Belarus Arrests Observer Who Alleged Election Fraud
Belarus police detained and later released an election observer and parliamentary candidate who accused a polling station of fraud and demanded a ballot recount. Human rights activists have reported that over one third of all independent election observers were forcibly removed from polling stations. (Current Time TV)
Georgian Police Use Water Cannons On Protesters In Tbilisi
Riot police in Tbilisi have used water cannons on protesters who were blocking the entrance to parliament and arrested several people demanding early elections.
Slovak Authorities Seize 700 Kilograms Of Smuggled Amber From Ukraine
Slovak authorities have detained four Ukrainians who allegedly smuggled more than 700 kilograms of raw amber, valued at approximately $722,000, into the country.
Serbs Protest Pollution From Chinese-Owned Mining Complex
People in the Serbian city of Bor have been protesting over dangerous levels of pollution linked to a nearby mining and smelting complex. Environmentalists say the problem has worsened dramatically since a Chinese company took over the mining operation last year.
How Theater Professionals Helped Stage The Velvet Revolution
Thirty years ago, theater professionals in Czechoslovakia used their skills and renown to help rally public opinion against the brutal breakup of a November 17, 1989 anti-government rally in Prague.
Iran Rocked By Deadly Fuel Protests
Video trickling out of Iran amidst a near-total Internet blackout depicts protests that have spread to as many as 100 cities since fuel prices spiked four days ago.
Moscow City Court Upholds Whelan Detention
A Moscow City Court has upheld a court decision prolonging the pretrial detention of Paul Whelan, a U.S. citizen charged in Russia with espionage, until December 29. Whelan’s lawyers at an appeal hearing on November 19 had requested house arrest.
France Says Russia’s Return Of Ukrainian Ships Builds 'Trust'
France has welcomed Russia's return of three Ukrainian naval vessels that were seized by Moscow in the Black Sea last year, saying that the move would facilitate a planned December summit in Paris on resolving the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
Russia Conducts Military Drills In Black Sea
Russia has launched military exercises in the Black Sea to train forces in naval combat, detecting and destroying submarines, striking coastal command posts, and repelling air attacks. Ukraine reports that, since annexing Crimea in 2014, Russia has increased the number of its ships in the region from 34 to 49, including the number of submarines from 1 to 7. (Ukrainian Service)
Clock Ticking In U.S. Congress As Russia Presses Ahead With Nord Stream 2
As the impeachment inquiry hogs the spotlight in Washington, Russia is bringing its $11 billion Nord Stream 2 pipeline closer to completion. Bills that would impose sanctions on companies involved in the project, which aims to deliver natural gas to Europe via a new pipeline beneath the Baltic Sea, sailed through House and Senate committees last summer with resounding bipartisan support.
Russia's Yandex Proposes New Governance Structure Amid Kremlin Pressure
Yandex, Russia’s largest search engine, has proposed creating a new "public interest foundation" that would own the company's "golden share” and oversee its operations. Yandex co-founder Arkady Volozh told Interfax that the plan has received “broad support” from the Kremlin. Cybersecurity analyst Andrei Soldatov posted on Twitter that the proposal showed "the Kremlin found a way to tame Yandex."
Russian Justice Ministry Dismisses Problem Of Domestic Violence
In an official comment on four cases of domestic abuse before the European Court of Human Rights, Russia’s Justice Ministry said the problem is “quite exaggerated,” and that in some cases men suffer more than women. The ministry has dismissed proposals for a separate law on domestic violence, and said that some female victims “are trying to undermine” government efforts to improve the situation. (in Russian, Current Time TV)
European Court Orders Russia To Compensate Bolotnaya Activists
The European Court of Human Rights has ordered Russia to pay compensation to Leonid Razvozzhayev and Sergei Udaltsov, two Russian activists who received prison terms for their roles in organizing a May 2012 protest against President Vladimir Putin and his government on Moscow's Bolotnaya Square.
Zelenskiy Appoints U.S. Lawyer As Adviser For Diaspora Outreach
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has appointed American lawyer Andrew Mac as a new adviser with a mandate to build relations with ethnic Ukrainians living in the United States and elsewhere. Mac, who heads the Washington, D.C., office of the Kyiv-based law firm Asters, was named to the position on November 5.
Ukrainian Investigators Petition To Lift Ex-President Poroshenko's Immunity
Ukraine's State Bureau of Investigations (DBR), a newly established law enforcement body tasked with investigating high-level crimes, has requested that former President Petro Poroshenko be stripped of immunity on suspicion of abusing power and calling for the overthrow of the government.
OSCE Says 'Fundamental Freedoms Disregarded' In Belarusian Vote
International observers have concluded that "fundamental freedoms were disregarded" in snap parliamentary elections in Belarus in which opposition candidates failed to win a single seat.
Turkmen Turn To Uzbekistan For Cash
Amid a severe cash shortage in Turkmenistan, hundreds of people are lining up at the Uzbek Embassy in the Turkmen capital, Ashgabat, with the hope of getting a visa to Uzbekistan to withdraw money from ATM machines there.
MAJLIS PODCAST: The EU’s Central Asia Strategy For Future Cooperation
PRESSROOM: RFE/RL Afghan Service Receives David Burke Award