Russia's federal guard service, in charge of protecting President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, may soon sport black leather overcoats harking back to the era of Stalin's purges. The elite service known by its Russian acronym FSO has launched a tender to purchase 60 leather trenchcoats on the official site for government purchases, instantly drawing tongue-in-cheek criticism from Russian bloggers.
Long leather trenchcoats are infamously associated with uniforms of Soviet NKVD secret police, worn by its low-ranking officers at the height of Stalin's pre-war purges in the late 1930s.Full Story
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Monday slammed Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's comments on military action against Libya as "unacceptable", in the most public clash yet between Russia's ruling tandem.
Putin earlier Monday denounced the U.N. resolution allowing military action on Libya as resembling a "medieval call to crusade", in one of his most virulent diatribes against the West in years.Full Story
Prime Minister Vladimir Putin stood meters away from a snow leopard in his latest stunt involving a threatened animal but insisted Monday he was just an "ordinary guy" in touch with Russia's problems.
Putin knelt meters away from the snow leopard, kept in a wire-mesh enclosure, as the mythical animal warily eyed the man who has dominated Russia for the last decade in Siberia, state television pictures showed.Full Story
Russia's opposition activists invited Prime Minister Vladimir Putin to switch places with jailed oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky Sunday by hanging a giant banner across from the Kremlin.
The banner, measuring about eight by 12 meters hung from a bridge in central Moscow. "Time to change," said the caption below a photograph of a freed Khodorkovsky alongside one with Putin pictured in a cage.Full Story
Vladimir Putin, who has carved out a health nut image by wrestling with tigers or judo opponents, raised eyebrows Thursday as he was pictured swollen-faced and caked in make-up, apparently to mask a black eye.
Journalists feverishly speculated that the Russian premier could have taken a punch during a judo session or even had a facelift, after he visited Ukraine on Wednesday slathered in war paint.Full Story
Israel's deadly raid on an aid flotilla for Gaza was a tragedy that demands detailed investigation and must not be repeated, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin told Agence France Presse in an interview.
"What is especially tragic is that this act was carried out in neutral waters," the Russian prime minister said in a discussion late Monday in the Black Sea resort town of Sochi.Full Story
Israel on Wednesday was discussing the format of an investigation into its deadly raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla, but Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu insisted soldiers would be off-limits.
Israel was in talks with "several members of the international community" about the investigation, Netanyahu said, stressing that it should focus on "the pro-Palestinian activists who fought the naval commandos with knives and clubs."Full Story