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Russia accuses leading Arctic researchers of spying on China



Russian President Vladimir Putin gives a speech during the International Arctic Forum in St. Petersburg on April 9, 2019.

Investigators alleged that Valery Mitko, president of the Arctic Academy of Sciences in St. Petersburg, giving documents containing state secrets to Chinese intelligence in early 2018 at China Maritime University, China, where he was a visiting professor, his lawyer Ivan Pavlov told CNN.

According to Pavlov, the document in question is related to hydroacoustics, the study of sound in water that is commonly applied in underwater navigation, communication and monitoring of submarine activities, among others.

Mitko, 78, denies making a mistake. His lawyer stated that all information brought by scientists from Russia to China for his studies was openly available. The press service of the Federal Security Service did not respond to requests for comment.

Mitko was charged with treason and was put under house arrest in February this year, but details of the case only appear now, after Pavlov’s defense team, Komanda29, which specializes in state security and espionage cases, took it to attract public attention. .

Analysts at Russia-China relations believe that spying charges against an Arctic researcher could highlight growing competition between the two countries in the region. Moscow and Beijing have built strategic partnerships in the North Pole amid rising tensions with the West, but Russia has been cautious about military cooperation in the field, said Alexander Gabuev, Russia’s chairman of the Carnegie Moscow Center Asia-Pacific Program.

“China really shows that it has military ambitions by the way its intelligence sees these things,” Gabuev said. “Submarines operate in neutral waters and we might see a new frontline in developing China’s global navy. And submarines that can operate in the Arctic are part of that.”

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Some Russian academics have been accused or convicted of giving state secrets to foreign governments in recent years. In 2018, a Moscow court charged Viktor Kudryavtsev, an aerospace engineer, with treason for allegedly sharing a report containing information about Russian hypersonic weapons with a Belgian institution after a joint research program, the state-run agency TASS reported.

Kudryavtsev, who is in his late 70s, spent more than a year in a detention center but was transferred to house arrest due to poor health. His case is still under pre-trial investigation. Two other employees from the same institution where Kudryavtsev worked since his arrest were accused of treason, according to the state-owned news agency TASS.

Another space researcher, 79-year-old Vladimir Lapygin, was released from prison last week with initial parole, following the 2016 conviction for continuing technical details about the Russian spaceship to China, according to TASS.

All scientists have denied making mistakes, saying that the information they accused was not classified.

Pavlov, the lawyer, has suggested that the case is a paranoia product in Russian special services. Court statistics show that the total number of cases related to state security skyrocketed after the annexation of Crimea in 2014, which resulted in “militaristic sentiment” in law enforcement, he said.

According to data published by the Russian Supreme Court, from 2009 to 2013, a total of 25 people were found guilty of treason, and in 2014 alone there were 15 sentences. Between 2014 and 2019, 51 people were convicted of treason.

“There is a group of people who are at risk of having sensitive information or gathering such information, and first of all these are scientists but can also be journalists or civic activists,” the lawyer added. “[The special services] monitors that have international relations and foreign contacts, so the red light blinks a little once they go abroad … and the mentality of our agent says if a scientist goes abroad, he of course goes there to sell secrets. “

Since China declared itself a “country near the North Pole,” the country has significantly increased efforts to increase its presence there, often with Russian assistance and bypassing other coastal states allied with the US and NATO. Russia, on the other hand, has made priority of revamping its territory in the Arctic circle, which was largely abandoned after the collapse of the Soviet Union.
In March, President Vladimir Putin launched an ambitious Arctic 2035 plan with hopes of returning jobs to the region, by developing large energy projects that were heavily invested by China, and Russia wanted to export oil and gas when the North Sea Route became increasingly free. ice.

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Portuguese historical films will premiere on 29 December.



Portuguese historical films will premiere on 29 December.

Method Media Bermuda will present the documentary FABRIC: Portuguese History in Bermuda on Thursday, December 29 at the Underwater Research Institute of Bermuda.

A spokesperson said: “Method Media is proud to bring Bermuda Fabric: Portugal History to Bermuda for its 5th and 6th showing at the Bermuda Underwater Observatory. In November and December 2019, Cloth: A Portuguese Story in Bermuda had four sold-out screenings. Now that Bermuda has reopened after the pandemic, it’s time to bring the film back for at least two screenings.

“There are tickets For $ 20 – sessions at 15:30 and 18:00. Both screenings will be followed by a short Q&A session.

Director and producer Milton Raboso says, “FABRIC is a definitive account of the Portuguese community in Bermuda and its 151 years of history, but it also places Bermuda, Acors and Portugal in the world history and the events that have fueled those 151 years.

“It took more than 10 years to implement FABRIC. The film was supported by the Minister of Culture, the Government of the Azores and private donors.

Bermuda Media Method [MMB] Created in 2011 by producer Milton Raposo. MMB has created content for a wide range of clients: Bermuda’s new hospital renovation, reinsurance, travel campaigns, international sports and more. MMB pays special attention to artistic, cultural and historical content.

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Maestro de Braga is the first Portuguese in the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba.



Maestro de Braga is the first Portuguese in the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba.

Maestro Filipe Cunha, Artistic Director of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Braga, has been invited to conduct the Cuban National Symphony Orchestra, as announced today.

According to a statement sent by O MINHO, “he will be the first Portuguese conductor to conduct this orchestra in its entire history.”

In addition to this orchestra, the maestro will also work with the Lyceo Mozarteum de la Habana Symphony Orchestra.

The concerts will take place on 4 and 12 March 2023 at the National Theater of Cuba in Havana.

In the words of the maestro, quoted in the statement, “these will be very beautiful concerts with difficult but very complex pieces” and therefore he feels “very motivated”.

From the very beginning, Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 will be performed by an Italian pianist (Luigi Borzillo), whom the maestro wants to bring to Portugal later this year. In the same concert, Mendelshon’s First Symphony will be performed.

Then, at the second concert, in the company of the Mexican clarinetist Angel Zedillo, he will perform the Louis Sfora Concerto No. 2. In this concert, the maestro also conducts Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony.

“This is an international recognition of my work. An invitation that I accept with humility and great responsibility. I was surprised to learn that I would be the first Portuguese member of the Cuban National Symphony Orchestra. This is a very great honor,” the maestro said in a statement.

“I take with me the name of the city of Braga and Portugal with all the responsibility that goes with it, and I hope to do a good job there, leaving a good image and putting on great concerts. These will be very special concerts because, in addition to performing pieces that I love, especially Rachmaninov and Tchaikovsky, I will be directing two wonderful soloists who are also my friends. It will be very beautiful,” concludes Filipe Cunha.

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