RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Vladimir Putin and Fyodor Lukyanov at] Meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club” – KremlinRu (transcript concluded)

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Valdai Club 2013 Meeting, Adapted from Screenshot of Valdai Club Video at youtube.com

(Kremlin.ru – October 19, 2017) Vladimir Putin took part in the final plenary session of the 14th annual meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club titled The World of the Future: Moving Through Conflict to Cooperation…. Fyodor Lukyanov: Rein Muellerson. Rein Muellerson: Thank you. My question is to President Putin. In your speech, you mentioned Catalonia. My observations suggest that, […]

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NEWSWATCH: “No pomp as Russia revolution centenary nears” – AFP

Kremlin and River

“… Russia strives to strike an odd balance … remembering the uprising that brought about the Soviet Union … stopping short of romanticising regime change. … 1917 saw Tsar Nicholas II abdicate in March and the Bolsheviks … seize power in October. Civil war erupted … followed by the creation in 1922 of the USSR, built on the ruins of the Russian empire. … Russia still […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Vladimir Putin and Fyodor Lukyanov at] Meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club” – KremlinRu

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Valdai Club 2013 Meeting, Adapted from Screenshot of Valdai Club Video at youtube.com

(Kremlin.ru – Sochi, October 19, 2017) [Video with English translation: http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/55882] Vladimir Putin took part in the final plenary session of the 14th annual meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club titled The World of the Future: Moving Through Conflict to Cooperation. The general topic of the Valdai Club this year is Creative Destruction: Will a New World Order Emerge […]

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Systemic Liberals and Communists Helping to Keep Putin Regime in Power, Shevtsova Says

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

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, October 17, 2017) It has become a commonplace to observe that “the Kremlin is losing control of the situation” and that it is using “preventive repressions” against not only its obvious opponents but even its own followers, Liliya Shevtsova. But despite regular predictions of its imminent demise, the Putin regime remains entrenched […]

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NEWSLINK: “When ‘against all’ isn’t necessarily against Putin; Prominent Russians react to Ksenia Sobchak’s presidential campaign” – Meduza

Ksenia Sobchak file photo

“Television host, socialite, and LʼOfficiel Russia chief editor Ksenia Sobchak announced on October 18 that she intends to run for president next year, confirming rumors that have circulated for the past six weeks. We still know very little about her campaign, though there are reports that political consultant Vitaly Shklyarov (who helped several opposition candidates win municipal races in Moscow […]

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Top Russian official ‘unaware’ of plans for new ‘foreign agent’ law

Kremlin and River

(Interfax – October 18, 2017) The first deputy head of Russia’s presidential administration, Sergei Kiriyenko, has said he is unaware of any forthcoming Russian legislation which would designate individuals with the status of “foreign agents”. “I don’t know anything about this,” Kiriyenko said on 18 October when asked about the matter. Media reports on 9 October, citing a source, said: […]

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Russian Director Vows To Quit Cinema After ‘Hysteria’ Over TV Spy Thriller

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

(Article ©2017 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Tom Balmforth – MOSCOW, October 17, 2017 – also appeared at rferl.org/a/russia-director-vows-to-quit-cinema-after-tv-spy-thriller/28800376.html) Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) agents battle fifth columnists and CIA “sleeper” cells bent on sowing chaos and torpedoing a gas deal with China. Americans seeking a “colored revolution” try to frame Russia for the assassination of an […]

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Russian Elections Chief Says Navalny Cannot Run Until 2028

(Article ©2017 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – October 17, 2017 – article also appeared at rferl.org/a/russia-navalny-elections-pamfilova-presidency/28799529.html) Russia’s top election official says that opposition politician Aleksei Navalny will not be eligible to run for office until about 2028. Speaking at a youth festival in the southern city of Sochi, Central Election Commission chief Ella Pamfilova warned Navalny and […]

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Global Warming Threatens Moscow’s Arctic Development Plans and the Lives of People There

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, October 17, 2017) Some Russian officials, including Vladimir Putin, apparently believe that global warming will work to Russia’s ultimate benefit by allowing for crops over a larger portion of its territory; but in the shorter term, global warming is undermining Moscow’s plans to develop the Far North and even threatening the lives […]

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Interfax: Oreshkin sees positive foreign investor sentiment regarding Russian economy recovery

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – GORKY, Oct. 16) Russian Economic Development Minister Maxim Oreshkin said he saw positive sentiment among foreign investors regarding a recovery in the Russian economy. “Today’s meeting was definitely characterized by overall positive sentiment regarding the fact that the Russian economy has begun to recover and that economic growth has taken off. Companies feel this in their financials,” Oreshkin […]

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Interfax: Putin to say “something big” at Valdai next week – spokesman

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

(Interfax – October 13, 2017) President Vladimir Putin is to make a “very important” speech at the Valdai discussion club meeting next week, his press secretary Dmitry Peskov has said, privately-owned Russian news agency Interfax reported on 13 October. “Something really important is being prepared for his traditionally interesting address at the Valdai forum,” Peskov said. Putin, who attends the […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin at] Opening of Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly” – KremlinRu

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Podium Gesturing

(Kremlin.ru – October 14, 2017) Vladimir Putin delivered a speech at the opening ceremony of the 137th Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU). Before the Assembly the President met with members of the IPU Executive Committee. The President of Russia awarded the Order of Friendship to IPU President Saber Chowdhury. The Order was presented for a major contribution to the […]

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NEWSLINK: “A tale of two revolutions, or ‘decommunisation’, Ukrainian-style; Ukrainian politicians see their country’s Soviet heritage as a major obstacle on the way to abrave new world. It’s a shame they’re using the same revolutionary methods as the communists to deal with it.” – OpenDemocracy/ Sergey Rumyantsev

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion » Read more

NEWSLINK: “If Russia can create fake ‘Black Lives Matter’ accounts, who will next?” – Washington Post/ Anne Applebaum

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

RUSSIALINK: “The Billionaire Adviser: A Story of Russia’s Anti-Corruption Campaign; The story of the arrest of Oleg Korshunov, deputy director of Russia’s prison system, looks at first glance like a victory in an anti-corruption campaign. But the truth is much more complex”  – Carnegie Moscow/ Olga Romanova 

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

“… Korshunov merely operated too blatantly, his detention is unlikely to change much, and he may eventually get free on parole …”  

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RUSSIALINK: “Waking the Russian Spirit of Urbanism; Urban renewal could become a new doctrine of patriotism” – Moscow Times/ Sergei Kapkov

Aerial View of Moscow From Beyond Stadium, file photo

“… They’ve looked around and realized that Russian cities are not nearly as beautiful as they could be, and in addition to amusement park rides and shish kebab stands, they can build skate parks and dance floors. And the harsh Russian climate is no obstacle to developing urban cycling. …”  

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RUSSIA & UKRAINE – Johnson’s Russia List table of contents :: JRL 2017-195 :: Monday, 16 October 2017

St. Basil's Domes

To inquire about a subscription to the full Johnson’s Russia List e-mail newsletter, e-mail David Johnson at davidjohnson@starpower.net [check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2017-#195 Monday, 16 October 2017 A project sponsored through the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies (IERES) at The George Washington University’s Elliott […]

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Presidentialism, Even More than Putin, is Russia’s Curse, Golosov Says

Putin Descending a Staircase

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, October 12, 2017) The real threat to Russia’s future development, Grigory Golosov argues, lies not in the various repressive actions Vladimir Putin has taken but in the presidential system enshrined in the Russian Constitution which makes “any strong president” into “a potential Putin.” Writing in the Takiye Dela portal today, the St. […]

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The Evolution of Homo Sovieticus to Putin’s Man; The tumultuous decades have left their mark on Russians’ inner life

File Photo of Crowd in Russia Including Person Waving Russian Flag with Eagle

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Eva Hartog, Lev Gudkov – October 13, 2017) [Text with charts themoscowtimes.com/articles/the-evolution-of-homo-sovieticus-to-putins-man-59189] Lev Gudkov remembers sitting in his Moscow office as a young sociologist, surrounded by stacks of letters. It was 1989, and for the first time after decades of hushed conversation around kitchen tables, Russians had been asked for their opinions on a range […]

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A Corruption Trial Splits the Kremlin; The former economy minister got caught in a sting, and no one knows where Putin stands.

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

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Evgenia Pismennaya, Ilya Arkhipov, Henry Meyer, Irina Reznik – October 11, 2017) The first prosecution of a minister for graft under Russian President Vladimir Putin contains the kind of details you’d expect in a spy novel, from hidden microphones and coded hand signals to homemade sausages and a bag stuffed with cash. The case against former […]

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Kremlin had Its Reasons for Not Cracking Down Harder on Latest Protests, Commentators Say

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

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, October 10, 2017) The relative paucity of detentions in Moscow during the anti-Putin Navalny demonstrations last weekend, despite the much larger and more brutal actions of the authorities beyond the ring road, has generated a lively discussion as to why the Kremlin didn’t come down harder. Two commentators, Yekatarina Vinokurova of Znak […]

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Navalny Fund Publishes Retractions in Usmanov Libel Suit

Alisher Usmanov file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – October 11, 2017) The Anti-Corruption Foundation has complied with a court order to publish retractions related to a video critical of Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. Foundation founder and opposition leader Alexei Navalny was sued for libel in April by Uzbekistan-born Russian oligarch Alisher Usmanov over allegations of bribery. Navalny is currently serving a 20-day jail […]

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NEWSWATCH: “European University at St Petersburg faces research-only future. With latest application for teaching licence rejected in long-running battle with authorities, time is running out to start the new academic year” – Times Higher Education (UK)

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

“Russia’s ‘European’ university is contemplating a future as a research-only institution …. The European University at St Petersburg, a private postgraduate institution, has been wrangling with the government since last year, when it endured a series of snap inspections by authorities and had its teaching licence suspended. Officials claimed that EUSP, which has just 250 students and offers courses in the […]

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NEWSWATCH: “A Bernie Sanders campaign veteran advises a surging opposition movement in Russia” – Washington Post/ Andrew Roth

Arm and Torso of Person in Brown Sweater Placing Paper Ballot into Ballot Box

“Vitali Shkliarov, a 41-year-old political operative born in Belarus, speaks the gospel of Bernie Sanders in the style of a Silicon Valley executive. Technology, he says, is a key to access …. The idea got a test drive in Moscow’s recent municipal elections … the veteran of the Sanders and … Obama campaigns sees it as part of a worldwide movement. * […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin at] Meeting with Chairperson of the Central Election Commission Ella Pamfilova” – KremlinRu

Russia Regions Map

(Kremlin.ru – October 9, 2017) Vladimir Putin had a working meeting with Chairperson of the Central Election Commission Ella Pamfilova, who informed the President of the outcomes of elections that took place on the unified voting day, September 10, 2017. President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Ms Pamfilova, could you share your assessment of the outcomes of the unified voting day? […]

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Painting The Kremlin Facade

Kremlin and River

(Article ©2017 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Oct. 9, 2017 – also appeared at rferl.org/a/daily-vertical-putin-65-brezhnev/28782055.html) So Vladimir Putin turned 65 this past weekend, which, incidentally, is longer than 43 percent of Russian men can expect to live according to a new World Bank report. Last month, he surpassed Leonid Brezhnev and became Russia’s longest ruling leader since […]

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Russian Science in Crisis, Says New Academy of Sciences Chief

File Photo of Test Tubes with Algae Displaying Different Colors, Part of U.S. Energy-Related Research; from nrel.gov

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – October 9, 2017) Russian science is in a crisis state, according to the new head of the country’s Academy of Sciences. The physicist Alexander Sergeyev was approved by President Vladimir Putin as the academy’s new president after his election late last month. In an interview published Monday by the Rossiyskaya Gazeta newspaper, Sergeyev said that […]

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NEWSLINK: “For Putin’s 65th Birthday, Insights From America’s Top Experts on Russia” – RussiaMatters/

Putin at Desk

“Russian President Vladimir Putin turns 65 this Saturday, Oct. 7. He is already Russia’s longest-serving leader since Stalin (if you count his time as prime minister), but still reportedly plans to run and all but certainly get re-elected for another six-year term in March 2018. Who is Mr. Putin? What are his views, policies and goals, and how have they […]

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RUSSIALINK: “[Putin at] Russian Energy Week Forum plenary session” – KremlinRu

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

[This excerpt includes only the comments by Putin] [Click here for Q&A and video with English interpretation: en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/55767] Vladimir Putin attended a plenary session of the first Russian Energy Week (REW) Energy Efficiency and Energy Development International Forum. Following the plenary session, Vladimir Putin had a brief meeting with foreign guests of the Russian Energy Week who arrived in Moscow to […]

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Putin Budget Points to Another Lost Decade for Russia, ‘Nezavisimaya Gazeta’ Says

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

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, October 4m 2017) The three-year budget the Russian government has proposed suggests that Russia will continue to stagnate, poverty will continue to grow, and the country will fall further and further behind the developed world and even its nearest neighbors, according to the editors of Nezavisimaya gazeta. In a lead article today, […]

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The Best Quotes From Putin at the Russian Energy Week Forum

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

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – October 4, 2017) President Vladimir Putin took part in the Russian Energy Week forum in Moscow on Wednesday, where he spoke about North Korea, his relationship with U.S. President Donald Trump and electric cars. Here are some of the highlights: On the elections next year – “I haven’t decided whether I’m going to run at […]

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RUSSIA & UKRAINE – Johnson’s Russia List table of contents :: JRL 2017-189 ::Thursday, 5 October 2017

St. Basil's Domes

To inquire about a subscription to the full Johnson’s Russia List e-mail newsletter, e-mail David Johnson at davidjohnson@starpower.net [check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2017-#189 Thursday, 5 October 2017 A project sponsored through the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies (IERES) at The George Washington University’s Elliott School […]

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NEWSLINK: “Russian Studies is Thriving, not Dying; At least in Political Science, Russian studies is alive and well” – The National Interest/ Timothy Frye

Bookcase file photo, adapted from image at nlm.nih.gov

“As U.S.-Russian relations continue to spiral downwards, popular commentators decry the lack of expertise on Russia in the United States. … The only problem is that Russian studies is thriving, at least in Political Science, the field I know best. … There are many reasons for the all too simplistic treatments found in much popular discourse about Russia from the […]

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Interfax: U.S.-led coalition stages fatal provocations against Russian troops in Syria – Lavrov

Sergei Lavrov file photo

MOSCOW. Oct 4 (Interfax) – The U.S.-led coalition in Syria inspires terrorists into attacks and stages fatal provocations against Russian servicemen, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said. “The US-led forces’ activities in Syria cause many questions. In some cases these forces mount allegedly accidental strikes against the Syrian Armed Forces, after which the Islamic State counterattacks, in other cases they […]

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Interfax: Russian authorities know how to address gap between rich, poor – Putin

Hands Opening Envelope Containing Cash

MOSCOW. Oct 4 (Interfax) – The widening gap between the rich and the poor is “a real problem” for Russia, but there is an understanding how to address it, Russian President Vladimir Putin said. “With regard to the ‘scissors’ between rich and low-income people. This is a real problem on which we definitely should be working,” Putin said at the […]

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[1993] NEWSWATCH: “Yeltsin crushes revolt; Parliament taken in tank battle; Opposition parties and newspapers banned” – The Guardian (UK)/ Jonathan Steele, David Hearst [from Oct. 5, 1993]

Boris Yeltsin and Vladimir Putin

[From 1993 archived article:] “President Boris Yeltsin moved swiftly last night to stamp his absolute power on Russia by suspending a range of political movements and closing opposition newspapers after the surrender of his main parliamentary opponents in the wake of the assault on the Russian White House. * * *  After a grisly 10-hour gun battle in which tanks punched […]

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Some Russian Officials Now Feel Able to Ignore Putin’s Wishes, Kolesnikov and Albats Say

File Photo of Vladimir Putin Sitting at Desk

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, October 2, 2017) The Russian government agency responsible for supervising educational and scientific institutions has refused to extend the license of St. Petersburg’s European University despite Vladimir Putin’s intervention not once but three times in support of that institution. That raises questions about why that agency and the governor of the Northern […]

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New York Times Covers Russia [Headlines & Links]

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

October 3, 2017 ‘Look Up! Sputnik!’ 60 Years Later By MICHAEL KHODARKOVSKY https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/03/opinion/sputnik-cold-war-space-race.html [“America’s response in 1957 was a huge investment in space technologies; within 12 years, it had put the first men on the moon. Today, too, a major investment in cybersecurity by a much wealthier and more innovative West might remind Moscow that it cannot afford or win […]

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NEWSWATCH: “The most controversial, anticipated film in years is coming soon to Russia. What’s it actually about? [Re: ‘Matilda’]” – Meduza/ Anton Dolin/ translation Kevin Rothrock

File Photo of Reel of Film

“When it comes to cultural scandals in contemporary Russia, it’s hard to find anything so controversial as “Matilda,” a new film by Alexey Uchitel about the love affair between Nicholas Romanov, when he was still heir to the tsarist empire, and Matilda Kshesinskaya, a celebrated ballerina …. A campaign against the movie has raged for almost a year … * * […]

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Interfax: Kremlin calls wave of governors’ dismissals ‘rotation process’

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

MOSCOW. Oct 2 (Interfax) – Russian presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov has connected the appearance of a large amount of information about dismissals of governors to a rotation period. “No doubt, there is a process of rotation taking place in the body of governors now. Naturally, this leads to a huge amount of information flows,” Peskov said, when asked about […]

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NEWSLINK: “‘We are nothing, let us be all.’ The century of revolution. The first communist revolution had almost as many consequences for the rest of the world as it did for Russia itself. Its demise has brought about another type of universalism: capitalist globalisation.” – Le Monde Diplomatique/ Serge Halimi

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

“… The ‘end of communism’ seemed to settle the great debate that opposed the main currents of the international left after the Russian Revolution, the defeat of one of the protagonists entailing the victory of the other, social democracy’s revenge on its boisterous sibling. That triumph was short-lived. The centenary of the storming of the Winter Palace is coinciding with […]

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Putin Now Looking to History Rather than to the Russian People, Stanovaya Says

Putin Descending a Staircase

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, September 27, 2017) Vladimir Putin views the upcoming presidential elections as being not so much about legitimizing him as the leader of the Russian people but rather as a ruler “who wants to write him name down in history,” according to Tatyana Stanovaya; and that shift will affect both the campaign and […]

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Interfax: Poll shows quarter of Russians say political, economic protests possible

Moscow Protest File Photo

(Interfax – MOSCOW – September 28, 2017) An overwhelming majority of Russians, 69 percent, believe that mass protests against deteriorating living standards or in defense of people’s rights are unlikely in Russia, the Levada Analytical Center told Interfax, down from 74 percent in February. Twenty-six percent of the 1,600 respondents polled in 137 populated localities in 48 regions on Sept. […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “Chemical disarmament completed in Russia”- KremlinRu

Chemical Weapons Hazard Symbol, adapted from image at dni.gov

(Kremlin.ru – September 27, 2017) The President listened to a report via videoconference on the destruction of Russia’s last remaining chemical weapons. Mikhail Babich, Presidential Plenipotentiary Envoy to the Volga Federal District and Chairman of the State Commission for Chemical Disarmament, reported to President Vladimir Putin on the completion of chemical disarmament ahead of schedule. Also in attendance at the […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: [Putin at] Meeting with Government members – KremlinRu

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

(Kremlin.ru – September 27, 2017) President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, colleagues. Today we will primarily discuss the budget, because work on it is wrapping up and the draft will be submitted to the State Duma soon. I will give you more details in a minute. But I would like to first address the situation around VIM-Avia airline. Yesterday, […]

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Another Worrying Sign For Russia’s Dire Demographics

Russian Migrant Workers file photo

(Article ©2017 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Tom Balmforth – MOSCOW – September 27, 2017 – article also appeared at rferl.org/a/russia-population-decline-labor-oreshkin/28760413.html) Many advanced economies are wondering how breakthroughs in technology could leave whole swaths of the population unemployed, but in Russia the government is pondering how to fill jobs with a dramatically shrinking work force. Economy Minister […]

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NEWSWATCH: “Yandex, a Russian Success Story and Putin’s High-Tech Tiger” – Moscow Times/ Elizaveta Osetinskaya

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

“Last week, Yandex, the giant search engine and a symbol of Russian tech prowess, celebrated its 20-year anniversary. Its founder Arkady Volozh played host to … Putin, who praised Yandex at its stylish glass headquarters in downtown Moscow. … Bloggers sarcastically pointed out that the Russian leader famously doesn’t use the internet and once described it as the brainchild of the […]

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