Friday, April 26, 2013

Pak clerics' fatwa: Voting compulsory


26.04.2013, 09:44
Pakistani religious scholars issued a 'fatwa' that declared voting in the country's upcoming general election was "compulsory under Islamic injunctions", a senior religious leader said.
Over 300 clerics from different schools of Islamic thought issued the decree in Islamabad nearly two weeks ahead of the May 11 general elections, Pakistan Ulema Council chairman Allama Tahir Ashrafi said.The edict was in marked contrast to the stance taken by the banned Pakistani Taliban, who have described democracy as "un-Islamic" and warned people not to participate in the landmark polls.
Source: Voice of Russia

Study: EU must embrace GM foods

 
25.04.2013, 19:45
Europe needs to embrace genetic modification technology in order to stay competitive in the world’s agricultural sector, according to a new study of the last 16 years of GM crop growth. VoR's Nima Green reports.
It found that the global farm income gain due to bio-technology since 1996, was nearly $100 billion.However, anti-GM campaigners argue that there isn’t a demand for GM food from consumers, and that most profits go to biotech companies and not to farming communities.
Source: Voice of Russia

NGO fined $10,000 under foreign agent law


25.04.2013, 15:40
A Russian court has imposed its first fine under new legislation designed to oblige non-government organisations (NGOs) to register as foreign agents if they receives foreign funds. Election monitor Golos has been fined $10,000  for receiving and not declaring foreign money.
According to Interfax, Golos representatives refused to admit any wrongdoing in court.According to the Justice Ministry, the Golos association is funded from abroad and is engaged in politics on Russian territory, which means that it performs the functions of a foreign agent.
Source: Voice of Russia

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Cold spell in the Arctic: how will the climatic mechanism work?


23.04.2013, 15:59
Global warming, which is so much talked about in recent years, may be replaced by global cooling. Scientists at the Pulkovo observatory of St. Petersburg suggest that the solar activity has started to decline and the annual average temperatures on our planet will begin to decrease. The forecasts of the global cooling are far from being groundless. Could this affect the grandiose plans for the Arctic development announced by many countries?
Quite recently, experts noted that the thickness of the Arctic ice is decreasing. And journalists wrote that the impending global warming will make it possible to grow oranges in the north of Siberia. Now all of a sudden, they have started talking about the possible global cooling on Earth. But I do not think that this will happen very quickly, says Yuri Nagovitsin, deputy director of the Pulkovo Observatory:“When you put it in media terms, the task seems to be very simple: the solar activity has waned and at once the temperature has gone down. Generally, there are 6-7 climatic factors, including the lithosphere, atmosphere, ocean, and glaciers. Solar activity can also be added to these as a factor. Its contribution to climatic change is 20 percent. That is, solar activity can only trigger a climatic variation.”
Source: Voice of Russia

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev charged with Boston blasts


23.04.2013, 10:57
Boston bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was arraigned on Monday in his hospital bed on charges of conspiring and using a weapon of mass destruction in his alleged role in the attacks that left three people dead and 200 wounded.
The US Department of Justice judged the 19-year-old to be alert at the arraignment.He was also charged with malicious destruction of property by means of deadly explosives,
Source: Voice of Russia

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Russia to upgrade Navy


12.03.2013, 14:07
Russia will get 78 warships in total by the end of 2020, said Russian Minister of Defense Sergey Shoigu as reported by RIA Novosti. According to Sergey Shoigu, military technology delivery is specified in State Armaments Program of Russian Federation.
Russia will get 78 warships in total by the end of 2020, said Russian Minister of Defense Sergey Shoigu as reported by RIA Novosti. According to Sergey Shoigu, military technology delivery is specified in State Armaments Program of Russian Federation. In the frame of the Program Russian Navy will receive 8 strategic nuclear-powered submarines, 16 general purpose submarines and 54 surface warships of varied classes.As reported in the beginning of January 2013, Russian Navy will receive 24 warships by 2016: 6 nuclear-powered submarines and 18 surface ships. Besides, the military will get 30 special operations and countersabotage boats. The projects and classes of warships were not specified. According to State Armaments Program Russia will spend 5 trillions rubles (163 billion USD) for the Navy reinforcement by 2020.
Source: Voice of Russia

Pervez Musharraf escapes arrest


18.04.2013, 12:22
A Pakistani court on Thursday ordered the arrest of former military ruler Pervez Musharraf, who immediately drove to his farmhouse on the edge of Islamabad, where he was guarded by police commandos.
Musharraf faced no resistance from a heavy security contingent at the court when he left the premises after the judge ordered his arrest over his controversial decision to dismiss judges when he imposed emergency rule in 2007.Police guarded the main gate of the luxury property and blocked off access to Musharraf's street in the upmarket suburb of Chak Shahzad but did not push back a huge bevvy of TV trucks and other media camped outside the gate.
Source: Voice of Russia

Romania, Bulgaria ink environment deal


18.04.2013, 12:54
Bulgaria and Romania have signed a deal to set up three wetland areas along their joint 470-kilometre (290-mile) Danube border, protecting pelicans, herons, pygmy cormorants and other birds. The agreement will likely include logging and hunting bans in the wildlife haven.
The agreement will establish a zone in the east around Bulgaria's Lake Srebarna and Romania's Lake Calarasi; a second in the centre, around Belene island and Lake Suhaia; and a third in the west, around Ibisha island and Lake Bistret.It was signed by environment ministers Ulian Popov of Bulgaria and Rovana Plumb of Romania.
Source: Voice of Russia

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Russian Tank T-90S at Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi is hosting the International Defense Exhibition and Conference IDEX 2013. Watch the breathtaking performance of a T-90S tank and a KRAZ armored personnel carrier.
Abu Dhabi is hosting the International Defense Exhibition and Conference IDEX 2013. Watch the breathtaking performance of a T-90S tank and a KRAZ armored personnel carrier.media
Source: Voice of Russia

Leader of Pakistani socialists killed in from bomb explosion


14.04.2013, 16:30
The head of the Pakistan National Awami Party (NAP), Mukkaram Shah was killed on Sunday as a result of explosion of a home-made bomb placed on the highway, reported the local police.
The explosion happened in the Swad valley controlled by the “Taliban” movement, when Shah’s car was proceeding towards the city of Mingora for election campaigning for presidential and local elections planned for May 2013. NAP is the left-wing, socialist party which is a part of ruling coalition of Pakistan. Talibs have regularly organised terrorist acts involving party leaders.
Source: Voice of Russia

Cuban sets world record in juggling the ball with head


14.04.2013, 15:29
Cuban Erick Hernandez set a world record for juggling a soccer ball with head. During a demonstration in a Havana hotel, he managed to throw the ball 350 times in a minute. He beat his previous achievement, entered in the Guinness Book of Records: 319 strikes per minute.
Cuban Erick Hernandez set a world record for juggling a soccer ball with head. During a demonstration in a Havana hotel, he managed to throw the ball 350 times in a minute. He beat his previous achievement, entered in the Guinness Book of Records: 319 strikes per minute. Hernandez said that he dedicates his record to Nicolas Maduro, who is contesting for the post of president of Venezuela in the upcoming general election on Sunday. In addition, the champion tried to draw the Cubans’ attention to football, which is the most popular sport on the island of Liberty behind baseball and boxing.
Source: Voice of Russia

34 people die in a road accident in Peru

 
14.04.2013, 14:08
The number of victims due to fall of a bus into an abyss in the Peruvian province Otusko has risen to 34. The accident occurred on a mountain road in the Andes, 600 kilometers north-west of the capital Lima.
The number of victims due to fall of a bus into an abyss in the Peruvian province Otusko has risen to 34. The accident occurred on a mountain road in the Andes, 600 kilometers north-west of the capital Lima. The bus lost control on an after rain slippery road and fell into the abyss of a depth of about 200 meters, at the bottom of which flows the river Moche. 34 people are killed in the accident, all but one have been identified. Among the dead eight were medical workers; the driver of the bus has also died. The search operation is going on. Wounded are taken to a nearby hospital, the condition of some of them is estimated to be serious. The number of victims could rise. According to official statistics, every year about 3 thousand people die and nearly 50,000 get injured in road accidents in Peru.
Source: Voice of Russia

Russian art gets new outlet


Abla Kandalaft
12.04.2013, 16:49
Russian arts get little coverage in the the west but it is hoped that a new newspaper will change that.The Art Newspaper Russia was launched in Russia a year ago this weekend, but is now available in the UK to appeal to the increasing numbers of Russians here.VoR's Abla Kandalaft went to the launch.

Ten pound start-up for young entrepreneurs

Brendan Cole
12.04.2013, 16:33
Here's ten pounds, now go and start a business.That's the thinking behind the Tenner Initiative where children and young people are given ten pounds to develop their own business idea.VoR's Brendan Cole spoke to Mike Mercieca, chief executive of Young Enterprise, the group behind the scheme.
Source: Voice of Russia

Galway teacher wins Arctic marathon

Simon Parker
12.04.2013, 17:25
A schoolteacher from Galway in Ireland is recovering at home this weekend after winning the gruelling North Pole Marathon this week, despite temperatures of minus thirty degrees centigrade.VoR's Simon Parker spoke to Gary Thornton after he completed the marathon in 3 hours 49 minutes and 29 seconds.
Source: Voice of Russia

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Will Chinese Soldiers Wash Their Boots in the Indian Ocean?

May be the Chinese soldiers won’t wash their boots in the Indian Ocean so soon, but the possibility of a Chinese naval base in the Pakistani port of Gwadar in future cannot be ruled out, forecasted expert of the Oriental Institute of Russian Science Academy, Tatiana Shaumyan.
May be the Chinese soldiers won’t wash their boots in the Indian Ocean so soon, but the possibility of a Chinese naval base in the Pakistani port of Gwadar in future cannot be ruled out, forecasted expert of the Oriental Institute of Russian Science Academy, Tatiana Shaumyan. She believes the Indian government’s concern at the transfer of strategically located port in south Pakistan to China was fully justified.Indian Defence Minister AK Antony said his country was concerned by transfer of port to China. Commenting on this statement Tatiana Shaumyan said this is a chronic concern for New Delhi. Tension between India and China over Gwadar emerged back in 2007, when China started active construction of this port. From the strategic perspective one can understand India’s painful reaction to China’s behaviour, Tatiana Shaumyan says: China now appears on two sides of India. On one side from the main border in Tibet and now in Gwadar on Pakistani soil. Besides this, China is demonstrating growing activity in the Indian Ocean. This is a region of strategic importance from where the situation can be controlled in South, South East and West Asia and African coast. That’s why any more than necessary consolidation of Chinese position in India’s view, of course, becomes a matter of concern for her.
Source: Voice of Russia

Birth of a rare animal – aardvark, first time in Russia


12.04.2013, 04:38
An African baby aardvark is being reared in a zoo in the Ural. It was born in February. This is almost a unique case. These rare animals very rarely breed in captivity.As such, the aardvark does not have any close relatives. Besides, this exotic beast with the body of an ant-eater, rabbit ears, pig snout and the tail of a kangaroo was itself on the brink of extinction in the beginning of the 21st century. That an aardvark was born in a zoo in the Ural city of Yekaterinburg is considered to be sheer luck by zoologists. In zoos in foreign lands, the cases of birth of these unusual mammals may be counted on the tips of one’s fingers.
Now, the baby aardvark weighs nearly 8 pounds and has grown to 90 cm. The mother feeds her little one and the baby is doing well. It looks like this exotic baby animal has already adapted to the cold, although the natural environment for aardvarks is the hot Africa.Experts worried for the life of the baby for the first five days. The baby was not getting up on its feet at all. And it's not just the fact, that after birth, aardvarks move with great difficulty. The calf was just too weak – it was born a little prematurely. It needed special care. After all, its weight at birth was slightly more than 1900 grams.
Before and immediately after the birth of the baby, the zoo workers and veterinarians kept a round-the-clock watch. An infrared camera was installed in the cage to be able to notice the labour in time; and then, to track the status of the female and her newborn calf.
Source: Voice of Russia

The number of victims of the earthquake in Japan reaches 16


13.04.2013, 08:52
The number of victims of a massive earthquake of magnitude 6.0 which occurred on Saturday in southern Japan has increased to 16.
All the victims were in the prefectures of Hyogo and Osaka. The epicenter of the earthquake was located in the Awaji Island in the Inland Sea of Japan, and the focus lies at a depth of 10 km. Many of the wounded are elderly people who were injured after heavy objects fell on them. Significant damage in the area of the disaster is not reported. The footage broadcast by Japanese TV shows damage to the roofs of some houses, but no collapsed building. Chief Cabinet Secretary of Japan Esihide Suga stressed that the nuclear power plants in the area were not affected. When the government set up a special crisis headquarters, which continues to collect data after the disaster. Seismologists have warned of high risk of new aftershocks in Awaji for up to a week.
Source: Voice of Russia

Probe into childrens' "free" online games

Brendan Cole
12.04.2013, 18:59
The UK Office of Fair Trading is investigating whether kids are being unfairly pressured or encouraged to pay for so-called "free" internet and app-based games. VoR's Brendan Cole spoke to Andrew Wooden, news editor at the gadget website T3.
Source: Voice of Russia

60 years of James Bond

Tom Spender
12.04.2013, 18:35
It's 60 years since Ian Fleming's first James Bond novel, Casino Royale, was published on April 13, 1953. But while many of Fleming's books cast the Soviet Union in the role of villain, some of the film versions sought to make the Bond stories less overtly political. VoR's Tom Spender reports.
It is one of Hollywood's most successful franchises, but it all started sixty years today with a book.That was when Ian Fleming's first James Bond novel Casino Royale first hit the shelves.
Source: Voice of Russia

Russia issues blacklist of US officials

 
13.04.2013, 12:46
Russia has published its own blacklist of US officials banned from entering the country in retaliation for Washington's move to name 18 Russians who allegedly committed human rights abuses.
"The war of lists is not our choice, but we cannot ignore outright blackmail," said the Russian foreign ministry in a statement, which includes a list of 18 US officials "implicated in human rights violations."The list released by the US Treasury Friday names 16 Russians allegedly linked to the death of jailed lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, as well as two Chechens tied to other alleged rights abuses, all of whom are now barred from travelling to the US or holding assets there under the 2012 Sergei Magnitsky Act.
Source: Voice of Russia

Friday, April 12, 2013

Russian doctors returned sight to a green monkey


21.02.2013, 15:08
Russian doctors in the city of Novosibirsk conducted a unique eye operation. Their patient was not a man but a green monkey. Veterinarians were able to return sight to the almost blind animal. For the surgery, the 14-year-old monkey named Elsa was brought from a zoo in Krasnoyarsk - another Siberian city which is a thousand kilometers away from Novosibirsk.
Russian doctors in the city of Novosibirsk conducted a unique eye operation. Their patient was not a man but a green monkey. Veterinarians were able to return sight to the almost blind animal.For the surgery, the 14-year-old monkey named Elsa was brought from a zoo in Krasnoyarsk - another Siberian city which is a thousand kilometers away from Novosibirsk. The zoo staff had lately noticed that something was disturbing the monkey. She had become less mobile, rarely ever moving from enclosure to enclosure. Even at the zoo, the doctors had diagnosed Elsa with "cataract”. Moreover, according to the veterinarians, this disease is as common among monkeys as in humans and that it had affected both the eyes of monkey, said veterinary ophthalmologist Kira Kondakova.
Source: Voice of Russia

Thailand: World center for contraband ivory trade


1.03.2013, 11:51
There is a ban on ivory trade in the world, but in Thailand, such transactions are still permitted say concerned environmentalists. The World Wildlife Fund noted that Thailand has become an international center for trade in contraband ivory, bringing huge profits to the Chinese.
There is a ban on ivory trade in the world, but in Thailand, such transactions are still permitted say concerned environmentalists. The World Wildlife Fund noted that Thailand has become an international center for trade in contraband ivory, bringing huge profits to the Chinese. The World Wildlife Fund has collected 500 thousand signatures in 200 countries with a demand to the government of Thailand to put a ban on ivory trade. This letter has been submitted to the Thai government.
Source: Voice of Russia

Physicists from СERN confirm that the particle discovered by them is Higgs's boson


14.03.2013, 17:59
Physicists working at the Large Hadron Collider, on basis of analysis of collected data have concluded that the particle discovered by them in July, 2012 is in reality Higgs’s boson. This was reported by the press service of the European organization for nuclear research CERN.
Physicists working at the Large Hadron Collider, on basis of analysis of collected data have concluded that the particle discovered by them in July, 2012 is in reality Higgs’s boson. This was reported by the press service of the European organization for nuclear research CERN. At the same time, scientists noted that it is still a long way to find out what is type of particle is Higg’s boson. In the summer of last year, physicists from CERN declared that they managed to discover a particle which is in all respects very similar to the particle predicted by the British physicist Peter Higgs thanks to which other elementary particles have weight. However at that time, scientists limited themselves to statements that they managed to discover a similar particle, but not Higgs's boson.
Source: Voice of Russia

Russia goes ahead with 5G submarine project


18.03.2013, 19:30
Work is in progress on the newest fifth-generation nuclear-powered and diesel submarines at Russia's Rubin Central Design Bureau, Rubin head Igor Vilnit said on Monday. The Russian Navy currently relies on third-generation submarines with fourth-generation subs of the Yury Dolgoruky (Project 955 Borey) and St. Petersburg (Project 677 Lada) class just beginning to be adopted for service.
Work is in progress on the newest fifth-generation nuclear-powered and diesel submarines at Russia's Rubin Central Design Bureau, Rubin head Igor Vilnit said on Monday. The Russian Navy currently relies on third-generation submarines with fourth-generation subs of the Yury Dolgoruky (Project 955 Borey) and St. Petersburg (Project 677 Lada) class just beginning to be adopted for service. In addition to Rubin, Defense Ministry research centers and the Navy Institute, as well as Rubin’s partners and contractors, are currently working to develop a basic design of the fifth-generation submarine. The new submarine will have a service life of about 50 years, he said. The fifth generation will be distinguished by its lowered noise, automated control systems, reactor safety, and long-range weapons. The Defence Ministry previously said Russia is planning to develop its fifth-generation submarine by 2020 under a 2011-2020 arms procurement program, to be armed with both ballistic and cruise missiles. Russia also plans to build eight fourth-generation strategic nuclear subs by 2020 and arm them with Bulava submarine-launched ballistic missiles.
Source: Voice of Russia

Mountaineers onto Everest

 
20.03.2013, 17:48
Two Russian climbers intend to make a unique climb to the Everest. They plan to climb the highest peak in the world by taking the as yet untrodden route without oxygen or any means of communication. Nobody has ever been able to conquer the mountain from the south-west wall, and that too on “lightweight”mode.
Two Russian climbers intend to make a unique climb to the Everest. They plan to climb the highest peak in the world by taking the as yet untrodden route without oxygen or any means of communication. Nobody has ever been able to conquer the mountain from the south-west wall, and that too on “lightweight”mode.Alexey Bolotov from the Urals and Denis Urubko, a North Caucasus native are both very experienced climbers and have been climbing mountains since childhood. The Everest has been climbed using different routes, but this time, the climbers have decided to do what is even beyond the limits of extreme sports: just the two of them will take the trip; they will leave the radio at the base camp to reduce the weight of backpacks, they will not take any oxygen or flares too. The level of risk here is very high as Alex and Dennis may not return alive from the climb. Last year, while climbing the K-2, which is the second highest peak after the Chomolungma Mountain, belonging to the 8 km and beyond group of mountains, their friend had died, not from injury, but from pneumonia, that developed due to lack of oxygen. And though the group had doctors he could not be saved.
Source: Voice of Russia

south asia, science, Science and Technology, news

 
25.02.2013, 21:40
Indian launch vehicle PSLV-C 20 on Monday launched seven satellites into orbit, including the Indo-French SARAL and the Canadian NEOSSat, that are to track the movements of the other satellites and asteroids in the geostationary orbit. This was reported by the television channel IBN.
Indian launch vehicle PSLV-C 20 on Monday launched seven satellites into orbit, including the Indo-French SARAL and the Canadian NEOSSat, that are to track the movements of the other satellites and asteroids in the geostationary orbit. This was reported by the television channel IBN. The launch vehicle weighing 229.7 tons and having a length of 44.4 meters was launched with a five minute delay at 18:05 local time / 16:35 Moscow time / from the only launch site in India, located on the island of Sriharikota near the southern coast of the state of Andhra Pradesh . Along with SARAL and NEOSSAT on board were satellites of Austria, the UK and Denmark.The SARAL satellite was developed by the Indian Space Research Organization / ISRO / jointly with the French National Centre for Space Studies / CNES /. It is designed to study the world's oceans, in particular to conduct climate monitoring and to observe ice sheets.
Source: Voice of Russia

Hackers can take control of almost any aircraft with a smartphone - study,

 
12.04.2013, 12:18
Hackers can hack away at the on-board computer of an aircraft to control it with an ordinary Android smartphone.
This was disclosed on Thursday by the magazine Forbes quoting a study by Hugo Teso. Such a scenario was demonstrated in detail at the end of a conference "Hack in the box" for developers of computer protection in Amsterdam . The author of the study is a security consultant for a German company, as well as a commercial pilot in his second profession. In his research, Teso wanted to prove that the systems of protection that are installed on most modern aircraft are very vulnerable
Source: Voice of Russia

Sri Lanka meteorite shows signs of alien life

 
12.04.2013, 09:13
Researchers in the United Kingdom have announced traces of biological entities that could point to the presence of alien life in the fragments of a meteorite.
628 fragments of the meteorite were collected from Polonnaruwa, Sri-Lanka where it fell on 29 December last year. Scientists from the British Institute in Cardiff subjected biological analysis of fragments. On the rocks are clearly visible traces of melting that are characteristic of debris passing through the Earth's atmosphere. The results showed a high content of carbonaceous organic matter. Apart from this, deeply integrated in the surrounding mineral matrix of the stone fragments were found round shaped structures, similar to fossilised algae. Scientists believe they have found the organic structures of alien origin (and are not terrestrial contaminants), as they are located deep inside the stones. Moreover, the nitrogen content in the fragments is abnormally low to be of terrestrial origin.
Source: Voice of Russia

Who will become an astronaut?

 
12.04.2013, 08:24
A pilot, a doctor, a programmer ... who gets preference in the preparation of astronauts? Who chooses the "unearthly" profession and who is left behind? "Voice of Russia"’s correspondent spoke to the candidates aspiring to become astronauts and tried to figure out what distinguishes the current residents of the Cosmonaut Training Center from their predecessors.
At the very beginning of the space age, the list of requirements for the astronauts read: height - below 170 cm, profession - test pilot, age – below 30 years. Of course, there were many other selection criteria related to physical and mental health. But one thing was clear: in order to go to space, it was necessary to have a high level of flight training.It has now become a common practice to involve not only specialists in various fields of space technology in orbital flights, but also mathematicians, physicists, and engineers. Programmer Peter Dubrov joined the training center a year ago after the first ever open civilian selection. On the Internet, 300 people from all over Russia appeared for the competition. The main requirements were age under 35 years, a university degree and work experience of three years. All those who passed this stage were invited to go in for physical tests. Only eight people were able to withstand the trials. Now they have joined the team of the cosmonauts. But this does not mean that all of them will fly into space, explains Peter Dubrov.
Source: Voice of Russia

Homeless tour guides in Bath

Sasha Twining
11.04.2013, 19:45
The Roman city of Bath is known as being affluent and terribly English, yet it also has around 600 homeless people. Now, rough sleepers are acting as tourist guides to earn money. VoR's Sasha Twining spoke to the man behind the idea, Dr Luke Tregidgo.
Source: Voice of Russia

Roman London - major new finds

Brendan Cole
10.04.2013, 21:10
Archaeologists have discovered thousands of Roman artifacts - including a remarkable stash of shoes and leather items - at a site in London's financial district. They're calling the excavation one of the most important in the country ever.
VoR spoke to Michael Marshall, a Roman finds specialist who has been taking part in the dig.“It's really an opportunity for us to look at Roman London in way we haven't been able to before. I'm just fascinated by the scale of excavation, but also by the incredibly good preservation of the findings and the structures that we’ve uncovered. The sight which we're digging, Bloomberg Place, is at the heart of the present day city and also at the heart of the Roman city where the river Walbrook flowed through the city. And the fantastic thing about that for us is because the soil, where the entire archeology is, is incredibly wet, oxygen can't get to the artifacts. That means that all the metal hasn’t corroded, all the leather objects haven't rotted away.”
Source: Voice of Russia

G8 warnings over N Korea and Syria

Tom Spender
11.04.2013, 21:00
Foreign ministers from the G8 group of nations have been meeting in London and discussing in particular the rising tensions on the Korean peninsula and the continuing crisis in Syria. VoR's Tom Spender was at the news conference given by Foreign Secretary William Hague and sent this report.
Source: Voice of Russia

Russia's NGOs: cloak and daggers?

Dmitry Babich
11.04.2013, 19:28
The recent disputes over Russian NGOs financed from abroad are raging on as the parties concerned are each doggedly repeating their own arguments without listening to what the other side has to say. VoR's political commentator, Dmitry Babich gives his opinion.
Members of the Human Rights Center “Memorial”, which was founded by academician Andrei Sakharov, and liberal Western media outlets keep recalling the sinister meaning the expression ‘foreign agent’ had under Stalin. In their turn, critics of anti-Putin NGOs say the Russian law de facto imitates the US Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938 which is still in force and fully observed.
Source: Voice of Russia

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

More than 680 people were executed in 2012 across the world: Amnesty International


10.04.2013, 15:10
Human rights group Amnesty International today announced that 682 people were executed in various countries of the world in 2012. In spite of growth in executions in some countries, a global tendency of gradual decrease in capital punishment is visible, the rights’ group said in its annual report. According to their data the number of countries, which have excluded capital punishment from their legislation, has risen to 97.
Last year, highest number of executions were carried out in China, followed by Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, USA and Yemen.Amnesty International has again called for totally abolishing capital punishment in the world. The rights group believes that often the capital punishment is used not to curb crimes, but as a ‘populist measure and a tool of oppression’.
Source: Voice of Russia

UK's search and rescue sold to US


26.03.2013, 15:58
Britain's search and rescue service, which employs Prince William as a helicopter pilot, will be taken out of military control and run by a private US firm. The government said it had signed a £1.6 billion ($2.4 billion, 1.9 billion euro) contract with Texas-based Bristow Helicopters.
The Royal Air Force (RAF) and the Royal Navy have run the rescue service for more than 70 years, but will now withdraw and retire their fleet of Sea King helicopters.The US firm will provide emergency air support for climbers, walkers and people who find themselves in trouble at sea. The contract is set to run from 2015 to 2026.

UK MPs warn of civil war after Afghan pullout

10.04.2013, 14:17
A committee of British MPs say Afghanistan could descend into civil war amid a Taliban resurgence after multinational forces pull out after 2014, unless the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) are given continuing training and equipment.
The Commons Defence Select Committee report into the future of Afghanistan says: "We remain concerned that, as withdrawal and the final handover to the ANSF draws near, violence levels have not fallen. "The lack of progress in reducing violence does not auger well for improving security and economic development on a long-term sustainable basis".
Source: Voice of Russia

UK MPs warn of civil war after Afghan pullout

10.04.2013, 14:17
A committee of British MPs say Afghanistan could descend into civil war amid a Taliban resurgence after multinational forces pull out after 2014, unless the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) are given continuing training and equipment.
The Commons Defence Select Committee report into the future of Afghanistan says: "We remain concerned that, as withdrawal and the final handover to the ANSF draws near, violence levels have not fallen. "The lack of progress in reducing violence does not auger well for improving security and economic development on a long-term sustainable basis".
Source: Voice of Russia

Musharraf treason case adjourned

Brendan Cole
9.04.2013, 19:48
A treason case against Pakistan’s former military ruler Pervez Musharraf was adjourned on Tuesday. Lawyers allege that Musharraf, who aims to run in May's parliamentary elections, committed treason by suspending the constitution and sacking the entire higher judiciary in 2007.
Source: Voice of Russia

Anonymous, Israel trade hacking hits on Day of Remembrance

Rob Sachs
10.04.2013, 01:20
WASHINGTON – Israelis commemorated Yom Hashoah, or the Day of Remembrance, on Monday. It's a national day of reflecting on the 6 million Jews lost in the Holocaust. But members of the hacking group Anonymous used the occasion to infiltrate some Israeli service and post anti-Israeli slogans on their websites.
The operation was dubbed “Op Israel.” The attack was quickly repelled and even a counter attack was launched on the site Anonymous had used to set up for the attack, reconfiguring it to play the Israeli national anthem.Host Rob Sachs spoke with Julie Ryan, an associate professor of engineering management and systems engineering at George Washington University, to look into this incident more and tease out what it says about the strength of Anonymous and Israel to engage in cyber warfare of this kind.
Source: Voice of Russia

China bird flu deaths rise to 9

Victoria Mashkova
10.04.2013, 17:20
WASHINGTON – The death toll from China’s new bird flu strain grew to nine this week while the number of cases increased to 33 more than a week after officials detected the H7N9 virus in humans for the first time, according to AFP.
Voice of Russia correspondent Victoria Mashkova reports:media
Source: Voice of Russia

Friday, April 5, 2013

UK tax threat over Pakistan aid

Tim Walklate
4.04.2013, 14:27
Britain should not go ahead with doubling its aid to Pakistan - its biggest recipient - unless Islamabad makes its wealthier citizens pay more taxes, an influential committee of British MPs have said. The aid threat is signficant as the UK has a large ethnic Pakistani population.
Britain is due to double its assistance to Pakistan to £446 million ($675 million) in 2014-2015, making it the biggest recipient of British aid.But parliament's International Development Committee said it was unfair for Britain to fund health and education projects unless Pakistan's new government, due to be elected in May, tackles "rife" corruption and tax evasion.
Source: Voice of Russia

Zuckerberg unveils FB 'Home' for Androids


4.04.2013, 22:28
Facebook on Thursday unveiled a new mobile software suite which enables FB aficionados to make the social network their 'home' on their Android smartphone. Chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said the new software would allow Android devices to be "designed around people and not apps."
Facebook Home is a free interface US Android users can download as of April 12. It's planned to hit Europe later this year.FB fans will be able to see the latest content shared by their friends when they switch on their phones.
Source: Voice of Russia

Expert: Health insurers see profit in millions of newly insured

Carmen Russell-Sluchansky
4.04.2013, 23:54
WASHINGTON – Vermont has published the first proposed health rates in the country to go into effect after the Affordable Care Act goes into effect. Although Vermont may not be the best state to represent the overall impact on individual health insurance costs, those first signs suggest rates that are in line with current rates.
Host Carmen Russell-Sluchansky spoke with Kaiser Health News reporter Philip Galewitz to discuss the story and other things we can expect after the ACA goes into effect October 1.media
Source: Voice of Russia

Thursday, April 4, 2013

N Korea - usual bluster or real threat?

Brendan Cole
3.04.2013, 19:10
North Korea’s blocking of South Korean access to a joint industrial zone and its threat to launch an attack on the US has ramped tensions to a level where US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has spoken of a "real and clear danger" from Pyongyang. VoR’s Brendan Cole has this report.
Scott Snyder is the Senior Fellow for Korea Studies at the Washington think-tank the Council on Foreign Relations. We asked if he believes the US should take the North's threat more seriously than on previous occasions.media
Source: Voice of Russia

US tells N. Korea to drop threats after nuclear warning

 
4.04.2013, 02:44
WASHINGTON (AFP) - The White House on Wednesday told North Korea to stop making threats after the isolated state dramatically upped its warlike rhetoric and said it had approved nuclear strikes on the United States.
"We've seen today's statement by North Korea, again making unhelpful and unconstructive threats," said National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden."It is yet another offering in a long line of provocative statements that only serve to further isolate North Korea from the rest of the international community and undermine its goal of economic development.
Source: Voice of Russia

Mobile phones turn 40

Daniel Cinna
3.04.2013, 19:49
Forty years ago Motorola engineer Martin Cooper made the first mobile phone call by calling a competitor at another telecoms company, telling them he was speaking from "a real cellular telephone". VoR’s Daniel Cinna reports on the legacy of Cooper's first call.
Source: Voice of Russia

Health and Safety 'nonsense claims'

Juliet Spare
3.04.2013, 20:02
So-called 'Health and Safety culture' is often mocked in Britain, and now it turns out that the very rules and regulations being derided are also often used as an excuse for service shortcomings. VoR's Juliet Spare rounds up some of the 'nonsense' excuses proffered in the name of 'Health and Safety'....
Source: Voice of Russia

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Russian helicopters are in much demand


3.04.2013, 09:42
There is a growing demand for Russian helicopters in the world. Iraq has decided to increase to 40 the number of Mi-28N "Night Hunter" helicopters it plans to acquire in addition to the arms for which it has already signed the contract with Russia. Peru will also buy 24 Mi-171 Russian helicopters.
There is a growing demand for Russian helicopters in the world. Iraq has decided to increase to 40 the number of Mi-28N "Night Hunter" helicopters it plans to acquire in addition to the arms for which it has already signed the contract with Russia. Peru will also buy 24 Mi-171 Russian helicopters.The Peru Ministry of Defence plans to use Russian Mi-171 transport helicopters in the valleys of the Apurimac, Ene and Mantaro rivers to combat terrorism and drug trafficking. These helicopters can carry up to 26 passengers or cargo weighing up to 2 tons.
Source: Voice of Russia