(CNN)Russian President Vladimir Putin’s political party, United Russia, has won a majority in the country’s parliamentary elections.
Michael McFaul explains how Russia became a major theme in the US presidential race
Russia has become one of the major themes of this year’s presidential contest in the United States. While questions about domestic policy typically dominate the race to the White House, Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and the biggest media outlets in the US have regularly focused on Vladimir Putin, the annexation of Crimea, and various acts by Russian intelligence agencies. At Meduza‘s request, former US Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul explains Moscow’s unexpected role in the presidential election.
Turkish president Recep Tayip Ergodan is meeting with “his friend” Vladimir Putin in hopes of turning a fresh page in the two countries’ relations. It is their first meeting since Turkey downed a Russian bomber over Syria last November.
“Your visit, which comes amid a very complicated situation in Turkey, indicates that all of us want to revive our dialogue and restore relations for the sake of the Turkish and Russian peoples,” President Putin said, greeting Erdogan in St. Petersburg.
The local authorities in the city of of Yekaterinburg have embraced the viral video game Pokémon in a big way, electing not to repaint a granite sphere located across from the regional government building on the Iset river embankment. The sphere in question was recently painted by unknown artists to look like a giant “Pokéball,” which players of the augmented-reality game Pokémon Go use to catch “Pokémons.”
“I don’t see any harm in it,” Yekaterinburg Mayor Evgeny Roizman told reporters, adding, “People like to play, and this is how they express their emotions. If this art object isn’t angering anyone, then let it stay there.”
Yekaterinburg officials say they’ve yet to receive any complaints about the “art installation.” The mayor noted that the city might simply wait, and remove the red-and-white paint sometime before August 18, when Yekaterinburg celebrates its founding anniversary.