Vladimir Putin personally authorized a secret spy agency operation to support a “mentally unstable” Donald Trump in the 2016 US presidential election during a closed session of Russia’s national security council, according to what are assessed to be leaked Kremlin documents. The key meeting took place on 22 January 2016, the papers suggest, with the Russian president, his spy chiefs and senior ministers all present.
Nineteen bodies have been found following a plane crash in a remote area of far-eastern Russia, authorities have said. The Antonov An-26 aircraft carrying 28 people crashed on Tuesday near its destination town of Palana in the region of Kamchatka. The emergency ministry in Russia said the remains of 19 victims have been found so far, and one of them has been identified.
A plane with 28 people on board has gone missing in Russia’s Far East region, the country’s emergencies ministry has said. The Antonov An-26 plane, with 22 passengers and six crew, was flying from the city of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky to the village of Palana when it missed a scheduled communication, local emergency officials said. According to the local transport ministry, it also disappeared from the radars.
A Russian military ship fired warning shots at a British Royal Navy destroyer after it entered Russian waters in the Black Sea, and a Russian jet dropped bombs in its path as a warning, Interfax cited Russia’s defense ministry as saying on Wednesday. The HMS Defender left Russian waters soon after the incident, having ventured as much as 3 kilometers (2 miles) inside.
President Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin sat down in Geneva for a widely anticipated summit, where despite the deeply strained U.S.-Russia relationship, both leaders claimed to have a “positive” dialogue. The White House said the goal of the summit was to continue work toward a “stable” and “predictable” relationship with Russia. “There is no substitute for face-to-face dialogue between leaders. None,” Biden said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law on Monday that formalizes Russia’s exit from the Open Skies arms control treaty, a pact that allows unarmed surveillance flights over member countries. Russia had hoped that Putin and U.S. President Joe Biden could discuss the treaty when they meet later this month at a summit in Geneva. But the Biden administration informed Moscow that it would not re-enter the pact.
At least two European airlines have been refused permission to fly to Moscow by Russian authorities after the carriers requested to fly an alternative route bypassing Belarusian airspace. Russia’s move, underlining Moscow’s support for Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko’s regime, comes as the European Union mulls fresh sanctions against Belarus following what leaders have described as the state-sanctioned hijacking of a passenger flight over Belarus last Sunday.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov struck a polite tone Wednesday as they sat down for the first face-to-face engagement between high-level U.S. and Russian officials since President Joe Biden took office. The discussion on the sidelines of the Arctic Council Ministerial in Reykjavik, Iceland, lasted more than 90 minutes and touched on a wide range of issues underlying the tense relationship between Washington and Moscow.
A court in the Russian city of Yekaterinburg jailed its former mayor for nine days on Wednesday after finding him guilty of using social media to urge people to protest for the release of jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny. Yevgeny Roizman, who served as mayor of Russia’s fourth-largest city from 2013 to 2018, was charged with organizing an illegal rally after he urged his nearly 500,000 followers on Twitter to take to the streets.
Seven children and a teacher have been killed in a shooting at a school in the Russian city of Kazan, officials say. More than 20 others, mostly children, were reportedly wounded. A 19-year-old suspect was detained. The attack happened 820km (510 miles) east of Moscow, in the mainly Muslim republic of Tatarstan. Responding to the shooting, Russian President Vladimir Putin said he would review the country’s gun control laws.