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What the Papers Say, Nov. 21, 2013


1. Andrei Kolesnikov report headlined "President meets parliamentary minorities" gives an account of President Vladimir Putin's meeting with the leaders of non-parliamentary parties, including Yabloko, Civil Platform, RPR-Parnas, Rodina and Right Cause; pp 1-2 (1,964 words).

2. Vladislav Novy article headlined "Rostelecom demobilized" says that the government has postponed the setting-up of a joint venture between the Rostelecom communications company and the Tele2 Russia mobile phone operator due to complaints from the Federal Property Management Agency ; pp 1, 13 (827 words).

3. Alexei Shapovalov article headlined "Reports good" says that the end of the year 2013 may be fortunate for the Russian economy; pp 1, 6 (713 words).

4. Olga Shestopal et al. article headlined "You are on with accounts" says the license of major retail bank Master Bank has been revoked over suspected irregularities; pp 1, 10 (900 words).

5. Ivan Safronov article headlined "Substitute found for Alexander Dombrovsky" says that Roman Vasiyan, an aide to the head of the Federal Service for Defense Contracts may become deputy head of the agency instead of Alexander Dombrovsky dismissed for inaccurate information in his income statement; p 3 (517 words).

6. Viktor Khamrayev article headlined "Russia to be calmed within seven years" says that President Vladimir Putin has approved a public security concept until 2020; p 3 (472 words).

7. Olga Churakova and Alexander Chernykh article headlined "Leave pass given to sailor" says that a St. Petersburg court has released on bail the first Greenpeace activist Ana Paula from Brazil, one of the environmentalists detained over an attempt to board an oil rig in the Pechora Sea in September; p 5 (517 words).

8. Maria Yefimova and Gennady Sysoyev article headlined "Iranian deal may become Syrian" focuses on talks between President Vladimir Putin and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Moscow; p 8 (645 words).

9. Galina Dudina interview with Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics, headlined "'Russian colleagues should better look at themselves'", speaking about his visit to Moscow and Russian-Latvian bilateral relations; p 8 (669 words).

10. Sergei Strokan article headlined "Talks get critical weight" says that a new round of talks between Tehran and the 5+1 group of international mediators on the Iranian nuclear program has begun in Geneva. The nuclear deal with Iran is a matter of time, the article says; p 8 (539 words).

Nezavisimaya Gazeta

1. Alexandra Samarina et al. article headlined "Putin, little doggy and issues of linguistics" looks ahead at Putin's meeting with writers, lecturers, teachers and translators, as a result of which a new writers' union called the Russian literary gathering may be established; pp 1-2 (1,631 words).

2. Ivan Rodin article headlined "Prosecutor's office focuses under Kremlin" says that the State Duma will pass presidential amendments to the Russian constitution, which envisage combining the Supreme and High Arbitration Courts and enabling the president to appoint prosecutors in federal districts, in the final reading on Nov. 22 ; pp 1, 3 (821 words).

3. Yekaterina Trifonova article headlined "Format is not obstacle for Prokhorov" looks at Putin's meeting with the leaders of the non-parliamentary parties; pp 1, 3 (860 words).

4. Anastasia Bashkatova article headlined "Master Bank shakes country" says the revocation of Master Bank's license proves economists' forecast that Russia might soon face a serious banking crisis; pp 1, 4 (1,100 words).

5. Igor Naumov article headlined "Vladimir Putin signs up for greens" says that at a meeting of the Security Council, President Putin has demanded that a strategy for Russia's environmental safety be developed and adopted; p 4 (781 words).

6. Tatyana Ivzhenko and Andrei Shcherbina article headlined "Moscow confronts Yanukovych with new dilemma" says that Russia plans to strengthen a joint missile defense system with Belarus and involve Kazakhstan and Armenia into it. This may influence Ukraine's choice between integration with the EU and accession to the Customs Union; pp 1, 6 (1,202 words).

7. Yury Paniyev article headlined "Syrian sarin to go to bottom" says that the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons will draft a plan for the destruction of Syrian chemical weapons outside Syria by Dec. 17. It is still unknown where the arsenals will be destroyed. The U.S. is considering destroying chemical weapons in international waters; pp 1, 7 (715 words).

8. Andrei Melnikov article headlined "Russian Orthodox Church gives up resistance to evil by force" says that head of the Russian Orthodox Church Patriarch Kirill has denied accusations that the church is exerting pressure on society and said that on the contrary the Church and he himself are suffering from criticism. However, the fact that Putin came to congratulate Kirill on his birthday proves that the church has close relations with the authorities, the article says; p 2 (593 words).

9. Editorial headlined "U.S. President losing to Congress" says that the healthcare reform initiated by U.S. President Barack Obama is barely plodding along and has already damaged Obama's reputation; p 2 (509 words).

10. Gleb Postnov article published in the regular Carte Blanche column headlined "Extremists recall Tatarstan about themselves with rocket salute" looks at the security situation in the republic of Tatarstan, where a terrorist attack has been averted and unknown people tried to fire at a local oil refinery with home-made rockets; p 3 (789 words).

11. Vladimir Skosyrev article headlined "Netanyahu warns Putin about danger of concessions to Iran" says that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has arrived in Moscow for a visit. At a meeting with Putin, Netanyahu unsuccessfully tried to convince Putin that Russia as well as other members of the 5+1 group of international mediators on the Iranian nuclear problems should not ease sanctions against Iran, the article says; p 7 (576 words).

12. Yevgenia Novikova interview with Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics, headlined "Riga wants non-citizens to enter Latvian society", speaking about the agenda of his talks with Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Moscow today; p 7 (1,832 words).


1. Editorial headlined "Crisis of law and order" stands up for reforms in the Russian law enforcement and security agencies as they cannot act without orders from above or signals from people outraged by high-profile crimes; pp 1, 6 (419 words).

2. Tatyana Voronova article headlined "Putin does not help Master Bank" says the license of major retail bank Master Bank has been withdrawn over suspected irregularities; pp 1, 15 (700 words).

3. Svetlana Bocharova article headlined "Opposition for half a day" says that the State Duma has rejected the opposition's amendments to the presidential bill merging the Supreme and High Arbitration Courts and enabling the president to appoint prosecutors in federal district, but for the first time ever, the opposition's initiatives not backed by United Russia have been approved by the majority, though they have not collected two thirds of votes necessary for being passed; p 2 (444 words).

4. Lilia Biryukova article headlined "Politics for beginners" looks at Putin's meeting with the leaders of non-parliamentary opposition parties; p 2 (347 words).

5. Polina Khimshiashvili article headlined "From CIS to Europe" looks ahead at the Eastern Partnership summit in Vilnius on Nov. 28 and 29 , at which Ukraine may sign an agreement on integration with the EU. The article also features a Russian expert's comment on the issue; p 3 (539 words).

6. Margarita Lyutova and Anastasia Korzhova article headlined "Deficit of friendship" says that the Russian and Ukrainian prime ministers have discussed Ukraine's plans to integrate with the EU. The article features Russian experts' comments on advantages and disadvantages of the move for Ukraine; p 5 (355 words).

7. Mikhail Serov article headlined "Deputies do not lend an ear to Rosneft and LUKoil" says that the State Duma will likely pass a bill liberalizing gas exports and thus breaking up Gazprom's monopoly in the final reading on Nov. 22 ; p 12 (542 words).

8. Editorial headlined "Party pyramid" looks at the Russian political landscape and says that although the establishment of new political parties has been facilitated, few parties are permitted to take an active part in the Russian political life; p 6 (292 words).

9. Ramazan Alpaut article headlined "New policy: How to find approach to Caucasus" comments on an article called "How to integrate Caucasus into Russia", published by economic expert Yevgeny Gontmakher on Nov. 1 in Vedomosti. The Russian authorities' view on the Caucasus still remains superficial, the author says; p 6 (777 words).


1. Alena Sivkova article headlined "They offer to execute migrant criminals" says that the State Duma lawmaker from the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia, Roman Khudyakov, has drafted a bill, under which the moratorium on death sentence will be lifted for illegal migrants who have committed grave and gravest crimes in Russia; pp 1, 3 (704 words).

2. German Petelin and Maria Kiseleva article headlined "'Boeing flew up like rocket and then dropped like stone'" says that experts from the Interstate Aviation Committee have concluded that a pilot's error was the most probable cause of the Nov. 17 crash in the republic of Tatarstan. However, experienced pilots say that part of the fault is attached to the ground services; pp 1, 3 (905 words).

3. Lyudmila Podobedova article headlined "Ukraine hopes to get payment by instalments from Gazprom" says that Ukraine wants the Russian gas giant Gazprom to permit it to pay for gas by instalments. In total, Ukraine owes Gazprom $1.3 billion ; pp 1, 3 (337 words).

4. Ksenia Dementyeva and Dmitry Yevstifeyev article headlined "Master Bank causes record damage to Deposit Insurance Agency" looks at the withdrawal of the Moscow-based Master Bank's license; pp 1, 4 (700 words).

5. Sergei Podosenov article headlined "A Just Russia members decide to trust independent experts" says that the A Just Russia party has decided to set up an expert's council at the party group in the parliament, which will assess party members' legislative initiatives; p 2 (440 words).

5. Yegor Sozayev-Guryev article headlined "Vladimir Putin holds briefing for small parties" gives an account of President Putin's meeting with the leaders of non-parliamentary parties; p 2 (1,152 words).

6. Petr Kozlov article headlined "Commonwealth of Independent States to be judged in heaven" reports on a one-day summit of the CIS member-states at the level of prime ministers in St. Petersburg; p 2 (787 words).

7. Yelizaveta Mayetnaya and German Petelin article headlined "Defendant in Oboronservis case may not live until trial" says that Yulia Rotanova, a defendant in the Oboronservis case who has been diagnosed as having breast cancer in a pre-trial detention centre, has complained to the European Court of Human Rights as a judge has refused to change a measure of restraint for her; p 5 (956 words).

8. Boris Mezhuyev and Igor Yavlyansky article headlined "Approach to Egypt splits Barack Obama's administration" says that a serious conflict has arisen in the foreign policy team of U.S. President Barack Obama's administration over the U.S. policy on Egypt. The article features a Russian expert's comment on the issue; p 7 (608 words).

9. Boris Mezhuyev article headlined "Depraved by dollars" contemplates liberalism in Russia; p 9 (1,057 words).

10. Yaroslav Timofeyev interview with Vladimir Tolstoy, presidential aide for culture, headlined "'Not lack of ideology, but lack of set of ideas daunts'", speaking about the Russian literary gathering to be held today in Moscow; p 10 (1,385 words).

Rossiiskaya Gazeta

1. Yulia Krivoshapko interview with the head of the Federal Tax Service, Mikhail Mishustin, headlined "All to gather", who speaks about tax collection and tax crimes in Russia; pp 1, 4 (3,310 words).

2. Roman Markelov article headlined "Block" says that a list of criteria to assess information posted on websites as banned from being spread has been developed in Russia; pp 1, 6 (487 words).

3. Vladimir Kuzmin article headlined "Expecting Kiev" looks at the CIS summit at the level of prime ministers in St. Petersburg. Ukraine was warned that economic sanctions against it would be probable if it signed an agreement on integration with the EU, the article says; p 2 (582 words).

4. Vitaly Petrov article headlined "Reform stimulus" says that Labor Minister Maxim Topilin has delivered a report to the State Duma. Topilin said that the state had managed to liquidate poverty among pensioners; p 3 (831 words).

5. Yury Gavrilov article headlined "Choice given to soldier" says that the Defense Ministry has drafted amendments to the law on military service, which envisage enabling future servicemen to choose between conscription service and contract-based service; p 7 (506 words).

6. Yevgeny Shestakov article headlined "Do they show carrot?" says that a new round of talks between Iran and the 5+1 group of international mediators may end in a triumphal success or a total fiasco; p 8 (561 words).

7. Mikhail Gusman interview with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, headlined "To overtake and surpass Germans", who speaks about his forthcoming visit to Russia and Russian Turkish relations; p 11 (2,971 words).

Rossiiskaya Gazeta (weekly)

1. Vladislav Vorobyev article headlined "Sol note" sums up Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov's interview to Rossiiskaya Gazeta and highlights the key issues he touched upon when speaking to journalists; p 4 (1,000 words).

2. Constitutional Court Chairman Valery Zorkin article headlined "Russia's constitutional vector" features Zorkin's comments on the recent calls for amending the Russian constitution; p 8 (1,100 words).

Moskovsky Komsomolets

1. Kirill Saltykov and Maxim Grigoryev interview headlined "Air crash could have been avoided" with an expert from the Interstate Aviation Committee, which is conducting a probe into the Nov. 17 air crash in the republic of Tatarstan, which claimed the lives of 50 people, who says that a pilot's error is the cause of the air crash as a preliminary; pp 1, 3 (920 words).

2. Lina Panchenko article headlined "Yevgenia Vasilyeva to Vladimir Markin: stop threatening" says that the former head of the Defense Ministry's property relations department, Yevgenia Vasilyeva, charged with fraud, has written a letter in response to Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin's interview given to Izvestia on Nov. 20, in which he denied that pressure had been exerted on Vasilyeva; pp 1-2 (454 words).

3. Irina Badmayeva article headlined "Even Putin's brother does not save Master Bank" looks at the withdrawal of the Moscow-based Master Bank's license; pp 1, 3 (500 words).

4. Mikhail Zubov interview headlined "Putin being agitated for 'overpopulated flats'" with human rights activist Yevgeny Bobrov, a member of the president's human rights council, speaking about the council's initiatives to improve Russia's migration policy; p 2 (777 words).

5. Marina Ozerova article headlined "Careful exercise with constitution" says that the State Duma has passed in the second reading presidential amendments to the constitution, concerning the merger of arbitration courts and the appointment of prosecutors. The State Duma was careful and cautious about Putin's brainchild, but not the constitution, the article says; p 2 (719 words).

6. The newspaper publishes an open letter to President Vladimir Putin written by human rights activists, who ask the president to grant amnesty to the defendants in the so-called Bolotnaya case on the May 6, 2012, riots on Moscow's Bolotnaya square on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the Russian constitution; p 3 (610 words).

7. Matvey Ganapolsky article headlined "Serdyukov and Vasilyeva: heroes of labor" says that the anti-corruption campaign being held in Russia is in word rather than in fact and does not affect high-ranking officials close to Putin given that former Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov and former head of the Defense Ministry's property relations department, Yevgenia Vasilyeva, charged with fraud, have gotten new jobs; p 3 (974 words).

8. Natalya Rozhkova article headlined "Fate of May 6 convicts to be determined before Olympics" says that human rights activists have asked Putin to grant amnesty to the defendants in the so-called Bolotnaya case on the May 6 riots on Moscow's Bolotnaya square on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the Russian constitution. The European Court of Human Rights has made the Bolotnaya case a priority. There are talks behind the scene that the defendants will be released before the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi in order not to ruin Russia's reputation, the article says; p 3 (526 words).

9. Natalya Vedeneyeva article headlined "Ostapenko wants to lift 100 tons" contemplates the new head of the Federal Space Agency Oleg Ostapenko's recent initiatives, one of which is to produce a hundred-ton carrier rocket; p 10 (621 words).

10. Natalya Vedeneyeva interview with prominent Russian cosmonaut and test pilot Igor Volk, who performed the first flight on the Buran spacecraft, headlined "Tamer of Buran", who shares his views of the development of the Russian space industry; p 10 (1,219 words).

11. Natalya Dardykina article headlined "Putin casts look at literature" says that a number of prominent writers, including Eduard Limonov and Boris Akunin, who have been invited to the Nov. 21 meeting with Putin, have refused to come for political reasons. The article features writers' comments on the issue; p 11 (671 words).

RBK Daily

1. Tatyana Aleshkina report "Master and Elvira" says that the Central Bank has revoked the license of Master Bank and its bankruptcy may become the biggest insured accident. After Elvira Nabiullina had become head of the Bank of Russia, 17 banks ceased to exist, the article says; pp 1, 6 (650 words).

2. Alexander Litoy report "Prolonged answer for environment" says that the government has submitted a bill to the State Duma raising terms of limitation by six times for administrative violations in the sphere of environment; p 2 (550 words).

3. Alexander Litoy report "Society to be secured by 2020" says that President Vladimir Putin has approved a concept of public security. According to the document, the main threats to public security are terrorism, extremism, drug abuse and drug trafficking, as well as corruption and illegal migration. Article features experts' comments; p 2 (400 words).

4. Inga Vorobyeva report "'There are no conflicts only at cemetery'" looks at Putin's meeting with leaders of non-parliamentary parties; p 3 (750 words).

5. Sergei Starikov interview with Nikolay Kolesov, head of Radio-electronic Technologies Concern, who speaks about ways to make defense industry companies attractive to investors; p 7 (2,700 words).

6. Katerina Kitayeva report "Twenty thousand paid subscribers needed" says that Yevgenia Albats, editor in chief of the opposition weekly magazine The New Times, is raising money for the magazine. In an open letter she has promised that the magazine will not have owners as from 2014, article says; p 9 (600 words).

Noviye Izvestia

1. Sergei Putilov article headlined "Debt of motherland" says that Russia's external debt amounted to $55.900 billion as of Nov. 1, which is 10 percent larger than at the beginning of the year; p 1 (581 words).

2. Margarita Alekhina article headlined "Museum case" says that a Yekaterinburg court has refused to recognize a local non-commercial organization, which is part of the memorial human rights center, as a foreign agent; pp 1, 5 (509 words).

3. Artem Lunkov article headlined "Olympic concern" says that the leader of the Rodina party, Alexei Zhuravlev, has complained to the Roskomnadzor media watchdog about a paint-by-number book, which will be disseminated during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. According to Zhuravlev, the book is advocating same-sex relations; p 2 (399 words).

4. Yekaterina Dyatlovskaya report "Heard on top" looks at Putin's meeting with leaders of non-parliamentary parties; p 2 (500 words).

5. Yana Sergeieva report "Either Tymoshenko, or Europe" looks at prospects of the Ukraine-EU association agreement and features analysts' comments; p 2 (450 words).

6. Elya Grigoryeva report "Plastic card game is over" says that revoking the license of Master Bank has resulted in a nightmare for its depositors; p 3 (600 words).

Komsomolskaya Pravda

1. Darya Tokareva report "Pilot tried to land aircraft with jammed altitude control system" looks at possible causes of an airliner crash in Tatarstan; pp 1, 8 (750 words).

2. Sergei Vladimirov report "Why Kudrin refused to take part in Poyedinok" says that former Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin has refused to take part in the "Poyedinok" ("Duel") program on Rossia 1 television channel with the chairman of the State Duma Budget and Tax Committee, Andrei Makarov; p 5 (600 words).

3. Alexander Rogoza report looks at the problem of migration in Russia and says that migrants are transforming Moscow to their liking, opening night clubs, outpatient clinics and even radio stations; p 14 (2,200 words).


1. Alexander Dmitriyev report "Dad, I will not do this again!" says that the Prosecutor-General's Office no longer has any serious complaints against the Skolkovo Foundation; p 2 (450 words).

Krasnaya Zvezda

1. Brief unattributed report "Television channel Zvezda presents" says that the channel begins to broadcast a new 12-episode documentary "Universal soldier" on Nov. 25 ; p 1 (100 words).

2. Viktor Ruchkin report "Chemical weapons may be destroyed in sea" comments on the plans of the UN and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to dispose of Syria's chemical weapons in the ocean; p 3 (550 words).

3. Anna Polyakova report "In what arteries withdrawal flows" comments on the preliminary agreement between Afghanistan and the U.S.on the presence of American troops in Afghanistan; p 3 (1,200 words).


1. Yelena Larina report "Cyber weapons are great equalizers" looks at the problem of cyber weapons development; pp 1, 3 (1,000 words).

Tvoi Den

1. Anton Stepanov report "Experts in lies" says that the Central Bank has revoked the license of Master Bank for illegal conversion into cash hundreds of millions of rubles; p 2 (350 words).

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