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What the Papers Say, Mar. 1, 2013


1. Nikolai Sergeyev and Vladislav Trifonov article headlined "Skolkovo money not used anew" says that the Russian Investigations Committee has begun a large-scale check on financial machinations revealed by the Audit Chamber in the Skolkovo innovation fund; pp 1, 5 (1,103 words).

2. Anna Balashova and Vladislav Novyy article headlined "Marshall Capital hangs up receiver" says that businessman Arkady Rotenberg has bought a 10.7-per-cent stake in the communications company Rostelekom from the company Marshall Capital; p 1 (253 words).

3. Khalil Aminov et al. article headlined "Aleksandr Khloponin sent to resorts" says that the presidential envoy to the North Caucasus Federal District will head the board of directors at the state-run company Resorts of the North Caucasus; pp 1, 9 (590 words).

4. Irina Nagornykh et al. article headlined "Duma elections being returned to 2003 rules" looks at the presidential bill on a new mechanism of electing State Duma deputies; pp 1-2 (1,067 words).

5. Natalya Bashlykova et al. article headlined "A Just Russia rises to governor" says that State Duma deputy from the A Just Russia party, Konstantin Ilkovskiy, has been appointed acting Transbaykal Territory governor. Experts say that the party will give up opposition behaviour in return; p 2 (658 words).

6. Maksim Ivanov article headlined "Government holds back public initiative" says that Minister for Open Government Affairs Mikhail Abyzov has cast doubts that a Russian Public Initiative system, through which Russians could send proposals for consideration of the authorities, will be introduced by 15 April as the president ordered; p 2 (425 words).

7. Sofya Samokhina and Sergey Goryashko article headlined "Small 'Rodina' found for All-Russia People's Front" says that the party Rodina, which may join the All-Russia People's Front, has published its political programme; p 2 (641 words).

8. Aleksey Chernyshev article headlined "Getting closer to Far [East]" compares former Maritime Territory governor Sergey Darkin and his successor Vladimir Miklushevskiy; p 4 (2,401 words).

9. Grigoriy Tumanov article headlined "Killing penitentiary system" says that the number of murders in Russian prisons have increased 53 per cent during a year; p 5 (450 words).

10. Petr Netreba article headlined "Reorganization brewing up in government staff" says that Aleksandra Levitskaya has resigned as the first deputy chief of the government staff; p 6 (581 words).

11. Article by World Bank head Jim-yong Kim headlined "'Each country should ask this question itself"' focuses on Russia's education system and its place in the global economy; p 6 (820 words).

12. Kirill Belyaninov article headlined "American armour to cover Syrian opposition" says that the Friends of Syria meeting in Rome has shown that the USA has changed its view of the Syrian conflict and is ready to provide military aid to the Syrian opposition; p 7 (616 words).

13. Andrey Kolesnikov report headlined "High-ranking diplomatic relations" gives an account of President Vladimir Putin's meeting with his French counterpart in Moscow; p 7 (838 words).

14. Yelena Kiseleva and Ivan Safronov article headlined "Energiya worth better use" says that the Federal Space Agency will carry out a check on the missiles corporation RKK Energiya; p 9 (671 words).

15. Kirill Melnikov and Anna Solodovnikova article headlined "Rosneft in hurry to take over" says that the Russian oil company Rosneft plans to close a deal to buy TNK-BP by 1 April; p 11 (625 words).

16. Kirill Melnikov article headlined "Nikolay Tokarev not awaited in Zarubezhneft" says that Transneft head Nikolay Tokarev may not enter the board of directors of the state-run oil company Zarubezhneft allegedly over his conflict with Rosneft head Igor Sechin; p 11 (682 words).

Nezavisimaya Gazeta

1. Valeriya Khamrayeva and Aleksandra Samarina article headlined "Governor's non-partisan nature" says that A Just Russia MP Konstantin Ilkovskiy has been appointed acting Transbaykal Territory governor; pp 1, 3 (911 words).

2. Gleb Postnov article headlined "Sports passion with discount" says that residents of Kazan, where the World Students Games will be held in summer, are not interested in tickets despite their low cost; pp 1, 6 (439 words).

3. Darya Tsilyurik article headlined "Moscow and Paris have economy-focused talk" looks at the results of a meeting between Putin and his French counterpart in Moscow; pp 1, 8 (720 words).

4. Aleksandra Samarina article headlined "Moral code for Putin's elite" says that bloggers are studying income declarations submitted by Russian parliamentarians and as a result of these checks, dozens of MPs may resign from the State Duma and the Federation Council. Putin is taking advantage of the situation to increase control over the elites; pp 1-2 (968 words).

5. Svetlana Gamova article headlined "Tiraspol longs for rouble zone" says that the Dniester region has begun consultations with Russia on using the Russian rouble in the region, which is seen as one of the first steps to integrate with Russia; pp 1, 7 (748 words).

6. Vladimir Mukhin article headlined "Special-purpose blue helmets" says that the 15th separate motor-rifle peacekeeping brigade, deployed in Samara Region, is to be manned with contract soldiers only by the end of March. Experts do not rule out that the move is linked to the possible emergence of military conflicts in the post-Soviet space in 2013; pp 1-2 (809 words).

7. Editorial headlined "Neither to congregation nor to museum community" looks at relations between museums and the Russian Orthodox Church; p 2 (515 words).

8. Mikhail Vinogradov article headlined "Third term. Intermediate results" contemplates the results of the first year of Putin's third term in office; p 3 (765 words).

9. Ivan Rodin article headlined "Congressman shocked" says that a US congressman, who has co-authored the US Magnitskiy Act, has been denied entry to Russia. A war of blacklists seems to have begun despite official statements by Russia and the USA that they do not want this; p 3 (675 words).

10. Igor Naumov and Mikhail Sergeyev article headlined "Glazyev becomes symbol of crisis in Russian economy" says that presidential economic adviser Sergey Glazyev has recently become the main newsmaker in Russia. Along with his supposed disapproval of privatization, Glazyev calls for giving up the budget rule; p 4 (619 words).

11. Sergey Kulikov article headlined "Natural resources offered to private companies" says that over R3,000bn (some 98.36bn dollars at the current exchange rate) is needed to develop Russia's natural resources until 2020, but the state is ready to finance some R360bn; p 4 (649 words).

12. Dmitry Orlov article provides a list of 100 Russian leading politicians in February 2013 and says that the main trend of the month was the weakening of positions of government officials, heads of federal TV channels and leaders of the law-enforcement and security agencies. Putin remained the first in the list followed by Prime Minister Dmitriy Medvedev; p 5 (1,819 words).

13. Tatyana Ivzhenko article headlined "Kiev plays on disagreements between Russia and EU" says that Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych may pay a visit to Moscow in March; p 7 (919 words).

14. Nikolay Surkov article headlined "Friends of Syria to change balance of forces in conflict" says that participants in the Friends of Syria meeting in Rome have promised to increase support of the Syrian opposition. Meanwhile, the Islamists are gaining strength among the Syrian president's opponents; p 8 (547 words).

15. Vladimir Skosyrev article headlined "Abe ready to follow Thatcher's example" says that a conflict between Japan and China over the disputed Senkaku [Diaoyu] Islands is escalating; p 8 (629 words).


1. Liliya Biryukova article headlined "Mixed Duma" says that Putin is expected to submit to the State Duma a bill on a new mechanism of electing deputies in the near future; pp 1-2 (544 words).

2. Editorial headlined "Glazyev's U turn" comments on presidential economic adviser Sergey Glazyev's economic recommendations for the presidential administration; pp 1, 8 (411 words).

3. Irina Reznik report "Borodin's asylum" says that Andrey Borodin, former head of Bank of Moscow, has got political asylum in the UK; pp 1, 14 (1,100 words).

4. Maria Zheleznova article headlined "Prokhorov shares Yabloko" says that groups of deputies from businessman Mikhail Prokhorov's Civil Platform party have appeared in the parliaments of Kaliningrad Region, Kostroma Region, St Petersburg and Yakutia; p 3 (461 words).

5. Editorial headlined "Invisible foreigners" says that a group of Russian MPs has submitted to the State Duma a bill increasing personal responsibility of governors and mayors for ethnic relations in their regions; p 6 (266 words).

6. Aleksey Nikolskiy and Yevgeniya Pismennaya article headlined "Skolkovo under magnifying glass" looks at the latest developments in the probe into large-scale embezzlement at the Skolkovo innovation fund; p 3 (335 words).

7. Vitaliy Petlevoy article headlined "Diamond directors" looks at the nominees to the supervisory board of the Russian diamonds manufacturer Alrosa; p 12 (231 words).

8. Bela Lyauv article headlined "Resettlement without additional payment" says that a new plan to relocate the offices of ministries and federal agencies from Moscow to new territories adjusted to the city is fourfold cheaper and may be effective; p 10 (486 words).

9. Maksim Trudolyubov article headlined "Republic: Putin's award" says that only harmless legislative initiatives that do not seriously affect anyone, but may cause a sensation and please the majority are implemented in Russia; p 7 (431 words).

10. Yelizaveta Sergina and Igor Tsukanov article headlined "Malofeyev yields Rostelekom" says that businessman Arkadiy Rotenberg has bought a 10.7-per-cent stake in the communications company Rostelekom from the company Marshall Capital; p 10 (926 words).

11. Vasiliy Kashin article headlined "Foreign policy: Dima Yakovlev's case" says that Russia could not but react to the US Magnitskiy Act with a respective document, and it should have been sharp-tongued but harmless to Russian-US relations. However, a complicated domestic political situation forced the Russian authorities to include tough measures against the USA; p 7 (625 words).

12. Anastasiya Kornya et al. article headlined "Transbaykal Territory by right" says that Transbaykal Territory governor Ravil Geniatulin has been dismissed. The Vladimir Region governor is expected to suffer the same fate; p 2 (508 words).


1. Aleksandr Grigoryev article headlined "Russian Investigations Committee looks for R3.5bn allocated to Skolkovo" says that a probe into financial machinations at the Skolkovo innovation fund is under way. Metcombank, which is associated with Skolkovo fund president Viktor Vekselberg, is involved in the fraud; pp 1, 4 (707 words).

2. Ivan Cheberko article headlined "Defense Ministry and Rosimushchestvo to check RKK Energiya" says that a check on the space company RKK Energiya will be carried out as regards the execution of the state defense order, international activities in the space sector and performance of its management; pp 1, 4 (583 words).

3. Aleksey Mikhaylov and Vladimir Voloshin article headlined "Disabled people obliged to prove their being unfit for military service" says that the Defense and Health ministries have toughened demands for disabled people of conscription age; pp 1, 4 (485 words).

4. Sergey Ispolatov and Margarita Kazantseva article headlined "Far East Development Ministry close to being disbanded" says that the recently-established Far East Development Ministry may be abolished because a state programme for socio-economic development of the Far East and Transbaykal Territory has not been fulfilled; pp 1, 4 (883 words).

5. Anastasiya Dulenkova article headlined "Only government plans to go to 'new Moscow'" says that the Finance Ministry has suggested relocating only the offices of executive power bodies to the new territories adjusted to Moscow. The parliament and courts will remain in the city; pp 1, 3 (597 words).

6. Svetlana Lebedeva and Igor Chekunov article headlined "German authorities take away child from Russian scientists" says that a Russian family demands that the German authorities return their son to them. The boy was taken away by the German guardianship agencies in October 2012, when the Russian couple decided to return to Russia; pp 1, 4 (857 words).

7. Eduard Limonov article headlined "Red colonel" looks at Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez and says that he will hardly live after four cancer surgeries; pp 1, 9 (586 words).

8. Sergey Podosenov article headlined "Russians against religion to be taught at school" says that a public opinion poll by the Levada Centre has shown that almost 43 per cent of Russians oppose religion to be taught at schools; p 2 (618 words).

9. Aleksandr Yunashev article headlined "Putin and Hollande argue about Syria" says that at a meeting in Moscow, the Russian and French presidents have tried to show that their relations have improved despite certain international policy disagreements; p 2 (495 words).

10. Benjamen Huetter brief interview with French President Francois Hollande, headlined "'Russia has been asking to ease visa regime for a long time. I will do this'", who speaks about the Russia-France cooperation; p 2 (348 words).

11. Svetlana Subbotina interview with newly-appointed acting Transbaykal Territory governor Konstantin Ilkovskiy, headlined "'President called me, but said no word about appointment'", who speaks about his new post; p 2 (406 words).

12. Anna Akhmadiyeva article headlined "Rospechat denies subsidies for Dozhd TV" says that the Federal Press and Mass Communications Agency has approved a list of electronic media outlets that will receive state support in 2013. The VGTRK (All-Russian TV and Radio Company) is a record holder in terms of the number of state subsidies, whereas Dozhd TV has not been put on the list; p 3 (849 words).

13. Vladimir Barinov article headlined "Sberbank gives its top managers to investigators" focuses on a corruption scandal involving three Sberbank top managers; p 5 (703 words).

14. Yelizaveta Mayetnaya article headlined "Russians not yet ready to cooperate with police" says that Levada Centre experts have concluded that Russian people do not trust the police and looks at the reasons behind the situation and the police's main problems; p 7 (1,279 words).

15. Dina Ushakova interview with Deputy Finance Minister Aleksey Moiseyev, headlined "Voluntary pension savings to be insured as deposits", who speaks about pension savings; p 8 (1,298 words).

16. Boris Mezhuyev article headlined "True-life consensus" proves the conservative nature of the Russian authorities; p 9 (774 words).

17. Maksim Kononenko article headlined "When and where" comments on information that well-known blogger and opposition activist Aleksey Navalnyy has illegally obtained the status of a lawyer; p 9 (766 words).

18. Maksim Sokolov article headlined "'Harmonious gallery of celestial bodies quietly swims in fog'" comments on a public opinion poll conducted by the Levada Centre in February, which found out Russians' preferences as to whom they would like to see as the president among prominent politicians if the election were held on 3 March; p 9 (679 words).

19. Vladimir Milov article headlined "Antimonopoly tariff" contemplates on high housing and utilities tariffs and ways to decrease them; p 9 (643 words).

Rossiiskaya Gazeta

1. Mikhail Falaleyev interview with Deputy Interior Minister Igor Zubov, headlined "Police and volunteer groups", who speaks about new bills regulating citizens' participation in ensuring law and order; pp 1, 17 (1,954 words).

2. Yuliya Krivoshapko report "It is difficult to be blog" says that users of the Russian Internet will have to pay taxes for mentioning brands and for hidden adverts; pp 1, 4 (700 words).

3. Ivan Yegorov article headlined "Poland afraid of missiles" says that Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolay Patrushev has met his Polish counterpart in Moscow to discuss the deployment of the European ABM; p 2 (900 words).

4. Valeriy Vyzhutovich article headlined "Power without party membership card" comments on an initiative to permit Russian regions to give up direct governor elections, which is expected to be approved by the State Duma in early March; p 3 (716 words).

5. Tatyana Zykova article headlined "Determining points of contact" describes the first Russian-Japanese forum held in Tokyo; p 5 (550 words).

6. Unattributed article features former Japanese Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori's speech at the first Russian-Japanese forum in Tokyo; p 5 (550 words).

7. Vladislav Kulikov article headlined "Jail for sale" looks at a prison reform, which envisages relocation of jails from downtowns to suburbs and construction of private jails, among other things; p 7 (516 words).

8. Niva Mirakyan article headlined "Pope's last day" says that Pope has abdicated; p 8 (316 words).

9. Yevgeniy Shestakov report "Chavez inaccessible" looks at the rumours about Hugo Chavez's death; p 8 (800 words).

Moskovsky Komsomolets

1. Anastasiya Gnedinskaya article headlined "Saved from America" looks at the fate of the Russian children, who were denied adoption by US citizens before the so-called Dima Yakovlev law, which bans US citizens from adopting Russian orphans, was drafted; pp 1, 5 (1,900 words).

2. Marina Ozerova article headlined "Good deputy is poor deputy" says that State Duma deputies are to submit income and property declarations for 2012 before 1 April; pp 1-2 (700 words).

3. Anastasiya Rodionova and Olga Rakhimdzhanova article headlined "March in opposite directions" says that two rallies will be held in Moscow on 2 March: by the opposition, for Muscovites' rights, and by the supporters of the ruling authorities, against foreign adoption; pp 1-2 (600 words).

4. Aleksandr Minkin article headlined "People, keep silence!", written as a letter to Putin, looks at the results of an opinion poll by the Levada Centre, which asked respondents whether Putin is responsible for the problems that Russia has been facing during his presidency; pp 1, 4 (650 words).

5. Andrey Sergiyenko report "Virtual fighter of invisible front" looks at information wars in the contemporary world; p 4 (500 words).

6. Pavel Chuvilyayev article headlined "Who among senators will give up senator seats?" looks at Federation Council senators who may resign following a bill banning Russian officials from having bank accounts abroad; p 2 (700 words).

7. Tatyana Zamakhina article headlined "Will Krayniy be left" says that Federal Fishery Agency head Andrey Krayniy, who is targeted in an investigation, may be dismissed; p 2 (400 words).

8. Darya Fedotova article "Private prisons may appear in Russia" says that human rights activists have welcomed the Federal Penal Service's idea to build private jails; p 3 (500 words).

9. Zhanna Golubitskaya article headlined "Astakhov 16+" says that Russian children's rights ombudsman Pavel Astakhov does not plan to resign following criticisms from journalists; p 3 (600 words).

10. Leonid Polyakov article headlined "Confirming choice" focuses on the results of Putin's first year in office after he was elected in 2012; p 3 (1,500 words).

11. Natalya Rozhkova report "CEC dreams about elections via Internet" says that the Central Electoral Commission (CEC) wants to suggest that Russians vote via the Internet; p 4 (450 words).

RBK Daily

1. Yulia Yakovleva article titled "Kremlin's gift" says an A Just Russia deputy has been appointed the acting head of Transbaykal Region; p 2 (500 words)

2. Aleksandr Litoy article titled "Unite and conquer" comments on proposed legislative measures that would see municipal heads fired for permitting inter-ethnic conflicts; p 2 (300 words).

3. Anastasiya Novikova article "Casting for council" looks ahead at the mechanisms that the government is expected to enact with regard to the formation of public councils under official bodies; p 2 (350 words).

4. Ivan Petrov article titled "Friend in service" recaps on the latest criminal case that is part of the large-scale probe into corruption at the Russian Defence Ministry; p 2 (500 words).

5. Inga Vorobyeva article titled "Can't figure out what's happening without a bottle" summarizes the outcomes of French President Francois Hollande visit to Moscow yesterday; p 4 (350 words).

6. Comment by legal expert Vladislav Kapkanov titled "Defamation is no sparrow" explains the ramifications of the recent recriminalization of defamation; p 6 (700 words).

7. Sergey Hayruk and Ivan Petrov article titled "Check for Vekselberg" says investigators are probing the suspected misuse of some R4bn (around 130m dollars) of funding allocated to the Skolkovo foundation; p 8 (600 words).

Komsomolskaya Pravda

1. Dmitriy Smirnov article titled "Vladimir Putin: 'A bottle of good wine isn't enough, you need a bottle of vodka to figure out what's happening here'" recaps on Putin's meeting with French President Francois Hollande in Moscow yesterday; p 2 (450 words).

2. Andrey Yegorov article titled "Magnitskiy Act author is shocked: you see, he didn't get let into Russia" says an American congressman was "disappointed" to learn that he was denied entry to Russia; p 3 (200 words).

3. Vladimir Vorsobin article headlined "Sending Chechen special troops to Pakistan proposed to Russia" sums up the main outcomes of Federation Council speaker Valentina Matviyenko's visit to Islamabad; p 4 (300 words).

4. Aleksandr Kots article titled "Private jails may appear in our country" says the Federal Penal Service has announced that some 170 correctional facilities would be closed in Russia in the near future; p 4 (250 words).

5. Aleksandr Khodyakin article titled "Maksim Kuzmin was stuffed with psychoactive substances in the USA after all" says that Maksim Kuzmin, the Russian boy adopted by US parents who died recently, was given unnecessary medication; p 5 (200 words).

6. Svetlana Volkova article titled "Unregistered residents to be tracked in the capital" says that special patrols to identify unregistered flat dwellers have started in Moscow; p 11 (350 words).

Novyye Izvestiya (weekly)

1. Nadezhda Krasilova article titled "Left for health reasons" reports on the resignation of millionaire senator Nikolay Olshankiy, who cited health reasons as being behind his decision to leave the Federation Council; p 2 (250 words).

Novaya Gazeta

1. Maria Yepifanova article headlined "Kremlin in defense of children" looks ahead at the mass rally planned for 2 March in support of the ban on US adoptions, which opposition activists say is being organized by the Kremlin; p 2 (900 words).

2. Nikita Girin article titled "Couldn't shoulder the burden of knowledge" challenges the academic credentials of senator Ruslan Gattarov; p 3 (600 words).

3. Boris Bronshteyn article headlined "Losing touch together?" says that civil activists in the republic of Mariy El are being sent off for psychiatric testing one after the other; p 5 (750 words).

4. Observer Pavel Felgengauer article titled "Future Marshal Shoygu is bringing back all things Soviet" comments on the direction that Sergey Shoygu has been pursuing as the new defence minister; p 6 (500 words).

5. Ivan Maksimov article titled "High-tension region" reports on purported widespread corruption in Samara Region and considers the steps that could be taken to try to overcome it; pp 8-9 (2,400 words)


1. Aleksandr Protsenko article titled "One but burning passion?" examines the Russian government's privatization programme and how this reflects on people's attitudes to the cabinet; pp 1, 2 (900 words).

2. Aleksandr Maksimov article titled "Gerard keeps being handed keys" notes that all the media fuss around new Russian citizen Gerard Depardieu is tiresome; p 1 (250 words).

3. Sergey Frolov article titled "Russia doesn't want to turn 'blue'" summarizes the findings of research about attitudes to LGBT issues in Russian society; (650 words).

Krasnaya Zvezda (weekly)

1. Aleksandr Tikhonov article titled "Logic of renewal" reproduces the full text of Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu's address to the Defense Ministry's collegium session on 27 February; pp 2-4 (4,400 words)

2. Unattributed article titled "February: military aspects" takes stock of the main defense-related events that took place in February 2013; p (1,600 words).

3. Aleksandr Bondarenko article titled "Betting on drones" takes stock of recent reconnaissance group training at the Izhmash plant; p 10 (800 words).

4. Sergey Pechurov article titled "Awaiting sequestration" says the US armed forces are on the verge of major funding cutbacks and considers the implications of this; p 15 (1,600 words).

5. Ilya Baranov article titled "Did France help Mali?" contemplates the impact of the recent French-led military operation in Mali; pp 16-17 (3,000 words).

Tvoy Den

1. Anton Stepanov article titled "Cooked up what they needed" reports on a probe into suspected misspending at the Skolkovo foundation to the tune of over 100m dollars.

Mar. 1, 2013/BBC Monitoring/©BBC 

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