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Is the anti-corruption agenda all that it’s cracked up to be?

The fight against corruption is often sold as the pill to end all postsocialist ills. Activists and researchers in Poland, Russia and Ukraine give their views on why we need to challenge it. 

The Russian authorities’ clampdown on activism and freedom of assembly continues

Use of force against a police officer, insulting religious believers' feelings, taking a selfie with an Easter egg — these are just some of the pretexts used against active citizens in Russia. Русский

Fighting back, in the back of beyond

Across Russia, active citizens are fighting for their neighbourhoods, livelihoods and against systemic corruption. The moment when these agendas meet will be an important one.

Bolotnaya 2.0?

In Russia, fresh criminal investigations into anti-corruption protests are designed to intimidate activists and protesters from taking further action. Русский

Russifying revolutionary art at the Royal Academy

This year, many institutions are marking 100 years of the Russian Revolution. A recent exhibition about Russia's revolutionary art reminds us of the academy's cultural blindspots.  

Dagestan's long-distance truckers are fighting for their rights

Hundreds of truck drivers in Dagestan have joined Russia’s countrywide strike against additional taxation. I spoke to them to find out their demands. Русский

“Young people in Russia today don’t have it easy”

After young people and students took to the streets, education is firmly on the agenda in Russia. An interview with Mikhail Sokolov on the threats to academic freedom and whether one of Russia's leading universities will survive. Русский

Putin's nation-building project offers reconciliation without truth

The Kremlin has resorted to obfuscating the past in the name of national reconciliation.

In St Petersburg, long-distance truck drivers are holding out for victory

Russia’s long-distance truck drivers have started a nationwide strike. But without support from political parties or other groups, how far can they go? Русский

Seven moments from the life of Almazbek Atambayev

The rise of Kyrgyzstan’s increasingly authoritarian president is an unusual story. Fergana News recalls some of its stranger chapters.

In Russia, 26 March continues

Two weeks after Russia’s anti-corruption protests, activists and participants are still being tried, arrested and intimidated across the country. Русский

For Moldova’s journalists, surveillance is the new norm

Digital and personal surveillance has become a fact of life for Moldova’s journalists. My story is the tip of the iceberg. Русский

St Petersburg: in search of solidarity

Recent months have seen Petersburg residents mobilise themselves to control what happens in their town. This week’s bomb attack reminds us that the city’s solidarity is hard-fought. Русский

“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

Anti-LGBT violence in Chechnya: when filing “official complaints” isn’t an option

The Chechen authorities are conducting a vicious operation against men suspected of being gay. The Kremlin should not only condemn these actions, but the culture of impunity that accompanies them. 

Ukraine: sex work in times of war

Ukraine’s military conflict and economic crisis are affecting the country’s sex workers. Read how these women’s lives and concerns are changing, in their own words. 

Don't call him Dima: Russia’s anti-corruption protesters face repression

Last Sunday's protests and a nationwide truckers' strike have led to detentions and trials across Russia. Read about them here. Русский

How to make an entire generation apolitical: an interview with Belarusian anarchist Mikola Dedok

In Belarus, anarchists have made a name for themselves during the recent wave of protests which have rocked the country. We speak to Mikola Dedok, an anarchist activist, on apathy, politicisation and the failures of opposition politics. Русский

Russia’s prison service is keeping its abuses under lock and key

Despite signs of early change, the cover-up of torture inside Russia’s prison service demands reform. Русский

Down and out in Crimea

Three years after Russia’s annexation of Crimea, social inequality is on the rise across the peninsula – and it seems that honest work doesn’t pay. Русский

“Inciters, deceivers, slaves”: Kyrgyzstan’s president takes aim at the press

New moves against opposition politicians and the press are meant to scare the last bastion of Kyrgyzstan’s civil society into submission. Русский

 

Russia's latest protests are no child’s play

They’ve been dismissed as a “teenage rebellion”, but the protests that shook Russia recently reveal how the country’s youth is slipping through the state’s fingers. Русский

Running for Tsar: Armenia’s Gagik Tsarukyan

One of Armenia’s most colourful public figures has returned to politics in time for parliamentary elections. What does the oligarch Gagik Tsarukyan stand for – apart from himself? на русском языке

River defenders gather forces in Georgia

This week, activists from across the world are meeting in Tbilisi to share their experiences of resisting hydropower projects and the money that supports them. 

The European University at St Petersburg: no license to learn?

The European University at St Petersburg has had its education license revoked. What’s next for one of Russia’s top higher education institutions? Русский

We are not parasites: understanding Belarus’s protests

Thousands have taken to the streets across Belarus to protest a law penalising the unemployed. But there’s every chance that the Lukashenka government is playing the long game.

Meet the women at the centre of Ukraine’s resurgent HIV epidemic

Living with HIV in Ukraine is fraught with stigma and discrimination. It’s even harder if you’re a woman.

Behind Azerbaijan’s facades

In Azerbaijan, power is strictly a family business. Русский

Death by Crimea

As long as Russia holds on to the Ukrainian peninsula, it will not and cannot change for the better. Русский

 

The Kremlin’s so-called “partners”

For the Kremlin’s friends in the west, the reality of Russia’s actions is finally sinking in.

Hatching discontent in Ukraine

In Ukraine, big agriculture uses unscrupulous methods to manufacture consensus for expansion and marginalise local communities — often with the support of international donors.

Bolotnaya: that spark in their eyes

For many people, the Moscow protests of 2012 were about falling in love – with the promise of freedom, and with each other. But how do you go on living when instead of the government, the barricades fall, and your hopes along with them? Русский

Who will make Russia “great again”?

Russia’s legal-rational establishment has yet to emerge. But the rise of Alexei Navalny demonstrates that when it does, it will inevitably be nationalist.

 

Is election observing in Central Asia a lost cause?

Until Central Asia’s autocracies take their numerous commitments to democracy seriously, election observers can’t do their jobs. What can be done? Русский

 

Rostov’s Red Army Faction

Combating terrorism is one of the main responsibilities of a modern state, but in non-democratic states it can take strange forms. Русский

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