the suit against the Russian gvt filed by American Yukos shareholders. (2)

Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Zhukov at a closed-doors gvt session on Wednesday proposed to preserve the foreign producers' right to stick excise marks abroad. The corresponding amendments to the law on alcohol turnover will be submitted to the State Duma in the next two months. The story reveals the essence of Zhukov' s proposal. (2)

Interior Minister Rashid Nurgaliyev at a meeting with heads of the city and district interior departments in the Kurgan region on Wednesday made several sensational statements. Thus, he reported that in one year (2005) alone policemen have committed 30, 000 offences, which is by 40 percent more than the figure for 2004. (3, Vremya Novostei, 2, Vremya Novostei, 1, 2)

The story describes the first snow in Moscow on Wednesday, saying how city authorities prepared for it beforehand. (3, Gazeta, 7, Vremya Novostei, 3, Noviye Izvestia, 7, Komsomolskaya Pravda, 4)

The story comments on results of the latest poll taken by the Public Opinion Fund that shows how the quality composition President Putin' s electors has changed. A graph. (4)

Turkmenistan today is marking its Independence Day. The story examines presents to President Saparmurat Niyazov from his people and foreign guests, focusing on his presents to his people. (4)

Imposing a 100 percent payment for housing and utilities has given birth to a new profession --a bill collector. The first group of such bill collectors has appeared in the Kaliningrad region. The story describes their methods of doing this job. (4, 6)

The story features the first days of convict Platon Lebedev in a labour colony in the Kharp village in the Yamalo -Nenets Autonomous Area. The appearance of oligarch in the colony has caused interest from local criminal circles, and several reputed mobsters will seek to enjoy Lebedev' s favour. (1, 8, Kommersant, 5)

The Federal Tourism Agency (Rosturism) on Nov. 18 will mark his first anniversary. In an interview its head Vladimir Strzhalkovsky talks about the situation on the domestic tourism market, focusing on its serious problems. (1, 9)

Viktor Zabelin, President of the Union of Builders, and Rosstroi head Sergei Kruglik, at a news conference on Wednesday tried to answer journalists' question --is the construction industry able to double the number of square meters of housing by 2010? (9)

KOMMERSANT (27/10/2005)

Andrei Klepach, head of the Macroeconomic Forecast Department of the Economic Development Ministry, stated on Wednesday that inflation this year may exceed 11 percent, but it should be less than last year' s 11. 7 percent. This plan, too, will be difficult to fulfill. Under present conditions authorities are trying to find new methods of cracking down on soaring prices : President Putin on Wednesday held the second in three days anti-inflation session. The story examines urgent inflation issues it discussed, focusing on the president' s statements and instructions. (1, 14)

Presidential economic adviser Andrei Illarionov on Wednesday presented his own plan aimed at cracking down on growing inflation. The story reveals its essence. (1)

The Standard & Poor' s international rating agency on Wednesday made public its study of the transparency of Russian banks. The story examines the study, focusing on its disturbing conclusions. (1, 14)

The USA, Britain and France on Wednesday submitted to the UN Security Council a draft resolution on imposing sanctions against Syria. Russia' s Foreign Ministry stated that Moscow is opposing it. . The story examines what stands behind the proposed sanctions, focusing on Moscow' s stand on the issue. (1, 9)

The Federation Council Commission on the Analysis of the situation in the North Caucasus held a session on Wednesday devoted to the recent events in Nalchik. The most heated discussion developed around data on the number of victims of the terrorist act, in connection with which Senators decided to draft amendments to the Criminal-Procedural Code that would clearly say how to distinguish killed militants from the perished civilians. (2, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 2)

The Central Committee of the Party of Pensioners (RPP) in Moscow on Wednesday held a session that made a decision to transfer the date of the party congress from Nov. 12 to Dec. 17. The story comments on the decision, saying who voted for it. (3)

The Supreme Court on Wednesday failed to rule in favour of State Duma Deputy Gennady Seleznyov, who contested the State Duma' s decision to discharge him from the post of deputy co-chairman of the inter-parliamentary group. The story comments on the court' s ruling. (3)

Tatarstan' s Supreme Court on Wednesday delivered a verdict in the case of 16 participants and ringleaders of one of the largest organized crime groups in Russia -- Zhilka. Its members are accused of numerous killings and other gave crimes that they committed in many regions. The story decribes their case and the verdict. (4)

Leading domestic charity funds on Wednesday came up with an initiative to declare 2006 the Charity Year. President Putin, too, intends to make the same proposal on Nov. 4, the Day of People' s Unity. The story reveals the essence of the initiatives, saying what they mean. (6)

A disputed situation developed on Wednesday around the project of transforming the Youth Unity into a new organization Molodaya Gvardia. As it has tuned out, the youth movement under such a name was already registered in St. Petersburg in 2001. Its organizers stated that they were willing to uphold this brand in court. (56)

The Moscow City Duma on Wednesday passed amendments to the city laws considerably raising taxes for the gambling business. The story examines several amendments, saying how market participants regard them (6)

About a thousand war and military service veterans in Moscow on Wednesday staged a protest against the monetarization of their social welfare benefits. They demanded that the gvt and the president give them back to them. The story describes the protest, its participants and their demands. (7)

The Vatican' s Foreign Minister Jovanni Laiolo (Sp. ?) arrived in Moscow on Wednesday This is the first visit in history of the Vatican' s Foreign Minister to Russia. The story describes the aim of the visit, focusing on its main intrigue. (10)

The National Reserve Corporation (NRK) managing the assets of the National Reserve Bank of State Duma deputy Alexander Lebedev on Wednesday announced a sale of its 3 percent of shares in the Unified Energy Systems (UES) company. The sum of the deal is about $400 million. The story examines how Lebedev explained his intention. (13)

Dmitry Bartenev, President of the leading domestic advertising holding --Starcom MediaVest Group-- is moving to News Outdoor Group. The story comments on his decision, focusing on his major task at the new place of work. (13)

The net profit of domestic independent gas producer NOVATEK by RSBU in July-September went down by 32. 5 percent -- to3. 916 billion rubles from 5. 811 billion. Brief. (13)

The Siemens AG leadership and the Elektrozavod company on Wednesday stated that before Dec. 15 they will launch a joint venture on the parity basis. The brief says what they will produce. (13)

UES Financial Director Sergei Dubinin stated that the company' s Board of Directors on Friday will discuss an issue on borrowing a credit to buy 22. 43 percent of shares of Siloviye Mashiny (Power Machines) . Brief. (13)

VEDOMOSTI (28/10//2005)

A widely-advertised cancelation of the plan for tax collection has turned out to be a fiction. Tax inspectors, who have failed to meet the plan, have been left without bonuses, despite Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin' s promises and priorities singled out by the president. How do state officials explain all this? (A1)

Another woman has been added to the list of entrepreneurs' abandoned wives-- this time it is Lydia Isaikina, former wife of entrepreneur Alexei Isaikin, President of the Volga-Dnepr company. The story says that she claims a large part of his property. (A1)

Moody' s Investors Service Agency has raised Russia' s rating up to Baa2. The story comments on the rating, saying that now it will depend on the efficacy of state governance rather than on oil dollars. A1)

The return of property confiscation is being discussed now in connection with the fact that Russia has signed the Council of Europe and UN Convention concerning the struggle against corruption, transnational organized crime and terrorism. The story comments on the issue saying what state officials are supporting the return. (A1, A4)

British experts have noted two new tendencies in Russian military building: expanding ties with China and the beginning of the rearming of the Armed Forces. The story looks at what extent British experts are correct. (A2)

A tender was announced on Wednesday for the leader of the Party of Pensioners (RPP) . Neither ex-leader Valery Gartung nor Sergei Atroshenko restored in this capacity as candidates are not considered. It' s not concluded that the post will be offered to Federation Council Speaker Sergei Mironov. (A2)

Syria' s role in the murder of Hariri is unclear, but the USA, Britain and France are willing to impose economic sanctions against it. Experts say that sanctions will make the situation in the whole of the Middle East still more complicated. (A2)

The Industry and Energy Ministry has drafted the second version of the bill restricting foreign investors' access to the strategic economic sectors. Officials have acknowledged 40 types of activities as strategic, . and in order to take them up in Russia, foreigners will have to pass through a three -level procedure of agreement. The story looks at them in detail. (A3)

In an interview Yury Tskhovrebov, head of the Board of Directors of the Kapital insurance group, talks about his profit-making company revealing its business plans up to 2010. (A5)


State Duma deputy Alexander Lebedev has gotten rid at last from the shares of UES that he had possessed for the whole 8 years. The National Reserve Corporation for 3 percent of shares that belonged to him could earn up to $500 million. Lebedev promised to spend this money on new projects, particularly on boosting the mortgage system. (B1 )

The gas filling stations network under the Epetrol brand may join the domestic companies working on the stock market. The company was created two years ago. and intends in a year to sell about 20 percent of shares on the London Stock Exchange. (B1)

The Stroiincom-K company controlled by famous diamanter Lev Levayev can use at last its developing abilities in the Moscow region. The company has completed the construction of several elite apartment blocks in the center of Moscow and received a land plot in Moskva-City. The next construction site will be the construction of many apartment blocks in Odintsovo. (B1)

The Volga-Dnepr aviation company and Boeing today are expected to sign a protocol on intentions concerning their future cooperation. Brief. (B1)

The Complex Energy Systems (KES) plans to hold IPO in 2008- 2009. This was reported by the KES Press Service. Brief. (B1)

The Arkhangelsk Pulp and Paper Combine (ATSBK) has consolidated the controlling stake of its exclusive trader Arkhbum, having bought 34. 5 percent of shares. This was stated in the ATSBK press-release. Brief. (B1)

The Amtel-Vredestein N. V. will launch a road show of the primary placing of its shares (IPO) on Oct. 31, 2005. This was stated by an investment source. Brief. (B1)

The Unified Energy Systems (UES) company will buy from Interros 22 percent of shares of Siloviye Mashiny (Power Machines) on money given by Vneshtorgbank. The latter is willing to open a 3. 5 billion ruble credit line to UES. . The story says how experts regard all this. (B2)


Federation Council Vice Speaker Alexander Torshin, head of the State Commission investigating the Beslan tragedy in North Ossetia in September 2004, stated that his commission will complete its investigation by the New Year. In an interview he talks about its preliminary results, focusing on why Beslan mothers dislike the commission' s job. (1, 2)

Constitutional Court Chairman Valery Zorkin early this week stated about the need to restore the institution of property confiscation from convicts guilty of grave crimes. The story reveals the essence of his statement. (1. 2)

Presidential envoy to the Siberian Federal District Anatoly Kvashnin stated that five candidates (their names are given) are claiming the post of governor of the Republic of Altai, where the gubernatorial elections are scheduled for Dec. 4. The story examines the candidates, saying who are lobbying each of them. (1, 4)

Yaroslavl Communists lately have held several sanctioned rallies protesting against removing Lenin from the Mausoleum and burying him. .The KPRF leaders in the Yaroslavl region have called on Communists to be ready to go to Moscow to defend Lenin there if the gvt takes active measures to bury Lenin. The story describes the Communists' actions. (4)

The OSCE Foreign Ministers session in Vienna today is expected to discuss Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili' s plan for a peaceful settlement of the Georgian-Ossetian conflict. The story reveals the essence of this plan, focusing on its anti-Russian trend. (5)

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Wednesday launched his Middle East tour, and the firsts place of his destination became Israel. He arrived there for negotiations with its leadership that asked the Russian minister not to sell weapons to Syria. The story examines the aims of Lavrov' s visit to Israel. (5)


Russia' s investment in the USA this year have exceeded $1 billion -- this is what Industry and Energy Minister Viktor Khristenko told to US President George W. Bush during their Wednesday' s meeting in Washington. The story features the meeting, focusing on issues they discussed. (1, 3)

In an interview Pakistan' s Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz, who took part in the session of the Shanghai Organization of Cooperation, talks about the expediency of Pakistani- Russian military-technical cooperation. (1, 2)

The recent killing of a Peruvian student in Voronezh caused many discussions concerning the position of non-Russians in Russia. A roundtable of experts (their names and posts are given) in Moscow on Wednesday tried to find answers to the following questions -- Does racism exist in Russia? Why did this killing take place exactly in Voronezh? Who are these killers? Should the city of Voronezh repent? What is awaiting the Russian market of educational services? (1, 15)

NOVIYE IZVESTIA (27/10/2005)

According to the new Housing Code, all tenants up to March 1, 2006 should select a private company or their district administration that will be responsible for the state of their houses. The story examines several provisions of this new Housing Code, to make them clear to tenants, who have no idea what to choose. (1, 3)

An exhibition of human bodies mummified according to the method of notorious Guenter von Hagens (Sp. ?) (or Doctor Death) that has been shown in Saratov this week has caused a big scandal. The story describes reasons behind the scandal, saying that after Saratov the exhibition will travel to other cities. (1, 6)

Azeri authorities take all possible measures not to allow a coup d ' etat in the country, that as the Prosecutor General' s Office and the Interior Ministry believe, is being prepared by the opposition. Despite a tense political situation in the republic, ex-Speaker of the Azeri parliament Rasul Guliyev, leader of the Democratic Party of Azerbaijan, whose plane was not allowed to land in Baku Airport on Oct. 17, stated that he intends to come back to his native Azerbaijan not long before the parliamentary elections scheduled for Nov. 6 In an interview he reveals his political plans. (1, 4)

Ombudsman Vladimir Lukin on Wednesday promised to find out whether the human rights of convicts Mikhail Khodorkovsky and Platon Lebedev have been violated-- this is how he has reacted to a public appeal, and Lukin has made this statement in Strasbourg before his meeting with the leadership of the Council of Europe. The story examines the public appeal to Lukin. , saying that its author hope that the ombudsman will tell the truth to President Putin. Two politicians say why they have signed the appeal. (2)

The story comments on the presidential social priority initiatives, saying what should be needed to put their implementation on a fast track. (2)

Many things should be changed in the country in order to implement one of the four presidential national projects -- Affordable and Comfortable Housing. The story examines what concretely should be changed. (3)

First Deputy Interior Minister Alexander Chekalin and Moscow metro chief Dmitry Gayev on Wednesday arranged an excursion for G-8 18 transport security experts. The foreign guests were shown super-modern security and anti-terrorist equipment mounted in the metro. The story describes the excursion and what the guests saw. In a short interview an American guest (his name and post are given) shares his good impressions. (7)


The Spanish Embassy in Moscow has temporarily suspended to issue entry visas. The story says why. (1)

In an interview Valery Okulov, Director-General of Aeroflot, talks about his company, explaining why it prefers to use foreign planes. The focus is on his business plans. (5)