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News summary for January 24

January 25, 2013, 9:17 UTC+3
All the headlines from the day's news
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MOSCOW — Moscow is committed to build constructive relations with Tallinn, Russian president Vladimir Putin said on Thursday.

“We are ready to build constructive relations with Estonia based on the principles of good neighborly relations and taking into account each other’s interests,” he said while receiving credentials from the new ambassador of a number of foreign countries. “We are neighbors and we have coinciding interests. So, I suggest we should rely upon this positive potential.”

The Russian president also pledged to develop relations with Moldova, with which Russia has traditional relations of friendship and shares common spiritual values. “We are ready to expand contacts both in the bilateral format and within the Commonwealth of Independent States, we will help settle the Dniester problems,” he stressed.


MOSCOW — President Vladimir Putin said Russia would defend the U.N. central role in international affairs.

By accepting credentials from new ambassadors on Thursday, Putin said, “Russia calls for creating an open atmosphere on the world arena and settling the existing problems by political and diplomatic means based on full respect of sovereignty, territorial integrity and equality of all states.”


MOSCOW — Russian President Vladimir Putin expects that during its current G20 presidency, Russia will manage to “create preconditions for improving a general economic situation and putting the international economy on the footing of sustainable and long-term development”. Putin said that at a ceremony of receiving credentials from foreign ambassadors.

According to the president, “the global economic situation remains difficult, problems of a sovereign debt accumulate, financial markets are unstable and the euro zone is volatile”.

Putin pledged that together with its G20 partners, Russia will be trying to solve these problems.


DAVOS — Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev hopes the Russian economy will grow by three percent in 2013.

“You and me are certain about three-percent growth, but I hope for more,” he said at a business luncheon held by VTB Capital. “It is obvious that three percent is some averaged value, which Russia and the world may well count on this year. But we all should make the growth more tangible.”


MOSCOW — The number of crimes involving the making and dissemination of child pornography on the Internet has increased by more than 12 times in the past four years, Deputy Interior Minister Igor Zubov told lawmakers on Wednesday, as he presented amendments to the legislation to combat child trafficking, child pornography and child prostitution. The house later approved the 1st reading of the amendments.

"The number of crimes related to the making of child porn and spreading it through the Internet has increased by more than 12 times. Police reported 554 such crimes in 2012," Zubov said.


VLADIVOSTOK — The ownership of part of the Defence Ministry's lands has been transferred to Vladivostok municipality and put on the balance-sheet of the city by a decision taken here on Thursday at a session of the City Duma legislature. Those lands will be used primarily for housing construction.


MOSCOW — Russia’s arms exporting corporation Rosoboronexport has dismissed Russian media reports and rumors on unofficial Chinese websites Russia might supply 36 long-range bombers Tu-22M3 to China.


MOSCOW — Warships and support vessels of the Russian Navy in 2012 made more than 40 business calls at foreign ports for replenishing the supplies of food, water, fuel and lubricants during fulfilling the tasks in the distant sea and ocean areas, spokesman for the RF Defence Ministry’s logistics department Alexander Kolpakov told Itar-Tass on Tuesday.


MOSCOW — Punishment for violating the feelings of believers must be balanced, members of the presidential council for the promotion of civil society and human rights told a news conference on Thursday.

“The theme of protecting religious feelings looks important to us. In a sense they are already protected,” HRC chief Mikhail Fedotov said. In his opinion the proposal made by some State Duma members to move the article of the Administrative Code establishing punishment for the violation of believers’ feelings to the Criminal Code would entail negative effects.


MOSCOW — Russia's gold and foreign exchange reserves climbed by 4 billion dollars (or by 0,76 percent) from 526.4 billion dollars to billion 530.4 dollars as of January 11-18, the External and Public Relations Department of the Central Bank said on Thursday.


GROZNY — Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov told journalists on Thursday that 11 militants had been destroyed in a special anti-terror operation in Chechnya.

"An intensive operation to search for, block and neutralize participants of illegal armed groups has been under way in Chechnya’s Vedensky district for the past two days. Eleven militants, including militant commanders Husein Gakayev and Muslim Gakayev, were killed in the clashes,” Kadyrov said.

Kadyrov added that another militant named Demishov had recently surrendered to the law enforcers.


MOSCOW — Russian Minister of Education and Science Dmitry Livanov supported the idea of a student council on the quality of education. Yuri Nakonechny, the president of the All-Russian Union of Students, suggested the idea at the meeting of the Council for Youth Affairs at the ministry on Thursday.


MOSCOW — Damascus assures Moscow that the arsenals of its chemical weapons are safely protected, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov told Itar-Tass on Thursday.

“We remain in constant touch with Syrians on that issue, persuading them in every way to ensure the maximally safe storage of chemical arsenals,” Gatilov confirmed. “They assure us that they are taking all necessary measures for that,” he added.


DAVOS — Russia’s Central Bank expects inflation rates of up to seven percent in Russia in February, First Deputy Chairman of the Central Bank, Alexei Ulyukayev said on Thursday.


DAVOS — The North Caucasus Resorts OJSC drafts and will shortly present a program for work with small businesses of North Caucasian regions, their involvement in the project to set up a tourism cluster in the south of Russia.

The company sees this task a priority at the current stage of project implementation, company CEO Akhmed Bilalov told reporters within the framework of the World Economic Forum in Davos.


DAVOS — Yekaterinburg presented on Thursday its bid to host the World EXPO 2020. The bid was presented on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos by Sverdlovsk region governor Yevgeny Kuivashev.


BEIJING — Russia-China trade turnover in 2013 will increase up to more than $100 billion, Tung Wei, an expert at Central University of Finance and Economics (CUFE), told Itar-Tass here on Thursday.


BUENOS AIRES — Russia and Paraguay are preparing by the middle of this year to sign an agreement on abolishing the visa regime between the two countries, Russian Ambassador in Asuncion Grigory Mashkov told Itar-Tass in an interview on Wednesday after consultations at the level of Directors of the Consular Departments of the two countries’ Foreign Ministries.


HANOI — Trade turnover between Russia and Vietnam exceeded 3.6 billion U.S. dollars in 2012, Russian trade representative to Vietnam Maxim Golikov told Itar-Tass on Thursday.


BISHKEK — Kyrgyzstan this year will open its embassy in Afghanistan. The press service of the Kyrgyzstani Foreign Ministry told Itar-Tass on Thursday that it was announced at consultations of the two Foreign Ministries’ officials held here.


BISHKEK — Kyrgyzstan’s parliament on Thursday ratified in the first reading an agreement with Russia on joint construction of a number of hydropower plants in the country, the press service of the Kyrgyz parliament told Itar-Tass.

“The lawmakers passed a law on the ratification of intergovernmental agreements with Russia on the construction and operation of a series of hydroelectric power plants in the Upper Naryn River, and on the construction and operation of the Kambar-Ata hydropower plant,” the press service said.


TBILISI — Georgia’s Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili said on Thursday that during his meetings in Davos he would do his best to awake foreign investors’ interest in his country’s economy.


TBILISI — Georgian authorities are drafting a special report on the national systems of control over the safety of foods, which the Georgian officials plan presenting to their Russian counterparts at meetings in Moscow, Tengiz Kalandadze, a deputy director of the National Agency for Foodstuffs told reporters Thursday.

Kalandadze is expected to be on a Georgian delegation that will go to Moscow at the very end of this month where talks will be held on a return of Georgian products to the Russian market.

He said that the Russian side is due to put forward its requirements to the imports of Georgian wines, mineral water, fruits, and vegetables.


STRASBOURG — The Russian and Georgian delegations in PACE are ready for a dialogue to improve the political climate in relations between the countries, the head of the Russian delegation, Alexei Pushkov, told reporters after a meeting with his Georgian counterpart, Tido Dzhaparidze (from the Georgian Dream Party).

According to Pushkov, an agreement on full-format talks between Russian and Georgian parliamentarians that must take place during PACE’s spring session in April, has become the main result of the talks.


DAVOS — Georgian Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili said his meeting with Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev at Davos was brief, but he had no doubt that there would be many more meetings.


DAVOS — Georgia’s Economics Minister Georgy Kvirikashvili has spoken in favor of resuming close economic relations with Russian companies.

“Resuming contacts with Russian companies is a good possibility to promote the development of Georgia’s economy, to create new jobs,” he told Georgian journalists.


KIEV — Vitaly Klichko, the leader of the Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reforms, believes that the creation of a unified opposition coalition in Ukraine won’t be an effective solution, the press service of the Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reforms said on Thursday.

"We have different programs, different political platforms, different ideology and different voters. Working separately is much more effective,” Klichko said. He explained that in the previous elections in which his party had taken part as a separate force it gained more votes by the overall result of three forces than as part of one political election bloc.


DAVOS — Ukraine plans to host a regional summit on Europe and Asia under the auspices of the World Economic Forum, Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich said on Thursday after a meeting with Klaus Schwab, the founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum.


DAVOS — Ukraine and the EU plan signing an association agreement at a summit conference of the so-called Eastern Partnership countries, which is due in Lithuania’s capital Vilnius in November, Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich said here Thursday.

He also said the European Parliament speaker, Martin Schultz and he had discussed preparations for the Ukraine-EU summit scheduled for February 25.


DUSHANBE — Tajik President Emomali Rakhmon has expressed concern over increased activities of terrorists and religious extremists in Tajikistan and criticized law enforcers for acting insufficiently in this direction.

"Six hundred members of banned parties and organizations, including the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, Hizb-ut-Tahrir and Dzhamoati Tablig, have been arrested in the republic over the past five years,” the presidential service quoted Rakhmon as saying at a meeting of the Tajik Security Council on Thursday.

Rakhmon emphasized that some of those people had either undergone or continued training at foreign theological institutions, which are largely underground and spread terrorist and extremist ideas.




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