Region

Russia

Stories under this heading cover Russia, as well as countries in the eastern part of the European continent, such as Belarus, Ukraine, and Moldova.

Editor's choice
News
Lavrov on diplomatic offensive in the Gulf, as poll results suggest Arab street is indifferent to Ukraine situation

Lavrov on diplomatic offensive in the Gulf, as poll results suggest Arab street is indifferent to Ukraine situation

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov visited Bahrain and Saudi Arabia this week as part of efforts to consolidate relations with the region, despite the international outcry over the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The visit comes amid finding in a poll by YOUGOV that show that the Arab street is largely indifferent to the events in Ukraine. Faisal Abbas, the Editor in Chief of Arab News which commissioned the poll, in an article on 30 May, said that "most strikingly, perhaps, the findings lay bare the extent of the distrust of the West across all 14 of the countries covered in the survey. Almost a quarter of the 7,835 people surveyed (24 percent) pointed the finger of blame for the conflict squarely at NATO, while more than one in ten (13 percent) said US President Joe Biden was responsible. Only 16 percent blamed Russia." Abbas says that "this can be attributed in part to Russia’s massive investment in its own news channels in Arabic, and to a massive online outreach effort. But underpinning the widespread Arab skepticism on this issue is not so much the success of Russian propaganda, but rather the steady ebbing away of trust in the West over the past two decades."

Filter archive

Editor's choice
News
Lavrov on diplomatic offensive in the Gulf, as poll results suggest Arab street is indifferent to Ukraine situation

Lavrov on diplomatic offensive in the Gulf, as poll results suggest Arab street is indifferent to Ukraine situation

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov visited Bahrain and Saudi Arabia this week as part of efforts to consolidate relations with the region, despite the international outcry over the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The visit comes amid finding in a poll by YOUGOV that show that the Arab street is largely indifferent to the events in Ukraine. Faisal Abbas, the Editor in Chief of Arab News which commissioned the poll, in an article on 30 May, said that "most strikingly, perhaps, the findings lay bare the extent of the distrust of the West across all 14 of the countries covered in the survey. Almost a quarter of the 7,835 people surveyed (24 percent) pointed the finger of blame for the conflict squarely at NATO, while more than one in ten (13 percent) said US President Joe Biden was responsible. Only 16 percent blamed Russia." Abbas says that "this can be attributed in part to Russia’s massive investment in its own news channels in Arabic, and to a massive online outreach effort. But underpinning the widespread Arab skepticism on this issue is not so much the success of Russian propaganda, but rather the steady ebbing away of trust in the West over the past two decades."
Editor's choice
News
South Ossetia gets a young leader, but his message is old and rusty

South Ossetia gets a young leader, but his message is old and rusty

It was a piece of surreal political theatre of the sort that have become increasingly popular with the choreographers of the Kremlin. On Tuesday (24 May ) the liliputian self-declared Republic of South Ossetia, a de facto Russian protectorate, got a new president. Alan Gagloev was sworn-in at the theatre on Tskhinvali's main square. The choreography was perfect: a military guard of honour, a swearing in ceremony, and delegations of "foreign countries", except they represented other self declared entities such as Abkhazia, Lugansk, Donetsk, Nagorno-Karabakh etc. Most of the world still recognise South Ossetia as part of Georgia. Gagloev came to power unexpectedly, having defeated the incumbent Anatoly Bibilov in elections on May 17. The number of people who voted for him was 16,134 (representing 56.09% of the electorate). Bibilov left his successor a time bomb, due to go off on 17 July, in the form of a referendum calling for South Ossetia's unification with Russia. The Kremlin does not seem to be impressed. Gagloev made no reference to the referendum in his inauguration speech today, but he did heap praise on Russia and promised eternal friendship.
Editor's choice
News
Kyiv says it will not give up territory in return for a cease fire

Kyiv says it will not give up territory in return for a cease fire

The Ukrainian government says it won't agree a ceasefire deal with Russia that involves giving up territory. Presidential adviser Mykhaylo Podolyak said Kyiv would not follow calls in the West for an urgent ceasefire that involved Russian forces remaining in territory they occupy in the south and east of the country. He said making concessions would result in Moscow starting an even larger, more bloody offensive in the longer term. His comments come as Russia continues its attempts to encircle Ukrainian forces defending the eastern city of Severodonetsk. Russia occupied the Crimean Peninsula in 2014,and annexed it to its territory. It also took de facto control of parts of the Donbas region around the same time. Immediately before launching the invasion of Ukraine on 24 February of this year, Russian president Putin formally recognised the territories, which it calls the  Lugansk and Donetsk People's Republics, as sovereign countries. After failing to occupy Kyiv and overthrow the Ukrainian government as part of its invasion plan, the Kremlin is now concentrating on expanding the territory under its control in the Donbas. The internationally community recognises Crimea and the Donbas region as an integral part of Ukraine.
Editor's choice
News
Russia steps up its support for the military government of Mali

Russia steps up its support for the military government of Mali

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Friday (20 May) received in Moscow his Malian counterpart Abdoulaye Diop with promises of Russian support for the the Malian military government across a range of areas, including defence, security and energy. Lavrov speaking at a press conference with Diop accused France of trying to dictate to Mali who they can or cannot communicate with. "This is unacceptable and does not make the French Republic or French manners look good", the Russian foreign minister said. The meeting came on the same day that the German parliament agreed on a reconfiguration of its military contingent in Mali.
Editor's choice
News
Ukraine expects Russia to pay 600 billion USD in war reparations

Ukraine expects Russia to pay 600 billion USD in war reparations

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelesnky said Tuesday Russia should have to pay reparations for the damage it caused to Ukraine after the war is over. “Russia will have to pay reparations. We know it clearly,” Zelensky said when addressing The Wall Street Journal CEO Summit 2022. Since the start of the war, Zelensky says Russia has caused $600 billion in damage to the country. The damage is from the Russian military’s shelling of cities, which have destroyed buildings and water systems, leaving some of those left in the country struggling for basic resources. “They have destroyed everything themselves,” Zelensky told the Journal, noting how quickly the economic relationship between Russia and Ukraine changed. Zelensky said that after the war, Ukrainians want to rebuild the country quickly, calling for businesses to flock to the nation. “I’m sure after victory we will do everything quite fast, and Ukraine will be more beautiful than before,” Zelensky said, adding businesses would “get access to our country, our 40 million-plus market.” Zelensky said the war will not end until weapons are laid down, with Ukraine’s goal to one day take back all the land Russia has occupied, including Crimea.
Editor's choice
Opinion
Russia’s war against Ukraine: where do we stand and what can the future bring?

Russia’s war against Ukraine: where do we stand and what can the future bring?

"Two months into the war against Ukraine there is no end in sight and Russia’s most recent actions even point to an intensification of the fight. The Russian leadership must stop the aggression and reconsider the unacceptable path it has chosen: for the sake of Ukraine, Russia, Europe and the wider world", says Josep Borrell, EU High Representative for foreign and security policy in this article which first appeared on his blog on the website of the European External Action Service on 26 April 2022. In the article the head of the EU diplomacy says that "Defending Ukraine from Russia’s invasion is rejecting the law of the jungle, the notion that “might makes right”. Being “neutral” is a false concept here. One country has invaded another one. Putting them on the same footing fails to differentiate between the attacker and the attacked. Such “neutrality” may respond, of course, to a variety of reasons, from hidden alignment to fear of reprisals, but it becomes in practice support to Russia and its war of aggression."
Editor's choice
News
Charles Michel meets Zelensky in Kyiv and visits Borodyanka

Charles Michel meets Zelensky in Kyiv and visits Borodyanka

European Council president Charles Michel, who is currently paying a surprise visit to the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, met on Wednesday with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.  Later, Zelensky tweeted: "My valuable friend Charles Michel is in Kyiv today. Sanctions against Russia, defense and financial support for our country, and responses to a survey on compliance with EU criteria have been discussed. I thank for the meaningful meeting and solidarity with the Ukrainian people," said Zelensky. During the course of the day, Michel also visited the town Borodyanka. He said that the situation in the town was the same as in Bucha and many other Ukrainian towns. "History will not forget the war crimes that have been committed here. There can be no peace without justice," he said.