Pay Raises, More News and Tighter Control: Staff at Russian State TV Work Overtime Amid Ukraine War

“No war” and “They are lying to you” were not messages Russian viewers expected to see during a news bulletin on state-run television.  But that was exactly what happened when producer Marina Ovsyannikova stormed a live broadcast waving an anti-war poster shortly after Russia’s attack on Ukraine.  “The atmosphere was terrible at Channel One at…

Russian Student Sapega Seeks Pardon for 6-Year Belarus Sentence – BBC

Russian student Sofia Sapega has sought a pardon from Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko a month after being sentenced to six years in prison on extremism charges, the BBC’s Russian service reported Monday.  Sapega and her then-boyfriend, Belarusian dissident Roman Protasevich, were detained in May 2021 when Minsk authorities forcibly diverted their international flight as it flew…

Moscow to Send Belarus Nuclear-Capable Missiles Within Months – Putin

Russia will deliver missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads to Belarus in the coming months, President Vladimir Putin said Saturday as he received Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko. “In the coming months, we will transfer to Belarus Iskander-M tactical missile systems, which can use ballistic or cruise missiles, in their conventional and nuclear versions,” Putin said…

Russia Plans First Mass Drone Production – Kommersant

Russia plans to scale up industrial drone production following China’s exit from the commercial market and increasing demand from the Russian military in Ukraine, the Kommersant business daily reported Friday. The open-source drone manufacturer Copter Express (COEX) sold its industrial division to the drone nest maker Hive for an undisclosed sum, the publication reported. Industrial…

Car Bomb Kills Russia-Installed Official in Occupied Ukraine

A Russian-appointed official in southern Ukraine’s occupied city of Kherson was killed in an apparent car bomb attack, local authorities reported Friday. Kherson’s so-called “military-civilian” administration told the state-run TASS news agency that one person died in a car explosion in a residential neighborhood in the early morning. “Today, my friend, head of the department of family,…

Russia Recruits Teachers, Construction Workers and Politicians to ‘Rebuild’ Occupied Ukraine

Russian authorities have launched a campaign to recruit essential workers for the “reconstruction” of eastern Ukrainian territories occupied by its forces, according to public online job postings and news reports. Since shifting the focus of its invasion eastward following a failed effort to capture Kyiv, Russia has said its main objective is to “liberate” areas…

Nike Says Permanently Exiting Russian Market

Nike will make a complete departure from Russia in the coming months, Reuters reported Thursday, citing an emailed statement from the company. The exit comes nearly four months after the U.S. athletic-wear giant suspended its Russian operations on March 3 following the country’s invasion of Ukraine.  “Nike has made the decision to leave the Russian…

Putin Pushes for Stronger Ties with BRICS Nations

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday called for a strengthening of ties with the influential club of BRICS emerging economies, amid unprecedented Western sanctions imposed over Ukraine. “Businessmen of our countries are forced to develop their business under difficult conditions where Western partners neglect the basic principles of market economy, free trade, as well as…

Key Ukrainian City Under ‘Massive’ Russian Bombardment

“Massive” Russian bombardment of Ukraine’s battleground eastern Lugansk region and key city Severodonetsk has been “hell” for soldiers there, Kyiv said, while insisting that defenders would hold “as long as necessary.” Moscow’s troops have been pummeling eastern Ukraine for weeks and are slowly advancing, despite fierce resistance from the outgunned Ukrainian military.  With President Vladimir…

IKEA to Close Russian Stores – Vedomosti

Home retail giant IKEA is moving to close its stores in Russia nearly four months into the country’s invasion of Ukraine, the Vedomosti daily reported Wednesday. IKEA has notified landlords at 10 Moscow shopping malls that it will terminate its lease agreements before they expire, the newspaper cited commercial real estate sources as saying.  Three…

Moscow Vows ‘Serious Consequences’ for Lithuania Over Kaliningrad Rail Ban

Russia’s response to Lithuania’s rail blockade of its exclave Kaliningrad will carry “serious negative consequences” for the Baltic country’s citizens, Russian Security Council chief Nikolai Patrushev said Tuesday.  European Union member Lithuania banned the rail transit of sanctioned Russian goods through its territory on Saturday, enforcing an earlier decision made by the bloc. The move…

In Photos: Ukrainian Medics on the Frontlines

Ukraine on Sunday celebrated Healthcare Workers Day, which was established by the U.S.S.R. in 1980, amid Russia’s ongoing invasion. In a video address, President Volodymyr Zelensky congratulated nurses who “have literally been on the frontlines since Feb. 24” and called them an example of “extraordinary heroism.” During the four months of Russia’s offensive, these medical…

Russia Adds Ukraine Separatist Recognition to School Curriculums

Russian high schools will start teaching students about the Kremlin’s recognition of eastern Ukraine’s breakaway republics as independent states in the upcoming academic year, according to a course outline published on the federal Institute for Education Development Strategy website. In a break with the international community, President Vladimir Putin formally recognized the independence of the…

Russia Threatens To Retaliate as Lithuania Bans Rail Transit to Kaliningrad

Russia on Monday demanded the immediate lifting of Lithuania’s “openly hostile” restrictions on the rail transit of EU-sanctioned goods to Moscow’s exclave of Kaliningrad that borders Lithuania and Poland. Moscow accused the Baltic nation of banning the rail transit of goods subject to sanctions imposed by the European Union over Russia’s miliary campaign in Ukraine.…