CUSTOMS WILL BE EQUIPPED WITH MACHINE-GUNS

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CUSTOMS WILL BE EQUIPPED WITH MACHINE-GUNS

Izvestia, May 8, 2002, p. 2

The customs service will step up its battle against illegal fishing in Russian waters. With this purpose, customs vessels will be equipped with large-caliber machine guns. This was announced yesterday by Mikhail Mos, deputy commander of the Far Eastern customs administration, in the lead-up to customs day, to be celebrated on May 12.

KURSK’S FIRST COMPARTMENT WILL BE RAISED PRO FORMA

Izvestia, May 8, 2002, p. 2

The Nerpa shipyard (Snezhnogorsk, Murmansk region) started preparatory work yesterday aimed at dismantling the Kursk nuclear submarine. Meanwhile, Igor Spassky, head of the Rubin Design Bureau, told us that experts who have been working on establishing the cause of the disaster have already reached an unambiguous conclusion. However, this is not yet considered official.

“The Rubin Design Bureau and the First Central Marine Institute have reached a more or less coordinated position on one theory,” Spassky told us. “We, specialists and scientists, have already come to an understanding and will report to the governmental commission about the entire process that took place aboard the submarine.”

Although Spassky did not name the cause of the disaster, it is clear that the matter most likely concerns the so-called torpedo theory about the sinking of the submarine.

RUSSIAN T.V. CHANNEL MAY PASS TO A UKRAINIAN MAGNATE

Izvestia, May 8, 2002, p. 3

Ukrainian TV magnate Oleksandr Rodnyansky, who created Ukraine’s highest-rating TV channel, 1+1, has received his third offer to head a Russian TV company. In the past, he had been invited to become the chief executive of the NTV and ORT networks. Now he is being given STS. Rodnyansky switched to contacts with the STS channel after the collapse of TV-6. He may now become the head of this profitable television channel.

THE VATICAN BANS ORTHODOX SEMINARIANS FROM CATHOLIC KNOWLEDGE

Izvestia, May 8, 2002, p. 3

The Catholic Church will stop teaching Russian Orthodox seminarians at the Vatican’s educational institutions. Some of our seminarians have already returned home, and the rest will follow before long. Catholic seminarians and priests who had been studying at Russian Orthodox educational institutions returned home even earlier. Thus, the conflict which arose because four Catholic dioceses had been set up in Russia has spread to affect one of the most ancient areas of theological contacts between the Russian Orthodox Church and the Catholic Church.

The secret decision to bar Orthodox seminarians from access to the Vatican’s richest libraries, catalogues, and knowledge accumulated at the best Catholic educational institutions was made after a small delegation of the Russian Orthodox Church had visited Rome. The visit’s main objective was to inform the senior authorities of the Roman Catholic Church of the official position of the Moscow Patriarchate on the restructuring of administrations – temporary spiritual associations of Catholics on Russian territory – into permanent dioceses. The Russian Orthodox Church took a very negative view of this decision, considering this an incursion into its internal affairs, on its own canonical territory.

Apparently, meetings and summits have not improved relations between the two Churches.

THE RUSSIANS ARE HERE!

Izvestia, May 8, 2002, p. 3

A Russian citizen has been awarded 3,000 euros by a court in Strasbourg.

The historic decision in a lawsuit filed by a Russian citizen was made at the European Court of Human Rights.

The first Russian citizen to win a case against his own country is Anatoly Burdov, from the town of Shakhty. The court ruled that the Russian government had violated his rights.

Burdov participated in the clean-up operation at Chernobyl. In 1991, he was granted the right to compensation for the damage done to his health during the job at Chernobyl. However, he did not actually receive the compensation. In 1997, Burdov filed a lawsuit against the Shakhty social security agencies. The lengthy trial resulted in a decision to pay Burdov 3,011.36 rubles a month, the sum to be indexed in future. However, he did not receive this money either, because of funding shortages. Then Burdov took his case to the European Court of Human Rights, which has ruled that a state may not use “funding shortages” as an excuse not to pay its debts.

The judges came to a unanimous conclusion: the case of Burdov violates a number of provisions of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights. They ruled that the plaintiff should receive 3,000 euros in compensation.

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