EU Parliament Calls for Special Tribunal to Punish Russian War Crimes in Ukraine

The European Parliament has adopted a resolution to establish a special international tribunal that will prosecute Russia’s political and military leadership and its allies for “the crime of aggression against Ukraine.” In a statement Thursday, European MEPs said the tribunal would fill a vacuum in international criminal justice and complement the investigative efforts of the…

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Slain Negotiator Helped Ukraine Defend Kyiv From Russian Forces – WSJ

A slain Ukrainian banker with ties to Russia had provided crucial information on Russia’s imminent invasion that helped Ukraine’s military to resist Moscow’s assault on Kyiv, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday. Denys Kireyev, 45, was an informal member of Ukraine’s negotiating team with Russia when officers from Ukraine’s SBU domestic intelligence agency summoned him…

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Russia Charges U.S. Citizen With Espionage

Russia’s domestic intelligence agency announced Thursday it has launched an espionage case against a U.S. citizen. Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) alleged that the American national “collected intelligence information of a biological nature aimed against Russia’s security.”  The FSB did not identify the man by name. It also did not specify when the U.S. citizen was…

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Ukraine Interior Minister Among 18 Killed in Helicopter Crash Near Kyiv

At least 18 people, including Ukraine’s interior minister, have been killed in a helicopter crash outside the Ukrainian capital Kyiv, authorities said Wednesday, in what President Volodymyr Zelensky has called a “terrible tragedy.” The aircraft fell near a kindergarten in the town of Brovary, some 20 kilometers northeast of Kyiv, while children and staff were inside…

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Kremlin: Russian Firms Can Ignore ‘Unfriendly’ Foreign Shareholders

The Kremlin has given major Russian companies permission to disregard the votes of shareholders from so-called “unfriendly” countries this year as a means of combatting the effectiveness of Western sanctions. The decree, signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday, stipulates that the regulations apply to big firms in the energy, engineering, and trade sectors…

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‘Our Motherland Needs Saving,’ Navalny Says 2 Years After Return and Imprisonment

Jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny on Tuesday vowed to continue his political activism on the two-year anniversary of his return to Russia and subsequent imprisonment. Navalny, 46, was arrested upon arrival at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport on Jan. 17, 2021, after recovering in Germany from a near-fatal 2020 poisoning he blames on the Kremlin. Western scientists identified…

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Russian Officials ‘Banned’ from Trips Abroad Amid Wartime Vacation Scandals – Reports

Russian governors and party leaders in several regions have informally restricted local officials from traveling abroad following controversy over civil servants’ wartime visits to luxury resorts overseas, the Kommersant daily reported Tuesday. Two regional deputies faced public backlash, including from a top official at Russia’s ruling party, after footage of their New Year’s holidays in Mexico and…

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Belarus Begins Trial in Absentia of Protest Leader Tikhanovskaya

The trial in absentia of Belarus opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya opened in Minsk on Tuesday, state news agency Belta reported, as strongman Alexander Lukashenko pursues critics that challenged his last election. Tikhanovskaya, who claimed victory in 2020 presidential elections, faces a litany of charges including high treason, “conspiracy to seize power” and creating and leading an…

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Moscow’s New Tretyakov Gallery Marks a Century Since the U.S.S.R. Was Founded

A new exhibition entitled “U.S.S.R. 100” at Moscow’s New Tretyakov Gallery marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Soviet Union, albeit at a fairly awkward time given Russia’s ongoing invasion of another former Soviet republic and Russian society’s deep polarization on the subject of its Soviet legacy. The exhibition contains some 400 paintings,…

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Russian Ex-Wagner Commander Flees to Norway, Seeks Asylum – Reports

A former commander for Russia’s Wagner private military group who claims to have witnessed several extrajudicial killings has fled to Norway and requested asylum, Russian activists and Norwegian media reported. “I heard dogs barking [and] two bullets flying near me,” the man identified as Andrei Medvedev said of his dramatic journey across the Russian-Norwegian border late…

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Reboot of Soviet Cartoon Becomes Russia’s Highest-Grossing Film

A Russian film reboot featuring legendary Soviet cartoon character Cheburashka has become Russia’s highest-grossing film of all time, surpassing the first part of James Cameron’s “Avatar” despite only being released two weeks ago, according to statistics published by the Russian Cinema Fund.  The total box office from “Cheburashka,” which was released on Jan. 1, has already surpassed…

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Reboot of Soviet Cartoon Becomes Russia’s Highest-Grossing Film Ever

A Russian film reboot featuring legendary Soviet cartoon character Cheburashka has become Russia’s highest-grossing film of all time, surpassing the first part of James Cameron’s “Avatar” despite only being released two weeks ago, according to statistics published by the Russian Cinema Fund.  The total box office from “Cheburashka,” which was released on Jan. 1, has already surpassed…

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As Russia Claims Win, Analysts Say Capture of Soledar Is ‘Pyrrhic Victory’

Russia’s Defense Ministry claimed that its forces had won a significant victory on Friday with the capture of the eastern Ukrainian town of Soledar, despite military analysts cautioning that the salt-mining town held greater symbolic than strategic value.  The situation on the ground in what remains of Soledar remained unclear late Friday, with Ukrainian officials…

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Exiled Russians’ Properties Should Be Seized, Lawmakers Say

Russians who criticize their country after fleeing abroad should have their remaining property confiscated, lawmakers proposed Friday in an apparent effort to increase pressure on exiled anti-war Russians. Vyacheslav Volodin, speaker of the lower-house State Duma, said “scoundrels” who have left the country can still face criminal prosecution for “insulting Russia, its inhabitants, soldiers and officers.”…

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Critical Russian Emigres Should Have Property Seized, Lawmakers Say

Russians who criticize their country after fleeing abroad should have their remaining property confiscated, lawmakers proposed Friday in an apparent effort to increase pressure on exiled anti-war Russians. Vyacheslav Volodin, speaker of the lower-house State Duma, said “scoundrels” who have left the country can still face criminal prosecution for “insulting Russia, its inhabitants, soldiers and officers.”…

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Kremlin Readies for Putin’s 2024 Re-Election Under Shadow of War – Kommersant

The Kremlin has started preparing for the 2024 presidential campaign under the assumption that it will go on as planned despite Russia’s grinding military campaign in Ukraine, the Kommersant business daily reported Friday, citing unnamed sources. President Vladimir Putin, 70, has been in power as president or prime minister since 1999. While Russian presidents are…

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Wounded Russian Soldiers Returned to Front Without Proper Treatment – Agentstvo

A number of injured Russian soldiers are being sent back to the frontlines in Ukraine without permission from the military medical commission, the Agentstvo investigative outlet reported Thursday. The presidential Human Rights Council is investigating cases in which servicemen didn’t receive proper medical treatment before being sent back into battle, council member Olga Demicheva told the…

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First President of Russia’s Bashkortostan Murtaza Rakhimov Dies at 88

Murtaza Rakhimov, the first president of Russia’s republic of Bashkortostan, died at age 88 on Wednesday in the region’s capital Ufa after a prolonged illness, Bashkortostan’s current head Radiy Khabirov announced.  A village boy from Bashkortostan’s southwestern Kugarchinsky district, Rakhimov built a successful career in the region’s thriving oil refining industry before being elected the…

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