Roger Waters to Speak for Russia at UN Security Council on Ukraine, Moscow Claims

British musician Roger Waters of the rock group Pink Floyd will speak on behalf of Russia at the upcoming UN Security Council meeting on Ukraine, Russian diplomats said Wednesday. Dmitry Polyansky, Russia’s first deputy UN representative, said Waters’ attendance has been confirmed for the Russian-requested Security Council session. Waters himself has neither confirmed nor denied his attendance…

Pro-War Russian Nationalist ‘Executed’ in Eastern Ukraine

A Russian pro-war nationalist mercenary has died from a gunshot wound to the head in eastern Ukraine in what his family called an assassination, state media reported Wednesday. Igor Mangushev, 36, was hospitalized over the weekend after an apparent “execution-style” shooting at close range at a checkpoint in the Russian-occupied Luhansk region.  Citing his friend Akim Apachev, the Russian…

Russian Maps Featuring Occupied Ukraine Territories Go on Sale in Moscow

Bookstores across Moscow have begun selling maps that show four partially occupied southeast Ukrainian regions as Russian territory, media reported Wednesday, as lawmakers move to outlaw displaying the regions as part of Ukraine. Major chains have this week started accepting maps with the Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions of eastern and southern Ukraine in the…

Russia’s Central Bank Under Pressure to Be ‘More Upbeat’ – Bloomberg 

President Vladimir Putin’s government is pressuring Russia’s Central Bank to be “more upbeat” about the country’s economy amid the invasion of Ukraine and international sanctions, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday. Russian officials reportedly want the Bank of Russia to send “a clearer hint” that interest rates may come down later this year, Bloomberg said, citing its sources.…

First Person Accused of Spreading ‘False Information’ on War Jailed in Absentia for 9 Years

A court in Moscow sentenced the first person to have been charged under Russia’s wartime law against spreading “knowingly false information” to nine years in jail in absentia on Monday, the independent broadcaster Sota reported. Veronika Belotserkovskaya, a Ukrainian-born Russian journalist and the owner of a culinary school in France where she lives, was among the first people…

Russia Jails Blogger for 9 Years in Absentia for ‘False Information’ on War

A court in Moscow sentenced one of the first people charged under Russia’s wartime law against spreading “knowingly false information” to nine years in jail in absentia on Monday, the independent broadcaster Sota reported. Veronika Belotserkovskaya, a Ukrainian-born Russian journalist and the owner of a culinary school in France where she lives, was among the first people to be…

Putin Sends Condolences to Erdogan, Assad After Devastating Earthquake

Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed “the most sincere condolences” to his Turkish and Syrian counterparts after a 7.8-magnitude earthquake killed over 1,400 people early Monday. “We share the sorrow and pain of those who lost their relatives and loved ones,” Putin told Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in a message published on the Kremlin’s website. He noted the…

Ukraine to Replace Defense Minister After Corruption Scandals

Ukraine’s Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov will be replaced by the chief of the military intelligence ahead of an expected Russian offensive and following corruption scandals, a senior lawmaker said Sunday.  “We are preparing decisions and negotiations that should strengthen our soldiers, give Ukraine more international support and more weapons,” President Volodymyr Zelensky said in his evening…

Austria Expels 4 Russian Diplomats

Austria is expelling four Russian diplomats for conduct “incompatible” with their status, Vienna announced Thursday. Austria’s foreign ministry identified the “personae non gratae” as two workers with the Russian Embassy and two with the Russian mission to the UN without providing their names. Vienna gave the four diplomats until next Wednesday, Feb. 8, to return…

Russia ‘Acquiring Features of Dictatorship’ After Ukraine Invasion – Study

Democratic standards worldwide improved slightly in 2022 after the lifting of Covid-19 restrictions, but plummeted further in Russia following its invasion of Ukraine, the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) said on Thursday. Overall, less than half — 45.3% — of the world’s population is living in a democracy, the London-based analysis group said. “More than a third of…

Russia Outlaws Lithuania-Based Opposition Forum as ‘Undesirable’

Russia has added the Free Russia Forum, a platform uniting leading figures of Russia’s liberal opposition, to its list of “undesirable” organizations, the Prosecutor General’s Office said Wednesday.  The Prosecutor General’s Office said a review of the Lithuania-based organization’s activities concluded that it “poses a threat to the constitutional order and security of the Russian…

Russian Opposition Journalist Jailed in Absentia for ‘Fake’ War Coverage

A Russian court sentenced a well-known exiled opposition journalist to prison Wednesday for “fake news” about the Russian military’s deadly attacks on civilians in Ukraine. Alexander Nevzorov, 64, was the first prominent political reporter and commentator to be charged in March 2022 under a newly adopted law banning what authorities deem to be false information about…