RA’s Daily Russian News Blast – May 8, 2009

r.jpegTODAY: Russia-US relations will not derailed by Georgia events says Washington; Lavrov suggests humanitarian motives for action in Georgia; Eastern Partnership deal made; Lebedev’s Novaya Gazeta pay suspension scrutinized; Amnesty disappointed with human rights in Medvedev’s first year

Hillary Clinton reportedly has no interest in dwelling upon the Georgia issue at her meeting with Sergei Lavrov, saying, ‘we want to normalize the relationship and raise it to a new level’.  President Obama is apparently ‘hopeful’ about improved relations.  Russian State Duma speaker Boris Gryzlov has confirmed that Russia will take part in a session of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, saying ‘we want to continue the dialogue’.  Sergei Lavrov has defended Russia’s actions in Georgia, claiming, ‘we intervened . . . not to win geopolitical scores, but to save human lives.  The Other Russia examines the murky details of the failed ‘coup’ in Georgia.  President Medvedev has appealed to Georgian World War Two veterans that a common historical heritage’ could help foster better relations between the two countries.

An agreement has been met at the Eastern Partnership summit.  The Telegraph suggests that the deal has been tempered, amidst EU fears about fomenting internal opposition in the individual states.  Sergei Lavrov has expressed his misgivings: ‘there are those who may wish to present the invited participants with the choice: either you are with Russia, or with the European Union.   

Have Medvedev’s ‘four I’s’ been dotted in his first year? asks the Moscow Times.  The Guardian is unforgiving: ‘Medvedev is a fake’.  Read a voxpop on the President here; Bloomberg has a video report.  Amnesty International is unimpressed with Medvedev’s human rights record.  Putin’s successor has marked his one-year anniversary by pledging to continue the fight against corruption.  

The head of the OSCE’s election monitoring body has said that relations with Russia are ‘fairly good’ despite suggestions of bias reigning in Moscow.  The number of crimes being committed by police is on the up, new statistics say.  Yesterday reports emerged that Alexander Lebedev suspended pay of his Novaya Gazeta staff for two months; today the Guardian examines the week’-long salary suspension.  ‘There have never been gay parades in Moscow, and there never will be, says a Moscow City Hall spokesman.  Tomorrow will tell.

PHOTO: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton addresses a reporter’s question as she holds a news conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov at the State Department in Washington, May 7, 2009.  (REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)