Russian Shelling Kills 6 in Donbas as Zelensky Replaces Security Chief

Russian shelling in battle-scarred east Ukraine on Monday left six dead, Kyiv said, as the country was reeling from President Volodymyr Zelensky’s decision to sack two senior law enforcement officials. EU foreign ministers were convening meanwhile to discuss toughening sanctions against Moscow and the bloc’s foreign policy chief warned of the “life and death” consequences…

‘On The Edge: Life Along the Russia-China Border’

Two “super powers”: One in economic decline and seeking to regain its imperial status by brutally attacking a democratic neighbor, the other in seemingly unstoppable economic ascendence, inexorably extending its “Belt and Road Initiative,” and, with it, its global influence. Author Franck Billé Courtesy of the author These are the Russia and China of international…

The Taste of Russia: Pickles with Honey

What’s the dominant taste of Russian cuisine? Surely it’s the sour taste of fermentation — sour cabbage (sauerkraut), sourdough rye bread, soused apples and, of course, sour (pickled) cucumbers. Real barrel-fermented pickles are delicious as appetizers and as ingredients for many dishes. Soups like rassolnik and solyanka and the classic salad “vinaigrette” wouldn’t be possible…

Ukraine Accuses Russia of Shelling from Captured Nuclear Plant

Ukraine’s atomic energy agency accused Russia of using Europe’s largest nuclear power plant to store weapons and shell the surrounding regions of Nikopol and Dnipro that were hit Saturday. Petro Kotin, president of Ukrainian nuclear agency Energoatom, called the situation at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant “extremely tense” with up to 500 Russian soldiers controlling the plant. The…

The Art of Russian Mumbling, Grumbling, and Babbling

Под нос: under your breath Russian – I suppose like all languages — has a bit of fun with various words for speaking outside the normal range of шептать–говорить–орать (whisper-talk-shout). Here we get into onomatopoeia, which in Russian is the more immediately understandable звукоподражание (literally “sound imitation”). This kind of colorful speech might be divided…

Russia’s 5G Expansion Thwarted By Sanctions, Domestic Constraints

Russia’s development of 5G cellular network coverage is on hold due to the exit of major global telecom providers and constraints posed by government regulations, the Business St. Petersburg news outlet reported Wednesday, citing industry experts.  Russia’s digital developments ministry earlier this month said it aims to facilitate the 5G network’s expansion in Russia, including…

Putin Signs Expanded ‘Foreign Agents’ Law

President Vladimir Putin signed into law Thursday legislation expanding the “foreign agent” label to encompass anyone deemed to have fallen under “foreign influence.” Russia’s registry of “foreign agents,” a name with Soviet-era connotations, lists “politically active” people and organizations that Russian authorities determine to have received foreign funding and subjects them to strict auditing requirements.…

Kazakhstan Seeks to Attract Foreign Brands Exiting Russia

Kazakhstan must work to accommodate the hundreds of international businesses that have left Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, the ex-Soviet republic’s president said Thursday. Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has walked a diplomatic tightrope since the start of the war in February, maintaining close ties with Moscow while refusing to recognize the independence of Kremlin-backed separatists in eastern…

Rosatom Technical Academy, Rosenergoatom and Uzatom Agency signed the Memorandum of Understanding in the area of nuclear infrastructure development

The Memorandum of Understanding between Rosenergoatom JSC, Rosatom Technical Academy Independent Non-Profit Organization for Continuing Professional Education (INO CPE) and the Agency for Nuclear Power Engineering Development at the Ministry of Energy of the Republic of Uzbekistan (Uzatom Agency) was signed on July 13. Zhurabek Mirzamakhmudov, Chief Executive Officer of Uzatom Agency, signed the Memorandum…

Europe Aborts Joint Mars Mission With Russia

The European Space Agency (ESA) pulled the plug Tuesday on a joint Russian-European rover mission to Mars in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. ESA chief Josef Aschbacher tweeted that the agency’s council of ministers had determined the circumstances surrounding the March suspension of cooperation with Russia over ExoMars “continue to prevail” and that the official partnership…

Heavy Floods Hit Russia’s Far East

Several villages in Russia’s Far East republic of Sakha are facing severe flooding following heavy rainfall, local authorities said, prompting a state of emergency in the country’s coldest and largest region. The government of Sakha said the rains had broken structures around a dam and left a remote village in Siberia “almost entirely” flooded. “Due…

In Memory of Francesca Mereu

We are deeply saddened to write that Francesca Mereu, an author, playwright, tireless advocate of blues music and former Moscow Times reporter who split her time until recently between Moscow and Alabama, died June 24 in Tijuana, Mexico. Since 2011, Francesca published three books in her native Italian—one on Putin, one on Russia’s transition to capitalism…

Myanmar Junta Chief Visits Moscow

Myanmar junta chief Min Aung Hlaing visited Moscow Tuesday, Russian media reported, as the U.S. vowed to put pressure on his military regime over a 2021 coup.  Russia’s Embassy in Myanmar told the Interfax news agency that Hlaing was in Moscow on a “private” visit.  “He plans to take part in the opening of a…

Russia Confirms First Monkeypox Case

Russia has registered its first case of monkeypox, federal health authorities confirmed Tuesday. “The infection was found in a young man who came back from a trip through European countries and went to a medical facility with a characteristic rash,” state consumer protection watchdog Rospotrebnadzor said in a statement.  Rospotrebnadzor said the patient, whose symptoms…