U.S. Ambassador Says NATO 'Most Effective Defensive Alliance' Ever
The U.S. ambassador to Moscow says next week's NATO Summit in Warsaw will bolster NATO’s defensive response to Russia, and that NATO remains the "most effective alliance man has ever put together."
The Daily Vertical: Using Democracy As A Weapon
Kremlin officials and surrogates are cheering the results of the Brexit referendum, but such a simple democratic exercise could never take place in Vladimir Putin’s Russia.
Belarus Leader’s Message Lost In Translation
President Alyaksandr Lukashenka sparked a new round of internet memes with an address to the country’s national assembly on June 22 when, speaking about the need to revitalize the country, he urged citizens to “take off the clothes and work.” (In Russian/Current Time TV)
Erdogan Appeals For Normalization With Russia
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he hopes for a "quick" normalization of ties with Russia after expressing condolences to the family of a Russian pilot who died after Turkish forces downed his plane.
Russia Reportedly Tests Torpedoes In Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyzstan's General Staff says it was not informed about a reported trial by the Russian navy this week of a new “Case” type nuclear submarine torpedo in eastern Kyrgyzstan’s Issyk-Kul lake. (In Russian)
Lithuania Rues Losing Strong Defender Of Russian Sanctions
Lithuania, concerned about losing a strong defender of Russian sanctions in the European Union, has called for a gradual British exit from the EU that preserves ties with London.
Iceland’s New President Seeks Trade, Not Sanctions
In an exclusive interview with RFE/RL, newly elected President of Iceland Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, who assumes his post on August 1, said he will not engage in debates on Russian sanctions, adding that Reykjavik hopes the situation will allow sanctions to be lifted soon, as friendly trade relations benefit everyone. (In Ukrainian)
Private Meeting Of Ukrainian Officials And Oligarchs Draws Scrutiny
RFE/RL’s investigative program Schemes has reported that former Ukrainian Premier Arseniy Yatsenyuk, oligarch Ihor Kolomoyskiy, and Andriy Kobolev, head of Ukraine’s state-owned company Naftogaz, appear to have met at the offices of Ukraine’s Interior Ministry ahead of a meeting of the board of Ukrnafta to discuss settling the company’s gas debt to Ukraine. Kolomoyskiy is a key shareholder of Ukrnafta, a state-owned gas giant. (In Ukrainian)
Eastern Ukraine’s Unemployed Collect Apples In Krasnodar
Amidst unemployment levels in separatist-controlled regions of Ukraine that are almost double the jobless rate in territories controlled by Kyiv, residents are seeking seasonal labor harvesting fruit in Russia’s Krasnodar and Stavropol regions. (In Ukrainian)
After Two Decades, Belarus Brings Back Its Coins
Belarusians haven't had a coin in their pocket since kopeks went out of circulation two decades ago, but small change returns on July 1 as part of a currency redenomination that is slicing four zeros off the country’s ruble.
Tajik Reconciliation Day -- Table For One
The Islamic Renaissance Party's participation in Tajikistan’s government demonstrated that cooperation between a secular government and an Islamic opposition was possible, but now the party is banned.
Balkans Without Borders: Russian Anxiety About Montenegro’s NATO Accession
LONG READ: Inside Kosovo’s Islamist Caldron