The permanent movement of electric trains began on a TRANSSIB section from Sviyagino station to the town of Spassk-Dalny (the Russian region on the coast of the Sea of Japan). The press service of the Far Eastern railroad reported that with the commissioning of a new 95 km electrified TRANSSIB section the trains' speed will grow up to 120 km per hour, the train cargoes weight will increase up to 6,000 tons, exploitation expenditures will slash and movement safety will rise. The remaining 175 km of TRANSSIB will be electrified in late 2002. An increase in cargo shipments along the Far Eastern railway by 40 percent is forecast for 2002. According to experts, the goods traffic along the Trans-Siberian mainline will grow due to the recovery of the Far Eastern economy and due to an increase in transit shipments along the Asia-Europe-Asia route.
The remarks from the Pope came as "a very strong step towards degradation," "given the rather massive nature of homosexuality" among the Catholic clergy.