21 Дек, 2021

Russian-Ukrainian relations

According to a survey by the Levada Center (recognized as a foreign agent in Russia) in Russia and KIIS in Ukraine, ordinary residents of the countries still, despite all the difficulties, treat each other well: 25% of Russians treat Ukrainians very well, 58% — Okay; 15% of Ukrainians treat Russians very well, 61% — well. Total: in both countries, more than 3/4 of all residents treat ordinary residents of a neighboring country well

Another question is that there is a very negative attitude towards the leadership of neighbors, both among us and among the Ukrainians (note, on the lower graphs «good» is shades of red, not blue, as above). 43% of Russians treat the Ukrainian leadership very badly, 24% mostly badly. For residents of Ukraine and attitudes towards the Russian leadership are the same figures: 55% and 21%, respectively

 

<<< News Feed December 21, 2021 >>>

 

Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc has reached an agreement under which Qatar will invest in a British small modular reactor business. Qatar is investing £ 85m ($ 112m) in Rolls-Royce SMR Limited.

The UK government has also invested £ 250m in the project, giving the company enough funds to begin obtaining design permits and identifying locations for assembling the units, Bloomberg reports.

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According to Romir, real inflation for Russians was twice the official inflation rate. The basket of goods collected by real consumption has risen in price by 17% over the year. The FMCG deflator index in monthly dynamics increased by 1.7% (3 pp) and amounted to 135%. The base for calculating the index is January 2019.

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The Gulagu.net project has published new footage of torture in colonies — this time in Krasnoyarsk.

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The official Yandex Go public was hacked and phishing links were sent to subscribers. Many users took part in a fake giveaway and lost money.

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The first trailer for «The Northman» by Robert Eggers («The Lighthouse», «The Witch») has been released. The film tells the story of a young Viking prince who avenges the death of his father. The film stars: Alexander Skarsgard, Nicole Kidman, Anya Taylor-Joy, Ethan Hawke, Willem Dafoe, Bjork. The film will be released in Russian on April 28, 2022

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The prototype of the Defiant X multipurpose helicopter has reached a speed of 457 kilometers per hour, confirming its capabilities, corresponding to the characteristics of the FLRAA program, Boeing reports.

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In Russia, the issuance of excise stamps for tobacco products has been tightened. According to the amendments, it is prohibited to issue special stamps without registering manufacturers in the Honest Sign system.

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Investigative Committee of Belarus handed over to the prosecutor the criminal case against the Russian woman Sofia Sapega for referral to the court. The defense has finished getting acquainted with the case materials, the press service of the UK said in Telegram. She will be judged on seven articles, including organizing threats to the security forces, inciting hatred, obstructing the work of journalists and disseminating personal data.

Sofia Sapega was detained in May during a forced landing of a Ryanair plane together with the former editor-in-chief of the Nexta Telegram channel Roman Protasevich. Thanks to the conclusion of a pre-trial agreement, the Russian woman faces a minimum term of six years in prison. The investigation believes that she was in charge of the administration of the Telegram channel Black Book of Belarus, which was recognized as extremist in Belarus. On December 8, she was finally charged.

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Russia declared two German diplomats persona non grata in response to a similar decision by Germany, the Russian Foreign Ministry said. The ministry announced the expulsion to German Ambassador Gese Andreas von Gaire, who was summoned to the Foreign Ministry on December 20. The German government considered the decision to expel the two German diplomats unreasonable.

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Russian officials who traveled to Buenos Aires last week brought the country’s authorities Putin’s proposal to abandon the dollar in mutual settlements and replace it with national currencies — the ruble and the peso, El Cronista reported, citing Argentine sources.

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The Russians have invested five trillion rubles in the crypt. This was announced by Anatoly Aksakov, Chairman of the State Duma Committee on the Financial Market. He also called on the authorities to put an end to the issue of cryptocurrency regulation in 2022. He says that so far there is no consensus among the deputies: someone dreams of a complete ban, and someone of legalization

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McDonald’s opens its first zero-carbon outlet. This eco-friendly restaurant is located in the UK. The building is constructed from natural and recycled materials, and electricity is generated by wind turbines and solar panels. However, not all so simple. The restaurant cannot be called completely zero: it still generates emissions associated with a large amount of beef on the menu.

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Switzerland imposes sanctions against 17 individuals and nine organizations in Belarus, the Belarusian service of Radio Liberty writes with reference to the State Secretariat for the Economy of Switzerland.

The sanctions fell on the Belarusian airline Belavia, Grodno Azot, Belorusneft, Belshina, the Tsentrkurort enterprise, the Oskartur travel agency, the Planeta hotel, the Minsk hotel, and the Service for Separate Active Activities. Also on the sanctions list are the Syrian airline Cham Wings and the VIP Grub passport and visa center located in Istanbul.

Personal sanctions are imposed on the head of the State Border Committee of Belarus Anatoly Lappo and the press secretary of the Belarusian Foreign Ministry Anatoly Glaz.

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The official trailer for the Harry Potter special has been released. In the film, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson will meet with director Chris Columbus and other notable actors from all eight Harry Potter films to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the first film in the franchise. Premiere: January 1, 2022 at the Amediatek.

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The US State Department has recommended its citizens not to travel to Ukraine because of the possible «invasion» of Russia, follows from the message of the US Embassy in Kiev.

«US citizens should be aware of reports that Russia is planning serious military action against Ukraine,» the report says.

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Erdogan promises unprecedented measures to support the national currency. Among other things, the government will compensate the owners of bank deposits in lira if the Turkish currency falls in price by an amount that exceeds the interest on deposits.

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Petro Poroshenko was summoned for interrogation on December 23 in the case of high treason and assistance to terrorist organizations due to his possible involvement in the supply of coal from the territories of Donbass not controlled by Kiev, the lawyer of the ex-president Ilya Novikov said.

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The court of the Belarusian capital recognized the information products of the telegram channel and telegram chat of the oppositionist Valery Tsepkalo as extremist materials

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Putin signed a decree on awarding state awards of the Russian Federation. The singer and composer Alexander Rosenbaum was awarded the Order of Merit for the Fatherland, II degree for his great contribution to the development of Russian culture and art, long-term fruitful activity. The Order of Merit for the Fatherland, III degree, was awarded to the artist of the Moscow Art Theater. Chekhova Nina Gulyaeva, artist of the Sovremennik theater Marina Neyolova and actor and director Vsevolod Shilovsky.

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The Verkhovna Rada, having made changes to the law on the border service of Ukraine, gave the department the right to shoot down aircrafts — violators of the state border, drones and other aircraft without warning.

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Russia and Belarus should not “play” with threats about the deployment of nuclear weapons, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said during a joint briefing with the presidents of Poland and Lithuania. So he commented on the statement of Minsk that Belarus is ready to host nuclear weapons under the threat from NATO.

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Oil company Zoltav Resources Inc. will delist from the London Stock Exchange, according to a statement on the disclosure portal. The main owner of the company is ARA Capital Limited Arkady Abramovich, the son of billionaire Roman Abramovich. This structure owns a share of 39.62%. Another 10.18% is owned by ARA Capital Holdings Limited (parent company of ARA Capital Limited). A little more than 38% is owned by Bandbear Limited by Valentina Bukhtoyarova, a former shareholder of Sibuglemet.

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The 17th International Meeting on Syria in the Astana format began in the capital of Kazakhstan. The talks opened with consultations between the Russian President’s Special Representative for Syria Alexander Lavrentyev and Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Ayman Susan.

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Russia is concerned about the actions of terrorist groups in Syria, which have intensified almost throughout the country, said Alexander Lavrentyev, the special envoy of the President of the Russian Federation for Syria.

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The Russian Defense Ministry has completed the construction of six berths in Kaspiysk for the warships of the Caspian Flotilla, TASS reports from the press service of the department.

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Washington and London have sent cybersecurity specialists to Ukraine. Writes about this The New York Times (NYT). According to the publication, specialists should help to strengthen the protection of power grids, the banking system and other important objects of the economy and the government of Ukraine.

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Gazprom has not booked Yamal-Europe for Tuesday, the pipe is to be reversed. The Kremlin called a commercial stop of gas supplies through Yamal-Europe

The cessation of the physical flow of German gas through the Yamal — Europe gas pipeline is not connected with the filling of the second string of the Nord Stream 2 project. This was stated by the presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov, reports TASS.

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In ancient Babylon, about 40 constellations were known, but the ancient Greeks identified 48. The Egyptians had their own, very complex system of the starry sky and about 55 constellations. Ancient Chinese astronomy distinguished 51 constellations. The official list of constellations was approved in 1922. Today, 88 constellations are officially recognized.

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Telegram has paid all fines in Russia. The arrears in six enforcement cases amounted to 15 million rubles. The decisions on fines were made by the Tagansky Court of Moscow after refusing to remove content prohibited in Russia — the punishment for this offense is provided for in Art. 13.41 of the Administrative Code of the Russian Federation.

Since the beginning of the year, social networks and instant messengers have received more than 200 million fines under the same article. According to the Federal Bailiff Service, Twitter owes 34.7 million rubles, Facebook — 17 million rubles, and Google — 8.5 million rubles.

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The Ministry of Industry and Trade of Russia obtained through the court the recovery of 3.3 billion rubles from the «T-platform». The company received subsidies for the development of computer technology, including those on the Russian Baikal processors. Not a single project supported by the state was implemented: finances “dissolved” in research. The founder of T-Platform, Vsevolod Opanasenko, has been under arrest since 2019, he faces 10 years behind bars.

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A bill on monthly payments in the amount of 10 thousand rubles for each family member with children under 18 years old was submitted to the State Duma of Russia. According to the document, every family member can receive money if he has Russian citizenship.

The bill was not supported by the Russian government, since it «does not comply with the principles of the budgetary system established by the Budget Code.» This is stated in the explanatory note of the government.

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The art object in Yekaterinburg by the artist Eduard Kubensky, dedicated to freedom of speech, was surrounded by a fence. Park officials said the structure «needs to be improved to make the facility completely safe.» However, there are no specific rules for regulating the safety of small architectural forms in Yekaterinburg.

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Latvia continues to purchase and transit petroleum products only under those contracts that were concluded before June 21, 2021. Due to the lack of data on the deal on the Latvian side, Latvia has blocked the import of 383 tons of oil products from Belarus, recognizing the cargo as a sanction.

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The Royal Saudi Arabian Air Force attacked the airport in Sana’a, controlled by the militants of the Shiite movement «Ansar Allah». The reason for the operation was the use of the air harbor infrastructure by the Houthis to deploy kamikaze UAVs and air defense systems. There is no data on the victims and destruction.

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Former board member of Inter RAO Karina Turcan, sentenced to 15 years in prison on charges of espionage, appealed to the Constitutional Court because of the testimony of a secret witness in her case, who in his testimony called her a spy, but refused to answer clarifying questions allegedly from — because it constitutes a state secret.

According to the Criminal Procedure Code, if a witness cannot name the source of his knowledge, then his testimony is automatically declared inadmissible, says lawyer Grigory Vaipan.

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The Accounts Chamber of Russia has prepared a training course in the Russian language for officials with recommendations “how to write easier about complex government issues,” according to its website.

“The main goal of the training course is to develop business speech competencies and increase the clarity and accessibility of official documents,” it was reported.

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The Moscow City Court left in the pre-trial detention center the rector of «Shaninka» Sergei Zuev, who has undergone several operations since his arrest. The defense’s complaint about his detention was rejected, the press service of the court told RBC.

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Employees of the medical unit of the Matrosskaya Tishina detention center cannot guarantee the life and health of the Shaninka rector, Sergei Zuev, during his stay in the isolation ward, said Aleksandr Khurudzhi, a member of the Moscow POC, who regularly visits the scientist.

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SpaceX launched the Dragon spacecraft with cargo for the ISS from the launch site at Cape Canaveral.

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The staff of the central headquarters of the All-Russian Popular Front was almost half renewed, in particular, the founder of the Wildberries company Tatyana Bakalchuk, the general director of the Russian society «Knowledge» Maxim Dreval and the chief physician of the Moscow hospital No. 40 in Kommunarka Denis Protsenko became new members of the headquarters. In total, 78 people entered the central headquarters.

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In 2021, the Russian Airborne Forces received almost 500 units of new and modernized equipment. Formed two airborne parachute regiments, said Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu

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Yandex closed the deal to buy out Uber’s stake in Yandex.Eda, Shop, Delivery and drones, the total amount of the deal amounted to $ 1 billion, the company said.

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The State Duma will ask the Central Bank of the Russian Federation to explain why almost all the gold mined on its territory is exported from the country. According to the Federal Customs Service, Russia exported 240.5 tons of gold in January-October 2021. At the same time, according to the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation, 256.5 tons of gold were mined in the country in January-September 2021.

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The third power unit of the Finnish nuclear power plant Olkiluoto has been launched in Finland. It will generate about 14% of Finland’s electricity. This was reported by the owner of the nuclear power plant, Teollisuuden Voima.

Olkiluoto NPP is located in Western Finland on the Baltic Sea coast. The station already has two operating reactors, which produce 16% of the country’s energy consumption. The construction of the third began in 2005, its cost was estimated at 9 billion euros.

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Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law extending the freeze of the funded part of pensions for a year until 2024

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Lukashenka said that Belarus prepares several people for space flight

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The State Duma adopted in the third reading a law that introduces the possibility of participating in a court session by video link and obtaining court documents through the State Services portal.

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Diplomats of a number of foreign countries will undergo state fingerprinting registration in Russia, the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

According to the report, diplomats of the following countries will undergo fingerprinting: Austria, Argentina, Afghanistan, Benin, Guinea, Denmark, Djibouti, Cameroon, Lebanon, Lithuania, Mauritania, Malaysia, Mali, Niger, Peru, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Singapore, Somalia , Sierra Leone, Thailand, Tanzania, Togo, Uruguay.

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US continues to provide defensive military aid to Kiev, last delivery last week — Department of State

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Shoigu said that the salaries of the military in 2022-2023 will be increased over and above the plan. According to the minister, in order to increase the number of contractors annually in 2021-2023, the Defense Ministry has received an additional 180.2 billion rubles.

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The State Duma adopted in the second, main reading a bill to abolish the mandatory regular technical inspection. Cars and motorcycles owned by citizens and used by them exclusively for personal purposes will be exempted from this procedure.

In addition, it is excluded to carry out «roadside inspections» — when the driver already has a diagnostic card, but the traffic police still carry out the inspection.

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Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law expanding the powers of the police. According to the amendments to the Law «On Police», police officers for arrest will have the authority to enter residential and other premises, land plots and territories, as well as cordon off buildings, residential premises and territories.

The Ministry of Internal Affairs has already prepared the procedure for the police to enter the apartments and houses of citizens in their absence and the procedure for opening the cars of citizens by the police.

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Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law to increase the monthly salary fund for assistants of senators and deputies from 300 thousand to 387 thousand rubles (for assistants of each parliamentarian, one deputy has an average of 4 to 7 assistants)

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Putin signed a number of environmental laws:

  • on fines for companies and officials of up to 1 million rubles for concealing the facts of an oil and oil product spill
  • on fines of up to 200 thousand rubles for large polluting enterprises not equipped with automatic emission control systems
  • on the establishment of a 200-meter coastal protective strip in habitats and migration of especially valuable fish

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The Russian State Duma adopted a law obliging the owners of industrial enterprises to eliminate environmental damage. 5 years before the closure of the facility, they will have to develop an appropriate plan. It was decided to extend the norms, among other things, to the owners of coal mines.

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The State Duma of Russia adopted laws on punishment (including criminal punishment) of debtors for incomplete payment of alimony. It is assumed that now unscrupulous payers will not be able to evade responsibility for non-payment by transferring insignificant alimony.

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The Russian State Duma adopted in the main reading a bill on extrajudicial blocking of sites selling fake vaccination certificates, higher education diplomas, military cards and driver’s licenses

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A group of 11 Haitian migrants seeking asylum in the United States have sued the country’s government, including President Joe Biden, for «inhuman treatment» by border guards, writes The New York Times.

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Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law on regional power

  • Governors are allowed to be elected for more than 2 consecutive terms, the legislative assemblies of the regions will be able to determine the specific number of governor’s terms;
  • Heads of regions are not allowed to be called «presidents»;
  • The term of office of the governor and regional parliaments will be 5 years (now no more than 5 years, but each region itself determines specific terms);
  • Regional regulations cannot contradict the constitution and federal laws;
  • Regional parliaments are given the opportunity to work remotely.

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The State Duma Committee on Family Issues and Deputy Ostanin are concerned that the overwhelming majority of children do not know folk tales.

61% of the respondents from 7 to 14 years old could not name a single work of Russian writers, but they are well versed in «Hollywood products». More than 70% have not read books outside the school curriculum, 61% of students want to study abroad, and 53% of adolescents would like to leave Russia for good.

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In Singapore, paper-based flexible batteries have been developed. A 4 × 4 cm sheet can power a portable fan for 45 minutes, and such a battery does not lose functionality even when deformed. For convenience, it can be cut into pieces, and at the end of its service life, it can be buried in the soil, where it will decompose in a few weeks.

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The heads of the Lithuanian Defense Ministry Arvydas Anushauskas, Latvia Artis Pabriks and Estonia Kalle Laanet agreed to develop joint multiple launch rocket systems at a meeting in Kaunas, Lithuania, BNS reports.

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