Russia

RUSSIA: Workers Ordered To Stay Home Until April 30

The Associated Press reports: President Vladimir Putin on Thursday ordered most Russians to stay off work until the end of the month as part of a partial industrial shutdown to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Speaking in a televised address to the nation on Thursday, Putin said he was extending the non-working policy he ordered earlier for this week …

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RUSSIA: Lawmakers Approve Up To Five Year Prison Sentence For Disputing Kremlin’s Coronavirus Numbers

The Associated Press reports: On Tuesday, Russian lawmakers approved fines of up to $25,000 and prison terms of up to five years for anyone who spreads what is deemed to be false information. Media outlets will be fined up to $127,000 if they disseminate disinformation about the outbreak. Lawmakers rushed the bill through all three readings in just one day …

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Russia To Close Borders Tomorrow To Curb Coronavirus

The Moscow Times reports: Russia will close all border crossings on March 30, the government said late on Saturday, tightening restrictions after the country reported its biggest one-day rise in new coronavirus cases. The authorities said they so far had recorded 1,264 confirmed cases, an increase of 228 in 24 hours, and ordered that all vehicle, rail and pedestrian checkpoints, …

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RUSSIA: Putin Dons Hazmat Suit For Hospital Visit

Reuters reports: The mayor of Moscow told President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday that the number of coronavirus cases in the Russian capital far exceeded the official figures, as Putin donned a protective suit and respirator to visit a hospital. The comments by Sergei Sobyanin, a close ally of Putin, were authorities’ strongest indcation yet that they do not have a …

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Trump’s Intel Chief To Attend Russian Victory Parade

Reuters reports: U.S. National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien will travel to Moscow to attend Russia’s World War Two Victory Day celebrations in May, U.S. ambassador John Sullivan said on Thursday. President Vladimir Putin presides over an annual parade on May 9 to commemorate the Soviet Union’s World War Two victory over Nazi Germany and uses the occasion to show off …

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REPORT: Russia’s Wealthy Are Hoarding Ventilators

The Moscow Times reports: The Moscow Times has found evidence, based on dozens of interviews, that Russia’s rich are setting up makeshift clinics in their own homes to ensure they can have better care than the masses if they get infected. And in what may have severe ramifications down the road for Russia’s battle against the coronavirus, they are buying …

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KANSAS: GOP Official Shrugs Off Local Virus Threat Because There Aren’t A Lot Of Chinese People There

From the editorial board of the Kansas City Star: The chairman of the Riley County Commissioners suggested this week that the global coronavirus pandemic is not a problem locally because unlike in Italy, there are not a lot of Chinese people living in central Kansas, according to two other officials who attended the meeting Wednesday night. Before we go any …

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Russia Targets West With Coronavirus Disinformation

Axios reports: Russia is already spreading misinformation about the coronavirus throughout the West, according to digital forensics experts and government officials. The most effective misinformation plays into existing fears, especially around health, safety and well-being. Russia often takes advantage of real-world health crises to sow discord among Americans. A document sent to European lawmakers Monday by European Union officials asserts …

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Russian Lawmakers Vote To Reset Putin’s Terms To Zero

Reuters reports: Constitutional changes allowing Vladimir Putin to run for president again in 2024 sailed through Russia’s lower house of parliament on Wednesday, opening the way for him to potentially stay in power until 2036. The 450-seat State Duma, the lower house of parliament, on Wednesday voted in favor of the change, along with other amendments to the constitution, by …

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Putin Backs Ploy To Keep Him In Power Until 2036

The New York Times reports: President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia said on Tuesday that he would support legislation that would allow him to run for a fifth term as president in 2024. The proposal, unexpectedly floated by a lawmaker at a session of Russia’s lower house of Parliament on Tuesday, would allow Mr. Putin — who is 67 years …

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New Streaming App Is Actually Russian Propaganda

The Daily Beast reports: Russian propagandists have a new trick: Pushing a “news” app that poses as a “free streaming service,” but which is linked directly to the Russian propaganda outlet RT. Of course, the app doesn’t bother to disclose this. Dubbed “Portable.TV,” the new app went live a few months ago, according to its Apple Store history. Billing itself …

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Trump’s Ex-Acting AG: Russia Is Interfering Again

CNN reports: Former acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker warned Russia is “trying to interfere in 2020” during remarks at the Oxford Union in the UK on Friday, remarks that came after it was revealed that a Capitol Hill briefing on Russia’s continued election interference had angered President Donald Trump. CNN has obtained a recording of Whitaker’s remarks. Whitaker, who replaced …

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Feds Brief Sanders That Russian Trolls Are Helping Him, Sanders Warns Putin To “Stay Out” Of US Elections

The Washington Post reports: U.S. officials have told Sen. Bernie Sanders that Russia is attempting to help his presidential campaign as part of an effort to interfere with the Democratic contest, according to people familiar with the matter. President Trump and lawmakers on Capitol Hill have also been informed about the Russian assistance to the Vermont senator, according to people …

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Kremlin Denies “Paranoid” Report On Helping Trump

Reuters reports: The Kremlin said on Friday that allegations from U.S. intelligence officials that Russia is interfering in the 2020 election campaign and trying to boost President Donald Trump’s re-election chances are false and the result of paranoia. A person familiar with the matter said on Thursday that U.S. intelligence officials had told U.S. lawmakers last week that Russia was …

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Lawmakers Warned: Russia Is Helping Trump Again

The New York Times reports: Intelligence officials warned House lawmakers last week that Russia was interfering in the 2020 campaign to try to get President Trump re-elected, five people familiar with the matter said, in a disclosure that angered Mr. Trump, who complained that Democrats would use it against him. The day after the Feb. 13 briefing to lawmakers, Mr. …

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Putin Backs Constitutional Ban On Same-Sex Marriage

Reuters reports: President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday Russia would not legalize gay marriage as long as he was in the Kremlin. He made clear he would not allow the traditional notion of mother and father to be subverted. “As far as ‘parent number 1’ and ‘parent number 2’ goes, I’ve already spoken publicly about this and I’ll repeat it …

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Trump Seeks Deep Cut To Russian Deterrence Budget

The Associated Press reports: President Donald Trump has proposed a 25 percent cut to the signature military fund designed to offset Russian aggression in Eastern Europe, according to the Defense Department’s budget documents unveiled Monday. Budget proposals for fiscal 2021 released Monday afternoon call for $4.5 billion for the European Deterrence Initiative, a fund started by the Obama administration in …

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Putin Critic Found With Slit Throat In French Hotel

The Insider reports: French police believe that the killing of a blogger from the disputed Russian region of Chechnya in a French hotel room last week was “politically motivated,” a French police official briefed on the case said. The official said the police were now hunting for the blogger’s traveling companion, who disappeared shortly after the killing. French investigators wish …

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Russian Party Leader Offers To Fly Putin To Mar-A-Lago To “Raise Glass To Your Success” Over The Democrats

Politico reports: The leader of Russia’s pro-nationalist Liberal Democratic Party, Vladimir Zhirinovsky, congratulated President Trump for his acquittal in the Senate and suggested that he and members of his party, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, visit Trump’s Florida estate to “raise glass to your success.” Zhirinovsky went on to denounce House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) as well as Sen. Mitt …

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Moscow Jury Acquits Confessed Killer Of Gay Man

Radio Free Europe reports: Artyom Lapov, a lawyer from the gay rights group Stimul, said on February 7 that jurors at the trial at the Basmanny district court found Anton Berezhnoi not guilty of murder in the beating of Roman Yedalov, instead convicting him of a lesser charge of assault. Investigators say Berezhnoi attacked Yedalov and his partner, Yevgeny Yefimov, …

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