Russian News: September 5th, 2008!

RBC, 05.09.2008, Moscow 20:10:56.The leaders of Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) member states have supported Russia’s initiative to develop a European security treaty, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev told a press conference today. In a declaration signed following a CSTO summit, the organization’s members expressed concern over the proliferation of short- and medium-range missiles in Europe. The document also covers the prospects of building relations between the CSTO and the UN.

RBC, 05.09.2008, Moscow 19:18:37.While Russia has always stood for settling conflicts by political and diplomatic means, it is ready to robustly defend its interests in the future, President Dmitry Medvedev said following a Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) summit in Moscow today. He noted that during the summit, CSTO countries supported Russia’s stance regarding the Caucasus conflict, criticizing Georgia’s recent military actions in the region and urging the global community to assess the situation without double standards.

RBC, 05.09.2008, Tskhinval 18:38:55.First Deputy Speaker of the Russian State Duma Oleg Morozov claimed today during the visit of the interparliamentary commission to Tskhinval that the Georgian authorities who ordered to kill civilians in South Ossetia should be prosecuted. Morozov also suggested making a “White Book” containing information on each facility and house that had come under attack, and each victim of the conflict, based on which lawsuits will be filed.

RBC, 05.09.2008, Moscow 18:19:56.Russia has informed Oman that it is ready to buy out the latter country’s stake in the Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC), Russia’s Deputy Energy Minister Stanislav Svetlitsky told journalists today. Russia accepted Oman’s offer for the entire 7-percent stake it currently holds in CPC, the official specified. At the same time, he said that Kazakhstan, which shared a preemptive right for the stake with Russia, remained interested in acquiring the shares. The final decision on the distribution of the stake has yet to be made, Svetlitsky pointed out. He added that, among other options, Russia and Kazakhstan might buy out 4 percent and 3 percent of the shares, respectively.

RBC, 05.09.2008, Moscow 16:31:41.Russia hopes that the US will not act to prevent South Ossetian and Abkhaz representatives from participating in the upcoming discussions of the Georgia-Abkhazia and Georgia-Ossetia conflicts to be held at the UN headquarters in New York, said spokesman for the Russian Foreign Ministry Andrei Nesterenko. He reiterated that, following current international practice, South Ossetia and Abkhazia have the right to explain their point of view on the recent events in the Caucasus. When asked about the possibility of holding a UN Security Council meeting in Switzerland, Nesterenko expressed concern that the US might not grant Swiss visas to South Ossetia and Abkhazia representatives.

RBC, 05.09.2008, Moscow 13:16:15.The parliamentary session of the Russia-Belarus Union State is likely to review the recognition of South Ossetia and Abkhazia’s independence, State Duma Speaker and Co-Chairman of the Union State parliamentary assembly Boris Gryzlov told journalists today. The Russian official made this statement in response to deputy Anatoly Lokot’s urge to discuss the matter during the session.

RBC, 05.09.2008, Moscow 11:53:58.During a working visit to South Ossetia and Abkhazia, Russia’s chief military prosecutor Sergei Fridinsky inspected the enforcement of law and order among Russian peacekeeping forces, the disposition of the troops and the delivery of all items required by the servicemen, the prosecutor’s press office told RBC today. Russian peacekeepers have confiscated a large number of weapons from the Georgian military, including not only Soviet-made arms but also weapons and military equipment produced in the US, the Czech Republic, Ukraine and other countries, Fridinsky was cited by the press office as saying. Some of the weapons have been produced this year and are quite modern, Fridinsky noted. He added that all weapons would be thoroughly examined, registered, and given over to law enforcement officials, who would decide on their future destination in accordance with the law.

RBC, 05.09.2008, Sochi 11:14:41.The Bank of Russia expects a zero inflation rate in September, the bank’s First Deputy Chairman Alexei Ulyukayev said during an international banking forum in Sochi today. He reiterated that Russia’s inflation stood at 0.3 percent in August and 9.7 percent in the first eight months of 2008. Inflation was higher in late August this year, while it was negative in August 2007, Ulyukayev added. He also noted that the increase in this August’s inflation could be primarily attributed to higher prices for meat and dairy products.