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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

News in Brief

Court Still Headed North

A bill moving the Constitutional Court to St. Petersburg from Moscow cleared a third reading Wednesday in the State Duma. Now the bill must get Federation Council's approval and President Vladimir Putin's signature to become law.

The original draft of the bill provided for the court to be relocated to St. Petersburg full time, but deputies introduced an amendment earlier this month that would allow the court to maintain a branch office in Moscow and hold sessions in the capital. (MT)

Own Bomb Kills Student

A medical student died in the city of Nalchik from wounds he suffered after a bomb he was assembling detonated, police reported Wednesday.

The 19-year-old, first-year student at the Kabardino-Balkaria State University was putting the bomb together in his apartment Tuesday when the device exploded, police told Interfax.

The explosion took place around 5:30 p.m., rocking the apartment building, police said. No one else suffered injuries in the blast. (MT)

Kyrgyz Parliament Meets

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan -- Kyrgyzstan's parliament convened for a special closed-door meeting Wednesday, one day after the government resigned.

The resignation was a technical procedure needed to enforce a new constitution that was adopted after opposition protests in November. Tensions could be sparked in the country when the parliament, packed with opponents of President Kurmanbek Bakiyev, starts discussing the formation of a new government, officials said.

The West is closely watching developments in the Central Asian country, which has been unstable since Bakiyev came to power last year after a coup toppled long-serving predecessor Askar Akayev. The country is home to a U.S. military base. (Reuters)

Rock Slide Kills Geologists

Four geologists were killed in a massive rock slide in the Russian Far East on Wednesday, an Emergency Situations Ministry spokesman said, adding that one body trapped under rubble and ice had not yet been recovered.

The workers died in a region near the Chinese border when several tons of rock slid down. Three bodies were pulled out, but the body of the fourth worker remained under the rubble.

"The rescuers can see his legs sticking out from under the rubble. But he is frozen solid with ice," Viktor Beltsov said, adding that the local temperature had dipped to minus 20 Celsius. (Reuters)

Karpenko Convicted

Viktor Karpenko, a former local official in the Krasnodar Region, was convicted of terrorism Wednesday for faking an attempt on his own life, Interfax reported.

The regional court that found Karpenko guilty added that there were "no grounds for leniency." The judge presiding over the case must now sentence Karpenko, a former administration head.

In April 2006, a grenade exploded in Karpenko's apartment -- shortly after the second round of elections for the post of local administration chief. Karpenko blamed the attack on others, but a subsequent investigation showed he had organized it. (MT)

No Tourism for Debtors

Court officials in St. Petersburg are looking to block people who have repeatedly failed to pay back loans from traveling outside the country, Kommersant reported Wednesday.

Artur Parfenchikov, St. Petersburg's chief court marshal, said Tuesday that the city's branch of the Federal Court Marshals Service has asked border guards to block longtime debtors from leaving Russia until they pay up. (MT)