Arts and Entertainment Ellie Goulding has refused to sing at the Sochi Winter Olympics due to Russia's anti-gay laws

The singer turned down a request to sing at the Sochi opening ceremony

Russian city backs fines for 'promoting gay life'

St Petersburg to impose £100 penalties for spreading 'homosexual propaganda'

Last Night's Viewing: Putin, Russia and the West, BBC2<br />Mad Dogs, Sky1

"I looked in his eyes and I was able to get a sense of his soul," said President Bush about Vladimir Putin, when he was ambushed at a summit press conference with a question about whether he trusted the Russian President. In the footage of the event, Putin looked genuinely gratified to have passed the test, but in Norma Percy's Putin, Russia and the West, the moment was offered less as evidence of Putin's bona fides than as an example of Bush's naivety. Colin Powell, not an obvious knee-jerk hawk, was a bit more wary. "I look in his eyes and I still see KGB," he remonstrated with the President afterwards. "There's a reason he speaks fluent German." The reason was that Putin had been a chief for the KGB in East Germany, not to mention head of the FSB, one of the agencies that replaced it. Percy's series is about the transformation of that career intelligence officer into the most powerful man in Russia.

Leading article: Mr Putin must face the new reality

Yesterday's announcement by the Russian Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin, that he will seek the presidency again will have surprised no one.

Vladimir Putin said today that the results of Russia's parliamentary elections reflected the people's will

Vladimir Putin rejects talks with opposition

Russia's prime minister Vladimir Putin has rejected the possibility of talks with opposition leaders who drew tens of thousands of people to protest rallies across the country.

An estimated 100,000 people joined the rally in Moscow to demand democratic reforms

Putin rules out election re-run

Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin has rejected demands from growing numbers of protesters for a re-run of the fraud-tainted parliamentary election.

Leading article: First shoots appear of a new democratic Russia

Twenty years ago this morning, Russians awoke not just to a new day, but to a new world – and so did everyone else. It had been only hours since Mikhail Gorbachev had announced in a momentous broadcast that he was resigning as President of the USSR, having failed to gain support for a new federal treaty.

An estimated 100,000 people joined the rally in Moscow to demand democratic reforms

Largest protest since collapse of Soviet Union rocks Russia

Russia's leadership was forced to defend its legitimacy yesterday after about 100,000 demonstrators rallied in central Moscow to demand democratic reform and fair elections in the largest wave of popular dissent since the fall of the Soviet Union.

Smaller turnout at second round of Moscow protests 

About 1,000 demonstrators demanding a rerun of parliamentary elections gathered in central Moscow today for a second weekend of protests against Russia's fraud-tainted vote, a comparatively small crowd that underlined the challenge to the opposition of keeping up public pressure on authorities.

Vladimir Putin defends election result

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said today that the results of Russia's parliamentary elections reflected the people's will, and that the opposition had alleged voting fraud purely to strengthen its position.

Putin is losing his grip on the televised media

No longer the same old story

Following protests and online activity, the Russian media are increasingly reporting the truth. By Jonathan Brown

Putin is losing his grip on the televised media

Why the Russian revolution is being televised at last

The mass protests over alleged vote-rigging may have signalled the end of propaganda as TV news

People shout during an authorized opposition protest in Moscow against the alleging mass fraud in the parliamentary polls

Russian mass protests over alleged election fraud

Tens of thousands of people took to the streets across Russia today to demand an end to Vladimir Putin's rule and a rerun of a parliamentary election in the biggest opposition protests since he rose to power more than a decade ago.

Police detain demonstrators during protests against alleged vote rigging in Russia's parliamentary elections in Moscow

Moscow police detain opposition leaders as election protests spread

The Kremlin yesterday struck back against rising popular discontent in the aftermath of parliamentary elections, arresting and jailing opposition leaders and sending thousands of flag-waving youths to disrupt attempts by disgruntled Muscovites to rally again.

Kremlin strikes back with jail time for protesters

Opposition to the Prime Minister in wake of his party's dismal showing in parliamentary polls surprises the government

Vote demos clash with Moscow police

Demonstrators trying to hold a second day of protests against vote fraud in Russia's parliamentary elections have clashed with police in Moscow.

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