As Soviet and Warsaw Pact forces invaded Czechoslovakia on August 21, 1968, crushing a brief period of political liberalization known as the Prague Spring, Radio Free Europe (RFE), in the words of its editors, mobilized “to inform about everything which is taking place.” The country’s radio and TV channels were among the tanks’ first and bloodiest targets. Broadcasting from its headquarters in Munich, RFE worked as a surrogate news provider and offered a signal of hope.
The Warsaw Pact invasion is not generally taught in Russian schools. But many young people in this street poll knew a little, and said the invasion was wrong.
At a "patriotic youth camp" in Serbia, children and young adults learned military skills with the support of Serbian and Russian far-right groups. Then the government stepped in to shut the whole thing down.
Two teenage girls charged with plotting to overthrow the Russian government are now under house arrest. An agent for the Federal Security Service was a key organizer in their group.
Despite a 2015 cease-fire deal, fighting continues in eastern Ukraine between government troops and Russia-backed separatists. RFE/RL spent a day in a Ukrainian military trench near the city of Krasnohorivka capturing the crossfire.
Microsoft says it has uncovered new hacking attempts linked to the Russian government to target U.S. political groups ahead of the U.S. midterm elections in November. The efforts include creating fake Internet domains mimicking the websites of the Washington-based Hudson Institute and the International Republican Institute, and additional domains designed to look as if they belonged to the U.S. Senate.
Britain's new foreign minister in his first major address will urge the European Union to increase sanctions against Russia, saying the bloc should stand "shoulder to shoulder" with the United States, which hit Moscow with new economic sanctions this month.
Russian media reports that the defense ministers of Russia and the Central African Republic met in Moscow on August 21 and, formalizing earlier discussions, signed an agreement on military cooperation. (in Russian, Current Time TV)
Deputy director Aleksei Beloborodov and two other top executives of Russia's Energia Rocket and Space Corporation, which designs and manufactures the Soyuz and Progress spacecrafts, have been arrested on suspicion of attempted fraud.
Three members of a Jehovah's Witnesses church have been placed in pretrial detention in Russia's Far Eastern Kamchatka peninsula on suspicion of "committing a crime linked to extremism" by participating in "a banned religious organization."
PEN International will mark the 100th day of Ukrainian filmmaker Oleh Sentsov's hunger strike with an event at Russia's Embassy in London on August 21 that will include an appeal to Russian authorities to allow representatives to visit Sentsov in prison.
Ukrainian Prosecutor General Yuri Lutsenko told reporters today that a new lead has been identified in the 2016 murder of journalist Pavel Sheremet, but declined to comment further. To date, no suspects in the case have been identified. (Ukrainian Service)
Poland has leveraged its authority as a European Union member to ban a Ukrainian human rights activist from the EU's 26-member Schengen zone, saying she poses a security threat.
Critics say Belarus President Alyaksandr Lukashenka’s unilateral appointment of Sergei Rumas as the country’s new prime minister is unconstitutional, claiming that changes to the government must be approved by parliament. (in Russian, Current Time TV)
Uzbekistan's Interior Ministry has reported that Prime Minister Abdulla Aripov has been hospitalized with "minor injuries" following a traffic accident on August 20.