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Feb 25, 2013

Pressure mounts on Bolshoi Theatre chief after acid attack

MOSCOW, Feb 25 (Reuters) – Pressure is growing on the
manager of Russia’s Bolshoi Theatre after a prime-time
television show criticised him over a “decade of scandal”,
including an acid attack on its ballet chief.

The show, hosted by a top lawmaker from President Vladimir
Putin’s ruling party, said General Manager Anatoly Iksanov’s
more than 12 years at the helm had been marked by a decline in
the reputation of one of Russia’s great cultural institutions.

Feb 25, 2013

Putin tries to curb smoking, tobacco sales

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia will ban smoking in many public places from June under a law central to President Vladimir Putin’s plans to make citizens healthier, raise life expectancy and help the economy.

Under the law, signed by Putin on Saturday and passed by parliament last week, smoking will gradually be banned at work, in the subway, restaurants, cafes, ships and long-distance trains in a nation with one of the world’s top smoking rates.

Feb 25, 2013

Russia’s Putin tries to curb smoking, tobacco sales

MOSCOW, Feb 25 (Reuters) – Russia will ban smoking in many
public places from June under a law central to President
Vladimir Putin’s plans to make citizens healthier, raise life
expectancy and help the economy.

Under the law, signed by Putin on Saturday and passed by
parliament last week, smoking will gradually be banned at work,
in the subway, restaurants, cafes, ships and long-distance
trains in a nation with one of the world’s top smoking rates.

Feb 22, 2013

Russian assembly backs law limiting foreign investments

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian lawmakers gave initial backing on Friday to legislation that would prevent senior officials holding bank accounts or stocks abroad, a move by Vladimir Putin to show he is tackling corruption.

If approved by both houses of parliament and signed by the president, the package of laws will give deputies and other state officials three months to decide whether to close foreign accounts and sell stocks abroad – or quit.

Feb 21, 2013

A year on, Pussy Riot claim a victory in Russia

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Yekaterina Samutsevich has few regrets about the day a year ago when she marched into a Russian Orthodox church with four other members of the Pussy Riot punk band, pulled on a balaclava and reached for her guitar.

Guards grabbed her before she could join in the band’s “punk prayer” against Vladimir Putin, and she went on to spend several months in detention before facing trial last year with two bandmates who are still in jail.

Feb 20, 2013

Putin ally quits Russian parliament in property scandal

MOSCOW (Reuters) – An ally of Vladimir Putin resigned from the Russian parliament on Wednesday to fight accusations that he failed to declare ownership of property in the United States and to protect the reputation of the president’s party.

Vladimir Pekhtin, who had already stepped down as head of parliament’s ethics committee, denied owning real estate abroad despite documents posted by bloggers on the Internet showing his name on the deeds of property in Florida worth $2 million.

Feb 18, 2013

Russia asks: How do you stop space objects hitting Earth?

MOSCOW/VIENNA (Reuters) – What can man do to prevent Earth being hit by meteorites and asteroids?

Russia has found, to its cost, that it has no answers. But U.S. and European experts may be able to help with a few ideas that at first glance seem straight out of science fiction, including smashing spacecraft into asteroids, using the sun’s rays to vaporize them, or blasting them with nuclear bombs.

Feb 18, 2013

Russian court rejects attempt to block dead lawyer’s trial

MOSCOW, Feb 18 (Reuters) – A Russian court on Monday pressed
ahead with plans to try a dead whistleblowing lawyer on tax
evasion charges, despite an attempt by relatives to block a
trial they say is inhuman and politically motivated.

Sergei Magnitsky died in 2009 after complaining he was
denied treatment as his health declined in jail, prompting the
United States last year to bar entry to Russians accused of
involvement in his death or human rights abuses.

Feb 14, 2013

At Bolshoi, show goes on, month after acid horror

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Principal dancer Artem Ovcharenko seems to defy gravity as he glides through the air, then lands silently with a flourish of his arm during a rehearsal at Russia’s revered Bolshoi Theater.

Other dancers spin through the air behind him, a few warm up at the side and two ballerinas walk on their toes while Viktor Barykin, the repetiteur or dance coach, barks instructions.

Feb 5, 2013

Liberal Russian governor faces ouster as Putin tightens grip

MOSCOW (Reuters) – President Vladimir Putin’s attempts to reassert his grip on Russia after months of protests look likely to force the removal of one of the few liberal leaders outside Moscow.

The local parliament in the vast Kirov region in central Russia has called a no-confidence vote in governor Nikita Belykh for February 14 which is likely to oust the man appointed by Dmitry Medvedev, Putin’s predecessor as president.

    • About Timothy

      "Timothy Heritage is Brussels Bureau Chief and European Affairs Editor, responsible for coverage of the European Union. He has previously been based in Moscow, Jerusalem, Paris, London, Warsaw and Belgrade, covering events ranging from the fall of Communism and conflict in the Balkans and Middle East to the euro zone debt crisis."
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