RussiaToday : News : The Media Mirror – this weekend’s press

Naked electoral Commissioners; the Medvedev generation and how nations divide the Antarctic with a cold pie – all are featured in the Russian newspapers.

ITOGI quotes the Chairman of the Electoral Commission, Victor Churov, who asked election monitors: “how much more transparency do you want? Should I strip the electoral Commissioners naked for you, as the next degree of transparency?”

PROFILE writes that the next phase of Russia’s history will start in May. The building of a new structure of executive power: new positions, responsibilities, appointments. The magazine says, most probably Dmitry Medvedev, will be ruling Russia as President and Vladimir Putin, as Prime minister, will control the executive system governing Russia’s national economy.

OGONIOK writes that the time has come for a more active role for Dmitry Medvedev’s generation. At 42 he is the youngest leader Russia has had for a hundred years. His generation was trapped between the USSR and Russia, and escaped. Fedor Lukianov, 42, writes: “this generation is pragmatic, it doesn’t miss good opportunities, and it has an allergy to showy displays”.

PROFILE writes that nobody in the world doubts that two Russian Captains, Lazarev and Bellinshausen, discovered Antarctica in 1820. But there’s not much unity about who owns what there today. If all the 28 countries that claim various parts of the White Continent make good on their claims simultaneously, the Antarctic ice will turn into a hot spot.

ITOGI writes that the President of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, is on the war path over the U.S.-supported raids of Colombian government troops against FARC guerillas. In Quito and Karakas they say the latest raid was a pre-meditated murder of sleeping people. One of the leftist guerilla group’s leaders perished in that attack.

PROFILE reports, that an alleged arms dealer, Russian citizen Victor Bout, was apprehended in Thailand by DEA agents in a joint sting operation with Thai police. Bout is accused of an attempt to deliver anti-aircraft missiles to the previously mentioned Colombian guerillas. He denies the charges. In a latest development, a Thai newspaper quotes his claim that DEA agents attempted to spirit him away to New York as they did his British friend Andrew Smulian, but he resisted, demanded the presence of a Russian consul and was left in the hands of Thai police.