Candidates of the ruling Georgian Dream party appeared poised to win local by-elections held in Georgia, according to preliminary results. The elections come before crucial parliamentary elections in 2020.
Thousands of people in Belgrade joined the 24th-straight march against the Serbian government and President Aleksandar Vucic on May 18.
The main Kosovo Serb political party has won the early mayoral elections held in four predominantly ethnic Serb municipalities in northern Kosovo, according to partial results cited by a coalition of nongovernmental organizations.
Turkish media reports that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has announced that Ankara will begin joint production of S-500 air defense systems with Russia. He said that in addition to the country’s $2.5 billion purchase of Russia’s S-400 missile system, Turkey’s military will also deploy American F-35 fighter jets.(in Russian, Current Time TV)
Having been sworn in as president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskiy has announced he is dissolving parliament, and called for the dismissal of top officials including Prosecutor-General Yuriy Lutsenko, the defense minister, and the head of the state security service.
Russia’s economy slowed sharply in the first quarter, with the government placing blame on reduced consumer demand following an unpopular hike in the value-added tax. The Russian statistic service said on May 17 that GDP rose just 0.5 percent in the first three months of 2019 over the previous year.
A Russian court has ordered private equity fund Baring Vostok to give up control of a bank that is at the center of a fight that has spooked investors and led to the jailing of Michael Calvey , the firm's American founder.
Military authorities in Russia are investigating Lieutenant Colonel Andrei Nikolenko and his wife in connection with their alleged creation of a financial pyramid that has defrauded 17 people. Nikolenko formerly headed a unit at a GRU garrison that was mentioned in Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller's report about Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Three officers from the base and its commander, Alexander Osadchuk, were indicted in the U.S. (Russian Service)
Mikhail Svetov, head of the Libertarian Party of Russia, was attacked by two people in Kazan, Tatarstan, who threw feces on him as he exited a car on May 19 before giving a talk on Russia’s educational system. The attackers have not yet been identified.
Maria Butina, the Russian gun-rights activist convicted in the United States for acting as an unregistered foreign agent, has issued a video appeal for financial contributions to help pay her legal bills.
In his first press interview after returning to Ukraine on May 16, Ukrainian oligarch Ihor Kolomoyskiy told RFE/RL’s investigative program Schemes that he plans to spend the next five years there. He said he currently has no plans to meet with President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, and that his return to the country is unrelated to Zelenskiy’s election. (Schemes, Ukrainian Service)
A day after calling on citizens to block court entrances to protest the release from custody of bitter foe and former President Robert Kocharian, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian has called for a radical reform of the judiciary as part of the “second phase” of the country’s year-old bloodless revolution.
Bulgarian multimillionaire Delyan Peevski hasn't made a public appearance since April 19, 2017, when he attended the National Assembly’s first meeting after being elected as a lawmaker. Now Peevski, whose New Bulgarian Media Group’s newspapers account for a combined 80 percent or so of print distribution in the country, is headed to victory in European Parliament elections later this month.
Tajikistan's Justice Ministry said three prison guards and 29 inmates were killed in a riot that broke out in a maximum-security prison in the Vahdat district, some 15 kilometers east of the capital, Dushanbe, in the second deadly prison clash to hit the the country in the last six months.
The state-run Altyn Asyr website has quoted Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov as telling a cabinet meeting on May 15 that his country has become a wheat-exporting nation, despite reports that the local population is facing severe food shortages.