Russia & Eastern Europe

U.S. State Department Criticizes Ukraine For Politically-Motivated Punishment of Parliament Member

March 8, 2013

“State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell issued a statement scathing in its diplomatic language after a court expelled Serhiy Vlasenko from the legislature, revoked his parliamentary immunity from prosecution and banned him from traveling outside Ukraine.”

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Carnegie Moscow Center Analyst: Russian President Putin Undoing Prime Minister Medvedev’s Reforms

March 5, 2013

“Analysts generally agree that Mr. Medvedev’s dismissal and political obscurity are imminent.”

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U.S. Scrambled Two F-15 Fighter Jets to Intercept Russian Nuclear Bombers Over the U.S. Island of Guam

February 24, 2013

“U.S. military officials say “it’s highly unusual but not unprecedented” that Russian bombers would fly training missions in the vicinity of Guam. According to one official, “It wasn’t provocative but it certainly got our attention.””

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U.S. Marine Corps Set to Announce New Crisis Response Task Force in Eastern Europe and North Africa

February 21, 2013

“The group, which will be known as the Marine Air-Ground Task Force, will likely be based at Naval Air Station Sigonella in Sicily, Italy.”

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Copyright Dispute Prevents Germans From Viewing Video of Russian Meteorite

February 20, 2013

“Germany doesn’t have an equivalent of the American fair use provision, which this would almost certainly fall under in the United States.”

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Russia and the Arab League Propose Direct Talks Between Syrian Government and Opposition Rebels

February 20, 2013

“Mr Lavrov said the Kremlin and the Arab League wanted to establish direct contact between the Syrian government and the opposition.”

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High Power Utility Costs Prompt Bulgaria Prime Minister Boris Borisov to Resign

February 20, 2013

“Electricity bills have gone up 13% since July. For many protesters the rising cost brings back memories of Bulgaria’s communist past and the poverty prevalent during that period.”

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Report: Russia Continuing to Send Weapons to Syria Despite Agreement to Stop

February 18, 2013

“The flow of arms has, however, continued unhindered with the Russians stressing that there was no United Nations prohibition on supplies and it was simply fulfilling its contractual obligations.”

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Russia Accuses Texas Adoptive Mother of Abusing and Killing Her 3 Year-Old Russian-Born Son

February 18, 2013

“Pavel Astakhov, Russia’s children’s ombudsman, said that a three-year-old Russian boy he named as Maxim Kuzmin had died after being given inappropriate drugs and abused by his new mother in Texas. The mother was named by the Russians as “L Shatto”.”

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Secretary of State John Kerry Gets in Contact With Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov After a Week

February 18, 2013

“The State Department had complained last week that Kerry was unable to get in touch with Lavrov to discuss North Korea’s recent nuclear test, although the Foreign Ministry said Lavrov was traveling around Africa and couldn’t make contact.”

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Meteorite Explodes Over Russia, Injuring At Least 1,000 People

February 15, 2013

“More than 1,200 people were injured when a massive meteor broke apart above the Russian city of Chelyabinsk today, raining burning bits of rock over the city that shattered windows and caused a panic.”

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Documents: United States is Target of “Sustained” Cyber-Espionage Campaign From China

February 11, 2013

“Over the past five years, the Chinese have focused their efforts on businesses operating in finance, technology, and aerospace, among others, according to the Post.”

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Russian Coal Mine Explosion Kills 18 Miners

February 11, 2013

“The Emergency Situations Ministry said dozens of men were working in the Vorkutinskaya mine in the Komi region at the time of the blast, which officials blamed on a buildup of methane gas.”

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Activist Group: Moscow Used Radioactive Material to Melt Snow

February 7, 2013

“The group specifies that Moscow roads are being de-iced with yellow halite and a substance known by the abbreviation SBG.”

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Ukraine Government Rejects $7 Billion Bill From Russia’s Gazprom For Unused Gasoline

February 7, 2013

“Energy Minister Eduard Stavitsky said there were “no grounds” to pay the money, which makes up nearly 4% of the country’s GDP ($183bn).”

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