Corruption Index: Who's Up, Who's Down?
Seventy-Five Years After Auschwitz Liberation, Naming The Dead Proves Elusive
It's been 75 years since Soviet troops liberated the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp in Poland, but work to name more than 1 million victims is still ongoing. Historians at the site are painstakingly piecing together information, using everything from transport lists to suitcase labels to graffiti left behind on camp walls to try to identify all those killed by the Nazis.
VOX POP: What Do You Expect From The New Government?
A majority of respondents to an informal street poll in Moscow expressed concerns over pensions, improved education and medical care, and social mobility for youth. Many said the recently announced government reshuffle will change nothing, since many of the same people will remain in office, and previous government shake-ups have yielded few results.
Sausage, The Crossing-Guard Dog Of Batumi
Kupata, a former stray whose name means "sausage" in Georgian, accompanies groups of kids as they cross the street and barks at cars to keep them away. His protective behavior has made him a celebrity in Batumi and earned him honors from the local tourist board.
LOCKED UP IN CHINA: The Plight of Xinjiang’s Muslims
Radio Free Radio/Radio Liberty is partnering with its sister organization, Radio Free Asia, to highlight the plight of Muslims living in China's western province of Xinjiang.
Ukraine's Population Shrinks By Nearly A Quarter
A so-called electronic census calculates Ukraine’s population at 37.3 million, a decrease of almost a quarter since 2001 as a result of migration and high mortality, and because it was impossible to count residents in Russia-annexed Crimea and the territories in the country's east that Kyiv doesn’t control.
Russian Accused In Massive Bitcoin Theft Abruptly Extradited To France
Aleksandr Vinnik, a Russian man wanted by the United States for a massive bitcoin-theft scheme, has been extradited from Greece to France, the latest development in a multinational legal fight that focused attention on cryptocurrency money laundering.
Russia’s Mandated Software To Reinforce ‘Spiritual And Moral Values’
Russia’s Federal Antimonopoly Agency has announced criteria governing the mandatory pre-installation of state-mandated software in electronic devices. The agency will consider an application’s popularity, social significance and data security, while prioritizing Russia’s “spiritual and moral values.” (Russian Service)
Russian Stand-Up Comedian Flees Country
Russian stand-up comedian Aleksandr Dolgopolov has fled Russia fearing for his safety after learning police had started investigating videos taken at his performances in different clubs.
Chechen Minister Says Reading Of Koran Therapeutic For Lesbian
Dzambulat Umarov, a minister in Russia's Chechnya region, has said it would be "remedial" for an openly gay woman to read the Koran, following beatings she accused her parents of orchestrating over her homosexuality.
Pious And Patriotic: Ukrainian Church Marks One Year Of Independence From Moscow
For one worshipper, going to church in the Ukrainian capital is more than just soothing for the soul. Speaking of the new autocephalous Orthodox Church of Ukraine, she told RFE/RL, "I like the priests; I like how they conduct services.... I'm Ukrainian and a patriot. I support all that is Ukraine."
Ukrainian Disinformation Bill Draws Criticism
Media freedom watchdogs and journalists’ associations are expressing concern over a bill aimed at combating Russian disinformation that they fear enables excessive governmental intrusion into the media sphere and the harassment of journalists.
British Police Remove Ukrainian National Emblem From Extremist Guide
Britain has removed Ukraine's coat of arms from a police guide for identifying extremist symbols, after the presence of the "tryzub" (trident in Ukrainian) emblem in the document triggered a protest from Ukrainian officials.
Surprise In Belarus And Kyrgyzstan Over News Of Expanded U.S. Travel Ban
Political observers from Belarus and Kyrgyzstan are reacting with surprise and skepticism to media reports that their former Soviet republics could be added to a U.S. travel-ban list.
Bulgaria Charges Three Russians In Absentia For Attempted Poisoning In 2015
Bulgarian prosecutors have charged three Russians in absentia for the attempted murder of a weapons manufacturer, his son, and the production manager of the company "by intoxication with an unidentified phosphorus-organic substance."
Eight Jailed Over Plot To Kill Kosovo President, Prime Minister
A court in Kosovo has sentenced eight ethnic Albanian men found guilty of the attempted murder of a former politician and of plotting to kill the country's president and prime minister in 2017.
OSCE Representative Calls On Tajikistan To Accredit RFE/RL Staff Members
OSCE Representative for Freedom of the Media Harlem Desir has called on Tajikistan to grant accreditations to the “entire team” of RFE/RL’s Tajik Service, saying journalists must be able to work "freely without undue restrictions."
Campaigners Call For Pressure Over Turkmenistan’s Forcibly Disappeared
The “Prove They Are Alive!” rights campaign has called on the international community to pressure Turkmen authorities to curtail the practice of enforced disappearances in the country’s prison system, calling the situation "a gross violation of Turkmenistan’s national legislation and of its international obligations" and "a human rights crime."
POLL: Great Majority Of Russians Acknowledge Political Prisoners, But Say They Themselves Are Free
A recent Levada Center poll shows that 63% of respondents believe that Russians have been convicted for their political views or participation, an increase of 13% since 2004. At the same time, 68% of respondents agree with the statement that they are “free persons within Russian society.” (in Russian, Current Time TV)
COMMENTARY: How Many People Live In Turkmenistan? The Official Figure Is Hard To Believe
MAJLIS PODCAST: The Blackening Skies Of Central Asia
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