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Tracking Islamic State
The thousands of Iraqis fleeing to Baghdad in the wake of the Islamic State (IS) group's capture of Ramadi, west of the capital, are facing an increasingly desperate humanitarian situation. More
How Russia Is Ruled
Tatarstan and Chechnya have used different tactics to secure autonomy in Russia -- and elicited very different responses from Moscow. More
Regional Smoke Detector
For the past several years, the independent Daghestani weekly Chernovik has conducted an annual poll in which readers are encouraged to vote by SMS for whomever from a short list of 10-15 political figures they would like to see as "People's President." This year's surprise winner was Akhmad-hadji Abdulayev, chairman of the Spiritual Board of Muslims of Daghestan (DUMD). More
The Russian Investigative Committee says it has a "sincere" witness who claims a Ukrainian jet took down Malaysian Airlines flight MH17. But other emerging evidence further supports the widely accepted theory that the plane was shot down by a Buk missile fired from separatist-held territory. More
Odds, Ends, And Autocrats
Russian children's rights ombudsman Pavel Astakhov has incensed his critics by condoning marriages between adults and minors and saying some women are "shriveled" by the time they are 27 years of age. More
Human Rights Watch has called on Kyrgyz deputies to reject a bill requiring domestic NGOs that receive foreign funding and engage in "political activities" to register as "foreign agents." More
Blogging Central Asia
Militants of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) found sanctuary in Pakistan’s tribal areas for more than a decade. Now, it appears many have left and are looking for a new home. They might have found one in Afghanistan, right on the doorstep of their native land. More
Notes Of An Iran Watcher
Tehran's temporary Friday Prayers leader, Ayatollah Mohammad Ali Movahedi Kermani, has called on Saudi citizens to rise up against their country's rulers and to speak out against their "crimes." More
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