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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

News in Brief

Arrest in Bangkok Killings

Police on Thursday arrested a 24-year-old Thai man on suspicion of killing two Russian tourists, Thai newspaper The Nation reported.

The bodies of Tatyana Tsimfer, 30, and Lyubov Svirkova, 25, were found Saturday morning slumped in lounge chairs on a beach in Pattaya, a resort town about 110 kilometers southeast of Bangkok.

The suspect was identified as Anuchit Lamlert. He had a record of robbing foreigners in Pattaya, a popular vacation spot among Russian tourists. Police said Anuchi had confessed to the killings Saturday, the newspaper reported. (MT)

Hate Crimes Rising

At least 15 people have been killed in apparent hate crimes in Russia so far this year, three times as many as in the same period last year, rights activists said Thursday.

Galina Kozhevnikova, head of the Sova analytical center, which monitors xenophobia, said an additional 67 people were injured in hate crimes, compared with 47 injured in such attacks in the first two months of last year.

"Over the past four years, every month, every year, every season we have seen a very serious increase in violence," she said. "Violence will be rising -- there is no doubt about it -- because it meets with almost no resistance." (AP)

Ruling Against Russia

STRASBOURG -- Russia subjected a prison inmate to inhumane treatment by keeping him in a severely overcrowded jail for more than 10 months, the European Court of Human Rights ruled on Thursday.

Roman Belevitsky said he had been kept in a cell with metal shields over the windows, where the temperature reached 45 degrees Celsius in summer. Inmates had to take turns sleeping and up to 70 people shared one toilet.

The court found that Russia was in breach of its duty not to subject anyone "to torture or to inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment," and ordered the government to pay Belevitsky 10,000 euros ($13,220) in damages and 350 euros in costs and expenses. (Reuters)

EU Sanctions on Belarus

BRUSSELS -- European Union member countries have agreed to extend sanctions on Belarus for another year and to delay a review of restrictions on Uzbekistan until May, officials said Thursday.

The delay in the Uzbek review, which had been scheduled this month, should be approved by foreign ministers of the 27 EU states Monday, while the extension of the Belarus sanctions will be formalized at the end of this month, the officials said. (Reuters)

Russia Blasts McConnell

The Foreign Ministry on Thursday said Mike McConnell, the newly installed U.S. intelligence chief, was harboring "outdated assumptions" about Moscow by accusing it of backtracking on democracy.

"As a former Sovietologist, Mike McConnell has old, outdated assumptions," a Foreign Ministry spokesman said. "His judgment is groundless and is contrary to the character and state of Russia-U.S. relations." (Reuters)

For the Record

Eleven students were hospitalized Wednesday in Nazran with symptoms of poisoning. Doctors suspect the teenagers were poisoned by tear gas sprayed at the school, Itar-Tass reported. (MT)

One coal miner was killed and nine were injured Thursday after part of a shaft collapsed in the town of Kiselyovsk in the Kemerovo region. (Reuters)