#5 - JRL 7019
Compiled by Luba Schwartzman (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Research Analyst, Center for Defense Information, Moscow office
Tuesday, January 14, 2003
- Turkmen Ambassador to Russia Khalnazar Agahanov denied reports that a criminal case has been initiated by the Turkmen security services against Vremya Novostei journalist Arkady Dubnov for his supposed ties to an opposition group that organized an assassination attempt against Turkmen President Saparmurad Niyazov on 25 November.
- Federal Border Troops Service (FPS) Director Konstantin Totsky awarded a group of journalists for their objective coverage of FPS's activity.
- The first group of Central Electoral Commission employees arrived in Grozny to help the local electoral commission organize the referendum on the republic's Constitution. Representatives of international organizations will observe the voting.
- The draft Constitution of the Republic of Chechnya will be sent to the Council of Europe this week.
- The General Council of the United Russia party will hold its second congress on 29 March. The congress will be conducted in a closed regime. Changes to the party's organization charter and the staffing of the leading positions of the Central Executive Committee of the party will be discussed.
- In Rostov-on-the-Don, 59 servicemen from the North Caucasus military district have been hospitalized with acute pneumonia.
- The M-101T airplane has been certified. It can fly at an altitude of over 7 kilometers and uses only 30 liters of fuel for 100 kilometers. The M-101-T (Myasishchev Design Bureau) is the first domestically-produced small-class airplane with an airtight passenger cabin, and will be used primarily for local flights in Siberia and Russia's northern regions.
- Two explosions shook the North Caucasus-Transcaucasus gas pipeline within nine hours.
- According to the Gallup Poll, Russia is within the top five "optimist" countries in the world, along with China, India, Mexico and the US.
- French author and the secretary of the French Academy, Maurice Druon, will visit Moscow.
- Russian parliamentarians return from the winter holiday. In January, the State Duma will review 77 draft laws.
- The 22nd session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Russia-Belarus Union opened today.
- Russian and Japanese Defense Ministers Sergei Ivanov and Shigeru Ishiba met to discuss cooperation in the military sphere. At the meeting, Ivanov voiced Russia's readiness to cooperate with the US in the creation of strategic missile defense.
- The press service of the Main Directorate of the State Automobile Inspection Service of the Ministry of Internal Affairs reported that over 33,000 people died and over 215,000 were injured in automobile accidents. This represents a 7% and 15% increase, respectively, from last year's figures. Over 22,500 of the accidents were caused by drivers who were intoxicated.
- Russian President Vladimir Putin chaired a meeting of the Council for Science and High Technology. He declared that science in Russia must be independent of government financing. He also noted the importance of the protection of intellectual property and the development of a planning system.
- A contest for a architectural plan of the new Mariinsky Theater has been announced in St. Petersburg.
- Two people were injured in an explosion at a chemicals factory in Tambov.
- According to the Russian Emergencies Ministry, 27,000 Russians are currently without heat.
- A deserter has been detained in the Volgograd Oblast.
- Two people died in a fire at a fabric factory in Moscow.
- Syrian Vice-President Abdul Halim Khaddam is coming to Moscow on a working visit.