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Feb 20, 2012

Putin to win Russian election in first round: poll

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Vladimir Putin will be elected president in the first round of March’s election with more than half the vote, avoiding a runoff that would dent his authority on the eve of his planned return to the Kremlin’s top job, a state pollster predicted Monday.

Prime Minister Putin hopes to convincingly win the March 4 election in order to take the sting out of a growing urban protest movement which casts him as an authoritarian leader who rules through a corrupt and tightly controlled political system.

Feb 16, 2012

Russia investigates TV channel over protest coverage

MOSCOW, Feb 16 (Reuters) – Russian prosecutors said on
Thursday they had opened an investigation into an independent
television channel over its coverage of protests against
Vladimir Putin’s 12-year rule, less than three weeks before a
presidential election.

Prime Minister Putin hopes to convincingly win the March 4
election in order to take the sting out of a growing urban
protest movement which casts him as an authoritarian leader who
rules through a corrupt and tightly controlled political system.

Feb 14, 2012

Russia faced major nuclear disaster in 2011-report

MOSCOW, Feb 14 (Reuters) – Russia came close to
nuclear disaster in late December when a blaze engulfed a
nuclear-powered submarine carrying atomic weapons, a leading
Russian magazine reported, contradicting official assurances
that it was not armed.

Russian officials said at the time that all nuclear weapons
aboard the Yekaterinburg nuclear submarine had been unloaded
well before a fire engulfed the 167-metre (550 feet) vessel and
there had been no risk of a radiation leak.

Feb 10, 2012

Putin made Russian corruption ‘civilised’-campaign chief

MOSCOW, Feb 10 (Reuters) – Vladimir Putin has tamed
the gangster capitalism which accompanied the collapse of the
Soviet Union to make Russian corruption “normal and civilised”,
his presidential election campaign chief said in an interview
published on Friday.

Russia is ranked as the most corrupt major power and in
leaked documents U.S. diplomats cast “alpha-dog” Putin as ruling
a corrupt autocracy that allows crooked officials and spies to
siphon off cash from the world’s biggest energy producer.

Feb 9, 2012

Gorbachev: Russia faces turmoil as Putin won’t change

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev said on Thursday Russia faced turmoil because Vladimir Putin was unable and unwilling to carry out fundamental reform of a tightly-controlled political system.

Prime Minister Putin, facing the biggest protests of his 12-year rule, has tried to present himself to Russia’s 109 million voters as a leader who can carry out gradual reform, after imposing order on the chaos of the 1990s.

Feb 9, 2012

Russia faces turmoil as Putin won’t change – Gorbachev

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev said on Thursday Russia faced turmoil because Vladimir Putin was unable and unwilling to carry out fundamental reform of a tightly-controlled political system.

Prime Minister Putin, facing the biggest protests of his 12-year rule, has tried to present himself to Russia’s 109 million voters as a leader who can carry out gradual reform, after imposing order on the chaos of the 1990s.

Dec 29, 2011

Russia battles fire on nuclear submarine

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia used helicopters and tugboats to battle a fire that engulfed a nuclear submarine docked at a shipyard on Thursday, but emergency officials said radiation levels were normal.

Television pictures showed a giant plume of smoke above the yard in the Murmansk region of northern Russia and said helicopters were trying to douse flames which witnesses said rose 10 meters (30 feet) above the stricken vessel.

Dec 27, 2011

Putin ejects Kremlin “puppet master” after protests

MOSCOW (Reuters) – The architect of Vladimir Putin’s tightly controlled political system became one its most senior victims on Tuesday when he was shunted out of the Kremlin in the wake of the biggest opposition protests of Putin’s 12-year rule.

The sacrifice of Vladislav Surkov, branded the Kremlin’s ‘puppet master’ by enemies and friends alike, is also a rare admission of failure for Russia’s ‘alpha dog’ leader: Surkov’s system was Putin’s system.

Dec 25, 2011

Russia’s Putin risks losing touch amid protests

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Vladimir Putin is looking increasingly out of touch in Russia after the opposition brought tens of thousands of people out onto the streets of Moscow for the second time in two weeks to demand a parliamentary election be re-run.

But the looming New Year holiday in Russia means there is likely to be a pause in the biggest opposition protests since he rose to power 12 years ago and he will hope they will now at least temporarily lose momentum.

Dec 25, 2011

Analysis: Russia’s Putin risks losing touch amid protests

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Vladimir Putin is looking increasingly out of touch in Russia after the opposition brought tens of thousands of people out onto the streets of Moscow for the second time in two weeks to demand a parliamentary election be re-run.

But the looming New Year holiday in Russia means there is likely to be a pause in the biggest opposition protests since he rose to power 12 years ago and he will hope they will now at least temporarily lose momentum.