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The paradox of Armenia’s domestic violence law

If passed, Armenia’s draft law against domestic violence will only nurture patriarchy.

“We don’t want to be invisible”: the meaning of Azerbaijan’s LGBT purge

In late September Azerbaijan’s police rounded up and detained dozens of LGBT people. What explains this sudden crackdown?

A response to “Georgian land, Georgian freedom”

We recently published an article arguing in favour of Georgia’s proposed ban on selling agricultural land to foreign buyers. A foreign landowner with several years’ experience in the country’s agricultural sector uses his right of response to argue against the move.

Stopping the spin from Azerbaijan’s very special laundromat

osce_budapest_portrait-37.jpgWe all know about Baku’s international efforts to whitewash criticism of human rights abuses. What makes these latest revelations so different?


Armenia’s parents dream of having sons

Armenia still has one of the world’s highest rates of sex-selective abortions. Here are the mothers’ stories.

Georgia’s highlanders against hydropower

As the Georgian government moves ahead with its plans for increasing the country’s hydropower capacity, local communities are being sidelined in the process of compensation payments.

In Chechnya, a ruthless strongman orders family reunification

Ramzan Kadyrov wants to reunite Chechnya’s divorced couples. His initiative could only put already vulnerable women at grave risk.

Mayor or manager? Tbilisi chooses its kingpin

Here in Tbilisi, we’re preparing for mayoral elections in October. The race will be heated, but can the role actually change anything for the better?

Neither here, nor there: Georgian refugees from Abkhazia

Twenty five years have passed since the war in Abkhazia, but ethnic Georgian refugees from the breakaway territory remain in limbo. RU

Meet the women affected by Abkhazia’s abortion ban

A year and a half ago, the authorities in Abkhazia banned abortions in nearly all circumstances. These women have paid the price.

The burning land of Lenin-Aul

In a remote corner of Dagestan, a vicious land dispute has erupted between Avars and Chechens. RU

Inside Ingushetia’s anti-extremism centre: torture, extortion, murder

Russia’s anti-extremism centres are notorious for their brutal torture. Here are the stories of its victims in Ingushetia, where for the first time, some of the organisation’s operatives face trial for their crimes.

Armenia and Azerbaijan’s collision course over Nagorno-Karabakh

Sound principles for conflict resolution over Nagorno-Karabakh exist. But mistrust, a gulf between mediators and the parties involved, as well as Baku and Yerevan's appetite for military gains render the current formula impossible. 

Turkey’s fight against Gülen in the South Caucasus

The Turkish authorities’ fight against real and imagined enemies in the Gülen movement has now reached Azerbaijan and Georgia.

A transgender life in Chechnya

As reports of purges of gay men surfaced, Chechnya recently made international headlines. A transgender woman, now in exile, reflects on her place in Chechen society.

Walking free in Azerbaijan

It’s easy to celebrate when Azerbaijan’s political prisoners are released. But ensnared by public stigma and personal trauma, what are the chances that they ever find a place for themselves in society?

Do you speak Mingrelian?

A major language in western Georgia could struggle for survival  because it’s not considered one.

A culinary conflict in the South Caucasus

How national cuisines became yet another battlefield in the enmity between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Русский

Georgia’s Russian cipher

What can the politics of ethnic Russians in Georgia tell us about the country’s attempt to build a truly civic national identity?

The inequality of women keeps the North Caucasus vulnerable

Corruption, violence and underdevelopment still plague Russia’s North Caucasus. By empowering women, the Russian authorities could build grounds for a more sustainable peace. 

In Armenia, the frontline starts at school

The conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh is no closer to resolution. But in Armenia, a few teachers are encouraging their students to think beyond “ancient hatreds”. Русский

Is Georgia still safe for Azerbaijani dissidents?

Georgia has long been an oasis for dissidents from neighbouring Azerbaijan. But with Baku investing in its western neighbour at record levels, are they still safe?

How Azerbaijan is losing its brains

Educated young people in Azerbaijan see few prospects for work at home  and even fewer if they’re critically-minded. Русский

Long live the Azerbaijani diaspora!

Baku is going to great lengths to mobilise, or even create, an international Azerbaijani diaspora. To what end? Русский

Chechens alienated amidst gay persecutions

News of mass arrests, detentions and murders of LGBT people in Chechnya has spread around the globe. The outrage prompts this Chechen journalist to reflect on his people’s place in the world.

საქართველოს ახალი კონსტიტუცია აკავებს ნამდვილ ცვლილებას

საქართველოს კონსტიტუციაში ლიბერტარიანული პრინციპების განმტკიცებით, მმართველ პარტიას სურს შეინარჩუნოს მცირე მთავრობა და კიდევ უფრო მცირე სივრცე თანასწორობის პოლიტიკისთვის. English

Georgia’s new constitution keeps real change in check

FullSizeRender.jpgBy reinforcing libertarian principles in Georgia’s constitution, the ruling party aims to keep government small — and the space for egalitarian politics even smaller. ქართული

“It all comes down to the fact that I’m wearing the hijab”

The realities of political administration in Russia’s North Caucasus are leaving their mark on the education system. Русский

Гагик Царукян возвращается

Перед парламентскими выборами в Армении один из самых колоритных публичных персонажей возвращается в политику. Кто такой Гагик Царукян - и какова его политическая позиция? English

Behind Azerbaijan’s facades

In Azerbaijan, power is strictly a family business. Русский

Convert and love: Russia’s Muslim wives

Russian women marrying Muslim men convert to Islam in the certainty that a shared religion will strengthen their family. Nevertheless, cultural differences often win out — and Russian Muslims’ world remains closed to converts. Русский

Love, North Caucasus style

In the North Caucasus, traditional and modern expectations of relationships are more chequered than a patchwork quilt. Here’s how young couples negotiate them. Русский

In Georgia, labour exploitation still pays

In striving for a “business-friendly environment”, the Georgian government is further eroding labour rights. Workers have taken to the streets in response.

The decorative deputies of the North Caucasus

As a recent scandal in the North Caucasus shows, there are jobs for the boys at all levels of Russia’s power vertical. Русский

Северный Кавказ: декоративные депутаты

На Северном Кавказе депутаты - это декорация. На местах в своих интересах работают князьки – клановые наместники глав республик. Это противоречит Конституции, но за тех, кто пытается выступать в защиту закона, не вступается и ФСБ.

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