RFE/RL spoke with Ali Feruz, a journalist who fled Uzbekistan to Russia 10 years ago after being tortured in detention, following his arrival in Germany in mid-February after six months in a Russian immigration detention center.
One policeman died on February 22 as Russian fans of Spartak Moscow clashed with fans of the Spanish club Athletic Bilbao during a football match in Bilbao. (Ukrainian Service)
A Moscow court has sentenced Dmitry Borisov, a participant in a March 26 rally organized by Aleksei Navalny, to one year in prison. Borisov is convicted of assaulting a police officer, although the officer did not register a complaint about an assault and recalled the incident for the first time only two months later. (Russian Service)
Yesterday’s grenade attack on the U.S. Embassy in Montenegro raises concerns that the incident could shatter improved stability in the Balkans as the West and Russia battle for influence in the region. What we know so far about the U.S. embassy attacker in Montenegro is here.
Russian tycoon Oleg Deripaska is stepping down as the head of Russia's Rusal aluminum empire, weeks after he appeared on a U.S. list of tycoons said to benefit from their ties with the Kremlin.
The Kremlin has been reluctant to comment on media reports that dozens -- perhaps hundreds, by some accounts -- of Russian mercenaries were recently killed or wounded in Syria. RFE/RL’s Russian Service spoke with Yevgeny Shabayev, a sometime mercenary, in a military hospital that cares for many of the wounded, outside St. Petersburg.
Russian media is reporting that the state-controlled Russian energy holding company Rosseti, which was supposed to assume majority ownership of Crimea’s Krymenergo, has refused to work on the peninsula. Some experts ascribe the refusal to the threat of sanctions; Rosseti has made no official comment. (Crimea Realities website)
Russian opposition politician Aleksei Navalny says he was briefly detained by police and accused of an administrative offense that could result in a 30-day jail term during Russia’s March 18 presidential elections.
A plaque honoring slain Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov will be mounted on the apartment building where he lived in Moscow, the city’s mayor Sergei Sobyanin has said.
A Pskov school's new "antiterrorism" fence looks like one of the three little pigs built it -- and not the smart one. But the rickety stockade erected last month out of donated scrap lumber turned out to be worth 2.14 million rubles ($37,700).
Several female Ukrainian journalists say police officers forced them to undress and undergo invasive security checks in order to attend a Kyiv court hearing where President Petro Poroshenko testified via video link.
Ukraine's border service has banned Mikheil Saakashvili, expelled from the country on February 12, from entering Ukraine for three years, according to a document Saakashvili posted on Facebook on February 21.
The European Union is urging Moldova to press ahead with judicial reforms and undertake a "more decisive fight against corruption," according to a draft text seen by RFE/RL.
Uzbek authorities have arrested the country's former prosecutor-general, the latest in a series of top government officials who have been caught up in an apparent purge by the administration of President Shavkat Mirziyoev.
Secretly recorded audio obtained by RFE/RL appears to show the Uzbek finance minister's eagerness to deliver on President Shavkat Mirziyoev's demands that his ministry be purged of "incompetent" old-guard "rats."
A pro-Russian separatist YouTube channel has reported that Ihor Plotnickiy, a former leader of the so-called Luhansk People’s Republic who was removed from the post in November 2017, has been arrested and is in jail in St. Petersburg. (over 52K views on Russian Service website)
A Levada Center poll has found that Russian attitudes towards the Soviet secret police have changed markedly over the last 20 years, with only 12 percent of respondents associating the notorious CHEKA, the precursor to the KGB, with political terror, compared to 23 percent in 1997. Forty-one percent of current respondents believe the KGB was engaged in “protecting the interests of the country,” compared to 22 percent in 2000. (in Russian, Current Time TV)
[Excerpt from Current Time TV’s daily, first-read for Russian-speaking audiences.]
Argentinian authorities have found 389 kilograms of cocaine in 12 suitcases on the premises of the Russian embassy in Buenos Aires. The drugs are worth approximately 50 million Euros, and are believed to have been intended for shipment to Russia via diplomatic mail.
Sergey Volodin, head of charity Infrastructure, launched an All-Russian competition at schools "Children are drawing Vladimir Putin"; 450 paintings have been submitted already. Although the contest ends on the election day, Volodin says it has nothing to do with the pre-election promotion.Konstantin Kalachev, political expert, comments: "In fact, the drawing contest is a mobilization project. It's not just paintings, there is a promise associated with the ballot that the drawings and letters of children will reach the President himself." (Russian Service)