Russia's Controversial Figurehead: From Prison To Moscow Mayor?

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Russia: Controversial figurehead - Putin critic and anti-corruption blogger Alexei Navalny hopes to become mayor of Moscow, but his chances of beating the incumbent, Sergey Sobyanin, are slim. "Change Russia, Start with Moscow" - that's the campaign slogan of the ambitious activist Alexei Navalny. For years, he has exposed corrupt Russian leaders on his internet blog, and he's become the face of the Russian opposition. But now the country's judicial system is pursuing him with all its force. In June, he was sentenced to five years in prison for embezzlement. In a surprise move, he was released in time for the forthcoming election. There is already speculation in Moscow that Navalny is a "Kremlin project," an undercover agent of Putin who is actually working to bring down the opposition. Italy: European closing times - For a long time in Italy, the piazza was considered an extension of the living room. But nightlife on these public squares is now threatened with extinction. In southern Europe, much of life takes place outdoors, especially in the summer. But in Rome and Milan the party atmosphere is now so out of hand that residents are up in arms. Citing European law, they have already won a strategic victory in Milan. A new regulation bans shopkeepers from selling take-away food and drink after midnight. The clash of cultures on the piazzas has begun. Series "Europe on the Edge" - Scandinavia: Trouble in Paradise - Lapland, a region as large as Denmark in the far north of Europe, is home to only a few thousand people. But ever since half the world set its sights on Sweden's reserves of iron ore, the face of the north has been changing. A British mining company wants to build a mine west of Jokkmokk and recklessly promised its investors it was on unpopulated land. That has infuriated indigenous people such as the Sami. They fear the destruction of their forests, clean drinking water and grazing grounds for their half-tame reindeer. But the mining company wouldn't be the first that got its way at the Sami's expense. Switzerland: Jobs for immigrants - In Germany, hiring immigrants to be health care assistants has been a topic of discussion for years. Switzerland is now doing so in earnest. After the success of a pilot project in the city of St. Gallen, the experiment is to be expanded to the entire canton starting in September. The aim of its proponents: to reduce the nursing shortage and combat high unemployment rates among immigrants. In practice, though, there is often a lack of communication with elderly patients. Nursing associations have criticized the project sharply, saying they fear the project will lead to a loss of quality and low wages.

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