19 Апр, 2021

Russia’s response to US sanctions

Statement by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on response to US sanctions

  • American Ambassador Sullivan was advised to leave for Washington for consultations
  • 10 American diplomats will be offered to leave Russia
  • the work of American foundations and non-governmental organizations that interfere in Russian domestic politics will be terminated
  • a list of 8 leaders of the Washington administration will be published, who will be included in the sanctions list
  • Russia will begin the procedure for denouncing the agreement on the travel of diplomats outside their places of base (earlier it was possible to travel within a radius of 25 miles without notification, but American diplomats went wherever they wanted)
  • Russians and third-country nationals will be banned from getting a job at the US Embassy or Consulate General
  • in the future, the United States may be asked to bring the number of employees in Russia (now there are 450) in line with the number of Russian employees in the United States (300)
  • so far, Russia has decided to keep the most painful measures for American business in reserve, but there are opportunities for such a hit harder

Russia has banned former US National Security Assistant John Bolton from entering the country, as well as the Director of Central Intelligence and the head of the US Central Intelligence Agency, Robert Woolsey.

In addition, US Attorney General Merrick Garland, US Federal Bureau of Prisons Director Michael Carvajal, US Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mallorcas, US President’s Internal Policy Adviser Susan Rice, FBI Director Christopher Ray and US National Intelligence Director Avril Haines have been banned from entering Russia.

Medvedev praised Putin for rising wages in the country

Chairman of the United Russia party, deputy chairman of the Security Council Dmitry Medvedev at a meeting with participants in the primaries of United Russia said that «almost no one [from other countries] has such an increase in the social component» as in Russia. »

Nobody remembers almost, when Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin became president in 2000, the average salary in the country was about $ 50. Nevertheless, this is what we had 20 years ago. Feel the difference. If we compare us with other countries, then almost no one has such an increase in the social component.

Raul Castro leaves the post of the head of the Communist Party of Cuba

Raul Castro left the post of first secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Cuba. He made the corresponding statement on April 16 during the VIII Party Congress in Havana.

I strongly believe in the strength, exemplary character and understanding of my compatriots, and as long as I live, I will be ready, standing in the stirrups, to defend the fatherland, revolution and socialism, ”Castro quotes Reuters.

New law on mass events adopted in Belarus

All mass events in Belarus, according to the adopted amendments, can now be held only with the permission of the local authorities. It is they who will determine the places for such actions. The notification procedure for organizing and holding mass events in permanent, specially designated places, which was previously in force in Belarus, has been canceled.

The Russian prosecutor’s office demanded to recognize the FBK as an extremist organization

If this happens, then …

  • Employees can be prosecuted as organizers of an extremist organization (part 2 of Article 282.2 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, from six to ten years in prison) and as participants
  • Criminal cases can be opened for financing FBK
  • Demonstration of symbols faces administrative responsibility
  • Media will be required to indicate extremist status

The United States conducts an audit of Russian companies

The US Department of Justice is checking «dozens of Russian companies» for threats to US supplies. Assistant Attorney General John Demers said that the process could take months, and the US Department of Commerce could decide on individual organizations from Russia in the future.

“We have started the first phase of analyzing what we need to look closely at,” Demers said.

He explained that when evaluating a particular company, experts will check whether it has connections with the Russian special services. According to him, foreign companies that have offices in Russia will also be examined.

Total capitalization of all existing cryptocurrencies

The total capitalization of all existing cryptocurrencies has exceeded $ 2 trillion. More than half of this figure is expected to come from bitcoin: the total value of all bitcoins is now estimated at $ 1.172 trillion. Further, the numbers are more modest: 283 billion Etherium, 85 — Binance Coin, 78 from XRP and 602 billion add up all the other 4-plus thousand cryptocurrencies.

Khusnullin instructed to create a headquarters to increase housing prices after criticism of Putin

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Marat Khusnullin instructed to create a headquarters to analyze the growth of housing prices, it will include representatives of the Ministry of Construction and Housing and Utilities, the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) and Glavgosexpertiza, according to the government’s website.

The state of the Russian economy can be defined as long-term stagnation.

If we exclude the 2020th covid year, the average annual growth rate of the Russian economy from 2009 to 2019 was 1%, and over five years (in 2014–2019) — only 0.8%. This is significantly lower than the growth rates of countries with a similar level of development (countries with an upper middle income: 4.6% over 11 years and 4% over five), the average annual growth rates of the world economy (2.5% and 2.8%, respectively). This is stated in the expert report of the Liberal Mission Foundation “Stagnation-2. Consequences, Risks and Alternatives for the Russian Economy ”.

In terms of GDP per capita, calculated at purchasing power parity, Russia from 2009 to 2019 gave way to seven countries — Latvia, Lithuania, Malaysia, Panama, Poland, Romania and Seychelles. The same indicator for Kazakhstan was 89% of the Russian in 2009, and in 2019 — already 97%, the authors of the report note.

The State Duma rejects the bill on exemption from personal income tax for citizens with low incomes

The State Duma of Russia rejected the bill, according to which it was supposed to exempt from the payment of personal income tax (PIT) citizens whose monthly income does not exceed double the minimum wage (minimum wage), follows from the information on the official portal of regulatory legal acts.

Czech Republic is sending employees of the Russian Embassy

The Czech Republic is expelling 18 employees of the Russian embassy, ​​who, according to local special services, are officers of Russian intelligence. This was announced on Saturday at an emergency press conference in Prague by First Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Jan Hamacek, who is also acting as Minister of Foreign Affairs.

As the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, I decided to expel all the employees of the Russian Embassy in Prague, who were clearly identified by our special services as officers of the Russian special services of the SVR and the GRU. Within 48 hours, 18 employees of the Russian embassy must leave the Czech Republic, he said.

FSB of the Russian Federation and the KGB of Belarus announced the impending assassination attempt on Lukashenka

Belarusian political scientist Alyaksandr Feduta, head of the opposition BPF party Grigory Kostusev and a Belarusian lawyer living in the United States Yury Zenkovich, who were detained this week in Belarus and Russia, were preparing an attempt on the life of Alyaksandr Lukashenka and his family. This was stated by Lukashenka himself. According to him, the US special services were behind the preparation of the assassination attempt:

“Then we discovered the work of clearly foreign intelligence services — most likely the CIA, the FBI, I don’t know who of the Americans worked there. We discovered their desire to come to Minsk and start organizing an assassination attempt on the president and children. «

The FSB of the Russian Federation confirmed the information of the KGB of Belarus and stated that it had participated in the operation to detain Feduta and Zenkovich in Moscow. According to the FSB, they arrived in the city after consultations in the United States and Poland to meet with «opposition-minded generals of the Belarusian Armed Forces.» At the same time, according to the FSB, the coup in Belarus was planned not for the summer, but for May 9.

Tikhanovskaya considered a provocation of reports of a coup attempt in Belarus

Information about the attempted military coup in Belarus and the assassination of President Alexander Lukashenko is a provocation of the special services. This was stated by the leader of the Belarusian opposition Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, Interfax reports.

“It is necessary to refrain from hasty conclusions and decisions that may damage the national interests, sovereignty and independence of Belarus,” the statement says.

It is noted that Tikhanovskaya is in favor of resolving the political crisis in the country through negotiations and holding fair elections

Two landing ships of the Northern Fleet of Russia entered the Black Sea

Two large landing ships (BDK) of the Northern Fleet of Russia — «Alexander Otrakovsky» and «Kondopoga» — on Saturday, having passed the Bosphorus, entered the Black Sea, Turkish websites tracking the movements of warships reported. The warships are said to be heading for Sevastopol.

UK to send two ships to the Black Sea in May

Britain will send two ships to the Black Sea in May to express solidarity with Kiev and NATO, according to The Times, citing sources. It is planned that in the Mediterranean Sea they will be covered by the aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth. The US decision to abandon the entry of ships into the Black Sea does not affect the plans of the British side, a senior defense source told The Times.

Biden supported opposition leader Alexei Navalny

US President Joe Biden called the situation unfair and unacceptable, leading to a deterioration in the health of opposition leader Alexei Navalny. Earlier, Navalny’s attending physician Anastasia Vasilyeva said that blood tests indicate a risk of cardiac arrest.

French authorities will support farmers

French authorities will allocate € 1 billion to farmers affected by severe frosts, which killed a significant part of the vines and crops of other crops, said French Prime Minister Jean Castex.

“The state must be ready for this catastrophe. In an exceptional situation, exceptional measures are taken, ”the prime minister said, announcing the formation of a special fund to help those employed in agriculture. Farmers will be exempted from social contributions, property tax, and some other support measures will be activated

Transfer a share to a government-related investor

Chinese financial group Ant Group (a subsidiary of Alibaba) is exploring ways to ease pressure from Chinese financial regulators, including the possible withdrawal of Jack Ma from his stake in the fintech company.

From January to March of this year, representatives of the People’s Bank of China and the Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission held a series of negotiations with Ant Group and Ma, at which they discussed the possibility of the businessman’s withdrawal from the company.

Ant Group hoped that Ma’s stake would be sold to current investors in the company or Alibaba Group. But during negotiations with Chinese regulators, the businessman was given to understand that he would not be able to sell his share to an individual or legal entity close to him. Instead, Ma will have to withdraw entirely from Ant Group’s capital. There is another option: to transfer the businessman’s share to a Chinese investor connected with the state.

Roskosmos has decided on the landing site for the Oryol spacecraft

Roskosmos has decided on the landing site for the Oryol spacecraft after flights to the Moon — this is an area 65 km from Orenburg. There are no villages or villages within a radius of 8 km from this point. «Eagle» will fly to the Moon approximately in 2028-2030. The spacecraft will go to near-earth orbit without a crew in 2023, and with a crew in 2025.

SpaceX will bring NASA astronauts to the lunar surface

SpaceX will create a lander for landing astronauts on the lunar surface as part of the Artemis program. The company received a corresponding NASA contract for $ 2.89 billion. This was reported by the American space agency itself.

In September 2020, NASA presented an updated plan for the Artemis lunar program. According to the schedule, the first unmanned flight to the moon will take place in 2021, the landing on the moon is scheduled for 2024.

New Zealand will be completely banned from smoking

New Zealand wants to introduce a complete smoking ban for those born after 2004. It is reported by the British newspaper The Guardian. It is assumed that the authorities will gradually increase the age at which the purchase of tobacco products is allowed, and the generation born after 2004 will be completely banned from purchasing cigarettes. With such a radical measure, the government expects to achieve a complete smoking cessation in the country by 2025.

A material that converts heat into electricity was created in the USA

A team of specialists from the United States of America has created a material based on the properties of a crystal and an amorphous substance. This technology converts heat into electricity. You can read more about this in the Joule magazine.

US Army reconnaissance units switch to electric vehicles

According to the publication «Voennoye Obozreniye», such cars are planned to be protected by armor from small arms. The variant already proposed by the developers has a weight of 3.6 tons and can carry up to 2 tons of payloads. It is armed with an MK-19 grenade launcher and a 12.7 caliber M2 machine gun. It is also possible to install Javelin anti-tank missiles. The Pentagon still demands that armored electric vehicles can be dropped from aircraft or transported by helicopters on suspension. Among the main advantages of electric vehicles are called low visibility in the infrared range for enemy homing missiles.

US and China adopt joint statement on climate

The United States and China agreed to cooperate with each other for the sake of climate, adopting a joint statement following the meeting in Shanghai. This was announced by the US State Department, reports TASS.

«The United States and China are committed to working with each other and with the rest of the world to tackle the climate crisis, which needs to be addressed with the utmost seriousness and urgency,» the State Department said.

Chinese Foreign Ministry outraged by US position on Uyghur issue

Chinese Deputy Foreign Minister Le Yucheng likened the United States to a «pretending to be asleep» person. This was reported by RIA Novosti with reference to the Chinese Foreign Ministry. Le Yucheng explained that Washington still does not trust Beijing’s official statements on the situation in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. He stressed that, despite a series of press conferences by the Chinese authorities and the Xinjiang government, the US administration prefers to believe the stories composed by radical elements in the region and the fakes of the Western media.

Russia is ready to create its own space station

Russia plans to create its own space station and will warn the ISS partners about leaving the project from 2025, Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov said in the Moscow. Kremlin. Putin program by Pavel Zarubin on the Russia 1 TV channel (VGTRK). So the Deputy Prime Minister commented on the information that the government proposes to discuss in advance with foreign partners the plans of the Russian Federation to build a national space station.

Czech Republic believes that Russian special services are behind the explosions in Vrbetica

The Czech Republic announced the involvement of Russian special services in the 2014 explosions at ammunition depots in the village of Vrbetice in the southeast of the country. 18 employees of the Russian embassy are expelled from Prague — they are considered agents of the GRU under diplomatic cover. Also put on the wanted list are two Russian citizens under the names Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, whom the UK had previously called the GRU officers who poisoned Sergei and Yulia Skripal in Salisbury. The Czech police believe that Petrov and Boshirov personally staged an explosion at the warehouse in order to prevent the supply of weapons to Ukraine.

The Russian Foreign Ministry protested to Prague after the announcement of the expulsion of diplomats

The Russian Foreign Ministry expressed a strong protest to Prague after the announcement of the expulsion of diplomats. The corresponding statement was published on the website of the diplomatic department.

«We express our resolute protest to the Czech authorities. We will take retaliatory measures that will make the authors of this provocation realize their full responsibility for destroying the foundations of the normal development of relations between our countries,» the Russian Foreign Ministry said. — «It is impossible not to see the American trail as well,» the statement says.

Russia has developed a system of «air mining» against UAVs

The world’s first «air mining» system designed to destroy unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) with patrolling ammunition was developed in Russia. This was announced on Sunday by the chief designer of the ZALA Aero group of companies (part of the Kalashnikov group of the Rostec state corporation) on the air of the Vesti Nedeli program with Dmitry Kiselev on the Russia-1 TV channel.

The head of the Czech Foreign Ministry announced his intention to discuss the «Vrbetice case» within the EU

At the meeting of the foreign ministers of the EU countries, the «Vrbetice case» will be discussed, said the head of the Czech Foreign Ministry Jan Hamacek. “I have informed our ambassadors to the EU and NATO to report on the Vrbetica case.

«I have informed our ambassadors to the EU and NATO to report on the Vrbetice case. On Monday I will talk about this at a meeting of EU foreign ministers,» Hamacek wrote on Twitter.

Biden announced the state of emergency in the field of national security

United States President Joe Biden has declared a national security emergency over Russia’s actions. This was announced on Thursday by the White House, writes RIA Novosti.

I have issued a decree on a national emergency that is emerging in the country in connection with an atypical and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy and economy of the United States of America, which comes from certain harmful actions of the Russian government. — said in a letter from US President Joe Biden to Congress

The Russian Air Force transferred 50 planes of the Southern Military District to the Crimea and the Astrakhan Region

The Air Force of the Russian Federation conducted a control check, in the framework of which they transferred Su-25SM3 attack aircraft from an airfield in the Stavropol Territory to operational airfields in the Crimea. The squadron of aircraft was transferred to the Ashuluk training ground in the Astrakhan region.

“The crews of the Su-25SM3 aviation unit of the 4th Army of the Air Force and Air Defense of the Southern Military District (YuVO), stationed in the Stavropol Territory, have been relocated to operational airfields in the Crimea. In turn, the Su-25SM3 squadron of the Air Force and Air Defense Association of the Southern Military District was relocated from a military airfield in Crimea to the Ashuluk training ground in the Astrakhan region as part of a control check during the winter training period, ”the press service of the Southern Military District said.