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(RFE/RL Russian Service)


VOX POP: What Are Putin’s Main Achievements?

A majority of respondents to an informal poll in Moscow cited geopolitical and military accomplishments, including the annexation of Crimea, and increased living standards and stability. Some complained about social standards. One person expressed concern about the dearth of hospitals and kindergartens in small cities, but insisted she would vote for Putin. (Russian Service)

Russian Elections 101: The Formalities

While there’s little doubt Vladimir Putin will be reelected in a Russian presidential ballot critics call rigged to ensure his victory, there are still some formalities to go through.

Europe Alarmed By Slowing Clocks

Some Europeans have noticed their electric clocks losing as much as six minutes in recent weeks. Kosovo and Serbia are trading blame over the lost power and minutes.

Rakhmat, Mr. Roboto! A Kyrgyz Invention That Could Cook Your Dinner

Sanjar Jumabekov, a young engineer from Bishkek, has built a robot that might be capable of speaking Kyrgyz and performing useful chores one day.


7:40am -- Good Morning!

[Excerpt from Current Time TV’s daily, first-read for Russian-speaking audiences.]

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has called British Prime Minister Theresa May’s speech before the British parliament about the Skripal poisoning a “circus show.” Vladimir Jabarov, chairman of the Federation Council’s Foreign Affairs committee called the British investigation a delusion, and said there has been no poisoning in history “since Trotsky's time.”

Lavrov Says Russia Did Not Poison Ex-Spy

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has denied that Moscow was behind the poisoning of former double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Britain.

U.S. 'Outraged' Over 'Likely' Poisoning By Russia

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the United States is "outraged" over what he said was Russia's likely poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal in Britain, and warned that Moscow will face an allied response over the matter.

Top U.S. Official Warns Of 'Destructive' Russian Role In Balkans

Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Wess Mitchell warned of what he called Moscow’s "increasingly destructive role" in the Balkans in comments made in Pristina on March 12. (Balkan Service)

Estonia Says Russian Plane Violated Its Airspace In The Baltic Sea

Estonia says a Russian military cargo plane has violated its airspace near Vaindloo Island in the Baltic Sea.

European Commission Experts Urge 'Code Of Principles' For Social-Media Networks

The March 12 report by an expert group on fake news has called for a “code of principles” that online platforms and social networks should commit to, but does not blacklist specific media companies or identify those responsible for spreading fake news.

Putin's 'Ukrainians, Tatars, Jews' Remark Triggers Backlash

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s recent suggestion that Jews and other minorities in Russia could have been behind the meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election has prompted a backlash in the United States.

Putin To Visit Crimea Before Vote

Russian President Vladimir Putin is scheduled to visit Crimea on March 14, the last day of his presidential election campaign, in order to attend events linked to the fourth anniversary of the annexation of the peninsula from Ukraine.

Crimean Tatar Leader Calls For Boycott Of Presidential Polls

Crimean Tatar leader Refat Chubarov has called on his community to refuse to participate in Russia’s presidential elections, which will be held on the peninsula on March 18, the day marking the 4th anniversary of Crimea’s annexation by Russia. (in Russian, Current Time TV)

One Ukrainian Soldier Killed, Three Wounded In Country's East

Ukraine’s Defense Ministry said on March 12 that Russia-backed separatists violated a frequently breached cease-fire several times during the previous 24 hours by firing machine guns.

Serbian Ultranationalists Making Mark Despite Failure At The Ballot Box

Serbia’s ultranationalist Zavetinici, or Oath Keepers, performed poorly in Belgrade’s March 4 municipal elections, but nationwide their profile is increasing as they ride a wave of far-right nationalist sentiment that has washed over Europe.

BLOGGING THE CAUCASUS: Can Reforms Restore Public Confidence In Georgia's Police?

MOST READ/RUSSIA: A Product Without A Name: Why Does Russia Need A Nuclear-Powered Cruise Missile?

Valentin Gibalov, an expert on nuclear technologies, told RFE/RL that the Kremlin’s announcement of a new super-class cruise missile most likely refers to plans to continue a project from the 1960s that resembled a U.S. military project known as SLAM. Gibalov says producing the weapon is theoretically possible, but would be extremely expensive and resource-intensive, and that tests could cause radioactive fallout over the missile’s flightpath. (over 53k views on Russian Service website)

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