Vladimir Zhirinovsky, the leader of the nationalist Liberal Democratic Party. Photograph: Shamil Zhumatov/Reuters

He has been called a buffoon, a madman and a Kremlin stooge. In the dour ranks of Russia’s political establishment, Vladimir Zhirinovsky has st(...)

People gather outside a closed McDonald’s restaurant  in the Crimean city of Simferopol today. McDonald’s has shut its restaurants in Crimea for “manufacturing reasons”, the US fast food chain said. Photograph: Reuters

McDonald’s announced today it had closed its restaurants in Crimea, prompting fears of a backlash as a prominent Moscow politician called for (...)