Saturday, February 06, 2016


Russia has long voiced alarm about the potential for violence in Afghanistan -- where the Soviet Union fought a disastrous war of occupation for nearly a decade before withdrawing in 1988 -- to spill over into the mostly Muslim countries of former Soviet Central Asia.

Cash Crunch, Stretched Military Spur Russian Troop Cuts Near Afghan Frontier

Money troubles and a military stretched by war in Syria and Ukraine have prompted Russia to reverse plans to send more troops to Tajikistan -- despite what Kremlin officials say is a growing threat from Islamic militants across the border in Afghanistan. More

A crowd demolishes a statue of the Soviet leader Vladimir Lenin in Kharkiv. Scores of Lenin statues were pulled down in Ukraine in 2015 but hundreds more are still standing.

Video Ukraine's Decommunization Gets Boost As 175 Towns, Villages Renamed

The so-called decommunization of Ukraine edged forward on February 4 as parliament approved the scrapping of 175 names of towns, villages, and districts across the country and replaced them with non-Soviet alternatives. More

In the video, a woman who identifies herself as Viktoria Schmidt says she may soon be forced to flee dangerous, migrant-swamped Germany for the safety of homeland Russia. But does Viktoria Schmidt really exist?

Video Website Says It Exposed Russian TV Fakery

Is Russian state television making use of paid, Russian-speaking interview subjects to paint a picture of an out-of-control migrant crisis in Germany? More

WATCH: This activist video shows a Russian police raid on the Simferopol headquarters of SimSitiTrans, a business owned by the father of Crimean Tatar activist Lenur Islyamov. Masked men carrying assault rifles refuse to answer any questions or present any ID.

Video MEPs Condemn Russia's 'Unprecedented' Abuses Against Crimean Tatars

The European Parliament has passed a resolution slamming the "unprecedented levels of human rights abuses" being perpetrated against Crimean Tatars by Russian authorities in the Moscow-annexed Ukrainian region. Since the beginning of the year, Crimean Tatars have endured a wave of searches, interrogations, confiscations, and other harassment. More

Anastasia Antonova, deputy consul at Moscow's Embassy in Bishkek, told Channel One television Russian diplomats rescued two children from organ traffickers

Kyrgyzstan, Russia Spar Over Child-Organ-Trafficking Accusations

A diplomatic ruckus is brewing between Russia and Kyrgyzstan following reports that Russian officials rescued two ethnic-Russian children in the Central Asian country from organ traffickers. More


Recent Features

Micromanaged Democracy: Russia's Ruling Party Schools Candidates On Campaigning

Ahead of elections in September, Russia’s ruling party wants its candidates to toe the party line. United Russia has assembled a collection of videos to instruct party candidates on how to talk to voters about topics from President Vladimir Putin's long reign to the troubled economy and corruption.
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Tajik Name-Change Craze Targets Turkic Words

In his quest to see Persian-rooted names affixed to everything from towns and villages to historical sites and newborns, Tajikistan's president has turned to renaming locations with Turkic-based names.
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Best Friend Says Kolesnikov 'Sank Into Total Despair' Before Suicide

A close friend of Vlad Kolesnikov, the Russian teenager whose suicide sent shock waves across Russia, says his own life has unraveled since the pair staged several pro-Ukraine protests last year.
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Pro-Putin Front's Cartoons Show Russian President Executing Corrupt Officials

Over the last year, a nationwide group led by Vladimir Putin has issued a series of cartoons showing the Russian president summarily executing allegedly corrupt officials in grisly ways -- such as with the help of a circular saw or hungry piranhas. Now an independent journalist has compiled the endings of the cartoons into a single gruesome clip.
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Feat Of Clay: Babylonians Beat World To Geometric Astronomy

A new study claims ancient astronomers used a sophisticated geometric method to plot the path of Jupiter on clay tablets long before the medieval Europeans generally credited with inventing the technique.
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As Consumer Debt Rises In Russia, Collectors Get Violent

A toddler's face seared by a firebomb, a kindergarten emptied by a bomb threat, a man warned to pay up or be forced into prostitution. As consumer debt rises in recession-hit Russia, collectors are resorting to threats and violence -- and sparking calls for action from lawmakers eager to look tough ahead of parliamentary elections.
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Iranian Commanders Who Detained U.S. Sailors Receive Hero Treatment

Officers with Iran's powerful Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) have been showered with accolades for their detention of U.S. sailors who accidently crossed into Iranian waters.
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Kadyrov Posts Video Showing Ex-PM, Antigovernment Activist In Crosshairs

For a Kremlin-backed leader already accused of running a brutal regime in Chechnya, anything -- and apparently anyone -- is fair game.
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Kyiv Criticizes French TV Documentary On Maidan Protests

The Ukrainian Embassy in Paris has expressed disappointment at a French television channel's decision to collaborate on, and air, a documentary that Kyiv argues grossly distorts events of the country’s 2013-14 upheaval that ousted President Viktor Yanukovych.
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As Ruble Nosedives, Russians Are Priced Out Of Life-Saving Western Treatment

Russian fund-raising charities are working overtime to compensate for the plight of the ruble, which has dealt a blow to patients needing life-saving treatment abroad.
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