RA’s Daily Russian News Blast – September 25, 2009


TODAY: Medvedev hints at a job swap but remains vague on 2012 election; suggests Iran sanctions as last resort; Saakashvili hopes to see Abkhazia return; new Moldova leadership to encourage Russia to remove soldiers from Transdnestr; historic moment for Japan and Russia; Kadyrov plans his legacy; police to show content of their pockets.

The main thing is to be useful to the nation’.  If only it were that simple: Medvedev has retained his vague line on the  2012 elections, but implied that a job swap with Prime Minister Putin could be on the cards.  ‘If we run out of all other options‘ then sanctions could be used on Iran, Medvedev told an audience at the University of Pennsylvania, but ‘positive incentives’ should first be applied.  He also told students that Obama’s decision on missile defense was not ‘pro-Russian’, but was pleased to see that ‘Barack Obama listened and analyzed what I said…’  The Economist has a detailed analysis of missile threats.  Mikhail Gorbachev has penned an article in the International Herald Tribune in which he affirms that there is a clear relationship, ‘for the most part ignored’ by analysts, between the scrapping of missile defense plans and a commitment to nuclear disarmament.  NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen has described his meeting with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov as ‘very constructive’.

According to the Moscow Times, Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili has told the United Nations that breakaway Abkazia will be ‘the most wonderful part of Georgia’ again in the future.  A Der Spiegel article suggesting that an EU-backed independent committee of experts will release a report apportioning most of the blame for last year’s Russia-Georgia war to Tbilisi, has been rejected by European diplomats, RFE/RL reports.  Moldova’s new pro-Western government apparently plans to ask Russia to remove its soldiers from the breakaway Transdnestr region.   Kyrgyz officials have urged for the reinstalling of the death penalty.

Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov says he has chosen his potential successor.  He has also said that he is currently engaged in mountain skirmishes with British and American intelligence agents.  For the first time in the history of relations between the two countries, Russian military officials will attend exercises of Japan’s ground self-defense forces.

From 2010 all Russia police will have to declare their incomes in an attempt to polish their somewhat besmirched image.  Recreation time:  ‘unpatriotic’ is how a sports committee member has described Mikhail Prokhorov’s leap into American basketball.

PHOTO:  Putin attending a meeting in Salekhard on September 24, 2009 on the development of gas deposits on Yamal Peninsula.  (Alexei Druzhinin / RIA-Novosti / AP)