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[2006-05-25] You won’t find any prices in dollars or euros in Russia soon
(Itar-Tass) - The State Duma on Wednesday passed the first reading of a draft law according to which all price tags for goods, works and services in Russia have to be only in roubles, not in a foreign currency. “Basically this must lead to a ban on consumer information about the price of goods in foreign currencies or conventional units,” lawmakers said. The document also amends advertising and mass media laws by imposing a ban on the use in mass media and on the Internet of information about the price of goods and sums of transactions, as well as budget parameters in foreign currencies. [...]
[2006-05-25] Staying in Moscow: Visitors' Point of View
/Themoscowtimes.com/ Lachlan Ayres, 27, of Britain, said he and his parents were staying in a flat near Chistiye Prudy for $79 a night. Ayres: "My mother found it on the Internet. The hot shower isn't very good, the water is not very hot, but otherwise it is good." Ildiko Arndt, 28, and Jesse Smith, 28, of the United States, said they were staying in the dormitory of the Moscow Art Theater School at Belorusskaya for 45 euros ($57) a night. Arndt: "If we could, we would stay there again, but if my sister is not there we are not sure we will have access to it. Otherwise we are not sure we co [...]
[2006-05-25] Russian TrafficPolice May Play a New Card
By Masha Gessen (The Moscow Times) Every couple of years, another item is added to the number of documents you have to hand to the traffic police if you are pulled over. It used to be your license and registration. Then people stopped leaving their technical-inspection cards on the windshield for fear they would get stolen and started handing them out the window as well. Then they added the mandatory liability insurance policy. Now, it seems, you may have to add a debit card. Some people already place a bill -- 100, 500, or 1,000 rubles, depending on the nature of the violation and the make [...]
[2006-05-24] Army service threatens talented young Russian men
(Moscowtimes) Denis Savin, 22, is one of the Bolshoi Theater ballet's rising stars, with several solo parts and a prestigious Golden Mask Award nomination to his name. By the ripe old age of 24, if the army has its way, his career could end. Savin, with fellow dancers, violinists, pianists and other young talents, could be drafted if the State Duma adopts a legislative package this summer cutting service exemptions for talented artists. The bill is part of the Defense Ministry's effort to expand its pool of eligible draftees by 2008, when mandatory service will be cut to one year from two y [...]
[2006-05-24] Fifth Ukrainian city grants regional status to the Russian language
(RIA Novosti, Olga Bernatskaya) - Dnipropetrovsk, a major industrial city in Ukraine's eastern region, has made Russian a regional language, a municipal council spokesman said Wednesday. "The decision was backed by 77 votes out of 107," the spokesman said. Four other cities in largely Russian-speaking areas in the country's east and south have passed similar resolutions, which have sparked nationwide debate over the status of Russian and calls from the predominantly Ukrainian-speaking west of the country for more measures to protect the Ukrainian language. City Prosecutor Mykola Gornosta [...]
[2006-05-24] "Dollar," euro" are banned words for Russian officials
(RIA Novosti) - Russia's lower house of parliament passed in first reading Wednesday a bill that would ban lawmakers and other officials from using the terms "dollar" and "euro" in domestic economic debates. "When speaking in public, including in the mass media, members of the government must not use foreign currency terms ... to give information about the cost of goods, work, services, property, the sums of closed deals, budget indexes at any level of the Russian budget system, state and municipal borrowings, or state and municipal debts," the bill said. With 300 votes needed, the bill wa [...]
[2006-05-24] Foreign currency exchange rates to the ruble as fixed by the Central Bank of Russia for May 25
(RIA Novosti) - The following rates of exchange of foreign currencies to the ruble of the Russian Federation have been fixed for the purposes of accounting and customs duty payments from May 25, 2006: 1 Australian dollar - 20.3247 rubles 1,000 Belarusian rubles - 12.6004 rubles 10 Danish krones - 46.3251 rubles 1 US dollar - 27.0168 rubles 1 euro - 34.5815 rubles 100 Icelandic krones - 37.2337 rubles 100 Kazakh tenges - 22.0725 rubles 1 Canadian dollar - 24.0406 rubles 10 Chinese yuan - 33.6763 rubles 1 new Turkish lira - 17.4414 rubles 10 Norwegian krones - 44.1119 ruble [...]
[2006-05-24] Russia to ban independent foreign adoptions
(RIA Novosti) - Independent adoptions of Russian children by foreign citizens will be banned in Russia by the end of this year, a senior education ministry official said Tuesday. According to ministry figures, 12 Russian children adopted by non-Russian families have died of abuse since 1991. Eleven of the cases were registered in the United States. "The ministry has drafted amendments to the federal law on adoptions that prohibit foreign families from adopting Russian children without the assistance of licensed adoptions agencies," Sergei Apatenko said. He added that the government had a [...]
[2006-05-23] Ruble to be fully convertible in summer - Zhukov
(RIA Novosti) - Restrictions on capital flow in Russia will be abolished this summer, a deputy prime minister said Monday. "We will lift the remaining restrictions on the movement of capital in Russia soon, probably as early as this summer," Alexander Zhukov said. He said that the ruble was practically fully convertible in foreign trade operations. "This summer the ruble will become fully convertible in all operations with capital," Zhukov said, adding that this move would boost the investment in the economy. He also said capital inflow in 2005 had exceeded capital outflow for the firs [...]
[2006-05-23] Petersburg to shut down waterways during July G8 summit
(RIA Novosti) - Boats will be banned from taking to the Neva River and the Gulf of Finland during a G8 summit this summer, an emergencies official said Monday. Earlier, officials were quoted as saying that life in Russia's second city, which is built on hundreds of islands and is the country's most important port on the Baltic, would continue without disruption during the July 15-17 summit of the Group of Eight leading industrialized nations. "Boat movement will be completely stopped during the G8 summit," Konstantin Pashinsky, the head of the State Inspection for Small Vessels, said, addi [...]
[2006-05-23] Russia to avoid Schengen visa price rise
(RIA Novosti, Alexander Shishlo) - Schengen visa prices will remain at the current level for Russian citizens, in line with agreements to be signed with the European Union on visa regulations and readmission procedures, a Russian diplomat said Monday. "The EU's decision to raise short-term Schengen visa prices from 35 to 60 euros does not affect countries with which the EU has signed or is set to sign agreements on simplified visa regulations," said Vladimir Chizhov, Russia's ambassador to the EU. According to the agreements, expected to be signed at a summit on May 25, Russia and the EU w [...]
[2006-05-23] The longest bench to appear in Moscow
By June, the longest bench in the world is due to appear in Moscow, opposite the Tretyakovskaya gallery. It will be dated for the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the gallery. The length of the “Tretyakovskaya bench” will be 320 meters and it will be painted by 150 artists for a day. Now it only remains to make sure that the bench will be the longest one in the world indeed. If it turns to be so, the administration of the museum will apply for registering it in the Guiness book of records. [...]
[2006-05-22] May 27 and 28 are the Days of Kiev
The capital of the Ukraine is celebrating the Days of Kiev, which will last till the end of this month.The celebration started from the theatrical festival called Kiev travnevy. The main days of celebration are May 27 and 28. On the Square of Europe and the Square of Independence, there will be shows with Ukrainian stars till late night. As a part of the celebration, festivals of fast food and drinks, including “Pan Varenik”, the festival of kites, fishing and sportive competitions will be held in Kiev. This scenario of the celebration is traditional and no surprises are expected this year. [...]
[2006-05-22] New form of payment in Kiev subway
Kiev subway intends to launch a new form of payment in the nearest future. It is due to start by May 28. Passengers will use non-contact cards with a certain sum on their account. Fee will depend on the distance. The data will be read from the card at the entrance and exit from the subway. To add money onto the card will be possible at any subway station. So far, only 28 out of 65 subway halls have machines where passengers can add money onto their cards. The new system of payment provides discounts for those that use subway on a frequent basis, ICTV informs. [...]
[2006-05-12] Lots of Americans find their match on-line
Spring is in the air, and, after a long winter hibernation, so is love. Web-enabled love, that is. These days, many are turning to online matchmakers for romance. According to an April study by the Washington-based Pew Internet and American Life Project, 31 percent of American adults - that's 63 million people - know someone who has used a dating Web site. And 30 million Americans know someone who is in a long-term relationship or married to someone they met online. [...]
[2006-05-12] Orthodox communities abroad vote for reunification with Moscow
SAN FRANCISCO, May 12 (RIA Novosti, Olga Lipich) - The Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia (ROCOR) approved a resolution Friday to reunify with the Moscow Patriarchate. The document, a landmark in the ROCOR's history, was adopted on the fourth day of the ROCOR's Fourth All-Diaspora Council, and lays the groundwork for a canonical decision to join the Moscow Patriarchate as a self-governed branch, similar to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. "The resolution was passed by an open vote almost unanimously. Less than 5% voted against it," said Priest Serafim Gan, secretary to the head of the [...]
[2006-05-12] The Rolling Stones to perform in St. Petersburg
The Rolling Stones will perform in St. Petersburg on June 13 as scheduled, the local concert’s promoter PMI said in a statement this week. PMI confronted press reports that the local concert, which is the only Russian show on the band’s current tour, may be canceled due to an accident involving the Stones’ guitarist Keith Richards. Richards, 62, underwent surgery on Monday to relieve pressure on his brain. The operation involved drilling a hole in his skull to drain blood from the brain, the New Zealand Herald reported on Thursday. According to the paper, his spokeswoman, Fran Curtis, sa [...]
[2006-05-12] Cheburashka, a favorite cartoon characterof Soviet children, has won hearts of the Japanese
Like Mickey Mouse, his U.S. colleague, he was a leading cartoon character for millions of Soviet children. He inspired numerous jokes and even served as a symbol for the liberal intelligentsia. Today, Cheburashka -- the small, hairy animated creature with big round ears -- is enjoying success in what might seem to be an unlikely place: Japan.Cheburashka has been something of a cult phenomenon in Japan since 2001, when the original Soviet cartoons were shown in Japanese movie theaters, sparking sales of Cheburashka T-shirts, toys and other merchandise. Now, he is poised to make even deeper inro [...]
[2006-05-11] Visas to Cyprus to be given in Mariupol, Ukraine
The Honorary Consulate of the Republic of Cyprus is to be opened in Mariupol in the end of May. All official documents have already been signed by the Ministries of foreign affairs of both countries. The Consulate will be located in the building of the department of economy and law of the Mariupol state humanitarian university. The staff will consist of two officers that speak English and Greek languages. The Honorary Consulate in Mariupol will give visas to the citizens of Donetsk, Lugansk, Zaporozhie and Dnepropetrovsk oblasts. The Head of the University, Konstantin Balabanov, was appointed [...]
[2006-05-11] British Airways won’t take latecomers aboard
British Airways intend to teach their passengers punctuality. The company won’t let people that come late for their flights go aboard. If passengers come to the check-in less than 30 minutes before the departure of domestic and short-haul international flights and less than 45 minutes before long-haul flights, they risk not to be allowed to get on a plane. It also concerns people that will come to the boarding later than 10 minutes before the plane takes off. Such measures can help the company to save considerable means by decreasing delays in the airports and increasing the regularity of flig [...]
[2006-05-11] Surf the net while flying over Russia
Passengers of Boeing and Airbusplanes nowhave an access to the Internet flying over the territory of Russia. On May 4, Rossvyaznadzor gave permission to Connexion by Boeing Eastern Europe, the affiliate company of Boeing, to operate the central earth station of the mobile satellite connexion by Boeing. Foreign airlines started to provide Internet services aboard with the help of this system in 2004. Today Connexion systems by Boeing cover the whole territory of the Earth, excluding the North and South Poles.Connexion by Boeing installs and operates the system of access to the Internet on plane [...]
[2006-05-10] Women like men who like kids
Women looking for a long-term relationship like men who like children -- and they can tell which guys might be interested in becoming fathers just by looking at their faces. Those are among the findings of a study of college students published Wednesday in a British scientific journal. "This study suggests that women are picking up on facial cues that are perhaps related to paternal qualities," said James Roney, a University of California at Santa Barbara psychologist and lead author of the study. "The more they perceived the men as liking kids, the more likely they could see having a longer- [...]
[2006-05-10] Young Russians' housing problems
(RIA Novosti political commentator Yuri Filippov) -- Where to live is one of the key problems facing nearly all young Russians. Having your own flat is a ticket to marrying and having a family, finding a place in society and looking confidently into the future. Russia is a cold country with severe winters where living in a banana bungalow or cardboard hut would be more like dying. A house in Russia should have thick walls and reliable heating, water supply and sewage systems. Young people in the countryside prefer to build their houses themselves, which is out of the question for the major [...]
[2006-05-10] Older than 40, single.... Now What?
/Buxterbulletin.com/ -- You're over 40, single and about to dip into the dating pool. Now what? "Women are pushovers for flowers — send them flowers," says Bob Buechler, at 66 a bachelor who's been active on the singles scene for 20 years. "Let's face it; if you're going to hang with women, you've got to take them out. It's going to cost you money." Scholars are studying the issue. One research paper, Dating in Later Life, explored the courtship experiences of women older than 60. It was written by Kandi L. Walker, an associate professor of communications at the University of Louisville, Fr [...]
[2006-05-10] White Nights festival at the Mariinsky theater
(RIA Novosti) - St. Petersburg's famous Mariinsky Theater will host a star-studded festival lasting over two months before closing for an overhaul. This year sees the fourteenth running of the Stars of the White Nights Festival, a showcase event for the theater better known outside Russia by its Soviet-era name - the Kirov. "The festival will be the Mariinsky's last large-scale event before the historic theater building closes down for refurbishment," organizers said. The theater will use the two and a half month long marathon, which starts May 10, to pay tribute to 20th-century composer [...]
[2006-05-08] You don't need to be tall and good-looking to attract women
/24-7PressRelease/ - What started as a much-needed lift in feminine rights and equality has led to men's confusion regarding gender roles, and the problem is worsening according to San Francisco Bay Area dating advisor Carlos Xuma."We're in a crisis of male self-confidence," Carlos states. "Since the 70s and 80s, many single-parent families lacked a strong masculine role model for boys to bond with and learn from. Guys grew up into uncertain young men - and felt intimidated by the new gender roles in our society. They needed to know how to fit in."Indeed, many women today report they are dis [...]
[2006-04-24] Online Dating Service - Why uploading a picture is such a good idea
In the world of online dating, one of the issues that keeps coming up is the photo issue. Surveys conducted by dating sites have shown that you are 10 times more likely to get contacted if you have a picture on your profile, regardless of your looks. Still, many people prefer to leave their photo area blank. There are many reasons why you may choose not to upload a photo. Some people are insecure about their looks and think a photo will actually damage their chances of finding a date, while others are ashamed of the fact that they are looking for love online and don't want their friends or col [...]
[2006-04-24] Online dating tips
Judith Silverman, author of ‘‘Online Dating for Dummies," offers these tips: Find the right site. Use a site that matches your goals and priorities. If you're certain you want to find someone who shares your religion, for example, consider using a Web site that caters to that. If one site isn't working, consider switching. Check out the competition. Look at profiles in the same general categories as yours to see how you stack up and to get ideas. Ask for help. Have trusted friends with good judgment look over your photos and written sections before you post your profile. Ask for overall i [...]
[2006-04-24] AIDS cases rise in Russia
BBC News HIV/Aids is progressing dangerously in Russia, with more than 30,000 new infections registered in the past year, medical officials have reported. The head of the anti-Aids programme, Vadim Pokrovsky, warned that a new wave of sexually-transmitted infections was adding to earlier drug-abuse cases. He said a number of urban centres had serious concentrations of infection. There are 350,000 people listed as HIV-positive in Russia but medical officials say it may be much higher. They say the figure may well have exceeded one million. The medical officials were reporting to Rus [...]
[2006-04-24] The first UK visa application processing center has opened in Russia
The UK visa application processing centre has started to work in Yekaterinburg. It is situated in Lenin street, 24a. The documents can be submitted to the centre from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. while the Consulate was open for just one hour – from 10 to 11 a.m. The centre in Moscow is due to be opened on April 28 and in St. Petersburg on May 4. The Consular fee for all types of visa remains the same. In addition to it, people applying for a visa will pay 900 roubles for the service of the center. The sum is fixed for all 11 British visa centers on the territory of Russia. [...]
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