The Real Russia. Today. London says ‘Alexander Petrov’ and ‘Ruslan Boshirov’ tried to kill Sergey Skripal, Russia braces for tougher U.S. sanctions, and a feminist faces felony hate speech charges

“Today marks the most significant moment so far in what has been one of the most complex and intensive investigations we have undertaken in Counter Terrorism policing; the charging of two suspects — both Russian nationals [aliases: Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov] — in relation to the attack on Sergey and Yulia Skripal. I would like to thank the Crown Prosecution Service for their independent assessment of the evidence in this case.” Read the whole statement by Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, national lead for Counter Terrorism Policing, in relation to the Salisbury and Amesbury Investigation.

Crew members probably didn’t sabotage the International Space Station

The hole drilled into the Russian module on the International Space Station was made and plugged (unsuccessfully) before it was ever launched into orbit, three sources in Russia’s rocket and space industry told the news agency RIA Novosti. A commission assembled by the rocket and space corporation Energia, which developed and built the “Soyuz” module, has reportedly determined that the plating was damaged before the equipment was sent to the International Space Station. Sources say the panel was plugged with a special glue that unexpectedly didn’t hold.

Russian journalists dig up information about the secret agents who allegedly carried out the Salisbury nerve-agent attack

On September 5, British counter-terrorism officials put names and faces to the two suspects they blame for carrying out the March 4 “Novichok” nerve agent attack in England against Sergey Skripal and his daughter. London says “Alexander Petrov” and “Ruslan Boshirov” are likely pseudonyms for military intelligence agents, but that hasn’t stopped the Russian news website Fontanka from digging up everything it could find about men with these names.

A Russian politician kills two people in a traffic collision and keeps his license, while a feminist faces felony charges for joking online about ‘asses and pussies’

Federal investigators in Omsk are pressing felony hate speech charges against a feminist activist over a dozen blog posts from 2013 to 2016. Lyubov Kalugina is accused of using Vkontakte to “incite hatred of men,” says the “Sova” human rights center. Officials first started building their case against her last year, following a complaint filed by an unnamed person living in Birobidzhan. Kalugina says she’s being tried for extremism “because of some jokes about asses, pussies, and intra-feminist debates.”

The Real Russia. Today. Pavel Kanygin on why Zakharchenko was assassinated, Russia says Navalny’s YouTube videos are U.S. election meddling, and a governor kills a bear

On August 31, a bomb ripped through a cafe in Donetsk, fatally wounding Alexander Zakharchenko, the separatist leader of the unrecognized Donetsk People’s Republic (DNR). Russian officials immediately blamed the assassination on the Ukrainian authorities. At Meduza’s request, Novaya Gazeta correspondent Pavel Kanygin — who’s reported extensively on the conflict in eastern Ukraine, including on the ground during the height of the armed conflict — explains who stood to profit most from killing Zakharchenko and what we should expect, now that he’s dead.

A Russian governor shot and killed a sleeping bear, but his administration says it was all by the book

On September 3, YouTube user Dmitry Larin shared a three-minute video showing Irkutsk Governor Sergey Levchenko killing a bear. Set in a snow-covered forest, the footage shows the governor on a hunting trip with several other men. He’s handed a loaded rifle and later fires multiple shots into a bear’s lair. The men then start shaking his hand, congratulating him. Before the video ends, a bear’s corpse is dragged out from its lair by a rope tied around its neck.