TODAY: Polish memorial shunned by former President’s twin brother, blaming Russia, plaque causes further row; Day of Wrath arrests; Russia wants joint role in missile defense; FSB suggestion to limit Skype and Gmail dismissed; Novaya Gazeta web attack; Kasparov on Bukovsky; Voina wins art prize; snow delays flights.
Poland held a memorial yesterday to mark the plane crash last year that killed President Lech Kaczynski (RFE/RL
has details and speech soundbites, and the BBC has some video footage
), as the former President’s twin brother shunned the event
, blaming Moscow and Prime Minister Donald Tusk for the crash. ‘A recent poll shows that a majority of Poles feel there has still not been an adequate explanation of what happened.
‘ President Bronislaw Komorowski is in Russia today for a further commemoration event
. A new row has emerged after Moscow apparently changed a plaque
marking the event in Smolensk to remove a reference to the Katyn massacre (‘Moscow’s efforts to cover up responsibility for the massacre have long been a major irritant in relations between Poland and Russia
‘). Day of Wrath protests
in Moscow saw 250 protesters gathering (click for video
), with ‘about a dozen
‘ of them detained. Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov says that Russia will join the U.S.’ planned missile shield in exchange for a joint, ‘red-button push to start
‘ role in operating it.
An FSB official suggested that Skype, Gmail and Hotmail be banned in Russia over the weekend, calling them a potential threat to security, but quickly backed down
. Although it’s worth noting that, according to a Google spokesperson, ‘the FSB has never filed a request for information about users. By contrast, U.S. security services filed more than 4,200 data requests last year, and 83 percent of them were granted.
‘ Novaya Gazeta’s website suffered a denial-of-service attack
last week, similar to the one that took down LiveJournal days prior, with the newspaper’s editor linking the attack with its ‘alternative points of view
‘. A U.S. State Department survey counted Russia in the top three E.U. countries with the worst human rights record
. Garry Kasparov
comments on the peculiar attempt by rights advocate Vladimir Bukovsky that Mikhail Gorbachev be arrested for suppressing protests in Tbilisi, Baku and Vilnius in 1989.
PHOTO: Russian President Dmitry Medvedev’s wife Svetlana, left, takes part in a flower-laying ceremony outside the Polish embassy to mark the one-year anniversary of the Polish presidential plane crash in Moscow, Sunday, April 10, 2011. (AP Photo/RIA Novosti, Dmitry Astakhov, Presidential Press Service)