December 29, 2020
A court in Moscow convicted a former top executive of a Russian state-controlled energy company on espionage charges Tuesday and sentenced her to 15 years in prison.
The Moscow City Court found Karina Tsurkan guilty on charges of spying for the ex-Soviet nation of Moldova while working as a member of the management board of Inter RAO. The energy holding dealing with electric power supply and heat generation has assets in Russia and several other ex-Soviet countries.
Tsurkan headed Inter RAO’s trading division when she was arrested in June 2018. Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB), the main KGB successor agency, accused her of handing over classified information about energy supplies to the Moldovan spy agency. Tsurkan has denied the accusations.
Her trial was held behind closed doors, and details of the charges remained hidden from the public. Her lawyers said they would appeal the verdict.
December 28, 2020
Seventeen people were missing and two others rescued after a Russian fishing boat sank in the Barents Sea, Russian media reported on Monday.
The fishing boat, the Onega, sank near the Novoya Zemlya archipelago with 19 people on board, local news outlets reported, citing the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations.
The ministry attributed the incident to the formation of too much ice on the vessel.
A search and rescue operation is underway, but aircraft has yet to be sent due to bad weather conditions.
December 26, 2020
Russia registered 29,258 new COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, taking its total to 3,021,964, the country’s COVID-19 response center said Saturday.