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'This Is Exploding': Journalists Recall Hectic Days Of Velvet Revolution
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'This Is Exploding': Journalists Recall Hectic Days Of Velvet Revolution


Moldovan Government Collapses; EU Calls Development 'Worrying'

Moldovan Prime Minister Maia Sandu's pro-Western government has collapsed after losing a no-confidence vote in parliament.

Nationalist Rally In Poland Draws Far-Right Activists From Across Europe

Tens of thousands of nationalists marched in the Polish capital, Warsaw, to mark the country's Independence Day on November 11. As demonstrators chanted slogans against immigration and the EU, they were joined by supporters of far-right parties from other European countries.

Russian Napoleon Expert Jailed After Grisly Killing

There are calls for a probe into the management of St. Petersburg State University after a prominent professor and Napoleon expert reportedly confessed to killing a former student.

Tourists Head Deep Into Once-Secret Moscow Bunker

Tourists are flocking to a secret bunker in central Moscow which used to house 120 tons of secret Soviet documents that needed to be protected in case of nuclear war. The site only became a museum in 2018 after the documents were removed.


Ukrainian Court Blocks Investigators’ Access To RFE/RL Journalists' Data

A Ukrainian appeals court has overturned a lower court's ruling granting state investigators access to editorial communications and other data belonging to journalists with RFE/RL’s investigative Schemes unit.

Moscow Accuses U.S. Of ‘Hunting’ Russians After Israeli Extradites Suspected Hacker

The Russian Embassy in Washington, D.C. says it has lodged a diplomatic protest after Israel extradited a Russian national to the United States, where he is suspected of stealing more than $20 million from U.S. consumers through credit card fraud. The embassy also accused Washington of "hunting" Russian citizens across the world.

Russia To Decrease U.S. Dollar Investments In Its Sovereign Wealth Fund

In explaining the decision, Russia’s Finance Ministry has cited “geopolitical risks,” and claimed that the decrease in the share of U.S. dollars in Russia’s foreign exchange reserves has already led to a loss of almost $8 billion. The Chinese Yuan would likely replace a portion of the U.S. dollar reserves. As of November 1, 2019 Russia’s sovereign wealth fund was valued at $124.5 billion. (Russian Service)

Czech People In Need Foundation Declared 'Undesirable' In Russia

The Czech NGO People in Need has become the latest foreign group to be placed on the Russian Justice Ministry’s blacklist of “undesirable” organizations.

Kadyrov Scores Highest On Kremlin Performance Management Metrics

Russian media reports that Chechnya has achieved the most successful results in an early 2019 Kremlin initiative holding regional governors accountable to key performance indicators. Ramzan Kadyrov’s republic scored higher than other regions in trust in President Vladimir Putin, public trust in the governor, and election results. The Republic of Bashkortostan, the Tula and Kursk regions, and Russia-annexed Crimea were also credited with demonstrating high levels of trust in the president. (Russian Service)

Zelenskiy Proposes Land Reform

In an address to parliament earlier this week, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy decried the absence of a market in agricultural land, and said that Ukrainian citizens should have the right to buy and sell farmland. He said the law will be amended accordingly, and proposed a referendum to determine whether foreigners and foreign companies may also be allowed to do so. Some observers fear that an open market will be exploited by corrupt interests or dominated by foreign buyers. (Russian Service)

Lawyer For Suspect In Killing of Russian Lawmaker Voronenkov In Ukraine Shot Dead

A lawyer for the suspected planner behind the killing of former Russian State Duma Deputy Denis Voronenkov has been killed while hunting in the Ukrainian region of Zhytomyr west of Kyiv. Police have opened investigations under preliminary classifications of attempted murder, premeditated murder, and illegal handling of weapons.

Ukrainian Detectives Detain Bribery Suspect In Presidential Office

Ukrainian anti-corruption detectives on November 12 detained a presidential office department head for allegedly demanding a $300,000 bribe. The official was arrested while taking half the amount from an individual as payment for help in getting a person appointed to a management position at the state-run Naftogaz oil and gas conglomerate.

High-Ranking Ukrainian Defense Official Arrested In Faulty-Bulletproof-Vest Case

A Kyiv court ordered a Defense Ministry major general to serve six months in pretrial detention or be released on bail set at $3.1 million in a public-procurement embezzlement case involving substandard bulletproof vests. Dmytro Marchenko, the main directorate chief at the Defense Ministry, is accused with four other suspects of causing about $4 million in losses to the state when purchasing 100,000 sets of military uniforms, 20,000 inferior bulletproof vests, and defective tents for the army at inflated prices.

Six Crimeans Get Lengthy Prison Terms On Extremism Charges

A Russian court has handed lengthy prison terms to six men from Ukraine’s Crimea region, five of whom are Crimean Tatars, for being members of the banned Hizb ut-Tahrir Islamic group.

Armenian Parliament Rejects Bill Banning Same-Sex Marriage

Armenia's parliament has rejected consideration of a bill seeking to outlaw same-sex marriage. A majority of lawmakers on November 12 said the draft law proposed by the opposition Prosperous Armenia Party was redundant, since the country's constitution already defines marriage as a union between "a woman and a man."

Kosovo's Thaci Says Serbia Dialogue Should Continue 'Without Conditions'

Following talks with his Serbian counterpart in Paris, Kosovar President Hashim Thaci told RFE/RL that dialogue between Pristina and Belgrade on normalizing ties should continue, but “without any conditionality.”

Ghana Withdraws Kosovo Recognition

Ghana says it has reversed its recognition of Kosovo as an independent state. A November 11 statement from the Ghanaian Foreign Ministry said the 2012 decision recognizing the former Serbian province’s statehood turned out to be “premature” in view of UN Security Council Resolution 1244.

New Details Link Ex-Soldier To Alleged IS Terrorist Attack In Tajikistan

One of the suspected attackers who raided a Tajik border crossing in a reported Islamic State attack last week had previously served as a soldier where the deadly assault took place, a Tajik security official told RFE/RL.

MAJLIS PODCAST: The ‘Terrorist’ Attack In Tajikistan: What’s Fact And What’s Fiction

IRAN: So Long Omar Khayyam: Iran Revamps Its Textbooks

PRESSROOM: REPORTING 1989: RFE/RL’s Role In The Revolutions Of Eastern Europe

PRESSROOM: READ AND SUBSCRIBE To Our New Journalists In Trouble Newsletter

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