Russia Won’t Congratulate Biden on U.S. Election Victory Before Official Results – Kremlin

Russia will not yet recognize Joe Biden as President-elect of the United States, the Kremlin said Monday as world leaders rushed to congratulate the Democratic Party challenger after U.S. television networks declared him the winner. “We believe it’s correct to wait for the official results of the elections to be announced,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov…

Nagorno-Karabakh Briefing | Nov. 7

The conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan — now in its sixth week — shows little sign of easing after three ceasefires have fallen apart, and could be approaching a decisive moment as heavy clashes are reported near a key town. Nagorno-Karabakh and areas under control of Armenian and Azerbaijani forces, before the conflict resumed in…

Coronavirus in Russia: The Latest News | Nov. 6

Russia has confirmed 1,733,440 cases of coronavirus and 29,887 deaths. Nov. 6: What you need to know today Russia has confirmed the record-breaking number of 20,582 new coronavirus cases and 378 deaths.  Chinese authorities suspended entry for Russians with valid visas and residence permits because of Russia’s spike in coronavirus cases, the Chinese Embassy in Moscow announced Thursday.  Russia has recorded…

Belarus Briefing | Nov. 6

Belarus has seen weekly mass protests against the disputed presidential re-election of Alexander Lukashenko for nearly three months. On Monday, exiled Belarusian opposition candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya called for a national strike after the deadline she set for Lukashenko to resign and free all political prisoners expired the previous day. Here’s more of the latest news…

‘Crucified Jesus’ Detained Outside Moscow FSB Headquarters

A Russian activist has been detained for staging a half-naked crucifixion stunt outside the Federal Security Service (FSB) headquarters in central Moscow, witnesses reported late Thursday. Pavel Krisevich replicated the crucifixion of Jesus Christ while other activists in raincoats labeled “FSB” doused the surrounding area with a harmless burning liquid and scattered folders signifying criminal…

OSCE Condemns Belarus Torture, Calls for Fresh Presidential Vote

A report from the OSCE election-monitoring organization published on Thursday condemned “massive” rights abuses and torture in Belarus and called for a re-run of the country’s August presidential polls in which President Alexander Lukashenko claimed victory. The first major independent report into the election and subsequent crackdown by authorities said human rights abuses “were found…

Nagorno-Karabakh Briefing | Nov. 5

The conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan — now in its sixth week — shows little sign of easing after both sides accused the other of breaking an agreement not to target residential and civilian areas with missile strikes. Nagorno-Karabakh and areas under control of Armenian and Azerbaijani forces, before the conflict resumed in September 2020.…

Russia Moves to Grant Ex-Presidents Lifetime Immunity From Prosecution

Russian lawmakers submitted legislation Thursday that would grant former presidents lifetime immunity from criminal prosecution under President Vladimir Putin’s constitutional reforms, Interfax reported. Under current laws, presidents cannot be held criminally or administratively liable for crimes committed while serving their terms. A parliamentary working group assessing Putin’s constitutional reforms proposed earlier this year to extend…

Belarus Briefing | Nov. 4

Belarus has seen weekly mass protests against the disputed presidential re-election of Alexander Lukashenko for nearly three months. On Monday, exiled Belarusian opposition candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya called for a national strike after the deadline she set for Lukashenko to resign and free all political prisoners expired the previous day. Here’s more of the latest news…

Coronavirus in Russia: The Latest News | Nov. 5

Russia has confirmed 1,693,454 cases of coronavirus and 29,217 deaths. Nov. 4: What you need to know today Russia has confirmed the record-breaking number of 19,768 new coronavirus cases and 389 deaths.  Russia is set to miss the self-imposed coronavirus vaccination timeline, information obtained by the business news website The Bell suggests. While the authorities have vowed to vaccinate…

Russia Not on Track for Mass Coronavirus Vaccination by Year-End – The Bell

Russia will likely miss its self-imposed timeline for mass vaccination against the coronavirus because of insufficient production capacity, the business news website The Bell reported Tuesday. Authorities have vowed to vaccinate a sizable part of Russia’s population by the end of 2020, but developers are reportedly facing issues with scalability and quality control. As a…

Belarus Launches Nuclear Plant Despite Baltic Outcry

Belarus on Tuesday launched its controversial Russia-built nuclear power station despite safety concerns from neighboring Baltic states three decades after the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. The launch comes as Belarus strongman president Alexander Lukashenko faces historic protests against his claim to victory in August presidential polls that Western leaders and his critics say were fraudulent. Ahead of…

Nagorno-Karabakh Briefing | Nov. 3

The conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan — now in its sixth week — shows little sign of easing after both sides accused the other of breaking an agreement not to target residential and civilian areas with missile strikes. The United Nations warned Monday evening those attacks “may amount to war crimes.” Nagorno-Karabakh and areas under…

Harrowing Coronavirus Stories Emerge From Russia’s Battered Regions

The second record-breaking wave of coronavirus infections battering Russian regions has been accompanied by distressing stories and images of patients struggling in a strained health system. Cities including St. Petersburg and the western enclave of Kaliningrad have seen their highest caseloads since the spring outbreak, while the Moscow region has doubled Covid-19 hospitalizations over the…

Nagorno-Karabakh Briefing | Nov. 2

Armenia and Azerbaijan failed to strike another ceasefire in talks brokered by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), as Baku pledged to “fight to the end” to recapture territory which has been controlled by Armenia-backed separatists since 1994. Meanwhile, Yerevan formally opened consultations with Moscow over when Russia would come to the…

Belarus Rights Abuses Under Fire at UN

Belarus faced harsh criticism at the UN on Monday, with diplomats slamming arbitrary detentions and torture allegations in the response to months of protests against President Alexander Lukashenko. During a review of Belarus’s rights record at the United Nations in Geneva, many diplomats urged Belarus authorities to halt the crackdown on demonstrators, who since August have…

Coronavirus in Russia: The Latest News | Nov. 2

Russia has confirmed 1,655,038 cases of coronavirus and 28,473 deaths. Nov. 2: What you need to know today Russia has confirmed 18,257 new coronavirus cases and 238 additional deaths.  Only 36% of Russians are ready to vaccinate against Covid-19, according to the results of an independent Levada Center poll published by Russia’s Open Media news Monday. The share of Russians unwilling to…

Russia Battles Four-Year Doping Ban

Russia’s attempt to overturn its four-year ban from international sport got underway in Lausanne Monday, the latest chapter of a long-running and controversial saga over state-sanctioned doping. Global anti-doping body WADA in December last year declared the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) to be non-compliant after being accused of manipulating testing data. The ban meant the…