When a young Vladimir Putin decided to fulfill his childhood dream of becoming a spy, he headed to the local branch of the KGB in Soviet Leningrad.
In a potentially face-losing U-turn, the Russian government has reversed its previous denunciation to endorse legislation proposing to reimburse the rich and powerful for any overseas assets seized by foreign authorities.
President Vladimir Putin dismissed Western sanctions as "utter foolishness" on Thursday and said they would not stop Russia developing into a stronger economic power.
The Russian army has reported rescuing a floundering polar bear cub, apparently lost or abandoned by its mother, not far from a protected "polar bear nursery" in the Arctic.
Finnish department stores and fashion chain group Stockmann said it will close fashion shops in Russia and seek to sell its mail order business as part of a strategy review, sending its shares higher.
Arts & Ideas
Russia and Abroad
Itĺs a challenging time for German and Russian businesses, especially smaller and mid-sized companies. Some had recently localized production in Russia, making long-term commitments to the country. Large investment funds had been looking for prospects in the real estate market. Now some of these investors have put their plans on hold.
The Austrian season of culture, which took place in Russia in 2013 and 2014, gave artists from both countries an unprecedented opportunity for creative exchange and joint projects. The cooperation of institutes and artists from all areas of culture expanded far beyond the framework of particular events.
Moscow Times Guides
Russiaĺs hotel and hospitality business is booming ľ with uniquely designed hostelries, updated Soviet chic, more spaces to congregate and celebrate, and summer menus to welcome the warm weather.
Ten years ago you seemed to wait forever for a seat in the sun.
At the first hint of spring the English, umbrella under arm, grasp a picnic basket, or root under a raincoat to light a barbecue. In Russia, I was told, you had to be sure the snow would not return. If you were cautious, like business people, that meant waiting... through May... and into June, before you were sure the weather wouldn't freeze your battens and or whip your canvas awnings.