As Putin was insisting he would "spare no effort to settle all disputes with our partners by political and diplomatic means," his military was busy intimidating Russia's neighbors.
Russia’s Left Front movement, led by Sergei Udaltsov, staged a rally in Moscow around the slogan, “We Need Honest Elections,” and urged Russians to unite around Communist party candidate Pavel Grudinin, who himself didn’t attend the event. (Russian Service)
In addition to family and friends, Norouz is also about spring-cleaning.
Diplomats expelled by Britain in retaliation for Russia's alleged poisoning of an ex-spy planned to board a flight for Moscow on March 20 as Britain's National Security Council was due to discuss possible new measures against Russia over the incident.
Commenting on the absence of a congratulatory message from U.S. President Donald Trump to Vladimir Putin on his reelection as president, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on March 20 that he didn't consider Trump's silence an "unfriendly move."
In a series of Twitter posts on March 18 and March 19, Margarita Simonyan, who has headed the state-funded TV channel since its beginning, made little effort to maintain any sort of journalistic distance from politics.
Russia’s Roskomnadzor Threatens To Block Roskomnadzor
Russian media regulator Roskomnadzor has threatened to block the messenger platform Telegram within 15 days if it does not comply with a request to transfer its encryption keys to the Federal Security Service. Telegram lawyer Ramil Akhmetgaliev has protested the demand as violating users’ right to privacy, and insisted that such action by Roskomnadzor must be authorized by a court order. (in Russian, Current Time TV)
Hungary’s foreign ministry announced plans to block a meeting between EU defense ministers and Ukraine scheduled for April, and a Ukraine-NATO summit slated for the summer, over a Ukrainian law on education that Budapest believes violates the rights of the Hungarian minority in Ukraine. (Ukrainian Service)
Fikret Huseynli, a journalist who fled his homeland of Azerbaijan over a decade ago, says he got word early on March 5 that suspicious-looking men were trying to track him down in Kyiv.
Six MiG-29 fighter jets that Russia donated to Serbia will have their first test flights and enter service by the end of the 2018, Serbia’s Defense Ministry has said.
Uzbek human rights activist Gaybullo Jalilov has been released after serving eight years in prison.
The death of a schoolteacher whom relatives and colleagues say was hit by a truck while cleaning streets under local government orders in Samarkand ahead of a presidential visit has sparked controversy in tightly controlled Uzbekistan.
Former KGB and FSB officer Boris Karpichkov told RFE/RL he has survived two assassination attempts with poisonous powder, after which he lost 30 kilograms and all his hair, and claims he received a list from a former colleague in February with eight names targeted for political assassination, included Sergei Skripal’s and his own. (over 78K pageviews on Russian Service website)