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The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Russia Update: February 4, 2015

Publication: Russia Update
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The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
What Russia's Petro Rubles Have Purchased
The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Former Russian Nuclear Center Employee Charged with Leaking State Secrets

A former employee of the Russian Federal Nuclear Center in Sarov in Nizhegorod Region has been accused of divulging state secrets, Radio Svoboda, the Russian-language Service of the US-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported.

Vladimir Golubev has been accused of leaking state secrets in a publication in a scientific journal which he wrote in 2003 for a conference in Czech Republic.

Golubev is a specialist on explosive materials. His lawyer Yevgeny Gubin told Interfax that his client's work did not contain any classified material.

The scientist's apartment was searched and his electronic devices were confiscated. He could face up to four years of imprisonment. Gubin said that Golubev had also been fired from his job in 2013, where he had worked since 1975. He is now on a pension.

The Federal Security Service (FSB) did not comment on the case.

Yesterday, Svetlana Davydova, a mother of 7 in the city of Vyazma, was released from pre-trial detention in the KGB's Lefortovo Prison after being charged as well with disclosing state secrets. Davydova was accused of revealing the location of Russian military intelligence troops near her home who she believed had been deployed to Ukraine.

These type of cases involving information that was already known and disclosed by people without access to classified materials, or who had already long ago published the materials legally point to a heightened level of "spy mania" in the Russian government.

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Belarusian Leader Lukashenka to Meet Putin in Sochi
The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Elderly St. Petersburg Woman, Siege Survivor Charged with Butter Theft Dies at Police Station
An elderly woman who had survived the Siege of Leningrad was arrested for stealing three sticks of butter, and then died at the police station, RosBalt reported.

The story is being widely discussed on Russian social media as it seems to be emblematic of the economic crisis now, where pensions aren't stretching to meet higher food prices.

Emma Leshina, head of the Leningrad Blockade Residents' society, which keeps track of survivors, says that the woman, whose name was not given, was a member of her organization. Leshina said the blokadnitsa, as such people are known received a decent pension and lived in a one-room apartment which she kept tidy. She was worried about her health, however (translation by The Interpreter):

The only thing we noted was that she was a bit confused in answering questions. You ask one question and she would answer another, she was absent-minded, and didn't speak on topic. Now they report that she did this [stole from the magazine--Rosbalt] repeatedly. But we're hearing about this for the first time. If they had told us that she was stealing something, we would have asked doctors to examine her -- we have a social welfare department and a doctor on duty. She should have been examined before bringing her to the police station. We think she had a temporary loss of memory, and when she was brought to the police, she realized what had happened and her conscience got to her.


Leshina thinks that the trauma of starvation during the Nazi siege of Leningrad, now called St. Petersburg, could have had an effect on her.

Police said the woman was arrested at the Kronshtadt Magnit store at 15:30 and was suspected of stealing three sticks of butter, worth about 300 rubles ($4.50). She then felt poorly and collapsed, and doctors were unable to revive her.

-- Catherine A. Fitzpatrick


The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Memorial Human Rights Group Member Beaten During Court Recess In Dagestan

Ekho Moskvy reports, citing the Interfax news agency, that Murad Magomedov, a member of the Memorial human rights organisation, has been beaten during a break in a court hearing in Makhachkala, Dagestan.

According to Oleg Orlov, one of the heads of the organisation, Magomedov was attacked by five men during the court recess.

Magomedov had been acting as legal counsel in the trial, which was note connected to Memorial's activities.

He has been hospitalised with serious head injuries. 

-- Pierre Vaux

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