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Noviye Izvestia 'Closes' After Director Fired

Published: March 4, 2003 (Issue # 848)


MOSCOW - Noviye Izvestia published what editors said was its last issue Friday after a business shake-up they claim will put their independence at risk.

Noviye Izvestia, which has been critical of the Kremlin, suspended publication a week ago after publisher Oleg Mitvol fired Igor Golembiovsky from the post of director, citing discrepancies in the company's financial records. Mitvol said Golembiovsky could remain editor in chief.

In a front-page editorial Friday, Golembiovsky's team said it was quitting.

"Obviously, losing control over the newspaper, we are losing the ability to write and publish what we believe is necessary," the paper said.

However, the team said it would try to save the paper over the next month. "We are saying, 'Until later,' instead of a hopeless 'Farewell,'" they wrote.

Other Russian media reported that the editorial team, which controls a 24-percent stake in the paper, was fighting for the right to the newspaper's name and logo in hopes of reviving the publication with new financial backers. Mitvol manages the other 76-percent stake

The newspaper likened its conflict to a 2001 shake-up at NTV television and last year's closure of Berezovsky's TV6 - both caused by business disputes that journalists said were in fact motivated by the Kremlin's desire to stifle criticism.

The international media-freedom watchdog Reporters Without Borders agreed. "Sidelining the editor in chief of Noviye Izvestia and the temporary shutdown of one of the only newspapers critical of the government - that denounces war in Chechnya and human-rights violations - appears too useful to the Kremlin in the run-up to elections to be a coincidence," the group's general secretary, Robert Menard, said in a statement Wednesday.

Parliamentary elections are scheduled for the end of this year, and presidential elections in 2004.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Thursday, Sept. 18


Get your nerd on at Boomfest, St. Petersburg’s answer to the United States’ popular ComicCon. Starting today, this international festival of comics will take over venues throughout the city center and includes exhibitions of comics and illustrations, film screenings, competitions and the chance to meet the genre’s authors, artists and experts.



Friday, Sept. 19


SPIBA’s newest addition to their Cultural Discoveries events is “Handmade in Germany,” an exhibition featuring unique handmade objects of a significantly higher quality than mass-produced items. The work of over 100 German manufacturers will be displayed during the event, which opens today in the Lutheran Church of Saint Peter and Paul on Nevsky Prospekt and runs through Sept. 28.



Saturday, Sept. 20


Starting on Sept. 18 and ending tomorrow is the Extreme Fantasy Wakeboarding Festival in Sunpark by Sredny Suzdalskoye lake in the Ozerki region of the city.


Those after something more laid back can instead head to Jazz and Wine night at TerraVino with legendary jazz guitarist Ildar Kazahanov. 12/14 Admiralteyskaya Emb.



Sunday, Sept. 21


Learn more about African culture and get some exercise during today’s “Djembe and Vuvuzela,” a bike ride starting in Palace Square that includes several stops where riders can listen to the music of Africa or watch short films about the continent. The riders plan to set off at 4 p.m. and all you need to join is a set of wheels.



Monday, Sept. 22


Do you love puppetry? If so, then be sure to go to BTK-Fest, a five-day festival that starts on Sept. 19 celebrating the art. Contemporaries from France, Belgium, the U.K. and other countries will join Russian artists to put on theatrical performances involving a variety of themes, materials and eras. Workshops and meetings are also scheduled for a chance to discuss the artistic medium in further depth.



Tuesday, Sept. 23


Marina Suhih, Director of the External Communications Department at Rostelecom North-West, and Yana Donskaya, HR Director for Northern Capital Gateway are just some of the confirmed participants of today’s round table discussion on “Interaction with Trade Unions” being hosted by SPIBA. Confirm your attendance with SPIBA by Sept. 22.


Kino Expo 2014, an international film industry convention, will be at LenExpo from today until Sept. 26. The third largest exhibition of film equipment in the world, the expo focuses on not only Russia but former Soviet republics as well.



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