Also by Neil Bowdler
June 23, 2021
Surprise Order: New COVID Restrictions For Moscow Restaurants, Bars, And Cafes
From June 28, Moscow restaurants, cafes, and bars have been ordered to only serve guests who have been vaccinated, had COVID-19 within the last six months, or have had a negative PCR test within the previous three days.
June 09, 2021
Warning Shot: Some Experts Oppose Use Of Kazakh-Produced COVID-19 Vaccine
Some 100,000 doses of a locally produced COVID-19 vaccine called QazVac have already been distributed in Kazakhstan -- before the publication of late-stage clinical trial data. Independent health experts say more data should have been released.
May 23, 2021
Belarusian Journalist Seized After Ryanair Jet 'Forcibly' Diverted To Minsk
A Belarusian journalist has been detained by police after the commercial passenger aircraft in which he was traveling from Greece to Lithuania was diverted to Minsk due to a purported bomb threat. Raman Pratasevich was taken away by police shortly after his Ryanair flight landed.
May 19, 2021
A COVID Coma And The Birth Of 'Sunshine': A Hungarian New Mother Astounds Doctors
A Hungarian woman, Szilvia Bedo-Nagy, gave birth the day she was admitted to an intensive-care unit with COVID-19. She was put on a ventilator and then on an artificial lung and kept in an induced coma for 40 days but defied expectations and recovered.
April 28, 2021
'A Breath Of Fresh Air': Independent Russian TV Channel Airs Navalny Investigations
An independent TV channel in Siberia is one of the few Russian media outlets that has covered jailed opposition figure Aleksei Navalny. The Krasnoyarsk Independent Regional Channel (TVK) has reported on Navalny's anti-corruption investigations and on protests against President Vladimir Putin.
April 24, 2021
Ten Short Films About COVID: Pandemic Inspires Kyrgyz Directors
In Kyrgyzstan, five directors are making a series of short films about the COVID-19 pandemic hitting the country in the spring and summer of 2020. Ten different stories will tell about how ordinary people experienced quarantine and how the local health-care system was unready for the outbreak.
April 18, 2021
'It's Like A Military Field Hospital Here': Ukrainian Medics And Patients Speak Of COVID Trauma
Current Time has visited the intensive-care unit of a COVID-19 hospital in Kyiv, where a recent surge in infections means every single bed is full. Many patients arrive in critical condition and require mechanical ventilation of their lungs.
April 09, 2021
COVID Crisis In Lviv Region As Patients Pile Up In Ukrainian Hospitals
The COVID-19 pandemic is raging across Ukraine. At a small rural hospital in the village of Lavriv in the country's Lviv region, there are no spare beds and patients are lying in corridors. Ukraine has recorded over 37,000 deaths since the start of the pandemic.
April 08, 2021
Ukrainian Parents Of 13 Children Die Of COVID-19 A Week Apart
A Ukrainian couple with 13 children have both died of COVID-19 in quick succession. The funeral was held for Diana Rodikova on March 31, just days after her husband, Volodymyr, succumbed to the virus. Eleven of their children are under 18.
March 20, 2021
Masked (And Distanced) For A Night At The Bulgarian Opera
Bulgaria's Sofia Opera continues to stage performances for the public under strict hygiene rules, despite the COVID-19 pandemic. A small audience of up to 250 people is allowed to watch performances from the balconies, with the orchestra spread across most of the main seating level.
March 20, 2021
'I Dream About My Patients Dying': Doctor Battles In Ukraine's 'Red Zone' As COVID-19 Cases Spike
In the city of Ovruch in the Zhytomyr region of Ukraine, the number of patients with COVID-19 continues to grow and the government has already designated the region a "red zone" for its high rate of new cases.
February 26, 2021
Battle Goes On For 'Nemtsov Bridge' Memorial, Six Years After Russian Politician's Killing
A week before the sixth anniversary of the murder of Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov, a makeshift memorial on the bridge where he was killed was cleared again by authorities. Volunteers who maintained the photos and flowers on the Bolshoi Moskvoretsky Bridge were detained.
February 17, 2021
Kok-Boru Brings A Village Together In Kyrgyzstan
The small village of Shabdan in Kyrgyzstan's Chuy Valley used to be inhabited predominantly by ethnic Russians. But with many having moved to Russia and others marrying Kyrgyz partners, ethnic divisions here have become less distinct.
February 16, 2021
Hungary Pulls Plug On Last Independent News Radio Station On The Air
Hungary's last remaining independent news radio station has been knocked off the air in Budapest. The country's media authorities refused to extend Klubradio's FM license, saying it "repeatedly infringed" on the compulsory registration law by twice submitting documents late.
February 11, 2021
A Georgian Billionaire And The Park For Traveling Trees
A new Georgian documentary tells the tale of a billionaire's quest to move 200 massive trees, at huge expense and with great difficulty, across land and sea to a private park. Taming The Garden, by the filmmaker Salome Jashi, premiered at this year's international Sundance Film Festival.
February 07, 2021
Goulash For Dessert? Hungarian Makes Cakes, But Not As We Know Them
Hungarian Adrienn Sabjan makes and sells cakes that look like meat stew, chicken paprikash, and other traditional Hungarian savory recipes. After pictures of her taste-twisting creations went viral online, the former financial executive quit her job in 2019 and set up a bakery in Budapest.
January 30, 2021
'Excrement Everywhere': Chinese Miners In Serbia Protest Living, Working Conditions
A protest by Chinese workers at Serbia's Cukaru Peki copper and gold mines has raised questions about the living and working conditions at the site. Three workers who asked for their identities to be protected corresponded with RFE/RL's Balkan Service about their life in eastern Serbia.