The Media Mirror – Today's Russian press review

Tuesday’s Russian press focuses on the results of the parliamentary election in Poland, the Nord-Ost tragedy, and an interview with the Georgian Defence Minister.

Rossiyskaya Gazeta runs a biography of Donald Tusk, the leader of the Civic Platform party that won the Polish parliamentary election. He suffered from poverty as a child, says the paper. That is why he is so keen on private property, liberalisation of the economy, free market and liberal democracy. Donald Tusk is an experienced politician of a more balanced nature than the Kaczynski brothers adds the paper. 

Vremya Novostei has an interview with Aleksandr Lipatov from the Institute of Slavic Studies in Moscow. He says Poland’s foreign policy will be changing in the next few months. There will be a more balanced approach to relations with Russia and Germany based on compromise rather than confrontation, and a more careful stance in the co-operation with the U.S. based on Polish national interest. There will be doubts about the U.S. missile defence and efforts to withdraw Polish troops from Iraq. 

Kommersant says that first of all Poland will start repairing its relations with the European Union. With a 60 per cent majority in parliament, Donald Tusk as Prime Minister will overcome any Presidential veto. This will help improve relations with Germany and Russia. It will also facilitate further privatisation and liberalisation of the economy. 

Nezavisimaya Gazeta writes, a decisive role in the election was played by the young. If the turn-out at the previous election was around 40 per cent, this time it reached 55 per cent. The paper says it happened because the young feared they could fall victim to the older generation’s post-Soviet fantasies. The young are more involved in the market economy. Liberal-democratic views are predominant among them. 

Georgia’s Defence Minister Giorgi Baramidze told Vremya Novostei if Georgia joins NATO, its relations with Russia will immediately improve. However, he points out that territorial problems with the unrecognised republics – Abkhazia and Southern Ossetia – jeopardise Georgia’s NATO bid. He says, provided Georgia maintains its territorial integrity, it will not deny any amount of autonomy to these republics. 

Trud writes, five years after the Moscow theatre siege that cost 130 civilian lives, special anti-terrorist units are more experienced and better trained. But the danger remains. So far there is no place on Earth, says the paper, where we can be totally safe from terrorism.