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Nemtsov Murder Suspect Blows Himself Up

Suspect charged in killing is said to have confessed

(Newser) - Well, that seems settled: Not only has Russia charged two and detained three others in the murder of opposition figure Boris Nemtsov, but one of those charged has apparently confessed. And a sixth suspect blew himself up last night when police approached his apartment in Chechnya, reports Interfax via the... More »

Russia Mad at Putin's 'I Could Take Kiev in 2 Weeks' Leak

Because it leaked, not because he didn't say it

(Newser) - Vladmir Putin supposedly told the head of the European Commission in a private phone call that "if I wanted to, I could take Kiev in two weeks," reports La Repubblica via the New York Times . The Kremlin hit back today, saying that even if Putin did say that,... More »

UK Opens Inquiry in Death of Poisoned Ex-KGB Spy

Alexander Litvinenko's widow 'delighted;' more bad news for Russia

(Newser) - The widow of former KGB spy Alexander Litvinenko has been pressing the UK government for nearly eight years to investigate his death. Today, Marina Litvinenko got her wish: Home Secretary Theresa May announced that London is opening an official inquiry into whether Russia was behind her husband’s fatal poisoning... More »

Kremlin's Anti-Leak Strategy: Typewriters?

Security officials order $15K worth of low-tech machines

(Newser) - With leaks and surveillance concerns flooding the international community, Russia's got a not-so-high-tech defense system: The Kremlin is using typewriters. Security officials are set to spend more than $15,000 on the machines, says an insider. Following news of WikiLeaks, Edward Snowden, and "reports about Dmitry Medvedev being... More »

Pussy Riot Guilty, Gets 2 Years

Judge finds three band members guilty of hooliganism

(Newser) - A Russian judge today found three members of punk band Pussy Riot guilty of hooliganism driven by "religious hatred and enmity" and sentenced them to two years in prison, Reuters reports. Prosecutors had been seeking three years. The three were arrested in March after performing an anti-Putin "punk... More »

Putin Will Run for President: Medvedev Stepping Aside

He will likely lead Russia through 2024

(Newser) - He wasn't honing his image as an oh-so-buff Renaissance man for nothing: Vladimir Putin will again run for president in Russia next year, and the odds are that he will lead the nation through 2024, reports the Guardian . Current President Dmitry Medvedev ended months of Kremlin speculation today with... More »

Russia Votes on Burying Lenin

Poll asks whether he should be taken from Red Square and buried

(Newser) - The body of Vladimir Lenin has been on public display at a mausoleum in Moscow's Red Square since he died in 1924. With the Soviet Union now a 20-year-old memory, many wonder if perhaps it's time to retire the socialist leader's remains to a cemetery. To that end, the pro-Kremlin... More »

Medvedev Rips Into Pol: No Tweeting!

Tweet-happy official immediately blames another for squealing

(Newser) - Dmitry Medvedev is mod enough to have a vlog, but that didn't stop President Crankypants from slamming a lawmaker who was busily tweeting during a Kremlin meeting yesterday. "There's Nikita Yurievich Belykh sitting there and writing in Twitter right from the State Council session," Medvedev sniped. "Apparently,... More »

'Grand Prince of All Russia' Claims Ownership of Kremlin

Rurik descendant sues to get historic complex back

(Newser) - The descendants of a dynasty that ruled Russia for 600 years are suing for ownership of the Kremlin, AOL News reports. The claim is being made by Valery Kubarev, a man who can trace his family back to the Rurik dynasty, and is in fact its designated "Grand Prince... More »

Twitter Imposter Mocks Medvedev

'Kermlin Russia' dodges country's media crackdown

(Newser) - Dmitri Medvedev has discovered one of the great joys of Twitter: the satirical impersonator account. Just days after the Russian president sent his first dispatch from his @KremlinRussia page, another account—called @KermlinRussia —is delivering mocking responses to his dispatches. One, for example, poked fun at his attempts to... More »

Female Suicide Bombers Kill 37 in Moscow Subway

Two female suicide bombers hit Moscow Metro in rush hour

(Newser) - Two explosions in Moscow's subway system killed at least 37 people at the height of rush hour this morning. The city's mayor says both explosions were caused by female suicide bombers who blew themselves up as trains pulled into busy stations, the AP reports, and security officials said the bombers... More »

Russians Float Swearing Ban

Anti-vice campaign would make cursing cost

(Newser) - As part of a Kremlin-backed push to clean up Russia's morals, a group of senators is looking into a country-wide swearing ban. The proposed rule is inspired by the Russian city of Belgorod, where police already issue on-the-spot fines for bad language. Utter a swear in this clean-talking town and... More »

Putin Hints He'll Run for President Again

The Russian prime minister will 'think about it' before 2012 vote

(Newser) - Vladimir Putin is moving closer to retaking the Russian presidency. In a question-and-answer session with the Russian public, a student asked the prime minister whether he'd like to be president again. "I will think about it," Putin said, adding that "there's still plenty of time" before the... More »

Russia Says It Won't Deploy Missiles Near Poland

Kremlin also criticizes Iran's president for denying Holocaust

(Newser) - Russia said today it will scrap a plan to deploy missiles near Poland since Washington has dumped a planned missile shield in Eastern Europe. It also harshly criticized Iran's president for new comments denying the Holocaust. Neither move, however, represented ceding any significant ground. A plan to place Iskander missiles... More »

Putin Praises US for Ditching Missile Shield

But Moscow may not support nuclear sanctions against Iran

(Newser) - In a development sure to further tick off President Obama's critics on the right, Vladimir Putin says he's quite pleased with the decision to scrap an American missile-defense system in Eastern Europe, the New York Times reports. “I very much hope that this correct and brave decision will be... More »

Putin Eyes Return to Russian Presidency

Prime minister says he and Medvedev will decide who gets to run in 2012

(Newser) - Vladimir Putin hinted yesterday that current Russian President Dmitry Medvedev is just keeping his seat warm for him until he can return to his old job in 2012, the Financial Times reports. The prime minister—barred by the constitution from seeking a third consecutive term as president last year—said... More »

Novel About Corruption May Be Kremlin Official's Work

Close to Zero portrays bribes, fraud as commonplace in contemporary Russia

(Newser) - A novel about a publisher navigating Russia’s complex web of political favors and payoffs may have been written by a top Kremlin official, the Moscow Times reports. Sources at Russky Pioner magazine, which published excerpts of Close to Zero before its release last month, say Vladislav Surkov, a powerful... More »

Putin Trip Is Tough-Guy Photo Op

Official pics show Russian PM swimming, riding bareback in Siberia

(Newser) - Vladimir Putin spent his vacation in southern Siberia swimming, climbing trees, and riding a horse bareback—all while shirtless. Though state news agencies portrayed the Russian prime minister’s trip as a vacation, the series of tough-guy photographs that emerged make it hard not to think he had a motive... More »

'What I Did Over Summer Break,' by Sasha, Malia

From Kremlin to Paris and slave port, first kids get quite an education

(Newser) - Sasha and Malia Obama might not be in school, but their summer vacation has been anything but lazy—the girls have seen the Eiffel Tower, the Kremlin, and Monticello as part of what the first lady calls “Camp Obama." And though there’s been plenty of fun, such... More »

Russia Orders Retrial in Journalist's Murder

Supreme Court throws out acquittals in Politkovskaya case

(Newser) - Russia's Supreme Court has overturned the acquittals of three men in the murder of crusading journalist Anna Politkovskaya, and ordered a retrial, reports the BBC. Prosecutors claimed that judicial irregularities and misinformation led to an improper verdict, and Politkovskaya's newspaper colleagues have accused the police of shoddy work. Despite international... More »

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