Russia’s Emergency Situations Ministry says the search of the rubble from a partially collapsed apartment building in the city of Magnitorgorsk has ended. The death toll stands at 39.
The population of Dikson, Russia's most northerly port, has dwindled from 5,000 in the Soviet era to some 300 today. The development of shipping routes through the Russian Arctic offers some promise of renewal, but most residents see little future in this Siberian outpost.
In Romania's capital, a new children's cancer hospital is under construction, financed entirely through private donations. The founders of the NGO behind the project, Give Life, say they're doing the work the state should be doing.
Russia has brought formal charges of espionage against retired U.S. Marine Paul Whelan, the Interfax news agency reported. A conviction carries a potential prison sentence of 20 years. Britain has cautioned Russia against playing “diplomatic chess games.”
Russia’s Prosecutor-General's office said on January 3 that Aleksei Kuznetsov, a former regional finance official, will face trial in Russia on multiple counts of fraud, misuse of funds, and money laundering following a long legal battle.
Russian authorities have arrested and brought charges of hooliganism against Aleksandr Shabarchin, a supporter of Russian opposition politician and anticorruption campaigner Aleksei Navalny, in connection with his alleged involvement in erecting an effigy of Russian President Vladimir Putin in central Perm in November.
Stored for decades, Nazi military hardware captured by the Red Army is destined to serve God and country in Russia. Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu declared that “every square meter” of the cathedral, under construction in Patriot Park 70 km outside of Moscow, should be symbolic, and to that end, “we will pour the steps of the cathedral from German trophy hardware."
The mayor of Lviv and head of Ukraine’s parliamentary faction Self Help Andriy Sadovyi has officially announced his candidacy in Ukraine’s presidential election on March 31. Former security service chief Valentyn Nalyvaichenko has also declared his intent to run, pledging if elected to decline presidential immunity and move to end immunity for judges and members of parliament. (in Russian, Current Time TV)
Ukraine’s state-owned national oil and gas company Naftogaz has reported 15,496 million cubic feet of gas extracted for January - December, 2018, a 25-year record. The company has also commissioned 69 new wells and improved the effectiveness of existing ones, noting that deposits accounting for 95% of the country’s total reserves are 87% depleted. (Ukrainian Service)
A regional court in Kazakhstan has upheld a lower court’s decision to deny bail to Mukhtar Dzahakishev, the former boss of Kazakh uranium giant Kazatomprom. Activists in Kazakhstan and abroad claim he has been imprisoned on political grounds.