RUSSIALINK: “Michael Calvey Case Revisited: A Corporate Hit, a Bargaining Chip” – Kennan Institute/ Pavel Koshkin

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Kennan Institute – wilsoncenter.org/program/kennan-institute – Pavel Koshkin – wilsoncenter.org/blog-post/michael-calvey-case-revisited-corporate-hit-bargaining-chip) Pavel Koshkin is a research fellow of the Institute of U.S. and Canadian Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences (ISKRAN) and a contributor to Forbes Russia The American investor Michael Calvey, who was detained in February in Moscow on fraud charges, is back in the news again. Calvey, who has […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia’s Top Auditor Kudrin Blasts Corruption in Legal System” – Moscow Times

Alexei Kudrin file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – June 6, 2019) Russian economic growth is hampered by deep-seated corruption in the country’s legal system, the head of Russia’s auditing agency said Thursday. Audit Chamber head Alexei Kudrin told a St. Petersburg International Economic Forum panel that corruption in the Russian judiciary system goes back centuries, pointing to one of the classic Russian poet […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Most Russian Ministries Lack Online Transparency – Study” – Moscow Times

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – June 5, 2019) Only four out of Russia’s 22 ministry websites are transparent, a government audit has revealed. Experts commissioned by Russia’s Audit Chamber assessed the ministries’ openness of information, data and dialogue, assigning a letter grade to each of the three categories. Only the interior, culture, finance and energy ministries received AAA ratings, according […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “When flats become safe deposit boxes. Videos showing incredible amounts of money seized from officials and security services convince ordinary people of total corruption of state apparatus.” – Vedomosti/ Pavel Aptekar

Hand Pulling Cash from Envelope

“The phrase … a ‘flat where the money lies’ is increasingly … literal … [when there is] confiscation from yet another high-ranking official or security services officer of colossal amounts of cash stored … at home, in bags and packages. … Rosbalt … and … other media … reported … money and valuables worth R12bn … confiscated from FSB [Federal […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia has much work to do to build democracy ‘on ruins of socialism’ – Zorkin” – Interfax

Russian Constitutional Court file photo

ST. PETERSBURG. May 16 (Interfax) – Russia will need to make a “breakthrough into a lawful future” soon, Constitutional Court Chairman Valery Zorkin said. “Russia still has a lot to do on the path of affirming the legal democratic foundations of state and public life. A crucial factor in their formation is the equality of everyone before the law and […]

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RUSSIALINK: “3% of Russians Trust Officials’ Income Declarations – Poll” – Moscow Times

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – May 7, 2019) Only 3 percent of Russians believe that government officials submit trustworthy income declarations every year, according to an independent Levada Center survey. The 2018 declaration showed President Vladimir Putin earning 8.6 million rubles ($134,000), or less than half of what he earned in 2017. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev’s yearly pay rose to […]

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Mark Galeotti: “The Vory: Russia’s Super Mafia” – Pushkin House Book Prize Finalist

Stylized Artist's Depiction of Shadowy Figures in Dark Coats and Dark Hats, One Carrying a Briefcase

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Emily Couch – May 4, 2019 – themoscowtimes.com/2019/05/05/mark-galleotti-the-vory-russias-super-mafia-a65488) In “The Vory: Russia’s Super Mafia,” Mark Galeotti draws on years of research to tell the grimly absorbing tale of Russia’s criminal underworld. Galeotti is a specialist in Russian history, security and crime who is a senior researcher at the Institute of International Relations (Prague); a regular […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “A Great Firewall of Russia? Kremlin puts key bricks into place.” – Christian Science Monitor/ Fred Weir

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

“Russians have enjoyed a relatively freewheeling internet, but that is likely to change with a new surveillance law. How will the Russian public respond to their online life being closely monitored and constrained?” “Officially, Russia’s new Sovereign Internet Law is aimed at addressing problems that are vexing governments globally: the proliferation of ‘fake news’ and illegal content, the disturbing reach […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia is no place for young people” – Deutsche Welle

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

It’s almost impossible to find a decent salary and comfortable living conditions in Russia. For many young people, the only options are to build a life in Moscow or leave the country, says Anastasia Arinushkina. “… half of Russia’s citizens are unhappy with the size of their salaries and struggle to pay for health care and education, according to recent […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Calvey to stay under house arrest till mid-summer” – Interfax

Kremlin and River

MOSCOW. April 12 (Interfax) – The Basmanny District Court in Moscow has extended the period of house arrest of Baring Vostok investment fund founder and senior partner Michael Calvey, who is charged with fraud, until July 14, an Interfax correspondent reported from the courtroom. “The court will grant the request of investigators. The court will also extend the period of […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Is Russia Safe? U.S. Adds to New Kidnapping Threat List Along With Iran, Venezuela and These Other Countries” – Newsweek/ Tom O’Connor

“The United States has named Russia in a list of nearly three dozen countries where it warned its citizens risk being kidnapped …. State Department’s travel advisories for 35 nations featured a ‘K’ that signifies ‘the risks of kidnapping and hostage taking by criminal and terrorist actors …’ The department said that the use of a new indicator … was […]

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RUSSIALINK: “No need for constitutional adjustments, fundamental changes – Medvedev” – Interfax

Dmitri Medvedev file photo

MOSCOW. April 6 (Interfax) – The Russian Constitution does not require fundamental changes and any addition to the political system must not and may not affect human rights and the provisions on the form of government in the country, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said. “I want to stress that no adjustments, no fundamental changes to the current constitution, which I […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The UK executives helping Putin burnish Russia’s image; Meeting with top British businessmen could not come at a better time for the Kremlin” – Financial Times/ Henry Foy

File Photo of British Parliament Building, Big Ben, Thames, adapted from image at loc.gov

“Eleven years ago [BP’s] Bob Dudley … fled [Russia] citing ‘sustained harassment of the company and myself’ and threats to his life allegedly directed by politically connected oligarchs and Russia’s security services. Last month … Dudley, now head of the British oil group, was back, telling … Putin … at the Kremlin that he and the British company ‘deeply appreciate […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Serebrennikov’s house arrest prolonged by another 3 months” – Interfax

File Photos of Law Books and Gavel, adapted from image at fjc.gov

MOSCOW. April 2 (Interfax) – The Meshchansky Court of Moscow has extended the house arrest of the Gogol Center’s artistic director Kirill Serebrennikov, who has been charged as part of the Studio Seven case, until July 3, an Interfax correspondent reported. “The court finds that the state prosecutor’s request shall be granted and rules that defendant Serebrennikov’s house arrest shall […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Bulldogs under the rug; Russia’s new purges rattle the elite; No one is immune in the Kremlin’s in-fighting” – The Economist

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

“… [Mikhail Abyzov’s] arrest has … demonstrat[ed] to the Russian political class that everyone is vulnerable, unless … personally protected by … Putin. All must live in fear. … corruption is omnipresent, the rule of law is selective and property rights are dependent on the will of the Kremlin …. [with] a pattern of growing in-fighting and repression among elite […]

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RUSSIALINK: “More Than 1,300 Russian Officials Fired for Corruption in 2018 – Prosecutors” – Moscow Times

Hand Pulling Cash from Envelope

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – March 27, 2019) More than 1,300 Russian state officials suspected of violating corruption rules were fired for loss of trust last year, federal prosecutors said Tuesday. Russia ranks among the world’s most corrupt countries. Observers have criticized anti-graft campaigns under President Vladimir Putin’s rule as ineffective. The Prosecutor General’s Office said its intervention has led […]

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Putin Tells Prosecutors To Protect Rights Of Business Owners

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

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – March 19, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/putin-tells-prosecutors-to-protect-rights-of-business-owners/29830693.html) President Vladimir Putin has urged Russian prosecutors to protect the rights of businesspeople “with a view to improving the business climate.” Speaking to a gathering of prosecutors in Moscow on March 19, Putin said that a “more effective […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “U.S. investor jailed by Russia tells Washington to keep distance: prison monitor” – Reuters

File Photo of U.S. Embassy Moscow, with Russian Foreign Ministry Building in Distance

“The detention … of Michael Calvey, founder of the Baring Vostok private equity group, has strained U.S.-Russia ties and stoked talk of a possible U.S. boycott of an annual economic forum in June attended by … Putin. Calvey was detained along with three other executives from Baring Vostok after investigators accused them of stealing 2.5 billion roubles ($38.09 million), a […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Prosecutors must ensure proper prison conditions – Putin” – Interfax

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

MOSCOW. March 19 (Interfax) – Prosecutors must step up monitoring of conditions in jails and prisons, President Vladimir Putin said. “The penal system must remain under the constant scrutiny of prosecutors,” Putin said at a meeting with senior prosecution officials on Tuesday. “Together with colleagues from the [Federal Penitentiary Service] FSIN, regional human rights commissioners and representatives from human rights […]

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Russian Bills Banning ‘Fake News,’ Insults Head To Putin For Signature

Satellite Dishes

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – March 13, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/russian-bills-banning-fake-news-insults-head-to-putin-for-signature/29819238.html) Legislation enabling Russian authorities to block websites and hand out punishment for “fake news” and material deemed insulting to the state or the public is headed to President Vladimir Putin’s desk for his signature. The legislation, which Putin’s […]

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RUSSIALINK: “‘Point of No Return’: Russia’s Libertarians Lead Protest Against ‘Sovereign Internet’; A draft law aimed at creating an internet that can be cut off from the rest of the world’s has raised fears that Russia could turn into the next North Korea.” – Moscow Times

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Moscow Times – Evan Gershkovich – March 10, 2019 – themoscowtimes.com/2019/03/10/point-of-no-return-russias-libertarians-lead-protest-against-sovereign-internet-a64758) It was Saturday afternoon and Mikhail Svetov was buzzing with nervous energy. Just 24 hours later, the member of Russia’s Libertarian Party would be leading a protest against a draft bill aimed at creating a so-called sovereign internet. “I see signals that something unusual is happening. Something similar to […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Poroshenko’s team hit by defence industry corruption scandal, Tymoshenko starts impeachment process” – bne Intellinews

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

“… Poroshenko rivals in the upcoming presidential election are accusing him of ‘profiting from blood’ after an investigation revealed that the son of the president’s close business partner has been selling arms to separatist rebels in the breakaway eastern region of Donbas … [according to] a report broadcast on Ukrainian TV …. Former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, who leads the […]

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Russia Risk: It’s a Feature, Not a Bug

File Photo of Outdoor Electronic Sign with Russian Exchange Data

(Kennan Institute – wilsoncenter.org/program/kennan-institute – Maxim Trudolyubov – February 19, 2019 – wilsoncenter.org/blog-post/russia-risk-its-feature-not-bug) Maxim Trudolyubov is a Senior Fellow at the Kennan Institute and the Editor-at-Large of Vedomosti, an independent Russian daily. In a story both typical of Russian business practices and so unusual as to bring a response from Putin’s key business allies, the American investor Michael Calvey and […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia’s Black Market Totaled 20% of GDP in 2018 – Reports” – Moscow Times

Hands Opening Envelope Containing Cash

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – February 22, 2019) The size of Russia’s shadow economy was equal to 20 percent of the GDP last year, media reported Friday, citing the Rosfinmonitoring state financial watchdog. The watchdog recorded 20.7 trillion rubles ($315.9 billion) in undeclared imports and income taxes, as well as under-the-table salaries and other suspicious transactions, in 2018, the RBC […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Spokesman suggests Putin unhappy with prosecution of businesspeople” – Interfax

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

(Interfax – February 21, 2019) Russian President Vladimir Putin is unhappy with the continuing practice of arresting businesspeople suspected of committing economic crimes, his spokesman has suggested. His remarks come after US financier Michael Calvey was detained and later charged with fraud in a move that has caused disquiet among investors. “The president is dissatisfied with how effectively his orders […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Having an Honest Business Is Not Possible in Russia, Majority Says” – Moscow Times

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

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – February 20, 2019) A majority of Russians say that doing business in the country without breaking a few rules is impossible, according to a newly released state-funded survey. The poll was carried out a day after Michael Calvey, a U.S. citizen and one of the biggest private equity investors in Russia, was detained on suspicion […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Calvey’s arrest sends chill through Russia’s foreign investors; U.S. founder of Moscow-based Baring Vostok was seen as savvy operator” – Financial Times/ Max Seddon, Anne-Sylvaine Chassany

File Photo of Outdoor Electronic Sign with Russian Exchange Data

“Kremlin officials were touting Russia’s investment opportunities at a [Sochi resort] conference … when news trickled out that one of the country’s last remaining American investors had been thrown behind bars. Michael Calvey … founder of Moscow-based private equity fund manager Baring Vostok, remained one of the last Russia bulls at a time when most of his contemporaries had left […]

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Russia’s Kudrin Calls Detention Of American Investor ‘Emergency’ For Economy

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 – February 19, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/russian-official-calls-us-investor-s-detention-emergency-for-economy-/29778434.html) A longtime former finance minister who is close to President Vladimir Putin has called the arrest of a prominent American investment-fund manager an “emergency” for the Russian economy, suggesting it could further damage the country’s image and harm the […]

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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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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Top American investor detained in Moscow” – BMB Russia/ Bear Market Brief

Cash, Calculator, Pen

“Michael Calvey … was detained in Moscow … on charges of fraud. … Since founding Baring Vostok in 1994, Calvey has been one of the preeminent foreign investors in Russia. … [T]he fraud allegations may be fallout from an ownership dispute over Vostochny Bank …. a blow to Russia’s already cold investment climate. … one journalist noted, the Kremlin must […]

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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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Gangster Geopolitics: The Kremlin’s Use of Criminals as Assets Abroad

Stylized Artist's Depiction of Shadowy Figures in Dark Coats and Dark Hats, One Carrying a Briefcase

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – Mark Galeotti – January 17, 2018 – russiamatters.org/analysis/gangster-geopolitics-kremlins-use-criminals-assets-abroad) Mark Galeotti is a senior associate fellow of RUSI and a senior non-resident fellow at the Institute of International Relations Prague, as well as a 2018-19 Jean Monnet Fellow at the European University Institute. His most recent book is “The Vory: Russia’s Super Mafia” (Yale, 2018) [Amazon: […]

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Sarah Lindemann-Komarova: “Russia’s Happy Ending”

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

[originally posted 12.6.18] Subject: Russia’s Happy Ending Date: Thu, 6 Dec 2018 From: Sarah Lindemann-Komarova <echosiberia@gmail.com> Russia’s Happy Ending By Sarah Lindemann-Komarova [Founder, Siberian Civic Initiatives Support Center 1995 – 2014. Helped to establish this as the hub for the first civil society development support network in the former Soviet Union.] Link for article with pictures and video medium.com/@ECHOSiberia/russias-happy-ending-c77b332a6eec How […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s Constitutional Court decides to ease limits on foreign involvement in the media – a bit” – Meduza/ Mikhail Zelensky, translation by Hilah Kohen

Russian Constitutional Court file photo

“Russia’s Constitutional Court issued a decision … regarding Article 19.1, a law that governs mass media. The law prohibits foreigners from founding or controlling media outlets in Russia, but the Court ruled that it requires correction. The new ruling indicates that the prohibition itself is just ‘because that sort of influence might threaten the security of state information,’ but the […]

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Call for Papers: Business Ethics and National Patterns of Behavior: The Economics Profession in Russia

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

Subject: Call for Papers: Business Ethics and National Patterns of Behavior: The Economics Profession in Russia Date: Mon, 14 Jan 2019 From: Patricia Dowden <pedowden@gmail.com> I’m attaching a call for papers for a conference to be held in Saint Petersburg, Russia, in May of 2019. We would be very grateful if you could publish this to your readers. Best wishes, […]

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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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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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WADA to Inspect Moscow Lab for Doping Violations

Olympic Rings Lit at Night, adapted from image at state.gov

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – January 8, 2019) With the clock ticking towards new sanctions, Russian authorities said on Monday they would allow a World Anti-Doping Agency inspection team to return to a Moscow laboratory to retrieve data it had earlier been denied. Russia’s Sport Minister Pavel Kolobkov said WADA officials would return to Moscow on Wednesday. WADA also confirmed […]

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WADA ‘Bitterly Disappointed’ At Russian Failure To Meet Anti-Doping Deadline

Olympic Rings Lit at Night, adapted from image at state.gov

(Article ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Jan. 1, 2019 – also appeared at rferl.org/a/wada-bitterly-disappointed-at-russian-failure-to-meet-anti-doping-deadline/29687033.html) Russia faces the possibility of renewed sporting sanctions after the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) confirmed that Russian officials failed to hand over data from its anti-doping laboratory by December 31. WADA President Craig Reedie said on January 1 that he was “bitterly […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Putin signs law partially decriminalizing Article 282 of Russian Criminal Code on extremism” – Interfax

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

MOSCOW. Dec 28 (Interfax) – President Vladimir Putin has signed the law adjusting Article 282 of the Russian Criminal Code. The law passed in the State Duma on December 19 and approved by the Federation Council on December 21 was published on the official Internet portal of legal information on Thursday. The law initiated by the Russian president decriminalizes first-time […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Numbers Backing ‘Russia’s Agricultural Boom’ Were Inflated, Report Says” – Moscow Times

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – December 19, 2018) Russia’s widely lauded agricultural boom was overestimated by as much as 30 percent for certain crops, according to a report published earlier this month. Driven by a weaker ruble and higher oil prices, agriculture overtook arms sales in 2017 to become Russia’s second-biggest export sector behind oil and gas. Official data suggested […]

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RUSSIALINK: “U.S. State Department Upgrades Russia in Travel Advisory System” – Moscow Times

State Department Building and U.S. Flag

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – December 11, 2018) The U.S. State Department has moved Russia out of a list of countries to which “travel should be reconsidered” in an updated travel advisory published on Monday. In January 2018, the State Department listed Russia as one of the most dangerous countries for travelers in a new four-tier advisory system, along with […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin at] Meeting with Constitutional Court Chairman Valery Zorkin” – KremlinRu

Russian Constitutional Court file photo

(Kremlin.ru – December 12, 2018) Vladimir Putin met with Constitutional Court Chairman Valery Zorkin in the Kremlin. President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr Zorkin, greetings on Constitution Day. This is not an ordinary Constitution Day, because today is the 25th anniversary of the country’s fundamental law. The Constitutional Court bears special responsibility for ensuring compliance with this crucial legal instrument. […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin at] Reception marking the 25th anniversary of the Constitution’ – KremlinRu

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

(Kremlin.ru – December 12, 2018) Vladimir Putin attended a reception at the Kremlin to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the adoption of the Russian Federation Constitution. Invited guests included Government members, representatives of the Federation Council and the State Duma, federal executive and judicial bodies, and government bodies of the Russian regions, as well as representatives of religious denominations, public […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Court in Kirov finds ban on Navalny’s international travel unlawful” – Interfax

File Photo of Alexei Navalny Marching on Street with Others in Background; adapted from image at commons.wikimedia.org with credit to Evgeny Feldman, subject to Creative Commons license; original image at commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:FEV_1795_(cropped1).jpg, with license information at creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/deed.en and creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/legalcode

KIROV. Dec 7 (Interfax) – The Oktyabrsky District Court in Kirov has partially granted the claim of opposition activist Alexei Navalny against the Federal Bailiff Service that banned his international travel. “The claim has been partially satisfied,” a court representative told Interfax on Friday. He added that the hearing was held on December 6. Navalny confirmed the partial satisfaction of […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Decriminalization of Domestic Violence Was a ‘Mistake,’ Russian Official Admits” – Moscow Times

Kremlin and River

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – December 3, 2018) Russia’s top human rights official has called the country’s 2017 decision to adopt a law that decriminalizes domestic abuse “a mistake.” In 2017, Vladimir Putin signed a law that scrapped prison sentences for first-time abusers whose beatings result in “minor harm,” such as small abrasions, bruises and superficial wounds. Since the law […]

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New Russian Study Partially Lifts Veil on Post-1945 Trials of Soviets who Collaborated with Germans

File Photo of Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler Riding in Convertible

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, November 17, 2018) Court cases against Soviet citizens who collaborated with the Nazis has long been a little studied “and in part taboo subject,” according to Irina Makhalova, a historian at Moscow’s Higher School of Economics who is leading a small team that has partially lifted the veil on this subject. She […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “A Dissident Wins a Bittersweet Victory Over Putin; Europe’s rights court condemned the Kremlin’s persecution of Alexei Navalny, but the ruling could push Russia further away from the West.” – Bloomberg/Leonid Bershidsky

European Court of Human Rights Building file photo

“… Russian dissident Alexei Navalny has long had a catch-and-release relationship with … Putin and his regime. … [T]he European Court for Human Rights ruled that arrests in 2012 and 2014 violated Navalny’s rights. … likely to bring Russia a step closer to breaking off its remaining ties with European institutions.  The Putin regime has been playing an unpredictable game […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “IMF, World Bank see little progress in fight against corruption in Ukraine” – Interfax-Ukraine

International Monetary Fund Logo Over Ukraine Flag

“… key donors of Ukraine – the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank – note low effectiveness of the Ukrainian authorities in the fight against corruption. ‘We see good and important progress in setting out institutions for tackling investment …. Shortcomings in the judicial system and corruption are some of the key reasons why investment is so low […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Fines in Kirovles case can’t be reason for travel ban, were already paid – Navalny” – Interfax

File Photo of Alexei Navalny Marching on Street with Others in Background; adapted from image at commons.wikimedia.org with credit to Evgeny Feldman, subject to Creative Commons license; original image at commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:FEV_1795_(cropped1).jpg, with license information at creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/deed.en and creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/legalcode

MOSCOW. Nov 13 (Interfax) – The enforcement proceedings in the “second Kirovles case” cannot be the reason opposition politician Alexei Navalny has been banned from traveling abroad, as they were opened less than five days ago, according to Navalny. “The law allows five days for the voluntary execution of a warrant by court bailiffs,” Navalny said on his website on […]

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