“I know that it (a new contract with Capello) has practically been agreed. And in any case I would support it,” he added. Russia will in Brazil take part in a World Cup finals for the first time in 12 years, a huge boost for the country whose failure to reach the finals in 2006 and 2010 was seen as a national humiliation. Capello took over the Russian national squad in 2012 following the resignation of Dutchman Dick Advocaat who quit after Russia’s humiliating first round exit at Euro 2012. Mutko told the Sport Express daily earlier this week that Russia’s Football Union (RFU) should sign a new contract with Capello as soon as possible. “All the details of the new contract with Capello have already been finalised,” Mutko was quoted as saying. “The RFU chiefs should get a move on and sign it. We should clarify Capello’s future before the 2014 World Cup.” Meanwhile, RFU president Nikolai Tolstykh also said that the signing of a new contract with Capello was one of the priorities of the country’s football ruling body. “Capello’s new contract is without doubt one of our top priorities,” Tolstykh told the R-Sport. “The work is going on at full swing.” The 67-year-old Capello, who refused to talk about his future plans before the end of the 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign, meanwhile has indirectly confirmed his intention to stay at the helm of Russia’s national side until the end of the 2018 World Cup. “I already rejected an offer to take over the Italian squad,” he was quoted as saying by ITAR-TASS. “I will be focused on my work with the Russian team until 2018.” After the match Capello expressed satisfaction with the Russian side, adding however that they all still had plenty of work to do to be competitive in Brazil. “I’m satisfied with our performance in this qualifying campaign,” Capello said after the match at Baku. “We finished in first place having had such a strong opponent as Portugal in our group. “We played well in all of the matches except the game in Northern Ireland (where they lost 1-0 in August) where we performed unsatisfactorily.
Some political observers felt jailing Navalny could empower the opposition and make him into a martyr, reports Russias official RIA Novosti news agency. In the interim, Navalny ran in the high profile Moscow mayoral race where he won a solid and some say legitimizing 27 percent of the vote against a Putin-allied incumbent. His campaign touched on widespread corruption under President Putin and anti-migrant sentiments , reports Agence France-Presse. Since the court today did not overturn Mr. Navalnys guilty verdict, he is unable to run for public office until his suspended sentence is fulfilled. He has expressed interest in running for president in 2018. The suspension of the sentence Wednesday suggested a willingness of the Kremlin to accept the trade-off in greater legitimacy for the political system here in exchange for tolerating Mr. Navalnys often stinging criticism of Mr. Putin, reports The New York Times. Reuters notes that if he had been jailed today, street protests could have exploded once again and it would have invited more international attention and criticism of the rule of law and democracy in Russia. The Christian Science Monitors Russia correspondent, Fred Weir, reported in July that when asked Do you think that the trial of Alexei Navalny is the result of his political activities and his opposition views? nearly 60 percent of Russian respondents answered “yes,” while just under 20 percent said “no.” Increasing numbers of people insist that they have no faith in Russia’s courts , nor in the law enforcement bodies that choose which investigations to pursue and what evidence to admit, Mr. Weir wrote. They include US Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul , who issued a distinctly undiplomatic Tweet after hearing of the [July 18, 2013] verdict: “We are deeply disappointed in the conviction of @Navalny and the apparent political motivations in this trial.” Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev , who has repeatedly lambasted Mr.
Russia says ‘no reason to break into applause’ after Iran talks
View gallery Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov looks on at the start of two days of closed-door nuclear talks on October 15, 2013 at the United Nations offices in Geneva (AFP Photo/Fabrice Coffrini) Moscow (AFP) – Russia’s chief negotiator on Iranian issues warned Wednesday there was “no reason to break into applause” after the latest round of talks on Tehran’s disputed nuclear programme concluded in Geneva. The results are better than what we had (in the previous round) in Almaty, but this does not guarantee further progress. There is no reason to break into applause,” Russian news agencies quoted Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov as saying in the Swiss city. “Things could have worked out better.” Ryabkov said the distance between the positions taken by Iran and world powers on the issue “can be measured in kilometres, while the progress we are making can be measured in single steps”. He said the main outstanding difficulty concerned “the lack of a general understanding about sequencing — a reference to Iran’s insistence that Western states revoke their unilateral sanctions before the Islamic republic scales back its uranium enrichment drive. World powers insist that sanctions can be lifted only after Iran halts enrichment to high levels and opens unfettered access to its nuclear facilities. Ryabkov especially noted the low level of trust that remained between the two sides despite the heightened expectations going into the two-day meeting. The talks were difficult, sometimes intense, and sometimes unpredictable. One of the reasons is the extremely low level of mutual trust practically the absence of the required level of trust,” Ryabkov said. Politics & Government WASHINGTON (AP) Congress’ debt-and-spending breakthrough crystalized a political contradiction. Associated Press