Russia & Eastern Europe

Multilateral Iran talks end as a harsh lesson for the West

June 2, 2012

“But after often fraught bargaining in Baghdad, diplomats left declaring they had made no progress at all. “It’s been a difficult few days,” said a European diplomat.”

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House of Representatives examines a plan for the United Nations to regulate the Internet

June 2, 2012

“It’s an unpopular idea with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle in Congress, and officials with the Obama administration have also criticized it.”

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U.S. Secretary of State Clinton and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov agree to work together on Syria

June 2, 2012

“”Her message to him was: ‘We’ve got to start working together to help the Syrians with Syria’s political transition strategy. And I want our people to work together on ideas in Moscow, Europe, in Washington, wherever we need to’.”"

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Russian President Putin calls Syria an “extremely dangerous” situation but rejects calls for military intervention

June 2, 2012

“Amid mounting pressure for Moscow to drop its resistance to tougher UN action on Syria, Putin met with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and had arrived in Paris for talks with newly elected French President Francois Hollande.”

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Secretary of State Clinton: Russian arms sales to Syria are of “serious concern” and could lead to a civil war

June 1, 2012

“President Putin told German Chancellor Merkel that Russia does not support any side in what he called an “extremely dangerous” situation in Syria. Following talks in Berlin, he said Russia “does not provide weapons that could be used in a civil conflict.”"

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Secretary of State Clinton: Syria is on the brink of a sectarian civil war

June 1, 2012

“Russia, like China, has vetoed two Security Council resolutions calling for tougher action against Damascus, while stressing hopes that Annan’s plan can spur a political solution.”

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Russia-based Security Firm discovers Flame, a data-stealing virus that’s infected thousands of computers in the Middle East over the past 5 years

May 28, 2012

“Writing today at Wired News, Kim Zetter reports that Flame is believed to be “part of a well-coordinated, ongoing, state-run cyberespionage operation.”"

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The Syrian Government denies responsibility for killings in Syrian villages that killed over 90 civilians

May 27, 2012

“The U.N. Security Council convened an emergency session for late Sunday to discuss the killing. Diplomats said Russia blocked a strong statement condemning the killing, insisting on a briefing from the head of the observer mission first.”

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Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt: We face a fight for the future of the [World Wide] Web

May 24, 2012

“[Schmidt] called on the international community to “fight for the future of the web” stating that at least 40 governments are now known to engage in online censorship compared to just four a decade ago.”

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Russia tested a new long-range missile that can help penetrate missile defense systems

May 24, 2012

“The Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) was successfully launched from the Plesetsk facility in northwestern Russia and its dummy warhead landed on target on the Kamchatka peninsula on the Pacific coast, the Defense Ministry said.”

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At the upcoming second round of Iran nuclear negotiations in Iraq, the U.S. won’t lift oil sanctions

May 22, 2012

“Negotiators headed to Baghdad for a second round of talks on Iran’s nuclear program won’t be giving Iran the relief it is seeking from oil and financial sanctions hobbling its economy, according to Obama administration officials.”

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Russian President Putin unveils his Cabinet of mostly Putin loyalists with the approval of Prime Minister Medvedev

May 22, 2012

“The president and former KGB officer also consolidated his power over security structures by keeping Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on board, along with Anatoly Serdyukov as defense minister. Long-time Putin ally Igor Shuvalov will also keep his post as first deputy prime minister.”

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Russian President Putin unveils controversial job appointments and fines for protesters

May 22, 2012

“A new law introducing a 200-fold increase in fines for taking part in unsanctioned protests was given preliminary approval by the Kremlin-controlled lower house, setting the stage for toughening Putin’s crackdown on dissent.”

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New Russian President Putin pledges unity in his return to the Kremlin

May 7, 2012

“Parliament is expected to approve to his ally Dmitry Medvedev, 46, as prime minister on Tuesday, completing a job swap that has left many Russians feeling disenfranchised two decades after the Soviet Union collapsed.”

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Amid Protests, Putin is Inaugurated as President of Russia

May 7, 2012

“A 30-gun salute cracked over the eerie quiet of the city, and Russia’s defense minister returned to Mr. Putin the black suitcase that contains the controls to a vast nuclear arsenal.”

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