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A torture scandal makes Russia pay attention

Graphic footage of a prisoner being tortured has gripped the Russian public. But the lawyer who helped expose this torture needs state protection.

“We can’t let up”: theatre producer Anna Palenchuk on hunger-striking director Oleg Sentsov

Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov is on hunger strike in a prison in Russia’s Far North, but he’s still working on projects. RU

How conservative is the Russian regime?

Russia's intensifying neoliberal policies and the accompanying conservative rhetoric are clear evidence of the prolonged crisis facing the Putin regime. RU

Why Russian prison officers can torture with impunity

Russian courts continue to protect prison service officers accused of torturing and murdering inmates. RU

Hidden motivations: a brutal attack on a Russian Orthodox Church in Chechnya leaves questions unanswered

Allegations of a cover-up and improper qualification of an organised assault on an Orthodox Church in May this year have left space for conspiracy and intrigue.

Russia’s rising retirement age: six real stories

The Russian government’s move to raise the retirement age is encountering a lot of public discontent. Here, six Russian citizens tell us why they're against the reform. 

Can Russia’s opposition come together to fight the Kremlin’s pension reform?

While popular opinion is dead against the Russian government’s continued neoliberal line in social policy, opposition groups are competing for influence and electorate. RU

Abducted and illegally detained: the story of Pavlo Hryb, another Ukrainian prisoner of the Kremlin

After being abducted in Belarus, this Ukrainian citizen is facing terrorism charges in Russia.

Oleh Sentsov, Olexander Kolchenko and the meaning of solidarity

As filmmaker Oleh Sentsov enters Day 71 of his hunger strike to release all Ukrainian political prisoners, it’s worth thinking about how to expand the field of solidarity.

In Russia, a spoonful of propaganda helps the pension reform go down

This is how the Kremlin enacts an unpopular economic reform: deny responsibility, declare its inevitability and, yes, distract the public with a popular sporting event.


Could new business models make NGOs in the post-Soviet space more representative?

New business models are reshaping relations between the non-profit sector and wider society in post-Soviet countries.

How Russia’s security services target Crimean Tatars as “Islamic terrorists”

In the four years since the peninsula’s annexation, Russian security services have become well practiced at prosecuting Crimean Tatars on terrorism charges. RU

Desperately seeking socialism: why the Soviet Union's left-wing dissidents matter today

This new collection of essays seeks to rebalance our understanding of dissent in the late Soviet Union, drawing attention to democratic socialists from the 1950s into the 1980s. 

Global capitalism in Central Asia and competing economic imaginaries

For the US, Russia and China, Central Asia is a space of competing economic influences.

While everyone’s watching the football, the Russian government is raising the retirement age

Screen Shot 2018-06-15 at 15.13.27.pngThis move signals the end of the Russian federal state’s social commitments. RU

 


How this grassroots initiative in St Petersburg is making a World Cup for everyone

Major sporting events speak to people in the language of money, prestige and officialdom. But they can – and must – speak the language of culture, equality and solidarity. RU

The media who cried wolf: how Eurasia’s autocracies use media for crisis management

Eurasian governments’ use of journalism for crisis agenda management erodes trust in media.

The “safeguarding of morality” in Nizhny Novgorod is turning into an attack on the city’s Protestant community

In this World Cup host city, two students involved in local Protestant life are facing deportation after interference from the security services. RU

Trading sovereignty: how Ukraine's Pension Fund co-operates with the Russian authorities

By sending official information requests to the Russian authorities, Ukraine's Pension Fund de-facto recognises Russian jurisdiction in occupied Crimea. RU

Today, the forgotten fear of nuclear war is being reborn — and we have no popular movement against it

The movement for a nuclear free world during the late 1980s was made possible by many. But there are no successors today – and this is dangerous. RU

“In two years of picketing, 15 miners of working age have died”: how Rostov miners are fighting against all odds for their wages – and respect

For two years, workers at a bankrupt mining company in southern Russia attempting to recoup their outstanding wages. All this in a town with 100% unemployment. RU

The uncomfortable truth about post-Soviet comfort foods

What nourishes us also destroys us: this old saying holds true not only for food, but also politics.

Behind the wire: pride and paranoia in one of Russia’s closed towns

Thousands of Russian citizens live in “closed towns”. I visited one of them, Lesnoye, to find out how people live today. RU

“There is a direct threat to life”: Russian theatre manager Alexey Malobrodsky hospitalised after court hearing

Alexey Malobrodsky, who has been charged in a high-profile embezzlement case, has spent 10 months in pre-trial detention. He is now critically ill. I spoke to the doctor who has been treating Malobrodsky to find out more. RU

Moscow’s waste wars

The “rubbish riots” taking place in the Moscow area demonstrate Muscovites’ distrust of their regional government. RU

Meet Illuminator, the online project making space for discussing LGBT issues in Russia

The Illuminator project showcases the human targets of Russia’s conservative turn. RU

How the mother of a son with autism opened Karelia’s only studio for children with “special needs”

You can’t always find a place for your child in Russia’s education system. Sometimes, you need to make one yourself. RU

Life in the ashes: where now for survivors of the Rostov blaze?

Eight months on from a colossal fire in the centre of this southern Russian city, people affected by the fire are still looking for homes. RU

Russia haunts the western imagination

Krastev (1)_0.gifThe dividing line between authoritarian Russia and liberal democracies is growing ever thinner.

 

 

Russia’s Telegram ban is just the start of the battle over online anonymity

The ban on the popular social network and messaging app heralds a new era of pressure on online privacy, including for western internet companies. 

Why Ekaterinburg needs a directly elected mayor

One of Russia’s biggest cities is losing the right to elect its mayor. The position may be symbolic, but so is its loss. RU

 


“I love you with all my heart”: Russian Gulag historian Yuri Dmitriyev's final word in court

Despite repeated forensic analysis to the contrary, this Russian historian has spent 13 months in pre-trial detention on child pornography charges. 

In Russia, safety comes cheap

Every time Russia experiences a human catastrophe, the issue of the state’s responsibility is raised for a reason. 

Tortured and terrorised by the state, this Russian Muslim now faces deportation

The sudden revocation of a Russian-Palestinian citizen’s passport pulls at the thread of a murky and murderous investigation into Islamic State. RU

Russia’s presidential election: a decline in citizen rights

The re-election of Vladimir Putin has been preceded by a significant crackdown on freedom of assembly and rule of law.

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