St Petersburg is the second-largest city in Russia after Moscow. It was founded by Peter the Great in 1703 and served as the capital of imperial Russia for two centuries.
Located on the Baltic Sea, St Petersburg is an important port and the most northerly city in the world with a population in excess of one million people. During the Communist era, it was known as Leningrad from 1924 until 1991. The Siege of Leningrad during the Second World War was one of the longest and most destructive sieges of a major city in modern history. Now rebuilt, the historic center houses architectural gems such as the Winter Palace and is a UNESCO World Heritage site. It is seen as the cultural capital of Russia. Here is an automatic compilation of DW content on St Petersburg.
The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that Russian authorities failed to protect the children involved in the 2004 hostage crisis in Beslan in southern Russia. More than 330 people were killed in the attack.