MOSCOW, Dec 14 (Reuters) – Russia denied on Friday that it
has changed its position on Syria, trying to dampen speculation
that remarks by a senior envoy point to policy differences in
Moscow as the civil war turns against President Bashar al-Assad.
Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov, a Kremlin envoy to
the Middle East, made unusually pessimistic assessment of the
situation in Syria on Thursday when he acknowledged that Assad’s
opponents might win.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – By tradition, Cossacks protected Russia’s borderlands, but on Tuesday descendants of the Tsarist warrior caste patrolled a patch of central Moscow as part of a resurgence encouraged by President Vladimir Putin.
A handful of men in high lambswool hats and epaulettes paced a slushy square around a major railway station, looking for illegal trade and other infractions in what they called a trial run for further patrols in the heart of the Russian capital.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian lawmakers introduced a bill to the state Duma, or lower house of parliament, on Friday which would force foreign-funded media to register as ‘foreign agents’, adding to a raft of bills that critics say is aimed at cracking down on dissent.
The law would complement another piece of legislation that forces non-government organizations that engage in “political activities” and receive money from abroad to register themselves using the same term, which is steeped in Cold-War era hostility.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia increased pressure on the U.S. Congress on Friday not to pass legislation that would punish Russian officials for human rights violations, warning Washington that it had prepared tough retaliatory measures.
Congress was due to vote on a bill named after Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky later on Friday, the third anniversary of his death in detention. The bill is designed to deny visas for officials involved in his imprisonment, abuse or death.
MOSCOW, Nov 16 (Reuters) – Russia said on Friday nine
suspected militants were charged with belonging to outlawed
Islamic organisation Hizb ut-Tahrir, which police said had
planned bomb attacks on civilian targets in Moscow.
Police said they found firearms, explosives and counterfeit
currency worth $1 million and 2 million euros during a raid on
the apartments of Russian and Tajik citizens earlier this month.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian President Vladimir Putin fired two defence ministry deputies on Thursday, broadening a reshuffle after the sacking of the defence minister last week over a fraud investigation.
Putin dismissed deputy minister Yelena Kozlova, who oversaw finances, and Dmitry Chushkin, who was in charge of communications technologies, naming two associates of the new Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu as their replacements.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Viktor Zubkov was the friend Russian President Vladimir Putin turned to when he wanted help blowing out his birthday candles 12 years ago.
At the time, Zubkov was an obscure tax man but had already forged the close relationship with Putin on which the political career of Russia’s defense minister may have foundered this week in a tale of alleged corruption, adultery and Kremlin rivalries.
MOSCOW, Nov 6 (Reuters) – Russian President Vladimir Putin
publicly dismissed his defence minister on Tuesday after a
multi-million dollar corruption scandal and appointed a longtime
ally to oversee military reforms.
Putin announced on television that he had fired Anatoly
Serdyukov, who had become a liability due to an investigation
into the sale of ministry assets at suspiciously low prices.
MOSCOW, Oct 30 (Reuters) – Gunmen shot dead a Muslim
religious leader in Russia’s Dagestan region on Tuesday in an
attack likely to worsen a spiral of militant violence that
threatens Moscow’s hold on the restive North Caucasus.
Karimulla Ibragimov was at least the fifth Muslim leader
killed this year in Dagestan following a rise in tension between
moderate and more radical Muslims in the southern Russian
MOSCOW (Reuters) – International envoy Lakhdar Brahimi expressed regret on Monday at the failure of a four-day truce in Syria that he had arranged between President Bashar al-Assad’s government and rebel forces.
Brahimi also said after talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Moscow that there was no immediate plan to send U.N. peacekeepers to the Middle Eastern country.