Norway Rejects Moscow’s Claim It Violated Svalbard Treaty

Norway has rejected Russian accusations of violating the terms of an international treaty regulating activities on the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard, as a diplomatic spat over Russian operations there escalated. Russia complained earlier in February that Oslo-imposed rules were restricting activities of Russian organizations there, calling for bilateral consultations, and on Thursday accused Norway of…

Russia-Turkey Tensions in Syria, Explained

Deadly fighting has led Russia and Turkey to the brink of conflict in Syria as the battle over the war-torn country’s final rebel bastions intensified this week.  Turkish forces and Syrian rebels fought government troops Thursday and Russian warplanes struck back in a sharp escalation in northwest Syria’s Idlib, Russian and Turkish officials said. Moscow…

Russia Gets Tough on Coronavirus. And What Does Surkov’s Departure Say About Modern Russia

As the only remaining independent, English-language news source reporting from Russia, The Moscow Times plays a critical role in connecting Russia to the world. Editorial decisions are made entirely by journalists in our newsroom, who adhere to the highest ethical standards. We fearlessly cover issues that are often considered off-limits or taboo in Russia, from…

Black Smog Raises Siberian City’s Alarms

As the only remaining independent, English-language news source reporting from Russia, The Moscow Times plays a critical role in connecting Russia to the world. Editorial decisions are made entirely by journalists in our newsroom, who adhere to the highest ethical standards. We fearlessly cover issues that are often considered off-limits or taboo in Russia, from…

Trump Offered to Pardon Assange If He Denied Russia Helped Leak Democrats’ Emails, Lawyer Says

U.S. President Donald Trump offered to pardon WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange if he said that Russia had nothing to do with WikiLeaks’ publication of Democratic Party emails in 2016, a London court heard on Wednesday. Assange appeared by videolink from prison as lawyers discussed the management of his hearing next week to decide whether he should be…

2 More Russians Infected With Coronavirus

Two Russian citizens from a quarantined cruise ship have been diagnosed with the new coronavirus, bringing the total number of infected Russian nationals to three, Russia’s Embassy in Japan said Thursday. One Russian passenger of the Diamond Princess liner has been hospitalized on suspicion of contracting the virus, the embassy said Tuesday. More than 620 passengers…

China ‘Dumbstruck’ by Russia’s Coronavirus Entry Ban – Kommersant

Chinese diplomats were at a loss after Russia barred entry to Chinese citizens as a coronavirus prevention measure, the Kommersant business daily reported Wednesday.  Russia announced the temporary entry ban for Chinese tourists, workers, students and private travelers starting Thursday. The suspension does not affect non-Chinese nationals traveling from China, and Chinese transit passengers will…

U.S. Sanctions Russia’s Rosneft Over Venezuela Support

The United States on Tuesday tightened financial restrictions on Venezuela, blacklisting a subsidiary of Russian oil firm Rosneft that President Donald Trump’s administration has said provides a lifeline to President Nicolas Maduro’s government. The sanctions announced by the U.S. Treasury Department increase the pressure on Russia, which the United States sees as the main backer of Maduro’s…

World’s Only Nuclear-Powered Civilian Ship Gears Up for Russian Antarctic Voyage

The Sevmorput, the world’s only nuclear-powered cargo ship, is currently preparing for a voyage to Antarctica to supply Russia’s Vostok research station.  The cargo ship will transport construction materials to the station located 1,200 kilometers from the South Pole, Rosatom, Russia’s state nuclear corporation, said in a Facebook post.  The ship is set to deliver…

Russian Spy Agency Played Role in Berlin Murder of Georgian Man – Bellingcat

Russia‘s FSB security service planned and organised the murder of a Georgian man in Berlin last summer, a killing that triggered diplomatic expulsions from Germany and Moscow, the investigative website Bellingcat has said. Citing mobile phone metadata and a months-long investigation conducted with Der Spiegel and The Insider, Bellingcat published information it said showed the…

Russia Welcomes 20% More Tourists in 2019

Tourist arrivals to Russia have surged by 20.5% in 2019, according to official figures cited by the Association of Tour Operators of Russia (ATOR) on Monday.  More than 5 million tourists visited Russia in January-December 2019, according to ATOR’s breakdown of Federal Security Service (FSB) border service data, up from 4.2 million tourists the previous…

Russia Managing Libya Conflict ‘at Highest Level,’ Turkey’s Erdogan Says

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Russia was managing the conflict in Libya “at the highest level,” Turkey’s NTV broadcaster reported Saturday. Erdogan, whose country backs Libya’s internationally recognized government, has publicly accused the Kremlin-linked Wagner mercenary group of supporting Libya’s rival faction headed by eastern commander Khalifa Haftar. Russia has repeatedly denied its…

Russian Priest Under Fire for Calling Common-Law Wives ‘Prostitutes’

An outspoken Russian priest has sparked public ire for comparing common-law wives to “prostitutes.” Archpriest Dmitry Smirnov, who has raised eyebrows in the past for calling abortions “worse than the Holocaust” and comparing today’s young men to “scrawny chickens,” said recently that Russian women “don’t know what marriage is.” “They don’t want to say ‘I’m a…