Explainer: Why Moldovans Are Protesting
In Moldova, one of Europe’s poorest and most fragile states, much of the electorate has been galvanized by the Dignity and Truth civic movement, which has mobilized broad-based public discontent with its condemnation of corruption and the fecklessness of the country's political parties in coping with it. It has organized four major demonstrations in Chisinau, including one on September 6 that brought tens of thousands of people onto the streets in the largest protest in Moldova's post-Soviet history.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed a decree announcing local elections on October 25, 2015, noting they will take place on the basis of a new law intended to prevent political parties from selling winning seats. Consistent with European norms, the law also requires that at least 30 percent of candidates are women. (In Russian, Current Time TV)
Reporters with “Schemes,” an investigative TV program produced in association with RFE/RL’s Ukrainian service, have uncovered plans by ‘Roshen,” a company belonging to Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, to build a facility in Boryspil, a city near Kyiv. The local city council allocated the lands for the new factory, but the lease bypassed the land auction, as required by the country’s land code. (In Ukrainian)
Russia’s State Duma will review the bill, which was introduced by a member of Putin’s United Russia party from Chechnya. Similar laws have been enacted in many Arabic countries and by six states in the US. (In Russian, Current Time TV)
Azeri authorities plan to sue the channel after it aired a program on September 8 called “Cash Investigation,” filmed in conjunction with French President Hollande’s visit to Baku, that featured several opposition leaders and civic activists and dubbed Azerbaijan a dictatorship. (In Russian)
In another encounter with France’s independent media, Azeri First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva and her security guards blocked French investigative journalist Elise Lucet and told her to “be silent” when the reporter confronted her at a photo exhibition in Paris entitled, “Azerbaijan: Land of Tolerance.” Lucet responded that in France journalists can ask questions, and asked her to comment on the imprisonment of human rights defender Leyla Yunus and journalist Khadija Ismayilova.
Two recent security incidents in Uzbekistan demonstrate the difficulty of getting reliable news. An explosion in downtown Tashkent on September 4 raises numerous questions, and reports about two women wearing suicide belts and possessing a pistol and hand grenade have, along with the women, vanished.