Luzhkov: Dirt that I touch when I work on a combine is cleaner than Medvedev’s politics

BBC Russian Service

Former Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov gave an interview to the Russian Service of the BBC in London. He refused to comment on the candidates running for mayor but shared his impressions about the upcoming election.

He also spoke about his new occupation as a combine operator and about complications with a British visa.

Talking to Yuri Luzhkov was BBC Russian Service correspondent Oleg Antonenko. Continue reading

Russian banker with an English palace and a dangerous feud

The Telegraph

Andrey and Tatiana
He is the billionaire banker who left Russia for Britain just hours before he could be detained. Granted political asylum in February – to the fury of President Vladimir Putin – Andrey Borodin has settled in the UK, taking up residence with his wife and daughter in Britain’s most expensive home.

Now, in his first face-to-face interview since he arrived in March 2011, the former president of the Bank of Moscow has warned David Cameron to beware of the Russian leader. Continue reading

Only VTB earns money by using VTB


The VTB bank has closed a deal where it sold 24 per cent of the shares of an additional emission. The shares were offered to investors at a 10-per cent discount as compared to the exchange price, which fact attracted a broad range of participants even in spite of the fact that the shares were traded exclusively on the Moscow Stock Exchange.

Active purchases were also stimulated by the bank’s sale of shares in its capital at extremely low coefficients. Thus, the capitalisation to the bank’s own capital ratio (p/bv) amounted to 0.62, whereas in VTB’s principal rival – Sberbank – it is 1.25 (you may say that investors value Sberbank 100 per cent higher than they do VTB). Continue reading

Oppositionist Konstantin Lebedev says video from “Anatomy of Protest 2″ is genuine


Konstantin Lebedev, an activist of the Left Front, has confirmed that the video of the meeting of Russian oppositionists with the Georgian politician Givi Targamadze that formed part of Anatomy of Protest 2, an NTV documentary, is genuine. Lebedev’s lawyer Valery Lavrov has said that his client has recognised that the people in the video “indeed were at that time in that place” and “the conversation in the video did take place.” Continue reading

Why Britain Has Granted Asylum to Banker Borodin

BBC Russian Service

The British Home Office denies political asylum to 99 per cent of the seekers, BBC lawyers say; therefore, Andrei Borodin had to produce solid proofs of his having been pressured politically in Russia.

It became known on Friday that Andrei Borodin, former head of the Bank of Moscow, had received political asylum in Great Britain. Earlier, the British office would deny that and Borodin himself would refuse to comment on his status. Continue reading

A Magnitsky law for Europe

Financial Times

The US statute is a pro-Russian, not anti-Russian, act

Even by its own recent standards, Moscow’s response to the US Magnitsky law, which bars Russian officials accused of human rights violations from the US, has been ugly. President Vladimir Putin last week signed into law a ban on US citizens adopting Russian children. In effect, this strands thousands of Russia’s most vulnerable citizens in often appalling orphanages, as hostages to US-Russian relations. Continue reading