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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

News in Brief

Explosion Kills One in Altai

An explosion killed a man at a military research center in the Altai region Monday, national media reported.

Interfax quoted regional emergencies officials as saying the explosion destroyed part of the research center in the town of Biisk and killed a senior worker.

It was unclear what had caused the blast. which occurred when researchers were testing new equipment. (Reuters)

Gambling Halls Wrecked

More than 100 people wielding baseball bats and metal bars smashed dozens of slot machines and wrecked 10 gambling halls Monday evening in Maikop, the capital city of Adygeya, the regional Interior Ministry said.

Police arrested 12 people for allegedly instigating the violence.

Groups of people, between the ages of 20 and 25, traveled to several districts in the city in unmarked cars and on foot and smashed slot machines, destroyed electronic gambling games and ransacked halls over the course of an hour.

The ministry said damage totaled 10 million rubles ($381,000). (AP)

Extremism Bill Gets Backing

The State Duma's Constitution and State Affairs Committee on Monday recommended that the lower house pass an amendment to election laws that supporters say would help the government to fight extremism, Interfax reported.

The bill would ban people convicted of crimes of a serious or extremist nature from running for public office. It would also rule out anyone convicted of propagating the ideas of Nazism or publicly displaying Nazi symbols. (MT)

Kulov Calls for Protests

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan -- Former Kyrgyz Prime Minister Felix Kulov called Monday for peaceful protests against President Kurmanbek Bakiyev and refused to rule out a presidential bid if early elections were held.

Kulov, who was sprung from jail to form a partnership with Bakiyev after violent protests in 2005 that ousted long-serving leader Askar Akayev, now accuses the government in which he served of corruption.

Kyrgyzstan is not due to hold parliamentary or presidential elections until 2010. Kulov said he and his United Front for a Decent Future for Kyrgyzstan would use constitutional means to bring about early elections. (Reuters)

2 Workers' Bodies Recovered

Rescue workers Monday found the bodies of two construction workers who died when part of a building collapsed in central Moscow over the weekend, officials said.

The body of one worker was found in a basement room of the building, said Sergei Lyapin, a spokesman for the Moscow branch of the Emergency Situations Ministry.

Yevgeny Bobylyov, chief spokesman for the ministry's Moscow branch, said a second body was found a few hours later. The deaths of the two men were the only confirmed fatalities in the building collapse. (AP)

Fine for Japanese Captain

A Russian court on Monday found the captain of a Japanese fishing boat guilty of poaching and fined him 300,000 rubles ($11,500), news agencies reported.

Kawabata Takashi was detained when the Russian coast guard seized his boat on Jan. 21 off the coast of Kunashir, one of the disputed islands that Russia calls the Kuril Islands and Japan calls the Northern Territories.

Russian authorities said the boat, the No. 38 Zuisho Maru, was in Russian waters and carrying more than 1,800 kilograms of fish. Takashi pleaded guilty and apologized, Itar-Tass reported. (AP)

Tomsk Governor Stays Put

President Vladimir Putin has nominated Tomsk Governor Viktor Kress for another term in office, the Kremlin announced on its web site Monday.

Under a 2005 law that scrapped direct gubernatorial elections, Kress' nomination will now be submitted to the regional legislature for approval. (MT)

Gorbachev Has Minor Fall

Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev canceled a planned visit to Denmark after hurting his leg in a fall, his aide said Monday, adding that the injury was "nothing serious."

Gorbachev, 76, slipped and fell at his dacha outside Moscow on Saturday, straining his leg, said Vadim Polyakov, adding that Gorbachev had been taken to a hospital but was back home. (AP)