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What the Papers Say, Jan. 30, 2013

Igor Tabakov


1. Anton Prusakov et al. report headlined "Alcohol attempt" comments on the search at the office of Kirov Region governor Nikita Belykh as part of the probe into the sale of a stake belonging to the regional government in the Urzhum distillery. The official denies allegations brought against him and expresses readiness to cooperate with the investigation; pp 1, 3 (900 words).

2. Ivan Safronov article headlined "Defense Ministry counts from one to 10" says that a new structure of the Defense Ministry has been formed and outlines the tasks that deputy ministers will implement; pp 1-2 (1,600 words).

3. Grigory Tumanov article headlined "NGOs' losses" says the Russian Economic Development Ministry has calculated that Russian NGOs will lose R19bn (around 633m dollars) in 2013 due to changes in the legislation regulating their work. The Russian authorities plan to allocate R3bn to make up for some of the losses; pp 1, 4 (800 words).

4. Alexander Konstantinov et al. report headlined "Kazakhstan to replace Russia with China" says Kazakhstan's decision to suspend Russian fuel export may trigger a new scandal in the two countries' relations. Astana hopes to develop its own refineries with the help of China; pp 1, 9 (850 words).

5. Maxim Ivanov article headlined "Small parties assert themselves by proposals" reports on State Duma speaker Sergei Naryshkin's meeting with representatives of non-parliamentary parties who have asked to be allowed to form electoral blocs; p 2 (700 words).

6. Irina Nagornykh article headlined "National policy taken under double control" outlines the task that former Dagestan head Magomedsalam Magomedov will perform in the Russian presidential administration. He will be in charge of ethnic relations and domestic policy; p 3 (400 words).

7. Ilya Shepelin et al. report headlined "American NGOs retreat" says the US NGOs National Democratic Institute and International Republic Institute have closed their offices in Russia and brought their Russian staff, who are afraid of persecution, to the USA; p 4 (1,000 words).

8. Maxim Ivanov article headlined "No worse than foreign agents" says that the Russian Justice Ministry has drafted a new tougher law to control the work of Russian NGOs that will face unscheduled inspections by law-enforcement agencies; p 4 (400 words).

9. Nikolai Sergeyev article headlined "Interior Ministry torn into quotes" says the Russian Interior Ministry has been found the most open among the country's law-enforcement agencies. Experts attribute the trend to the work of new Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev; p 5 (400 words).

10. Oleg Rubnikovich report "Yekaterina Smetanova left without colonels" says that those involved in the Defense Ministry's Voyentorg fraud case will be prosecuted separately; p 5 (800 words).

11. Pavel Tarasenko article headlined "USA to grow due to migrants" says US President Barack Obama has unveiled a plan to help 11 million illegal migrants get legalized in the country. Republicans are expected to back the reform; p 6 (850 words).

12. Sergei Strokan article headlined "Bomb planted under Iranian atom" says that disruption of the international talks on the Iranian nuclear problem has coincided with the explosion at a nuclear facility in Iran. Tehran denies the information; meanwhile, Israeli sources confirm the accident; p 6 (600 words).

13. Alexander Reutov article headlined "Egyptian army warns country about disintegration" says experts do not rule out the possibility of the military taking power in the country as the defense minister has officially warned against disintegration of the country; p 6 (550 words).

14. Pavel Tarasenko brief report says that the UK is ready to send 240 servicemen to West Africa; p 6 (100 words)

Nezavisimaya Gazeta

1. Alexandra Samarina article headlined "One Russia in search for liberalism" says that a liberal platform has been set up within One Russia. Experts doubt the success of the move; pp 1, 3 (1,002 words).

2. Anastasia Bashkatova article headlined "Domestic economy on autopilot" says that despite pessimistic forecast by economic experts, 22 per cent of Russians expect their salaries to rise in 2013; pp 1, 4 (1,201 words).

3. Ivan Rodin article headlined "Sergei Naryshkin sets bloc" says that the State Duma cannot come to agreement over a new bill on parliamentary elections. It is still unclear whether electoral blocs will be allowed to be set up or not; pp 1, 3 (879 words).

4. Vladimir Mukhin article headlined "Karabakh air defense roulette" says that Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu has visited Armenia amid threats by Azerbaijan to use Russian-made air defense systems to shoot down the aircraft that enter the country's airspace; pp 1-2 (752 words).

5. Darya Tsilyurik article headlined "Obama promises amnesty to millions of illegal migrants" reports on the fight between Democrats and Republicans over the immigration issue in the USA, as President Barack Obama has unveiled his plan to help illegal migrants legalize; pp 1, 7 (643 words).

6. Alexander Malyshev article headlined "Chelyabinsk residents reminded about repression of 1937" says the Russian Public Chamber is to carry out a probe into searches carried out by the Chelyabinsk Region law-enforcement agencies at the local government office and NGOs; pp 1, 5 (687 words).

7. Editorial headlined "Temporary blocking due to situation" welcomes the Russian government's decision to recall the controversial bill on the offense of religious feelings and notes that common sense does not always take the upper hand in Russia: p 2 (504 words).

8. Ilgar Velizadze article headlined "Ahmadinezhad leaves" looks at the political situation in Iran ahead of the presidential election to be held in summer; p 3 (780 words).

9. Nikolai Surkov article headlined "Jihadists flee, but war for Mali just begins" says that experts believe that jihadists will resort to terrorist attacks in the north of Mali, as the French-led troops have defeated them; p 7 (561 words).

10. Oleg Vladykin report "Underside of military reform" looks at the military reform in Russia; p 10 (3,100 words).


1. Svetlana Subbotina article headlined "Heads of state companies and judges to be restricted in right to have property abroad" says the State Duma has amended the bill on restrictions on foreign assets not to allow not only officials, but also heads of state-controlled companies and judges to have property abroad; pp 1-2 (422 words).

2. Mikhail Markelov and Andrey Gridasov article headlined "Investigations Committee asks State Duma to hand out One Russia MP Bulavinov" says the Investigations Committee wants to strip One Russia MP and former Nizhny Novgorod mayor Vadim Bulavinov of his deputy immunity to prosecute him over abuse of office; pp 1, 4 (593 words).

3. Alexander Yunashev article headlined "Andrei Vorobyev promises to make Moscow Region leader among regions" says acting Moscow Region governor Andrei Vorobyev has unveiled his development plan, which most experts see as an election campaign; p 3 (785 words).

4. Alexei Mikhaylov and Dmitry Balburov article headlined "Russian Air Force left without training fighters" says the Russian Air Force command is raising the alarm as the jets used to train pilots are too worn-out and old; p 5 (571 words).

5. Ivan Cheberko report "Roskosmos's policy to become independent" says that Russia will try and ensure complete independence as regards all types of its space activities; p 5 (800 words).

6. Igor Yavlyanskiy article headlined "Egyptian generals oppose Morsi for first time" says the Egyptian defense minister has publicly distanced himself from the standoff between the president and the opposition, as clashes between protesters and the police continue in the country; p 7 (557 words).

7. Oleg Shevtsov article headlined "West afraid of giving arms to Syrian opposition" says the Syrian opposition has failed to persuade the West to allocate money and armament for rebels in the country; p 7 (541 words).

8. Konstantin Volkov article headlined "Europe stands up for Russian gays" says that the State Duma's initiatives begin to impede relations between Moscow and the West; p 7 (850 words).


1. Yevgenia Pismennaya and Maxim Tovkaylo article headlined "Happiness according to Medvedev" says Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev plans to unveil yet another modernization project to be implemented by the government by 2018; pp 1, 4 (870 words).

2. Yekaterina Sobol article headlined "Aeroflot has nowhere to fly" says the Russian largest airline Aeroflot will give up plans to become a global company if the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service makes it break the strategic partnership contract with Sheremetyevo airport; pp 1, 13 (545 words).

3. Editorial headlined "Financial outskirts" criticizes the Russian authorities for wasting budget money on improving Moscow's investment image abroad because no systemic changes are made to the country's economy and the legal system; pp 1, 6 (458 words).

4. Maria Zheleznova et al. report headlined "Non-profit ones dangerous" says the Russian Justice Ministry wants to return to unscheduled inspections of Russian NGOs that were suspended during Dmitry Medvedev's presidency; p 2 (484 words).

5. Polina Khimshiashvili and Alexei Nikolsky article headlined "Hostages of friendship of people" says that having acknowledged that President Bashar al-Asad has small chances of staying in power in Syria, Russia nevertheless has not started evacuating its citizens and has not closed its diplomatic missions in the country for political reasons; p 3 (454 words).

6. Another editorial headlined "Handing children out" says that the campaign to reduce the number of orphans in Russia launched by the federal authorities risks turning into a farce as money alone cannot make people adopt orphans; p 6 (275 words).

7. Oleg Salmanov report "Frequencies to get marketable condition" says that the new law on communications will allow operators to use frequencies as goods and sell them; p 16 (800 words).

Rossiiskaya Gazeta

1. Taras Fomchenkov and Yelena Kukol article headlined "Guilty without price" says that free privatization of state-owned housing will end in Russia this March; the further mechanism of privatization is still unknown; pp 1, 4 (987 words).

2. Yekaterina Dobrynina article headlined "Proletarian over nest" comments on an alarming trend in Russian society where most young people do not want to become skilled workers and the ones who do, have no respect for their profession; pp 1, 11 (3,491 words).

3. Yury Gavrilov report "Base interest" looks at the Russian military base in Armenia; p 2 (750 words).

4. Ariadna Rokossovskaya article headlined "Brits dipped into fog" comments on the UK authorities' plans to make the country unattractive for migrants; p 6 (916 words).

5. Fedor Lukyanov report "De Gaulle and post-Soviet integration" looks at the UK's stance on its membership of the EU; p 3 (700 words).

6. Igor Dunayevskiy article headlined "Army in business again" tries to predict further developments in Egypt as the opposition has refused to conduct a dialogue with the president; p 8 (423 words).

Moskovsky Komsomolets

1. Alexander Minkin article headlined "Deputies not fools" slams the State Duma plans to amend the bill on adoption to allow people with convictions to adopt children; pp 1-2 (478 words).

2. Yulia Kalinina article headlined "Political corpse" looks at the causes that have made opposition activist Alexander Dolmatov commit suicide in Holland; pp 1, 3 (553 words).

3. Anastasia Rodionova article headlined "Belykh happens to be in Navalnyy case" reports on searches in the office of Kirov Region governor Nikita Belykh as part of law-enforcement agencies' pressure on opposition activist Alexei Navalny; p 3 (471 words).

RBK Daily

1. Ivan Petrov article headlined "They came for vodka" comments on the searches conducted at the office of Kirov Region governor Nikita Belykh; p 2 (450 words).

2. Yulia Yakovleva article headlined "Filter for parliament" says that a bill regulating the procedure of stripping deputies of immunity has been drafted to the State Duma; p 2 (400 words).

3. Alexander Litoy article headlined "Diamond trade union leader" says that trade union activist Valentin Urusov, whose imprisonment for drug storage has raised questions, may be either released on parole or pardoned; p 2 (300 words).

Novyye Izvestia

1. Yevgeniya Zubchenko article headlined "Civil debt" says that the volume of Russia's external borrowings has reached such an extent that tax payers will have to pay for it in case a financial crisis occurs; pp 1, 3 (750 words).

2. Vera Moslakova article headlined "Imitation of dialogue" says that non-parliament parties have been invited to discuss the reform on election legislation; p 2 (600 words).

3. Nadezhda Krasilova article headlined "System selection" says that Russian senators have worked out the unified procedure for stripping deputies of immunity; p 2 (600 words).

4. Sergei Putilov article headlined "Top secret bribe" comments on the report on corruption published by Transparency International, where Russia has been listed among countries with the highest level of corruption within the defense sector; p 3 (700 words).

5. Diana Yevdokimova interview with Darya Trenina, a lawyer in the high-profile case on the murder of ex-Col Yury Budanov; p 5 (1,200 words).

Novaya Gazeta

1. Andrei Kolesnikov commentary headlined "Now Russia is yours" says the Goldman Sachs bank will get involved in improving Russia's image abroad for 500,000 dollars despite the fact that the mission is impossible; p 3 (646 words).

2. Yulia Latynina article headlined "How Kremlin sends flash memory card to itself" reports on the situation in Dagestan and slams the Kremlin's personnel policy as the head of the republic Magomedov receives a high post in the Russian presidential administration; p 8(601 words).

3. Lyudmila Rybina article headlined "Lesson of biology for those mentally challenged" comments on the situation around school teacher Ilya Kolmanovskiy, who has allegedly been fired for participating in a picket against the so-called homophobic law; p 9 (700 words).

4. Vera Chelishcheva article headlined "Deceased, let me explain your rights" investigates the essence of the post-mortem trial of lawyer Sergei Magnitsky; p 12 (600 words).

Komsomolskaya Pravda

1. Alexander Zyuzyaev et al. article headlined "'Taxes are to be paid in Moscow Region'" features excerpts from the program of the acting Moscow Region governor Andrey Vorobyev; p 12 (1,100 words).

2. Darya Aslamova article headlined "Russian army men fight in Africa for 3,000 euro" presents a journalistic investigation on the ongoing war in Mali, saying that Russian soldiers are involved too; pp 14-15 (1,500 words).

Krasnaya Zvezda

1. Alexander Khrolenko article headlined "Bright light of' Sozvezdiye'" reports on the work of Sozvezdiye concern, which produces radio equipment for the Russian army; p 4 (1,600 words).

Jan. 30, 2013/BBC Monitoring/©BBC? 

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