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The Real Russia. Today. Meduza's long read about a man in St. Petersburg with autism, Russian pilots fight for their careers, 30 injured at a rap festival in Moscow

Источник: Meduza

Friday, May 3, 2019

This day in history: 54 years ago, on May 3, 1965, Mikhail Prokhorov was born in Moscow. Now a billionaire who owns the Brooklyn Nets, Prokhorov got 5.7 million votes in Russia's 2012 presidential race, finishing in third place. He was that election's token “liberal.”
  • The life of the autistic man at the center of the documentary film Anton's Right Here
  • How pilots whose licenses were cancelled by the Russian government are fighting to pursue their passion
  • 30 injured in clashes between police and concertgoers at Moscow rap festival
  • Nizhny Novgorod officials see no ill intent in Victory Day buttons with Soviet symbols and swastika
  • Long line for Russian passport applications forms in Donetsk on first day of expedited citizenship process

‘Anton was and Anton is’

Maria Gelman for Meduza

The documentary film “Anton's Right Here,” about a young man with autism, premiered in a special screening at the Venice International Film Festival in 2012. A year later, the motion picture’s director, Seance magazine editor-in-chief Lyubov Arkus, founded a center in St. Petersburg, also called “Anton's Right Here,” to provide assistance to people with autism. Arkus says she created the organization “because of Anton and for Anton.” In the four years she spent filming the movie, Arkus became very close to both Anton and his mother. To find out about Anton’s life today, Meduza special correspondent Sasha Sulim visited St. Petersburg and spent several days with him.

Read Meduza's special report: “The life of the autistic man at the center of the documentary film ‘Anton's Right Here’”

How Russian pilots have gotten by after mass license cancellations ✈️

Alexander Fayruzov / Shutterstock.com

In 2017, hundreds of Russian civilian pilots lost their licenses. That year, Russia’s Federal Air Transport Agency, better known as Rosaviatsiya, closed down the country’s private aviation schools and annulled their graduates’ certificates, leaving them unable to pursue employment in their field. Many of the pilots affected had spent months of their lives and millions of rubles to get their licenses. In 2018, the pilots challenged Rosaviatsiya’s decision in court, but they lost their case. Meduza spoke with pilots who found themselves grounded two years ago about how they get by now. Some found jobs as taxi drivers or construction workers, and others found a way to return to their chosen profession.

Read Meduza's report: Aviation is my life’: How pilots whose licenses were cancelled by the Russian government are fighting to pursue their passion

Violence at a hip hop festival in Moscow 🎤

Police have opened an investigation after clashes broke out between law enforcement officers and attendees of the Hip-Hop Mayday festival in Moscow, REN-TV reported. The festival took place on May 1 in the Russian capital’s Luzhniki stadium. Because entry to the event was free, the crowd attending was much larger than organizers anticipated. Eyewitnesses told the independent television channel Dozhd that Russian National Guard members began blocking parts of the path to the stage during the concert, and by the end of the event, they were using clubs and electric batons to move audience members away from barricades in the stadium.

Read Meduza's report: “30 injured in clashes between police and concertgoers at Moscow rap festival”

News briefs

  • 👮 After a local resident noticed a souvenir shop in Nizhny Novgorod selling buttons that appeared to feature a red star and the ribbon of St. George crushing a swastika, regional officials have stepped in. Read the story here.
  • 🛂 The first office in Ukraine’s breakaway Donetsk region to offer expedited Russian citizenship applications opened for business on May 3. RIA Novosti published photographs of a crowd lined up outside the building. Beginning on May 7, 32 more immigration offices offering Russian passport applications in the self-styled Donetsk People’s Republic will also begin accepting applicants. Read the story here.

Yours, Meduza