Tag Archives: Vladimir Putin

Putin says he allowed Alexei Navalny to be treated in Germany | News | DW | Instant News

Russian authorities can legally prevent opposition leader Alexei Navalny from leaving the country while in a coma, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday.

However, Putin said he personally asked Russian prosecutors to allow the trip, adding that he intervened after an appeal from Navalny’s wife. Following Navalny’s fall in August, his wife, Yulia, sent a letter to Putin asking him to allow her husband to be flown to Germany for medical treatment.

“I immediately asked the prosecutor’s office to allow this, and he left,” Putin said in a televised video conference with the Valdai Discussion Club-based think tank.

Read more: Angela Merkel said Novichok’s poisoning of Alexei Navalny was attempted murder

Navalny recovers in Berlin

The 44-year-old Kremlin critic suddenly fell ill and fell into a coma while flying back to Moscow from the Siberian city of Tomsk. He was first taken to the hospital in Omsk. Aides accused staff and authorities of not being interested in saving his life.Medical team from Germany arrived at the hospital and examined Navalny, making sure he was fit to be transported out of Russia. Omsk’s doctors initially refused, but gave the green light for the trip hours later. Navalny was flown to Berlin while still in a coma.

A specialized laboratory in Germany found he had been poisoned by the Soviet-style Novichok nerve agent, with laboratories in Sweden and France confirming the findings. The poisoning sparked outrage in the West, with Angela Merkel from Germany and Emmanuel Macron from France pressing Russia for answers about this case.

Navalny has finally recovered, and is currently recovery in Germany. Navalny held Putin responsible for his poisoning.

On Thursday, Putin said that, if Russian authorities wanted to poison Navalny: “They wouldn’t send him for treatment in Germany, would they?”

‘Let’s investigate this together’

After examining Navalny’s blood sample, Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) also confirmed the existence of substances with “structural characteristics similar to those of the toxic chemicals” in the Novichok family. They say it is a new variant of the nerve agent Novichok.

Putin presented this because the OPCW was inconclusive on this issue.

“They said there were traces of Novichok,” said Putin. “Then everything was turned over to the OPCW and then they said ‘This is not Novichok, this is something else.’ There was doubt formed about what was said at first. “

The Russian leader also called for a joint investigation that would include experts from France, Germany and Sweden.

dj / rc (AP, Reuters, AFP, Interfax)


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Putin and Schröder: The German-Russian friendship under attack | Germany | News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | Instant News

The close friendship between Russian President Vladimir Putin and former German Chancellor Schröder, often described as a “bromance”, is seen by many critics as justifying Putin’s increasingly autocratic control of Russian politics.

Friendship has existed for a long time. Many in Germany still remember a 2004 interview in which Schröder was asked if Putin was a “flawless democrat”. To which the former Chancellor responded: “Yes, I believe he is.” The answer, of course, is dynamite.

Back in March 2004, the “perfect democrat” had just won 71% of the vote in the Russian presidential election; controlling most of the major state institutions; complicate the formation of new political parties; and suppress the activities of non-governmental organizations.

But it is clearly a different Putin that Schröder had in mind: Vladimir Putin with whom he shares such an intimate friendship. Vladimir Putin who took him on a Christmas sled trip in Moscow. And Vladimir Putin who visited Schröder’s home in Hanover to celebrate his 60th birthday.

In 2005 Gerhard Schröder and Vladimir Putin met in St Petersburg

Friends with blind spots together

So, in early 2004, Schröder was willing to jump into Putin’s defense and, in effect, that’s what stood.

But why is the former German chancellor so willing to side with an autocrat? Gernot Erler – a Russian scholar and, like Schröder, a member of the German social democrats (SPD) – believes he has an answer to that question:

“We will never hear criticism of Putin’s actions coming from Gerhard Schröder,” he said. “And it is precisely because of their long-lasting friendship. For Schröder, this means that whatever the facts: they support each other in any way.”

Read more: Schröder accuses Chancellor Merkel of ‘fatal mistake’

In 2005, Chancellor Gerhard Schröder and his party the SPD lost the snap elections by a narrow margin. He gave up his seat in Parliament and announced that his political career was over.

At Putin’s request, Schröder was immediately appointed chairman of the Nord Stream natural gas pipeline. Less than a month after leaving the chancellery, he allowed the Russian president to convince him of a “project with European dimensions.”

European dimension? Poland and the Baltic republics harshly criticized Schröder’s support for the Nord Stream. And in Germany, there is also a loud roar. Schröder’s political opponents were quick to label him “shameless” and his new post “indecent”. After all, he had given massive support to the pipeline project while he was, most recently, still in office.

Partying in St. Petersburg and war in Ukraine

In 2014, Gerhard Schröder celebrated his 70th birthday. And he did it in style: at St. Petersburg. Petersburg – at the invitation of Nord Stream. He welcomed his special guest Vladimir Putin with a big hug and described him as a very reliable friend with whom he has developed a relationship based on mutual trust: “Call it friendship,” said Schröder. However, he stressed, the two friends did not “talk politics”.

Schröder hugs Putin as he gets out of his car (picture-alliance / dpa / A. Maltsev)

In 2014 Gerhard Schröder was widely criticized for hugging his friend Putin, who recently ordered an invasion of the Crimean peninsula.

At that time Russia had just violated international law by annexing the Crimean Black Sea peninsula, which officially belongs to Ukraine. Andin eastern Ukraine, civil war has just broken outbetween Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists.

So, an extraordinary birthday celebration is taking place at St. Meanwhile Petersburg, only a thousand kilometers to the south, there was war. For many in Berlin, this was an unacceptable provocation.

Schröder’s seemingly “uncritical” friendship with Putin regularly makes news in Germany. In 2016, Gerhard Schröder pointed to history to explain the deep connection: “Our two families suffered terribly during World War II. I lost my father. Putin’s brother died during the German siege of Leningrad,” said Schröder. “And,” he continued, Putin has “kept every promise he made, as I did, too.”

Read more: Who are Putin’s and Russia’s allies in Germany?

Schröder continues to attack

A year later, in 2017, the Russian government proposed Schröder as chairman of the board of directors at Rosneft. This has come as a surprise to many observers, given the state-owned oil giant is on the EU sanctions list for its involvement in the annexation of Crimea.

“It’s my life and I decide what to do with it, and not the German press,” said Gerhard Schröder defiantly in his defense.

Schröder sits in the background reading Rosneft (Reuters / O. Astakhova)

In 2017, Gerhard Schröder became chairman of the board of directors at Rosneft.

That same year, in the midst of an election campaign in Germany, Schröder went to great lengths to criticize the German Bundeswehr troop deployment in Lithuania, near the Russian border. “It just sends the wrong signal,” said the former chancellor. Germany’s NATO allies are furious.

In an interview with Time Schröder later praised the Russian leader for his “rational behavior”, adding: “Compared to the US president, we should be happy to have Putin.”

Two years later, Schröder celebrated his birthday again – this time his 75th. And Putin took the opportunity to commend “his high-level international authority and central personal role in promoting German-Russian relations.”

Schröder’s relationship is still clear to maintain. And in the interview podcast in late September, he insisted that “there is no proven fact” that Russia was behind the poisoning of opposition activist Alexei Navalny – even though a German military laboratory had announced that samples taken from his blood confirmed the presence of the banned Novichok nerve agent. family.

When Navalny later calls Schröder Putin’s “messenger”, Schröder announced he would sue picture, Papers that publish interviews, for slander.

Nawalny, too, said he believed Putin had made secret cash payments to Gerhard Schröder. But he quickly admitted he didn’t have any proof of the allegations.

Alexander Lambsdorff of the German opposition Free Democratic (FDP), told DW: “With his behavior, Schröder is undermining German interests.”

“Even if Schröder’s involvement in Russia is legal,” he went on to say “it is definitely not appropriate for the former head of the German government.”

“Companies like Gazprom and Rosneft are not private businesses. They belong to the Russian state, which is using its energy policies as a weapon to intimidate its European neighbors,” Lambsdorff concluded.

There are many people in Germany who want to see a closer and more constructive relationship between Berlin and Moscow. But Across the political spectrum in Germany, Schröder’s deal with a shrewd former spy in the Kremlin was seen as counterproductive.

This article was translated from German.


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The OPCW confirms the neuroprotective agent used in Navalny poisoning | Instant News

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A photo of a leaflet published by Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny on his Instagram account on Wednesday, September 23, 2020. German doctors say Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was released from hospital after undergoing poisoning treatment. Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny has been released from a Berlin hospital after more than a month of being treated for poisoning, with doctors now believing that a “complete recovery” from the nerve agent was possible, the facility said Wednesday, Sept. 23. (Instagram Navalny via AP)

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A photo of a leaflet published by Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny on his Instagram account on Wednesday, September 23, 2020. German doctors say Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was released from hospital after undergoing poisoning treatment. Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny has been released from a Berlin hospital after more than a month of being treated for poisoning, with doctors now believing that a “complete recovery” from the nerve agent was possible, the facility said Wednesday, Sept. 23. (Instagram Navalny via AP)

BERLIN (AP) – The global chemical watchdog group has confirmed findings of Germany and other countries that Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was the victim of an attack with a Soviet-era nerve agent, German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokeswoman said Tuesday.

Steffen Seibert said in a statement that the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, or OPCW, had carried out its own analysis of samples taken from Navalny, and they “agreed with the results from specialized laboratories in Germany, Sweden and France.”

Navalny, a corruption investigator who is Russian President Vladimir Putin’s fiercest critic, was flown to Germany two days after falling ill on August 20 on a domestic flight in Russia. German officials last month said that the laboratory found traces of a chemical agent from the Novichok family in the Russian political system.

“This again unequivocally confirms that Alexei Navalny was the victim of an attack with a chemical nerve agent from the Novichok group,” said Seibert.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said it was just a coincidence that the German laboratory was the first to conclude that Navalny had been poisoned by Novichok because he was being treated in Berlin, and suggested that the OPCW report meant Russia could no longer make excuses for not responding. .

“The OPCW will make the results, and as far as possible analysis, available to 193 member countries,” said Maas. “That’s important because it’s not a bilateral issue between Germany and Russia, it’s an international topic – the use of nerve agents affects the entire international community.”

He added that for Germany, “the use of any chemical weapons is completely unacceptable and cannot be taken for granted.”

In a statement, OPCW Director General Fernando Arias described the test results as “a matter of great concern”.

Asked about the watchdog’s report in a conference call with journalists, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov refrained from commenting, saying the Kremlin needed to see the report to react.

Seibert said Germany received the OPCW report on Monday and is still checking it. Officials are still trying to determine how much information can be released to the public without causing a security risk by letting knowledge of its substance “fall into the wrong hands”.

He added that Germany will consult closely in the coming days with the OPCW and a group of EU partners to discuss next steps.

OPCW experts collected their own samples from Navalny and sent them to two designated laboratories for testing.

Earlier on Tuesday, Germany and its allies at a meeting of the OPCW Executive Council asked Moscow to fully investigate and explain how Navalny was poisoned with a military grade nerve agent.

“It is up to Russia – where the chemical attack took place – to explain the incident, and to provide an explanation of how chemical neuroprotective agents can be used in reckless actions against Russian citizens on Russian soil,” Germany’s representative to the organization, Gudrun Lingner, said in a statement. “To date, the Russian Federation has not provided a credible explanation.”

Lingner said Russia’s response so far to calls for clarification about Navalny’s poisoning “seeks to obscure, divert responsibility and distract from the main point – military-grade use of neuroprotective substances.”

Britain, which accuses Russia of using the nerve agent Novichok in a 2018 attack on former double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter in the British city of Salisbury, backed up Germany’s request for answers.

“It is less than three years since we have seen firsthand the deadly consequences of Novichok being used as a chemical weapon in the UK,” said Nicola Stewart, UK permanent representative to the OPCW. “We were surprised that there should have been a repeat anywhere in the world.”

Russian statements for the meeting were not immediately published online. Moscow is angry about the demands of the investigation, saying that Germany needs to share medical data in the case or compare notes with Russian doctors. Germany has noted that Russian doctors have had their own samples from Navalny since he was treated for 48 hours.

After the OPCW’s confirmation, a group of 44 member states including Germany, Britain, the United States and France delivered a statement at an Executive Council meeting strongly condemning the attack on Navalny.

The British delegation to the organization tweeted a copy of the statement, which also asked Russia “to investigate to reveal quickly and transparently the circumstances of this chemical weapons attack” and share the findings with the OPCW before the next full meeting of member states, scheduled to start at 30 November.


Mike Corder reporting from The Hague, Netherlands.


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Italy dropped to 5th in the contagion table – England | Instant News

(ANSA) – Rome, May 11 – A number of record infections in Indonesia
Russia has changed the position of the countries worst hit
COVID-19 throughout the world.

Italy Down to the Fifth.

Italy has dropped from fourth to fifth, behind Russia,
Britain, Spain and the United States, according to
Worldometer.com calculations, a website that provides
real-time statistics about pandemics.

In particular, Russia climbed to the table, with 11,656
transmission took a total of up to 221,344, compared with
219,814 registered in Italy until Monday (up to 744 in connection with)

USA Top.

The top of the United States fixed standings with more than 1.37
million infections, including 4,092 in just 24 hours.

Spain in second place with 268,143 and daily increase
Britain ranks third with 223,060 infections,
including 3,877 registered on Monday.

Russia Stares in Post-Emergency Phase.

Despite the number of infectious infections, Moscow already
think about how to regulate the post-emergency phase.

President Vladimir Putin said anti-coronavirus measures
in Russia “has saved thousands of lives” at an address to
the country in which he described the steps the government intends
to reach ‘phase two’.

Step by step.

He repeated the concept that it would be an assignment
“Regional governor” to frame opening and closing
activities to gradually make the economy run again.

Removing the restriction action “cannot be instant,
it must be done carefully, step by step “, he said.
Next, Putin announced it in the middle of the month
Russia will be able to conduct 300,000 COVID-19 tests a day, almost
double the current number of 170,000.

Deaths in the US Nearly 80,000.

As for deaths, the US has registered 776 more corona viruses
deaths in 24 hours, the lowest increase since March. Total number
the number of deaths in the country is now close to 80,000.

In the United Kingdom, an increasing number of deaths
dropped to 210, compared to 246 on Sunday, taking the total
to this day 32,065.