Russia’s president Vladimir Putin speaks at a media forum, organised by his electoral block the Peoples’ Front,  in St Petersburg on  April 24th, two days after he awarded medals to 300 journalists  for their Kremlin-friendly coverage. Photograph: Mikhail Klimentiev/EPA/Ria Novosti

Russian president Vladimir Putin secretly gave prestigious awards to pro-Kremlin journalists for their “objective coverage” of the events leading up(...)