post-Soviet

Tirana's artist mayor turns crumbling capital into painters' canvas

What to do with a city full of grim, high-rise flats? That was the dilemma that - like many post-Soviet cities - the Albanian capital of Tirana was faced with after the fall of the Iron Curtain. Its inhabitants seem to have found the answer: elect an artist as mayor. Read more and see the transformation in photos...

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Lithuania’s new Disneyland: a Soviet concentration camp

Have you ever wanted to put yourself in the place of someone detained by KGB officers during Soviet times? Well now you can. While Soviet museums and parks across Central and Eastern Europe have proved popular over the past decade, tourists are now seeking firsthand experiences of life behind the Iron Curtain at Lithuania's newest Soviet attraction. Read more...

Latvia's Soviet ghost town auctioned off to Russian pig farmers

A ghost town in Latvia that hosted giant Soviet radars has been auctioned off to a mysterious Russian investor for more than ten times the asking price. The buyer? A company registered as pig farmers at an address in Samara Oblast, over 2,000 kilometres away. Read more...

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Two years in jail for donkey video

Two Azerbaijani bloggers were sentenced to jail on Wednesday. Charged with "hooliganism", the pair were arrested shortly after posting a satirical video online which mocked the government's alleged purchase of a dozen - suspiciously priced - 41,000 dollar donkeys from Germany. Read more and watch the video...

The cinema that turned into a church

In an attempt to do away with religion, Soviet Russia turned its churches into swimming pools, warehouses and sobering-up clinics. Now, the trend is being reversed - schools, cinemas and hotels are being transformed into churches by Orthodox parishioners. Read more and see the photos...

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The death of the Aral Sea

Once one of the world's largest inland seas and home to thousands of species, in under 20 years the Aral Sea has shrunk to ten percent of its original size and is so salty that barely any life form remains. The Russians were taught to believe that the sea was an "error of nature" and therefore pointless, but as our Observer points out, the real catastrophe was man-made. Read more...

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EU festivities face Polish wrath

This video clip, released by the EU to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the fall of the iron curtain, has prompted a furious response from Poland. Read more...

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Stalin is a national treasure according to modern Russians

Russian TV watchers have just finished voting for their most treasured countryman. The icon to take the crown was medieval prince Alexander Nevsky. But that's not what everyone's talking about. It's the unlikely figure looming at number three that's stolen the show. Read more...

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Homegrown neo-Nazis in the Jewish state

A group of Neo-Nazis who filmed themselves committing violent acts in the heart of the Jewish state have been condemned to jail. Read more and see the video...

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Kundera's fall from grace

The Czech press is dismayed bu Milan Kundera after a document, dug out of Czechoslovakian police (SNB) archives, reveals that the esteemed writer was an informant in the 1950s. Read more...

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