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Dec/29/2020 news: \\ political party law reformed: idea > individual; transparency; female % \\ Pashinyan responds to "not being enough pro-Russian" \\ who owns which business? \\ protests & snap elect. \\ burglary case & HHK MP \\ humanitarian aid for Artsakh \\ Vitalik flexes muscles \\ bills pass
Your 14-minute Tuesday report in 3589 words.
Pashinyan about pre-war negotiations and "avoiding" the war:
The idea that a flexible foreign policy could have avoided this war is being constantly circulated. Those [former officials] who believe in this thesis must answer at least one question: as a result of their "flexible" policy, why was it not possible to avoid the war of 2016, which was preceded by the unprecedented escalation of 2015 and 2014? The "flexible" policy adopted by Armenia for many years led to the introduction of Russian proposals in January 2016, which proposed the return of 7 territories (5 + 2) without any legal status for Nagorno-Karabakh. Why did Russia make such an offer? For one simple reason, as a result of Armenia's "flexible" policy, the Madrid process had come to a standstill because Artsakh could receive a Status outside Azerbaijan only with the consent of Azerbaijan. It was obvious to Russia and everyone else that Azerbaijan would not agree to this, so it was necessary to find ways to break the deadlock. And, by the way, if certain people claim that Armenia's foreign policy after 2018 was not sufficiently pro-Russian and this was the reason for the war, then why in the conditions of the "sufficiently pro-Russian" policy of 2016 were Russian proposals born and why did the April war take place? There was only one way to prevent this war: return the regions and forget about Artsakh's legal status. Now, after the war is over and we know the outcome, the number of supporters of [giveaway of 7 regions] is growing. What they forget is that if we gave away the lands to avoid the war, we would have the same situation in Syunik borders. They used to accuse us of "selling lands" [he means the contradictory statements like Nikol sold the lands, and why didn't Nikol sell the lands earlier to avoid the war]. The biggest failure by the supporters of the "flexible policies" is that they spent years trying to avoid a war instead of preparing for it. Our biggest failure is that we weren't able to recover enough embezzled public property in the past 2.5 years to help us better prepare for the war. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039231.html
businesses owned by opposition leaders
What are the known businesses owned by some of the famous people you might have seen in the public square lately?
20% share in Lorva Amrots Ltd which plans to operate two hydro-power plants on Dzoraget river. Manukyan purchased the shares in 2011 after being appointed by Serj as the head of the Public Council. In 2015-2016, he owned 30% shares in Vanavka Group. In 2015-2017 he had 30% shares in Jermakunq Group. These companies extracted and bottled water. At the time, the director of these companies was charged with illegal bottling and causing ֏55 million in damages to the state. The corruption case was sent to the IRS, which terminated the investigation after "not finding a crime". The companies export the products mostly to Russia.
Vanetsyan is a poor boy, according to the public declarations database. But if you have time, take a look at the investigative report I covered in Ap29/2020 news, according to which Vanetsyan's family allegedly used offshore firms and owns mining shares. More on that here. Here is a Hetq investigative report. Vanetsyan's father owns AV Group flower importing business. About a year ago, the police investigated several flower sellers near a stadium. An opposition outlet claimed that the sellers were "beaten and forced" to testify that Vanetsyan's father was running an underground business. This was never properly proven and the opposition's claim that Vanetsyan was about to be charged did not happen. The police confirmed that there was an investigation against several flower sellers. These flower sellers ended up hiring Vanetsyan's co-party-creator Arsen Babayan as a lawyer. Vanetsyan's father owns 50% shares of A B Export oil import company that began operating in 2017. It was a minor player that quit the market in 2019. Vanetsyan's father also owns 60% of A B Trans transportation company. In Nov/2019, CivilNet wrote about Arthur Vanetsyan's cousins' possible involvement with Zangezur Copper factory (massive business). The same offshore firm in Cyprus, which purchased Zangezur shares, was tied to Vanetsyan's cousins' another business in the same offshore. Vanetsyan's cousins also own a Switzerland-based Exoil wholesale cooking oil and shipping company. In 2019 it had a revenue of $148 million (11 billion Rubles). The cousins don't do this business in Armenia. Per 2019 registration, Arthur Vanetsyan himself owns one apartment, $10,000, and ֏1 million. Media reported in May/2020 that Vanetsyan's cousin purchased a ֏300 million mansion in Yerevan, which was donated to then-new political party "Hayreniq", co-founded by Arthur Vanetsyan and Arsen Babayan (the guy who is accused of helping HHK to fabricate documents in 2018 to hijack the Constitutional Court by appointing HHK MP Hrayr Tovmasyan as a judge). Arthur Vanetsyan's mother served as the chief of the personnel-management department in Serj and Pashinyan administrations, before quitting and working as Serj's aide. Vanetsyan's wife owns Villa Montessori preschool in Yerevan. She also runs the Young Education Center Ltd.
ARF Ishkhan Saghatelyan
Pashinyan appointed Saghatelyan as Gegharquniq governor for a brief period after the 2018 revolution, when Pashinyan created a unity-government, represented by all political parties. The honeymoon soon ended and each party went their way. Saghatelyan owns shares in i-mega Service Ltd. It's a tourism agency founded in 2006. It operates in Armenia, Artsakh, and Georgia. Saghatelyan founded Navasar company and serves as director. It's owned by his father. Saghatelyan family owns the Tsovasar hotel complex on Lake Sevan shores. It's 10,000 m2 (a hectare?). As of 2018, Saghatelyan declared ownership of 8 pieces of land, 2 apartments, ֏18.5 million, $45,000, and €15,000. Saghatelyan's father is the mayor of Gegharquniq's Geghamavan settlement. This municipality had recently sent a letter demanding Pashinyan's resignation. Saghatelyan used to be a shareholder of Shiman Ltd which is no longer active.
BHK leader Gagik "dodi gago" Tsarukyan
BUCKLE UP, KIDS! Overall, Tsarukyan runs 54 companies. Студент, комсомолец, спортсмен, u наконец, он просто красавиц. His business empire was covered in details here. Textile, gas stations, malls, Multi Group empire, Shangri-La Casino, Ararat Cognac & Wine Factory, BMW official office Euromotors (also Hyundai, Gazel, Niva), Multi Motors, Magas Invest, Multi Wellness, Olimpavan sports complex, Kotayk beer factory, TechnAlyumin door & window factory, Multi Rest House hotel chain, Paravon luxury restaurant, Onira Club, Zvartnot's airport's upper-level service company Avia Service, Farm Adama, Multi Pharm pharmacy, Multi Leon gas stations, Multi Solar solar panels. He owns shares in Frank Mueller Yerevan watch company, Fortsa, Multi Gold, Multi Diamond jewelry firms, several fish-breeding businesses. He also runs businesses in Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Czechia, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Latvia. Per official declaration, he owns $168 million, €29 million, ֏675 million, 14 pieces of land, 6 houses, 2 public buildings, 1 apartment.
Details for BHK MP Mikael Melkumyan and HHK Vahram Baghdasaryan in the link below.
The street demonstrations, organized by the former regime and its allies, continue. They demand Pashinyan's resignation and the appointment of their candidate Vazgen Manukyan as the Prime Minister for the duration of a year, after which they agree to hold new elections. ARF leader Artsvik Minasyan said they don't plan to discuss snap elections with Pashinyan. "Right now, our only demand is Pashinyan's resignation. We demand SIS to immediately hold every criminal accountable". The demonstrators gathered in front of the SIS building to present the demands. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039316.html
Pashinyan meets leaders of several opposition parties
felony case: ex-HHK MP charged with armed attack on ex-IRS official
In August of this year, Russia extradited a former HHK MP Alraghatsi Lyovik to Armenia. He was wanted for allegedly burglarizing and shooting at a senior IRS official a decade ago. At the time, his case was "frozen". It was relaunched in 2018. (magic wand) NSS says: suspect Lyovik, with the help of citizens AK and AN, organized an armed burglary against IRS Chief (?) Avetisyan in 2008. AK was in the United States. In 2004, he stole $150,000 from jewelry shops in Los Angeles. He got caught but managed to flee to Armenia. Once in Armenia, AK colluded with policeman AN to organize a similar criminal ring in Armenia. [MP] Lyovik personally knew AK, and learned about their burglaries. Since Lyovik had bad relations with the IRS chief (victim), he decided to punish the victim by urging AK to burglarize his house. Lyovik revealed the plot to his brother-in-law, who happened to be the victim's personal aide. The latter gave all the personal habits and details about the victim to the burglars. [read the article for the full story, or wait for a Hollywood movie in theaters near you] The burglars and organizers are charged with felonies. https://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/203835 , https://youtu.be/brdozVbwQ6A , https://factor.am/274836.html , https://armtimes.com/hy/article/183522 , https://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/203835 ,
Russian Orthodox chapel will be built
... in the Armenian settlement near Nakhijevan where Azerbaijan had earlier shut down a Russian helicopter, which killed and wounded Russian pilots. It'll be on a hill in Yeraskh. Construction starts on January 6th. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039259.html
Vitalik Balasanyan will return the lands, kicks junkies, and restrict Facebook
Artsakh President Arayik earlier announced that he will allow his opponents to take jobs in the new coalition government. Kocharyan-ally Vitali Balasanyan became the Security Council chief. Vitalik: we will return Hadrut and Askeran region with the help of Russian and Armenian military-political efforts. We are in a better situation now to solve territorial issues. We will soon create border guard forces. It will report to MoD, which will report to the Security Council (his office). Drugs have no place in Artsakh. Drug users must quit or leave Artsakh now. We need to return to traditional values of giving women as wives after asking if the man had served in the army. No public official will be allowed to use Facebook during work. More: https://youtu.be/DceHyi4AB5g https://www.panarmenian.net/arm/news/289056/
search operations are paused / the "welcome to Azerbaijan" sign
Azerbaijan received criticism for refusing to allow search teams to enter the Hadrut region yesterday. They also prevented UNESCO from checking the status of several Armenian cultural sights, after complaining that UNESCO was "biased" against Azerbaijan during the war. HR Ombudsman: Any untrue information can not be a reason to disrupt the humanitarian process [referring to unconfirmed rumors on social media that Armenians opened fire at Azeris in Hadrut. An unofficial Iranian social media channel claims 3 Azeris were killed but due to an internal fight.] The Human Rights Ombudsman also criticized the Azeri troops for installing a provocative "welcome to Azerbaijan" sign on part of a road that went under Azeri control near Syunik borders. The Ombudsman says it's meant to intimidate the locals. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039233.html , https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039237.html , https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039244.html , https://factor.am/325511.html
Context: BHK MP Naira Zohrabyan referred to the majority of Armenian voters as human trash *(or as she says: impure), and called for the establishment of forced re-education camps so people won't vote for a "wrong party" again. The ruling QP party launched a process to terminate her chairmanship in Parliamentary Human Rights Committee. Read yesterday's thread for more details.* QP MP Arthur: the law states that the Parliament can appoint and terminate the chairman. The termination of this seat does not require the same procedures as in the case of MPs and Judges. Armenian Constitution states that in Armenia, human beings are of the highest value, and inalienable human dignity is the inseparable basis of their rights and freedoms. MP Zohrabyan's public conduct is against it. // The law gives the second-largest political party the mandate to appoint the chairman of this particular Committee. BHK, being the second-largest party, said they wouldn't appoint a replacement if Zohrabyan is voted out. QP MP Arthur: per rules, if BHK refuses to appoint a new candidate, the largest (QP) party will receive the mandate. // Parliament voted 78-4 to terminate Zohrabyan's chairmanship. BHK and LHK did not vote. BHK MP Zohrabyan: this termination was a Constitutional crime. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039245.html , https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039264.html , https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039304.html , https://factor.am/325132.html
Parliament votes: registering parties becomes easier / ideology instead of person / financial transparency
The goal of this reform is to have political parties that are more about ideology and less about an individual. The reform will boost internal democracy within parties; it will expand the powers of the Party Assembly. Parties will be required to add more anonymous voting mechanisms. The law also requires more financial transparency. The required membership to register a party is lowered from 800 to 300. Some of the public funding given to political parties will depend on the % of female members in the administrative boards. Parliament voted 99-1 to approve it. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039270.html , https://youtu.be/bPuZViCCCxo
Parliament votes: monthly fees towards soldiers' recovery are raised
Most workers pay a monthly 1000 Dram towards the Soldiers' Fund, which takes care of wounded soldiers and families of those who died. The govt found it necessary to raise the fee to cover thousands of new recipients. Here are the new fees and salary brackets: ֏1,500 for < ֏100k/month ֏3,000 for < ֏200k ֏5,500 for < ֏500k ֏8,500 for < ֏1 million ֏15,000 for > ֏1 million Parliament voted 89-0 to approve it. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039296.html
Parliament votes: ban on public smoking is delayed until 2022
The govt had adopted a law to ban smoking in public cafes and the public display of cigarettes in grocery shops. The ruling party wanted to delay parts of the bill that were set to go into effect in January, citing possible financial issues for businesses caused by the pandemic. QP MP: the cigarette industry pays $383 million to state coffers. Healthcare Ministry: it will be a mistake if you delay this bill for the sake of $10 million in tax revenues. Parliament voted 86-0 to delay the anti-smoking bill until 2022. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039295.html
Parliament votes: no tax on goods donated to Armenia
QP MP: When you donate a charitable product to the Republic of Armenia, you are exempt from customs duties and other tax payments, except for one payment, which we are trying to exempt with this bill as well. // Parliament voted 80-0 to approve it. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039297.html
how is the Judicial Branch doing?
The Supreme Court protects or punishes judges. It also handles complaints. It's separate from the Constitutional Court. bad boys 19 complaints against judges were heard, 14 of which were petitioned by Justice Ministry and 4 by Judicial Ethics Board. 10 judges ended up receiving disciplinary penalties, 3 received a warning, 3 were reprimanded, 2 were terminated, 4 were cleared. the system is overloaded 61 judges are handling 6470 felony cases. 86 judges handle 175,940 civil cases. 24 judges handle 17,390 administrative cases. The number of Arbitration cases rose from 3100 to 9900. finances This year, Supremes appointed 20 new judges. Supreme's budget remained the same this year. They returned ֏607 million in savings back to state coffers. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039249.html , https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039284.html
anti-corruption: SIS busts an IRS agent
SIS says: IRS border inspector took a bribe from a citizen to help him avoid paying Millions of ֏ in import taxes by splitting a large load into smaller pieces, so each piece would fall below the taxable threshold. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039293.html
Police and Nature Ministry have set up additional checkpoints as part of measures against whitefish poaching in Sevan. 24/7 monitoring on all alleys leading to the lake. They will also travel across markets to catch contraband whitefish. Why? It's the egg-laying season. Fishing is banned for now. The legally-allowed fishing tools were temporarily removed from the lake. https://youtu.be/8ZyRGpEazMQ https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039339.html
...the rest should have access to other jobs. There is an opportunity now because many businesses operate remotely. Call Center workers don't have to visit an office. Businesses would rather pay less to hire a rural remote worker than more to hire someone in a Yerevan office. The High Tech Ministry has an ongoing program to teach IT to 5,000 citizens. We must help workers to expand their skillset. We're working on a program to allow a worker to quit the job, not worry about the food on the table, and have enough time for education and learning new skills. The villagers should ideally lease their smaller lands to large agricultural producers," said Economy Minister Qerobyan. Full interview: https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039319.html
State regulators bust another price-fixing ring: fruit mafia
Yesterday, the Economic Competition Committee busted the egg industry's alleged price-fixing and anti-competitive practices. Today they say a similar collision was observed in the orange, mandarin, kiwi, lemon industry. The companies Best Fruits, Art-Fruits, and Promout were slapped with a ֏39 million in penalties for colluding to raise the prices for the products that had an increased demand during the pandemic period. http://www.competition.am/.../resources/Vo370_17_12_2020.pdf https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039269.html
Lenovo slapped for "anti-competitive practice"
The Economic Competition Committee heard a petition filed by Oazis Computer company against Lenovo. The latter was issued a warning for anti-competitive behavior. Public Regulator: "Lenovo" company had the ability to influence the process of importing Lenovo computers to Armenia from non-EAEU trade bloc countries. "Lenovo" took steps to reduce the import of Lenovo computers from non-EAEU states, by discriminating against Oazis Computer importer. Lenovo is given a month to correct the issue and fix the requirement and standards related paperwork. (Facebook next?) https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039333.html
Artsakh will also increase childbirth benefits
First child: ֏300k instead of ֏100k Second child: ֏300k instead of ֏200k (or ֏500k if one parent is disabled) As for monthly child care subsidy payments, it goes from ֏15k to ֏27k until the child turns 2. https://factor.am/325487.html
700 Artsakh families continue to live in 40 settlements of Gegharquniq province. The All Armenia Fund (HimnaDram.org) has provided food and household items to 241 families ahead of New Year. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1039313.html
daily life in Syunik bordering villages Shurnukh and Vorotan
Free 30+ page travel guide about Budapest, Hungary and bits of Central Europe. Enjoy! Information correct as of summer 2020. If you find anything incorrect or would like to make requests, suggestions (or just want to say hi), please do that here! You should also drop by in /budapest to see past questions and to get advice from multiple people. I would also greatly appreciate your post-trip feedbacks about whether my recommendations worked out for you or not! Restaurants, clubs can undergo radical changes and it's not always possible to keep track of every single one. The local charity I support is the Hungarian Food Bank Association. For every €1 donated they are able to save €30 worth of perishable food and have it reach underprivileged Hungarian families. If you find this guide useful, please consider donating to them! Some links use URL-shorteners, so I could track how many of you are using this guide. Nothing fishy waiting for you behind them. See my suggestions in the comments below about:
===CORONA RESTRICTIONS=== The situation is subject to change momentarily, this information is current as of September 2020. Eastern Europe as a whole has largely been spared from the worst of it, including Hungary, and the risk of transmission is low. Presently foreigners are banned from entry altogether. Exceptions are in place for people with ties to the country (family members, studies, work, those holding residence permits), and people transiting by car on designated highways. The situation will be revised monthly, with experts saying the second peak is expected for December-January. In the country, you need to wear a mask on public transport, inside shops, malls, cinemas, museums. You don't need to wear them inside restaurants, cafes, bars, but they must close by 23.00. Social distancing rules are in place, but largely ignored. ===END OF CORONA RESTRICTIONS=== Hungary has a continental climate with 4 seasons. Summer is the main season, a slightly less busy time to visit is April to mid-June and September to October, but the weather is less predictable. Those uncomfortable with 30+C (>85F) temperatures should visit around then as 35+C (>95F) is not uncommon in the summer. November through March has -5 to 10 (20-50F) and possibly gloomier weather – but fewer tourists. Currency: the Hungarian Forint (HUF, Ft). Fair exchange rates for Euros is around 330-335Fts, for US Dollars around 300. Only use currency exchanges where the buy/sell spread isn't greater than 5-6Fts for these two currencies! Citizens of 62 countries do not require a visa to enter the Schengen Area and can stay for maximum 90 days within a rolling 180-day window. See here if you don’t know what that entails. EU member countries that are not members of the Schengen Area are Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Ireland, Romania, and the United Kingdom, visits to these do not count toward your 90 days. Non-EU countries part of the Schengen Area are Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland, visits to these do count toward the cap. Because we both know you want to do your own research, use:
WeLoveBudapest, the definitive city magazine in English, from top lists to current events,
Offbeat Budapest, a new site with the author’s finger very much on the city’s pulse,
Spotted by Locals, for even more local insight. Their offline city guide is worth $3.99.
TripAdvisor, a small number of reviews might be bought, but no other site competes with their sheer volume of input. Be skeptical of places with unbalanced (90+% 5-star) reviews, the remaining ones should be accurate.
See the city in 4K, or with Rick Steves. However nothing beats having a physical guidebook in your hand! Lonely Planet has the best and most recent issue. Read up on the concept of coconut and peach cultures, as sometimes the reserved and distant behaviour of locals can be misinterpreted by ‘peach’ visitors as rudeness – nope! This is a comprehensive itinerary, but leaves out the best museum of the city: the House of Terror, a solemn museum of the Nazi and Soviet occupation and crackdowns (get the audio guide or be prepared to peruse dozens of pamphlets). There's an attendance limit, so you might need to wait up to 30-45 minutes to get in when it's the busiest. When you are around Deák Ferenc tér, drop by in the Tourinform office (Sütő utca 2., the small street near the church) to stock up on free maps, printed guides of the city. WeLoveBudapest prints a comprehensive and free one every year around June. I suggest 4 full days to discover Budapest, or 3 faster paced ones. Make it 5-7 if you'd like to make a few daytrips (Szentendre - open-air ethnographic museum, cobblestoned, quaint center, Esztergom - Central Europe's largest cathedral and religious center, Visegrád - medieval castle, Eger - medieval castle and wine region). Most of Hungary’s highlights can be visited in 2 weeks. For more details on countryside and international trips, see my comment below. Meal times and habits are typical to central Europe: breakfast is usually done at home, not much of a culture of eating out in the morning. But a large number of new wave breakfast places have popped up in the past years, which offer ample opportunities for visitors, normally from 8am. Lunch is at midday, after 1pm most places are going to be fairly empty and many will stop serving lunch after 2pm. The standard time for dinner is 7pm, bookings for later than 8pm are unusual. Lots of restaurant kitchens close at 10pm (with the restaurant following suit 30-60 minutes later), finding a meal after that hour is challenging for anything other than street food. Baths Gellért is the most aesthetic, Széchenyi the largest and most popular among foreigners (Sparty can get crazy with lots of drinking, puking and sex going on in the pools, but it is wildly overpriced and 100% aimed at visitors). Rudas is a Turkish hamam with swimwear optional, single-gender weekdays (women-only on Tuesdays, coed and swimwear-mandatory on the weekend). Lukács is plain and personally I’m not a fan of it – tourists only visit it because it’s included free with the Budapest Card. For more details on the baths, see this. For off the beaten path sights, ride the D11 or D12 public boat lines for a cheap alternative to paid cruises (travelcards only valid on weekdays, otherwise 700Ft), check out the Pinball Museum, Hospital in the Rock or check out this section for a lot more off the beaten path ideas. Shopping Hungary has the world’s highest effective VAT (=sales tax) at 27%. Non-EU/EEA tourists are eligible for VAT refund on their qualifying purchases if they complete the paperwork (min. €175 value per transaction, passport+reclaim form stamped by customs official). The most popular and best accessible mall of the city is WestEnd on Nyugati tér. Arena Plaza is larger by floor area and carries a couple brands that can’t be found elsewhere, but is less centrally located (10min walk from Keleti train station). Don’t expect to find bargains on clothing or electronics, prices are similar to Western Europe and over North American or Asian ones. For more information on shopping and VAT refund, see here. Paprika Market is a decent souvenir shop in the sea of overpriced, terrible quality crap on Váci utca. Magma Gallery for contemporary and affordable jewelry, ceramics and home decor items by local designers is just one street over on Petőfi Sándor utca. Check out the antique bookstores alongside Múzeum körút between Astoria and Kálvin tér, some have Socialist-era posters available for sale from 30€ and up, that could be a unique gift/home decor to take home. Ecseri road flea market for more antiques, go early on Saturdays. Hungarian cuisine is hearty and filling, with a heavy use of meats. Must-try foods are:
Hortobágy crêpes: Hungary's more sophisticated answer to enchiladas, these savory crepes filled with either stew or minced meat covered in creamy paprika sauce make excellent starters or even entrée.
pörkölt/paprikás: a thick stew without or with sour cream mixed in and what the rest of the world incorrectly believes goulash is – my favorite is catfish with curd cheese&dill noodles, though beef, chicken and the inferior pork are more commonplace
roast sausage and blood sausage (hurka-kolbász): the breakfast of champions! Ideally eaten at an authentic butchershop like Pinczi or Balla with a side of pickled veggies, mustard (or horseradish) white bread and cold beer at 8am on a Saturday.
everyone’s favorite street food, lángos: Hungarians only eat it with salt, garlic, sour cream and/or cheese, the Frankensteinian concoctions with sausage or kebab toppings are 100% aimed at tourists
Somló trifle: a scrumptious walnut sponge dessert with chocolate sauce and whipped cream
Chimney cake: a sweet, spiral pull-apart bread baked over charcoal, rolled in the topping of your choosing (typically nuts, cinnamon, vanilla sugar, cocoa, coconut flakes)
For authentic recipes, recommendations for recipe blogs or cookbooks, tips for cooking traditional Hungarian meals, see here For edible souvenirs to bring home with you:
Pick winter salami: only choose the original, typically ~6000/kg, comes in sizes of 380, 800 and 1250g and in trays (100 and 250g). The brand has a deli & store (working with regular prices) on Kossuth tér, next to the Parliament, open from 7am on weekdays for breakfast and lunch.
Tokaji dessert wine: aszú being the premium product with the at least 4 puttony varieties suggesting quality, but they make regular whites as well, so check the label. Should cost at least 3-4000 per bottle. Suggested wineries: Disznókő, Oremus, Dereszla. Avoid: Royal Tokaji
Premium pralines in lovely, traditional packaging from Stühmer.
Grocery stores include Spar, Tesco, Aldi and Lidl. Avoid CBA and Coop, low quality for high prices. Small convenience stores, many 24/7, also dot the city at higher prices. The most popular and best accessible mall of the city is WestEnd on Nyugati tér. Alcohol is sold at every one, but some (mostly residential) districts enact a ban on the sale between 22.00-06.00. The central Pest districts don’t have such limitations in place. Tobacco is sold at tobacconists (‘nemzeti dohánybolt’ ). These shops are also exempt from the evening alcohol sale ban if you find yourself in such a district. Flavored cigarettes are banned in Hungary, so no Black Devils or Sobranies. Budgets (per person) For reasonable comforts, I would suggest aiming for at least €50 per day excluding accommodation. Hotel prices significantly vary in and outside high season.
Shoestring: <€50 (hostel dorm €10, attractions €5+, meals and entertainment €10+)
Mid-range: €75-150 (1/2 of hotel room or great Airbnb €30+, attractions €20+, meals and entertainment €25+)
In comfort: €150+ (1/2 of comfy hotel €75+, attractions €30+, meals and entertainment €50+)
Getting around Do not buy the Budapest Card, it is not a bargain, even if every travel blogger seems to think otherwise! You would need to visit at least 3-4 museums a day to break even and the free visit to the pretty plain Lukács Baths could mean you’d deny yourself going to the much more interesting mainstream alternatives, such as Gellért or Széchenyi. The discounted museums are second-rate and typically not what most visitors choose to hit up on their own. Do buy a public transport travelcard, the 1, 3 or 5-day unlimited options require no validation or ID (common reasons for fines). For week-long stays, the 7-day travelcard needs an ID number and that you have the document on you at all times. Please do not try to get around by using single tickets! The travelcards are economical (from €5/24h to €15/week) and easy to use: no validation, you just show it to the controllers. Validity starts immediately by default, or you can select a later starting date (always from midnight). 7-day and monthly passes require an ID/passport number, and you must have the ID on you whenever you travel, otherwise you risk getting fined! Groups of 4 or more can also buy the even more economical '24h group travelcard', but all persons must travel together using that. Common reasons for fines
Forgetting to validate single or transfer tickets
Entering the subway station without a valid ticket
Not having the ID on you for the 7-day travelcard or monthly passes (if you are fined for this, you have 2 business days to present it to the central BKK office for a reduced fine)
Ticket inspectors (must have an anonymized badge and armband) are notoriously brash, speak subpar English. Paying on the spot lets them give you a discounted fine of 8000 instead of the regular 16000 through postal order or wire transfer, they aren't looking to scam you if they offer you that. Fines are pursued internationally through collection agencies, multiplying the original amount once their fees are added. Cheapest way to get to the city from the airport is by public transport. I suggest paying the 900Ft supplementary ticket for the 100E bus. The southern portion of the M3 subway is under reconstruction, during that period the 200E buses go beyond their usual terminus, Kőbánya-Kispest and take you to Nagyvárad tér station, where the subway runs from. The purple ticket machines at the airport and all over the city take chipped cards. Shuttle bus is a good compromise between price and comfort and depart when full or close to. Ignore touts walking up to you offering cabs in the arrival hall, use the official Főtaxi booth immediately outside the building. Rates are centralized: flagfall 700Ft, 300Ft/km, 75Ft/min waiting. The fair price to the centre is around 7-9.000Fts. Rides inside the centre are typically under 3.000. All taxi companies have passable reputations with a few horror stories about each, Főtaxi (+36-1-222-2222), 6x6 Taxi (+36-1-666-6666), City Taxi (+36-1-211-1111) are a few. There are some stories of even company cab drivers trying to rip off naive-looking tourists, especially around train and bus stations, so consider legal Uber-alternative Taxify/Bolt (Android, iOS). Uber is banned. Most companies have apps, but they have terrible design and might set an unchangeable pick up location 5-10 minutes away from you. It’s much better to order by phone, they have English-speaking operators. If you must use an app, choose Taxify. Scams Cabbies are the only ones eclipsing the ticket inspectors in notoriety. I cannot emphasize enough: DO NOT USE THE ONES WITH ‘FREELANCER’ ON THE FRONT DOORS!!! These drivers are nicknamed 'hyenas', work independently, they always have rigged meters and are known to sometimes assault customers who don’t comply with their ridiculous demands. If you hail on the street, be absolutely certain you’re getting into a company cab (logo on the front doors). A known scam by the hyenas, fraudsters and illegal street exchangers is giving you worthless currencies with similarly high denominations as the Forint – namely the Indonesian Rupiah or the old Belarusian Ruble. Bag handlers at the airport steal from unsecured luggage. Never put any valuables in your checked luggage! Overly friendly, attractive women approaching you in broad daylight 'to practice their English' and taking you to scammy cafés where you'll be charged €300 for a bottle of bottom-shelf champagne are also to be avoided. Recently a Redditor reported the same happening to him through Tinder, so be very suspicious of anyone insistent on going to a particular establishment. The scam café was Hajós Café on Hajós utca. Another known scam location is Café Fidelité on Révay utca. Otherwise general safety cautions should be exercised: watch your valuables in crowded spaces for pickpockets, be wary of overly friendly strangers approaching you and introducing the idea of going to a club or bar by their 5th sentence or of people pretending to be authority. Policemen typically wear dark blue uniforms and white shirts , sometimes with a visibility vest and can be identified by the numbered metal badges on their chest and their separate police ID card which you can ask to inspect before complying with their orders. Scammers use fake police IDs to part you with your cash under the guise of inspecting the notes for counterfeits. Always ask to see it first: this is real, this is fake – notice where the real one has a serial number, the fake says POLICE. If the issue is anything halfway serious, ask to be escorted to the nearest police station – it will scare away scammers playing dress up. The emergency number is 112 for police, ambulance or firefighters, there are English-speaking operators (works throughout the EU). If you get pickpocketed, notify both the police and in case of losing your travel documents, your embassy. Thieves are usually courteous enough to leave papers near trash bins, so walk around in the neighbourhood to see if you can recover them. If you find someone else’s, hand in to the nearest police station. Getting around the city is easy, Budapest has one of the best public transport systems of the continent. Use Google Maps for orientation and getting around! Tickets and passes with rates are listed here. All EU/EEA citizens aged 65+ travel for free on all Hungarian public transport, including trains, distance buses. Picture ID and administrative 0 Ft ticket required. Age 65 is not included. Student discounts are available to full-time students in EU/EEA countries with a valid student ID. If it doesn’t have it, also carry a picture ID. EU citizenship not required, you only need to study there full-time (not applicable for exchange students unless they get ID issued). The monthly student pass (3450) is cheaper than the 72h travel card (4150) for identical benefits. The 4 subway lines are coded by numbers and, unofficially, colour (1-yellow, 2-red, 3-blue, 4-green). The busiest, M3, is under renovation until 2021, but remains in partial operation, see details here. The entire line shuts down after 8pm and all day on weekends (replacement buses operate), and one section of the line is always out of service. For 2019 it’s the southern segment, between Kőbánya-Kispest and Nagyvárad tér. During this time the 200E airport bus will take you to the more central Nagyvárad tér stop (from where the subway runs) instead of its regular terminus of Kőbánya. In Budapest driving is not recommended for the perpetual lack of parking spaces, congestion and because there's really no need to. If you must arrive by car, pick a hotel with parking, use the free parking lot at Kelenföld subway station, street-parking by StarPark at Podmaniczky utca at ~€8/24h, or opt for a more central location (such as one of CarE Park’s garages ) at ~20€/24h, €100/week and do not use it for getting around in the city. Public areas are metered in the entire centre, typically charging 1.5€/h with a cap of 3 hours on a ticket. The Bubi city bike system is available for anyone’s use. The rates are very favourable (500Ft for 1-day, 1000 for 3 for the pass), but a deposit of €80 will be docked when you register and might take a few weeks to release. First 30 minutes are free, after it's 500Ft/30min on top of the daily pass' price. Two e-car sharing systems compete in Budapest. I suggest using MOL Limo, as you can complete your licence verification remotely (do it before arrival, they might take a day or three if they are backlogged). Despite the name, the cars are tiny, automatic VW up!s, the majority electric and all automatic. Age limit 18, min. 1-year old national licence, foreign ones accepted, €20 registration fee and €0.25/min rate. Coverage includes basically every area of note to tourists in the centre, except the Castle and underground garages (as well as the airport). Expansion is planned for the future. You cannot park (leave the car) outside the coverage area, but you can drive through. Sightseeing The best rated tour bus company is Big Bus, Giraffe (aka. the red Hop On Hop Off ones) tends to get mixed-to-negative reviews. Segway tours also available. Free thematic walking tours of the city depart in front of the lion fountain on Vörösmarty tér daily. A tip of 2000-2500Ft/person suggested, but they're are chill about it, you can give less if you're on a budget. River cruises run during the day and the evening, including dinner (usually not great, save for one) or party in the latter case. The most popular is Legenda, partiers choose Boat Party. One standout cruise is Pannónia Gastro Boat that goes above and beyond the standard quality of service of other operations and often host guest chefs from innovative countryside restaurants. Public transport alternative is the D11 or D12 boat lines between Boráros tér going up to Népfürdő utca (or getting off at Jászai Mari tér or Margaret island 1 or 2 stops prior). Tram 2 between Jászai Mari tér and Boráros tér hugs the Danube on the Pest side and loops around the Parliament for a similarly nice experience. Seasonal operations, normally from March through October. Money The currency of Hungary is the Hungarian Forint (1EUR=330HUF, 1USD=300HUF in November 2019), but I’ve listed prices in Euros (€). Check for current rates here. Don't exchange Forints at home, bring USD/EUGBP in cash or a chipped card with you – the withdrawal fee is far smaller than what you’d lose by the atrocious rates available to you at home (exception: neighbouring countries). With cards, Visa, Mastercard are best, Maestro acceptable. Avoid Amex, Diners Club and other uncommon non-European issues. CAD/AUD/JPY/CNY will be exchanged at slightly worse rates, but still much better than if you’d exchange Forints at home. I don't recommend bringing currencies other than the ones I've mentioned and those from neighboring countries, but if you do, Tichi Change exchanges almost every valid currency in the world at as good of a rate as you could realistically hope for. When the ATM asks you if you want to be charged in your home currency, say no and opt for Forints or you'll lose up to 30% due to the poor conversion rate! Learn more about the rip-off of dynamic currency conversion here and steer clear of the ATMs operated by Euronet. Besides the dynamic currency conversion ripoff, they will also prompt you to withdraw ridiculously high amounts of money (equivalent of $500 or more) that you will not be able to spend in 3-4 days. Don't exchange any money with bright orange Interchange they use ripoff rates (>30% spread). They hava e monopoly at the airport and are also present throughout the city in premium locations, such as Váci utca. Street exchange is illegal and a good way to get scammed. Tons of fine currency exchanges around the city, the best USD and EUR rates are at Gold Change but use your eyes: the buy/sell spread shouldn’t be more than 1-3% apart for these, or 2.5-5% at banks. Exchange offices and banks do not take cards! You may only use them for ATM withdrawals. Phones Make sure to bring an unlocked phone, ideally a dual-SIM one. The 3 main carriers are Vodafone, Telekom (T-Mobile) and Telenor. The best prepaid package is Telekom's Domino Fix with the 1/3/30-day unlimited 4G add-on, costing 990+9900Fts (€32) for the 30-day option. SIM cards need to be activated after purchase, so buy them at brand stores where help is available instead of supermarkets or gas stations. Roaming fees within the EU have been abolished in 2017, you will be able to use your SIM in any EU member country, but not as if it would be local. I.e. a Vodafone Hungary-issued SIM will be roaming on Vodafone Austria’s network. Some 'reasonable' data caps remain in place, which are determined by the cost of your service. Outside the EU there are punitive data rates. I once managed to rack up a $90 bill for 5MB by accident. Sleep Rates are for high season (late April through September, Christmas, NYE), might be 50+% lower on other dates
For 0 hours (party hostels, from €10): Grandio, Retox, Carpe Noctem Vitae
On a budget (well-reviewed hostels, dorm, private rooms €10-35, apartments €40-60): Lavender Circus, Maverick City Lodge, Pal’s, The Groove, Loft, standard Airbnbs
In style (€150-250): Palazzo Zichy, Bródy Studios, Moments, Prestige, Corinthia, this palatial Airbnb
Lavishly (€250+): Aria, Ritz-Carlton, Four Seasons (the gold standard), Kempinski
Location: if you plan on sleeping, the party district (VII., inside the ring road) should be avoided, as well as VIII. outside of it and around Keleti train station for safety reasons/because you can get nicer digs elsewhere. An under the radar gem of an area is VII. between Múzeum körút and the ring road. Buda is nowhere as dead as tourists collectively imagine it to be (especially around Széll Kálmán tér), don’t shun it if you find someplace nice there. Eat at
Rosenstein (best traditional Hungarian restaurant in the country)
Két Szerecsen (cozy Hungarian)
Olimpia (casual fine dining)
Borkonyha (business casual fine dining, Michelin-star)
Stand25 (Bib Gourmand bistro - don't miss the goulash and the layered potatoes!)
Kispiac (modern Hungarian)
Vén Hajó (restaurant ship with amazing panorama and well-done Hungarian food - touristy, but still memorable!)
Petrus (French-Hungarian, Bib Gourmand)
Tüköry (traditional Hungarian on a budget)
Ruben (traditional Hungarian on a budget)
Bors (soups & sandwiches with a cult following)
Manu+ (authentic Neapolitan pizza).
For more detailed restaurant recommendations, see this comment. August visitors, check the restaurants' websites and Facebook to see if they aren't on holiday! The quality of service is a common source of complaints, don't take it too hard if it happens to you. Tip is 10% most of the time, unless you’re really dissatisfied or find yourself absolutely elated. Many top end restaurants add a ~12% service charge to the bill, tipping on top of that is not expected, though naturally it will be appreciated. Neither regular, nor ost fast food restaurants do refills. The only exceptions are all KFCs and a few Burger Kings. Smoking is banned at all restaurants, bars and basically every facility open to the public. Designated smoking areas can be found outside on the street. Try pálinka (~40% ABV fruit brandy), Unicum (herbal bitteaperitif, like Jäger), bikavér from Eger and Szekszárd (lit. ‘bull’s blood’, a full-bodied red), Tokaji aszú (similar to white Port, made of hand-picked berries with noble rot, named the "wine of kings, king of wines" from the 18th century) or fröccs (spritzer, white or red wine mixed with seltzer – a lifesaver in the summer)! More details in the shopping section. Or get really local and ask for ’fény’, carbonated vodka foam over raspberry syrup. You’ll see the fény (=light) at the end of the tunnel in no time! Eat a freshly fried lángos at market halls (acceptable toppings: sour cream, garlic, cheese, perhaps ham and cabbage - certainly none of that tourist stuff with nutella, Hungarian sausage or kebab...) and fried sausage from a butcher shop such as 1951 establishment Balla Hús in Városház utca or the more contemporary Belvárosi Disznótoros eatery. The gallery of the Hold utca market hall hosts quality street food vendors, Karaván food truck yard right next to Szimpla. Nightlife For more detailed recommendations, including strip clubs, casinos and more, see this comment. A casual evening
A38 (a converted Ukrainian barge – a unique experience)
Barba Negra Track
Get out See train schedules on Elvira, check for buses on menetrendek.hu (this site combines bus and train schedules, but has no English version, check for the orange or blue icon on the left side to see which is which). Daytrip options include
Szentendre: a bit different from its Scottish peer (lit. 'St. Andrews') quaint, cobblestoned artist town, chock full of galleries, art museums, restaurants – and tourists. The biggest attraction requires a short cab ride out of town, the open-air ethnography museum, Skanzen, with authentic recreations of functioning village clusters (open March through October). Best restaurant, oddly enough, cooks up a Caribbean fare at the hand of the Curaçaoan owner and his Hungarian wife: Mjam. Reachable by the H5 suburban railway from Batthyány tér (requires extension ticket for segment outside city limits - that's after Békásmegyer station, you need a 15km extension)
Eger: the location of a key Hungarian victory over invading Ottoman forces, this popular excursion destination is famous for its medieval castle, Baroque center, random museums (Beatles, firefighting and marzipan to name a few), its reputable wineries producing full-bodied, cabernet-like reds (bull’s blood, bikavér) and the limestone terraced natural spa of neighboring Egerszalók. Suggested wineries: St. Andrea, Tibor Gál, Demeter, Bolyki. Eat at Macok restaurant (by the castle entrance), they are excellent!
Etyek: the nearest wine region to Budapest, they focus on whites. Although not as spectacular as the previous examples, it's a worthwhile visit for wine aficionados in the summer and autumn. Typical varieties include Irsai Olivér, királyleányka and Muscat Lunel (sárgamuskotály).
For multi-day excursions, including to lake Balaton and detailed information on car rental, countryside and international tourism opportunities, click here
59 Trump connections to Russia, as detailed in "House of Trump, House of Putin"
IMPORTANT: You can and should buy Craig Unger's “House of Trump, House of Putin: The Untold Story of Donald Trump and the Russian Mafia” excellent book. This post is sourced from it. Trump has repeatedly said he has nothing to do with Russia. Here are fifty-nine Trump connections to Russia, as detailed by Craig Unger in “House of Trump, House of Putin: The Untold Story of Donald Trump and the Russian Mafia”. This list can be useful when people claim there is no connection between Trump and Russia. 1. Roman Abramovich Putin confidant/billionaire who, along with fellow oligarch Lev Leviev, created the Putin-approved Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia under the leadership of Chabad rabbi Berel Lazar, aka “Putin’s rabbi.” Ivanka Trump is close to Abramovich’s ex-wife, Dasha Zhukova, and has taken several trips with the Abramoviches, including a trip to Russia in 2014 as their guest. 2. Aras Agalarov A billionaire Russian real estate developer who is close to Putin, Agalarov partnered with Trump in bringing the Miss Universe pageant to Moscow and was a serious potential partner behind the never-built Trump Tower Moscow. Agalarov remained in contact with Trump after Miss Universe and during the 2016 presidential campaign. 3. Emin Agalarov Son of Aras Agalarov, pop singer Emin performed at the 2013 Miss Universe pageant, got Donald Trump to appear in one of his music videos, and was a key figure in arranging the infamous June 2016 meetings in Trump Tower between Russian operatives and top Trump associates. 4. Evsei Agron The first alleged boss of the Russian Mafia in Brighton Beach, Agron came to New York in 1975 and ran his crime gang out of Brooklyn’s El Caribe Country Club, which was owned by Dr. Morton Levine and his family, including nephew Michael Cohen, Trump’s lawyer. 5. Rinat Akhmetshin Former Soviet counterintelligence officer who became a K Street lobbyist working to end sanctions. Akhmetshin attended the Trump Tower meeting with Donald Trump Jr., Paul Manafort, and others in June 2016 at which a Russian lawyer promised to provide opposition research on Hillary Clinton. According to the New York Times, Akhmetshin had also worked in Kiev with Konstantin Kilimnik, an aide to Paul Manafort who had a background in Russian intelligence. 6. Tevfik Arif One of the billionaire oligarchs behind the Bayrock Group, the real estate development company, whose offices were in Trump Tower. Prior to the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Arif worked for the KGB-linked Ministry of Commerce and Trade. 7. Marat Balagula Evsei Agron’s alleged successor as head of the Brighton Beach Mafia, Balagula was suspected of having ordered the hit on Agron, but was never charged and moved into Agron’s former office in the El Caribe Country Club, which was still owned by Michael Cohen and his uncle. Balagula partnered with David Bogatin, who had previously purchased five apartments in Trump Tower. 8. Boris Birshtein Russian-Canadian who founded Seabeco SA with KGB operatives and under KGB guidelines to set up corporations abroad. Worked with son-in-law Alex Shnaider (who later built Trump Tower in Toronto) and two-thirds of the Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation’s Trio (Patokh Chodiev and Alexander Mashkevich). Birshtein hosted the famous 1995 summit meeting in Tel Aviv, at which Semion Mogilevich was allotted an enormous share of the Ukraine energy trade. 9. David Bogatin One of the pioneers behind the Red Daisy gas tax scam, Bogatin bought five apartments in Trump Tower for $6 million in 1984, in the process becoming the first alleged Russian mobster to launder money through Trump Tower. Donald Trump personally sold the apartments to Bogatin. 10. Jacob Bogatin Key member of the Mogilevich Russian organized crime family who was indicted for his involvement in Mogilevich’s YBM Magnex stock scam. Brother of David Bogatin. 11. Oleg Boyko Russian oligarch who was close to Boris Yeltsin and who purchased a Trump Tower apartment in 1994, which he later sold to Vadim Trincher. 12. Mikhail Chernoy Billionaire oligarch who ran Trans-World Group with his brother, Lev; gained control of Russia’s aluminum industry; and acquired a huge stake in processing and distributing other metals and petroleum products. Chernoy allegedly defrauded the Russian central bank of more than $100 million, and is believed by the FBI to be a major Russian crime figure. In the nineties, Chernoy worked with the Chodiev Group. Chernoy also worked with Semyon Kislin, who had a long relationship with Trump and who partnered with Tamir Sapir, a financier of Trump SoHo. 13. Vitaly Churkin Russian ambassador to the UN. Churkin met Trump in 1986 and along with Yuri Dubinin set up the trip Trump took to Moscow in 1987. Churkin died in 2017 in New York. 14. Michael Cohen Donald Trump’s personal lawyer. Cohen and his extended family, through his uncle, owned El Caribe Country Club in Brooklyn, which provided an alleged base of operations for the Russian Mafia in Brooklyn. In 1999, Cohen received a mysterious check for $350,000 that reportedly was intended for one of the leaders of the Izmaylovskaya Organized Crime Group. Both Cohen and his brother Bryan married Ukrainian women, and Bryan’s father-in-law, Alex Oronov, partnered with Viktor Topolov, an oligarch who employed three executives who were allegedly part of the Russian Mafia, including one enforcer who was tied to Mogilevich and admitted to taking part in at least twenty murders. 15. Oleg Deripaska Russian oligarch and founder and owner of Basic Element, a huge diversified industrial group. Close to Putin. Paid Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort $10 million per year to advance Putin’s global agenda. Manafort owed Deripaska nearly $19 million after a failed business deal, but that debt was said to have been forgiven after Manafort offered Deripaska secret briefings on the Trump campaign. Has admitted that, at times, he has had to collaborate with suspected mobsters because he had no choice but to work with such people. Also employed David Geovanis, who in 1996 helped arrange meetings for Trump in Moscow with key Russian figures regarding a potential Trump Tower there. 16. Natalia Dubinina Daughter of Yuri Dubinin who was already living in New York as part of the Soviet delegation to the UN when her father became Soviet ambassador to the UN in March 1986. Stated that there was a determined effort by the Soviet government to seek out Trump. At a time when KGB chief Vladimir Kryuchkov had been complaining about the failure to recruit enough American agents, Dubinina played a key role in setting up a meeting with Trump and encouraging him to come to Moscow. 17. Yuri Dubinin As Soviet ambassador to the UN, Dubinin met Trump and invited him to Moscow in 1987. The trip was arranged by Intourist, which was essentially a branch of the KGB whose job was to spy on high-profile tourists. As a result, Trump’s entire visit, including his hotel stay, would have been subject to surveillance by the KGB.6 Dubinin later became Soviet ambassador to the US. 18. Dmitry Firtash Ukrainian oligarch who is alleged to have partnered with and is considered a front man for Semion Mogilevich in “opaque intermediary companies” that siphoned off billions of dollars from the Ukraine energy trade. Supporter of the pro-Putin Party of Regions, which backs such policies. Also partnered with Paul Manafort on an abortive deal involving New York’s Drake Hotel. 19. Michael “MISHA” Flynn Foreign policy adviser to Trump during the campaign who later became Trump’s short-lived national security adviser. Met with GRU chief Igor Sergun in Moscow in 20137 and gave a speech to new hires at GRU headquarters. Was paid $45,000 by RT for a speech in late 2015, and was seated near Putin at an RT dinner. 20.Rick Gates When Paul Manafort became Trump’s campaign manager, Gates, as Manafort’s partner, became the campaign’s number two, after having worked closely with Manafort for pro-Putin forces in Ukraine. In 2017, Gates was charged with conspiracy against the United States, making false statements, money laundering, and failing to register as a foreign agent as required by the Foreign Agents Registration Act. In 2018, Gates pleaded guilty to one count of making false statements and one count of conspiracy against the United States. 21. David Geovanis As head of real estate for a subsidiary of the Brooke Group,* Geovanis arranged meetings for Trump during his 1996 Moscow trip to explore building Trump Tower Moscow. Later went to work for Oleg Deripaska’s Basic Element. 22. Rob Goldstone Music promoter who represents Emin Agalarov. Helped arrange the infamous Trump Tower meeting in June 2016 in which representatives of the Russian government offered the Trump campaign “dirt” on Hillary Clinton. Extended an invitation to Trump in the summer of 2015 to a party for Agalarov with the possibility of meeting Putin. Attended Trump’s 2013 Miss Universe pageant. 23. Anatoly Golubchik Sentenced to five years in prison in 2014 for his role in the $100 million gambling ring being run out of Trump Tower.8 Owned a condo in Trump International Beach Resort and appeared in the Panama Papers as part of a shell company that has the same corporate director as a company owned by Mogilevich and ex-wife, Galina Telesh. 24. Vyacheslav “Yaponchik” Ivankov One of the last of the old-time vory, Ivankov took over the Brighton Beach Mafia in 1992 and became one of the most powerful mobsters in the US. Connected to Putin through Leonid Usvyatsov, Putin’s judo coach who happened to be a mobster. Owned 25 percent stake in Mogilevich’s company Arbat. Mogilevich flew into New York on occasion to meet with Ivankov. FBI agents looked all over Brooklyn for Ivankov—only to find that he lived in Trump Tower. Ivankov also made frequent visits to Trump’s Taj Mahal casino in Atlantic City. 25. Irakly Kaveladze Longtime US-based associate of Aras Agalarov’s real estate firm, the Crocus Group, Kaveladze attended the June 2016 meeting in Trump Tower among Donald Trump Jr., Paul Manafort, Jared Kushner, and the Russians. At one point, he claimed he’d attended as a translator, but another translator was present. In truth, he was there as a representative of the Agalarovs. In the nineties Kaveladze’s company International Business Creations established more than two thousand Delaware-based shell companies and laundered more than $1.4 billion in cash. 26. Viktor Khrapunov A former Kazakh energy minister and ex-mayor of Almaty, the biggest city in Kazakhstan, Khrapunov was charged with conspiring to systematically steal billions of dollars of public assets and laundering the money through shell companies, including three corresponding to apartments in Trump SoHo. Khrapunov has denied the allegations. 27. Konstantin Kilimnik Started working for Paul Manafort in 2005 when Manafort was representing Ukrainian oligarch Rinat Akhmetov, a gig that morphed into a long-term contract with Viktor Yanukovych, the Kremlin-aligned hard-liner who became president of Ukraine. Studied at the First Department of the Moscow Military Red-Banner Institute of the Ministry of Defense of the USSR, which trained interpreters for the Russian military intelligence agency.10 Made two trips to meet with Manafort during the 2016 presidential election regarding the Trump campaign, and the possibility that Manafort would give briefings to Oleg Deripaska. Also opened a consulting firm in 2015 that had ties to Cambridge Analytica, the data firm that helped elect Trump. 28. Semyon “Sam” Kislin In the late seventies, Trump bought hundreds of television sets for the Commodore Hotel (now the Grand Hyatt) from Kislin, a Ukrainian immigrant who became a billionaire. Partnered with Tamir Sapir, whose Sapir Organization worked with Bayrock and financed Trump SoHo. As a commodities trader, Kislin was tied to Mikhail and Lev Chernoy and, according to the FBI, to Vyacheslav Ivankov’s gang in Brighton Beach. Kislin has denied having ties to the Russian mob. 29. Sergey Kislyak Russian ambassador to the US who had a number of secret meetings and communications with Trump campaign officials, including General Mike Flynn and Senator Jeff Sessions. During the Republican National Convention, Kislyak had two brief encounters with Trump foreign policy adviser J. D. Gordon, who was a key figure in rewriting—and weakening—the Ukraine plank in the Republican platform. 30. Simon Kukes Bought an apartment in Trump Parc in 2000 and contributed more than $280,000 to various Trump entities. Picked by Putin to head Yukos Oil, replacing Putin foe Mikhail Khodorkovsky. Shortly after the Trump Tower Russian meeting, Kukes started making major contributions to the Trump campaign as well as the Republican National Committee. 31. Bennett LeBow Founder and chairman of the Brooke Group. LeBow and Howard Lorber, president of the Brooke Group, accompanied Trump on his 1996 trip to Moscow. 32. Lev Leviev An Israeli billionaire close to Putin, Leviev made his fortune by cracking the world diamond monopoly of the De Beers cartel. Has several ties to Trump, among them a business relationship with Jared Kushner, who bought four floors of the old New York Times Building, on West Forty-Third Street, from Leviev for $295 million.13 In addition, Leviev was closely tied to the late Trump SoHo financier Tamir Sapir through Sapir’s son-in-law Rotem Rosen, who was the CEO of the American branch of Africa Israel, Leviev’s holding company, and who also became CEO of the Sapir Organization. One of Chabad’s biggest patrons worldwide, Leviev allied with Roman Abramovich to create the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia under the leadership of Chabad rabbi Berel Lazar, who would come to be known as “Putin’s rabbi.” 33. Howard Lorber President of the Brooke Group. Lorber and Brooke CEO Bennett LeBow accompanied Trump to Moscow in 1996. 34. Yuri Luzhkov As mayor of Moscow, Luzhkov was tied to Mogilevich and cultivated a reputation for corruption that was summed up by John Beyrle, then US ambassador to Russia, in a 2010 cable to Washington. “Corruption in Moscow remains pervasive with Mayor Luzhkov at the top of the pyramid,” Beyrle wrote. “Luzhkov oversees a system in which it appears that almost everyone at every level is involved in some form of corruption or criminal behavior.” Trump’s meetings in Moscow city hall to discuss major developments in Moscow took place under Luzhkov’s aegis. 35. Paul Manafort Before becoming Trump’s campaign manager, Paul Manafort had been hired by Ukraine’s pro-Putin Party of Regions to do an “extreme makeover” of Viktor Yanukovych that succeeded in making him president—only to see Yanukovych later exiled in disgrace. Manafort worked for oligarchs Oleg Deripaska and Rinat Akhmetov. As early as 2005, Manafort proposed to influence politics, business dealings, and news coverage inside the United States, Europe, and former Soviet republics to Putin’s benefit. He is alleged to have hidden $75 million in offshore accounts, at least one of which has ties to Mogilevich. 36. Alexander Mashkevich Kazakh billionaire who, with Patokh Chodiev and Alijan Ibragimov, is part of the Troika, or Trio, as they are known, major stockholders in the Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation, which controls chromium, alumina, and gas operations in Kazakhstan. Along with Chodiev, Mashkevich worked at Boris Birshtein’s KGB-linked Seabeco16 and was tied up with the Russian Mafia through their alliance with the Chernoys in the Aluminum Wars. He is listed in Bayrock’s promotional literature as a primary financial backer, but it is unclear if Mashkevich actually backed Bayrock projects. 37. Sergei Mikhailov Alleged to be the longtime head of Solntsevskaya Bratva, the biggest crime gang in Russia, and an associate of Semion Mogilevich, who is said to have laundered money for him starting in 1984. According to one denizen of the Russian underworld, Mikhailov is very much the boss and is more powerful that Mogilevich, who, as the brains of the operation, laundered vast amounts of money and came up with its most sophisticated financial scams, which is why Mikhailov has partnered in at least eight companies with Mogilevich. Mikhailov’s ties to Trump largely run through Mogilevich, but in 2013 Mikhailov was said to be interested in backing a Trump Tower development in Moscow and allegedly met with Trump representatives at the Ukraine hotel in Moscow. 38. Semion Mogilevich Ukrainian-born alleged “Brainy Don” of the Russian Mafia, with a multibillion-dollar organization allegedly involved in the sale of nuclear materials to terrorists, human trafficking and prostitution, drugs, and money laundering. In a 1995 Tel Aviv meeting, Mogilevich was awarded a controlling stake in RosUkrEnergo by fellow mobsters, thereby securing the franchise to siphon off untold riches from the Ukraine-Russia energy trade. Has close ties to Yuri Luzhkov, the former mayor of Moscow; Leonid Derkach, former head of the Security Service of Ukraine; and Vladimir Putin. In 1992, Mogilevich sent Vyacheslav Ivankov to New York to oversee expansion of the Mafia into the US. Trump partner Felix Sater was said to be Mogilevich’s shammes—i.e., his errand boy. 39. Hillel “Helly” Nahmad An art dealer who started buying apartments in Trump Tower in 1999, eventually taking over a full floor. Nahmad was a leader of the Nahmad-Trincher Organization, which operated “international sports books” that laundered more than $100 million out of the former Soviet Union, through shell companies in Cyprus, and into investments in the United States in an enterprise that was based in Trump Tower. The entire operation, prosecutors say, was protected by Alimzhan Tokhtakhounov. 40. Eduard Nektalov A diamond dealer from Uzbekistan, Nektalov, who bought a condo in Trump World Tower directly below Kellyanne Conway, came under investigation by the US Treasury Department for mob-connected money laundering. In 2004, after rumors circulated that Nektalov might cave in and cooperate with federal investigators, he was murdered on Sixth Avenue. 41. Alexandre Ventura Nogueira Primary broker of the Trump Ocean Club in Panama, Nogueira marketed the Trump-branded units to Russians, among others with criminal pasts. 42. Carter Page Foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign. Traveled to Moscow in July 2016 during the presidential election and met with senior Russian officials and influential oligarchs. Was approached in 2013 by Russian intelligence officials who were trying to recruit him. Page met with a Russian spy in 2013 and supplied research materials. 43. George Papadopoulos A foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign, Papadopoulos triggered the FBI investigation into Trump’s collusion with Russia when he told an Australian top diplomat that Russia had political dirt on Hillary Clinton. In March 2016, Papadopoulos met with Joseph Mifsud, a Maltese professor who had valuable contacts with the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in hopes of setting up a meeting between Trump and Putin. 44. Sergei Polonsky A flamboyant six-foot-four Russian real estate oligarch, Polonsky was convicted of fraud in 2017. While still associated with Donald Trump, Felix Sater served as an adviser to Polonsky in Mirax Group, which partnered with Sistema, a conglomerate tied to Mogilevich. Polonsky also partnered with Moscow mayor Yuri Luzhkov, a Mogilevich crony. 45. Vadim Rabinovich A pro-Russia Ukrainian oligarch and Mogilevich lieutenant who spent seven years in jail for embezzlement, Rabinovich attended the famous 1995 Russian Mafia summit in Tel Aviv at which Mogilevich was granted a generous share of the Ukraine energy trade. A year later, in 1996, Rabinovich hung around with his partners Howard Lorber and Bennett LeBow as they showed Trump around town. 46. Vladimir Rezin In 1996, Trump began negotiations with Rezin, the first deputy mayor of Moscow, to build a $300 million luxury residential complex. Like all of Trump’s proposed projects in Moscow, it never came to fruition. 47. Rotem Rosen Chief lieutenant of real estate magnate Lev “King of Diamonds” Leviev, Rosen married Zina Sapir, daughter of Tamir Sapir, who founded the Sapir Organization, which backed Trump SoHo. Attended Trump’s 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow in hopes of negotiating a Trump Tower Moscow. His son’s 2008 bris was touted by New York magazine as “the best bris invite ever.” Attendees included Donald Trump, daughter Ivanka, and her husband-to-be, Jared Kushner. 48. Dmitry Rybolovlev Russia’s “fertilizer king,” Rybolovlev owns a 3.3 percent stake in the Bank of Cyprus, alleged to be a haven for money laundering. In 2008, he purchased a mega-mansion from Trump in Palm Beach for $95 million, which Trump had purchased four years earlier for $40 million. 49. Tamir Sapir An impoverished immigrant turned billionaire, Sapir partnered with Semyon Kislin, who, according to the FBI, was a “member or associate” of Vyacheslav Ivankov’s mob in Brighton Beach. Like Kislin, Sapir likely made his money through ties to Uzbek oligarch Mikhail Chernoy. Lived in Trump Tower, and partnered with Bayrock and Trump on Trump SoHo. Sapir denied having any mob ties. Died in 2014. 50. Felix Sater Bayrock’s international man of mystery, Sater was born in the Soviet Union in 1966. As managing director of Bayrock Group, he partnered with Trump and made various stabs at developing Trump Tower Moscow. Cooperated with the government after pleading guilty to racketeering for his role in a $40 million stock fraud scheme in 1998. His father was said to be a lieutenant in Mogilevich’s organization and did business with the Italian Mafia in New York. Childhood friend of Trump lawyer Michael Cohen. Served as a government asset who helped the US track terrorists and mobsters, but is also alleged to be working with Mogilevich. Accompanied Ivanka Trump and Donald Jr. on a 2006 Russia trip, in which he said he arranged for Ivanka to spin around in Putin’s chair in the Kremlin. 51. Alex Shnaider In the early 2000s, he began to develop the tallest building in Canada, the sixty-five-story Trump Tower and Hotel in Toronto. When it came to financing the skyscraper, Shnaider, a billionaire of Russian extraction, turned to Raiffeisen Bank International AG in Vienna, whose affiliate company was said to be a front for RosUkrEnergo. Shnaider is also the son-in-law of Boris Birshtein and worked at Birshtein’s KGB-tied company, Seabeco. 52. Eric Sitarchuk As an attorney, Sitarchuk represented Mogilevich lieutenant Jacob Bogatin during the YBM Magnex scandal and, many years later, Donald Trump himself as owner of the Trump International Hotel in DC, when a wine bar argued that the president’s ownership of the hotel constituted an unfair competitive advantage. 53. Roger Stone A close Trump ally for decades, Stone represented Trump when he moved into the gambling industry in the eighties. Served as adviser to the Trump campaign during the 2016 election. Communicated directly and indirectly with WikiLeaks in order to obtain dirt on Hillary Clinton and hacked emails before the election. 54. Gennady Timchenko Yet another judoka pal of Putin’s who ended up a billionaire, in this case as chairman of the Gunvor oil-trading firm, with a net worth of $15.6 billion.20 Cited as a member of Putin’s inner circle, Timchenko has been subject to sanctions. As an owner of Sibur, a large gas company, he is one of the biggest clients of Navigator Holdings, a shipping firm partly owned by Trump’s commerce secretary Wilbur Ross. 55. Vadim Trincher Along with Alimzhan Tokhtakhounov, Anatoly Golubchik, and Hillel Nahmad, Trincher was a leader of two Russian-American organized crime families—the Taiwanchik-Trincher Organization and the Nahmad-Trincher Organization—which ran “international sports books” that laundered more than $100 million out of the former Soviet Union. They operated out of the sixty-third floor of Trump Tower until they were busted in 2013. 56. Alimzhan “Taiwanchik” Tokhtakhounov Another ringleader of the Taiwanchik-Trincher Organization, Tokhtakhounov has allegedly spent more than three decades working with Mogilevich and the Solntsevo Organization, dating back to the early eighties, when he hung out with Mogilevich and Mikhailov at the Legendary Hotel Sovietsky in the Moscow suburb of Solntsevo. He was indicted for conspiring to fix the ice-skating competition at the 2002 Winter Olympics. After the bust of the gambling ring in Trump Tower in April 2013, he surfaced in November at the Miss Universe pageant in Moscow near Donald Trump. 57. Viktor Vekselberg A member of Putin’s inner circle, Vekselberg is the largest shareholder in the Bank of Cyprus, investing in it at a time when Wilbur Ross, who has since become Trump’s secretary of commerce, was the bank’s vice chairman. 58. Natalia Veselnitskaya A Russian attorney for Denis Katsys’s Cyprus-based Prevezon Holdings, Veselnitskaya set up the June 2016 meeting in Trump Tower with Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort, among others. Veselnitskaya has been an informant to Yuri Chaika, the prosecutor general of Russia. The meeting held forth the promise of handing over damaging information on Hillary Clinton to the Trump campaign, as well as addressing the possibility of lifting sanctions against Russia. Closely aligned with the Agalarovs. 59. Viktor Yanukovych Elected president of Ukraine after being completely remade as a candidate by Paul Manafort. Earned a reputation as a “Putin puppet,” and was ousted in 2014, and exiled to Russia. Manafort, Rick Gates, and Konstantin Kilimnik all worked for Yanukovych for more than a decade—in return for tens of millions of dollars.
Massive Dump Of Things I Noticed On My Fourth Viewing - Feel free to add anything I may miss!
So today I went to go watch Zootopia again, except this time I brought a pen and paper with me with the intent to note down everything I noticed during the viewing. And well, things got a little out of hand and I have way more point than I bargained for. So prepare yourselves for a massive list of Easter eggs, references, observations, and more! I'll do my best to split it up by category in an effort to keep it neat. So here we go: Zootopian Companies, Brands and Stores: • The Cat doing the sound effects for the play uses a Catsio Keyboard • The boy sheep bullied by Gideon Gray is wearing a “Cloven” brand T-shirt • The truck that almost runs into nick outside of Jumbeaux’s Ice cream parlor is for a “Fresh Doe Bakery • There is a store in Tundratown called “Fishtown Market”. I’m not sure if this is what people are referencing when they talk about the fish restaurant in the movie, but it looked to me like it was located in a place called Fishtown rather than being a place that serves fish. • There is a “Lucky-Cat Café” in Little Rodentia - a reference to Big Hero 6 • One of the News Stations at the press conference is “Action Gnus” • Other random ones: Urban Snoutfitters, Tuskie Brand Ice cream, Kodiak, Zuber, Frozen Yakgurt, Furs National Bank, Outmouse apartment complex, Trader Doe’s, Hooflocker, Hungry Maw Frozen Dinner, MuzzleTime, Thygmo-Taxis, Targoat, Mousey’s, Cub Soda, Bad Boa junk shop, an “Ottermotive” store, Itreea The World of Zootopia: • There are 12 Ecosystems/Districts in Zootopia including: Sahara Square, Tundratown, Little Rodentia, The rainforest district, Savanna Central, The Meadow District, The Canal District, Canyonlands, and The Marshlands • The front of the train from Bunnyburrow is shaped like a bear’s head • A Gazelle concert is being advertised on the marquis of the Palm Tree Casino/Hotel in Sahara Square. • Nick Lives on Cyprus Lane in Savanna Central • According to the sign on the gate, Tundratown Limos is open Monday-Friday from 8:00 AM -5:00 PM • City transportation is run by the ZTA – Zootopia Transit Authority, whose motto is “Get Mooooving” • The front of the oncoming train in the chase scene is shaped like a Rhino’s head Possible Errors in the Film: • As seen on multiple calendars, Zootopia takes place during a month with 30 days, were the 1st is on a Friday, and the 30th on a Saturday. According to cesartheking The press conference takes place on May 18th. However, there are 31 days in May. This might be an oversight by the Zootopia Team. • Judy never peels the backing off of the “Junior ZPD” sticker she gives to Finnick, yet it sticks to Finnick’s jumper right away. • Kevin, one of the thugs that grabs Nick and Judy is wearing a $ necklace, even though a Z with 2 lines through it is the symbol used for currency in Zootopia. Timestamps from the movie • Judy starts her first day at 5:00 AM , and gets back from work at 8:39 PM • Judy and Nick Meet with Mr. Big at 8:25 PM • Mr. Otterton went Savage at 8:15 10 days before being interviewed by Nick and Judy • Mr. Manchas is captured by the Timberwolves at 11:29 PM • Both of the ZNN news report broadcasts we see in the movie are at 6:01 PM Stuff I don’t have a category for: • Aside from the tail in the A, the P in Zootopia’s Logo is also an elephant’s trunk • Before the press conference, Judy hears people mentioning the aggressive nature of predators on 4 separate occasions • The Rhino wearing a T-shirt with a skull on it appears 3-4 times, and the shirt itself shows up at least 4 times. • Clawhauser has a Gazelle snow globe on his desk • Of the 14 missing mammals, 5 of them are bears (2 polar, 3 black/brown) 2 are wolves, 2 are tigers, 3 are leopards, 1 is a puma, and 1 is an otter • The van that Finnik drives is a Lobos Z1 • The Ottertons all wear clothing with fish patterns on them • The line of people(?) at the DMV actually advances throughout the DMV scene. It starts with a lion in the shot directly behind Judy, and ends with some hoofed animal. • The ZPD shoulder patch has a silhouette of a rhino’s head looking towards the sky • The voice actress for Young Nick appears to be the same voice actress for Cubert J. Farnsworth from Futurama (confirmed by IMDB) • Bellweather always wears a small metal bell on a chain around her neck • Nick checks both “yes” and “no” on if he has ever been arrested or charged with a crime • Nick is 4 feet and weighs 80 pounds according to his application • Nick lists Night Vision, Sense of smell, and “business savvy” as special abilities. • A movie theater is showing “Star Trek” (can be seen just above the tunnel during the crash) • The park with the kid’s playing soccer has grass patches in a pattern like giraffe fur • The lion that was texting next to the giraffe in the train station is also at the ending concert with the same giraffe. • Nick actually has whiskers, they are just very small and hard to see in most scenes. They can best be seen when Judy hands nick the police application. • Gideon Grey also has whiskers • The pig officer watching Bellweather is different from the one at the DMV – one has green eyes, while the other has blue ones • In the end credits, Mayor Lionheart is reading a magazine called Fancy Cat which has what looks like a housecat on the front. Which is odd because housecats are said not to exist in this worldedit: Byron Howard confirmed on twitter that it is a wildcat. https://twitter.com/ByronPHoward/status/723557188204126208 • Bellweather uses “oh Muttonchops” as a curse. I just found this weirdly dark. Comments/thoughts I have (or responses to things I have already seen here): • Nick does in fact change his shirt from one day to another • I looked at all of the clocks, and none of them use the confusing hybrid between 24-hour and 12-hour time that some people were talking about in the subreddit. • Why does Stu have to explain to Judy what he uses Nighthowlers for? Judy grew up on the farm where they use them so she should know what they are used for. It also does not make sense to claim that they are a recent addition to the farm after Judy had left to become a cop because Judy displays her knowledge of them to Bogo after catching Weaselton. (Bonnie was also bitten by a relative in the past when Judy was younger). I know for sure that I have missed/left out some things so please do comment down below if you have any more, or if you have comments on something I included above. Hopefully we can get a fairly complete list of all the little details in the movie.
Poker pros gear up for Party Poker WPT Merit Classic North Cyprus
For an entire week, the European Poker Tour in Barcelona was the focal point of attention for poker professionals and amateurs alike. Those who couldn't afford to participate, watched the live action over the Internet, hoping to learn a thing or two about how highrollers play. At the opposite end of the spectrum, we have those who spend their time in Barcelona playing at several side events, the highrollers' tournament and the main event. Some were more successful than the other, with Andre Lettau winning the main event, but regardless of their performance in Spain, many started packing for Cyprus. Just a few days after actions subsided in Barcelona, a new tournament begins and the Party Poker WPT Merit Classic North Cyprus promises to be just as exciting. The tournament starts on September 1 and will last for 10 days, with the Merit Cristal Cove Hotel and Casino being the gracious host for the event. As always, the main event is the tournament that everyone hopes to win, despite the fact that it will set players back $4400 just to participate. It has a guaranteed prize pool of $1 million, but more money can be won and those who finish on one of the paid places might be tempted to participate in the $10,500 High-Roller event as well. There is more than meets the eye about the series and some of those who play over the Internet could attend the $125,000 guarantee $1,100 WPT buy-in Merit Poker Cup. The reason for why this tournament is so popular among online players is that qualifiers run live at Party Poker and the winners will get the chance to play for free here. Plenty of poker professionals have announced their intention to participate and some of them have already paid the buy-in, such as Sam Trickett, James Dempsey and Toby Lewis. As kickoff draws near, the field will only grow larger and it is fair to assume that by the time the main events begin, the guaranteed prize pool will be exceeded. On top of that, the weather is always lovely in Cyprus this time of the year, so those who happen to suffer an untimely elimination from the competition will have plenty of things to do outdoors. Satellites run throughout the day at PartyPoker and players can buy-in for as little as one dollar, but time is quickly running out and for many, the direct buy-in remains the only option. from via Casinoreviews
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