An explosion has caused a fire at a Russian biological research facility that’s one of only two centers in the world known for housing samples of the smallpox virus. The blast occurred Monday during repair work of a sanitary inspection room at the Russian State Centre for Research on Virology and Biotechnology, known as Vector, near the Russian city of Novosibirsk in Siberia, the center said in a statement.
A Russian passenger plane has made an emergency landing in a cornfield near Moscow after striking a flock of birds. Twenty-three people were injured in the incident, which saw the plane land with its engines off and landing gear retracted, health officials said. The Ural Airlines Airbus 321 was traveling to Simferopol in Crimea when it hit the flock of gulls shortly after take-off, disrupting its engines.
Two people have been killed in an explosion at a naval test facility in northern Russia, officials say. The victims were civilian specialists. At least four others – both military and civilian personnel – were injured. The facility, in the north-western Arkhangelsk region in the Russian Arctic, has not been named. The blast occurred during testing of a rocket engine, officials said, adding that the explosion did not release harmful materials or radiation.
The US has formally withdrawn from a key nuclear treaty with Russia, raising fears of a new arms race. The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) was signed by US President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in 1987. It banned missiles with ranges between 500 and 5,500 km (310-3,400 miles). But earlier this year the US and Nato accused Russia of violating the pact by deploying a new type of cruise missile, which Moscow has denied.
President Donald Trump has offered help to Russia in combating wildfires raging in Siberia, the Russian Embassy said on Wednesday. During a phone call between the two leaders, Trump offered American assistance to tame the fires that have engulfed 6.7 million acres of the Siberian woods. For now, Putin told Trump that Russian military aircraft were deployed to control the situation.
A prominent Russian Instagram influencer was found dead from knife wounds on Friday in a suitcase in her rented Moscow apartment, police said. Ekaterina Karaglanova, 24, was discovered after her family reported that she had failed to contact them for several days. Ms Karaglanova, who had more than 85,000 followers on Instagram, had recently graduated as a doctor.
A doctor for Alexei Navalny, Russia’s most prominent opposition figure, says he has been discharged from hospital. Mr Navalny, who was detained last week, will now be transferred back to jail. Initial reports suggested that he had suffered an acute allergic reaction. Mr Navalny was jailed for 30 days last week after calling for unauthorized protests, which took place on Saturday.
Russia carried out what it said was its first long-range joint air patrol in the Asia Pacific region with China on Tuesday, a mission that triggered hundreds of warning shots, according to South Korean officials, and a strong protest from Japan. Seoul and Tokyo, who both scrambled jets to intercept the Russian-Chinese mission, accused Russia and China of violating their airspaces, an allegation Moscow and Beijing denied.
Fourteen Russian sailors on board a submersible military vessel were killed after a fire broke out and they suffocated on the fumes. The deep-sea research vessel was carrying out a survey in Russia’s territorial waters when the blaze erupted on Monday, the defense ministry said. President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday called the loss of 14 navy officers in the fire a “big loss”, ordering a full investigation into what happened.
A Russian investigative journalist who was charged with drug dealing, widely seen as fabricated charges, has been freed after a widespread public outcry and media rebellion against the case. Journalist Ivan Golunov was arrested last Thursday by police in Moscow who said they found mephedrone on Golunov and cocaine at his flat. He was then charged over the weekend with possessing drugs with intent to supply. Golunov denied all the accusations and said the drugs had been planted on him.