Russia gets most rights complaints
BRUSSELS Russia faced more complaints last year at the European Court of Human Rights than any other nation, according to figures released by the court.
Of the 8,396 complaints lodged at the court in Strasbourg, France, 972 were against Russia. Italy was second with 881, followed by France with 868, Poland with 691 and Turkey with 655.
The court was set up in 1959 to review complaints from citizens who feel national courts have failed to uphold their rights under the European Convention on Human Rights, signed by all 41 Council of Europe nations.
The court reported a 40 percent increase in the number of complaints brought before it last year. The court's president, Luzius Wildhaber, said the court was working flat out to cope with the increase in cases.
Many of the complaints are declared inadmissible and others are resolved with amicable settlements before the court's ruling. In 1999, it delivered 177 judgments. Of those, 120 found violations of the rights convention, including 44 against Italy, 18 against Turkey, 16 against France and 12 against Britain.
Company chief slain
NOVGOROD The director of a prominent metals company in northwest Russia has been murdered, police said.
Yevgeny Shulman, 44-year-old director of the Industry Alloy Company in Novgorod, was found dead in his office, said Yelena Annenkova, a spokeswoman for the Russian Interior Ministry.
She said police had opened an investigation into the killing and that it was too early to determine whether Shulman had been killed in a contract murder. She gave no further details.
The Industrial Alloy Company manufactures equipment for nuclear power, oil and gas plants. according to ITAR-TASS.
VLADIVOSTOK Police raided an apartment building in Vladivostok and seized four dynamite charges and a detonator, the Emergency Situations Ministry said.
The charges, each weighing 200 grams (7 ounces), and one detonator were found after police in the Far Eastern port city stepped up their vigilance fearing new terrorist acts by Chechen militants. Law enforcement agencies were placed on alert throughout Russia last week after reportedly receiving threats of Chechen terror attacks.
The Associated Press