As 2013 draws to a close, we invite our readers to take a look back at some of Russia’s top newsmakers through their comments on the year’s most newsworthy events. 

Gay rights and Russia’s anti-LGBT propaganda law

 

Vladimir Putin

“Berlusconi is denounced for living with women. If he were a homosexual, they wouldn’t say a word to him.”

Read the whole story

Vladimir Putin

Source: AFP / East News

Yelena Isinbaeva

“I am opposed to this controversy and against what is happening. If politicians or any other people who have no relationship to sports want to use us in this boycott, I'm against it."

Read the whole story

Yelena Isinbaeva

Source: ITAR-TASS

Security leaks and Greenpeace

 

Edward Snowden

“I ask for your assistance in requesting guarantees of safe passage from the relevant nations in securing my travel to Latin America, as well as requesting asylum in Russia until such time as these states accede to law and my legal travel is permitted.”

Read the whole story

Edward Snowden

Source: AP

Dmitry Medvedev

“Concerns about the environment cannot justify illegal acts, however high the motives of the people taking part in various actions.”

Read the whole story

Dmitry Medvedev

Source: Reuters

The arts

 

Gerard Depardieu

“At some point I felt a certain closeness to [Rasputin]. Both of my grandmothers were clairvoyants and hypnotists.”

Read the whole story

Gerard Depardieu

Source: RG

Ian Frazier

“It was hard to find a Gulag to visit. I did find one in the Sakha Republic, a little bit west from Oymyakon and it was the most terrible thing I’ve ever seen, but in the same time very fascinating because nothing changed, it was like frozen in time.”

Read the whole story

Ian Fraizier

Source: Press Photo

Politics at home and abroad

 

Sergey Lavrov

“The quiet and harmonious work of the UN as a major platform for dialogue is a long-term vaccination against the virus of anarchy in international relations.”

Read the whole story

Sergei Lavrov

Source: ITAR-TASS

Alexei Navalny

"I thank all for support and I will do all I can to justify your hopes. I am sure our party will be registered and win voters' support."

Read the whole story

Alexei Navalny

Source: ITAR-TASS

Mikhail Prokhorov

"Participation in the nationalist march is unacceptable! If you are considering whether to go there or not, don't go!"

Read the whole story

The billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov

Source: Vostock Photo

Barack Obama

“I have said consistently that, where the interests of the United States and Russia converge, we need to work together.”

Read the whole story

Obama

Source: AP

Women in the news

 

Lyudmila Putina

"Our marriage is over because we barely see each other."

Read the whole story

Putina

Source: Vostock Photo

Anna Netrebko

“I want to say to women who have autistic children, that they should not be afraid.”

Read the whole story

Anna Netrebko

Source: Legion Media

Semyon Varlamov

“What can I say? I believe many people just understand the whole situation. Thanks for your support.”

Read the whole story

Varlamov

Source: AP