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Jun 20, 2013

Russia’s Bolshoi ballet chief left nearly blind by acid attack

MOSCOW (Reuters) – The artistic director of Russia’s Bolshoi Ballet, burned in an acid attack allegedly masterminded by a dancer, is nearly blind despite 18 operations to save his sight, a theatre spokeswoman said on Thursday.

The attack on Sergei Filin, which exposed poisonous rivalries over roles, power and pay at the theatre, has cast a long shadow over Russia’s premier cultural symbol, from which it is still struggling to escape.

Jun 15, 2013

Fans rally for Bolshoi dancer fired in acid attack aftermath

MOSCOW (Reuters) – More than a hundred Russian ballet fans rallied in Moscow on Saturday in support of a top dancer who says he is being chased out of the Bolshoi Theatre due to disputes in the wake of an acid attack on its artistic director earlier this year.

The attack on Sergei Filin in January stunned Russians and exposed the bitter rivalries and behind-the-scenes power struggles at the theatre, a symbol of Russian culture since the 18th century.

Jun 11, 2013

Russia passes anti-gay law, activists detained

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia’s lower house passed a law on Tuesday banning gay “propaganda”, a measure that human rights groups say has already fuelled attacks on homosexuals as President Vladimir Putin pursues an increasingly conservative social agenda.

As parliament debated the bill, gay activists who had taken part in a “kissing protest” outside parliament to demonstrate against the law were harassed and pelted with eggs by anti-gay protesters, then about 20 of them were arrested.

Jun 11, 2013

Russian gay rights activists detained after ‘kissing protest’

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian police detained more than 20 gay rights activists involved in a “kissing protest” on Tuesday outside parliament where lawmakers were preparing to pass a bill banning homosexual “propaganda”.

The bill is one of a series of socially conservative measures garnering support in the Kremlin-dominated parliament during President Vladimir Putin’s third term.

Jun 6, 2013

Insight: Russia’s Syria diplomacy, a game of smoke and mirrors

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Sitting at a long table in Russia’s Foreign Ministry, Syrian opposition leaders outlined a plan to protect Moscow’s interests if the Kremlin agreed to the removal of its longstanding ally, President Bashar al-Assad.

Throughout the meeting last July, one of many since the start of Syria’s civil war, Russian officials sat stony-faced. When the Syrians had finished, there was a long silence.

Jun 6, 2013

Russia’s Syria diplomacy, a game of smoke and mirrors

MOSCOW, June 6 (Reuters) – Sitting at a long table in
Russia’s Foreign Ministry, Syrian opposition leaders outlined a
plan to protect Moscow’s interests if the Kremlin agreed to the
removal of its longstanding ally, President Bashar al-Assad.

Throughout the meeting last July, one of many since the
start of Syria’s civil war, Russian officials sat stony-faced.
When the Syrians had finished, there was a long silence.

May 31, 2013

Moscow threatens to speed missiles to Syria but also offers to delay

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia could speed up delivery of anti-aircraft missiles to Syria if the West intervenes, but also floated the idea of suspending the shipment, Russian media reported on Friday, as Moscow set out its negotiating position ahead of peace talks.

A Russian arms industry source was quoted by Interfax news agency as threatening to hasten delivery of the hotly-contested S-300 missiles if the West were to impose a no-fly zone or Israel were to launch new air strikes.

May 31, 2013

Russian S-300 missiles unlikely to reach Syria for months

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian S-300 anti-aircraft missiles will probably arrive in Syria only after several months, but more Israeli air strikes or the creation of a no-fly zone would speed up delivery, a Russian arms industry source said.

Russia, an ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, said it would fulfil an order for the long-range surface-to-air missiles to Syria as a deterrent against foreign military intervention.

May 30, 2013

Assad says Russia will honor weapons deals

BEIRUT/MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia has yet to send advanced anti-aircraft missiles to Syria, a source close to the Russian defense ministry said on Thursday, but President Bashar al-Assad said Moscow was still committed to the contract to deliver them.

A Lebanese newspaper had earlier quoted Assad as saying in an interview that Moscow had already sent a first shipment of S-300 missiles. When the actual interview was broadcast, however, the Syrian leader stopped short of saying the missiles had arrived.

May 16, 2013

Russia says Iran must take part in proposed Syria talks

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Iran must take part in a proposed international conference to end Syria’s civil war, but that Western states wanted to limit the participants and possibly predetermine the outcome of the talks.

Conflicting comments from Russia and the West over Iran’s role in the possible meeting have added to disagreements which already threaten to derail the conference proposed by Moscow and Washington last week.

    • About Thomas

      "Thomas Grove covers politics and general news in Moscow. He worked in Istanbul from 2006-2010, covering political, financial and energy news."
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