RUSSIALINK: “Biggest Names Among Russia’s Election Winners: A first female mayor, a TV host and Chechnya’s strongman” – Moscow Times

Russia Regions Map

Russia held controversial parliamentary elections last weekend that were marred by claims of mass fraud […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Online Vote Recount Shows No Sign of Election Fraud, Russian Officials Find”

File Image of Laptop Computer, Tables and Mobile Device, adapted from image at energy.gov

Nationwide statisticians have estimated that half of the official votes received by United Russia in the election could have been falsified [. ..]

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RUSSIALINK: “Moscow To Check Electronic Votes for State Duma in Recount” – Moscow Times

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

Independent data scientists and analysts said that half of all the votes attributed to United Russia in the official results were probably fake — a level of falsification previously unseen in Russian parliamentary elections [. ..]

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Sarah Lindemann-Komarova: “A Change Candidate Runs for the Russian State Duma”

Russian State Duma Building file photo

Despite nerves and head winds, Natalia Pinus’s biggest challenge is defeating her and all change supporters biggest opponent: low voter turnout from an apathetic, cynical, and distracted population […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia’s Opposition Candidates Are Fighting Among Themselves. Again.” – Moscow Times

Jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny’s Smart Voting system has added a new dimension to an old problem. (Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Felix Light, Jake Cordell – Sept. 13, 2021) If there’s one district Russia’s beleaguered opposition should be able to win in Sunday’s parliamentary elections, it’s Moscow’s 197th, Kuntsevsky. Named for the suburb where Josef Stalin had his dacha, […]

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RUSSIALINK: “In Small-City Russia, Elections Feel Irrelevant For Local Business Owners” – Moscow Times

Cash, Calculator, Pen

Saransk’s entrepreneurs are divided over whether the government is on their side, but discontent is unlikely to be reflected in the upcoming Duma vote. (Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Jake Cordell – SARANSK, MORDOVIA – Sept. 7, 2021 For barbershop owner Oleg Kechin, the first 18 months of the coronavirus pandemic were a breeze. After shutting for just four weeks […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Ahead of Duma Vote, Affluent Voronezh Remains Loyal to Putin and Stability” – Moscow Times

Russian State Duma Building file photo

On Sept. 19, Russians will vote in important elections to the country’s State Duma national parliament, the first major test of public opinion since a major crackdown […]

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Many Russians Prefer Village Life to Urban Because They Fear Change, Novikova Says

File Photo of Car on Road in Siberian Town

(Paul Goble – Window On Eurasia – Staunton, Aug. 31, 2021) Because so many Russians have left villages to move to the cities, it is often overlooked that many Russians choose to remain in villages and many who have moved into urban areas nonetheless view village life as preferrable in a variety of ways to the one they find themselves […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Putin Alarmed Over ‘Unprecedented’ Natural Disasters in Russia” – Moscow Times

Forest Fire file photo

Putin … said the scale of natural disasters that have hit Russia this year is “absolutely unprecedented” as local officials ask for Moscow’s help to tackle fires and floods […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s Ruling Party Wants a Big Win in Upcoming Elections; United Russia has seriously limited the opposition but is losing popularity itself” – Foreign Policy

Russia Regions Map

“… United Russia … is defending their super majority … but faces increasing challenges due to its own unpopularity and mounting grievances. … [with] a large majority .. key … to ensuring its own cohesion and shoring up legitimacy of the Putin government. …  [An] effort to secure the vote results from the government’s need for credibility in … a […]

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RUSSIALINK: “UN’s Bombshell Climate Change Report Forecasts Fire and Floods for Russia” – Moscow Times

File Photo of Polar Bear on Snow with Bare Ground in the Background, adapted from image at nasa.gov with photo credit to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Eric Regehr

Russia can expect to see intensifying wildfires, floods and other extreme weather events in the coming decades as the global climate crisis deepens a decade sooner than projected […]

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Despite Putin’s Urging, Russia’s Major Companies Aren’t Willing to Move Out of Moscow

Men Sitting Around Long Oval Boardroom Table, File Photo of FIFA Officials Meeting with Vladmir Putin

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, July 1, 2021) In the course of his Direct Line television show, Vladimir Putin said he was against moving the capital of the Russian Federation from Moscow but does favor having Russian companies which operate there have their headquarters in Siberian cities and pay taxes there rather than as now in Moscow. […]

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Moscow City’s Pothole Management Portal Benefits Residents and Regime, Sharafutdinova Says

Moscow Roads

(Paul Goble – Window On Eurasia – Staunton, June 25, 2021) Russia’s autocratic government is modern not just because it has reversed the democratization wave of three decades ago but because it is willing to make use of modern techniques in some spheres of life under its control for its direct benefit, according to Gulnaz Sharaftudinova. The Kremlin uses various […]

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‘Green Shift’ Occurring across Russian Political Spectrum, Shaburov Says

Russia Regions Map

Most parties … participating in the upcoming Duma and regional legislative assembly elections are now including environmentalists in their list of candidates […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Moscow Official Slams Slow Vaccination, Lax Mask-Wearing as Coronavirus Cases Double” – Moscow Times

Covid-19 Coronavirus file photo, adapted from image at cdc.gov

The spike was announced 24 hours after the Kremlin denied … report[s] that Russia is in the midst of a Covid-19 third wave […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Less Than 10% of People Vaccinated In Moscow, Center of Russia’s Vaccination Drive” – Moscow Times

File Photo of Blue-Gloved Hand Holding Syringe and Injecting Arm, adapted from image at nih.gov

Latest figures continue to show the slow pace of Russia’s vaccination rollout. (Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – April 15, 2021) Around 820,000 Muscovites have received both doses of a coronavirus vaccine, Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said yesterday, with the number who have received at least one dose of Russia’s three homemade jabs having surpassed 1 million in the capital. In a […]

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In Russia’s Provinces, Navalny’s Besieged Movement Says It’s ‘Again Gathering Force’

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

… [Navalny’s supporters] have been systematically targeted with raids, criminal charges, and police beatings …. [H]is team … announced … 10 new regional offices to add to its Russia-wide network … [to] investigate local corruption, organize protests, and contest elections […]

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Demand for Russia’s Sputnik-5 Vaccine Exceeds Supply Abroad and at Home

Russia Regions Map

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov says demand for the Russian vaccine far exceeds supply in foreign countries …. But the same situation holds in many parts of Russia where there is now not enough vaccine to meet domestic demand […]

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JRL RUSSIALINK: “Katherine Zubovich’s Magnificent ‘Moscow Monumental’; The story of Moscow’s skyscrapers and the lives they changed” – Moscow Times

Moscow State University file photo

“In its 874-year history, Moscow has grown from an obscure twelfth-century military outpost into a world-class capital city of over 20 million inhabitants. Along the way, the city has been reinvented over and over to suit the needs of its rulers. Ivan the Great made Moscow “The Third Rome” after the fall of Constantinople in 1453, raising stone cathedrals inside […]

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Navalny’s Team Looks To Expand Ahead Of September Parliamentary Polls In Russia

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

… Navalny’s team has announced plans to open offices in 10 cities where it believes the ruling United Russia party is most vulnerable […]

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From Russia with Questions

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

… [Our NASA Earth Observatory] team noticed a … message with a peculiar and beautiful image from Russia near 66 degrees north latitude. It turned into a scientific detective story and an unresolved case […]

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Protests in the Russian Regions: Take Two

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

Subject: Week Two in the Regions Date: Mon, 1 Feb 2021 From: Sarah Lindemann-Komarova <echosiberia@gmail.com> Protests in the Russian Regions: Take Two By Sarah Lindemann-Komarova Has lived in Siberia since 1992. Was a community development activist for 20 years. Currently, focuses on research and writing. With Photos: echosiberia.medium.com/protests-in-the-russian-regions-take-two-98aa9b451f09 What happened in the Russian regions week two of the “Navalny” protests? […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia struggles to distribute its vaccine to the regions; Putin calls for ‘mass’ inoculation as data suggest government is delivering fewer jabs than promised” – Financial Times/ Henry Foy

File Photo of Blue-Gloved Hand Holding Syringe and Injecting Arm, adapted from image at nih.gov

“… Russia’s government says 1.5m vaccines have been distributed … [with] hundreds of thousands more … ready … [but] doctors and officials … [indicate] a far bleaker reality of limited supplies and delayed shipments. … Moscow’s clinics have been busy vaccinating … [but] regions outside of the capital have struggled to secure adequate supplies, calling into question … [governmental] ability […]

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Russia’s Next Economic ‘Shock’ Likely To Come From Impoverished Regions, Experts Say

Russia Regions Map

Russia … failed to invest enough in its regions, whose health-care systems are now overwhelmed by the coronavirus pandemic, adding to citizens’ frustration with the government […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Blame Climate Change for Historically Warm Fall in Russia’s Biggest Cities, Experts Say” – Moscow Times

Cartoon Sun and Thermometer, adapted from cdc.gov

… Russia’s two largest cities experienced the warmest autumn temperatures of their recorded histories in 2020 …. And it’s only the beginning, experts say […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Along Russia’s ‘Road of Bones,’ Relics of Suffering and Despair” – New York Times/ Andrew Higgins

“The Kolyma Highway in the Russian Far East once delivered tens of thousands of prisoners to the work camps of Stalin’s gulag. The ruins of that cruel era are still visible today.” “… [P]risoners, hacking … through insect-infested summer swamps and winter ice fields, brought the road … [which] then brought yet more prisoners … a torrent of slave labor […]

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RUSSIALINK: “In a Poor Russian City, Coronavirus Hits Hard; The pandemic has combined with poverty to push Ivanovo’s healthcare system to its breaking point.” – Moscow Times

Covid-19 Coronavirus file photo, adapted from image at cdc.gov

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Felix Light – IVANOVO, Nov. 20, 2020) In this hardscrabble city in central Russia, the morgues are full and well-paid jobs are scarce. Though many of Russia’s outlying regions are struggling with the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, Ivanovo — a working-class city of 400,000 located 300 kilometers northeast of Moscow — is coping […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “25,000 medical students are sent out to help Russia’s COVID-struck hospitals” – Barents Observer/ Atle Staalesen

Covid-19 Coronavirus file photo, adapted from image at cdc.gov

“The virus is putting the healthcare system on its knees. A massive number of students are now sent out to aid.” “… According to the federal healthcare chief, several regions are now running out of available hospital bed[s]. … About 270,000 additional hospital beds are now being prepared for new patients. But medical staff is increasingly … [facing a] shortage. […]

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By Hook Or By Crook: For The Opposition In St. Petersburg, Winning An Election Is Only The Beginning Of The Battle

File Photo of Statue of Peter the Great on Horse Atop Rock in St. Petersburg, Russia, adapted from image at cia.gov

… St. Petersburg conducted controversial gubernatorial and local legislative elections. Observers … reported unjustified delays in the vote count, voter intimidation, suspicious recounts, and other alleged violations. … Nonetheless … [o]pposition and independent deputies nearly doubled their representation […]

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RUSSIALINK: “‘We’re in Hell’: Russia’s Second Wave of Covid-19 Is Catching the Regions Off Guard” – Moscow Times

Medical Symbol with Pole, Serpents, Wings, adapted from image at lanl.gov

Medics in hospitals across Russia voiced frustration that authorities failed to use the summer respite to prepare for a second coronavirus wave. (Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Pjotr Sauer – Oct. 27, 2020) In a video widely shared across Russian social media last week, dozens of bodies wrapped in black plastic bags line the walls of a decrepit basement in […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Khabarovsk [Protests]” – BMB Russia

Far Eastern Russia and Environs, with Khabarovsk Pinpointed, adapted from image at cdc.gov

“… [Khabarovsk] protests … against the arrest of former local governor Sergei Furgal have … been ongoing for … 100 consecutive days … remarkable … [for] Putin era protests. … [On] October 10 … for the first time[] [there was] … a crackdown by riot troops and the arrest of about 30 …. [T]he numbers … have significantly dwindled … […]

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Muscovites More Attached to Their City than They were a Decade Ago, Polkanov Says

Moscow Roads

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, Oct. 21, 2020) This month marks the tenth anniversary of Sergey Sobyanin’s time as mayor of the Russian capital; and over the past ten years, both his actions and broader changes have made Muscovites feel a greater attachment to and even love for their city than they had felt earlier. This change […]

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‘Crisis Of Trust’: Russia’s Pandemic Fatigue Combines With Wariness Of Expert Advice

Covid-19 Coronavirus file photo, adapted from image at cdc.gov

Across the world, a growing ‘pandemic fatigue’ appears to be exacerbating the spread of the coronavirus …. Many governments have brought back restrictions they had lifted …. But while many European countries have imposed stringent measures again … Russia has in many ways carried on as normal […]

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Russians’ Unwillingness to Take Responsibility Found Wherever They Feel They can’t Affect Outcomes, Levada Center Sociologist Says

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, Oct. 13, 2020) As was the case at the beginning of the pandemic, so now too again Russian officials are complaining that the unwillingness of Russians to assume personal responsibility may force the government to take repressive actions that will harm everyone, Karina Pipiya says. But the Levada Center sociologist says that […]

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Coronavirus Numbers Rising Rapidly in Moscow, Major Russian Cities

Covid-19 Coronavirus file photo, adapted from image at cdc.gov

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, September 27, 2020) Coronavirus infections are rising rapidly in Moscow and other major Russian cities, with the number of cases in the capital jumping from 1050 three days ago to more than 2,000 today, the result, experts say, of the start of flu season and declining caution among Russians (svpressa.ru/economy/article/276981/, kp.ru/daily/217187.5/4293934/, regnum.ru/news/3074643.html, […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “‘Nobody wants to kill business’; Moscow is experiencing a spike in coronavirus cases, but there’s no lockdown in sight” – Meduza

Coronavirus File Photo adapted from image at cdc.gov

“Moscow is experiencing a sharp increase in new coronavirus cases[,] [a]s of Friday, September 25, …record[ing] 1,560 new cases in the last day – 510 more than the day before … nearly twice as many as last week. … the highest daily increase … since June 12. … Also on September 25, Russia recorded more than 7,000 new coronavirus cases […]

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Because of Pandemic, Moscow This Year Spent More on Economy than on Defense

Covid-19 Coronavirus file photo, adapted from image at cdc.gov

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, September 19, 2020) The pandemic has introduced major changes in Russian government policy but perhaps not one greater than this: for the first time in a very long time, the Russian government has spent more on promoting the economy than on maintaining and developing its military (sobkorr.org/news/5F6610F248362.html). The number of new cases […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Navalny’s smart voting scores rare successes in Russia’s regional elections” – bne Intellinews/ Ben Aris

Arm and Torso of Person in Brown Sweater Placing Paper Ballot into Ballot Box

“… ‘Smart voting’ tactics promoted by anti-corruption blogger and opposition activist Alexei Navalny[,] [promoting candidates most likely to oust United Russia, regardless of political allegiances,] delivered a few successes in … regional elections …. Opposition leader Sergei Boyko won … in … Novosibirsk, despite an energetic campaign by … ruling United Russia Party. … [L]ocal elections have been a test […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s Crumbling Power Vertical: Decreasing Disposable Income Drives Discontentment” – PONARS Eurasia

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

“Accumulating evidence points at prospects of growing destabilization at the regional level in Russia. In 2019, five consecutive years of economic stagnation ignited a wave of protests across the country. In 2020, as Russia’s economic situation worsened dramatically due to a pandemic-driven halt to economic activity combined with a fall in oil prices, support for Kremlin appointees might start crumbling […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin Faces Test of Voters With Poisoned Critic in Hospital” – Bloomberg/ Henry Meyer

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Podium with United Russia Logo, Gesturing

“With his most prominent critic hit by a near-fatal poisoning that opponents and the West blame on the Kremlin … Putin faces a key test of support in regional elections ahead of a national vote next year. About a third of the electorate is eligible to vote … over three days … to choose representatives at different levels … in […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s 2020 elections hotspots; A semblance of real political competition makes the upcoming vote worth following in several regions” – Meduza

Arm and Torso of Person in Brown Sweater Placing Paper Ballot into Ballot Box

“… [On Sunday,] residents of 18 regions … elect governors, another 11 regions … vote for local parliamentary deputies, and 22 regional capitals … hold city council elections. In several regions … results may not be in favor of … [ruling powers] in spite of … three-day voting rules, which can create increased opportunities for manipulating … election results. … […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia’s Regional Elections, Explained” – Moscow Times

Russia Regions Map

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Sept. 11, 2020) Russians are heading to the polls through Sunday to elect new regional and city leadership. In a year that has seen a global pandemic, weeks of anti-Kremlin protests in the Far East and historically low approval ratings for President Vladimir Putin, the vote is set to be a key test for the […]

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Khabarovsk Protesters Add Concern for Navalny to Demands [For] Furgal’s Return and Putin’s Ouster

Far Eastern Russia and Environs, with Khabarovsk Pinpointed, adapted from image at cdc.gov

… [T]housands … came into the streets of Khabarovsk … to reiterate … demands … their elected governor be restored … and Putin [removed] … [and, now, additionally] to express … solidarity with opposition leader Aleksey Navalny who remains in a coma […]

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‘No More than 10’ Russian Regions Now Providing Accurate Coronavirus Data, Mathematical Analysis Shows

Covid-19 Coronavirus file photo, adapted from image at cdc.gov

Over the last month, regions including Moscow are reporting figures that reflect what their leaders have promised but that are improbable when subjected to mathematical analysis […]

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Russians Don’t Know Geography of Their Own Country or That of Others, VTsIOM Finds

Russia Regions Map

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, August 19, 2020) In Soviet times, schools devoted a great deal of attention to geography and especially to how much larger the USSR was than any other country and where its natural wealth was located. But since 1991, such instruction appears to have taken a back seat to other subjects at least […]

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Pandemic-Driven Pessimism Greater in Moscow and Major Cities than Elsewhere, Poll Finds

Coronavirus File Photo adapted from image at cdc.gov

A survey of 5,000 Russians … finds the level of pessimism about the future is greater in Moscow and other major cities than elsewhere … [T]hese cities were hit harder by the pandemic than anywhere else […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Six Months into the Coronavirus Outbreak, Russia’s Statistics Still Provide More Questions than Answers” – Moscow Times

Russia Regions Map

Analysis of excess fatalities show regions may be underreporting deaths from Covid-19 […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Chat Group Becomes Target of Moscow’s Wrath as Security Crackdown Widens” – New York Times/ Andrew Higgins

Stylized Artist's Depiction of Shadowy Figures in Dark Coats and Dark Hats, One Carrying a Briefcase

“The group started out as an online discussion of hobbies, schoolwork and sometimes politics. But then it was infiltrated by an informer for Russia’s all-powerful security services.” “… [T]he chat group … was joined by a new member who promoted unusually strident views … and pushed to turn the online chatter into a political movement …. [He] gave his name […]

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Separatism Doesn’t Threaten Russia But Will If Kremlin Fails to Listen to Regions, Yarulin Says

Russia Regions Map

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, July 30, 2020) The most important lesson of the Khabarovsk protests is that separatism doesn’t threaten Russia now but could if the central government continues to try to make all the decisions, consolidate all the power and wealth, and ignore the aspirations of Russians in the regions, Ildus Yarulin says. The director […]

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