The Escort And The Oligarch: 'Nastya Rybka' Goes From Accusation To Apology
A 28-year-old Belarusian escort who said she had evidence of Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election appears to have rowed back from her claims, in her first interview since being released from detention in Moscow.
The Art Of The Steal: Suspect Detained After Brazen Moscow Gallery Heist
Russian police have detained a 31-year-old man after a painting was stolen from a Moscow gallery in broad daylight.
Kyrgyz Women Take Anti-Kidnapping Campaign To The Catwalk
A Kyrgyz fashion designer invited women who have endured forced marriages or domestic abuse to appear in a fashion show inspired by great female figures in history. The event was part of a campaign meant to shed light on the illegal but persistent practice of bride kidnapping.
A 'School For Superheroes' For Sick Children In Ukraine
Ukraine says it will ensure children in major regional hospitals receive an education from September 2019. Some 2,000 children are currently educated in hospitals, but one group says 10,000 hospitalized children need schooling.
BREAKING: Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko Says He Will Seek Reelection In March
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has declared he will seek reelection on March 31.
Russia Vows To Support Maduro, Criticizes U.S. Sanctions Against Venezuelan Oil Company
In comments on January 29, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov lashed out at the United States, accusing Washington of "publicly setting a course for illegal regime change" by recognizing opposition leader Juan Guaido as Venezuela's interim president.
Ukraine Security Service Publishes Data On Hundreds Of Alleged Russian Mercenaries
The Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) has published the passport data of hundreds of Russian citizens it claims work for the Russian private military company known as PMC Wagner, and have visited African countries. SBU head Vasyl Hrytsak says the data connect the passports with the General Directorate of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, formerly the GRU. The passports were issued by the same office that issued documents to two military intelligence officers accused in the 2018 poisoning of Sergei Skripal, and in most cases have numbers that are part of the same series, differing only in the last two digits. (Russian Service)
Ukraine To Refuse Election Observers From Russia
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin said at a January 28 press conference that his ministry will not register official observers from Russia for the March 2019 presidential election, adding that he hoped that the Central Election Commission would implement a similar ban. Russia’s foreign ministry has said it would seek to send observers to the polls. (Ukrainian Service)
Facebook To Curb Outside Electoral Ads Ahead Of Ukraine Vote
The social-media giant Facebook has announced that it will prohibit electoral ads bought outside Ukraine from appearing there in the run-up to the country's March presidential election.
Ex-Chief Of Lead Contractor For Troubled Russian Space Facility Found Dead
Dmitry Savin, 54, the former chief of Dalspetsstroi, the main contractor involved in the often-delayed, corruption-plagued construction of Russia's new Vostochny Cosmodrome, has been found dead in a suspected suicide, media reports say.
Kosovo Premier Proposes Conference To Normalize Relations With Serbia
Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj has proposed on Facebook an international conference to work out a final deal for his country and Serbia to normalize relations.
Kosovo Emergency! What's That Number Again?
Many people in Kosovo do not know the quickest way to call police in an emergency. Experts say that's because there have been three different emergency numbers over the past 20 years, with no adequate public service campaign to inform people of the latest change.
‘We Have Succeeded In Surviving’ -- An Interview With Exiled Tajik Islamic Party Leader Muhiddin Kabiri
According to Tajikistan's government, the disbanded Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan (IRPT) is a "terrorist organization" with evolving ties in the global network of extremist groups. Most others view the IRPT differently. In an effort to provide a fuller picture of the dispute, RFE/RL asked IRPT leader Muhiddin Kabiri to respond to questions about his organization.
U.S., Russian Leaders Urged To Help Ethnic Kazakhs In Xinjiang
A group of ethnic Kazakhs originally from China has urged the U.S. and Russian presidents to help secure the release of their relatives whom they say are being held at so-called “reeducation camps” in the northwestern Chinese region of Xinjiang.
Uzbekistan Extradites BTA Bank Case Suspect To Kazakhstan
Uzbekistan has extradited Artur Trofimov to neighboring Kazakhstan in a politically charged case involving the Kazakh bank BTA. Trofimov is accused of embezzling and laundering significant amounts of cash from BTA in 2005-2009, and creating and leading an organized criminal group.
UN Chief Warns Against Rising Anti-Semitism
In comments made on January 28 at an annual ceremony marking International Holocaust Remembrance Day, United Nations secretary-general Antonio Guterres warned that anti-Semitism is on the rise, and hatred of Jews is getting worse across the world.
Report Finds Failed Efforts To Fight Corruption In Eastern Europe, Central Asia
Transparency International says much of Eastern Europe and Central Asia is failing to make progress in lowering the perceived levels of public sector corruption, threatening democracy across the region. More than two-thirds of the 180 countries on the Corruption Perceptions Index 2018 released by the Berlin-based watchdog on January 29 scored below 50 on its 0-100 scale.
POLL: Poll Finds Historic Drop In Ratings For United Russia Party And Putin
A poll by the Russian state-owned Public Opinion Research Center finds that 32.7% of respondents support the United Russia Party, the party’s lowest approval rating since January 2006. President Vladimir Putin has a 62% approval rating, but polls at only 32.8% for trustworthiness, followed by Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu with 13.4%, and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov with 13.1%. (Russian Service)
OBITUARY: Aleksandr Tizyakov, Participant In 1991 Soviet Coup Attempt
Aleksandr Tizyakov, a member of so-called Gang of Eight that placed Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev under house arrest and tried to take over the collapsing Soviet Union in 1991, has died in the city of Yekaterinburg. He was 92.