Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Under The Black Flag

Tracking Islamic State

A Syrian government soldier displays an Islamic State (IS) group flag after Syrian troops regained control the previous day of Al-Qaryatain, a town in the province of Homs, earlier this month.

U.S. Sending More Troops To Syria, But Islamic State Already Preparing For The Storm

Despite military victories against the Islamic State militant group in Syria and Iraq over the last 20 months, even the commanders of the U.S. coalition fighting it admit that there are new challenges ahead. More

Caucasus Report

Regional Smoke Detector

Until recently, the authorities have consistently downplayed the alleged threat posed to public health by mass-scale toxic emissions from the Elektrotsink plant, which ecological activists say vastly exceed the permitted maximum.

Moscow Moves To Alleviate Major Ecological Problem In North Ossetia

For years, activists in Vladikavkaz, capital of the Republic of North Ossetia-Alania, have demanded the closure of the Elektrotsink metallurgical plant, a major source of environmental pollution. More

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Current Time

Russian Putin used the Direct Line program to play the role of a tough but caring tsar with the power to help ordinary people.

Across Russia, A Scramble To Patch Up Problems Aired In Putin Q&A

In a country where many citizens have seen the state bureaucracy as more of a hurdle than a helper for centuries, a message from the Kremlin came across clearly in Vladimir Putin's annual call-in show on April 14: If you want something done in Russia, better ask the president. More

Qishloq Ovozi

Blogging Central Asia

Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbaev speaks as he attends celebrations on May 1 to mark Kazakhstan People's Unity Day in Almaty, an event that was marked by several protests despite bans on unsanctioned rallies.

Video Land Issue Mars Unity On Kazakhstan's National Unity Day

Demonstrations in Kazakhstan spread over the weekend when events that were intended to be celebrations of National Unity Day instead turned into protests against the planned privatization of land in the country. More

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Balkans Without Borders

Supporters of the Kosovo soccer team holding scarves reading "Kosovo" cheer in the stands during a friendly match between Kosovo and Haiti in Mitrovica in March 2014.

Kosovo's UEFA Dreams

As an independent Kosovo strives to assert itself, soccer is one way the fledgling country is promoting itself on the world stage. Kosovo could receive a huge boost on May 3, when European soccer's governing body, UEFA, could change its rules on eligibility, allowing the country to join the organization. More

Turkey Notebook

Turkish police secure the area after an explosion near the Blue Mosque, in the Sultanahmet district of central Istanbul, in January.

Turkey: A Nation Divided -- Ethnicity (Part 3)

After 1,000 years of generally peaceful coexistence, Turkey’s Turkish and Kurdish communities wake up to a consciousness of difference More