as a representative in the supreme body of legislative power".
In 2009, Yakunin survived the public fallout from a derailment on the flagship high-speed rail line from Moscow to St Petersburg in which more than two dozen people were killed, a crash later blamed on terrorists.
Following the tribulations of the Mongol invasion, the Russian Church was pivotal in the survival and life of the Russian state.
Despite the politically motivated murders of Mikhail of Chernigov and Mikhail of Tver, the Mongols were generally tolerant and even granted tax exemption to the Church.
In 863–69, the Byzantine Greek monks Saint Cyril and Saint Methodius, both from Greek Macedonia, translated parts of the Bible into Old Church Slavonic language for the first time, paving the way for the Christianization of the Slavs and Slavicized peoples of Eastern Europe, the Balkans, Ukraine, and Southern Russia.
There is evidence that the first Christian bishop was sent to Novgorod from Constantinople either by Patriarch Photius or Patriarch Ignatios, c. By the mid-10th century, there was already a Christian community among Kievan nobility, under the leadership of Byzantine Greek priests, although paganism remained the dominant religion.