From Russia With News

From Russia With News

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 14th February, 2020) This Friday, we cover a Google Russia reshuffle, the Tretyakov Gallery's disinfection schedule, St. Valentine gifts in Russia, marriage tips from a politician and, on a more serious note, the public discussion around the draft law against domestic violence.


Google has appointed David Munro Sneddon the new head of the company's Russian office. He will be replacing Carlo d'Asaro Biondo, who, according to the press service, is leaving Google.

Sneddon previously worked as the head of Google Technical Solutions in Europe, the middle East and Africa.

Yulia Solovyova,, who served as head of the regional office several years ago, will remain head of business operations on EMEA developing markets, which includes Russia.


Telegram channel Mash reported earlier in the day that the Tretyakov Gallery, one of the most popular museums in the Russian capital, was planning a massive disinfection operation in connection with the new coronavirus. However, the Tretyakov Gallery press service told Sputnik that there was "nothing going on in the gallery. All is quiet."

The only thing the museum said it had planned was regular anti-rodent sweeps.

Fewer and fewer Russians are willing to celebrate St. Valentine's Day or splurge on gifts, according to a study by payment system Mir.

Fifty-six percent of the 1,200 people questioned for the study said they were not planning to celebrate St. Valentine's with their significant others, which is 10 percentage points higher than last year. The most popular price range for gifts this year was between 1,000 and 3,000 rubles ($15-$50).

As for the choice of gift, 52 percent of the men surveyed said they planned on giving flowers as gift, 24 percent chose perfume or beauty products, and 20 percent were going to pick out some jewelry.

Thirty-two percent of the women surveyed said their plans included cooking a special dinner, while 25 percent said they would buy perfume or beauty products.

The Ural Federal District is the bastion of romance, as 54 percent of its population more than anywhere else in Russia intend to celebrate St. Valentine's Day. In the Far East, only 28 percent want to celebrate.

Vladimir Zhirinovsky, the leader of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR), on Friday hosted a discussion about love and gave advice on marriage.

The politician believed that money was the first source of conflict between newlyweds.

"This is where it starts. 'Who's paying for this?' It is a problem," the LDPR leader said.

Divorce is not always the best answer, Zhirinovsky continued, and struggling couples should explore the possibility of living apart first before making such a drastic decision.

"So, do not buy a two-bedroom apartment, buy a one-bedroom place and a smaller one in the same house," the politician said.

The LDPR leader also suggested introducing sex education lessons in Russian schools.

"We do not have anything like that. It's all up to the street to do the teaching. No one is asking you to corrupt [students] at these lessons, to say something like that. But teach them, explain things to them. I have always called for reintroducing 'family education' if you are scared of the word 'sex,'" Zhirinovsky said.

Petr Tolstoy, the deputy chairman of the lower chamber of the Russian parliament, believes that the draft law against domestic violence "makes no sense" as there are already several legal options for victims.

"Of course, our country, just like any country in the world ... has this problem of domestic, everyday violence. And, of course, it is unacceptable," the lawmaker said, adding, however, that some of the notions mentioned in the draft law such as psychological or economic abuse could be subject to misinterpretation.

"So, you come home, have some borscht, and not compliment it or say it was good. What is this? It is psychological violence. Or your wife tells you, 'I need new winter boots.' You say: 'I am sorry, honey, I have no money at the moment.' This is economic abuse ... So there are many ways this could be interpreted," the lawmaker said.

Tolstoy had questioned the use of restraining orders proposed in the draft law by pointing out that the constitution guaranteed every person the right to a place to live. But a husband ordered to stay away from his wife and a child might have nowhere to go, so there would be no way to implement this part of the law, Tolstoy argued.

President Vladimir Putin has said in the past he has a somewhat mixed attitude to the draft law. According to him, there should be a public discussion, an attempt to map out the potential results of such a law, and only then should a decision be made.

In the northwestern city of Kaliningrad, a criminal case was opened against a man who set his ex-wife on fire out of jealousy. The woman was able to put out the flames and ask neighbors for help, so she received timely medical treatment.

In the city of Volgograd in southwestern Russia, a man attacked an ex-husband of his significant other with a backsword. The former husband came to visit his ex on Thursday evening, had an argument with her new lover, which escalated into a fight. In a video made by the neighbors, one of the men can be seen picking up the saber and charging.

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