President Vladimir Putin has appropriated 12 million roubles (an equivalent of about 400,000 dollars, on current rates) from his reserve fund to address the needs of Russian children. According to the Kremlin press service, in the fourth quarter of this year some 6.91 million roubles will be allocated to educational institutions under the Education Ministry and another 5 million roubles, to the Labor Ministry's social services. Also, 3.51 million roubles from the presidential reserve fund will go, in the fourth quarter of 2001, to stimulate children and young people with outstanding talents in various academic fields, arts, and sports (to be given out in 10,000-rouble prizes) and 3 million roubles, to reward teachers who have made a notable contribution to the education of such children (to be given out in 15,000-rouble bonuses). In addition, around 3.5 million roubles has been earmarked by the President for Moscow events to involve gifted kids.
Russian small missile ships - the Grad Sviyazhsk and the Great Ustyug - set off for a mission to the Mediterranean Sea