164 People Killed in Kazakhstan Unrest

More than a hundred people died in Kazakhstan in the wake of violent riots that shook Central Asia’s largest country this week, media reported Sunday citing the Health Ministry. The energy-rich nation of 19 million people has been rocked by a week of upheaval with nearly 6,000 — including a number of foreigners — detained…

Turkmenistan Plans to Close Giant Burning Gas Pit

Turkmenistan’s strongman leader has ordered experts to find a way to finally extinguish a massive five-decade old fire in a giant natural gas crater in the Central Asian country, dubbed the “Gateway to Hell.” Citing environmental and economic concerns, President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov appeared on state television Saturday telling officials to put out the flames at…

Russian Newsmakers to Watch in the New Year

Politics  Alexei Navalny, opposition figure President Vladimir Putin’s biggest domestic opponent enters the New Year with his movement gutted as he enters the second year of his 2.5-year prison sentence for violating parole on an old embezzlement conviction his supporters call politically motivated. Navalny, 45, also faces an additional 10 years as part of a…

Russia’s Excess Death Toll Hits 930K

Russia recorded more than 115,000 excess deaths during November 2021 according to official statistics published Thursday — a new record high since the start of the pandemic. The number takes Russia’s overall excess death count since the start of the pandemic to 929,000, according to The Moscow Times’ analysis. The record figure for November —…

Russia to Require Netflix to Stream State Television Broadcasts

Russia’s state media watchdog will require Netflix to offer state television channels to its Russian customers after it added the U.S.-based streaming service to its register of “audio-visual services” Tuesday. Roskomnadzor’s register, which was created in late 2020, applies to online streaming services with over 100,000 daily users and requires them to comply with Russian law…

Memorial: NGO That Fought for Victims of Russian Repression

Memorial, dissolved by Russia’s Supreme Court on Tuesday, was the country’s most respected human rights organization whose closure signals the tightening authoritarian tendencies under President Vladimir Putin. The court ruling against Memorial International, the organization’s central structure, seals a swift judicial process to shut down the group, which emerged as a hopeful symbol during Russia’s chaotic transition…

EU’s Russia Strategy Is Like ‘Political Kama Sutra,’ Top Diplomat Says

Russia’s top diplomat on Monday likened the European Union’s policy of “pushing back, constraining and engaging” with Moscow to “political Kama Sutra.”  Brussels’ high representative Josep Borrell outlined the multilateral Russia strategy in June as the sides reached their “lowest level” in relations due to a litany of disagreements including Ukraine, Belarus and human rights. “I…

Russia in 2021: The Year in Photos

Rescuer Alexander Zakovryashin, injured in a search and rescue operation after the Listvyazhnaya coal mine accident, is transported to a miners’ healthcare center in the Kemerovo region of southwestern Siberia. On the morning of Nov. 25, coal dust caught on fire in a ventilation shaft some 250 meters underground, filling the mine with smoke. At…

Russia Denies Withholding Gas Supplies to Europe

Russian energy giant Gazprom has rejected accusations that Moscow is limiting gas deliveries to Europe and denounced Germany’s resale of gas to Poland amid soaring prices. Poland this week accused Moscow of having stopped its deliveries via the Yamal-Europe pipeline that sends Russian gas to Western Europe, accusing Gazprom of “manipulation”. The pipeline was operating…

Prigozhin Bankrolls New Movie About Russian ‘Instructors’ in Mozambique

A new movie backed by Kremlin-linked catering magnate Yevgeny Prigozhin depicts a group of Russian “military instructors” invited to Mozambique to fight Islamic State-linked insurgents in the country’s north. “Granit,” set to premiere next Tuesday on the government-friendly NTV channel, is produced by Aurum, a company in which Prigozhin holds a major stake, according to…

U.S. Became ‘Arrogant’ After Fall of Soviet Union – Gorbachev

Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev said Friday that Washington grew “arrogant and self-confident” after the collapse of the Soviet Union, leading to the expansion of the NATO military alliance. In recent years President Vladimir Putin has grown increasingly insistent that NATO is encroaching close to Russia’s borders, and Moscow last week demanded “legal guarantees” that the…