JRL NEWSWATCH: “Citing Virus, Some Russian Election Officials Shun Vote to Extend Putin Rule” – Reuters

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

“… [C]iting … coronavirus, … around 350 [Russian polling station officials] across the country say taking part [in a nationwide vote on reforms that could extend … Putin’s rule until 2036] is too dangerous … [with] authorities … reporting thousands of new infections each day despite a drop … in … Moscow. The officials have started a petition … to […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin heightens the strategic role of the Northern Fleet” – Barents Observer/ Thomas Nilsen

Russian Naval Vessel file photo

“In an early June decree, President Vladimir Putin de facto equals the Northern Fleet with a military district” “… [Starting in] 2021, the Northern Fleet will have the same status as Russia’s four other military districts … the Western, Southern, Central and Eastern. … [T]he Republic of Komi, Arkhangelsk Oblast, Murmansk Oblast and the Nenets Autonomous Okrug will be part […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Hit Hard by Coronavirus, Russia Joins Global Race for a Vaccine” – Wall Street Journal/ Georgi Kantchev, Drew Hinshaw

Coronavirus File Photo adapted from image at cdc.gov

“Being first would provide Putin more economic and political leverage as ‘vaccine nationalism’ spreads” “… The global pursuit of a vaccine against … Covid-19 has been likened to the 1960s space race …. Russia has employed the armed forces, shortened trial approval times and sped up clinical evaluations … [in a context where a vaccine also could] provide economic and […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Pentagon announces $250 million in security assistance to Ukraine” – CNN/ Ryan Browne

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

“… ‘[DOD] announced … plans for $250 million in Fiscal Year 2020 Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) funds for additional training, equipment, and advisory efforts to strengthen Ukraine’s capacity to more effectively defend itself against Russian aggression,’ the Pentagon said in a statement …. the ‘funds — $125 million of which was conditional on Ukraine’s progress on defense reforms — […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian Negotiator Doubts China Will Join 3-Way Arms Accord Sought by Trump” – Wall Street Journal/ Michael R. Gordon

File Photo of Beijing Temple, adapted from image at lbl.gov

“Kremlin won’t press Beijing to join talks despite U.S. plea, says diplomat” “Moscow won’t pressure China to join … coming arms-control talks with U.S. and Russian negotiators, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said …. [T]he New START treaty … cutting] long-range U.S. and Russian nuclear arms[] [is] due to expire in February …. Trump … seek[s] a broader agreement […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin’s Foes Divided Over Russian Vote That Could Extend His Rule” – Reuters

Kremlin and River

“… Putin’s opponents agree a nationwide vote next month that could extend his rule is a sham, but are split over … [supporting] a ‘No’ vote or … a boycott. … [On] July 1 … Russians … vote to approve or reject constitutional reforms including … allow[ing] Putin to serve two more six-year terms … instead of stepping down in […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Moscow, Center of Russia’s Coronavirus Crisis, Emerges From Lockdown” – Wall Street Journal/ Ann M. Simmons

Coronavirus File Photo adapted from image at cdc.gov

“Infections remain high as city authorities begin reopening and Putin prepares for parade, referendum” “… Moscow has been at the center of Russia’s novel coronavirus pandemic, with 40% of the country’s nearly half million infections. … Russia is recording about 9,000 new cases a day. On Tuesday, Moscow reported just over 1,500 new cases … [down] from … nearly 2,000 […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s ‘miraculous’ coronavirus death statistics face scepticism” – The Times (UK)

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

“… [Its] mayor surprised [Moscow] … lifting the vast majority of coronavirus curbs …. even as the city registered more than 3,500 new cases and 110 deaths in the past 48 hours. … Since … suspected patient zero arrived in Moscow from Milan in February, the health ministry has recorded over 485,000 confirmed cases … third highest in the world […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Did Russia pass the coronavirus test? Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov responds” – CNN/ Matthew Chance, Zahra Ullah, Nathan Hodge

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

“Russia has been one of the countries hardest hit by … [Covid-19] coronavirus … behind only the United States and Brazil in … [T]he government’s response has received heavy criticism at home and abroad. Russian doctors have described critical shortages of equipment, which hospital administrators and local governments deny. Observers have questioned whether Russia is under-reporting mortality figures …. But […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s new nuclear policy could be a path to arms control treaties” – Defense News/ Sarah Bidgood

Russian Mobile ICBM Parade File Photo

… the U.S. and Russia have traditionally been able to work together to mitigate mutual threats even when their bilateral relationship is in crisis […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s consumer orientated business takes the brunt of the coronacrisis blow, basic sectors down 10% in April” – bne Intellinews

Cash, Calculator, Pen

“Russia’s basic sector output was down 9.9% year on year in April … [with] the effects of the coronacrisis …. Over the first four months … Russia’s basic sector output fell 0.9% y/y, versus 2.3% growth in 1Q20. … [Only] [a]griculture … show[ed] growth. All … other subsectors contracted in April. Retail, services, manufacturing and wholesale suffered the most …. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The massive Norilsk fuel spill could be linked to permafrost thaw, a growing threat to Arctic infrastructure” – Arctic Today / Melody Schreiber

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

“Infrastructure built on permafrost needs to be better monitored, experts and officials say.” “… [O]ne of the largest ever oil spills in the Russian Arctic may have been caused in part by permafrost thaw, according to the [polluting] company …. Experts … long warned that … [without] precautionary steps … such thaw could cause[] billions of dollars in damage to […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Pandemic Upends Putin’s Plans to Raise Russia’s Dwindling Birthrate” – Wall Street Journal/ Ann M. Simmons

File Photo of Russian Crowd, with Russian Flag Being Waved

“President Vladimir Putin has been trying for years to push Russia’s birthrate higher, but the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic is undermining his efforts” “… The Kremlin has been trying for years to encourage Russians to have more children. … Putin sees replenishing … population as … key to expanding Russia’s economic and political power. But … falling incomes […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “U.S., Russia to Start Nuclear Arms Control Talks This Month” – AP

File Photo of Stealth Bomber in Flight

“The U.S. and Russia have agreed to start arms control talks this month as the only remaining treaty between the two largest nuclear powers is poised to expire in less than a year … Russia has offered to extend the New [START] Treaty … expir[ing] in February, but Trump wants to see a three-way nuclear arms treaty that includes China. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin’s Global Ambitions Are Upended by Coronavirus’s Heavy Toll in Russia” – Wall Street Journal/ Yaroslav Trofimov, Thomas Grove

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

Russian president’s efforts to showcase the country’s strength abroad backfired amid virus troubles at home […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia Puts Defensive Face on Its Nuclear Doctrine Ahead of Arms-Control Negotiations” – Defense One/ Patrick Tucker

Russian Nuclear Submarine

… A country with such a strategy would consider using nuclear weapons – likely tactical ones – at the beginning of a conflict, aiming to press its adversary into quick negotiations. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Despite SpaceX Success NASA Will Pay Russia $90 Million To Take U.S. Astronaut To The ISS” – Forbes/ Jamie Carter

International Space Station file photo

“NASA plans to pay … Russian space agency [Roscosmos] to launch one of its astronauts – and Russian cosmonauts will likely travel to space from Florida next year. … [A]fter … two NASA astronauts went to the International Space Station … from U.S. soil for the first time in almost a decade … it’s definitely not the end of [U.S.-Russian] […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian labs race to find a covid-19 vaccine by fall, but concerns raised about fast-track methods” – Washington Post/ Isabelle Khurshudyan

Coronavirus File Photo adapted from image at cdc.gov

“… [Russia’s] researchers have tested formulas on themselves, members of the military have been selected for trials and some officials are claiming that a breakthrough could be just months away. But Russia’s rush to be first – and claim the global bragging rights for … Putin’s government – is prompting some in the country to raise warnings about possibly cutting […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia says has stopped spread of Arctic fuel spill” – AFP

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

“Russia has … contain[ed] a massive diesel spill into [an Arctic] river … the emergencies ministry [stated] … Environmentalists said the oil spill, which took place [a week earlier] … was the worst such accident ever in the Arctic region. … [A] diesel reservoir collapsed at a power station outside the northern Siberian city of Norilsk[ owned by a subsidiary […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “A brazen foray into the Barents yields predictable Cold War-type friction” – Responsible Statecraft/ Lyle J. Goldstein

File Photo of U.S. Naval Ships in Joint Exercises with UK in Barents Sea, adapted from defense.gov image with photo credit to U.S. Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Anthony Nichols

” … [M]ilitary escalations in the High North need more attention … [not] the [U.S.] media focus … on … Russian trolls, social media influence peddlers, spies, and various ‘useful idiots.’ … [W]hen the New York Times … seemingly … tr[ied] to investigate what might actually be going on under the … waters of the Barents and off the Norwegian […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia Gets More U.S. Ventilators as Coronavirus Cases Climb” – Reuters

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

“A planeload of 150 ventilators arrived in Russia from the United States on Thursday, Washington’s embassy in Moscow said, to help fight the novel coronavirus in further medical aid collaboration between the two politically-estranged nations. Russia’s case tally, the world’s third highest, rose to 441,108 on Thursday after 8,831 new infections were reported, and 169 more people died in the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Diesel Spill In Russian Arctic Could Be Putin’s Exxon Valdez” – Forbes/ Ariel Cohen

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

“… Putin ordered a state of emergency … in the Taymyr region near the Arctic Ocean, after 20,000 tons (150,000 barrels) of diesel fuel spilled from a Russian power plant into … soil and a nearby river. The accident occurred in the Siberian city … Norilsk … [T]he plant’s fuel reservoir collapsed into thawing permafrost, releasing its contents. Diesel is […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Senators to Announce Sanctions Bill on Russia’s Nord Stream 2 Gas Pipeline” – Reuters

American Flag and Partial View of U.S. Capitol Dome, adapted from image at aoc.gov

“U.S. senators [reportedly] will announce a bill this week expanding sanctions on … [the] Gazprom-led Nord Stream 2 project … [that] Washington says will make Europe too reliant on Russian gas. The Protecting Europe’s Energy Security Clarification Act[, spearheaded by Republican Senator … Ted Cruz[ and Democratic Senator] Jeanne Shaheen … follows legislation signed by … Trump last year …. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s New Nuclear Deterrent Policy Allows Nuclear Strikes Against Non-Nuclear Threats” – AP

Iskander Missile with Launch file photo

“… Putin … endorsed Russia’s nuclear deterrent policy which allows him to use atomic weapons in response to a conventional strike targeting … critical government and military infrastructure. … including a non-nuclear attack as a possible trigger for Russian nuclear retaliation … The new expanded wording reflects Russian concerns about the development of prospective weapons that could give Washington the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Rod Rosenstein Offers Limited Defense of Russia Probe; ‘I still believe it was the right decision under the circumstances,’ former deputy attorney general says” – Wall Street Journal/ Aruna Viswanatha and Sadie Gurman

Department of Justice Headquarters Building file photo, adapted from image at justice.gov

“Former Trump Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein … came under increasing criticism from Republicans. … [as he stood] by his decision to appoint special counsel Robert Mueller to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and any links … [with] the Trump campaign … sa[ying] he didn’t know then of … alleged [FBI] improprieties …. [A DOJ] watchdog … […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian government presents National Recovery Plan to President Putin” – bne Intellinews

Cash, Calculator, Pen

“… Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin has presented the National Recovery Plan to … Putin … [with] a launch at the beginning of July. … [T]he government has rolled out two economic support packages, worth RUB3.1 trillion ($42.1bn), or 2.8% of GDP. The RUB7.3 trillion final recovery plan was cut from the previously reported RUB8 trillion plan … includ[ing] the two […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin Sets Constitution Vote for July 1 as Covid-19 Crisis Wanes” – Bloomberg/ Jake Rudnitsky, Ilya Arkhipov

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

“… Putin rescheduled a referendum … open[ing] a path for him to remain in power until 2036[, delayed because of Covid-19]. … [O]riginally planned for April 22[, the referendum] … will be held July 1 …. [with] [v]oting … spread out over a week …. With Russia slowly emerging from [a] two[-]month[] … nationwide lockdown … the Kremlin is rushing […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russians Are Angry, but Putin’s Foes Struggle to Seize the Moment” – New York Times/ Anton Troianovski

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

“The main opposition leader, Aleksei A. Navalny, has seen his YouTube audience triple during the coronavirus crisis. But street protest, his most potent weapon, is off the table.” “… Many Russians are enraged with the Kremlin over its botched handling of the coronavirus pandemic. … Putin’s approval rating … is at its lowest ebb since 1999, when he was a […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Pro-Kremlin entrepreneur buys leading Russian business newspaper; Media executive Ivan Eremin to acquire Vedomosti after censorship row sinks alternative deal” – Financial Times/ Max Seddon

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

A little-known Russian media executive with close commercial ties to the state has bought leading business newspaper Vedomosti […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “For Russia, SpaceX success is ‘wakeup call’ – AFP

File Photo of SpaceX Manned Launch, from image at nasa.gov with credit to Bill Ingalls

Russia has lost its long-held monopoly … ferry[ing] astronauts to the International Space Station following the flawless manned launch by U.S. company SpaceX. … [E]xperts said the launch should be a wakeup call for Roscosmos. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Tanker crosses Russian Arctic route without icebreaker assistance; Commercial shipping on the Northern Sea Route starts earlier than ever before.” – Barents Observer/ Atle Staalesen

Arctic Map

By late May, a carrier had set out on the icy route without icebreaker escort. “… [S]ea ice along the Russian Arctic coast is quickly vanishing as temperatures … have been reaching record highs. With the retreating ice comes tanker traffic. … [T]he ‘Christophe de Margerie’ … on May [19th] kickstarted this year’s shipping season across the eastern part of […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Susan Rice Claims Without Evidence That Russia Could Be Funding Riots” – The Daily Caller/ Chuck Ross

File Photo of Susan Rice and Barack Hussein Obama in St. Petersburg Russia, with Mural of St. Petersburg Scene in Background, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

“Former National Security Adviser Susan Rice claimed without evidence … that the Russian government could be funding violent protests across the U.S. in the wake of the police-involved death of George Floyd. ‘I would bet based on my experience, I’m not reading the intelligence these days but based on my experience,’ Rice said, ‘this is right out of the Russian […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Suing Russia’s president; An ‘ultra-Putinist’ ex-governor has made history with a lawsuit challenging his dismissal. Here’s his story.” – Meduza

File Photos of Law Books and Gavel, adapted from image at fjc.gov

“Mikhail Ignatiev … lost his job as the head of Chuvashia in January … after two scandals: … he advocated ‘wiping out’ bloggers and journalists who praise Western countries … then … humiliated a fireman by forcing him to jump for the keys to a new fire engine. Ignatiev is now … the first public official in Russia to contest […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “City of Moscow Revises Up Its Coronavirus Death Toll for April After Criticism” – Reuters

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

“… Moscow … issued a revised version of its coronavirus death toll for April after criticism of its initial figures, more than doubling the original tally by using what it said was an alternative counting method. … Russia has reported the third highest number of coronavirus cases in the world after the United States and Brazil. … Data published this […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s small businesses left out in the cold by Covid-19” – Financial Times/ Henry Foy

Cash, Calculator, Pen

“Local service-sector enterprises flounder in an economy dominated by large industrial groups.” “… the Kremlin … [must] demand two seemingly opposing outcomes: maintain restrictions to smother the world’s second-largest number of Covid-19 infections and lift a lockdown [that is shrinking GDP] …. [with] [s]mall and medium-sized businesses … trapped in … between. … forced by … Putin to pay salaries […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “A History of Chess in Russia” – Chess24

Chess Pieces File Photo

“In the 80 years since Alexander Alekhine became World Chess Champion in 1927 until Vishy Anand took the title from Vladimir Kramnik in 2007, Russian or Soviet players held the title for all but five years – Max Euwe (1935-37) and Bobby Fischer (1972-75) were the only players to disturb the dominance. … FM Andrey Terekhov looks at those years, […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Oldest cousin of Native Americans found in Russia” – Science Magazine/ Michael Price

Map Depicting Beringia Land Bridge Across Bering Strait, adapted from image at nps.gov

“A new study has revealed … a 14,000-year-old tooth belonging to a close cousin of today’s Native Americans … thousands of kilometers from the landmass that once connected Eurasia and the Americas. … suggest[ing] the Siberian ancestors of North America’s Indigenous peoples were more widespread and mobile …. Sometime about 20,000 years ago, people began to cross the eastern tip […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s Economy Suffers Double Hit From Oil Slump and Coronavirus” – Wall Street Journal/ Thomas Grove, Georgi Kantchev

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

“As infections grow, Russia finds a shortfall in oil revenue hurts its ability to offer the kind of emergency support provided in the West.” “… [Russia’s] slump … began … when coronavirus lockdowns in China and elsewhere pushed oil prices lower. … Putin’s hesitance in joining … big producers to curtail output compounded the problem, driving oil to its lowest […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s GDP shrinks by 20% in April, but government maintains a triple surplus” – bne Intellinews

Cash, Calculator, Pen

“… Russia’s nominal GDP shrank … 28%, of which two-thirds was due to the nation-wide lockdown … another third … due to … oil prices, the Ministry of Finance said …. The real contraction of the economy in April could be 20%, according to the Ministry …. [T]he government has reported … surplus[es] [for] the trade balance, currency account and […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Anatomy of lies; Russia’s covid-19 outbreak is far worse than the Kremlin admits” – The Economist

Kremlin and River

“Like its Soviet predecessor, Vladimir Putin’s system is steeped in falsehoods.” “… official numbers reveal less about covid-19 than they do about Russia’s political system … like its Soviet predecessor, … saturated with lies. Russian elections throw up similarly strange graphics. Many Russian athletes … took performance-enhancing drugs … their cheating … covered up … with official connivance. … [One […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The United States Should Not Align With Russia Against China; Authoritarians make bad allies-and Washington already has the stable and democratic friends it needs” – Foreign Policy/ Matthew Kroenig

Asia Map

“… The growing Russian and Chinese strategic relationship is worrying. The two autocratic powers have cooperated on major energy deals, including a blockbuster $55 billion arrangement to pipe Siberian natural gas into China. … and Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping … [having] high-level summits … Xi … declared Putin ‘his best friend and colleague.’ Perhaps most troubling … have […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Has Russia grown tired of Syria’s Bashar al-Assad? And what is Russia’s role in the clash between the Assad and Makhlouf clans?” – Al Jazeera/ Anton Mardasov

Syria Map

“… What was all this media campaign about then? There are a few plausible explanations for it. First, it may have been ordered by parts of the Russian political elite critical of Damascus. Second, it could also have been used as a way to distract attention from reports by … Novaya Gazeta … of Russian mercenaries torturing Syrians. Third, it […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia Says Many Coronavirus Patients Died of Other Causes. Some Disagree” – Reuters

Coronavirus File Photo adapted from image at cdc.gov

“… [There have been] thousands of Russians infected with the novel coronavirus whose deaths have been put down to other causes. Russia has registered the second highest number of infections globally, at 299,941 total cases, and 2,837 deaths. … a death rate of 1.88 per 100,000 …. The equivalent U.S. figure is 27.61 per 100,000 …. 52.45 in Britain. … […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Moscow’s War in Syria” – CSIS

Syria Map

“… Russia’s military and diplomatic campaign in Syria [has been] the largest and most significant Russian out-of-area operation since the end of the Cold War. … and will shape [Russia’s] military thinking, influence promotion and personnel decisions, impact research and development for its arms industry, and expand its influence …. [D]espite the importance of Russia’s involvement in Syria – especially […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Coronavirus crisis leaves Russian government rudderless” – Financial Times/ Henry Foy, Max Seddon

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

Prime ministerial stand-in faces task of managing pandemic while getting economy moving again ….

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “What’s preventing a respite from the broken U.S.-Russia relationship?” – Defense News/ Steven Keil

“… In addition to a rare joint statement … Trump and … Putin connected numerous times over the past several weeks according to public reports. These developments stand out … [T]ies between Moscow and Washington have long been frozen in place. [Recent developments are] even more surprising given the Kremlin’s continued actions in places like Syria and Ukraine. The dual […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The Vindication of Michael Flynn; Justice drops its prosecution with new evidence about the FBI” – Wall Street Journal Editorial

Department of Justice Headquarters Building file photo, adapted from image at justice.gov

“… Justice … dropped its case against Michael Flynn … ‘with prejudice[]’ …. [E]vidence … undermines the credibility of James Comey’s FBI, special counsel Robert Mueller, and the entire ‘Russia collusion’ investigation. [R]etired Army general [Flynn] … initially pleaded guilty to making false statements … when two agents interviewed him at the White House shortly after he took over as […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “New evidence reinforces the suspicion that Russia was behind the downed MH17 plane” – Washington Post Editorial

Ukraine Air Crash Scene with Uniformed Security Personnel, Flames, Smoke

…. The findings suggest … Putin’s regime was overseeing the separatists at the time the Russian missile was fired at the airliner. …

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “As coronavirus hits record numbers in Russia, this is a dangerous moment for Putin” – CNN/ Nathan Hodge

Coronavirus File Photo adapted from image at cdc.gov

“Russia hit a grim milestone … officially recording the highest number of coronavirus cases the country has seen in a 24-hour period, with 10,633 people testing positive. … [T]he economic pain is worsening … Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on state television … ‘I don’t recall anything like this,’ … adding that plummeting global oil prices — a primary source […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Censorship row threatens Russia’s top business newspaper; Journalists at Vedomosti in open revolt against new editor” – Financial Times/ Max Seddon

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

“A row over censorship has plunged Russia’s top business newspaper into a crisis that could either see it fall under the Kremlin’s control or torpedo a deal to sell it, leaving it on the verge of bankruptcy. Staff at Vedomosti are in open revolt against new acting editor Andrei Shmarov … they say he banned writing about taboo topics for […]

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