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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

01/23/2013

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Davos Calls for Efficient State

Improving the work of the government and fighting corruption should be key priorities on Russia's reform agenda for the next few years, participants in the World Economic Forum said Wednesday.

Medvedev to Address Various Scenarios at Davos

Russian officials visiting the World Economic Forum 13 years ago were puzzled by U.S. journalist Trudy Rubin's famous question about the newly elected Russian president: "Who is Mr. Putin?"

What the Papers Say, Jan. 22, 2013

BBC Monitoring
A roundup of today's Russian-language newspapers

What the Papers Say, Jan. 23, 2013

BBC Monitoring
A roundup of today's Russian-language newspapers

Bill to Limit Gubernatorial Elections Approved

State Duma deputies on Wednesday overwhelming passed in its first reading a bill that would give regional assemblies the right to abolish direct elections for governors, likely weakening a key pro-democracy reform signed last year by then-President Dmitry Medvedev.

Suicide Sheds Light on Asylum Challenges

The suicide of activist Alexander Dolmatov in a Dutch extradition center has highlighted the challenges for Russian opposition members to get political asylum in Europe, but his tragic case does not mean that obtaining asylum has become impossible, experts said Tuesday.

Countrywide Public Smoking Ban Looms

Suffocating bars, smoke-filled restaurants and ash-laden office stairwells could soon be a thing of the past if legislation aimed at banning smoking in public places passes the remaining few hurdles and gets signed into law.

Rights Defenders Fear for Life of Arrested Activist

Rights defenders said Tuesday that they fear for the life of an opposition activist on hunger strike since a Moscow court extended his arrest over violence at an anti-Kremlin protest.

Hospital Plans Shelved Amid Uproar

St. Petersburg authorities said Wednesday that they had shelved a plan to transform a local hospital into a clinic for officials after a huge public outcry against the initiative.

VEB Account Involved in Fraud Investigation

The Moscow Times
An Estonian lawmaker on Tuesday proposed that a parliamentary commission be set up to look into fraud linked to an account at Russian state-owned lender VEB, a news report said.

Gasoline Prices Soar as New Standards Kick In

Gasoline prices are climbing this month after a higher fuel tax came into effect and the ban on the dirtier Euro-2 fuel kicked in.

Zhirinovsky Wants to Ban English Words

The Moscow Times
Nationalist rabble-rouser Vladimir Zhirinovsky said his Liberal Democratic Party is preparing legislation that would ban the use of English and other foreign words that have Russian equivalents.

Tetra Pak Promotes Sustainable Forestry

Nikolai Zinovyev thinks you have to be slightly crazy to be a wildlife photographer.

Gref Seeks Exemption From Bank Account Ban

The Moscow Times
Sberbank CEO German Gref called on lawmakers to exempt Russian-owned banks from the legislation intended to prohibit state officials from keeping their money in foreign banks, Interfax reported Wednesday.

Lavrov Says Magnitsky Act 'Odious' but Wants Constructive Ties

Reuters
Russia wants constructive relations with the United States despite disputes over U.S. legislation designed to punish Russian human rights abusers and other difficulties in ties, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Wednesday.

Russia to Submit Arctic Claims by Year's End

The federal government will submit its final Arctic territorial claims with the United Nations by the end of the year, the country's leading Arctic scientist said.

Domestic Firms to Mass-Produce Luxury Cars

The Moscow Times
In addition to the presidential limousine, domestic producers are expected to manufacture luxury vehicles for state officials and the mass market as part of the Cortege project, Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov said in an interview with Rossiiskaya Gazeta.

City Has New Plans to Battle Jams

The Moscow government will spend an additional 67 billion ($2.2 billion) in 2013 to ease traffic congestion, city transportation chief Maxim Liksutov said Wednesday.

Syria Evacuation Could Prove Risky

The Associated Press
The Kremlin's assistance to Russians fleeing Syria on Tuesday marks a turning point in its view of the civil war, representing increasing doubts about Bashar Assad's hold on power and a sober understanding that it has to start rescue efforts before it becomes too late.

Protest Erupts Outside Dutch Embassy

The Moscow Times
Police detained eight activists from the Other Russia movement on Wednesday during an unsanctioned rally outside the Dutch Embassy.

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