As Soldiers Disengage, ‘Fragile Hope’ For Peace Appears In One Front-Line Ukrainian Town

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Christopher Miller – STANYTSYA LUHANSKA, Ukraine, July 18, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/as-soldiers-disengage-fragile-hope-for-peace-appears-in-one-front-line-ukrainian-town/30062713.html) Beyond the series of checkpoints manned by armed guards with bomb-sniffing dogs in this battle-scarred town lies a mile-long stretch of no man’s land that’s one of most dangerous places in Ukraine. […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Zelensky’s idea of multilateral Donbas summit has right to exist – Lavrov” – Interfax

Sergei Lavrov file photo

HIGH TATRAS (Slovakia). July 9 (Interfax) – Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s idea of a summit involving Russia, Ukraine, Germany, France, the United Kingdom and the United States has a right to exist, but emphasis should be put on direct dialogue between the conflicting sides, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told the press on Tuesday. “This format, both the Normandy and […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Kremlin has nothing to add to Putin’s remark on Zelensky’s call for freeing Ukrainian sailors – Peskov” – Interfax

Dmitry Peskov file photo adapted from image at kremlin.ru/wikimedia commons

MOSCOW. July 1 (Interfax) – Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has invited journalists to reread Russian President Vladimir Putin’s comments on Ukrainian sailors detained following the Kerch Strait incident. “As regards replying to the emotional appeal of the Ukrainian president, I think I have nothing to add to what Putin has already said during the final press conference in Osaka. As […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s Resilient Legal Powerhouse: The Procuracy Enters the 21st Century” – Kennan Institute/ William E. Pomeranz

Satellite Dishes

“On March 18, 2019, President Vladimir Putin signed into law two new restrictions on freedom of speech. One law levied administrative fines on so-called ‘fake news’ while the other imposed penalties for information deemed insulting to human dignity, public morality, or otherwise expressing disrespect to state symbols and institutions.[1] The above laws lacked precise standards, thereby requiring interpretation. What was […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Michael Calvey Case Revisited: A Corporate Hit, a Bargaining Chip” – Kennan Institute/ Pavel Koshkin

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Kennan Institute – wilsoncenter.org/program/kennan-institute – Pavel Koshkin – wilsoncenter.org/blog-post/michael-calvey-case-revisited-corporate-hit-bargaining-chip) Pavel Koshkin is a research fellow of the Institute of U.S. and Canadian Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences (ISKRAN) and a contributor to Forbes Russia The American investor Michael Calvey, who was detained in February in Moscow on fraud charges, is back in the news again. Calvey, who has […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia’s Top Auditor Kudrin Blasts Corruption in Legal System” – Moscow Times

Alexei Kudrin file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – June 6, 2019) Russian economic growth is hampered by deep-seated corruption in the country’s legal system, the head of Russia’s auditing agency said Thursday. Audit Chamber head Alexei Kudrin told a St. Petersburg International Economic Forum panel that corruption in the Russian judiciary system goes back centuries, pointing to one of the classic Russian poet […]

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VIDEO: Ukraine’s President Promises NATO Referendum As Part Of Path To West

Maidan Square in Kiev, Ukraine

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – BRUSSELS, June 5, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/ukraine-president-promises-nato-referendum-as-part-of-path-to-west/29982943.html) Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has promised to hold a referendum on NATO membership — a move strongly opposed by Moscow — as the country embarks on a path of European and Euro-Atlantic integration. Speaking in an interview […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Zelensky calls for tightening anti-Russian sanctions at meeting with U.S. delegation” – Interfax

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

KYIV. May 20 (Interfax) – Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has received representatives of the Administration and Congress of the United States who came to Kyiv to attend an official presidential inauguration ceremony. Zelensky thanked the U.S. for its leading role in regaining Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and for the assistance in promoting domestic reforms, according to the official presidential […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Zelensky prioritizes ceasefire in Donbas, says ready to make unpopular decisions” – Interfax

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

KYIV. May 20 (Interfax) – Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has described a ceasefire in Donbas as his primary objective and said he is ready to make unpopular decisions, including ones that might lead to his resignation as the Ukrainian president, for the ceasefire’s sake. “Our primary objective is to enact a ceasefire in Donbas,” Zelensky said in his address to […]

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Expectations for Kyiv-Moscow Relations After Ukraine’s Presidential Election

Mariyinsky Palace file photo, adapted from image at cia.gov

(PONARS Eurasia – Emmanuel Dreyfus – May 13, 2019 – ponarseurasia.org/memo/expectations-kyiv-moscow-relations-after-ukraines-presidential-election) Emmanuel Dreyfus is a Visiting Fellow at the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies at the George Washington University. (PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo) At first glance, Ukraine’s recent presidential election further confirmed the dramatic decrease of Russian influence in Ukraine. Not a single candidate based his or her […]

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Ukraine and NATO: Disconnect Between State Policy and Public Opinion Is Less Dangerous Than Russia

NATO Meeting File Photo

“… Zelenskiy has repeatedly reaffirmed his predecessor’s policy of bringing Ukraine ever closer to Europe and has said that, as a citizen, he supports … accession to NATO. However, unlike … Poroshenko, Zelenskiy insists the question of joining the Western military alliance should be decided by a popular referendum. …”

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “As Russia Celebrates Hitler’s Defeat, Stalin’s Ghost Is Haunting Putin” – The Daily Beast/ Anna Nemtsova

File Photo of Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler Riding in Convertible

“Russians have been encouraged to see Hitler as a tyrant, but Stalin as their defender. Now some wish Stalin were still around.” “… most of Europe dates the beginning of the war to 1939, partly because of a nonaggression pact that … Stalin made with Hitler that opened the way for him to invade Poland. That was followed by the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH VIDEO: “New Russian Documentary Brings the Horrors of the Gulag to the YouTube Generation; Yuri Dud’s documentary has garnered millions of views in days. From Global Voices.” – Transitions Online/ Alexey Kovalev

File Photo of Kolyma Mountains Satellite Image, adapted from image at noaa.gov

“… former sports reporter … [Yuri Dud] runs his own YouTube interview show …. generat[ing] millions of views … a serious competitor even to state-owned TV. … [T]he subject of Dud’s latest show shocked his … 5 million [subscribers] and the general public: a two-hour documentary about the Kolyma region, in Russia’s far northeast … almost synonymous with Stalin-era repressions. […]

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OPPORTUNITY: Kimberly O’Haver: “Human Rights Initiative (HRI) Seeking Consultant”

File Photo of Empty Chair and Desk with Computer, adapted from image at osha.gov

Subject: Human Rights Initiative (HRI) Seeking Consultant Date: Thu, 2 May 2019 From: Kimberly O’Haver <kimberly.ohaver@opensocietyfoundations.org> The Human Rights Initiative (HRI), a program of the Open Society Foundations, is seeking a consultant to evaluate its Youth Action Fund initiative, which has been implemented by HRI since 2014. The assessment is to be finalized by August 31st and its primary purpose […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH VIDEO: “Russia’s Democracy: What Happens After Putin?” – CFR

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

“Mikhail Khodorkovsky provides his perspective on the domestic political climate in Russia, prospects for democratic change, and the future of U.S.-Russia relations.” (Council on Foreign Relations – cfr.org – April 29, 2019 – cfr.org/event/russias-democracy-what-happens-after-putin) [Click here for transcript and original post: cfr.org/event/russias-democracy-what-happens-after-putin] “Speaker: Mikhail Khodorkovsky, Founder, Open Russia Presider: Thomas Graham, Distinguished Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations; Former Special Assistant to […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Zelensky describes return of all Ukrainian POWs home as No. 1 task” – Interfax

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

KYIV. April 22 (Interfax) – Volodymyr Zelensky, who is winning the Ukrainian runoff presidential election according to exit polls, has described the liberation of Ukrainian prisoners-of-war and captives as No. 1 task of his team. “In my opinion, our task No. 1 is to bring back all captives, all prisoners of war, and our sailors. I have been talking with […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Frolov: Zelenskiy’s presidency won’t be a picnic for Moscow” – Meduza

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

“… columnist and former diplomat Vladimir Frolov argues [in a separate op-ed] that … Zelenskiy’s likely presidency in Ukraine is a mixed bag for Moscow. … [that] the Kremlin initially hoped only that … Poroshenko’s re-election would leave him battered and pave the way to future success for a Russia-friendly parliamentary opposition …. [republic.ru/posts/93574] Zelenskiy comes without Poroshenko’s toxicity in […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Comic Who Vowed to Unite Ukraine Wins Votes in East and West” – AP

Maidan Square in Kiev, Ukraine

“… With nearly all ballots counted, Zelenskiy had 73% … compared … Poroshenko’s 24%. [OSCE m]onitors … said the election … respect[ed] … ‘fundamental freedoms’ and set the stage for a ‘democratic and orderly transfer of power.’ The first-time candidate, who stars in a TV sitcom about a high school teacher who becomes president almost by accident, appeared to have […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Ukraine’s Election Result Pleases Both Russia’s Opposition and the Kremlin; The two sides have for once found something they agree on – for different reasons” – Moscow Times

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

(Moscow Times – Evan Gershkovich – April 11, 2019 – themoscowtimes.com/2019/04/22/ukraines-election-result-pleases-both-russias-opposition-and-the-kremlin-a65325) Volodymyr Zelenskiy, a comedian and actor with no political experience, swept to victory on Sunday in the second round of Ukraine’s presidential election, in a race that has fascinated the country’s looming neighbor to the north. The victory triggered speculation in Russia on Sunday that relations between the neighboring […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Voter turnout in 2nd round of election in Ukraine reaches 61.37% – CEC” – Interfax

Maidan Square in Kiev, Ukraine

KYIV. April 22 (Interfax) – The voter turnout in the second round of the Ukrainian presidential election on Sunday reached 61.37%, which is less than in the first round of March 31, Ukrainian Central Elections Commission (CEC) Chairperson Tetiana Slipachuk said. “It turned out that the turnout in the second round was lower than on March 31. According to tentative […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “A Shadow over Ukraine’s Presidential Election” – International Crisis Group/ Katharine Quinn-Judge

File photo of statue of St. Volodymyr in Kyiv overlooking the Dnieper River, adapted from image at cia.gov

“With Ukraine’s establishment forecasting doom after the presidential runoff, the far right’s influence on politics is impossible to ignore. Its resurgence is both a symptom and a cause of the country’s ills: there is less daylight between it and the political mainstream than either admits.” “… Zelensky’s campaign has hinged on shying away from policy specifics …. appealing to voters […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia hopes Ukraine’s administration is ‘negotiable’ after election” – Interfax

Sergei Lavrov file photo

(Interfax – April 21, 2019) Moscow is most hopeful that the winner in Ukraine’s presidential election will possess an ability to negotiate and a willingness to implement ceasefire commitments in Donbass, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said. Speaking in the lead-up to the second round of voting, Lavrov suggested Russia gave little weight to campaign statements made by either […]

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Record Numbers of Russians Have Positive View of Stalin, Levada Center Finds

File Photo of Soviet Gulag at Belbaltlag, adapted from image at nps.gov

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, April 16, 2019) On the centenary of the establishment of the GULAG that he did so much to expand (kasparov.ru/material.php?id=5CB56680ECD4C), the Levada Center polling agency released the results of a survey showing 70 percent of Russians have a positive attitude toward the Soviet dictator, the highest share ever (rbc.ru/politics/16/04/2019/5cb0bb979a794780a4592d0c). Not surprisingly, this […]

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Could a Zelensky Presidency Prove a Breakthrough for Conflict Resolution in the Donbas?

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(Kennan Institute – wilsoncenter.org/program/kennan-institute – Serhiy Kudelia – April 11, 2019 – wilsoncenter.org/blog-post/could-zelensky-presidency-prove-breakthrough-for-conflict-resolution-the-donbas) Serhiy Kudelia is an associate professor of political science at Baylor University, where he teaches courses on ethnopolitical conflicts, terrorism, political regimes, and post-Soviet politics. Five years since the start of the armed conflict in Donbas, its resolution remains the top concern of most Ukrainian voters, with […]

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Interview: U.S. Ambassador Reaffirms Support For Ukraine’s Integrity, Calls On Russia To Talk

File Photo of John Huntsman, Men in Military Uniforms and Others, adapted from image at army.mil

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – April 13, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/russia-u-s-ambassador-huntsman-reaffirms-support-ukraine-s-integrity-talks/29878614.html) The U.S. ambassador to Russia said Washington was committed to defending Ukraine’s territorial integrity, saying the issue of Moscow’s annexation of Crimea and the conflict in eastern Ukraine was “a core part of our estrangement with Russia.” In […]

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Russian Director Serebrennikov Freed From House Arrest

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – April 8, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/russian-director-serebrennikov-freed-from-house-arrest/29867678.html) A Moscow court has ordered the release of theater director Kirill Serebrennikov and two associates from house arrest. The three are on trial in an embezzlement case they claim is politically motivated. In an April 8 ruling, the […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Most Russians Prefer Council of Europe Membership – Polls” – Moscow Times

File Photo of Council of Europe Headquarters Building with Flags in Front

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – April 8, 2019) A majority of Russians support their country’s membership in the Council of Europe (CoE) human rights watchdog, according to two surveys published Monday. Russia was suspended from the CoE parliamentary assembly in 2014 in protest of Moscow’s behavior toward Ukraine and the annexation of Crimea. In response, Russia halted annual payments to […]

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Yermolai Solzhenitsyn: “Re: Some information on SolzhenitsynCenter.org”

Alexander Solzhenitsyn file photo

Subject: Some information on solzhenitsyncenter.org Date: Tue, 26 Mar 2019 From: Yermolai Solzhenitsyn <yermolai_solzhenitsyn@mckinsey.com> To: davidjohnson@starpower.net Dear David, We saw recently a piece on JRL Russia Insider, russia-insider.com, March 18, 2019 Great Russian Documentary on Life of Alexander Solzhenitsyn (Video) [https://russia-insider.com/en/great-russian-documentary-life-alexander-solzhenitsyn-video/ri26536], where the authors were wondering whether there were English language copies of all the three films in question. We […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Duma’s Slutsky backs establishment of think tank to counter color revolutions” – Interfax

Russian State Duma Building file photo

MOSCOW. March 22 (Interfax) – The Social Engineering Agency has been set up in Russia as a new analytical center to develop measures to oppose color revolutions, State Duma Foreign Affairs Committee head Leonid Slutsky said. “In my view, this is a grand idea. It’s the first time that steps to prevent the implementation of scenarios inspired from the outside […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Ombudsman Titov Appeals to Russian Authorities Over Detained Businessmen” – Moscow Times

File Photo of Outdoor Electronic Sign with Russian Exchange Data

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – March 22, 2019) Business ombudsman Boris Titov has appealed to federal prosecutors over a group of Russian businessmen currently being held in pre-trial detention. Russia’s business community has expressed growing concern over the pre-trial detention of U.S. investor Michael Calvey, who has been held on embezzlement charges since Feb. 14. President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin at] Meeting with Government members [Re: Crimea]” – KremlinRu

Kremlin and River

(Kremlin.ru – March 20, 2019 – en.kremlin.ru/events/president/transcripts/60116) The President held a regular meeting with Government members. President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, colleagues. I have something to tell you before we begin. We are aware of the political events that are unfolding in a neighboring country, which is our closest ally. They are about changes in the political leadership. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “U.S. investor jailed by Russia tells Washington to keep distance: prison monitor” – Reuters

File Photo of U.S. Embassy Moscow, with Russian Foreign Ministry Building in Distance

“The detention … of Michael Calvey, founder of the Baring Vostok private equity group, has strained U.S.-Russia ties and stoked talk of a possible U.S. boycott of an annual economic forum in June attended by … Putin. Calvey was detained along with three other executives from Baring Vostok after investigators accused them of stealing 2.5 billion roubles ($38.09 million), a […]

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Russia’s Missed Opportunity: Five Years Since Crimea’s Annexation

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(Kennan Institute – wilsoncenter.org/program/kennan-institute – Maxim Trudolyubov – March 18, 2019 – wilsoncenter.org/blog-post/russias-missed-opportunity-five-years-crimeas-annexation) Maxim Trudolyubov is a Senior Fellow at the Kennan Institute and the Editor-at-Large of Vedomosti, an independent Russian daily. The logic of Russian politicians who made an unexpected decision five years ago to annex the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea was not economic or political. It was a […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Prosecutors must ensure proper prison conditions – Putin” – Interfax

Vladimir Putin file photo with VOA logo; screen shot from video still

MOSCOW. March 19 (Interfax) – Prosecutors must step up monitoring of conditions in jails and prisons, President Vladimir Putin said. “The penal system must remain under the constant scrutiny of prosecutors,” Putin said at a meeting with senior prosecution officials on Tuesday. “Together with colleagues from the [Federal Penitentiary Service] FSIN, regional human rights commissioners and representatives from human rights […]

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RUSSIALINK: “‘Point of No Return’: Russia’s Libertarians Lead Protest Against ‘Sovereign Internet’; A draft law aimed at creating an internet that can be cut off from the rest of the world’s has raised fears that Russia could turn into the next North Korea.” – Moscow Times

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Moscow Times – Evan Gershkovich – March 10, 2019 – themoscowtimes.com/2019/03/10/point-of-no-return-russias-libertarians-lead-protest-against-sovereign-internet-a64758) It was Saturday afternoon and Mikhail Svetov was buzzing with nervous energy. Just 24 hours later, the member of Russia’s Libertarian Party would be leading a protest against a draft bill aimed at creating a so-called sovereign internet. “I see signals that something unusual is happening. Something similar to […]

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RUSSIALINK: “LPR urges direct dialogue with Kyiv for Donbas settlement” – Interfax

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

LUHANSK. March 9 (Interfax) – The self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic (LPR) is urging Ukraine to settle the Donbas conflict through direct dialogue, the LPR representative in the Trilateral Contact Group’s humanitarian subgroup, Olga Kobtseva, said. “It is necessary to establish direct dialogue in addition to the talks between the conflicting parties within Ukraine: Ukraine’s representatives and those from the LPR […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Poroshenko’s team hit by defence industry corruption scandal, Tymoshenko starts impeachment process” – bne Intellinews

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

“… Poroshenko rivals in the upcoming presidential election are accusing him of ‘profiting from blood’ after an investigation revealed that the son of the president’s close business partner has been selling arms to separatist rebels in the breakaway eastern region of Donbas … [according to] a report broadcast on Ukrainian TV …. Former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, who leads the […]

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From ‘Not Us’ To ‘Why Hide It?’: How Russia Denied Its Crimea Invasion, Then Admitted It

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Carl Schreck – February 26, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/from-not-us-to-why-hide-it-how-russia-denied-its-crimea-invasion-then-admitted-it/29791806.html) In the darkness of the morning on February 27, 2014, heavily armed men wearing green uniforms with no identifying insignia stormed the regional parliament in Simferopol, the capital of Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula, and raised the […]

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Russia Risk: It’s a Feature, Not a Bug

File Photo of Outdoor Electronic Sign with Russian Exchange Data

(Kennan Institute – wilsoncenter.org/program/kennan-institute – Maxim Trudolyubov – February 19, 2019 – wilsoncenter.org/blog-post/russia-risk-its-feature-not-bug) Maxim Trudolyubov is a Senior Fellow at the Kennan Institute and the Editor-at-Large of Vedomosti, an independent Russian daily. In a story both typical of Russian business practices and so unusual as to bring a response from Putin’s key business allies, the American investor Michael Calvey and […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Calvey’s arrest sends chill through Russia’s foreign investors; U.S. founder of Moscow-based Baring Vostok was seen as savvy operator” – Financial Times/ Max Seddon, Anne-Sylvaine Chassany

File Photo of Outdoor Electronic Sign with Russian Exchange Data

“Kremlin officials were touting Russia’s investment opportunities at a [Sochi resort] conference … when news trickled out that one of the country’s last remaining American investors had been thrown behind bars. Michael Calvey … founder of Moscow-based private equity fund manager Baring Vostok, remained one of the last Russia bulls at a time when most of his contemporaries had left […]

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Russia’s Kudrin Calls Detention Of American Investor ‘Emergency’ For Economy

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – February 19, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/russian-official-calls-us-investor-s-detention-emergency-for-economy-/29778434.html) A longtime former finance minister who is close to President Vladimir Putin has called the arrest of a prominent American investment-fund manager an “emergency” for the Russian economy, suggesting it could further damage the country’s image and harm the […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia and Ukraine: A Lethal Codependency” – Carnegie Moscow/ Gleb Pavolvsky

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

“The Russia-Ukraine conflict has moved from cozy mutual exploitation to lethal hostility. Neither side is prepared to admit its deep dependence on the other. Five years after the Ukraine crisis began, and as the presidential campaign gets under way in that country, it is conventional to see Russia’s intervention there and Ukraine’s response as a modern example of interstate power […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Some 70% of Ukrainians approve possible compromises with Russia, DPR, LPR for sake of peace – poll” – Interfax

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

KYIV. Feb 13 (Interfax) – Seventy-two percent of Ukrainians believe that there is a war between Ukraine and Russia, while 15% disagree, according to a nationwide opinion poll conducted by the Ilko Kucheriv Democratic Initiatives Foundation and the Razumkov Center and a regional survey conducted in the districts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions controlled by Kyiv. Thirty-nine percent of […]

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Desperately Seeking A Postwar President In Ukraine

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Christopher Miller – KYIV, Jan. 25, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/desperately-seeking-a-postwar-president-in-ukraine/29730680.html) Ukrainians say the biggest problem facing their country ahead of a crucial presidential election in March is the same one that ushered in the current head of state in the first place: war. It’s been […]

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Russia’s isolationist ‘sovereign internet’ bill worries experts and users alike

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

(GlobalVoices – Christopher Moldes – January 26, 2018 – globalvoices.org/2019/01/26/russias-isolationist-sovereign-internet-bill-worries-experts-and-users-alike/) After a bill was introduced in the Russian State Duma (the lower chamber of Russia’s bicameral legislative branch), the Russian government soon plans to discuss the feasibility of creating a so-called “sovereign internet” system. This system would purportedly safeguard networks within Russia from foreign information attacks, and calls for significant […]

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Growth of Public History in Russia ‘Democratizing Memory,’ New Study Says

File Photo of Soviet Gulag at Belbaltlag, adapted from image at nps.gov

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, January 17, 2019) [Text with links windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2019/01/growth-of-public-history-in-russia.html] Public history, the trend within the history discipline in many places around the world that seeks to rely on the digitalization of personal memoirs, diaries, and photographs of ordinary people to present the past from below, has come to Russia and is “democratizing memory” in […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian lawmakers amend criminal code to reduce pressure on social media activity” – bne Intellinews

Montage of Instagram, Twitter and Facebook Logos, adapted from image at nps.gov

“… the State Duma … adopted amendments to … partially decriminalise … [criminal] code[] Article 282 … widely used for … offences involving social media content. As reported by … Meduza, first-time offenders will now face … misdemeanour charges, risking a RUB20,000 fine ($287 at the current exchange rate) or a 15-day jail sentence, instead of felony charges and a […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russian Justice Ministry begins inspection of Memorial research center as foreign-agent NGO – Memorial” – Interfax

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

MOSCOW. Jan 14 (Interfax) – The Russian Justice Ministry is beginning to inspect the Memorial Scientific Research and Education Center on January 14 to see if it is fulfilling the functions of a foreign agent NGO, International Memorial’s press service said. The organization has provided all the documents the ministry requested, the press service said. “The Memorial Scientific Research and […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “‘The art of rejection’ A new report reveals the hidden mechanisms authorities use to restrict protests in Russia” – Meduza

Moscow Protest File Photo

“Article 31 of the Russian Constitution states that citizens of the Russian Federation ‘shall have the right to assemble peacefully.’ However, when protests are not approved by local authorities, those who join them can face arrest, professional consequences, and even criminal charges. The anti-corruption protests that swept Russia on March 26 and June 12, 2017, as well as the Voters’ […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The Curious Story of an American Arrested by the Kremlin” – Stratfor/ Scott Stewart

Kremlin and River

“Highlights Russia has arrested an American corporate security director, Paul Whelan, but he doesn’t have the profile befitting a non-official cover intelligence officer, even though there are elements in his background that would bring him to the attention of the Kremlin’s security services. Russian authorities arrested Whelan not long after Russian citizen Maria Butina pleaded guilty in a U.S. court […]

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