Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

Archive for January 2nd, 2010

New Law Trying To Break Russia’s Vodka Dependence – Brave Decision

Posted by Info on 02/01/2010

Russians drink on average about 18 litres (32 pints) of pure alcohol a year.
Last year, when Mr Medvedev kick-started his campaign, he called Russia’s alcohol problem a “national disgrace” and said he was determined to cut that figure by a quarter by 2012.

But combating the consumption of what most Russians consider to be their national drink is a brave political move considering the lack of success his predecessors have had.

The last time anyone tried it was 24 years ago, when Russia was part of the Soviet Union. Then, Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev drastically cut vodka production and did not allow it to be sold before 2pm.Perfume was also not to be sold before midday as people were starting to drink that.

Officially, lives were saved and alcoholism dropped, but Soviet state revenues took a massive hit and so did Mr Gorbachev’s popularity.

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Russia’s Putin and Medvedev In New Year Cartoon – Be Careful !

Posted by Info on 02/01/2010

Animated figures of Russia’s president and prime minister are shown dancing in Moscow’s Red Square and singing a duet about 2009. President Medvedev is depicted playing an accordion while Mr Putin beats a tambourine against his bottom.
Channel One television broadcast the cartoon after Mr Medvedev’s official new year address.

The two-and-a-half-minute cartoon, with surprisingly true-to-life voices, has surprised Russians used to serious depictions of their leaders.
The duet jauntily refers to events in the past year, such as the failed attempt by a consortium including Russian bank Sberbank to buy Opel from General Motors, and the construction of Russia’s Nord Stream gas pipeline.

With fireworks exploding above the Moscow skyline in the background, Mr Medvedev’s character performs a dainty leap for which he is congratulated by the prime minister, who is then lauded for his own little jump.

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Medvedev: Pakistan Can Rely On Russia To Help Fight Terrorism

Posted by Info on 02/01/2010

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has sent his condolences to the people of Pakistan after a deadly attack that claimed at least 95 lives.
Medvedev: “Russia was shocked to learn about a new crime committed by extremists – a bloody terrorist act during a volleyball game in the town of Lakki Marwat. In Russia we are perturbed by the latest crimes of terrorists, which have the same features anywhere in the world – unlimited cruelty and complete disregard for human lives sacrificed for their sordid goals.”

Recently Pakistan has seen a series of suicide bombings in Karachi, Peshawar, Rawalpindi and Muzaffarabad. The rise in the number of deadly attacks is believed to be orchestrated by Islamic fundamentalists as a response to military operations in the South Waziristan province, on the border with Afghanistan, where Taliban strongholds are concentrated.

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Artist Detained in Moscow During Public Exhibition Cared About Political Prisoners

Posted by Info on 02/01/2010

Igor Cherchenko was detained after opening an exhibition of his works on Moscow’s Triumfalnaya Square entitled “My Northern Country” .

Cherchenko is not the first artist arrested in Russia while attempting to display his work. Aleksander Shchendov was detained and threatened by police when he tried to display a collage of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin in a dress in Voronezh last June. Artem Loskutov, a leader of the underground art movement in Novosibirsk, was detained in May and charged with political extremism, as well as other charges he asserts are false.

Born in the Russian city of Vitebsk in 1973, Cherchenko has lived in Israel since 1990. He has frequently taken part in activist demonstrations with the aim of attracting attention toward political imprisonment. In December 2005, he chained himself to the gates of the Russian embassy in Tel Aviv to demand the release of political prisoners in Russia. The embassy later filed a complaint against the artist, accusing him of “the violation of state borders.”

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Kazakhstan Takes Over OSCE Chair

Posted by Info on 02/01/2010

ASTANA, 1 January 2010 – Kazakhstan took over the Chairmanship of the OSCE and reaffirmed its commitment to uphold the fundamental principles and values of the Organization, to proceed according to the interests of all participating States and to strengthen the role of the OSCE as a significant platform for dialogue contributing to security in the wider Eurasian space.

Kazakhstan is the first Central Asian and former Soviet State to chair the Organization.

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