In Photos: Life in Occupied Ukraine

Since Russia invaded Ukraine at the end of February, it has seized tens of thousands of square kilometers of Ukrainian territory including major cities like Kherson, Melitopol and Mariupol. While many civilians have fled, those who remain in Russian occupied territory are trying to continue with their lives despite the ongoing conflict. The Kremlin appears…

Russia Blasts Zelensky’s Call to Shut Russians Out of the West

Russia has slammed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s proposal to ban all Russian travelers from going to the West, saying the measure would be unfeasible and counterproductive. In a Washington Post interview published Monday, Zelensky called on Western countries to shut their borders to all Russian nationals — regardless of their stance on their country’s invasion of Ukraine…

Sanctions-Hit Russia Starts Stripping Aircraft for Parts – Reuters

Russia’s flagship airline Aeroflot has started stripping its passenger aircraft for parts after Western sanctions over Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine it off from foreign equipment and servicing it heavily relies on, Reuters reported Tuesday, citing four unnamed aviation industry sources. Russia’s 2030 aviation industry strategy envisions the “partial dismantling” of a portion of foreign-made aircraft…

Kremlin Accuses Kyiv of Shelling Nuclear Plant

The Kremlin accused Ukrainian forces Monday of firing on Europe’s largest nuclear power plant in occupied Ukraine and warned the alleged attacks could have “catastrophic consequences.” Kyiv said Moscow was responsible and called for the area to be demilitarized, adding that two employees had been wounded in recent attacks. Fighting continued meanwhile along battle lines…

Russia Has Blocked 138K Websites Since Ukraine Invasion, Prosecutor Says

Russian authorities have blocked or deleted some 138,000 websites since Moscow launched its invasion of neighboring Ukraine in February, the country’s prosecutor general said Monday.  Following over 300 requests from prosecutors, Russia’s communications watchdog Roskomnadzor has censored thousands of websites in a bid to combat “fake news,” according to prosecutor general Igor Krasnov.  “After the…

Ukraine Bombs Key Bridge at Russian-Held Kherson

Ukrainian forces bombed a strategic bridge over the Dnipro river overnight in the Russian-held city of Kherson, the army announced Monday. “What a night for the occupiers in the Kherson region. Strikes in the area of the Antonovskiy bridge,” regional deputy Sergei Khlan wrote on Facebook. Southern army command spokeswoman Natalia Gumeniuk confirmed the attack.…

Pro-Moscow Figures Hail Controversial Amnesty Report on Kyiv War Tactics

Russia has reacted with praise and vindication over Amnesty International’s controversial report accusing Ukraine’s military of endangering civilians during Moscow’s invasion. The U.K.-based rights body drew swift outrage from Ukrainian and Western observers with its report Thursday, which asserted that Kyiv was violating the laws of war by setting up military bases in and carrying…

Russia Expels 14 Bulgarian Diplomats

Russia said Friday it was expelling 14 Bulgarian consular and embassy staff in response to Sofia’s “unmotivated” decision to expel Russian diplomatic personnel as tensions rage over Moscow’s offensive in Ukraine. Multiple European countries have expelled Russian diplomats after Moscow sent troops to Ukraine on Feb. 24, with Russia responding in kind. Bulgaria in June…

Russia Calls for ‘Restraint’ in Restive Karabakh

Moscow on Thursday called for “restraint” following a new escalation in fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region that has left three people dead.  Earlier in the day Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan voiced rare criticism of ally Moscow, questioning the work of Russian peacekeepers in Nagorno-Karabakh. “We express our extreme concern…

Italian Doctors Confirm Ex-Putin Aide’s Rare Disease as Poisoning Not Ruled Out

Italian doctors have confirmed the rare neurological disorder that debilitated President Vladimir Putin’s former senior aide as authorities continue to await in-depth test results to rule out poisoning, according to a family friend and Italian media.  Veteran reformer and former Kremlin climate envoy Anatoly Chubais, 67, was hospitalized with what he said was Guillain-Barré syndrome…

Putin Recognizes Border Guards as War Veterans

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law Thursday recognizing border guards who repel cross-border attacks from Ukraine as war veterans.  The legislation confers war veteran status to active and retired members of the security forces who “repel an armed invasion and provocations on the border and in territories adjacent to war areas in Ukraine since…

Russia Jails Crusading Ex-Cop for 5 Years

A Russian court on Tuesday sentenced an activist for police labor rights to five years in prison for extortion and distribution of pornography. Arrested in May 2020, former policeman Vladimir Vorontsov has been in detention for nearly three years. Vorontsov, who quit the Moscow police force in 2017 after 13 years, has denied any wrongdoing.…

U.S. Sanctions Putin ‘Girlfriend,’ More Oligarchs for ‘Complicity’ in Ukraine War

The United States blacklisted Russian President Vladimir Putin’s purported girlfriend and the tycoon owner of the second-largest estate in London on Tuesday in the latest round of sanctions over the invasion of Ukraine. Also hit with U.S. business bans were several other oligarchs believed to be close to Putin, four officials Russia has named to administer occupied…

Russia Brands Azov Regiment ‘Terrorists,’ Paving Way for Captured Fighters’ Imprisonment

Russia’s Supreme Court declared Ukraine’s Azov Regiment a “terrorist” organization Tuesday, paving the way for the unit’s captured fighters to be tried in Russian courts and potentially face lenghty prison terms.  Moscow has regularly decried the Azov battalion for its past extremist right-wing links, using it to justify its invasion of Ukraine that the Kremlin…

Ex-Yandex Head Takes EU to Court Over Sanctions

The former head of Russia’s top tech firm Yandex Tigran Khudaverdyan has challenged sanctions against him over the Ukraine war in a European Union court. Khudaverdyan filed a lawsuit on June 7 demanding the European Council lift its “discriminatory and disproportionate” sanctions against him. The lawsuit was first reported by TV channel RTVI on Monday…

Medvedev Questions Neighbors’ Sovereignty in ‘Hacked’ Post

A post claiming the ex-Soviet nations of Georgia and Kazakhstan were “artificial” creations appeared Monday evening on former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev’s social media account — but was quickly deleted.  Medvedev aide Oleg Osipov said Tuesday morning that Medvedev’s account on Russian social network VK had been hacked, news agency Interfax reported.  Since the start…

Russia Hits 39 U.K. Citizens With Travel Bans, Blacklists London-Based Arts Foundation

Russia has added 39 British nationals to its list of individuals banned from entering the country.  Among those included on the list are former U.K. prime minister David Cameron, Labour Party leader Keir Starmer, and Foreign and Commonwealth Office communications director Helen Bower-Easton, as well as The Times columnist David Aaronovitch and The Economist deputy…