Category: Editors choice

This week in photos: Royals in black, Macron and Merkel mark Armistice, Putin in Singapore

This week in photos: Royals in black, Macron and Merkel mark Armistice, Putin in Singapore

Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II accompanied by Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge at the Cenotaph during Remembrance Sunday and the Centenary of the Armistice service on Whitehall in London, November 11 © EPA-EFE/ANDY RAIN French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel read a guest book inside a replica of the wagon where the WWI Armistice was signed in 1918, in the Clairiere of Rethondes, during a commemoration ceremony for Armistice Day, 100 years after the end of the First World War, in Compiegne, North of Paris, November 10 © Philippe Wojazer/Pool Photo via AP A view of the Dimitrovsky Bridge across the…

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Bahrain International Air Show 2018: Spectacular aerobatics soaring sky-high

Bahrain International Air Show 2018: Spectacular aerobatics soaring sky-high

The Bahrain International Airshow claims to have become the Middle East’s most influential and prestigious aviation event and one of the largest exhibition venues. This year, 33 military delegations from 19 countries and 20 civilian ones from 35 countries participated in the aviation event. Cruise through TASS photo production to have a look at the exhibition’s best aircraft on display. In other media

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Buran space shuttle celebrates 30th anniversary of milestone flight

Buran space shuttle celebrates 30th anniversary of milestone flight

The moment before launch of the Energia rocket with the Buran spacecraft, 1988 © Albert Pushkarev, Valentin Kuzmin/TASS Transportation of the launch vehicle Energia with the Buran spacecraft to the launch pad, 1988 © Albert Pushkarev/TASS Energia rocket with the Buran spacecraft taking off from the Baikonur cosmodrome, 1988 © Albert Pushkarev, Valentin Kuzmin/TASS Chief designer of the Energia launch system Boris Gubanov and chief designer of the Buran Spacecrafts, manned vehicles and stations Yuri Semenov seen after the landing of the Buran spacecraft, 1988 © Valentin Kuzmin, Albert Pushkarev/TASS Mig-25 plane piloted by Magomet Tolboyev accompanies Buran shuttle during its landing, November 15, 1988 © TASS Mria aircraft carries…

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Putin completely satisfied with oil price of $70 per barrel

Putin completely satisfied with oil price of $70 per barrel

One should ensure the optimal oil price for consumers and producers, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a press conference in Singapore.”One needs an optimal price for both producers and consumers. The price that we’ve had just recently – about $70 per barrel – is fine with us,” Putin said adding that one should not restrict oil output. Putin also said that the Russian budget was calculated on the price of $40 per barrel. “This gives us an opportunity to feel confident, to work calmly and achieve very good results, which are reflected in macroeconomics,” Putin said noting that this year Russia’s budget will “most…

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Putin sees no drama if Russia misses Davos forum

Putin sees no drama if Russia misses Davos forum

Russia’s absence at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos will not affect the authority of the country, President Putin said at a news conference following the summit in Singapore. “The authority depends primarily on the economic power of a country, on the structure of its economy,” Putin said adding that such factors as technological development, GDP growth and macroeconomic indicators also play an important role at this point. Making a reference to Russia, Putin also mentioned such indicators as low inflation, budget surplus or its minimum deficit, as well as low external debt.Putin noted that the Russian authorities achieve their goals in general, “and…

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Top 10 most expensive gemstones ever sold

Top 10 most expensive gemstones ever sold

A Christie’s employee displays The Pink Legacy, a 18.96 carat Fancy Vivid Pink Diamond at the Christie’s auction house in Geneva © EPA-EFE/MARTIAL TREZZINI On November 13, 2013, Sotheby’s sold the 59.60-carat “Pink Star” for $83.2 mln to New York-based diamond cutter Isaac Wolf who eventually defaulted on the deal. The Pink Star was mined by De Beers in 1999 in South Africa, and weighed 132.5 carat in the rough © EPA/ANDY RAIN The Oppenheimer Blue, a 14.62-carat vivid blue diamond, became the most expensive jewel ever sold at auction on May 16, 2016. The gem was named after its previous owner, Sir Philip Oppenheimer, the grandson…

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Russia rips its economy apart with help from the West

Russia rips its economy apart with help from the West

Experts believe that the rate of the Russian ruble may collapse again just like it happened during the crisis in 2014. In turn, Russian companies may deal with the shortage of currency to pay their debts on foreign markets. Pravda.Ru reported earlier that the net outflow of capital from Russia during the first ten months of 2018 made up $42.2 billion, which was three times as much as in the same period last year. This is the largest capital outflow figure that Russia has seen since 2014. Almost all of the additional income that Russia has received from growing oil prices was levelled off because…

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Russian PM threatens not to go to World Economic Forum in Davos

Russian PM threatens not to go to World Economic Forum in Davos

Russian officials and representatives of state-run companies will not go to Davos unless organisers of the economic forum lift restrictions for businessmen who fell under US sanctions.If organisers of the economic forum in Davos do not revise their decision about invitations to Russian businessmen, Moscow will not send state officials and representatives of companies with state participation to the forum, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said.”Then no one will go there,” Medvedev said adding that the decision not to let Russian entrepreneurs take part in the Davos forum was “very strange, to say the least.” Medvedev also said that he discussed the situation with Swiss…

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Capital outflow from Russia sets new records

Capital outflow from Russia sets new records

The net capital outflow from Russia during the first ten months of 2018 made up $42.2 billion, a report from the Central Bank of the Russian Federation said. This is three times as much as during the same period in 2017. Moreover, this is the largest figure of capital outflow that Russia has seen since 2014. According to the Central Bank, there are two main factors that make the outflow of capital grow. First off, Russian banks pay their foreign debts. Secondly, other sectors of economy invest in foreign assets. Earlier, the Central Bank reported the net outflow of $31.9 billion in January-September of 2018.…

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Russia close to recognising Donetsk and Luhansk republics after Donbass elections

Russia close to recognising Donetsk and Luhansk republics after Donbass elections

Moscow has strengthened its position in Luhansk and Donetsk People’s Republics (LDNR) on Sunday, November 11. Now there are legitimate authorities in the republics, with which Russia can implement the project of the economic integration of the Donbass.Representatives of Western countries and Ukraine released a joint statement at the UN, in which they said that they did not recognise the elections. This was predictable and uninteresting. Everyone understands that the elections in the breakaway republics became a real step towards the recognition of the independence of the People’s Republics of Luhansk and Donetsk by the Russian Federation.Moscow has repeatedly reminded that Russia was only a…

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Weapons and equipment of Russian chemical defense troops

Weapons and equipment of Russian chemical defense troops

The day of Russian Troops of Radiological, Chemical, and Biological Defense is a memorable date for Russian Armed Forces which is celebrated on November 13. Russian Chemical Defense Troops are tasked with assessing radiological and chemical environment, protecting units against chemical contamination, reducing the visibility of troops and facilities as well as conducting attacks by using flame-incendiary means. Weapons and equipment of Russian chemical troops – in this photo gallery by TASS. In other media

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Speech: PM speech to the Lord Mayor’s Banquet: 12 November 2018

Speech: PM speech to the Lord Mayor’s Banquet: 12 November 2018

My Lord Mayor, My Late Lord Mayor, Your Grace, My Lord Chancellor, Your Excellencies, My Lords, Aldermen, Sheriffs, Chief Commoner, ladies and gentlemen, this weekend our country came together to commemorate the centenary of the Armistice. Gathering around memorials across the length and breadth of the land, people of every faith and background stopped and stood together to remember the sacrifice of a generation. A sacrifice that touched almost every family and every community – including this one, when in 1915, the then Lord Mayor raised the “Bankers Battalion” of the Royal Fusiliers. From the stories we have heard, to the names we have read,…

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Russia negotiates with terrorists in Moscow

Russia negotiates with terrorists in Moscow

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov had a meeting with the administration of the Taliban* terrorist organisation in Moscow. Originally, the Russian government intended to have representatives of the government of Afghanistan involved in the talks. The latter, however, refused to talk to terrorists in the capital of Russia. Russia’s Foreign Minister did not miss such an opportunity, though. After the meeting, a member of the Taliban,* Mohammad Abbas Stanakzai, set out a hope that such meetings would take place in the future as well. Daria Mitina, ex-deputy of the State Duma of the Russian Federation, granddaughter of the Prime Minister of Afghanistan in 1963-1965, shared…

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Russian Foreign Minister negotiates with terrorists in Moscow

Russian Foreign Minister negotiates with terrorists in Moscow

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov had a meeting with the administration of the Taliban* terrorist organisation in Moscow. Originally, the Russian government intended to have representatives of the government of Afghanistan involved in the talks. The latter, however, refused to talk to terrorists in the capital of Russia. Russia’s Foreign Minister did not miss such an opportunity, though. After the meeting, a member of the Taliban,* Mohammad Abbas Stanakzai, set out a hope that such meetings would take place in the future as well. Daria Mitina, ex-deputy of the State Duma of the Russian Federation, granddaughter of the Prime Minister of Afghanistan in 1963-1965, shared…

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Press release: UK condemns illegitimate “elections” held in the Donbas, Ukraine

Press release: UK condemns illegitimate “elections” held in the Donbas, Ukraine

A Foreign & Commonwealth Office spokesperson said: The UK condemns the so-called “elections” which Russian-backed separatists held in the Donbas, Ukraine on 11 November: they are illegitimate and in violation of the Minsk Agreements. They undermine efforts to achieve peace in the region, and they are illegal under Ukrainian law. These so-called “elections” took place against the background of Russia’s continued violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. Russia is providing arms to the separatists in the Donbas, with the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) reporting a flow of Russian military convoys crossing in and out of eastern Ukraine. We call on…

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Paris hosts global leaders to mark 100th anniversary of WWI Armistice

Paris hosts global leaders to mark 100th anniversary of WWI Armistice

The large-scale celebrations marking the 100th anniversary of the World War I Armistice were held in Paris. French President Emmanuel Macron led tributes to the millions of soldiers killed during World War I. Russian President Vladimir Putin, US President Donald Trump, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and dozens of monarchs, princes, presidents and prime ministers gathered in Paris to mark the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.   In other media

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This week in photos: Santa School, frogs stuffing their faces and Guy Fawkes Night in UK

This week in photos: Santa School, frogs stuffing their faces and Guy Fawkes Night in UK

A view of the Shining Moon light installation of 7m in diameter erected on the Obvodny Canal in St Petersburg as part of the 2018 St Petersburg Light Festival, November 3 © Peter Kovalev/TASS A participant dressed as a Red Army soldier stands next to a motorcycle with a sidecar and a tank during the dress rehearsal of a historical re-enactment, which marks the 77th anniversary of the 1941 military parade in Red Square, Moscow, November 5 © Sergei Savostyanov/TASS A dog yawns in the cab of a classic 1938 Ford, currently being used as a taxi, as it sits parked before the XIV rally of antique…

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Press release: Foreign flagged ships detained in the UK during October 2018

Press release: Foreign flagged ships detained in the UK during October 2018

During September, there were two new detentions of foreign flagged vessels in a UK port, three vessels remained under detention from previous months. A total of three vessels remain under detention at the end of October. In response to one of the recommendations of Lord Donaldson’s inquiry into the prevention of pollution from merchant shipping, and in compliance with the EU Directive on Port State Control (2009/16/EC as amended), the Maritime and Coastguard agency (MCA) publishes details of the foreign flagged vessels detained in UK ports each month. The UK is part of a regional agreement on port state control known as the Paris Memorandum…

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Mikhail Gorbachev shares his thoughts on nuclear war

Mikhail Gorbachev shares his thoughts on nuclear war

Mikhail Gorbachev, former president of the USSR, shared his thoughts on the nuclear war. Mikhail Gorbachev is surprised that top officials from different countries, the general public and mass media talk about the nuclear war as if it may break out at any moment. They discuss possible scenarios, potentials and outcomes, Gorbachev regrettably said.The tensions between the United States of America and the Russian Federation have been getting increasingly stronger, Mikhail Gorbachev admits. However, one must do their best to try to avoid a tragic development such as a nuclear war. There will be no winner in a nuclear war, even though some may think…

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Without INF Treaty, USA can destroy Russian nuclear weapons easily

Without INF Treaty, USA can destroy Russian nuclear weapons easily

Former chief of staff of Russia’s Strategic Missile Forces, Colonel-General Viktor Yesin, shared his opinion on the Russian system of automatic nuclear retaliation known as the “Perimeter.” In the West, he system is known as the “Dead Hand.”According to Viktor Yesin, Russian weapons may simply be ineffective in case of an open armed confrontation. The point is about the withdrawal of the United States from the INF Treaty, which regulates the elimination of short and medium range missiles. The “Perimeter” functions perfectly and has passed all stages of preparation and verification, Viktor Yesin said. The system can be used only if all of Russia’s other…

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Financial bubble in Russia about to burst as mortgage debt reaches all-time high

Financial bubble in Russia about to burst as mortgage debt reaches all-time high

The Federal Bailiff Service (FSSP) has provided a report about the total debt that Russian citizens hold. According to the agency, Russians citizens owe a total of 3.8 trillion rubles (about $264 billion) as of October 1, 2018.The FSSP report said that there were 31.3 million enforcement proceedings pending as of early October 2018.Over the course of one year, the amount of debt has increased by 5.5 percent, or 0.2 trillion rubles. In late October, it was reported that the mortgage debt in Russia reached an absolute historical maximum and was evaluated at 2.07 trillion rubles. As many as 1.3 million Russians cannot leave the…

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Speech: Britain and France: Past, Present and Future

Speech: Britain and France: Past, Present and Future

Updated: Added translation It is a great pleasure to be here in Paris this morning, in this historic setting. This is – to use a little English understatement – an important moment in the future of the relationship between our countries. There have been many such moments in the long sweep of our history, and we know, without a doubt, that there will be many more in the decades to come. What matters is what we decide to do with those moments. Those decisions fall to each generation. To plot their own course and determine their destiny and that of their countries. What is unique…

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Press release: Minister for Europe opens the fifth Wardrop Strategic Dialogue in Georgia

Press release: Minister for Europe opens the fifth Wardrop Strategic Dialogue in Georgia

Sir Alan Duncan will strengthen UK-Georgia relations this week as he visits Tbilisi (Thursday 8 November) for high-level talks, known as the Wardrop Strategic Dialogue. This year, the Wardrop Strategic Dialogue takes place against the backdrop of two important milestones for Georgia, the 100th anniversary of Georgia’s independence and the 10th anniversary of the Georgia – Russia conflict. Relations between the governments of the UK and Georgia are at an all-time high, and the dialogue will provide an opportunity to discuss continued co-operation in a wide range of issues such as trade, defence, cultural links and the mutual values which underpin the strength of our…

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Moscow re-enacts historic, morale-boosting 1941 military parade on Red Square

Moscow re-enacts historic, morale-boosting 1941 military parade on Red Square

About 5,000 people marched along Red Square to celebrate the 77th anniversary of the historic military parade held in Moscow on November 7, 1941. The first parade in the virtually besieged Moscow in which 28,500 participated and which had lasted for about an hour had had an enormous influence on the course of the war, because this event contributed to an upsurge in morale throughout the whole country. In other media

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Washington’s draconian measures may ruin relations with Russia completely

Washington’s draconian measures may ruin relations with Russia completely

Washington is going to introduce a second package of sanctions against Russia in connection with the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal. According to US State Department spokesperson Heather Neuert, there was no confirmation to prove that Russia had fulfilled the conditions stipulated by the 1991 law on the control of chemical and biological weapons.According to US authorities, Russia has been involved in a series of poisonings, including the March 4 attack in the UK, when former GRU colonel Sergei Skripal and his daughter were exposed to a nerve agent in Salisbury.The first package of sanctions was introduced in August. The sanctions banned the…

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Speech: Committing to Peace and Security in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Speech: Committing to Peace and Security in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Thank you very much indeed Mr President and thank you to the High Representative for your briefing today and for the work of your office to maintain peace and stability in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Bosnia and Herzegovina has long been a very important issue for this Council. Almost a totemic issue, if one goes back to the start of the conflict in the early 1990s. For the United Kingdom’s part, we remain committed to the continuing role the High Representative and your office. The OHR as it’s known remains the final authority regarding the civilian implementation of the peace agreement, and this includes our support…

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The sky’s the limit: 12th Airshow China takes off in Zhuhai

The sky’s the limit: 12th Airshow China takes off in Zhuhai

The 12th international aerospace exhibition Airshow China 2018 commenced in the city of Zhuhai on November 6. Airshow China is one of the five largest air fairs in the world and exerts great influence on the development of world aviation. The Russian exposition at Zhuhai is one of the most representative and biggest displays of all the international exhibitions. In other media

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Russia to cut number of liquor stores to increase life expectancy

Russia to cut number of liquor stores to increase life expectancy

The number of stores selling alcohol and tobacco is to be reduced considerably in Russia already in the near future. As part of “Demography” national project, the Russian government intends to take a number of measures to increase the average life expectancy in Russia to 80 years by 2030.To achieve the goal, one needs to considerably reduce the consumption of alcohol and tobacco i the country, experts say. Price, space and time constraints are the most effective methods in the struggle  against bad habits, specialists believe. Thus, the Russian government proposed to establish a special limit on the number of liquor stores depending on how…

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Russia increases number of cruise missiles 30 times

Russia increases number of cruise missiles 30 times

The number of cruise missiles in the Russian army has increased 30 times in the past six years. An article posted on the Krasnaya Zvezda (Red Star) newspaper of the Russian Armed Forces says that Russia has had a breakthrough in supplying long-range precision weapons, such as Iskander-M tactical missile systems, as well as submarines and surface ships armed with Caliber missiles. As a result, the number of land, sea and air-based carriers has increased by more than 12 times, while the number of high-precision cruise missiles has grown by more than 30 times.In addition, the Russian army has established special units that elaborate plans…

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Speech: Chemical Weapons in Syria

Speech: Chemical Weapons in Syria

Thank you very much Mr President, and as it’s the first time I personally am taking the floor may I congratulate you on the presidency and thank Bolivia for her presidency last month. Thank you too, to the High Representative for your briefing. I think it’s clear that not enough progress has been made. At one level this isn’t a surprise, given the Syrian authorities’ track record. But there’s another level Mr President. I think it just beggars belief; chemical weapons are universally prohibited weapons. They’re prohibited by international law. Everybody on the Council, bar one member, stresses this and stresses the supreme importance of…

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