The volume of investments in Russian railways will reach five billion dollars in 2002, first deputy railways minister Alexander Misharin said in Tokyo during the presentation of the Transsiberian mainline. He pointed out that since the middle of 1980s the Transsiberian mainline has entered a difficult period but beginning in 1996 the situation began cardinally changing, mainly due to the tangible growth of investments which made it possible to modernise the technical base of the mainline. According to Misharin, in 2000 40,000 containers were transported along the Transsiberian mainline, and this year this figure will make up 50,000. President of the association of Transsiberian operators of Japan Nagasawa, who made a speech during the presentation ceremony, stressed that the Transsiberian mainline is the shortest transport route which connects Japan with Russia and Europe, which is highly economical and strategically important as an alternative to marine transport arteries.
More than 3,500 people were detained during unprecedented mass protests that swept across all of Russia in support of Alexey Navalny on January 23