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What the Papers Say, Mar. 22, 2013


1. Georgiy Dvali and Gennadiy Sysoyev article headlined "Georgia no longer presidential" says that yesterday the Georgian parliament stripped President Mikheil Saakashvili of key powers thus putting an end to his era; pp 1, 7 (693 words).

2. Sergey Sobolev article headlined "Aleksandr Ponomarenko to move Olimp to Sheremetyevo" says that former co-owner of the Novorossiysk Sea Trade Port Aleksandr Ponomarenko is not going to give up his advertising business: his people will deal with advertising in terminal D of Sheremetyevo airport; pp 1, 9 (626 words).

3. Svetlana Dementyeva and Aleksandra Bayazitova article headlined "Central Bank stepping up control" says that the government has approved amendments to legislation which will drastically expand the Central Bank's powers in banking supervision; pp 1,10 (1,067 words).

4. Dmitriy Butrin article headlined "Cyprus confirming worst resolution" looks at a new plan aimed to resolve the Cypriot crisis; pp 1,6 (874 words).

5. Sofya Samokhina article headlined "What is of some use for Sergey Naryshkin, is impossible for Nikolay Kovalev" says that State Duma speaker Sergey Naryshkin stated that cooperation with US senator Benjamin Cardin in the search for undeclared property of Russian officials in the USA could be of some use whereas head of the State Duma commission for control over deputies' income and property said that the interaction was impossible as the senator was the one behind the Magnitskiy Act; p 2 (602 words).

6. Taisiya Bekbulatova article headlined "Rulings of foreign courts being sentenced to confiscation" says that One Russia deputies have tabled a bill aimed to protect Russians against wrongful rulings of foreign courts; p 2 (543 words).

7. Maksim Ivanov and Irina Nagornykh article headlined "Small parties recommended to dare" says that consultations with the representatives of non-parliamentary parties were held in the Kremlin yesterday; p 2 (680 words).

8. Grigoriy Tumanov article headlined "Memorial checked for show" says that after yesterday's check of the Memorial fund, human rights activists plan to sue the NTV channel for defamation. In its TV report a journalist said that the NGO's staff hide incomes from prosecutors; p 3 (542 words).

9. Yekaterina Yeremenko interview with acting governor of Transbaykal Territory Konstantin Ilkovskiy headlined "'There is no other territory like this'" where he speaks about his region, his performance in the post and the upcoming gubernatorial election; p 4 (2,012 words).

10. Igor Lesovskikh article headlined "Three million for stopping protests" says that the Sverdlovsk Region court has sentenced to three years in prison a Yekaterinburg city duma deputy, the leader of the regional branch of the Yabloko party, Maksim Petlin, who was found guilty of extorting R3m from a local development company for stopping protests against the construction of a shopping centre; p 5 (584 words).

11. Petr Netreba article headlined "We have our own islands" says that Prime Minister Dmitriy Medvedev is considering the setting up of offshore zones in the Russian Far East; p 6 (795 words).

12. Kirill Belyaninov article headlined "They want Magnitskiy Act to be tough" says that the masterminds behind the Magnitskiy Act have demanded that the US administration should expand the black list of Russian officials subject to sanctions; p 7 (649 words).

13. Sergey Strokan article headlined "Barack Obama settles differences with Israeli premier" looks at US President Barack Obama's visits to Israel and Palestinian Territories. The only outcome of the trip is the settlement of differences with the Israeli prime minister; p 7 (392 words).

14. Olga Kuznetsova article headlined "Kurds get retreat plan" says that imprisoned PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan has called on his nation to stop the conflict with the Turks and withdraw all armed troops from Turkey; p 7 (417 words).

15. Kirill Melnikov and Anna Solodovnikova article headlined "Rosneft closes in London" says that Rosneft has officially closed the deal to purchase TNK-BP; p 9 (1,050 words).

Nezavisimaya Gazeta

1. Aleksey Gorbachev and Svetlana Gavrilina article headlined "Human rights activists visited with search" says that prosecutors are checking NGOs all across Russia; pp 1, 3 (900 words).

2. Aleksandra Samarina article headlined "Two vectors in Yukos case" looks at the Moscow City Court's ruling to dismiss a supervisory appeal from the Russian human rights ombudsman, Vladimir Lukin, against a penalty charge of R17bn (over 540m dollars) from former Yukos owners Mikhail Khodorkovskiy and Platon Lebedev; pp 1, 3 (800 words).

3. Tatyana Ivzhenko article headlined "Kiev warned last time" looks ahead at today's visit of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych to Poland. Kiev is wary it will not be able to fulfil all the EU's requirements for the agreement on integration and fears the plans may be disrupted by Russia and the Ukrainian opposition; pp 1, 7 (920 words).

4. Vladimir Skosyrev article headlined "China to become main buyer of Russian oil" says that Chinese new leader Xi Jinping's visit to Moscow may be marked by a landmark deal envisaging the increase in oil supplies to China; pp 1, 8 (500 words).

5. Viktoriya Panfilova article headlined "Railway for Rahmon" says that the signing of a memorandum on the construction of the Tajikistan-Afghanistan-Turkmenistan railway may turn out to be President Emomali Rahmon's pre-election move; pp 1, 7 (750 words).

6. Editorial headlined "Last effort of Shoygu's quartering officers" says that the provision of all servicemen with housing will become a serious test for Defence Minister Sergey Shoygu and looks at factors hampering the resolution of the problem; p 2 (600 words).

7. Andrey Vaganov article headlined "Three million for playing super strings" says that Russian physician working at Princeton University has got the Fundamental Physics Prize established by a Russian businessman, one of the founders of the Group, Yuriy Milner; p 2 (600 words).

8. Ivan Rodin article headlined "Blow at Ponomarev hits Skolkovo" says that the State Duma commission that monitors deputies' income and property declarations has decided to check the earnings of MP Ilya Ponomarev, A Just Russia, and send an inquiry to the Prosecutor-General's Office to check his work in 2011 for the Skolkovo Foundation; p 3 (700 words).

9. Vladislav Maltsev article headlined "Will Russia have Muslim president?" says that the interview of senior Muslim cleric Damir Mukhetdinov to the Voice of Russia radio station in which he wondered if a Muslim could become president of Russia in 2050 has stirred up the Islamic community; p 3 (850 words).

10. Mikhail Sergeyev article headlined "Medvedev moving Cyprus to Kurils" says that Prime Minister Dmitriy Medvedev has slammed the inability to stop the degradation of the Far East and suggested that the idea of setting up an offshore zone in Sakhalin or the Kurils be considered; p 4 (700 words).

11. Sergey Kulikov article headlined "New taxes flop" says that the budget lost at least R13.5bn because of the disappearance of over 300,000 sole traders from December 2012 to March 2013 due to the growth of insurance payments for small business; p 4 (700 words).

12. Anastasiya Bashkatova article headlined "Kremlin takes useful break" says that Moscow is taking its time to offer new aid to Cyprus in an attempt to exert pressure on the EU; pp 1, 4 (1,100 words).

13. Sergey Turanov article provides the list of Russia's best lobbyists for February 2013; p 5 (800 words).

14. Grigoriy Mikhaylov article headlined "Atambayev sums up outcomes of revolutions" looks at the situation in Kyrgyzstan; p 7 (550 words).

15. Artur Blinov article headlined "Drone war tires intelligence service" says that the CIA will hand over some of its drones to the Pentagon; p 8 (500 words).

16. Yuriy Paniyev article headlined "BRICS leaders to meet in Africa" looks ahead at the BRICS summit to be held in South Africa next week; p 8 (800 words).


1. Dmitriy Kazmin, Yevgeniya Pismennaya article "Citizen, open up" says the tax authorities in Russia will get access to information on cashflows on private individuals' bank accounts; pp 1, 5 (650 words).

2. Editorial headlined "Nationalization of offshores" comments on Prime Minister Dmitriy Medvedev's idea to set up Russia's own offshore zones in the Far East; pp 1, 6 (453 words).

3. Mariya Zheleznova and Aleksey Nikolskiy article headlined "Agents near Kremlin" says that the prosecutor's office and the tax service are conducting checks of the oldest NGO in Russia, Memorial; p 2 (491 words).

4. Editorial headlined "Paper descent" looks at the recent wave of checks of NGOs in Russia and says that they look like revenge on human rights activists for challenging the law on 'foreign agents' in the European Court of Human Rights; p 6 (300 words).

5. Anastasiya Kornya and Liliya Biryukova article headlined "Judicial sovereignty" says that One Russia deputies have tabled a bill suggesting that foreign courts' rulings should be recognized wrongful if they infringe on the competence of Russian courts; p 3 (539 words).

6. Yekaterina Kravchenko article headlined "Desperate move" says that Cyprus has given up the idea of imposing a tax on bank deposits and is going to set up a special fund to save its banking system from bankruptcy; p 5 (391 words).

7. Martin Wolf article headlined "Globalist: Big problems of small island" criticizes the EU's bailout plan for Cyprus and ponders over other options; p 7 (1,005 words).

8. Irina Kezik article headlined "Rosneft's Chinese wallet" looks ahead at the visit of Chinese leader Xi Jinping to Moscow where the sides will discuss increasing oil supplies to China; p 13 (415 words).

9. Yelena Khodyakova article headlined "Package disturbs Gazprom" says that the Russian gas monopoly has asked the EU to revise the application of the Third Energy Package; p 13 (728 words).

10. Olga Kuvshinova article headlined "Cyprus to make Russia collapse" says that the escalation of the Cypriot crisis may result in recession in Russia as it is already on the verge of long-term stagnation; p 4 (787 words).

11. Yekaterina Sobol article headlined "Director without inquiry" says that Aeroflot's board of directors has adopted a resolution envisaging that if a member of the board is willing to get some information from the airline's management, they should send a written inquiry to the board, which may refuse to provide the documents. The move has resulted from confrontation between blogger Aleksey Navalnyy, who is also a member of the board, and the rest of the directors; p 10 (518 words).

12. Yevgeniya Pismennaya and Maksim Tovkaylo article headlined "Offshores may appear in Russia" provides economists' and political analysts' comments on Prime Minister Dmitriy Medvedev's idea to set up offshore zones in Russia's Far East; p 4 (683 words).

13. Lyudmila Koval article headlined "Farther from island" says that the situation in Cyprus has undermined trust in the banking system and ponders over ways to minimize risks; p 8 (1,048 words).

14. Anton Trifonov and Galina Kamneva article headlined "German Gref counts money laundering firms" says that Sberbank president German Gref has stated that at least 20 per cent of Russian banks conduct illegal operations; p 11 (588 words).

Rossiiskaya Gazeta

1. Vladislav Vorobyev article headlined "Too many chemicals" says that the USA are waiting for a pretext to implement the Libyan scenario in Syria; pp 1, 8 (500 words).

2. Tatyana Zykova article headlined "From cabbage to space" says that President Vladimir Putin has signed the concept of Russia's long-term participation in BRICS; p 2 (200 words).

3. Kira Latukhina article headlined "Moscow is already Europe" looks at President Vladimir Putin's meeting with the chairman of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso; p 2 (600 words).

4. Vladimir Kuzmin article headlined "Because of distrust" says that Russia and the EU are seeking ways of further cooperation; p 3 (650 words).

5. Viktor Feshchenko article headlined "Time flowing away from Cyprus" says that Cyprus may announce a partial default even if the salvation for its banking system is found; p 6 (1,000 words).

6. Yevgeniy Shestakov article headlined "Eye shape does not suit" says that staff of Chinese origin working for NASA have been banned access to its electronic database; p 8 (550 words).

7. Yelena Yakovleva article headlined "Gdov-orphan" focuses on the story of Yuliya Kuzmina, biological mother of Maksim Kuzmin, who was adopted by an American couple and died in the USA in January 2013; pp 1, 9 (3,250 words).


1. German Petelin article headlined "Interior Ministry gives up on Nurgaliyev's inheritance" says that the Interior Ministry has been checking all the state purchases planned and approved by former Interior Minister Rashid Nurgaliyev; pp 1, 4 (746 words).

2. Petr Kozlov and Anastasiya Kashevarova article headlined "All top officials from presidential administration leave One Russia" says that all Kremlin officials have suspended their membership in the One Russia party; pp 1-2 (408 words).

3. Aleksandr Yunashev article headlined "Head of European Commission hints at visa-free travel with Russia" looks at Russian President Putin's meeting with the chairman of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso; p 2 (458 words).

4. Mariya Gorkovskaya and Mikhail Vignanskiy article headlined "Vanuatu keeps playing with Abkhazia's recognition" looks at reports in Georgian mass media outlets stating that Vanuatu has withdrawn its recognition of Abkhazia; p 7 (627 words).

5. Valeriy Vaisberg article headlined "Good pupils of bad teacher" draws parallels between the current crisis in Cyprus and similar problems in Iceland and Latvia; p 8 (656 words).

Moskovsky Komsomolets

1. Mikhail Zubov article headlined "Lie detector tells Gudkov he is not spy" comments on a lie detector test passed by A Just Russia MP Dmitriy Gudkov suspected by some Russian deputies of betraying national interests during his trip to the USA; pp 1-2 (350 words).

2. Aleksandr Minkin article headlined "Political, pardon, God" analyses reasons behind the conflict between One Russia MPs and the Moskovskiy Komsomolets newspaper; pp 1, 5 (700 words).

3. Tatyana Zamakhina article headlined "PM wants to create 'his own' offshore zone instead of Cyprus" features experts' comments on Dmitriy Medvedev's proposal to set up an offshore zone in Sakhalin; pp 1-2 (700 words).

4. Mikhail Rostovskiy article headlined "Medvedev as theorist and empiricist of Russian half-democracy" comments on the development and prospects of Russian democracy; pp 1-2 (550 words).

5. Viktoriya Prikhodko article headlined "Barroso justifies with help from Leo Tolstoy" says that there is a crisis of confidence between Russia and the EU; p 2 (320 words).

6. Nikolay Vardul article headlined "Russian state structures stuck on island" looks into the situation with Russian companies' assets being blocked in Cyprus and says the Cypriot crisis concerns not only the island itself but Russia as well; p 2 (400 words).

7. Marina Ozerova article headlined "For whom Ponomarev tolls" says that a State Duma commission is expected to check A Just Russia MP Ilya Ponomarev's cooperation with Skolkovo fund, which has paid him R7m; p 3 (450 words).

8. Anastasiya Rodionova interview with lawyers representing the head of the opposition Left Front movement, Sergey Udaltsov, speaking on their client's house arrest and prospects of his criminal case; pp 1, 4 (1,350 words)

RBK Daily

1. Natalya Starostina report "Kudrin to Sberbank" says former Finance Minister Aleksey Kudrin may join the board of trustees of Russia's biggest retail bank, Sberbank; pp 1, 7 (300 words).

2. Ivan Petrov, Svetlana Makunina article "High-profile cases to go on-line" says the Russian Investigations Committee has commission a R5m redesign of its website; pp 1-2 (550 words).

3. Anastasiya Litvinova article "Cyprus of one's own" looks at Prime Minister Medvedev's proposal to set up offshore zones in the Russian Far East and initial reactions to it; p 3 (700 words).

Novaya Gazeta

1. Andrey Kolesnikov report "Stepashin considered to be pensioner" says the long-serving head of the Russian Audit Chamber, Sergey Stepashin, may be replaced in the autumn; p 1 (150 words).

2. Aleksey Tarasov report "Revolt in bear's lair has been suppressed" looks at controversy in the One Russia party branch in Krasnoyarsk Territory's Abakanskiy District where 60 party quit the party; p 4 (600 words).

Krasnaya Zvezda

1. Oleg Pochinyuk interview with the acting head of the Marshal Timoshenko Military Academy of the Radiation, Chemical and Biological Defence Troops, Col Aleksey Bakin, headlined "In hospitable Kostroma"; p 10 (1,100 words).

2. Tatyana Mezhanova interview with the head of the North Caucasus District command of the Internal Troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Lt-Gen Yevgeniy Vnukov; p 14 (1,000 words).


1. Sergey Rusev article "Presentiment of big kick" offers a critical comment on Deputy Prime Minister Arkadiy Dvorkovich's recent statement that most cabinet members were opposed to the adoption of the Dima Yakovlev law, suggesting that Dvorkovich may soon lose his post; p 1 (350 words).

Komsomolskaya Pravda

1. Vladimir Vorsobin interview with Federation Council speaker Valentina Matviyenko headlined "Colour of suit is conscious choice in diplomacy" sums up her recent visit to the Council of Europe, Russia's relations with the EU over the Cyprus crisis and a couple of domestic policy issues; p 3 (390 words).

2. Aleksandr Boyko report "Company that dressed Interior Ministry in 'Chinese armour' swindled Indian Defence Ministry" looks at the Russian Interior Ministry's contract with Russian closed joint-stock company Zashchita (Rus: protection) for supply of helmets and bullet-proof vests that has gone sour; p 7 (550 words).

3. Oleg Potapov article "Rosneft has completed 'deal of the century'" looks at the closure of the deal whereby state company Rosneft bought 100 per cent in TNK-BP; p 10 (900 words).

4. Sergey Vasilyev wide-ranging interview with businessman Konstantin Malofeyev; pp 12-13 (2,100 words).

Mar. 22, 2013/BBC Monitoring/©BBC 

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