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Russia's Potemkin Robot

Russia’s Potemkin Robot

It turns out that the machine marvel named Boris that was unveiled at a youth career forum in Yaroslavl on December 11 was anything but.

VISUAL REPORTS

OAS Expresses ‘Greatest Concern’ Over Russian Military Planes In Venezuela

The White House said on December 12 that it had received assurances by the Kremlin that two nuclear-capable strategic bombers it sent to Venezuela would leave the country on December 14. The unusual display of Russian military force in South America raised tensions with the United States.

The Remains Of Chagan, A Secret Soviet Nuclear Town

An eerie wind is the only sound to be heard in a once-secret northern Kazakh town which used to be the hub of the Soviet nuclear weapons program.

Uncorking Uzbekistan's Wine Business

Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyoev has called for the modernization of the country's wine industry and brought 60,000 vine cuttings from France, but observers wonder whether the country can transform an ancient tradition into a competitive, modern industry.

PHOTOGALLERY: The Secret Lives Of The Stasi

Chilling photos uncovered by a German artist reveal the Stasi's methods to monitor and terrorize their citizens.

OTHER NEWS

Hundreds Jailed In 'Terrible Global Assault' On Journalists

At least 251 journalists around the world are behind bars for their work, as “authoritarian regimes increasingly use imprisonment to silence dissent,” according to the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Kyiv Court Says Lawmaker's Release Of Manafort Documents Interfered In U.S. Election

A Kyiv court said that a Ukrainian lawmaker and a top anticorruption official’s decision in 2016 to publish “black ledger” documents linked to President Donald Trump’s then-campaign chairman Paul Manafort led to interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election and harmed Ukrainian state interests.

Russian Duma Reviews Punishments For False News

A group of Russian lawmakers has introduced a package of bills in the State Duma envisaging fines of up to 1 million rubles ($15,000) for spreading information deemed to be false. The package proposes a ban on the publication in the media and on the Internet of "untruthful socially significant information disguised as authentic reports” that threatens “mass violations of public order and security,” and disruption of public facilities, transport and social infrastructure.

Duma Proposes To Revise Ban On Nazi Symbols

Prompted by a January court case, Russian Duma deputies are proposing new legislation allowing the publication of Nazi and extremist images and symbols if they are presented in historical context or for educational purposes, and on condition that they are accompanied by a condemnation of the ideologies associated with them. (Russian Service)

Ahead Of Brussels Summit, Merkel Indicates Support For Extending Russia Sanctions

Citing Russia’s actions in the strait of Kerch on November 25, during which Russian border guards attacked Ukrainian ships and detained their crew members, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has announced her intent to support extending sanctions against Russia for an additional year. (Russian Service)

Seven In Russia Detained For Supporting Extremist Groups In Middle East

Russian authorities say they have detained seven people in and around the Moscow region and the three North Caucasus regions of Chechnya, Daghestan, and Ingushetia who are suspected of financially supporting the militant group Islamic State and the Al-Nusra Front.

Kremlin Expels Slovak Diplomat In Spy Dispute

Russia has declared a Slovak military diplomat persona non grata following Bratislava’s expulsion of a Russian diplomat suspected of spying last month.

'Sentsov Has Won,' Cousin Tells Sakharov Prize Ceremony

Speaking at the Sakharov award ceremony in Strasbourg on December 12 honoring imprisoned Ukrainian film director Oleh Sentsov, Sentsov’s cousin Natalya Kaplan said, “Thanks to his action, the entire world has begun speaking about Russian repressions...Oleh has drawn a lot of attention to the issue of Ukrainian political prisoners [in Russia]. He has won already."

PRESSROOM: RFE/RL Journalists Explain Why Independent Media Matters

PRESSROOM: Bosnian Journalist Working To ‘Break The Chain Of Trauma’

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