Greek rescuers have taken the crew off the Varyag aircraft-carrier in the Aegean Sea. Three Russians, three Ukrainians and a Filipino got stranded in the ship as it broke loose from tow before its construction was finished, to roam the sea. The crew are safe and sound. Wind force 10 is carrying the vessel, rudderless and with no engines, to Euboea island, report Greek merchant marine spokesmen. Three tugboats and another Greek ship are flocking round to get the Varyag in tug or anchor it. The aircraft-carrier broke loose as it was being tugged to China. Built for the Soviet Navy, it went over to Ukraine after the USSR collapsed, and was sold to a Chinese private entrepreneur, who intended to lay it up as recreation centre, complete with a casino and several restaurants. Experts are not sure just why the ship came off the tug.
US military analysts are concerned about the appearance of a new Russian sniper rifle known as T-5000
On December 14, President Putin holds his annual Q&A session with Russian and foreign journalists. This conference is considered to be the beginning of his presidential campaign