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MOSCOW — President Vladimir Putin has instructed the government to sign an agreement on military-technical cooperation with Armenia.
A resolution to this effect was placed on the legal information portal on Monday.
GORKI — Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev instructed Deputy Prime Minister Olga Golodets to organise, within the shortest time possible, the implementation of the presidential decree on the protection of orphans.
At a traditional meeting with his deputies on Monday, January 17, Medvedev stressed that the issue of adoptions had raised a tremendous public reaction in society late last year, and it still continues.
GORKI — Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev called for harsh measures against drunk driving in Russia.
“We have returned to this issue many times, and I think we should do so again and finally take measures against drunk driving rather try to calculate per mille that may or may not be allowed before driving,’ Medvedev said at a meeting with his deputies on Monday, January 14.
MOSCOW — During the coming spring session, the State Duma will continue working on addendums to the Civil Code, and on a bill on the Accounting Chamber and a bill on elections of deputies, Speaker of the parliament’s lower house Sergei Naryshkin told reporters on Monday.
MOSCOW — Russian Defence Minister General Sergei Shoigu on Monday opened the first teleconference at the Situation Centre of the RF Armed Forces with the leaders of Defence Ministry, commanders of the army services and branches, commanders of military districts and fleets.
The Minister noted in his opening remarks that he will chair such meetings on a regular basis, once a month. The weekly meetings will be held by the Chief of the General Staff or the Deputy Minister of Defence, as well as by the commanders of military districts. The minister ordered to determine the agenda of the next weekly meetings.
MOSCOW — Russia’s army needs to get rid of foot cloths, RF Defence Minister General Sergei Shoigu said on Monday.
“It’s 2013, and we are still talking about foot cloths,” the minister said at the first teleconference at the Situation Centre of the RF Armed Forces with the leadership of the Defence Ministry, commanders of the army services and branches, commanders of military districts and fleets.
VLADIVOSTOK — The construction of ships at a new shipbuilding complex Zvezda (star) in the city of Bolshoi Kamen (large stone), Primorsky (maritime) Territory, is to be started at the end of 2013.
The installation of unique equipment, which will make it possible to manufacture marine structural elements weighing up to 300 tonnes and ships with a launching weight of up to 13,000 tonnes will begin at the Zvezda in spring. In prospect, the Bolshoi Kamen-based shipyard will be building ocean-going transport ships with a deadweight of up to 300,000 tonnes.
MOSCOW — During the past year, Russia’s Investigative Committee sent over 200 requests to foreign counterparts for legal advice in investigation of corruption cases, Head of the Investigative Committee’s Department on Control over investigation of corruption crimes Vladimir Makarov said in an interview with Itar-Tass on Monday.
“Our task is to make corruption unprofitable. So that a person knows that for a stolen million he will have to pay 100 million, and thus a major task is to find the assets,” he said.
MOSCOW — Russia’s Aerospace Defence Troops (VKO) will start a new space year on Tuesday, January 15, by launching a Rokot carrier rocket with a military satellite aboard at the Plesetsk spaceport.
“The decision to fuel the Rokot carrier rocket was made at a meeting of the State Commission held at Plesetsk. In accordance with the process schedule, the Rokot carrier rocket was taken to the launching site on January 9,” VKO spokesperson, Colonel Alexei Zolotukhin told Itar-Tass on Monday, January 14.
MOSCOW — Russian wheat export increased by 18 percent in January-November 2012 and reached 15.293 million tonnes, the Federal Customs Service (FTS) reported on Monday.
The prices of supplies increased by 1.4 times and amounted to 4.282 million U.S. dollars.
Export to foreign countries increased by 19.8 percent (14.797 million tonnes).
At the same time, the service reported that in January-November 2012 Russia increased wheat import by 131 times and amounted to 183,400 tonnes, the FTS said.
MOSCOW — The Russian Interior Ministry has launched a multimedia website, Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev announced on Monday, January 14.
“Today we are launching a revamped version of the Interior Ministry’s official website, which includes all official sites of interior bodies,” the minister said.
MOSCOW — The Justice Ministry has denied registration to the Pirate Party of Russia, its staff chairman Pavel Rassudov said on Monday, January 14.
“We have been denied registration on absolutely absurd grounds. They said that the name of the party does not correspond to its goals and objectives. The ministry officials said that piracy means sea robbery or production of counterfeit goods, while the party’s goals and objectives are to protect the rights and legitimate interests of Internet users and nomination of a presidential candidate by secret ballot,” Rassudov said.
MOSCOW — Russian oil export increased by 6.3 percent in the first 11 months of 2012 as compared with the same period of the year 2011 and reached 165.651 billion U.S. dollars, the Federal Customs Service reported on Monday.
A year earlier Russia exported oil at the sum of 155.868 billion U.S. dollars.
Oil export accounted on foreign countries: it cost 155.391 billion U.S. dollars against 152.661 billion U.S. dollars in January-November 2011, the Federal Customs Service said.
MOSCOW — Russia’s international reserves as of January 1, 2013 stood at 537.6 billion U.S. dollars compared to 498.6 billion U.S. dollars a year earlier, the Central Bank said on Monday, January 14.
Russia’s international reserves thus increased by 7.8 percent (or by 39 billion U.S. dollars) in 2012. They include highly liquid foreign assets held by the Central Bank and the Russian government. International reserves consist of foreign currency, special drawing rights, IMF reserve positions and monetary gold.
YEKATERINBURG — The ninth international exhibition of arms Russian Expo Arms-2013 will be held at the Staratel range in Nizhny Tagil from 25 to 28 September. The corresponding decree was signed on Monday by Sverdlovsk Region’s governor Yevgeny Kuivashev.
According to the Expo organisers, the event is dedicated to “active innovative policy of the enterprises of the defence and industrial complex, adoption of advanced technology are guarantees of success of modernization and creation of samples of armament and military equipment, and perspective view of Armed Forces of Russia.”
MOSCOW — The Russian Emergencies Ministry will focus in 2013 on preventing emergency situations, introducing new approaches in supervisory work and working with municipal entities.
Emergencies Minister Vladimir Puchkov announced the ministry’s priorities on Monday, January 14.
MOSCOW — The Russian Communist Party intends to submit a petition to the Constitutional Court, asking it to proclaim the new education law unconstitutional.
“We are drafting a petition to the Constitutional Court for recognising the new education law unconstitutional under Article 55(2) of the Russian Constitution,” First Duma Deputy Speaker Ivan Melnikov of the Communist Party said on Monday, January 14.
NOVO-OGAREVO — The Ministry of Industry and Trade has suggested developing a system of outlets that will sell Russian products at affordable prices.
This is one of the measures the government intends to undertake to support the light industry following Russia’s admission to the World Trade Organisation (WTO), Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov said at a meeting with President Vladimir Putin on Monday, January 14.
MOSCOW — The faction of the United Russia Party in the State Duma so far sees no need for a parliamentary investigation into the criteria of effectiveness of higher educational establishments and prefers to influence the situation by means of the existing formats of interaction with the Ministry of Education and Science, Nikolai Bulayev, the first deputy head of the United Russia faction in the State Duma and former head of the Federal Education Agency (Rosobrazovaniye), told Itar-Tass on Monday. He commented on press reports that deputies of the CPRF had collected 90 signatures to start such an investigation. The Communists, in particular, intend to find out how and when such criteria had been adopted.
MOSCOW — Atomenergoproekt has been named the chief architect of Smolensk nuclear power plant Phase Two, the company said on Monday, January 14.
The new plant will operate two reactors of 1,200 megawatt each and will be built using the VVER-TOI technology. It is to replace RBMK capacities of Smolensk I subject to decommissioning.
MOSCOW — The Czech gas pipeline GAZELLE, which is an extension of the Nord Stream pipeline, was put into operation on Monday, January 14, Stroytransgaz, which built a section of it, said.
The commissioning of GAZELLE will transport Russian gas from the north of Europe to its southern and southeastern regions.
The GAZELLE gas pipeline can carry up to 30 billion cubic metres of gas a year.
MOSCOW — A World Association of Nuclear Operators’ (WANO) representation office has been inaugurated at the Novovoronezh nuclear power plant.
“The representation office will operate to expand international contacts of Novovoronezh NPP aiming at both WANO and the IAEA,” the plant manager noted.
MOSCOW — Russia’s Federal Service for Supervision of Education and Science will evaluate compliance with the license requirements by more than 250 state-run and private higher educational institutions in 2013.
KALININGRAD — The Atlantida (Atlantis) research vessel of the Atlantic Research Institute of Fisheries and Oceanography (AtlantNIRO) for first time over more than 20-year is conducting a scientific expedition in the exclusive economic zone of the Republic of Guinea-Bissau, Deputy Director of the institute Alexander Arkhipov told Itar-Tass on Monday.
“The main goal of the expedition of RV Atlantis on board of which there are Russian scientists and four experts from Guinea-Bissau – is to assess the stocks of exploited populations of pelagic fish species - the West African horse mackerel, sardines, and other commercial species - by means of trawl and acoustic survey, and also to study the pelagic ecosystem in the Atlantic Ocean near the exclusive economic zone of Guinea-Bissau,” Arkhipov said.
BRUSSELS — The Russian and NATO chiefs of General Staff will meet in Brussels on January 16 to discuss cooperation within the Russia-NATO Council session, the NATO press service told Itar-Tass.
“The meeting will focus on Russian-NATO interaction in 2013 amidst the changing geopolitical situation. We will discuss possibilities to discuss military cooperation,” the press service said.
CHERNOVTSY, Ukraine — Russia is open for strengthening strategic partnership with Ukraine, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.
Speaking at Chernovtsy National University on Monday, Lavrov said, “Russia and Ukraine are resolving similar issues to ensure the sustainable social and economic development, increase living standards and integrating into the world economy. If we take into account our common historical heritage, the deepest cultural and spiritual fraternity and the closest economic interests, it will be better to resolve these issues through cooperation with each other.”
CHERNOVTSY — Ukraine’s course towards European integration in way means that it is going to lose contacts “with its friend, including Russia,” Ukrainian Foreign Minister Leonid Kozhara said on Monday.
“We have much in common with Russia,” Kozhara said at a meeting with students and the faculty of the Chernivtsi National University. “We are following parallel courses in establishing ties with Europe and nothing can prevent us from coordinating our efforts.”
“Both Ukraine and Russia are interested in unification rather than in deepening a gap between them,” he stressed.
CHERNOVTSY — Ukraine intends to focus the efforts on contributing to the Transdniestria settlement in the course of the OSCE chairmanship, Foreign Minister Leonid Kozhara said.
KIEV — The Donetsk Region Economic Court has started bankruptcy proceedings with regard to the Donbassaero airline, which is a member of the “Ukrainian Aviation Group” alliance and controlled by Igor Kolomoisky, co-owner of the Privat Group.
The court ordered a moratorium on the creditor’s claims and authorised financial restructuring of the debtor in the next six months until July 9. A preliminary court session to consider the creditors’ claims was set for March 27, one of the Ukrainian television channels reported on Monday, January 14.
MOSCOW — The Ukrainian airline Aerosvit has paid a 521,000 U.S. dollar debt to Russia for air navigation services in October, the Federal Air Transport Agency said on Monday, January 14.
“The deadline for paying the dent of 697,000 U.S. dollars for air navigation services in November ends on January 24 of this year,” the Agency said.
BAKU — The Foreign Ministers of Azerbaijan and Armenia will meet the Russian, American and French co-chairmen of the OSCE Minsk Group in Paris on January 28, Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mamedyarov said.
Speaking at a press conference after Monday’s talks with Norwegian counterpart Espen Barth Eide, Mamedyarov said the final format of the meeting, which would focus on the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement, had not been determined.