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News From Russia: What You Missed Over the Weekend

Putin congratulated Muslims on Eid al-Fitr. Alexei Namestnikov / Press Office of the Russian Council of Muftis / TASS

Remote vote

President Vladimir Putin has signed a law allowing Russians to vote by mail or online in a move supporters say will prevent the spread of the coronavirus and opponents claim will open the door to manipulation.

It is not yet clear whether remote voting will extend to a vote on Putin’s constitutional amendments that would allow him to stay in power through 2036. Russian news outlets report that the public vote could take place on June 24.

Pandemic feast

Putin congratulated Muslims across Russia on the Eid al-Fitr holiday, a feast marking the end of the month-long fast of Ramadan, calling for charitable donations “under current conditions of a spreading dangerous disease.”

Authorities in Moscow and Russia’s Muslim-majority regions have canceled prayer gatherings and ordereded mosques to remain closed to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

Moscow shootout

Two people were injured in a broad-daylight shootout that eyewitnesses caught on video in a southern Moscow residential neighborhood.

At least three people have reportedly been detained after the incident that Russian media linked to a financial dispute within a funeral home.

Hostage situation

Police have detained a man who threatened to blow up a bank on a main Moscow thoroughfare.

Authorities did not find explosives on the suspect, who was carrying a bag from a food delivery service and made unspecified demands. Alfa Bank said its employees escaped through an emergency exit, while the suspect’s only hostage streamed his capture live on social media.

										 					Mikhail Tereschenko / TASS
Mikhail Tereschenko / TASS

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