RFE/RL Journalist Ismayilova Walks Free From Azerbaijani Prison
RFE/RL journalist Khadija Ismayilova has been released from an Azerbaijani prison after spending 537 days behind bars on what press freedom groups and international lawyers called politically-motivated charges.
A Fierce Savchenko Vows To Continue Fighting
Ukrainian military pilot Nadia Savchenko greeted a crowd at Kyiv airport on May 25 after being freed in a prisoner swap that ended her nearly two years of captivity in Russia.
Top NATO General Says Russia Sees 'Compromise As Weakness'
Speaking with RFE/RL in Brussels on May 24, NATO General Petr Pavel said the alliance's planned build-up on its eastern flank is a response to Russian military actions in Georgia, Ukraine, and Syria.
The Kremlin’s ‘Ministry Of Love’
This parody of a Russian video targeting the “villainous West” that recently circulated on social networks was produced by RFE/RL’s Belarus Service to help young audiences identify propaganda and fight back against trolls. (With English Subtitles/Belarus Service)
Azerbaijan's Other Political Prisoners
The release of RFE/RL journalist Khadija Ismayilova from prison is cause for celebration, but numerous other activists and journalists widely considered to be political prisoners remain behind bars in Azerbaijan.
Savchenko Released, But Fate Of Other Ukrainian Prisoners Unclear
Ukrainian military pilot Nadia Savchenko returned to a hero's welcome in Kyiv on May 25, but at least 12 other Ukrainians remain in Russian prisons on convictions that have been condemned by the Ukrainian and Western governments and some international rights groups.
Savchenko Returns, But Everything Is ‘Just Like Under Yanukovych’
Amid varying reactions to the news of the pilot’s release on Ukrainian social media was speculation that she may pose a political challenge to both President Petro Poroshenko and opposition politician Yulia Tymoshenko. (In Ukrainian)
Eyeing Russia, Sweden Agrees To Give NATO Greater Access
Sweden's parliament has voted 291 to 21 to give NATO more access to the neutral Nordic country for training exercises and in the event of a war.
Putin Proposes Chaika For Third Term As Chief Prosecutor
Lyubov Sobol, a lawyer with Alexei Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation, said the decision reflects Yuri Chaika’s value as someone who “doesn't cross his interests with the interests of Putin's inner circle,” and suggests that “the Kremlin does not need professionals.” (In Russian)
UN Torture Group Suspends Ukraine Visit Over Interference
A delegation of the UN Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture suspended its visit to Ukraine after being denied access to locations where people are alleged to have been deprived of their liberty by the Ukrainian Security Service.
Russian Artist Pavlensky To Honor 'Primorye Guerillas'
Receiving the Vaclav Havel International Prize for Creative Dissent in absentia on May 25, Russian performance artist Pyotr Pavlensky, who is in pre-trial detention in Russia, said he planned to give the prize to a group of men jailed for a series of attacks against police.
‘Those Who Do Not Stand Up Will Sit’
A bill in the Russian State Duma proposes a one-year prison sentence on persons found guilty of deliberately distorting the music or the wording of the national anthem during its public performance or publication in the media, including the Internet. (In Russian) .
Former Belarus President Fined For Meeting With Opposition
Stanislau Shushkevich was fined $320 on May 24 on charges of attending an unsanctioned meeting after participating in a gathering of the Belarusian National Congress, a union of the country’s opposition groups.
COMMENTARY: As Russian Stagnation Approaches 1985 Levels, Crimea Suffers
In a discussion of Russia’s unfulfilled promises to Crimea, civil society activist Sergey Sharov-Delaune told RFE/RL that what existed of a private sector on the peninsula was taken over by Russia’s security forces after annexation, and that a disproportionate share of the budget was spent on military and security costs to the detriment of basic public services. (In Russian)
PRESS RELEASE: Ismayilova Freed From Prison But Intent On Justice
PHOTOGALLERY: The Russian Empire Revisited