Thursday, November 26, 2015

Under The Black Flag

Tracking Islamic State

Russians burn a Turkish flag during a rally in front of Turkish Embassy in Moscow on November 25.

Audio Slide Show Live Blog: Crisis Over Syria

LIVE A Russian pilot who went missing after his plane was shot down in Syria has been picked up by the Syrian army, the Russian ambassador to France has said, but this has not yet been confirmed by Moscow. More

Caucasus Report

Regional Smoke Detector

Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov

Suspects In Sufi Arson Attack Publicly Vilified

Four young men from the Chechen village of Kurchaloi suspected of an arson attack on the mausoleum of a Sufi saint are being subjected to organized vilification by local residents at the behest of Chechen Republic head Ramzan Kadyrov -- and with his active encouragement. More

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Odds, Ends, And Autocrats

According to Reuters, Katerina Tikhonova (left) is Putin's youngest daughter and she is married to Kirill Shamalov (right), the son of a shareholder in Bank Rossia.

Fathers And Children: The Internet Reacts To Putin's Alleged Billionaire Daughter

Pro-Kremlin bloggers are in a state of denial after the Reuters news agency published an investigation into Putin's two daughters, while the anti-Kremlin crowd has reacted on social media with bitterness. More

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Abuses Uncovered

Russia Tags Kovalyov's NGO As 'Foreign Agent'

Russia's Justice Ministry has placed the nongovernmental Human Rights Institute on its official register of organizations "operating as foreign agents." More

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Qishloq Ovozi

Blogging Central Asia

Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbaev (right) and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan review a guard of honor during during the latter's visit to Astana earlier this year. Ankara has cultivated close relationships with the Turkic peoples of Central Asia since the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Turkish-Russian Tensions Put Central Asia In A Tough Spot

​Turkey's downing of a Russian warplane on November 24 has put the Central Asian states with Turkic peoples in an extremely awkward position. More

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Persian Letters

Notes Of An Iran Watcher

Ayatollah Naser Makarem Shirazi's office issued the statement a few days after the Culture Ministry claimed that Jannati had not been able to meet the ayatollah during last week's trip to Qom due to the cleric's "illness."

Senior Iranian Cleric Refuses To Meet With Culture Minister

Senior Qom-based hard-line Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi has refused to meet with Iranian Culture Minister Ali Jannati to demonstrate his disapproval of the ministry's policies, deemed too liberal by hard-liners. More

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