Tajikistan Seeks Russia-Led Alliance’s Aid as Violence Builds on Afghan Border

Tajikistan has asked a Russia-led alliance for assistance in dealing with security challenges as the United States pulls out of its southern neighbor Afghanistan and Taliban forces advance. Tajikistan is part of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), a loose military alliance of ex-Soviet states that also includes Russia, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Belarus.  Speaking…

Russian Health Worker Detained for Selling Fake Covid Vaccine Certificates – Police

A senior administrator at a western Russian clinic has been detained on suspicion of selling fake coronavirus vaccine certificates, police said Wednesday. The unnamed Kaliningrad region medical worker is the latest and most high-profile suspect in the authorities’ attempt to crack down on the black market sale of falsified Covid-19 jab certificates.  Demand for fake…

Russian Court Bans ‘Happy Tree Friends,’ Anime Films

A Russian court has banned the distribution of adult cartoon “Happy Tree Friends” and several other animated films within the country, the state-run RIA Novosti news agency reported Thursday.  Court-appointed experts determined that “Happy Tree Friends,” which is about three cartoon forest animals that die in graphically violent ways every episode, “contains elements of cruelty”…

Floods Kill 8 in Southern Russia Resorts

At least eight people have been killed by floods caused by torrential rain that have hit southern Russian resort towns over the past week, Interfax reported Wednesday. Authorities declared a state of emergency in six Krasnodar region towns near the Black Sea roughly 1,300 kilometers south of Moscow. Since heavy rainfall began Sunday, two people in…

Famous Faces Join the Race in Russia’s High-Stakes Parliamentary Elections

Several well-known figures from Russian entertainment, media and sports are now eyeing a career change by seeking seats in the country’s September parliamentary elections. The high-stakes elections for Russia’s lower-house State Duma will see the ruling, pro-Kremlin United Russia party seek to hold onto its majority despite historically low approval ratings. Here’s a look at…

Russia Says Ready to Activate Tajik Military Base Amid U.S. Pullout, Taliban Advance in Afghanistan

Russia is prepared to activate a military base in ex-Soviet Tajikistan against advancing Taliban forces on its southern border as U.S. troops finalize their pullout from neighboring Afghanistan, its top diplomat said Wednesday. Tajikistan is host to more than 6,000 Russian servicemen deployed to the Russian Ground Forces’ 201st military base, one of Russia’s few…

Russian Military Delegation Secretly Visited Myanmar Ahead of Junta Leader’s Moscow Visit – Reports

A Russian delegation led by two Navy officers secretly visited Myanmar ahead of its junta leader’s trip to Russia last month, the independent Myanmar Now news outlet reported Tuesday, citing a document it said it had obtained. Senior General Min Aung Hlaing’s multiple-day visit to Moscow followed an air force chief’s trip to the capital in May…

Coronavirus in Russia: The Latest News | July 6

Russia has confirmed 5,658,672 cases of coronavirus and 139,316 deaths, according to the national coronavirus information center. Russia’s total excess fatality count since the start of the coronavirus pandemic is around 475,000. July 6: What you need to know today Russia on Tuesday reported 23,378 new coronavirus cases and a new record of 737 deaths as the country battles the…

Russia Sets New Covid-19 Death Record

Russia on Tuesday recorded 737 coronavirus deaths in the past 24 hours, a new pandemic record and a 13% increase from the previous record of 697 set on Saturday as the country continues to battle a surge fueled by the more-contagious Delta variant.   Moscow, the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic within Russia, recorded 114 deaths,…

Russia Says Its Forests Neutralize Billions of Tons of Greenhouse Gases. Scientists Have Their Doubts.

In June, as western Siberia recovered from its worst forest fires in a decade, Russian President Vladimir Putin toasted his country’s contribution to the struggle against climate change at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, the premier get-together for the country’s business elite. “Our country accounts for one fifth of the world’s forests. They absorb…

Khodorkovsky Says Ready to Relocate His Russia-Based Journalists Facing ‘Next Purge’

Exiled former tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky has said he plans to relocate the employees of his media projects out of Russia or close them altogether over state pressure on dissent. Khodorkovsky launched the Open Media and MBKh Media outlets in 2017 after Russian authorities blacklisted as “undesirable” his pro-democracy NGO Open Russia, banning its activities within…

Russian Food Retailer Defies ‘Gay Propaganda’ Law With LGBT Family-Featuring Ad

Russian organic food retailer VkusVill has featured an LGBT family in its new promotional material this week, defying the country’s law against “gay propaganda toward minors.” As part of a series of health-conscious families, VkusVill spotlights a “matriarch” Yuma, her partner Zhenya and two daughters Mila and Alina, who practice ethical veganism, support fair trade…

Russia Points Finger Back at U.S. Over Latest Cyberattack Accusations

Russia’s Embassy in the United States pointed the finger back at the U.S. Friday after its cybersecurity agencies blamed Kremlin-backed hackers for a massive hacking campaign on Western private and government entities. U.S. and U.K. national security agencies on Thursday said a cyber-unit within Russia’s GRU military intelligence agency has conducted “brute force” attacks on predominantly…

Russia Says Foiled IS Attacks in Moscow, South

Russia said Thursday it had killed an alleged member of the Islamic State jihadist group and arrested another, accusing them of planning simultaneous attacks in Moscow and the southern region of Astrakhan. “Acting on the instructions of the leaders of the terrorist structure, two citizens of Russia planned a simultaneous attack on residents of Moscow…

Russia Tags 4 Khodorkovsky-Linked NGOs ‘Undesirable’

Russia on Thursday designated four European civil society and educational groups associated with exiled former tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky as “undesirable,” a move that risks significant jail time for those affiliated with them. The four NGOs blacklisted by Russian prosecutors are the Britain-registered Khodorkovsky Foundation and its subsidiary Oxford Russia Fund, the Future of Russia Trust…

Putin’s Phone-In Hit by ‘Cyberattacks’

A televised phone-in with Russian President Vladimir Putin Wednesday was targeted by “powerful” cyberattacks, the state-run Rossiya 24 network which broadcast the event said. Shown on Kremlin-friendly media, the annual session with Putin sees the president field in real time queries submitted by Russians throughout the country. This year’s phone-in on Wednesday, which lasted nearly…