In Veliky Novgorod, a town in the North-West of Russia, the trial began of a local resident who attempted to prevent the construction of a domestic waste dump near his native village.
The construction began in October last year near the village of Chaika not far from Veliky Novgorod. Soon after the construction equipment was brought there, someone threw a grenade at one of the excavators at night. Benzine was poured on another excavator which was burned down, and one of the tractors was damaged by gun shots. Although nobody was injured in these actions, considerable damage was done to the construction equipment.
A few days after that extraordinary incident the police detained Ilya Tarasov, a resident of the village. The investigation believes that he was the one who used such "guerilla" methods in fighting for the purity of the environment. If the court confirms the data of the investigators, the man may be sentenced to imprisonment for a term of up to 5 years. Nevertheless, construction of the dump was halted, and nobody knows whether or not it will be continued.
Several years ago, a prominent Indonesian businessman who now resides in Canada, insisted on meeting me in a back room of one of Jakarta's posh restaurants. An avid reader of mine, he 'had something urgent to tell me', after finding out that our paths were going to be crossing in this destroyed and hopelessly polluted Indonesian capital.
Presidential candidate Ksenia Sobchak, who was accredited for the press conference by Vladimir Putin from Dozhd (Rain) television channel, asked Putin about competition at the coming election
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