Pop diva Maruv was the initial pick after wowing the crowd in Kyiv on February 23 at the national final used to select the country’s entrant for Eurovision 2019 in Tel Aviv in May. But despite her winning song, Maruv -- whose real name is Anna Korsun -- won’t be going.
When soldiers without insignia on their green uniforms seized control of Crimea in 2014, top Russian officials, including President Vladimir Putin, repeatedly denied that they were Russian. Until a year later, when Putin started boasting that, actually, they were.
Police on February 27 detained several protesters who demonstrated outside the headquarters of President Nursultan Nazarbayev's ruling party in Almaty and Astana, Kazakhstan's two main cities, the latest in a series of antigovernment rallies. Also on February 27, police in the southwestern city of Zhanaozen detained two RFE/RL correspondents who were covering a protest by local residents who have been demonstrating since February 9.
On February 25, 2019 USS Donald Cook has come to the port of Odesa, however, the first time that U.S. ships visited Ukraine was in August of 1989 when USS Kauffman and Aegis USS Thomas S. Gates visited the Crimean port of Sevastopol. (Ukrainian Service)
Marking four years since the killing of Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov, the United States reiterated its call on President Vladimir Putin's government to "identify publicly those who organized and ordered the crime, and hold them accountable."
Ukrainian presidential candidate Yulia Tymoshenko has called for the impeachment of President Petro Poroshenko, accusing him of treason after a media outlet aired a program alleging that people close to him enriched themselves by smuggling spare parts for military equipment from Russia.
A Russian military court has convicted a former Federal Security Service (FSB) officer and an expert at the cybersecurity company Kaspersky Lab of treason and handed them long prison terms in a case that is reportedly linked to the United States.
In a recent investigation, the anti-corruption watchdog Transparency International says it reviewed more than 11,000 noncompetitive government contracts in Russia from 2014 to 2017, including 499 valued at more than $456K, in which the bid was awarded by President Vladimir Putin and the government without a tender, in many cases to members of the Agalarov, Kusnirovich and Rotenberg families. (Russian Service)
The website of the Stockholm security police reports the arrest of a suspected spy who is believed to have been recruited by a Russian intelligence agent with diplomatic cover to access information technologies of interest to foreign intelligence. (Russian Service)
Dutch officials say they confiscated about 90,000 bottles of Russian vodka thought to be headed from the port of Rotterdam for North Korea in violation of international sanctions.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has announced that numerous Russian entities, including the website of the Russian president, are exposed to regular cyber attacks from the U.S. and the EU. His comments were in response to information that the United States Cyber Command was able to shut down the St. Petersburg Internet Research Agency -- the so-called troll factory -- during the November 2018 U.S. midterm elections. (in Russian, Current Time TV)
A U.S. judge has delayed the sentencing of Maria Butina, the Russian woman who has admitted to working as a foreign agent to infiltrate a gun rights group and build ties with U.S. conservative political activists.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov responded to the RFE/RL report, saying "We are talking about an ordinary student and an ordinary internship."
Some 13,000 people have been killed, a quarter of them civilians, and as many as 30,000 wounded in the war in eastern Ukraine since it broke out in April 2014, the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights said in a document dated February 25.
Ukraine’s National Police has begun an investigation into a complaint filed by RFE/RL journalists working for its Ukrainian investigative program Schemes alleging that oligarch Rinat Akhmetov has been surveilling them for the last six months. (Ukrainian Service)
A fraudulent Facebook campaign in Moldova used the tactics of Russia’s notorious “troll farm” -- the Internet Research Agency -- to promote a political party that, ironically, is at odds with the Kremlin. A media monitoring group found that the ruse promoted Prime Minister Pavel Filip’s ruling Democratic Party (PDM) and was “very close to the activity of Russian troll farms.”
EU lawmakers on February 27 selected former head of Romania's anticorruption agency Laura Codruta Koevesi as their favorite candidate to head a future European public prosecutor's office for financial crimes.
An explosion at a clinic in Uzbekistan's eastern city of Andijon has injured 18 schoolchildren and four teachers who were in the X-ray unit for regular checkups. The government has said the malfunction of a boiler might have caused the blast.