News of the Day: 23 December 2021

The Moscow Times: Russia on Thursday confirmed 25,667 Covid-19 infections and 1,002 deaths.

RFE/RL: The Moscow City Court started hearings on a prosecutor’s request to shut down one of Russia’s oldest rights watchdogs, the Memorial Human Rights Center. Some 25 journalists were allowed to follow the December 23 hearing from a special room outside the courtroom.

RFE/RL: A court in Moscow has extended the pretrial detention of the former leader of a regional organization for jailed opposition activist Aleksei Navalny in Bashkortostan. The Basmanny district court ruled of December 23 that Lilia Chanysheva must stay in pretrial detention at least until April 9, 2022.

Meduza: Meduza’s sources say that recruiters have started mobilizing mercenaries for a “combat trip to the Donbas.” Whether or not they’ll actually fight on the frontline remains unknown. Meduza special correspondent Liliya Yapparova spoke with the mercenaries themselves and discovered that they, too, are skeptical.

The Moscow Times: Inventor, scientist, educator, entrepreneur and philanthropist Dmitry Zimin died in Switzerland at the age of 88 on Wednesday. He had been undergoing treatment for cancer for many years.

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