Protests Erupt Across Belarus After Top Lukashenka Challenger Barred From Election
Thousands of people across Belarus protested and scuffles broke out with police after a top challenger to President Alyaksandr Lukashenka was barred from running in the country's election next month. More than 140 demonstrators and a dozen journalists were detained across the country, among them two from RFE/RL. Also see Belarus’s Bloggers: A 'Bigger Threat' Than Political Parties For President Lukashenka?
Dozens Protest In Support Of Detained Russian Journalist
Dozens of activists and journalists gathered outside the Lefortovo prison in Moscow on July 13 to support former journalist Ivan Safronov, who was detained on high-treason charges on July 7.
Coastline Corruption? The Political Storm Over A Bulgarian Beach
Hundreds of protesters stormed a Black Sea beach in Bulgaria to protest what they say is endemic corruption among the country's elites.
Sick Sponges Threaten Russia's Lake Baikal
An unknown disease is threatening the vital sponge population at the bottom of Lake Baikal in Russia, considered the deepest lake in the world. Researchers have not established what's making the sponges sick.
PHOTOGALLERY: Another Awful Arctic Accident By Russian Metals Giant Norilsk Nickel
Russian metals giant Norilsk Nickel said around 45 tons of aviation fuel spilled from an Arctic pipeline on July 12.
Eleven Soldiers Killed In Third Day Of Armenia-Azerbaijan Clashes
Seven Azerbaijani servicemen and four Armenian soldiers were reported killed on July 14 in the third day of border clashes involving heavy artillery amid international calls for an immediate de-escalation.
Russian Duma Approves First Reading Of Bill To Suspend NGOs That Receive Funding From U.S.
Russia’s State Duma has provided initial approval of a bill drafted by deputy Andrei Lugovoi that authorizes the Justice Ministry to suspend NGOs that receive money or property from U.S.citizens, engage in political activities, or implement projects and programs “to the detriment of the state.” (Russian Service)
Russian Lawmakers Give Initial Approval To Expanded 'Extremism" Law Aimed At Crimea
Russia's State Duma has approved in the first reading a bill that punishes anyone questioning Moscow’s forcible seizure of the Crimean Peninsula. Duma Chairman Vyacheslav Volodin said on July 14 that the bill will ensure that "calls for the violation of Russia's territorial integrity, including calls to alienate parts of its territory, will be considered extremism."
Russian Demographer Fired After Questioning Government COVID-19 Numbers
Russia has confirmed 733,699 COVID-19 cases as of July 13, but health demographers like Aleksei Raksha have questioned the virus’s conspicuously low death toll, now totaling 11,439. Raksha has stated that the low fatality rate is not due to a superior state response, but rather to how coronavirus statistics are being counted.
Hefty Prison Terms Sought For 'New Greatness' Youth Activists
A Russian prosecutor has demanded that three members of the New Greatness youth activist group facing extremism charges receive between 4 and 7 1/2 years in prison. Critics say the case has been revealed to be a set-up by Russia’s security services, and the rights group Memorial has recognized the accused as political prisoners.
Protesters In Russian Far East Push For Release Of Governor
Hundreds of demonstrators held their fifth peaceful protest in one week in Russia's Far Eastern city of Khabarovsk, demanding the release of the region's governor, Sergei Furgal, who was arrested last week on charges of attempted murder and ordering the killings of two businessmen in 2004-2005.
Navalny Summoned For Questioning In Libel Case
Russian opposition politician Aleksei Navalny has been summoned for questioning in a criminal case launched over comments he made on social media.
Turkey Renews Air Travel With Russia
Turkish state media has reported that Russia and Turkey have agreed to resume flights between the two countries as of July 15. Seven other countries have declared their willingness to receive Russian tourists: the Maldives, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Egypt, Croatia, the United Arab Emirates and Mexico. (in Russian, Current Time TV)
Ukraine Urged To Protect Journalist Threatened Over Her Reporting
Human Rights Watch is urging Ukraine's authorities to investigate death threats against Kateryna Sergatskova, a local independent journalist who has written about the alleged influence of far-right groups on the fact-checking website StopFake.org.
Ukrainian Medic Killed By Russia-Backed Separatists As Fighting In Donbas Intensifies
Russia-backed separatists in Donbas have killed a Ukrainian military medic and injured a soldier on a mission to recover a body. Local residents in the village of Zaitseve told RFE/RL that fighting has intensified over the last two weeks. (Ukrainian Service)
North Macedonia Holds Critical Elections For Its European Future
Voting is under way in North Macedonia in parliamentary elections that may determine the pace of the Balkan state’s Euro-Atlantic trajectory. The tightly contested July 15 vote is the country's first poll under its new name.
Kazakh Civil Rights Activist Gets One Year In Prison For 'Inflicting Bodily Damage'
Well-known Kazakh civil rights activist Sanavar Zakirova has been sentenced to one year in prison for 'inflicting bodily damage' on a 39-year-old woman at a rally in March, a charge she denies.
IRAN: Why Are Iranians Angry About A Long-Term Deal With China?
INFOGRAPHIC: How COVID-19 Is Affecting Russian Incomes
WATCH NOW: CEPA And RFE/RL Discuss Belarus Ahead of the Presidential Election
LAUDED: Russian Journalist Prokopyeva Wins CPJ Press Freedom Award
GIVE: Help Russian Journalist Svetlana Prokopyeva