Russia 100324 Basic Political Developments



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Russia 100324

Basic Political Developments

  • Reuters: Ukraine PM seeks broad span of Russia agreements - "Tomorrow I will fly to Moscow to meet Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin to discuss the themes and content of these possible agreements," he said. Analysts say Yanukovich, seen to have closer ties with Moscow than his predecessor, could seek to solve a number of issues including gas prices and a gas consortium, loans and the fate of the Russian Black Sea fleet, in one package.


  • CRI.cn: Chinese VP Meets Putin, Stresses Friendship, Co-op

  • CCTV: China, Russia pledge closer cooperation

  • Itar-Tass: Xi Jinping, Medvedev to discuss strategic partnership

  • Moscow Times/Reuters: China’s Heir-Apparent Offers Alliance - “Xi Jinping is considered to be one of the candidates to replace Hu Jintao so it is a very important visit, to get acquainted with him and to understand the aims of the man who could be the next ruler of China,” said Fyodor Lukyanov, editor of the magazine Russia in Global Affairs.

  • Moscow Times: VTB’s China Loan Grows - The Export-Import Bank of China increased its credit line to state-run VTB Group, the country’s second-biggest lender, to $800 million from $500 million, VTB said Tuesday. The money can be borrowed in Chinese yuan or in “fully convertible” currencies, VTB said.

  • RBC: Vnesheconombank takes out loan from China

  • Hamsayeh: Russia and China Support a Multi-Polar World - We are in favor of Russia playing an important role in international and regional affairs and to achieve that we will surely support you.
  • Press TV: China seeks Russia alliance to counter US dominance - The visit by the Russian official comes as Moscow and Beijing seek to put the rivalries of the Cold War behind them and rise as counterweights to the global dominance of the US.


  • RIA: Russia conducts Navy anti-submarine drills in Sea of Japan

  • Voice of Russia: Russia holds its first anti-radiation exercises - Russia has launched its first radiation emergency exercises in the Far East. The two-day exercises will involve experts and rescue workers from the Emergency Situations Ministry, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Federal Security Service and the Federal Migration Service of Russia. The aim of the exercises is to assess the country’s ability to protect its people in case of a radiation threat.  

  • Itar-Tass: Somali pirates expanding area of operations - Somali pirates have apparently expanded a geographic area of their operations, as suggested by the reports on their seizure of a Turkish dry cargo ship at a distance of about a thousand nautical miles /1,820 kilometers/ away from the African coast.

  • RIA: Russian, Qatari premiers to talk energy investment

  • KUNA: Qatari-Russian talks to tackle bilateral cooperation, reign''s situation - Talks will touch on boosting cooperation between security bodies to counter terror alongside other challenges, adding that Qatari Prime Minister will discuss cooperation in the fields of peaceful use of nuclear energy, economy, investments, and satellite communications with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

  • News.am: Moscow and London discussed CIS, South Caucasus situation - Russian Deputy FMs Sergei Ryabkov and Grigory Karasin met with UK Foreign Office political Director Geoffrey Adams.

  • Itar-Tass: Int'l fuel and energy forum to open in St Petersburg - Effectuation of strategic development tasks in the fuel and energy sector is the highlight of the agenda of the St Petersburg International Fuel and Energy Forum 2010 that opens here Wednesday.
  • BarentsObserver: National security challenged by Arctic climate change - Talking to newspaper Rossiiskaya Gazeta, Yuri Averyanov, one of the leaders in the Security Council administration, maintains that Russia in 10-15 years will face serious trouble in its Arctic territories because of the melting permafrost.


  • Viet Nam News: President seeks stronger defence ties with Russia

  • Reuters: Russia, China push Iran to change nuclear stance

  • Reuters: Russia, China urged Iran to change nuclear stance

  • RIA: Russian drug chief to announce new plan against Afghan drug threat - "In particular, Russia's proposals will include plans of eliminating opium plantations in Afghanistan, exchange of operative data with NATO members, including on location of drug laboratories and deliveries of precursors," the source told RIA Novosti.

  • Itar-Tass: Russian-NATO Council to discuss drugs production in Afghanistan - Viktor Ivanov, the director of the Russian Federal Service for Control over the Circulation of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances /Rosnarkokontrol/ has arrived in Brussels to attend the meeting.

  • Moscow Times: Russia's UN Envoy Presses NATO on Poppies - Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin made clear to the UN Security Council that Moscow was concerned about the reported "intention of ISAF [NATO] in Afghanistan to give up on destroying the poppy fields, including in those territories that have been liberated from Taliban."

  • Russia Today: Horrific tale of Afghan family addiction a sad metaphor for casualties of war

  • Prague Monitor: Obama wants new START treaty to be signed in Prague - U.S. President Barack Obama would like to sign the U.S.-Russian START treaty on nuclear arms reduction with his Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev in Prague, daily Hospodarske noviny (HN) writes today, referring to several reliable diplomatic sources.

  • Thenews. pl: Polish president invited to Moscow for WW II ceremony

  • Balkans.com: Bulgaria: Atomstroyexport with up to 80% share in NPP Belen
  • Focus: Interior Ministry uncovers scheme for funds draining from NPP Belene - The report defines Gazprom’s offer to become a shareholder as “suspicious” and states Russian Atomstroyexport was chosen to implement the project in a mock tender. So far, a total of EUR 1 billion has been invested in the project, with payments for consultants and Atomstroyexport being EUR 430, 4 million, the report reads.


  • Google search: Kazakh, Russian Vice PMs to hold working meeting - First vice prime ministers of Kazakhstan and Russia Umirzak Shukeyev and Igor Shuvalov are expected to meet in Moscow today

  • Messenger: Are Georgia and Russia talking in secret? - Leader of the Parliamentary minority Christian Democratic Movement (CDM), Giorgi Targamadze, stated at the Parliamentary session on March 23 that secret negotiations might be going on between the Georgian and Russian authorities. He said that suspicions have been sparked by reports that Russia is about to join the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

  • Expert Club: Moscow is preparing a military agreement with Tskhinvali

  • Expert Club: Bagapsh and Kokoity will have to share with Russian Ministry of Regional Development

  • Expert Club: Shevchenko promised to help "Daryal" - The Public Chamber of Russia wants to change system of crossing of the Russian-Georgian border. Member of the Chamber Maxim Shevchenko promised residents of border areas to achieve simplification of crossing system through the Kazbegi - Upper Larsi checkpoint.

  • Messenger: IPRM meeting in Gali ends with no results - As expected the fourteenth round of incidents prevention and response mechanism meetings in Gali between the Georgian and the de facto Abkhazian authorities ended with no result on Tuesday.

  • Georgian Daily: Russian Customs Union May Undermine Georgia Embargo - “Georgian products may return to Russia via Belarus and Kazakhstan” when trade borders are removed within the customs union on July 1, Saakashvili’s spokeswoman Manana Manjgaladze told reporters in the capital Tbilisi today, citing the president.
  • Financial Times: UC Rusal reprieve in Guinea battle - Oleg Deripaska's UC Rusal said yesterday it had won a reprieve in its legal battle with Guinea over ownership of the Friguia alumina refinery. But Guinea's mining minister, Mahmoud Thiam, said he was not aware of the ruling and intended to pursue a claim for compensation. "Even if they won an appeal giving them back the shares, it does not negate the fact that they owe us in excess of $900m," he said.


  • Shephard.co.uk: Russia displays civil and military helicopters in Chile

  • Moscow Times: Sheremetyevo Terminal Date - Sheremetyevo International Airport will open its new Terminal E on March 29

  • RIA: Russian region doubles "car scrapping premium" - The government of Russia's Nizhny Novgorod Region on the Volga has doubled the premium paid to users of old cars who agree to have their car scrapped in line with a new disposal scheme, the governor's press service said.

  • Interfax: Russia devising new police law – interior minister: "Upon analyzing all the existing problems, a decision supported by the country's leadership has been made on developing a new law on police, which would be new in its spirit. This should be a universal and socially-oriented legal act, whose main principle will be the protection of our citizens' rights and freedoms," Nurgaliyev said on Police Wave radio on Wednesday.

  • Itar-Tass: Minister offers public to take part in preparing new law on police

  • Russia-IC: False bomb alarm stopped functioning of Yakutsk airport

  • RIA: Moscow to pay last respects to chief firefighter

  • Moscow Times: New Grain Producer Lobby - Grain producers from 32 regions formed a new body to lobby for policies favorable to farmers, Siberian Agrarian Holding chairman Pavel Skurikhin said Tuesday at its first meeting.

  • Moscow Times: Vekselberg to Oversee Russia’s Silicon Valley
  • Moscow Times: Why Putin Isn’t Afraid of a Free Internet - During 10 years of Vladimir Putin’s rule, Russia collected more than $1.5 trillion selling oil and gas but didn’t build a single kilometer of new highway. In the same period, China built 5,000 to 6,000 kilometers of highways every year… Russia’s equivalent to the Chinese peasant is the archetypal Vanya the tractor driver. Vanya has been drinking for the past 30 years and uses his tractor mainly to get to the local store to buy another bottle of vodka, not to work his plot of land. In contrast, the typical Chinese peasant is prepared to work, eat and sleep at the factory for five years straight to save up a few thousand dollars to open his own little kiosk selling fruit or other goods. Vanya the tractor driver will never vote for a liberal opposition candidate, nor will he take part in a protest or rebellion. Deep in his soul, he understands that he doesn’t deserve anything more in life than his beloved bottle of vodka.


  • Spero News: 'You Wrote Nasty Things About Putin' - "It's definitely flattering for a journalist to be so hated, but I was disappointed that I wouldn't get to interview Churov. I was really looking forward to asking him why he came into the office in overall hunting fatigues the week before the election."

  • Moscow Times: Human Rights Activists Seek Western Protection - 
“Our people are being killed and injured and none of us knows who will be next,” veteran human rights campaigner Lyudmila Alexeyeva told a European Union conference in Moscow.

  • Moscow Times: Luzhkov's Powerful Deputy Caught in Corruption Probe

  • True/Slant: Hillary Clinton talks with the Russian Larry King

  • Executive Intelligence Review: London's 'Our Men' in Moscow Keep Poisoning Russian Policy - Some of the members of the Gaidar-Chubais team had earlier departed to the private sector, joining the ranks of would-be "irreversible" private-property owners, some of them on an obscenely huge scale. Others, however, filtered into the institutions of Russian policy-making and continued to hold key positions throughout the first decade of the new century, even as President Vladimir Putin sought to regroup the Russian economy and shift it away from its addiction to raw materials exports.
  • Chatham House: Russia and the Arctic: Parachuting In - Russia's armed forces are expected to try to seize international headlines in the coming weeks by dropping a team of specially trained parachutists over theNorth Pole. Moscow claims to be 'peacefully' commemorating the first airborne landing there made by two Soviet scientists, Vitaly Volovich and Andrei Medvedev, in May 1949. But much more is at stake: questions of power and energy.


  • Russia Today: Principled childless gain ground in Russia - Modeled after an American idea, Russia's online Childfree Community has thousands of members. Of different ages and sexes, they are brought together by their rebellion against social norms. They can have children, but simply do not want to.

  • Earthtimes: Russia!: Former Intelligence Operative Builds $150,000 Stereo Systems Out of His Basement

  • Russia Today: 24 March, 2010 in Russian Newspapers

    • Trud: Brain-drain has been reversed - High-tech specialists are returning to Russia from the United States and Europe

    • Ivestiya: Marxism - “Crisis-ism”

    • Nezavisimaya: A special group has been created in Tbilisi to fight against Saakashvili

  • Reuters: PRESS DIGEST - Russia - March 24

    • KOMMERSANT

    • Ukraine is in talks with Russia's Gazprom (GAZP.MM) to lower the price it pays for gas imports to $180 per cubic metre, the daily reports.

    • Russia's economy ministry plans to introduce 5 percent export duty for potash in 2010, the paper writes.

    • VEDOMOSTI

    • A popular game on a Russian social networking website has made profit of $20 million in one year, the paper says.

    • The paper runs an interview with the chief Executive Officer of Alcatel-Lucent, Ben Verwaayen.

    • TNK-BP (TNBPI.RTS) aims to sell the Kovykta gas field to Rosneftegaz, a state holding company with stakes in oil sector leader Rosneft and gas export monopoly Gazprom, for $700-900 million, the paper says.

    • GAZETA


    • The government of Moscow has abandoned the idea of decorating the city with posters of Joseph Stalin for the 65th anniversary of victory in World War Two, the daily reports.

    • VREMYA NOVOSTEI

    • Russia's government will consider lowering duties on imported cars to 25 from 30 percent, the paper writes.

    • KOMSOMOLSKAYA PRAVDA

    • Russia will spend 13 billion roubles ($440.4 million) to support small businesses in 2010, the paper writes.

    • Moscow Times: Today in Vedomosti

    • Law Sees Compensation for Legal Bureaucracy

    • 'The Happy Farmer' Reaps Rewards

    • Google Calls Off Search in China

  • Barentsnova: Sunday, Russia goes an hour ahead - Sunday, March 28 Russian clocks are an hour advanced for daylight time saving.

  • Itar-Tass: Around 200 settlements under threat of floods in southern Russia



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