Head of the Audit Chamber of Russia Sergei Stepashin refuted the claims that Cyprus is a "tax paradise" and a refuge of Russian mafia. He said in an interview with RIA Novosti that these claims "are an exaggeration and are intentionally fanned up by the press". During his meetings at a number of departments of the capital of Cyprus Stepashin, as he said, made sure that great work is being done in the Republic of Cyprus to organise "transparency of banking activity" and of other spheres in which breaches of law can be registered. The head of the Audit Chamber of Russia spoke highly of the meeting of the heads of European and international control-audit bodies which is finishing its work in the Cypriot city of Limassol on Tuesday. He highlighted the importance of coordination of the operation of control-audit bodies in the struggle against terrorism and in countering money laundering and export of capital. On Tuesday Sergei Stepashin is expected to be received by president of Cyprus Glafcos Clerides and chairman of parliament Dimitris Christofias.
Forest fires in Siberia have been raging for three months already. They have become a disaster not only of Russian, but of global scale. The fires have already scorched 12 million hectares of land