9 December 2012, 15:42

Putin`s associates meet in Moscow

Putin`s associates meet in Moscow

A two-day conference of President Putin`s closest associates winds up in Moscow. The agenda  focused on Putin`s campaign pledges.

On December 9, the trustees met members of the presidential administration and several ministers. Vladimir Putin will attend the conference on Monday.

His spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that every negotiation session focuses on one of the promises given by Mr. Putin during his election campaign.

Magnitsky counter-list in the offing

Head of the National Security Council Nikolai Patrushev has confirmed Russian plans to respond in kind to what is known as America’s ‘Magnitsky list’.

Speaking on behalf of the Kremlin in Moscow on Sunday, he said the list will include US nationals involved in human rights abuse in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and the prison camp at Guantanamo Bay.

Last Thursday, the US Senate passed a bill to impose financial and travel sanctions on Russian officials with alleged involvement in the prison death of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky in 2009.

Russia against repeat of Libyan scenario in Syria

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov says that Russia will try not to let the Libyan scenario repeat in Syria. Mr. Lavrov said this during a meeting between President Putin’s authorized representatives, the Russian government’s members and MPs.

He expressed regret that Russia’s Western partners have deviated from the Geneva agreements on Syria and are trying to make President Assad resign. Russia does not insist that Syria should or should not be ruled by any concrete person, Mr. Lavrov said.

In Libya, anti-government demonstrations started in February 2011. Next month, the UN Security Council sanctioned an interference of Western countries in the Libyan conflict with force, under a pretext that the Libyan regime was suppressing the opposition. This allowed NATO to deliver airstrikes on Libya. As a result, the Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi was ousted and killed.

Russia’s GDP – good results

Russia’s Ministry of Economic Development is expecting that the results of the outgoing year will show a growth of the country’s GDP by 3.5% to 3.6%.

This is what the ministry’s head Andrey Belousov said at a meeting between President Putin’s authorized representatives and representatives of the legislative and the executive power.

Mr. Belousov added that in the next year, he expects the GDP’s growth by nearly 4%.

“If the figure will be smaller, it will be hard for Russia to maintain a balance between the people’s growing demands and the abilities of the industry,” the minister said. “However, the level which we should reach in the next few years is 5%.”

Peskov explains why protest moods rise

The Kremlin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov has blamed rising protest moods in Russia on the fast-growing living standards among a significant portion of society and on the inefficiency of some state mechanisms.

He acknowledged that the poor accounted for about a quarter of the population.

The figure seems awfully high, he said, yet it is far lower than it used to be due to an unprecedented breakthrough achieved over the past decade. But as people grew wealthier, they also became less satisfied because they want to participate in state governing processes.

“The state, being slow-moving and conservative by nature, is unable to catch up with people’s development. And so, people grew displeased and came to Bolotnaya. What’s Bolotnaya? Everyone has his own small reason to be dissatisfied. Some complain that there are no kindergartens, others are unhappy about bribe extortion, still others complain about poor school education, or that they were nagged by traffic police inspectors. The state provides low-quality services,” Peskov explained.

Moscow will retaliate over Magnitsky Act - Kremlin aide

Moscow will take retaliatory measures over the so-called Magnitsky bill passed by the U.S. Congress, presidential aide Yuri Ushakov announced on Sunday.

He described the bill, passed this week, as an “extremely unfriendly move”.

“It’s most unpleasant that Russia is being forced to retaliate,” he said.

Earlier, the U.S. Senators approved the Magnitsky Act that slaps visa sanctions against Russians who are allegedly involved in human rights violations.

The bill went to President Barack Obama for signing.

Voice of Russia, RIA, TASS

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