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27.10.20 Is Russia’s Housing Market Facing A Coronavirus Bubble?
The Moscow Times
Later this week, one of the fastest growing Russian businesses of the last decade will launch on the Moscow stock market — the latest in a small flurry of Russian public offerings set to close out the year. Property developer Samolet was founded just eight years ago, but it has grown aggressively, building more than two million square meters of apartment space in the hottest part of Russia’s housing market — Moscow and its surrounding suburbs. The company has another 15 million square meters in its land bank for development over the coming decades, and this week’s initial public offering (IPO) could value the firm at as much as $860 million. Read more 
27.10.20 Russia’s Threat… Of Peace
Sputnik
Here we go again. Joe Biden is whipping up Russophobia by claiming that Russia is the “biggest threat” to American security. In a media interview at the weekend, the Democrat politician said: “I think the biggest threat to America right now in terms of breaking up our – our security and our alliances is Russia.” That a presidential candidate can come out with such outlandish Cold War-style Red Scare nonsense in 2020 – 30 years after the Soviet Union broke up – is an amazing feat of brainwashing. It’s not just Biden, though. Last week in their TV debate, Donald Trump, the incumbent Republican president, accused Russia of meddling in US affairs by sponsoring Biden. So, apparently, Russia is the bad guy, as far as both parties in the US are concerned. Trying to smear your opponents? Then label them as treasonous puppets for Russia. Read more 
26.10.20 Daily Coronavirus Numbers Top 17,000 In Russia Again
Interfax
The daily growth in coronavirus numbers has exceeded 17,000 in Russia again, and 219 patients died of coronavirus in the past 24 hours, the coronavirus response headquarters said in a statement on Monday. "Over the past day, 17,347 Covid-19 cases were confirmed in 85 regions of Russia, including 4,803 active asymptomatic cases (27.7%)," the headquarters said. The daily infections surpassed 17,000 in Russia for the first time on October 23. Russia reported 16,521 new cases on Saturday, and 16,710 on Sunday. The growth is still the steepest in Moscow, which reported 5,224 coronavirus cases on Thursday, as against over 4,455 the day before. Read more 
26.10.20 Moscow Ready Not To Deploy 9M729 Missiles In European Russia, Putin Says
TASS
Russian President Vladimir Putin has said Russia is prepared to refrain from deploying in its European part the 9M729 missiles, which Washington regards as a violation of the Intermediate Nuclear Forces Treaty, but on the condition of reciprocal steps by the NATO countries. In that connection, Putin suggested considering different verification measures, including those regarding the Aegis Ashore systems at US and NATO bases in Europe and Russia's facilities in the Kaliningrad Region. Read more 
26.10.20 Putin Offers NATO Site Inspections To Avoid Missile Buildup
AP
Russian President Vladimir Putin proposed Monday that NATO and Russia should conduct mutual inspections of each other’s military bases to secure a moratorium on the deployment of new missiles in Europe following last year’s demise of a U.S.-Russian nuclear arms pact. The United States and Russia both pulled out of the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty last year, blaming each other for violations. Nevertheless, Putin has pledged not to deploy the weapons that were outlawed by the treaty, for as long as the U.S. doesn’t deploy such arms to Europe. Read more 
26.10.20 1 In 5 Russian Lawmakers Have Had Coronavirus
The Moscow Times
At least one out of every five Russian lawmakers currently have or have had coronavirus, the speaker of Russia’s lower house of parliament told President Vladimir Putin on Monday. The 450-member State Duma went partially remote last month to limit the spread of Covid-19 after more than a dozen federal lawmakers were hospitalized with the infection. Previously, Duma speaker Vyacheslav Volodin called on deputies at higher risk of a severe Covid-19 infection to work remotely from their offices. Read more 
26.10.20 New Japanese Prime Minister Suga Says Determined To Resolve Dispute With Russia
Sputnik
Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said at his policy speech to parliament on Monday that his government will seek to resolve the territorial dispute with Russia. Japan claims four islands in the Kuril Island chain, referring to them as northern territories. The Kuril Islands dispute has been souring Moscow-Tokyo relations for decades and serves as the main stumbling block to signing a permanent WWII peace treaty. A group of four islands, namely Iturup, Kunashir, Shikotan and Habomai, is collectively referred to as the Southern Kurils by Russia and the Northern Territories by Japan. Russia insists that its sovereignty over the islands, which legally became a part of the USSR after WWII, is undisputed. In a separate development, the Japanese Prime Minister pledged to make his country carbon neutral by 2050. Read more 
25.10.20 Ten Sailors Rescued, Three More Missing After Blast On Tanker In Sea Of Azov
TASS
Ten sailors have been rescued, but three more are missing after an explosion on a tanker in the Sea of Azov, the Russian Federal Agency for Maritime and River Transport told TASS on Saturday. "The tanker was empty, but purportedly, there was an explosion of residual fuel vapor. Ten people have been rescued. Three are missing. A search operation is underway," the spokesperson said. Read more 
25.10.20 UK Has Mounted Covert Attacks Against Russian Leadership, Says Ex-mandarin
AP
Britain has carried a series of covert attacks on Russia’s leaders and their allies, the former cabinet secretary has disclosed. Mark Sedwill said the UK had sought to exploit Moscow’s “vulnerabilities”, including through the deployment of its recently declared offensive cyber-capability. He said the aim of such actions had been to “impose a price greater than one they might have expected” in response to aggressive Russian behaviour. Read more 
24.10.20 Student Sentenced To 6 Years For Attempted Classmates Shooting
TASS
The Moscow Region’s Zaraysk sentence Boris Banin, a student of Lukhovitsy College of Agriculture and Industry, who planned an attack on his classmates, to six years in prison, the court press service said. "By ruling of the Zaraysk city court, Boris Banin found guilty of attempted murder of two or more people. He is sentence to six years in penal colony and restriction of freedom for one year," the press service said. Read more 
24.10.20 Death Of Animals In Russia's Kamchatka Wasn't Due To Manmade Causes
Interfax
The recent death of animals in Kamchatka had natural causes, the theory that it was a manmade disaster has been ruled out, Russian Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Dmitry Kobylkin said. "No, it's already absolutely clear that it wasn't a manmade disaster. Excluding manmade factors, it could have been an earthquake, volcanoes, or some manifestation such as a rupture, [...] in actual fact, there were lots of theories at the very beginning, and by excluding different elements, including those checked in the samples that were taken in water, in the soil in the rivers, we ourselves, the Federal Service for Supervision of Natural Resources [Rosprirodnadzor] concluded that it was not a manmade accident, that we didn't find a spill of either petroleum products or any other serious concentrations that could have caused the mass death of marine life," Kobylkin said in an interview with the Rossiya-24 (VGTRK) television channel. Read more 
24.10.20 Russia Continued Developing Novichok After Program's Official Closure
The Moscow Times
Russian military scientists continued working on the Novichok nerve agent’s development long after Moscow said it destroyed its chemical weapons stockpiles, an international investigation said Friday. The investigation comes amid mounting questions in the West over Russia’s alleged use of chemical weapons on foreign and domestic soil, accusations that Moscow denies. The European Union and Britain have slapped sanctions on Russia over the suspected Novichok poisonings of a former Russian double agent in Britain in 2018 and Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny this summer. Read more 
24.10.20 ‘I Will Remember Her Ashes Forever’
Meduza
On October 2, 2020, 47-year-old “KozaPress” editor-in-chief Irina Slavina killed herself by self-immolation in front of Nizhny Novgorod’s police headquarters. Before her suicide, in a post on Facebook, Slavina blamed the Russian Federation for her death. Her family, friends, and colleagues, who believe Slavina was driven to self-immolation by the authorities’ constant harassment, are calling it an act of heroism. Meduza special correspondent Kristina Safonova spent several days in Nizhny Novgorod to learn how the city and those who knew Slavina are coping with her death, and to find out how people are making sense of such a dramatic suicide. Read more 
24.10.20 In Moscow Children Infect Family Members 1.5 Times More Often Than Adults
TASS
Specialists have established that children infect the family members with the coronavirus 1.5 times more often than adults, the capital anti-coronavirus crisis center reported. "Children transmit the coronavirus infection to the relatives in the same household 1.5 times more often than adults. Based on analytical data obtained as a result of epidemiological investigation of each case, over the period from June 1 to October 21, 17% of children infected with the coronavirus regardless of seriousness of the course of the disease, subsequently infected the family members in the same household. Among the affected adult population the infection was transmitted by only 11%," the crisis center said. Read more 
24.10.20 ‘Straight From Our Homes To The Cemetery’
Meduza
A second wave of coronavirus infections is currently hammering Russia. On October 20, more than 16,000 new cases were registered in a single day for the first time. Most of the cases are in Moscow, St. Petersburg, and other large cities, but the disease is spreading throughout rural Russia, as well. Meduza reports how local residents are trying to fight the disease with practically no help from doctors, and why officials sometimes use unusual methods to curb the spread. Read more 
23.10.20 Russian Spymaster Says Belarus Protests Fueled From Abroad
AP
Russia’s foreign intelligence chief said Thursday during a visit to Belarus that the 2 1/2 months of protests since the country’s presidential election have been fomented from abroad. Belarus has been rocked by massive demonstrations against authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko’s reelection to a sixth term in an Aug. 9 vote that the opposition argues was rigged. Lukashenko, who has ruled the ex-Soviet nation with an iron fist for more than 26 years, has accused the United States and its allies of fueling the protests. Sergei Naryshkin, the director of Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service, echoed the Belarusian leader’s claims during a visit to the capital, Minsk. Belarus is a former Soviet republic that maintains close economic ties with Moscow. Read more 
23.10.20 Russia-China Military Alliance ‘Quite Possible,’ Putin Says
The Moscow Times
President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that a future military alliance with China can’t be ruled out but is not needed right now, the Associated Press reported. Speaking at the Valdai Discussion Club, Putin said that Russia has stepped up military cooperation with China through joint military exercises and the sharing of sensitive Russian military technologies. “Without any doubt, our cooperation with China is bolstering the defense capability of China’s army,” Putin said via videoconference with international foreign policy experts.
Read more 
23.10.20 EU Slaps Sanctions On 2 Russians Over Germany Cyberattack
AP
The European Union on Thursday imposed sanctions on two Russian officials and part of Russia’s GRU military intelligence agency over a cyberattack against the German parliament in 2015. EU headquarters said in a statement that travel bans and asset freezes have been imposed on the two men: Igor Kostyukov, head of the Main Directorate of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, and Dmitry Badin, a military intelligence officer. The EU said that Badin, who is also being sought by U.S. authorities, was part of a team that launched the attacks on the Bundestag. Read more 
23.10.20 Putin Says Karabakh Deaths Soaring As Diplomats Scramble
The Moscow Times
Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that weeks of fighting over the mountainous Nagorno-Karabakh province had left close to 5,000 people dead as world leaders scrambled to broker a truce. The disputed region in Azerbaijan is controlled by Armenian separatists backed by Yerevan, who declared independence as the Soviet Union fell in a conflict that erupted again into full-scale fighting last month. Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev have rebuffed calls for peace and fighters on the ground have left two ceasefires in tatters after accusing the other side of violations. Read more 
23.10.20 Putin Says He Allowed Foe Navalny To Get Treatment Abroad
AP
Russian President Vladimir Putin rejected accusations of the Kremlin’s involvement in the poisoning of opposition leader Alexei Navalny, saying Thursday that he personally allowed his political foe to be flown to Germany for treatment. Navalny, an anti-corruption investigator and Putin’s most visible and determined opponent, fell ill on Aug. 20 during a domestic flight in Russia and was flown to Germany two days later. He is still recovering there. Tests conducted at labs designated by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons confirmed that the poison used on Navalny was a Soviet-era Novichok nerve agent. Navalny asserted that his poisoning only could have been ordered by spymasters who wouldn’t have made such decisions without Putin’s personal involvement. Read more 
22.10.20 Russia Not Planning Lockdowns Despite Record High COVID-19 Deaths
Reuters
Russia is not planning to impose any further lockdowns to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, the Kremlin said on Wednesday, after it notched up a record daily death toll of 317. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said no harsh restrictions were required to contain the virus, saying safety precautions, hygiene and certain curbs imposed by local authorities were key. Read more 
22.10.20 Snowden Gets Unlimited Residency Permit In Russia
Interfax
Former CIA employee Edward Snowden has received a permit for unlimited residency in Russia, lawyer Anatoly Kucherena said. "Today, the Russian migration services issued Snowden a Russian residency permit on an unlimited basis," Kucherena told Interfax on Thursday. Read more 
22.10.20 Trio Who Lived On Space Station Return To Earth Safely
AP
A trio of space travelers safely returned to Earth on Thursday after a six-month mission on the International Space Station. The Soyuz MS-16 capsule carrying NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy, and Roscosmos’ Anatoly Ivanishin and Ivan Vagner landed on the steppes of Kazakhstan southeast of the town of Dzhezkazgan at 7:54 a.m. (2:54 GMT) Thursday. After a brief medical checkup, the three will be taken by helicopters to Dzhezkazgan from where they will depart home. Cassidy will board a NASA plane back to Houston, while Vagner and Ivanishin will fly home to Star City, Russia. Read more 
22.10.20 Alarm As Arctic Sea Ice Not Yet Freezing At Latest Date On Record
The Guardian
For the first time since records began, the main nursery of Arctic sea ice in Siberia has yet to start freezing in late October.
The delayed annual freeze in the Laptev Sea has been caused by freakishly protracted warmth in northern Russia and the intrusion of Atlantic waters, say climate scientists who warn of possible knock-on effects across the polar region. Ocean temperatures in the area recently climbed to more than 5C above average, following a record breaking heatwave and the unusually early decline of last winter’s sea ice. Read more 
22.10.20 Russia To Probe Virus Deaths Caused By Oxygen Shortage
The Moscow Times
At least 13 coronavirus patients were reported to have died when their oxygen supply ran out at a hospital in southern Russia last week. Russia’s health watchdog said Wednesday that its affiliate in the Rostov region was looking into the reports that the patients died due to a lack of oxygen in their hospital on Oct. 12. The Kremlin said it was confident that regional authorities would conduct an urgent investigation into the “alarming” report. Read more 
22.10.20 Russian Spy Chief Flies Into Belarus In Show Of Support For Embattled Leader
Reuters
The head of Russia’s SVR foreign intelligence service made a surprise visit to Belarus on Thursday in what looked like a show of support by Moscow for veteran leader Alexander Lukashenko, a close ally who is under pressure to step down. TV footage released by Belarusian state showed Sergei Naryshkin, the head of my Russia’s SVR, smiling broadly as Lukashenko told him the two countries were facing a difficult situation and had few international allies. Read more 
21.10.20 US Ready To Meet Immediately With Russia To Finalize New START Agreement
TASS
The United States is ready to hold a meeting immediately with Russia to finalize the agreement to extend the Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (New START), spokesperson for the US State Department Morgan Ortagus said in a statement Tuesday. "We appreciate the Russian Federation’s willingness to make progress on the issue of nuclear arms control. The United States is prepared to meet immediately to finalize a verifiable agreement. We expect Russia to empower its diplomats to do the same," she said. Read more 
21.10.20 US, Russia Appear Set To Extend Last Remaining Nuclear Pact
AP
The United States and Russia inched closer Tuesday to a deal to extend their last remaining arms control pact, after U.S. threats to allow the deal to expire early next year. The two sides signaled they are ready to accept compromises to salvage the New START treaty just two weeks ahead of the U.S. presidential election in which President Donald Trump faces a strong challenge from former Vice President Joe Biden, whose campaign has accused Trump of being soft on Russia. Read more 
21.10.20 Russia Hits Back At West Over Cyberattacks: Who Wins War Of Words?
Forbes
The Kremlin has responded to charges of cyberattacks by accusing the United States and United Kingdom of trying to blame Russia "for just everything." It's a new battle in the war of words. Commenting on the indictment that the U.S. Justice Department unsealed October 19, President Vladimir Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said, in remarks reported by TASS, "In this regard, examples of blatant Russophobia come to mind, which have nothing to do with reality." Read more 
21.10.20 Slight Arctic Warming Could Trigger Abrupt Permafrost Collapse
The Moscow Times
A few degrees of warming in the Arctic could trigger an abrupt thaw of the permafrost that makes up two-thirds of Russia’s landmass and a subsequent climate change feedback loop, according to a new study based on ancient warming episodes. Three of the region’s largest warming events in the past 27,000 years coincided with rapidly thawing and collapsing permafrost, said the study published Friday in the Science Advances journal. Its findings are based on an analysis of 8-meter sediment cores retrieved from the bottom of the Arctic Ocean off of Eastern Siberia by a team of Russian, Swedish and U.S. scientists in 2014. Read more 
21.10.20 German Businessman Charged Over Exports To Russian Military
AP
A German businessman and an alleged accomplice have been charged over the delivery of machinery to a company linked to the Russian military in violation of European Union sanctions, German prosecutors said Tuesday. The main suspect, identified only as Alexander S. in line with German privacy rules, is charged with seven counts of violating export laws and accused of acting for foreign intelligence. He is accused of delivering machine tools to an unidentified state-run defense company that makes missile systems for the Russian army, of giving the names of sham recipients and making false declarations about the tools’ intended use. Read more 
20.10.20 6 Russian Military Officers Charged In Vast Hacking Campaign
AP
The Justice Department announced charges Monday against Russian intelligence officers in cyberattacks that targeted a French presidential election, the Winter Olympics in South Korea and American businesses. The case implicates the same Kremlin unit that interfered in the 2016 U.S. elections, but is not related to the November vote. The indictment accuses the six defendants, all said to be current and former officers in the Russian military intelligence agency known as the GRU, of hacks that prosecutors say were aimed at furthering the Kremlin’s geopolitical interests and in destabilizing or punishing perceived enemies. All told, the attacks caused billions of dollars in losses and disrupted a broad cross-section of life, including health care in Pennsylvania, a power grid serving hundreds of thousands of customers in Ukraine and a French election that saw the late-stage disclosure of hacked emails. Read more 
20.10.20 Angels And Artillery: A Cathedral To Russia's New National Identity
The Guardian
Angels hover above artillery, religious images are adorned with Kalashnikovs and the Virgin Mary strikes a pose reminiscent of a Soviet second world war poster. The imagery inside Russia’s vast Cathedral of the Armed Forces blends militarism, patriotism and Orthodox Christianity to breathtaking and highly controversial effect. An hour’s drive from Moscow, the cathedral has a metallic, khaki-green exterior, topped with golden domes and crosses that rise to 95 metres (312ft). Inside is the largest amount of mosaic of any church in the world, with many of the work depicting battles from Russian history and the second world war in particular. Read more 
20.10.20 Russian Cabinet Rejects Bill Outlining Changes To The Family Code Impacting Children’s And Transgender Rights
Meduza
Russia’s Government Commission on Legislative Activities has rejected conservative Senator Elena Mizulina’s draft law “aimed at strengthening the institution of the family.” The commission believes that the changes outlined in the bill would tip the balance “towards the rights of parents” at the expense of children’s rights. A draft of the cabinet’s decision was obtained by TASS on Tuesday, October 20. Read more 
20.10.20 Ex-Vedomosti Journalists’ VTimes News Website Goes Live
The Moscow Times
A group of former Vedomosti business daily senior editors and journalists has launched a new Russian-language news website Tuesday in partnership with The Moscow Times. The project came to life after the appointment of a pro-Kremlin editor-in-chief at Vedomosti sparked accusations of censorship and a mass resignation earlier this year. Read more 
20.10.20 Daily Number Of Covid-19 Cases In Russia Exceeds 16,000 For First Time Since Pandemic Started
Interfax
Russia has recorded its highest daily number of new Covid-19 cases since the onset of the pandemic and has registered 269 associated deaths in the past 24 hours, the coronavirus response headquarters said on Tuesday. "Over the past day, 16,319 new Covid-19 cases were confirmed in 84 regions of Russia, including 4,664 active asymptomatic cases (28.6%)," the headquarters said. The prevalence of Covid-19 began growing in Russia in September, when the daily number of new infections increased from 5,000 to 10,000 by the beginning of October and then soared to up to 15,000 new cases per day over the subsequent two weeks, nearing 16,000 on October 19. Read more 
19.10.20 Trial Of Russian Charged In Bitcoin Fraud Begins In Paris
AP
The trial of a Russian man alleged to have used ransomware in a 135 million euros ($157 million) bitcoin fraud will begin Monday. Alexander Vinnik, who is also wanted in the United States and in Russia, faces up to ten years in prison at his Paris trial over charges of extortion, money laundering and criminal association. French prosecutors say Vinnik was one of the creators of malware called “Locky” which was delivered through email. If downloaded, the recipient’s data was encrypted and they were asked to pay a ransom in bitcoin to free it. Read more 
19.10.20 Moscow Mayor: Return To Full Lockdown ‘Impossible’
The Moscow Times
Moscow will not return to a full coronavirus lockdown like it did in spring as long as residents abide by current restrictions, Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said Monday as new cases continued to rise. The epicenter of Russia’s Covid-19 outbreak, Moscow confirmed 5,376 new infections in the past 24 hours and almost 367,000 since the start of the pandemic. The city's daily cases have seen a nearly sevenfold increase in the past month, though the latest figures are still below the all-time high of 6,703 cases confirmed on May 11. Read more 
19.10.20 Rublev Wins St. Petersburg Title For 4th Of Season
AP
Andrey Rublev joined Novak Djokovic as the only men to win four tour singles titles in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season as he beat Borna Coric 7-6 (5), 6-4 on Sunday in the final of the St. Petersburg Open. Rublev came back from 5-2 down to win the first-set tiebreak with a five-point streak after the set went with serve. In the second set he broke Coric’s serve at 2-2 before holding in his next three service games to complete the win. Rublev didn’t face a single break point. Read more 
19.10.20 Russia Sets One-Day Coronavirus Record With Nearly 16K Cases
The Moscow Times
Russia confirmed 15,982 new Covid-19 cases Monday, bringing its official number of cases to 1,415,316 and breaking the country's record for new infections. The latest one-day record comes as Russia for the first time since the start of the pandemic confirmed more than 100,000 Covid-19 cases within a week. Russia’s national coronavirus information center said that more than one-quarter of the new cases are asymptomatic. A total of 179 people have died from Covid-19 in the past 24 hours. Russia’s official death toll stands at 24,366. Read more 
19.10.20 Former Norilsk Mayor Is Sentenced To Six Months Community Service For Negligence In Massive Oil Spill
Meduza
A court in Krasnoyarsk has convicted former Norilsk Mayor Rinat Akhmetchin of criminal negligence and sentenced him to six months of community service for his role in a massive oil leak this summer by a Nornickel subsidiary. The authorities will also garnish 15 percent of Akhmetchin’s salary. The trial was expedited because the ex-mayor confessed to the charges. In his closing statement to the court, according to the news agency TASS, former Mayor Akhmetchin said he never wanted to harm the people of Norilsk or the city itself. “All my work was intended only to improve the lives of people in this area,” he said. Read more 
19.10.20 Navalny Determined To Return To Russia Despite Kremlin Efforts To Keep Him Away
Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty
Russian opposition politician Aleksei Navalny says the Kremlin is doing everything in its power to prevent him from returning to Russia, but he still plans to go back. Navalny told U.S. broadcaster CBS in an interview that aired on October 18 that he is determined to go back in a couple of months and take up his work fighting corruption where he left off. Navalny spoke with the CBS News program 60 Minutes in Berlin, where he is recovering from a poisoning in August with a toxic chemical belonging to the Novichok group. He said he goes to rehab every day and still feels “a little wooden…because the body lost all flexibility.” Read more 
18.10.20 Russia Shuns Tough Restrictions Even As Infections Soar
AP
It’s Friday night in Moscow, and popular bars and restaurants in the city center are packed. No one except the staff is wearing a mask or bothers to keep their distance. There is little indication at all that Russia is being swept by a resurgence of coronavirus infections. “I believe that everyone will have the disease eventually,” says Dr. Alexandra Yerofeyeva, an internal medicine specialist at an insurance company, while sipping a cocktail at The Bix bar in Moscow. She adds cheerfully: “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.” Read more 
18.10.20 Suspect In French Teacher Beheading Was Chechen, Born In Moscow
The Moscow Times
The man suspected of beheading a French teacher who had shown his students cartoons of the prophet Mohammed was an 18-year-old born in Moscow and originating from Russia's southern region of Chechnya, a judicial source said on Saturday. Five more people have been detained over the murder on Friday outside Paris, including the parents of a child at the school where the teacher was working, bringing to nine the total number currently under arrest, said the source, who asked not to be named. Read more 
18.10.20 Covid-19 Disinformation: Why Russia’s Been Blamed For Bizarre Vaccine Conspiracy Theory
Forbes
The race to create—and then sell—a coronavirus vaccine is not just the number one priority in global healthcare. It is now a battleground in global politics. Even taking that into account, the latest reported development in the propaganda war surrounding this most keenly-contested competition is, frankly, bizarre. The Times of London published October 16 claims that a Russian disinformation campaign was underway to try to spread fear about the safety of a vaccine being developed at the University of Oxford. According to the paper's investigation, "pictures, memes and video clips", prepared in Russia, warn of a peculiar hazard faced by those deciding to receive the vaccine: it could turn them into monkeys. Read more 
18.10.20 Khabarovsk’s 99th Consecutive Protest In Support Of Ex-Governor Furgal Draws Around 500 People
Sputnik
About 500 people rallied in Russia's far-eastern city of Khabarovsk on Saturday in the 99th consecutive unauthorised demonstration in support of ex-governor Sergei Furgal. No security incidents or detentions took place in the now-routine event in the city, a Sputnik correspondent reports from the scene. Protesters chanted anti-government and pro-Furgal slogans. Citizens of the Far Eastern region have been protesting on a daily basis since 11 June, when popular local governor Sergei Furgal was arrested on suspicion of involvement in hired killings in the early 2000s. Khabarovsk residents claim the arrest was made on political grounds and constitutes an interference into regional affairs from Moscow. Read more 
17.10.20 Putin Proposes To Extend New START Without Preconditions For One Year Minimum
TASS
Russian President Vladimir Putin proposed to extend the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) for at least one year without any preconditions. He voiced this proposal during the Russian Security Council meeting Friday. "I have a proposal to extend the existing treaty without preconditions for one year, at least," the Russian leader said. "So that we could hold substantial talks on all parameters of the issues, regulated by treaties of this kind, so that we do not leave both our countries and all states of the world without such fundamental agreement as the New START," Putin underscored, addressing Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Read more 
17.10.20 White House Rejects Putin Response To US Arms Control Offer
AP
The U.S. and Russia on Friday rejected each other’s proposals for potentially salvaging the last remaining legal constraint on their strategic nuclear forces. President Vladimir Putin called for an unconditional extension of the soon-to-expire New START treaty, and the White House called that a “non-starter.” Adding an edginess to the diplomatic clash, President Donald Trump’s national security adviser, Robert O’Brien, suggested the Russians rethink their stance “before a costly arms race ensues.” Administration officials have previously alluded to building up nuclear forces if the treaty is abandoned, although the Pentagon has its hands full paying for a one-for-one replacement of older nuclear weapons. Read more 
17.10.20 Western Spies Privately Blame Russia's FSB For Alexei Navalny Poisoning
The Guardian
Western security agencies have privately concluded that the Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was poisoned by the country’s FSB domestic spy agency, in effect pointing the finger at the Kremlin for ordering the attack. The stark conclusion has been shared between London, Berlin and Paris, among others, and underpins the decision this week by the UK and the EU to target the FSB chief, Alexander Bortnikov, with sanctions. European leaders have been quick to accuse the Russian state of being responsible for Navalny’s poisoning in August, but remain reluctant to explicitly blame the agency they believe is responsible or President Vladimir Putin himself. Read more 
17.10.20 Tinkoff Scraps $5.5Bln Deal With Yandex, Shares Plunge
The Moscow Times
The proposed megamerger between Russia’s leading technology company Yandex and fast-growing challenger bank Tinkoff has been scrapped after the bank’s billionaire founder Oleg Tinkov walked away from the negotiations. In an announcement to the London Stock Exchange — where Tinkoff’s holding company TCS is listed — the bank said negotiations between the two sides had been “terminated, effective immediately.” Yandex and Tinkoff previously announced they had reached an “agreement in principle” for the tech giant to take over the bank in a $5.5 billion cash-and-shares deal. Read more 
17.10.20 Family Of Russian Journalist Who Self-immolated Plans To Continue Work On The Media Outlet She Founded
Meduza
The family of Russian journalist Irina Slavina, who self-immolated outside of the police headquarters in Nizhny Novgorod on October 2, have published an open letter stating that they plan to continue work on the publication she founded, Koza.Press. In the letter, Irina Slavina’s family placed the blame for her suicide on the security forces, who organized “systematic pressure on her as a journalist and a person.” The letter underscores that the family will seek to bring those responsible to justice. Read more 
17.10.20 Buried At The Kremlin Wall: American ‘Hero’ Of Lenin’s Communists
Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty
John Reed wrote the most famous account of Russia’s Bolshevik Revolution before he died young and disillusioned in Moscow 100 years ago. Read more 
17.10.20 Toxic Spill Kills 95% Of Marine Life In Russian Region Close To Alaska
Forbes
A toxic spill is suspected for causing the deaths of thousands of sea creatures along a 25 mile stretch of coast in Russia’s Far East next to a UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site. The cause of the spill is being investigated and a joint WWF-Greenpeace team arrived last week to conduct an investigation into the leak in the Kamchatka region of Eastern Russia, just across the Bering Sea from Alaska, using underwater drone cameras and advanced sampling techniques. Read more 
17.10.20 Russia Sets New Daily Coronavirus Record With Over 15K Cases
The Moscow Times
Russia confirmed 15,150 cases of the novel coronavirus Friday, a new daily record since the start of the pandemic as authorities grapple with the onset of a second wave. This is the first time that Russia has confirmed more than 15,000 Covid-19 infections in a single day. Friday's increase pushed the overall number of Covid-19 cases in Russia to 1,369,313, the fourth-highest in the world.
Read more 
16.10.20 EU Imposes Sanctions On 6 Persons, 1 Research Center Over Navalny Case
Interfax
The European Union has imposed sanctions on six persons and the State Scientific Research Institute for Organic Chemistry and Technology in connection with the incident involving Russian opposition activist Alexei Navalny, the EU Official Journal reported on Thursday. The sanctions have been imposed on Federal Security Service Director Alexander Bortnikov, head of the Presidential Domestic Policy Directorate Andrei Yarin, First Deputy Chief of Staff of the Presidential Administration Sergei Kiriyenko, Presidential Representative in the Siberian Federal District Sergei Menyailo, and Deputy Defense Ministers Pavel Popov and Alexei Krivoruchko. Read more 
16.10.20 Peter Pomerantsev's Study Of 'the War Against Reality' Wins Gordon Burn Prize
The Guardian
Peter Pomerantsev has won the 2020 Gordon Burn prize with This Is Not Propaganda, a study of fake news that tells “true stories with artistry”. Speaking after he won the £5,000 award, Pomerantsev paid tribute to his parents, whose lives as Soviet dissidents are threaded through the book, and urged everyone to speak with their own parents. “As I interviewed them, as I sat with them for a long time,” Pomerantsev said, “they suddenly became people to me and at the age of 43 I realised that parents are actually people with their own life stories.” Read more 
16.10.20 Moscow To Launch Coronavirus Check-In System For Bars, Nightclubs
The Moscow Times
Moscow partygoers will be required to register their phone numbers before they can enter bars, nightclubs and other late-night establishments, Mayor Sergei Sobyanin announced Thursday as the city sees a renewed rise in coronavirus cases.
Starting Oct. 19, all visitors of establishments operating between midnight and 6 a.m. will be required to scan a QR code or send a text message to a designated number prior to entering the venue, said the announcement on Sobyanin’s website. Read more 
16.10.20 Thanks To COVID-19, Russia Now Has More Overdue Loans Than Ever Before
Meduza
Russian banks and microfinance organizations have never had more overdue loans than they do right now: 12.6 million. According to new figures released by the National Association of Professional Collection Agencies and analysts at Equifax, the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic has led to the credit boom. The number of loans in Russia at least 90 days overdue is 12.5 percent higher now than at this time last year, and more and more loans go unpaid every day, raising the total by 80,000–500,000 every month. Read more 
16.10.20 Single Fathers With Children Via Surrogates Flee Russia Amid Crackdown
The Guardian
Several gay men have fled Russia after officials said that they would arrest people “of non-traditional sexual orientation” who had had children through surrogacy. The announcement formed the authorities’ latest attack on the LGBT community. Surrogacy is legal in Russia but has increasingly been attacked by conservative lawmakers and the Orthodox church. Police arrested a number of top fertility doctors this year and have accused them of “child trafficking” in an ongoing case. State media recently quoted an unnamed official saying that investigators would widen their investigation into surrogacy to include single fathers, whom the official assumed would be gay. Read more 
15.10.20 Russian Minister Says No Need To Shut Down Shops, Restaurants
TASS
Cafes, restaurants and shops can continue working in Russia, abiding by the guidelines of the Russian consumer watchdog, if there is no sharp increases in rates of coronavirus infections, Russian Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov told TASS. "Yes, for now," he responded to the question whether these businesses can keep working. Read more 
15.10.20 Russia Registers 13,754 New Coronavirus Cases, 286 Deaths In Past 24 Hours
Interfax
Russia registered 13,754 new coronavirus cases and 286 deaths in the past 24 hours, the coronavirus response headquarters said in a statement on Thursday. "Over the past day, 13,754 Covid-19 cases were confirmed in 85 regions of Russia, including 3,427 active asymptomatic cases (24.9%)," the headquarters said. The daily increase in coronavirus cases reduced since Wednesday, when Russia reported 14,231 new coronavirus instances. The growth is still the steepest in Moscow, which reported 3,942 coronavirus cases on Thursday, as against over 4,000 the day before. Read more 
15.10.20 Top Russian Diplomat Skeptical About Nuclear Pact Extension
AP
Russia’s top diplomat voiced doubt Wednesday that Moscow and Washington could negotiate an extension of their last arms control pact still standing, even as the United States offered a more optimistic view. Speaking in an interview with several Russian news outlets, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that Russia can’t accept the conditions put forward by the United States for the extension of the New START treaty. Read more 
15.10.20 One American, Two Russians Blast Off To International Space Station
Reuters
A Russian Soyuz spacecraft carrying a U.S. astronaut and two Russian cosmonauts successfully reached the International Space Station after blasting off from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Wednesday, live footage broadcast by Russia’s space agency Roscosmos showed. The Soyuz MS-17 spacecraft carrying NASA astronaut Kate Rubins, a microbiologist who in 2016 became the first person to sequence DNA in space, and Russian cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov reached the space station roughly three hours after liftoff, bringing the orbital laboratory’s crew size to five. Read more 
15.10.20 Large Oil Slick Discovered On Russia's Volga River
The Moscow Times
An oil slick the size of a hockey rink has been discovered on the Volga River north of Moscow, authorities said Wednesday, the latest instance of pollution to hit Russia’s waterways this year. The 5,000 square meter layer of fuel was spotted near the port of Kimry some 150 kilometers north of the Russian capital, Moscow transport investigators said in a statement. “The discharge of petrochemical products from a vessel currently being identified has presumably occurred,” it said. Read more 
14.10.20 Russia Threatens To Halt Dialogue With EU Amid Navalny Spat
AP
Russia’s foreign minister warned Tuesday that Moscow could freeze its contacts with the European Union in response to its sanctions over the poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny — an unprecedented threat that reflects a bitter Russia-EU strain. The tough statement from Sergey Lavrov comes a day after the EU foreign ministers agreed to impose sanctions on Russian officials and organizations blamed for Navalny’s poisoning with a Soviet-era nerve agent. “We probably simply have to temporarily stop talking to those people in the West who are responsible for foreign policy and don’t understand the need for mutually respectful dialogue,” Lavrov said at a foreign policy conference attended by experts in Moscow. Read more 
14.10.20 ‘Man’s Role Is Insignificant’
Meduza
On October 12, the Vice President of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Andrey Andrianov, announced that the near complete decimation of marine life along the seabed of the Avacha Bay in Kamchatka was not due to chemical contamination, but rather the result of an abnormally active algal bloom, known as a “red tide.” In effect, there are large concentrations of microalgae reproducing in the bay and secreting substances that are toxic to invertebrates, he explained. The day before, on October 11, Far Eastern Federal University (FEFU) Vice-Rector Dmitry Zemtsov reported that the university’s researchers had reached the same conclusion after a research trip to the area, where they found no confirmation of a toxic leak from local landfills, or a fuel spill, or pollution due to seismic activity. To find out more, Meduza special correspondent Irina Kravtsova spoke to Russia’s leading researcher on red tides in the Far East — Tatyana Orlova, the author of dozens of scientific papers on this topic and the head of the Laboratory of Marine Microbiota at the National Scientific Center of Marine Biology in Vladivostok. Read more 
14.10.20 Entrepreneur Files Lawsuits Against Navalny And His Supporters
TASS
Lawyers of Russian businessman and CEO of Concord company Yevgeny Prigozhin began filing lawsuits on protection of honor and dignity against Alexey Navalny, Lyubov Sobol, Leonid Volkov, Maxim Shevchenko and Vladimir Milov, Concord press service announced Tuesday. "The Concord press service informs that Yevgeny Prigozhin’s lawyers prepared and have already begun filing lawsuits on protection of honor and dignity against the following citizens: Alexey Navalny, Lyubov Sobol, Leonid Volkov, Maxim Shevchenko and Vladimir Milov," the announcement reads. Read more 
14.10.20 China And Russia Win Seats On UN Rights Council, Saudis Lose
AP
China, Russia and Cuba won seats on the U.N.’s premiere human rights body Tuesday despite opposition from activist groups over their abysmal human rights records, but another target, Saudi Arabia, lost. Russia and Cuba were running unopposed, but China and Saudi Arabia were in a five-way race in the only contested race for seats on the Human Rights Council. In secret-ballot voting in the 193-member U.N. General Assembly on that race, Pakistan received 169 votes, Uzbekistan 164, Nepal 150, China 139 and Saudi Arabia just 90 votes. Read more 
14.10.20 School’s Out For Quarantine
Meduza
Usually, Russia’s schools take a week-long holiday in mid-autumn. This year, schools across the country were supposed to go on break as of October 26. But in three regions — Moscow, Sakhalin, and the Ulyanovsk Region — school children have already been sent on a two-week vacation due to outbreaks of the coronavirus. In Moscow and Ulyanovsk, schools have been closed since October 5. In Sakhalin, they’ve been closed since October 12. And whether or not these kids will be headed back to the classroom after the break remains unknown. Read more 
14.10.20 Russia Sets Single-Day Record For New Coronavirus Cases, Deaths
The Moscow Times
Russia has set a new record for coronavirus deaths and cases, nearing 14,000 infections for the third time in a week, according to the national coronavirus information center. Russia confirmed 13,868 new Covid-19 cases Tuesday, bringing its official number of cases to 1,326,178 and setting a new record for daily infections. The information center also confirmed 244 deaths caused by Covid-19, the highest count since the start of the pandemic. Russia’s previous highest number of fatalities stood at 232 people on May 29. Read more 
14.10.20 'To Hell With The Labor Code'
Meduza
The coronavirus is tearing through Muscovites again at a pace not seen since the start of the pandemic. In response, Mayor Sergey Sobyanin has ordered employers to shift more than a quarter of their workforces to remote work, leading to confusion among independent contractors and desperation in industries like foodservice, where remote work is simply impractical. Meduza correspondent Alexandra Sivtsova spoke to several entrepreneurs in Moscow to find out how they’re managing the city’s new demands. Read more 
13.10.20 COVID-19 Situation In Russia 'fairly Manageable,' Not Alarming
TASS
The situation with the spread of the coronavirus infection in Russia is quite manageable and the surge in the number of the infected is not alarming. Yet one shouldn’t forget about the precautionary measures, Deputy Director for Research of the Central Research Institute of Epidemiology of the Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing Alexander Gorelov told TASS. Read more 
13.10.20 Sputnik V Covid-19 Vaccine May Become Generally Available To Public In Late Oct-early Nov
Interfax
The coronavirus vaccine developed by Russia's Gamaleya Center could become generally available to the public at the end of October or at the beginning of November, Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) CEO Kirill Dmitriev said. "We believe that the vaccine may be put into broad circulation in late October-early November," Dmitriev told the Rossiya 24 television channel on Monday. More than 12,000 people have already been vaccinated as part of the post-registration trials, he said, adding that 600 of them have already been given the first and second injections and they are showing "a very good level of antibodies, and the clinical trials are going on successfully." Read more 
13.10.20 EU To Slap Sanctions On Russia Officials Over Navalny Attack
AP
European Union foreign ministers agreed Monday to impose sanctions on Russian officials and organizations blamed for the poisoning of opposition leader Alexei Navalny with a Soviet-era nerve agent. At a meeting in Luxembourg, France and Germany urged their EU partners to freeze the assets of those suspected of involvement and ban them from traveling in Europe under sanctions to combat the use and spread of chemical weapons. “It was a complete acceptance by all member states,” EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell told reporters after the talks. “Everybody was supporting this proposal.” Read more 
13.10.20 China, Russia And Saudi Arabia Set To Join UN Human Rights Council
The Guardian
China, Russia, Cuba, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia are expected to be elected to the board of the UN human rights council on Tuesday, leaving human rights campaigners in the countries aghast and pleading with EU states to commit to withholding their support. The Geneva-based monitoring NGO UN Watch described the situation as the equivalent of allowing five convicted arsonists to join the fire brigade. Read more 
13.10.20 Kamchatka Marine Life Death Caused By Algae
The Moscow Times
The mass death of sea creatures in Russia's Kamchatka region was caused by toxins from microalgae rather than man-made pollution, a senior Russian scientist said on Monday, citing preliminary findings of an investigation. Locals on the volcanic peninsula in the Pacific raised the alarm in September as surfers experienced stinging eyes and sea creatures, including octopuses, seals and sea urchins, were found dead on the shore. Scientists suggested that up to 95% of marine life living along the seabed in the affected area had died. Read more 
13.10.20 Suspected Gunman Who Killed Four In Nizhny Novgorod Bus Shooting Found Dead
TASS
Police and the National Guard officers found the body of a young man, who is suspected of killing three citizens of the Nizhny Novgorod Region, in western Russia, the Interior Ministry’s regional department told TASS on Tuesday. Earlier, a source in the law enforcement agencies said the man had committed suicide. "Police officers together with members of Rosgvardiya [the Russian National Guard] in the region found the body of an 18-year-old resident of Nizhny Novgorod, who is suspected of killing three people," the press service said. The body was discovered in a forest near the Bolsheorlovskoye settlement in the Borsky district. Read more 
13.10.20 Russian Historian Charged With Murdering, Dismembering Girlfriend Pleads Guilty
Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty
A Russian historian charged with murdering and dismembering his student lover has pleaded guilty at the resumption of his trial in the city of St. Petersburg. In answering questions in the courtroom on October 12 about whether he is pleading guilty to charges of murder and the illegal possession of a weapon, Oleg Sokolov replied "yes." Earlier in June, the defendant said he would "answer this question after the accusing side presents all of its evidence." During an investigation of the case, Sokolov admitted to killing and dismembering his lover, 24-year-old postgraduate student Anastasia Yeshchenko, a crime that has captivated Russia's second-largest city since November 2019. Read more 
13.10.20 Russia Recruits Rare Dogs To Sniff Out Coronavirus As Second Wave Tightens Grip
The Moscow Times
In a yard filled with abandoned plane parts next to Moscow’s main Sheremetyevo Airport, handlers are putting a pack of energetic sniffer dogs through their paces. The small, fox-like canines are Shalaikas, a cross between Arctic Nenets herding dogs known as Laikas and Southern Turkmen golden jackals. Russia hopes it will soon be able to use them to detect Covid-19 in humans. “This is in many ways the perfect scent dog,” Yelena Batayeva, head of Aeroflot’s dog training service, told The Moscow Times, holding a pup called Kapriz. Read more 
12.10.20 Russia Reports Over 13,600 New Coronavirus Cases, Highest Rate Since Start Of Pandemic
TASS
Russia recorded 13,634 coronavirus cases in the past day, the highest rate since the start of pandemic, the anti-coronavirus crisis center reported on Sunday. The coronavirus growth rate rose to 1.1% from 1% over the past two days. Russia’s total case tally reached 1,298,718. The lowest growth rates in the past 24 hours were registered in the Chechen Republic (0.3%), the Chuvash Republic (0.4%), in the Moscow and Tula Regions, the Republics of Tuva, Tatarstan, Bashkiria and the Chukotka Autonomous Region (0.5%). Read more 
12.10.20 Russia Breaks Single-Day Record For Coronavirus Cases For 3rd Straight Day
The Moscow Times
Russia confirmed 13,634 new coronavirus cases Sunday, setting a record for new infections as authorities at the epicenter of the outbreak consider new restrictions to slow the spread of the disease. Russia, which has the world’s fourth-highest number of infections at 1,298,718 cases, has seen its daily caseload double over the past month. According to the tally compiled by the national coronavirus information center, a total of 22,579 Russians have died, with 149 fatalities confirmed Sunday. Monthly data published by Russia’s statistics agency suggests that the real number of fatalities is at least double that figure.
Read more 
12.10.20 EU Renews Sanctions For Chemical Weapons Use For One Year
TASS
he European Council has prolonged the sanctions regime for the use of chemical weapons for one year, until October 16, 2021, the statement published by the Council on Monday informs. Some members of the EU propose to expand the sanctions list in relation to the incident with Russian opposition figure Alexey Navalny. "The Council today decided to extend the regime allowing the EU to impose restrictive measures on persons and entities involved in the development and use of chemical weapons by one year, until 16 October 2021," the statement reads. Read more 
11.10.20 Police Detain Protesters In Russian City Of Khabarovsk
AP
Police in a far eastern Russian city detained several dozen protesters on Saturday, the first such crackdown since rallies against the arrest of the provincial governor started three months ago. Khabarovsk Gov. Sergei Furgal was arrested on July 9 on suspicion of involvement in murders and taken to jail in Moscow. Furgal, a former businessman, denied the charges, which his supporters say are a vendetta by his rivals. Since his arrest thousands of demonstrators have regularly rallied in Khabarovsk, a city of 600,000 near the border with China, with attendance peaking on weekends. They protested Furgal’s jailing and demanded that his trial is held in the city. Read more 
11.10.20 Pushkin House Shortlisted Books Tackle Authoritarianism
The Moscow Times
Each year, the panel of judges of Pushkin House’s annual Book Prize considers 80-100 non-fiction books about Russia published in the previous year. Their daunting task is to choose from this list just six finalists for the Pushkin House’s coveted Book Prize, which will be awarded for the eighth year this autumn. This year’s shortlisted authors are a diverse group of Russian, American, and British authors, academics, and journalists, and each has created a book which Serhii Plokhy, this year’s Chair of the Judges and author of last year’s winning “Chernobyl” notes “are books that represent a wealth of knowledge about the region — books published in the last year but years and years of work went into them.” Read more 
11.10.20 Police Crack Down On Marathon Anti-Kremlin Protest In Russia's Far East
Reuters
Police in Russia’s Far East broke up a long-running anti-Kremlin protest with force on Saturday, detaining 25 people according to local authorities, in response to what they called an illegal attempt to erect protest tents in a central square. The demonstrations, in the city of Khabarovsk, have been going on for the last three months against President Vladimir Putin’s handling of a regional political crisis. Video footage on social media showed baton-wielding police wearing body armour hauling protesters away and dismantling tents as a woman screamed “What country do you live in?” Read more 
11.10.20 Provocative Sensibility Of Artem Shumov’s Menswear
Forbes
I first wrote about him in 2017. Back then, he was just one of a few new names challenging Moscow’s stylistic addiction to gold, fur, and more gold. Now designer Artem Shumov is media-certified as “the hope of menswear in Russia.” It seemed worth to take a closer look at someone pushing the envelope on expressions of masculinity in a notoriously patriarchal country. To paraphrase a contested cultural insight, behind every successful man (in fashion) there is a group of influential women: muses, clients, mentors. Shumov’s provocative sensibility, professional determination and overall optimism are rooted in his formative experiences in the industry. Read more 
11.10.20 Emergency Declared In Russia’s Krasnoyarsk Territory Over Fuel Leak
Sputnik
Emergency has been declared in the Kezhemsky District in the eastern part of Russia's Krasnoyarsk Territory after some 500 liters (over 132 gallons) of fuel leaked from a barge to the Angara River, the regional department of the Russian Emergencies Ministry said in a statement on Saturday. “Starting from 9 October, the emergency regime has been declared in the Kezhemsky District over the leak of oil products to the Angara River,” the statement said. The authorities of the Kezhemsky District said that the incident involved the leak of 500 liters of diesel fuel to the river. Read more 
11.10.20 'A Responsible Job'
Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty
For five years, Marina Udgodskaya cleaned the administration building of this village in central Russia, and stoked the fire in winter to keep officials warm. Now she runs the place. Although she only entered a recent local election to help the Kremlin-backed incumbent stay in power, she ended up routing her opponent and taking over the office she used to scrub and mop. From a desk flanked by a portrait of President Vladimir Putin and a map of her political domain, Udgodskaya now presides over a fiefdom comprising 29 villages in this poor but picturesque region, 500 kilometers from the country's capital. Read more 
10.10.20 Russia Sponsors Nagorno-Karabakh Cease-fire Talks
AP
Russia moved to stop the worst escalation of fighting in the separatist region of Nagorno-Karabakh in more than a quarter-century by hosting cease-fire talks on Friday. Late Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin issued a statement calling for a break in the fighting between the Armenian and Azerbaijani forces that have raged for nearly two weeks over the region. The Kremlin said Putin’s initiative followed a series of calls with Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev. The latest outburst of fighting between Azerbaijani and Armenian forces began Sept. 27 and marked the biggest escalation of the decades-old conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh. The region lies in Azerbaijan but has been under control of ethnic Armenian forces backed by Armenia since the end of a separatist war in 1994. Read more 
10.10.20 'We Don’t Know How To Treat This'
Meduza
In early September, more than one million Russians were battling the coronavirus. Statistics show that many regions are now in the midst of experiencing a second wave. However, no one seems to know how to treat the virus effectively as of yet. “Meduza” special correspondent Svetlana Reiter and science editor Alexander Ershov investigate the different drugs being used to treat the coronavirus in Russia and find out who’s profiting during the pandemic. Read more 
10.10.20 US, Russia Said Close To Deal On Nuclear Warhead Freeze
AP
U.S. and Russian negotiators have agreed in principle to continue freezing their nuclear warhead stockpiles in a bid to salvage their last remaining arms control pact before it expires next year, a person familiar with the talks said Friday. The person said it’s not yet clear if the agreement for a freeze will succeed or translate into an extension of the New START treaty that expires in February. But, if it works, the person said an agreement could be announced before the Nov. 3 presidential election with an eye toward extending the accord and eventually bringing China into it, a longtime Trump administration demand. Read more 
10.10.20 Russia’s Billionaires Grow Richer, But Fall Behind International Peers
The Moscow Times
Russia’s billionaires have increased their net worth by 20% during the coronavirus pandemic, as a boom in global stock markets and asset prices has pushed the fortunes of the world’s ultra-wealthy to dizzying new levels. Despite the rapid growth — which comes against a backdrop of unprecedented economic uncertainty, with millions of Russians losing their jobs or seeing their wages shrink due to the pandemic — Russia’s billionaires lag the rest of the world in terms of how fast they are expanding their fortunes. The wealth controlled by Russia’s richest has risen by 80% over the last decade, consultants PwC and Swiss bank UBS found in a new report — the smallest increase among the world’s top 10 billionaire locations, which includes rapidly accelerating markets like China and India, as well as developed economies such as the U.S., UK, Canada and Germany. Read more 
10.10.20 Moscow Hospital Feels Strain Of Second COVID-19 Wave
Reuters
Alexei Karzin, head of a 20-bed intensive care unit in a Moscow hospital, felt a sense of relief when his unit stopped treating COVID-19 patients in early September and could get back to looking after stroke victims. His relief was short-lived. Three weeks later, he turned his ward back into a “red zone” after the hospital struggled to cope with a sudden influx of coronavirus patients. “I knew, of course, there would be some increase in infected people,” said Karzin, sitting at his desk at Moscow Hospital Number 52. “But we didn’t expect it to be this sharp and to involve such high numbers.” Read more 
09.10.20 Putin Invites Armenian, Azerbaijani Ministers To Moscow For Talks
TASS
Russian President Vladimir Putin invited the foreign ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan to visit Moscow on October 9 for talks on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the Kremlin press service said on Thursday. "After a series of phone conversations with Azerbaijani President Ilkham Aliyev and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, the president of the Russian Federation is making a call to cease the current hostilities in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone for humanitarian reasons, with the aim to carry out a swap of dead bodies and prisoners," the press service said in a statement. Read more 
09.10.20 Pollution Plume In Kamchatka 100 Meters Wide
Interfax
Scientists from the Far Eastern Federal University have performed aerial survey of the pollution plume, which stretches out from the northern tip of the Khalaktyrsky Beach to the Listvennichnaya Bay in Kamchatka; the 100-meter-wide plume is slowly migrating southward towards the Kuril Islands, the university press service said. "It was assumed initially that the pollution plume is limited to the Khalaktyrsky Beach, but the aerial survey shows that it is not shrinking and is being carried southward by currents. Unless the intensity and speed of the substance's migration change, its southward expansion may continue towards the Kuril Islands," the press service quoted head of the Far Eastern Federal University's laboratory for ecology and evolutionary biology of water organisms Kirill Vinnikov as saying. Read more 
09.10.20 6 Russian Weightlifters Banned Over Doping Lab Data
AP
Six Russian weightlifters including Olympic bronze medalist Ruslan Albegov have received bans based on analysis of data from the Moscow anti-doping laboratory which was at the center of a years-long cover-up scheme. The International Weightlifting Federation said the six athletes were found guilty by a disciplinary panel based on databases retrieved from the Moscow lab, without providing details of the individual cases. The World Anti-Doping Agency has sorted through the vast data archive to identify cases where doping was covered up in Russia in previous years. Read more 
09.10.20 Russia Says Poland's Nord Stream 2 Fine Is A Move To Please U.S
Reuters
A Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said on Thursday that a decision by Poland to impose a hefty fine on Gazprom GAZP.MM for its part in the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project was taken to please Washington, Interfax news agency reported. Poland on Wednesday fined the Russian gas giant more than 29 billion zlotys ($7.6 billion) for building the pipeline without Warsaw’s approval. Russia’s energy projects have become increasingly politicised since Moscow’s annexation of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014. Russia accounts for around a third of natural gas supply to Europe. Read more 
09.10.20 Russia Finds Contaminants In Rivers Near Site Of Far East Sea Pollution
Reuters
Russia’s environment watchdog, which is investigating unexplained toxic pollution off the country’s far eastern coast, said on Thursday it had found significantly higher levels of pollutants in nearby rivers than in the affected waters themselves. Greenpeace warned last week of an ecological disaster in waters off the Russian region of Kamchatka, a volcanic peninsula on the Pacific, where large numbers of sea creatures died, their carcasses washing up ashore. Russia opened a criminal investigation on Wednesday to establish the cause of the pollution. Conservation group WWF has said it was very likely caused by a highly toxic soluble substance. Read more 
09.10.20 Moscow Can Avoid Tough Measures If Anti-coronavirus Restrictions Observed
TASS
Tough measures to contain the novel coronavirus infection in Moscow will not be necessary if residents observe the current requirements of Russia’s sanitary watchdog, the head of the city’s chief control directorate, Yevgeny Danchikov, told the Rossiya-24 TV channel. "If we observe all the requirements, tougher measures won’t be necessary," he said. In his words, not all residents take the rule of wearing face masks and gloves in public places seriously. "The current situation and how quickly we overcome it fully depends on our behavior," he said. Read more 
09.10.20 When Natural Gas Prices Rise, Russia’s Nord Stream 2 Will Get A Second Wind
Forbes
The prevailing wisdom is that Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline is a dead deal because of the poisoning of President Putin’s nemesis. That’s true, at least for now. But like a cat, this pipeline that heads from Russia into Germany has nine lives — with the next one coming after the coronavirus ends and natural gas prices rise. Russia has a lot of time and money into this pipeline. It is 90% finished. So it does not want to leave a natural gas pipeline stranded with nothing to show for it. But Russia misplayed its hand by allegedly trying to poison opposition leader Alex Navalny in mid-September, which enraged civilized society. And now German Chancellor Angela Merkel is getting pressured to end her support. Read more 
09.10.20 Armenia, Azerbaijan Confirm They Will Attend Moscow Talks: Russia
The Moscow Times
Russia said Friday that Armenia and Azerbaijan had agreed to meet in Moscow for negotiations on ending the fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh, after President Vladimir Putin called for talks. "Baku and Yerevan have confirmed their participation in the consultations in Moscow," Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told AFP. "Active preparations are underway," she said, with the talks expected to take place later on Friday and involve the two countries' foreign ministers. Putin's invitation came as there appeared to be no end in sight for nearly two weeks of fighting between Azerbaijan and ethic Armenian separatists that has claimed hundreds of lives. Read more 
09.10.20 'At Capacity'
Meduza
In Russia, against the backdrop of a sharp increase in new coronavirus cases, the number of available hospital beds for COVID-19 patients has decreased significantly, and patients undergoing diagnostics are waiting for hours to get CT scans. In a new report, the Russian business newspaper “Kommersant” breaks down how the second coronavirus wave is impacting the country’s hospitals, based on conversations with patients and their relatives, as well as official statements from the regional authorities. Read more 
09.10.20 Russia Convicts 6 Jehovah’s Witnesses On ‘Extremism’ Charges
The Moscow Times
A court in central Russia has handed suspended sentences to six Jehovah’s Witnesses on Thursday, its latest crackdown on the religious organization that it banned three years ago. A district court in the city of Ulyanovsk 800 kilometers southeast of Moscow found four men and a married couple guilty of organizing or participating in “extremist activity,” the Jehovah’s Witnesses organization told The Moscow Times. The court gave them suspended sentences ranging from two to four years. The court database has classified the details of the case.
Read more 
09.10.20 Pussy Riot Activists Arrested In Moscow For Hanging Rainbow Flags
Meduza
The arrests appear to be in connection with a protest action Pussy Riot activists carried out on Wednesday, October 7. Calling for support for LGBTQ rights, the activists hung rainbow flags on various government buildings around Moscow, including the Federal Security Service (FSB) headquarters, the Presidential Executive Office, the Supreme Court, the Culture Ministry, and the Basmanny District police headquarters. During the action, the activists presented a list of demands, which included the legalization of same-sex partnerships, as well as an investigation into the abductions and killings of LGBTQ people in Russia’s Chechnya. The protest was timed to coincide with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s 68th birthday. Read more 
08.10.20 Russia Issues Arrest Warrant Against Belarus’s Ex-presidential Candidate Tikhanovskaya
TASS
An arrest warrant has been issued against former Belarusian presidential candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya on Russian territory, according to Russian Interior Ministry database. "Warrant ground: criminal code clause," the database says. Meanwhile, a source in Russian law enforcement told TASS that the arrest warrant had been initially issued in Belarus, but it also extends to Russia, due to bilateral agreement between the two nations. Such interstate arrest warrant is not considered an international one, the source explained. Read more 
08.10.20 Russia Introduces E-visa For 52 Countries
Interfax
Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin has approved a list of countries eligible for an electronic visa, the government's press service said. "Russia introduces a national electronic visa from the beginning of 2021. The list of countries whose citizens will be allowed to apply has been approved by Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin. The list comprises 52 countries," the statement reads. These include all countries which participated in an e-visa pilot project. "The list excludes Qatar because our countries have had visa-free travel since February 23, 2020," the press service said. Read more 
08.10.20 Russia Explosion And Fire At Munitions Depot Sends 2,000 Fleeing
The Guardian
Russia has evacuated more than 2,000 people from nearby villages after a wildfire set off explosions at a munitions depot in the Ryazan region south-east of Moscow, officials said. More than 400 firefighters were battling into the evening on Wednesday to extinguish a blaze that broke out at the depot that day, with the authorities saying five people were injured but there were no deaths. The fire was sparked by a wildfire in dry grass nearby, the emergencies ministry said, causing munitions to explode. Read more 
08.10.20 Poland Fines Russia's Gazprom $7.6 Billion Over Pipeline
The Independent
Polish antitrust authorities have fined Russia s state-owned energy giant Gazprom $7.6 billion (6.5 billion euros) for its role in building the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to Germany, saying the project hurts Polish consumers and increases Europe’s dependence on Russian imports. The Office of Competition and Consumer Protection on Wednesday also fined five other international companies participating in the project a total of $61 million (52 million euros). Read more 
08.10.20 Ex-German Chancellor Schroder Sues Magazine Over Navalny’s Russia Poisoning Story
Forbes
The former Chancellor of Germany, Gerhard Schroeder, will sue Bild magazine of his come country after a story about Russian activist Alexei Navalny attributed quotes to him that he says were false. First off, Navalny is considered the anti-Putin voice in Russia and is heralded as the Russian opposition leader. He was apparently poisoned, which was blamed on the Russian government and later denied. He has since recovered after being comatosed for two weeks. His ordeal has led to more sanctions against Russia. Read more 
08.10.20 Russian On Trial Accused Of State-ordered Berlin Execution
AP
A Russian accused of killing a Georgian man in broad daylight in downtown Berlin on Moscow’s orders went on trial for murder Wednesday, in a case that has contributed to growing frictions between Germany and Russia. The defendant Vadim Krasikov, using the alias Vadim Solokov, traveled to the German capital last August on the orders of the Russian government to kill a Georgian citizen of Chechen ethnicity who fought Russian troops in Chechnya, prosecutor Ronald Georg said. “State agencies of the central government of the Russian Federation gave the defendant the contract to liquidate the Georgian citizen with Chechen roots,” Georg told the court, reading the indictment. Read more 
08.10.20 Russia Successfully Test-Launches ‘Tsirkon’ Hypersonic Missile
The Moscow Times
Russia has successfully test-fired its highly touted hypersonic cruise missile called Tsirkon in the waters of northwestern Russia, the military said Wednesday. Chief of General Staff of the Armed Forces Valery Gerasimov reported to President Vladimir Putin on his 68th birthday that the Tsirkon's launch from a guided missile frigate “directly hit” its intended target. “Yesterday at 7:15 a.m., the Tsirkon hypersonic cruise missile for the first time hit a sea target as part of flight tests,” the state-run TASS news agency quoted Gerasimov as saying. “The launch tasks were completed, the shooting was declared successful.”
Read more 
08.10.20 St. Petersburg Man Sets Himself On Fire Holding ‘Happy Birthday, Mr. President’ Sign
The Moscow Times
An elderly man wearing a “Happy Birthday Mr. President” sign set himself on fire on a crowded street in central St. Petersburg on President Vladimir Putin’s 68th birthday Wednesday, media reported. The unnamed 71-year-old businessman was hospitalized in serious condition after his self-immolation witnessed by dozens of passersby outside a shopping mall. The Sobaka.ru outlet said the victim suffered first- and second-degree burns to 45% of his body surface. Eyewitnesses described hearing him scream out “something about President Putin’s birthday and a gift” before committing the act, the Megapolis news website reported. Read more 
07.10.20 ‘We Owe Nothing To Anyone’
The Moscow Times
Russia rejects the global chemical weapons watchdog’s findings of a Novichok-type nerve agent in Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny’s samples, Moscow’s envoy in the Hague-based organization said Tuesday. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) said earlier Tuesday that Navalny’s blood and urine samples taken by its experts in Germany contained traces of a type of nerve agent with “similar characteristics” as Novichok. Its findings confirm similar results by laboratories in Germany, where Navalny was treated, as well as France and Sweden. Read more 
07.10.20 Navalny Demands EU Crackdown On Oligarchs Close To Kremlin
Reuters
Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny called on the European Union on Wednesday to take tough action against oligarchs close to the Kremlin as he continues his recovery in Germany after being poisoned by a nerve agent of the banned Novichok family. Germany said on Tuesday it was discussing with its partners what action to take after the global chemicals watchdog confirmed Navalny was poisoned with a new and undeclared variant in the Novichok group of toxins. Several Western governments have said Russia, which has denied accusations by Navalny that it was involved in the poisoning, must help in investigations or face consequences. Read more 
07.10.20 95% Of Marine Life On Sea Floor Killed In Kamchatka Eco-Disaster
The Moscow Times
Nearly all seafloor-dwelling life in pollution-hit waters off Russia’s Pacific coast in the Kamchatka region has been wiped out in an unexplained mass death of marine animals, scientists told the region’s governor Tuesday. Images showing hundreds of dead octopuses, large fish, sea urchins and crabs washed up on the shore of Khalaktyrsky beach went viral over the weekend as environmentalists sounded the alarm over an ecological disaster. Kamchatka governor Vladimir Solodov said that authorities were considering manmade pollution, natural phenomena or a volcano-related earthquake as possible causes of the mass deaths. Read more 
07.10.20 Russia Warns That Nagorno-Karabakh Could Become Islamist Militant Stronghold
Reuters
The Kremlin issued a new appeal for an end to hostilities in and around Nagorno-Karabakh on Tuesday after Moscow’s foreign intelligence chief said the mountain enclave could become a launch pad for Islamist militants to enter Russia. Moscow expressed alarm after the deadliest fighting in more than 25 years between ethnic Armenian and Azeri forces entered a 10th day, though the French news agency AFP later said Armenia had offered concessions only if Azerbaijan was ready to do so. Read more 
07.10.20 Locals Hold Memorial March For Journalist Irina Slavina In Nizhny Novgorod
Meduza
During the afternoon of October 6, approximately 200 people marched through the streets of Nizhny Novgorod following the memorial service for local journalist Irina Slavina, who self-immolated outside of the city’s police headquarters late last week. She died of her injuries on the scene. Slavina was the editor-in-chief of the publication “Koza.Press” and faced constant pressure from the authorities due to her reporting. Moments before she self-immolated on October 2, she wrote on Facebook: “For my death, please blame the Russian Federation.” Read more 
06.10.20 Putin, Pashinyan Discuss Escalation Of Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict
TASS
Escalation of the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh was in focus of a telephone conversation between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, the Kremlin press service said on Monday. "The sides continued to discuss the escalation of the armed confrontation in the zone of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict which is entailing serious losses on both sides, including among the civilian population," the Kremlin said. Putin once again called for immediate cessation of hostilities, it said, adding that the conversation was initiated by the Armenian prime minister. Read more 
06.10.20 Russian Rocket Fuel Leak Likely Cause Of Marine Animal Deaths
The Guardian
Water pollution in Russia’s Kamchatka peninsula that caused sea creatures to wash up dead on beaches has prompted fears that rocket fuel stored in the region’s military testing grounds may have leaked. The pollution came to light late last month after surfers reported stinging eyes and said the water had changed colour and developed an odour. Officials later confirmed the surfers had sustained mild burns to their corneas. Then locals reported seeing large numbers of dead marine species including seals, octopuses and sea urchins washed up on a black-sand beach popular with tourists. Read more 
06.10.20 Pollution Off Russia's Far East Looks Highly Toxic, Says WWF
Reuters
Conservation group WWF said on Monday that unexplained toxic pollution off Russia’s far eastern coast was likely caused by a highly soluble substance as officials played down the scale of the problem and suggested it was not manmade. Greenpeace raised the alarm last week over what it said looked like an ecological disaster off the coast of Kamchatka region, reposting images of dead sea life washed up on the coast. Surfers said they fell ill after getting into the water. On Monday, Greenpeace said activists had found yellowish foam on the ocean’s surface in several places and dead sea animals in one location, and that the water was murky. Read more 
05.10.20 Kamchatka Authorities Considering 3 Pollution Causes Off Coast Of The Peninsula
TASS
The Kamchatka Region administration are considering three reasons for water pollution off the coast of the peninsula, said the governor of the region Vladimir Solodov on Monday at a briefing. "A version of man-made pollution associated with human activities is being processed. With the spills of some toxic substances. What exactly now we have to find out if this version is confirmed. A version is being worked out that this [pollution] may be associated with natural influences, natural phenomena . With the behavior, so to speak, of algae, which during the storm carried to the coastline. A version of seismic activity associated with volcanic manifestations is also being worked out," Solodov said. Read more 
05.10.20 US, Russia To Hold Latest Nuclear Arms Talks In Finland
AP
The United States and Russia will hold a round of nuclear arms control talks in the Finland’s capital, Helsinki, on Monday to follow up on negotiations in Austria this summer, the Finnish president’s office said. “The round of discussions on strategic stability and nuclear weapons between the United States and Russia, which began in Vienna in the summer, will continue in Helsinki on Monday,” the office of the Finnish President Sauli Niinisto said in a brief statement late Sunday. The office said nuclear arms negotiators from Washington and Moscow met a previous time in Finland in 2017. Read more 
05.10.20 He Cheated Death, But Can Navalny Ever Break Putin’s Grip On Russia?
The Guardian
It has been an eventful few weeks for Ksenia Fadeyeva, who runs Alexei Navalny’s operations in the Siberian city of Tomsk. In mid-August, she welcomed the Russian opposition leader to this university town in the heart of the country’s vast landmass, to make a pre-election video about local corruption, as part of Fadeyeva’s bid to win election to the city council. It was on the plane back to Moscow from Tomsk that Navalny suddenly fell ill, and ended up in a coma, fighting for his life. German doctors say he was poisoned with a novichok nerve agent, apparently in his Tomsk hotel room. Fadeyeva had said goodbye to Navalny late the previous evening, and was scrolling through her phone that morning when she saw the news on Twitter. “It was something unbelievable. I don’t think anyone expected it,” she recalled in an interview last week at her office at Navalny’s Tomsk HQ, a modest room in a red-brick office block, with the walls painted sky-blue and adorned with a large map of Tomsk divided into electoral districts. Read more 
05.10.20 Activists Fear ‘Ecological Catastrophe’ In Russia’s Far East Kamchatka
The Moscow Times
Fears are mounting over an environmental disaster in Russia’s Far East after locals reported finding dozens of dead sea animals washed onto a beach from the Pacific Ocean. Greenpeace said tests conducted on water samples taken from around Khalaktyrsky beach in Russia’s Kamchatka region showed petroleum levels four times higher than usual, and phenol levels were also 2.5 times higher. “The scale of the contamination has not yet been determined, but the fact that dead animals are found all along the coast confirms the seriousness of the situation,” the organization said in a statement which described the incident as an “ecological catastrophe.” Read more 
04.10.20 Water Near Kamchatka Beach Poisoned By Commercial Tanker Leak
TASS
Poisoning of water in the area of Khalaktyrsky beach in Russia’s Kamchatka region, according to preliminary data, was caused by oil products leak from a commercial tanker, which was eliminated. The ownership of the vessel has not yet been established, a source in the emergency services of the Far East region told TASS on Saturday. "According to preliminary data, a commercial tanker followed the sea route along the beach with a leak, which was eliminated but led to a spill of oil products containing phenol. The vessel's ownership has not yet been established, a search is underway," the source said. Read more 
04.10.20 'Blame The Russian Federation For My Death,' Journalist Writes Before Self-Immolation
The Moscow Times
A Russian journalist has died after setting herself on fire outside police headquarters in the city of Nizhny Novgorod, Russian media reported Friday. Irina Slavina, the editor-in-chief of the KozaPress news outlet died at the scene, the Baza and 112 Telegram channels reported. “I ask you to blame the Russian Federation for my death,” Slavina, 47, wrote on her Facebook page about an hour before her death. The previous day, she said local security forces raided her home in search of evidence of her involvement with the opposition. Read more 
04.10.20 ‘The Morgue Is Full’
Meduza
In Russia, the second wave of the coronavirus epidemic has already begun. Every day, the country is registering approximately 500 more cases than the day before. The majority of Russia’s regions are experiencing similar increases, including in Moscow — on October 2, the capital recorded 2,704 new cases of COVID-19. Many doctors have returned to working in “red zones” in hospitals — including those who went back to providing routine medical care after the end of the first wave. In their own words, healthcare workers treating coronavirus patients tell “Meduza” what’s happening inside Russia’s hospitals amid the pandemic’s second wave. Read more 
03.10.20 Kremlin Says Coronavirus Lockdown In Russia Not Being Considered
TASS
Introduction of a new lockdown due to the spread of the coronavirus in Russia is not being considered currently, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists on Friday."As far as I know, this is not being considered now, as far as I know, it is not discussed," the Kremlin representative said. He noted that the anti-coronavirus crisis center continues to function. He also added that "in regions they are also working on it, undertake appropriate measures." As an example, the spokesman cited the actions of Moscow authorities. "As for the lockdown, currently it is not discussed," he reiterated. Read more 
03.10.20 Putin Wishes Trump Speedy Recovery, Expresses Support
Interfax
Russian President Vladimir Putin has sent a telegram to his U.S. counterpart Donald Trump and wished him a speedy recovery from coronavirus, the Kremlin press service said on Friday. Putin wished Trump and the first lady "a speedy recovery and voiced his sincere support at this difficult moment," the press service said. "I am confident that your vital energy, high spirits, and optimism will help you cope with the dangerous virus," the press service quoted Putin as saying. Read more 
03.10.20 Russian Journalist Sets Self On Fire, Dies Near Police HQ
AP
The editor of a Russian news website died after setting herself on fire outside a regional police headquarters Friday, a day after officers searched her residence. Russia’s Investigative Committee confirmed the death of Kolza.Press editor Irina Slavina in Nizhny Novgorod, a city of 1.2 million about 380 kilometers (235 miles) east of Moscow. Slavina reported on Thursday that her home was searched by police, although the nature of the search was not clear. Read more 
03.10.20 Gay Men In Russia With Surrogate Children Warned They Face Arrest
The Independent
Russian authorities have warned of the arrest of gay men who have fathered children to surrogate mothers, firing what appears to be another salvo across the bow of LGBT+ rights. Commenting on a long-running criminal case to state media, a source in the country’s Investigative Committee equated LGBT+ surrogacy to baby trafficking. It was an offence for men with “non-traditional orientation” to provide sperm for in vitro fertilisation, the source asserted. “We plan to arrest a number of suspects, single men, and Russian citizens, who have used surrogate mothers to give birth to children,” he added. Read more 
03.10.20 Yandex Vs. Sberbank: Battle Of The Russian Tech And Finance Giants Begins
The Moscow Times
Yandex and Sberbank’s fight to gain control of Russia’s finance and technology industries is being billed as the corporate showdown of the decade. “Sberbank versus Yandex: The battle of the super platforms has begun,” declared Russian business daily Vedomosti last week. Novaya Gazeta went further, dubbing it a “war of the ecosystems.” The clash — which has been brewing in the background for years — took center stage last week when Yandex announced it had struck a deal to buy upstart online challenger bank Tinkoff. Less than 48 hours later Sberbank unveiled what it called the “biggest transformation in its history,” unveiling a suite of technology products, and dropping the word “bank” from its corporate branding. Read more 
03.10.20 ‘Blame The Russian Federation’
Meduza
“Koza.Press” editor-in-chief Irina Slavina self-immolated outside of the police headquarters in Nizhny Novgorod on October 2, 2020. She died of her injuries at the scene. The day before, law enforcement searched her home in connection with a criminal investigation into the activities of an “undesirable organization.” The case was launched against another local resident — Slavina was considered a witness. In conversation with “Meduza,” Slavina’s friends and colleagues describe her as a fearless person, whose reporting on sensitive topics led to a life spent working under constant pressure from the authorities. Read more 
03.10.20 Pandemic, Petroleum, And Putin: Russia's Ruble Buckles Under Pressure
Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty
The Russian ruble ended September at about a five-year low against the euro, falling as far as 93.3 rubles to the euro on September 29. The same day, the ruble traded at 79.8 against the U.S. dollar, the weakest exchange since the oil-price crash in March. "The fact that the ruble has fallen by 20 percent or even more so far this year is about two-thirds due to the political situation," said Russian economist Yevgeny Gontmakher. "Even the fall in oil prices that happened in February was prompted by our policies." There are many factors influencing the ruble's downward trend, including the impact of the global coronavirus pandemic, worldwide nervousness surrounding the upcoming U.S. presidential election, and a sharp decrease in Moscow's revenues from the export of oil and gas. Read more 
02.10.20 Putin, Macron, Trump Call For Talks On Nagorno-Karabakh Without Preconditions
TASS
Presidents Vladimir Putin of Russia, Donald Trump of the United States and Emmanuel Macron of France in a joint statement have called on Armenia and Azerbaijan to resume talks on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict without preconditions. "We also call on the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan to commit without delay to resuming substantive negotiations, in good faith and without preconditions, under the auspices of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs," the statement reads. The presidents urged an immediate cessation of hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh. "We call for an immediate cessation of hostilities between the relevant military forces." Read more 
02.10.20 EU Sanctions Four More Russian Entities, Two Individuals Over Crimea Bridge Construction
Interfax
The EU Council has added four entities and two individuals to the list of persons, entities and bodies subject to restrictive measures for their role in designing, building or using the railway infrastructure linking Russia and Crimea, according to the EU Journal published on Thursday. The sanctions list now includes Alexander Ganov, general director of the JSC TC Grand Service Express; and Leonid Ryzhenkin, deputy general director for infrastructure projects at Stroigazmontazh (SGM). Also on the list are joint-stock company Lenpromtransproyekt, the Berkakit-Tommot-Yakutsk Railway Line's Construction Directorate, Federal State Unitary Enterprise Crimea Railway and First Crimean Insurance Company. Read more 
02.10.20 Russia’s Navalny Accuses Putin Of Being Behind His Poisoning
AP
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who is recovering in Germany after being poisoned in Russia, said in comments published Thursday that only Russian President Vladimir Putin could have been behind the attack against him with a Soviet-era nerve agent. Navalny’s supporters have frequently maintained that the poisoning could have only been ordered at the top level, although the Kremlin has repeatedly dismissed the allegation. German officials have said labs found traces of a chemical agent from the Novichok family in the Russian politician’s system. Read more 
02.10.20 Moscow To Reinstate Tough Measures If COVID-19 Rules Ignored
Reuters
Moscow may reinstate tough measures if its 13 million population ignores COVID-19 protection rules, its mayor Sergei Sobyanin said on Thursday after the Russian capital started to record increases in daily cases of infection. Moscow, the epicentre of Russia’s coronavirus outbreak earlier this year, registered 2,424 new cases overnight, up from below 700 in new daily cases in early September. In an attempt to curb the recent spike in infections, Sobyanin has earlier ordered to extend an upcoming school holiday by a week and advised anyone with chronic health problems or those older than 65 to stay home. Read more 
02.10.20 Fans Allowed To Attend Russian National Football Team’s Matches In October
TASS
Spectators will be allowed to attend the three matches to be played by the Russian national football team in October, a source familiar with the situation told TASS. The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) said on Thursday that stadiums hosting games of national teams and European cups can be filled with spectators to 30% of their capacity. However, the organization said that local authorities will have the final say on the matter. Read more 
02.10.20 Parents Of Antigay Ultranationalist Who Died In Russian Jail Allege Foul Play
Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty
The parents of a prominent antigay ultranationalist whose death in custody last month was ruled a suicide have alleged that their son was killed or driven to suicide and vowed to file a police complaint in the case. Thirty-six-year-old Maksim Martsinkevich -- a leader of the neo-Nazi group Format 18 who was known as Tesak (Machete) -- was found dead in a solitary-confinement cell in the west-central Russian city of Chelyabinsk on September 16 and his body transported to Moscow. His parents were quoted by Kommersant Daily on October 2 as saying the morgue in Moscow refused to allow independent forensics experts to see the body before burial but that it might show traces of violence.
Read more 
02.10.20 ‘A Flagrant Rights Violation’
Meduza
Member of Parliament Oksana Pushkina, the deputy head of the State Duma’s Committee on Family, Women, and Children’s Issues, has asked Russia’s Attorney General to confirm reports about the Investigative Committee allegedly planning to arrest a number of single, gay men, who became fathers through in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedures and surrogate mothers. The single fathers in question are reportedly being accused of child trafficking and state investigators are allegedly threatening to place their children in foster care for the duration of the investigation. Pushkina’s letter to Attorney General Igor Krasnov was obtained by RBK. These fathers are facing charges because under Russian law, only married couples and single women are allowed to act as donors during IVF, not single men — even though, according to the constitution, men and women have equal rights, Pushkina explained in the letter. She also added that although a bill designed to regulate IVF has been introduced to the State Duma Committee on Health Protection, it’s “lying motionless.” “This is unsurprising, given the influence the ROC [Russian Orthodox Church] has today,” Pushkina noted. Read more 
01.10.20 Rospotrebnadzor Not Ruling Out New Restrictions If Covid-19 Situation Worsens In Russia
Interfax
The Russian Federal Service for Health and Consumer Rights (Rospotrebnadzor) has not ruled out that new restrictions could be introduced if the Covid-19 situation deteriorates in Russia. "If the number of cases continues to increase, additional restrictive measures may be put in place. Everything depends on the pace at which the sickness rate will grow," deputy director for clinical and analytical work of Rospotrebnadzor's Central Research Institute of Epidemiology Natalya Pshenichnaya told Interfax in response to a relevant question. However, "if all sanitary requirements recommended today are adhered to, there is a great chance that no tightening of these measures will be required," she said. Read more 
01.10.20 Macron: Europe Should Talk With Russia To Enhance Security
AP
French President Emmanuel Macron urged Europe to seek a dialogue with Russia to enhance the continent’s security rather than relying primarily on the NATO military alliance. Speaking Wednesday in a news conference in Riga, the capital of the Baltic nation of Latvia, Macron said Europeans should be able to rethink their relation with Russia despite recent tensions after the poisoning of Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny. “Our collective security imposes that, given geography, we need to discuss with Russians,” he insisted. Read more 
01.10.20 'Next Question'
Meduza
On September 29, the Karelian Supreme Court considered an appeal in the case of historian and human rights activist Yuri Dmitriev. The court ended up overturning his previous three and half year sentence and sentencing him to 13 years in prison. This decision is unprecedented, even among Russian courts — the historian’s defense lawyer has already announced plans to challenge the verdict. Meanwhile, human rights defenders and Dmitriev’s colleagues are calling the sentence the “system’s revenge” for his research on the Soviet Gulag. In a (not so successful) attempt to discuss the political dimension of Dmitriev’s case, Meduza spoke to his defense lawyer, Viktor Anufriev, and attorney Igor Perov, the representative for the victim in the case, Dmitriev’s foster daughter. Read more 
01.10.20 ‘We’re Out Of Beds’
The Moscow Times
Russia’s Resurgent Coronavirus Outbreak Is Approaching First Peak. Moscow has readied additional hospitals for Covid-19 patients after the Russian capital reached capacity last week. Read more 
01.10.20 Nornickel To Invest Over 100 Bln Rubles In Fuel, Energy Complex Modernization By 2024
Interfax
MMC Norilsk Nickel (Nornickel) plans to increase investments in the modernization of its fuel and energy complex in 2020-2024 by over 100 billion rubles, the Arctic mining and smelting giant said in a press release. "These plans envisage an expansion of a large-scale investment program in energy infrastructure on Taimyr Peninsula that has been launched to provide energy resources to new growth projects. The expansion is specifically focused on industrial safety of all facilities including those built on permafrost," the company said. The enhanced investment program includes replacement of equipment at heat and hydro power stations, upgrade of power grid and gas pipeline systems and modernization of fuel tank storages. Read more 
30.09.20 Moscow Announces Two-Week School Break To Contain Coronavirus
The Moscow Times
Moscow schoolchildren will stay home for an extra week this fall break in order to slow the renewed spread of the coronavirus, Mayor Sergei Sobyanin announced Tuesday. The measures come as the Russian capital's daily Covid-19 caseload has risen from 625 to more than 2,200 since the beginning of September, stoking fears of a second wave. Officials have linked the rise to lax compliance with health guidelines layered onto the seasonal flu outbreak, but maintained that Russia was still in the middle of its first wave. Read more 
30.09.20 Court Adds Almost 10 Years To Historian Yuri Dmitriev’s Prison Sentence
Meduza
Karelia’s Supreme Court has overturned historian Yuri Dmitriev’s 3.5-year prison term and sentenced him to 13 years in prison under a criminal conviction for violent sexual acts. This was reported to Mediazona by Igor Perov, the lawyer representing Dmitriev’s foster daughter. According to rights group Memorial, Dmitriev’s lawyer, Viktor Anufriev, wasn’t present during the trial. Instead, he was given an appointed representative, lawyer Artem Cherkasov. Dmitriev’s initial 3.5 year prison sentence was handed down to him on July 22, 2020, when the Petrozavodsk City Court found him guilty of committing violent sexual actions against his underage foster daughter. Dmitriev was acquitted of felony charges of creating child pornography and illegally owning a firearm. Given the time Dmitriev had already served in pretrial detention, he was expected to go free in November 2020. Read more 
29.09.20 ‘Stop The Hostilities’
Meduza
The Kremlin’s stance on renewed fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Read more 
29.09.20 Russian National Nikulin Sentenced By US Court To 7 Years In Prison Over Cybercrime
Sputnik
The United States has accused Nikulin of illegally accessing a range of websites, including LinkedIn, Dropbox and Formspring, with the aim of fraud. A US court in San Francisco has sentenced Russian national Yevgeniy Nikulin to 88 months in prison for cybercrime-related offences. Nikulin's lawyer has said that his defendant has about two years left to serve in prison, adding that his sentence will be appealed. Read more 
29.09.20 Daily Coronavirus Numbers Hit 8,000 In Russia
Interfax
Russia registered 8,135 new coronavirus cases and 61 coronavirus-related deaths in the past 24 hours, the operative headquarters said in a statement on Monday. "Over the past day, 8,135 Covid-19 cases were confirmed in 84 regions of Russia, including 2,200 asymptomatic cases (27%) identified proactively," the headquarters said. The daily number of Covid-19 cases has been growing in Russia since the beginning of September, when over 5,000 cases were reported. The numbers reached 6,000 by September 19, for the first time since July, and passed 7,000 on September 25. The growth has been the biggest in Moscow: the city recorded 2,217 new coronavirus cases over the past day. Read more 
29.09.20 Lawyer: Russian Suspect Denies Involvement In Downing MH17
AP
One of the suspects charged in the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 over eastern Ukraine in 2014 denies any involvement and wants to speak in court to explain his version of events, his lawyer said Monday as the trial in absentia of three Russians and a Ukrainian resumed in a Dutch courtroom. Sabine ten Doesschate, one of the Dutch lawyers representing Russian suspect Oleg Pulatov, told judges that he insists he had nothing to do with the downing of the Boeing 777 jet and murder of all 298 passengers and crew on board the Amsterdam-to-Kuala Lumpur flight on July 17, 2014. Read more 
29.09.20 In Baltics, Macron Defends French Dialogue With Russia
Reuters
French President Emmanuel Macron insisted on Monday that Europe should cooperate with Russia to build peace in Europe, despite calls among European Union peers to review his stance towards Moscow after the poisoning of a Russian opposition leader. Over the past year, Macron has tried to reduce distrust between Russia and the West, hoping to enlist Russian help in solving the world’s most intractable crises. But Macron’s efforts have upset other EU governments, particularly those in the east that escaped Moscow’s orbit after the Cold War. They say little has changed to merit a thaw in relations on ice since Russian intervention in Ukraine in 2014. Read more 
29.09.20 Six Months Into Pandemic, Migrant Workers In Russia Live In Makeshift Camps...
The Moscow Times
Along the Caucasus Highway in Russia’s southern republic of Dagestan, about 30 kilometers from the border with Azerbaijan, hundreds of Azerbaijani migrants are sleeping in tents for weeks at a time as they try to return home. Although Azerbaijan’s land border with Russia is officially closed, the country allows between 400 and 500 of its citizens to cross every Tuesday. While up to 360 people are allowed to stay in a tent camp near the village of Kullar supported by Russia’s Emergency Situations Ministry, over 1,000 others are sleeping wherever they can around the village, some without a roof over their heads, according to rights groups. “Next week I’ll be completely out of money,” Yusif Kurinov, 32, a seasonal construction worker who travels to Dagestan’s largest city of Makhachkala each year, told The Moscow Times at the Kullar camp. “That’s why I decided it’s time to go back.” Read more 
28.09.20 Number Of Injured In Overhead Crossing Collapse In Moscow Region Rises To Over 50
TASS
The number of people injured in an overhead pedestrian crossing collapse in the Moscow region increased to over 50 people, press service of the Main Directorate of the Russian Emergencies Ministry in the Moscow Region told TASS. "As of 13:00 Moscow time, 51 people were injured. All of them are in various hospitals. Some of them have turned to doctors on their own," the department said.
Read more 
28.09.20 Russian Dissident Navalny Recovering Faster Than Expected
AP
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny is recovering from the suspected assassination attempt last month faster than expected, one of his aides said Sunday. Navalny, who collapsed on a plane from Siberia to Moscow on Aug. 20 and spent nearly three weeks in a coma, was discharged last week from the Berlin hospital where he was being treated. His doctors said that based on Navalny’s progress a “complete recovery is possible.” “He is doing much better, I would say unexpectedly better,” Leonid Volkov, Navalny’s chief of staff, told German broadcaster RTL. “I think the recovery is really faster than expected, and of course this is good news that makes us very happy.” Read more 
28.09.20 Russian Hospitals Introduce New Rules Of Operation To Prevent COVID-19 Spread
TASS
New rules of operation aimed at coronavirus prevention enter force in Russian hospitals on September 28, according to a Ministry of Health order published at the Russian legal information website. According to the new rules, patients with severe or medium respiratory diseases or pneumonia will be put in special boxed room until their COVID-19 results are ready. Patients with negative result will be put in rooms for 2 to 4 patients, while patients with positive results will be transferred to specialized coronavirus clinics. Read more 
28.09.20 Bottas Wins In Russia As Hamilton Misses F1 Win Record
AP
Lewis Hamilton’s toughest opponents in the Russian Grand Prix weren’t even on the track. They were in the stewards’ office. Hamilton’s Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas cruised to the win Sunday after Hamilton, who was leading, was penalized 10 seconds for practicing his starts in the wrong place before the race. Hamilton came into the race looking to match Michael Schumacher’s record of 91 wins in Formula One but had to settle for third behind Bottas and Max Verstappen. Bottas built a sizeable lead over Verstappen with ease and eased to his first win since the season-opening Austrian Grand Prix. Read more 
28.09.20 Merkel Visited Kremlin Critic Navalny In Hospital
Reuters
German Chancellor Angela Merkel visited Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny while he was undergoing treatment in a Berlin hospital for poisoning, Der Spiegel reported, underscoring how seriously she is taking the case. Citing no sources, Spiegel said Merkel went to see Navalny in the Charite hospital, where he received treatment for 32 days, after being flown from Russia to Berlin last month after falling ill on a domestic flight. Read more 
28.09.20 Russian Foreign Ministry Calls For Immediate Ceasefire, Negotiations In Nagorno-Karabakh
Sputnik
"We call on all parties to immediately cease fire and begin negotiations in order to stabilize the situation," the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement. Moscow has noted reports indicating the escalation of tensions in the disputed region and has also acknowledged evidence that there have been casualties as a result of the latest outbreak of violence, the ministry said. The Azerbaijani Ministry of Defen?e reported in the early hours of the morning that the Armenian military had begun shelling settlements along the line of contact. The authorities in Yerevan have also accused the Azerbaijani armed forces of shelling civilian settlements. Both sides have also claimed to have struck military targets throughout the day. Read more 
28.09.20 ‘He Knew The Killer By His Eyes’
Meduza
On September 10, a Moscow court moved Nikolai Mistryukov to house arrest. A key witness in the case against former Khabarovsk Governor Sergey Furgal, Mistryukov has reportedly agreed to a plea bargain with investigators. The case has been ongoing for more than a year, but officials have yet to reveal what evidence they have against Furgal, who was arrested this summer and booted from office on charges of orchestrating multiple contract killings roughly 15 years ago. Meduza explores what little is known about the case materials and who might have provided the testimony needed to lock him up. Read more 
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