RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “Presidential Address to Federal Assembly” – KremlinRu

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Podium with United Russia Logo, Gesturing

(Kremlin.ru – February 20, 2019) The President of Russia delivered the Address to the Federal Assembly. The ceremony took place in Gostiny Dvor.” [http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/59863] The presentation of the Address was attended by Federation Council members, State Duma deputies, members of the Government, leaders of the Constitutional Court and Supreme Court, governors. President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Members of the Federation […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Putin on national projects: Everyone preferring well-trodden road better quit now” – Interfax

Vladimir Putin file photo with VOA logo; screen shot from video still

MOSCOW. Feb 20 (Interfax) – No time must be wasted in the fulfillment of national projects, and everyone who prefers the well-trodden old roads had better quit now, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in his address to the Federal Assembly on Wednesday. “We have to move on and constantly gain pace. Everyone who prefers a well-trodden road free from pressure, […]

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Does Putinism Even Exist? Experts Disagree

Vladimir Putin file photo with VOA logo; screen shot from video still

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, February 16, 2019) Vladislav Surkov’s recent article has sparked discussions in Russia as to the nature of Putinism and even whether Putinism as an ideology and praxis even exists. Kazan’s Business-Gazeta surveyed eleven Russian and Tatar experts. Their answers capture a large part of this discussion (business-gazeta.ru/article/413672). Yevgeny Minchenko of the International […]

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Russia in 2019 and What Lies Ahead

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – Daniel Shapiro – February 14, 2019 – russiamatters.org/blog/russia-2019-and-what-lies-ahead) Daniel Shapiro is a graduate student associate with Russia Matters and Harvard’s Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies. What can we expect for Russia in 2019 and beyond? At a recent policy workshop held by the Washington, D.C.-based PONARS Eurasia network, scholars and analysts addressed this […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Is the arrest of US fund manager Michael Calvey a litmus test for Russia?” – bne Intellinews/ Ben Aris

File Photo of Outdoor Electronic Sign with Russian Exchange Data

“The arrest of Michael Calvey on February 14 on ‘large-scale embezzlement’ charges sent shockwaves …. Calvey has been both a savvy investor and at pains to keep his head down. He never comments on politics and is known as a straight shooter. … What is unusual is that a court issues an arrest warrant and a leading fund manager and […]

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RUSSIALINK: “It is necessary to fairly distribute money resources between cities, villages – Medvedev” – Interfax

File Photo of Car on Road in Siberian Town

MOSCOW. Feb 17 (Interfax) – The difference between the incomes of people living in cities and villages should decrease and the budget funds will be distributed more fairly, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said. “Of course, agglomerations, cities are where our country is developing. They are very important, a considerable number of people live there. But we should not forget […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Stroppy in Strunino; The lessons from protests in small-town Russia; The government is getting less and less popular” – The Economist

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

“… in this sleepy town some 120km north-east of Moscow … when local activists organised a march … against planned cuts to medical services, more than 100 people took to the streets. …. an example of shifts in public opinion … reshaping the country’s political landscape. … The rapture [over Ukraine] began to fade … when the government announced plans […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Medvedev at] Russian Investment Forum Sochi 2019 [Excerpts]” – GovernmentRu

Dmitri Medvedev file photo

(Government.ru – February 14, 2019 – government.ru/en/news/35726/) Plenary session Success Factors: Ideas, Personnel, Skills. The forum’s main theme is National Projects: From Strategy to Action. The Russian Investment Forum exhibition includes promising investment projects from the regions and companies. Excerpts from Dmitry Medvedev’s remarks at a plenary session of the investment forum: This forum is completely different from any previous […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “Dmitry Medvedev answers questions from TV presenter Irada Zeynalova (NTV) at the Sochi 2019 forum. [Re sanctions]” – GovernmentRu

Dmitri Medvedev file photo

(Government.ru – February 14, 2019) Irada Zeynalova: We know perfectly well that the Americans are now preparing a package of doomsday sanctions. They already know all the sensitive points of our economy. Our economy is growing even with the sanctions, but they still have surprises for us. What should we do in this situation? Do we even fear these sanctions? […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Abortion in Russia: How Has the Situation Changed Since the Soviet Era? [Excerpt]” – PONARS Eurasia/ Victoria Sakevich, Maria Lipman

Ultrasound and Photo of Prenatal Child file photo

(PONARS Eurasia/ Victoria Sakevich, Maria Lipman – February 12, 2019) Victoria Sakevich is a Senior Researcher at the Institute of Demography at the Higher School of Economics, Russia. She has been studying the demography of reproductive health for many years. [Full text with charts: http://www.ponarseurasia.org/point-counter/article/abortion-russia-how-has-situation-changed-soviet-era] Soviet women commonly resorted to abortion as a way to end unwanted pregnancies. In the […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “Dmitry Medvedev on the strategic goals of the country’s development” – RIA Novosti

Dmitri Medvedev file photo

The start of the year provides an excellent opportunity to talk about plans and prospects. A great goal stands before us – accelerating development in key areas of the economy and the social sphere. And there is every opportunity to achieve this. I am talking about 12 national projects. Their cost along with the infrastructure plan is R25,700 bn (391 […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin at] Meeting with representatives of the public: the Housing and Urban Environment national project” – KremlinRu

Kazan file photo

(Kremlin.ru – February 12, 2019) During his trip to Tatarstan, Vladimir Putin visited the Moskovsky Centre of Culture and Sports in Kazan where he met with representatives of the public. The President said in his opening remarks that he was beginning a series of meetings with the public on the implementation of national projects. The meeting in Kazan focused on […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin at] Expanded meeting of the State Council Presidium on improving housing and creating a comfortable urban environment” – KremlinRu

Kremlin and River

(Kremlin.ru – February 12, 2019) Vladimir Putin held an expanded meeting of the State Council Presidium on the work of regional executive authorities of the Russian Federation aimed at improving housing conditions and creating a comfortable urban environment. A short presentation of Innopolis was held for the President before the meeting. Russia’s youngest city was established on June 9, 2015 […]

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Q&A: Hurdles Ahead As Russia Surges On With ‘Sovereign Internet’ Plan

File Image of Laptop Computer, Tables and Mobile Device, adapted from image at energy.gov

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Alan Crosby – February 12, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/q-a-hurdles-ahead-as-russia-surges-on-with-sovereign-internet-plan/29766229.html) Draft legislation is in the pipeline in Russia that backers say is an effort to ensure the operation of a Russian Internet if access to servers located abroad is cut off or to prevent enemies abroad […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Officials get somber on GDP growth” – BMB Russia/ Bear Market Brief

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

“… Oreshkin cited … one-off factors such as an increase in oil production and a dangerous boom in consumer borrowing as unsustainable sources of 2018 growth. … tr[ying] to refocus the discussion on structural reforms …. [and] a massive investment drive via national projects in infrastructure, demography, health, education, and exports …. Nevertheless, to the extent that the high 2018 […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Great Firewall fears as Russia plans to cut itself off from internet; Moscow says temporary disconnection is a test of its cyberdefence capabilities” – The Guardian (UK)/ Alex Hern, Marc Bennetts in Moscow

File Image of Laptop Computer, Tables and Mobile Device, adapted from image at energy.gov

“Russia is planning to temporarily disconnect from the internet … to test its cyberdefence capabilities[, a]ccording to a report on the Russian news site RBC … to analyse … preparedness for a draft law mandating a ‘sovereign’ internet. Under the draft law, all internal internet traffic would be carried within the country’s own networks. Any traffic that leaves Russia would […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Surkov Hints Putin Himself No Longer Essential for the System to Persevere; Does Vladislav Surkov’s latest piece of post-modern fancy have a serious political message?” – Moscow Times/ Mark Galeotti

Vladislav Surkov file photo

“… Surkov … coined ‘sovereign democracy’ and ‘non-linear war’ … a presidential adviser with apparent overall responsibility for policy over Ukraine …. [H]e has to negotiate razor-toothed factional and jurisdictional disputes between the Kremlin, the presidential administration in Old Square, the FSB and the military. … [one of the] high-flyers … lack[ing] a strong personal connection with Putin, or a […]

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Those Fishy-Looking Russian Economic Stats Look A Lot Like Those Fishy-Looking Soviet Economic Stats

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Mike Eckel – February 11, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/those-fishy-looking-russian-economic-stats-look-a-lot-like-those-fishy-looking-soviet-economic-stats/29764301.html) When Russia’s state statistics agency released its initial estimates of 2018 economic growth on February 4, it caught economists, investment bankers, financial analysts, and many others off-guard. It wasn’t because the reported gross domestic product (GDP) […]

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Russian Bill On ‘Autonomous Operation’ Of Internet Advances In Duma

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – February 12, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/russian-bill-on-autonomous-operation-of-internet-advances-in-duma/29765882.html) Russia’s lower house of parliament has given preliminary approval to a bill that backers say is designed to ensure the operation of the Internet in Russia if access to servers located abroad is cut off. The legislation, which critics […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Ideas in Surkov article ‘Putin’s Long State’ has supporters, opponents in Kremlin – Peskov” – Interfax

Vladislav Surkov file photo

MOSCOW. Feb 11 (Interfax) – There are supporters in the Kremlin of the viewpoint stated by Russian presidential aide Vladislav Surkov in his article “Putin’s Long State,” but his arguments can be debated, Russian presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov said. He told reporters the president will be informed of the article in the general media digest. “Does this viewpoint have […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Peskov does not know whether Putin read Surkov’s article” – Interfax

Dmitry Peskov file photo adapted from image at kremlin.ru/wikimedia commons

MOSCOW. Feb 12 (Interfax) – Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said he doubts that President Vladimir Putin will react to the article by Vladislav Surkov that was published on Monday, considering that he is busy preparing to deliver the address to the Federal Assembly. “I do not think so; a lot of articles [are being published]. You must agree that […]

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Rosstat Can’t be Trusted Until It Becomes Independent, ‘Nezavisimaya gazeta’ Says

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, February 8, 2019) People have long distrusted statistics – Mark Twain’s observation that “there are lies, damned lies, and then statistics’ is a commonplace – but over the last two years and especially over the last two weeks, Russians have come no longer to believe them at all if they are issued […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “With Savings to Burn, Russia Turns (Again) to a State-Led Spending Plan” – New York Times/ Andrew E. Kramer

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

“… So much gold has piled up in its central bank that Russia surpassed China last year to become the world’s fifth-largest holder of gold. … Russia has $472 billion in reserves, more than the country’s combined public and foreign debt of $453 billion and nearly three times what the I.M.F. recommends. … the lode is also making for an […]

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Inventorying the Past: Russia Refreshes Its Historical Memory

New Year's Eve on Red Square with Fireworks, Kremlin, Saint Basil's, Crowds

(Kennan Institute – wilsoncenter.org/program/kennan-institute – Nikolay Epplee – Feb. 1, 2019) Nikolay Epplee is an independent researcher working on international memorial culture and on memory of Soviet state terror. He published extensively on memory issues in Vedomosti, InLiberty, Colta, and other Russian media. [wilsoncenter.org/blog-post/inventorying-the-past-russia-refreshes-its-historical-memory] The New Year’s holidays are one of the few times in the year that different generations […]

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Russia’s isolationist ‘sovereign internet’ bill worries experts and users alike

File Image of Laptop Computer, Tables and Mobile Device, adapted from image at energy.gov

(GlobalVoices – Christopher Moldes – January 26, 2018 – globalvoices.org/2019/01/26/russias-isolationist-sovereign-internet-bill-worries-experts-and-users-alike/) After a bill was introduced in the Russian State Duma (the lower chamber of Russia’s bicameral legislative branch), the Russian government soon plans to discuss the feasibility of creating a so-called “sovereign internet” system. This system would purportedly safeguard networks within Russia from foreign information attacks, and calls for significant […]

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Collapse of Putin’s Rating Irreversible and Spreading – Five Articles Highlight Extent of Crisis

Vladimir Putin file photo with VOA logo; screen shot from video still

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, January 21, 2019 – windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2019/01/collapse-of-putins-rating-irreversible.html) Five articles over the last several days call attention to what is already the biggest crisis Vladimir Putin has faced during his almost 20 years in power: the collapse in public trust in Putin personally with Russians blaming him and not just lower-level officials for their problems. […]

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Russian Political Opposition, Russian Popular Protests Seldom Coalesce

Moscow Protest File Photo

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, January 19, 2019) The agendas of those typically identified as the Russian opposition and those of Russians angry enough to go into the streets seldom intersect, thus depriving the protesters of leadership and depriving the political opposition of the energy that the protesters could provide. That suits the Kremlin just fine because […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Trust in Putin slides to 13-year low of 33.4% in January” – bne Intellinews

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Podium with United Russia Logo, Gesturing

“Trust in … Putin fell to a 13 year low in the first poll of 2019 by the state owned pollster, the Russian Public Opinion Research Centre (VTsIOM), slipping from 36.5% on December 29 to 33.4% on January 13. … Putin’s lowest popularity … since … 2006. Even during the mass protests of December 2011 following a rigged Duma election […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Behind Russia’s cyberwarfare lies a serious case of cyber-phobia” – Washington Post/ Lincoln Pigman

File Image of Laptop Computer, Tables and Mobile Device, adapted from image at energy.gov

“… Russia grapples with its own deep cyber insecurity. Notwithstanding their bold moves in cyberspace, Russia’s leaders have spent much of the last decade panicking about cyber tools and the prospect of falling victim to their use by foreign adversaries. To be sure, the Kremlin isn’t worried that U.S. spies are hacking its voter systems. Rather, as my new study […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “New Russian order: After presidency, yet another role for Putin?” – Christian Science Monitor/ Fred Weir

File Photo of Vladimir Putin Seated at Desk

“Russia faces a looming question: What follows Putin’s current, likely final presidential term? An answer is beginning to take shape – and may involve a new position for Putin and a reshaped political landscape” “For many years, the main slogan of anti-Kremlin opposition activists – often shouted as they were being dragged into police vans at street protests – has […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Volodin proposes expansion of Duma powers” – Bear Market Brief

Russian State Duma Building file photo

“… Duma chairman Vyacheslav Volodin is lobbying for constitutional changes … [to] expand the power of the Duma in an attempt to improve the relative balance of power and checks and balances within government …. The Kremlin is actively downplaying talk, likely trying to head off any progress so it can shape outcomes. Nothing Volodin could propose would fix the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia sanctions: Myths and lessons” – The Hill/ Nigel Gould-Davies

Portion of U.S. Treasury Department Building Facade, North Side, with Sculpture of Alexander Hamilton

“… First, sanctions now directly target economic elites and major private assets, not only state officials and companies. Second, the United States is deploying some of the most potent weapons in its sanctions arsenal … hitherto used against terrorist groups, transnational crime and ‘rogue states.’ Third, sanctions have become an accepted, not exceptional, instrument for dealing with Russia. … 1. … […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russians are ashamed of the ‘eternal poverty’ of their country” – bne Intellinews

File Photo of Kremlin Aerial View, adapted from .gov source

“… The collapse of the Soviet Union and the loss of superpower status was … humiliating … Putin has played on [that] with actions like the annexation of Crimea and the war in Syria, to restore some sense of national pride. However, a … Levada Center [poll] this month found that Russians continue to be ashamed of their ‘eternal poverty’ […]

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Once Upon A Handout: Russian Fairy Tales Accused Of Teaching Kids To Freeload

Central Bank of Russia file photo

(Article ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Tony Wesolowsky – Jan. 17, 2019 – also appeared at rferl.org/a/once-upon-a-handout-russian-fairy-tales-accused-of-teaching-kids-to-freeload/29716156.html) Children in Russia may be spooked by the witches and other dark characters in some of the country’s fairy tales, but a senior Central Bank official sees something even more sinister. Russian fairy tales are teaching kids to expect […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Washington theaters shine a spotlight on Vladimir Putin” – Washington Post/ Nelson Pressley

Vladimir Putin file photo with VOA logo; screen shot from video still

“The Russian president was satirized … in the delirious ‘Putin on Ice (that isn’t the real title …)’ at Baltimore’s Single Carrot Theater. Putin is unnamed but unmistakable in Pulitzer Prize finalist Rajiv Joseph’s ‘Describe the Night,’ an Obie Award winner last year as best American play …. [C]ementing Putin as a stealth theatrical headliner is ‘Kleptocracy,’ a new drama […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Why Russia’s Economy Is Headed for Trouble; A lack of real reforms and a hyper-dependence on oil has prevented the emergence of a healthy, diverse economy” – The National Interest/ Michael Rubin/ American Enterprise Institute.

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Podium with United Russia Logo, Gesturing

“… Putin’s lasting legacy … will not be his wars in Georgia or Ukraine nor the new submarines, fighter jets, nuclear weapons, or hypersonic missiles whose manufacture and unveilings he has overseen. Rather, Putin’s historic legacy will likely be inheriting a country with great economic potential and leaving it an empty husk.  After so many years in power, Putin has […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Pragmatic Paternalism: The Russian Public and the Private Sector” – Carnegie Moscow/ Andrei Kolesnikov, Denis Volkov

Men Sitting Around Long Oval Boardroom Table, File Photo of FIFA Officials Meeting with Vladmir Putin

“Russians have a dream for their children and their grandchildren of a different environment that is favorable for entrepreneurship and private initiatives. This is where the true interests of Russians and their perceptions about the future diverge radically from the interests and perceptions of the state in which they live. …”

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RUSSIALINK: “Official Data Vastly Underestimates Russian Emigration – Report” – Moscow Times

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – January 16, 2019) At least six times more Russians are leaving the country than officially estimated, a comprehensive study conducted by the Proekt news outlet said on Wednesday. Proekt’s report highlights discrepancies between official data from the Rosstat federal statistics agency and data compiled by countries where Russians emigrate to. Rosstat estimates 377,000 Russians left […]

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Ever More Russians Drawing Analogies between Russia Now and Russia in 1917, Kagarlitsky Says

File Photo of Revolutionaries Marching in Moscow in 1917, adapted from image at state.gov

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, January 15, 2019) Ever more Russians are drawing analogies between their country today and its situation in 1917 and between Vladimir Putin and the last tsar Nicholas II, sociologist and commentator Boris Kagarlitsky says; and this is quite “logical” given the tone deaf reaction of the powers that be in both cases […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian lawmakers amend criminal code to reduce pressure on social media activity” – bne Intellinews

Montage of Instagram, Twitter and Facebook Logos, adapted from image at nps.gov

“… the State Duma … adopted amendments to … partially decriminalise … [criminal] code[] Article 282 … widely used for … offences involving social media content. As reported by … Meduza, first-time offenders will now face … misdemeanour charges, risking a RUB20,000 fine ($287 at the current exchange rate) or a 15-day jail sentence, instead of felony charges and a […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Medvedev speech excerpts:] 10th Gaidar Forum: The main theme of the 2019 Gaidar Forum is Russia and the World: National Development Goals and Global Trends.” – GovernmentRu

Dmitri Medvedev file photo

(Government.ru – Jan. 15, 2019 – government.ru/en/news/35366/) The Gaidar Forum is an ongoing discussion platform for pressing current issues. The forum has been held annually since 2010 in memory of Yegor Gaidar, a researcher, economist and ideologist of the early 1990s reforms in Russia. Forum discussions centre on Russia’s place and strategic role in the world. Among forum moderators are […]

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As Bad as Russian Roads are for Travel, Russia’s Waterways are Worse, Yemelchenkov Says

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, January 12, 2019) For most of Russia’s histories, rivers and later canals were the primary transportation network over that country’s vast roadless and largely railway-less areas. Its roads have remained notorious for their poor quality, and its railroads are suffering ever more accidents. But the state of its rivers and canals has […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russian Justice Ministry begins inspection of Memorial research center as foreign-agent NGO – Memorial” – Interfax

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

MOSCOW. Jan 14 (Interfax) – The Russian Justice Ministry is beginning to inspect the Memorial Scientific Research and Education Center on January 14 to see if it is fulfilling the functions of a foreign agent NGO, International Memorial’s press service said. The organization has provided all the documents the ministry requested, the press service said. “The Memorial Scientific Research and […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Medvedev hopes pact with oil cos to rein in prices will be honored” – Interfax

Dmitri Medvedev file photo

MOSCOW. Jan 14 (Interfax) – Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said he hoped agreements between the government and oil companies to rein in fuel prices would be followed and that it would not be necessary to resort to restrictive measures. “As you know we have a number of understandings with oil companies, including that price growth for petroleum products, motor […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin at] Meeting on establishing cultural and educational centres in Russian regions” – KremlinRu

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

(Kremlin.ru – January 8, 2019) Vladimir Putin held a meeting on the creation of cultural, educational and museum centres in Vladivostok, Kaliningrad, Kemerovo and Sevastopol. The President set the goal to create theatre, concert, museum and educational centres in the Russian regions in his Address to the Federal Assembly in 2018, with details codified in the Presidential Executive Order On […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Managing Russia’s dissolution” – The Hill/ Janusz Bugajski

Russia Regions Map

“Russia’s ongoing attacks on Ukraine and … persistent subversion of Western states demonstrates that Washington and Brussels have failed to restrain Moscow’s imperial ambitions. Engagement, criticism and limited sanctions have … reinforced Kremlin perceptions that the West is weak and predictable. To curtail Moscow’s neo-imperialism a new strategy is needed … [to] nourish[] Russia’s decline and manages the international consequences […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “‘The art of rejection’ A new report reveals the hidden mechanisms authorities use to restrict protests in Russia” – Meduza

Moscow Protest File Photo

“Article 31 of the Russian Constitution states that citizens of the Russian Federation ‘shall have the right to assemble peacefully.’ However, when protests are not approved by local authorities, those who join them can face arrest, professional consequences, and even criminal charges. The anti-corruption protests that swept Russia on March 26 and June 12, 2017, as well as the Voters’ […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia to resume forex purchases after sanctions hiatus; Moscow will spend Rbs265.8bn between next Tuesday and early February” – Financial Times/ Max Seddon

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

“Russia’s finance ministry said it is resuming foreign currency purchases on open markets after fears over U.S. sanctions saw it halt them last year to head off a slide in the rouble rate. … Rbs265.8bn … next Tuesday and February 6, the ministry said in a statement on Friday. … the first since the central bank … stopped them in […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s GMO debate looks a lot like America’s – with more geopolitics” – Christian Science Monitor/ Fred Weir

File Photo of Wheat Field in Kenya, adapted from image at usda.gov

“… faced with something new, Russian lawmakers have generally found it easier to ban it than … debate it, even if such prohibitions often prove dysfunctional …. case in point: Russia’s legislation banning … production of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) … nominally implemented … to keep Russia’s food supply ‘pure.’ The passage two years ago of the law … prohibit[ing] […]

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