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Russian paper suing Israeli publisher

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MOSCOW (JTA) — One of Russia’s most respected daily newspapers has filed suit against a Russian-language publishing house in Israel.

The publishers of Kommersant have accused Vesti Ltd. of republishing 51 articles with limited attribution and without permission, according to the Gazeta.ru. Web site. The suit seeks $100,000 in damages.

The Vesti publications reprinted the works with the surnames of the authors and identified that the article came from Kommersant.

"These actions are clearly not sufficient to endorse the legality of the publication of material," said Larissa Petrik, an attorney for Kommersant.

Kommersant’s commercial director, Pavel Filenkov, said the company is seeking damages more for their "educational effect" than any attempt to extract money from the "copy-pasters," he said.

Kommersant’s publishers have filed suit against two other Russian-language news services in Israel, Novosti Nedelya and Globus.

Vesti has waged a similar battle with the Russian versions of Cosmopolitan and Good Housekeeping magazines, but the complaints of brazen copying of other publications may be ignored.

Mikhail Fedotov, a former Russian press minister, said in the earlier cases that any "article published in newspapers and magazines in the Russian Federation may be freely reprinted by other newspapers and magazines, including foreign, provided guidance to the author and an acknowledgment of the source."

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