Russia

Russian politician denies ‘eating evidence’ in jailed opposition leader’s trial

 
After spending weeks in jail, Sergei Udaltsov, leader of Russia’s radical Left Front organisation, remains in custody after a Moscow court postponed an appeals hearing for his release on Tuesday. Allegedly arrested on trumped-up charges, the Russian authorities are apparently grasping at reasons to keep Udaltsov in jail – even going so far as to accuse our Observer, an opposition politician and Udaltsov supporter, of having eaten a key piece of evidence. Read more…
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Protests in Russia: ‘I haven’t seen this since the 90s’

 
Russian protesters have called for a third day of mass demonstrations to be held on Saturday, as the anger over widespread allegations of fraud during this weekend’s parliamentary elections refuses to die down. According to our Observers, who participated in protests in the capital Moscow, it is the first time Russia has seen this kind of public outcry in years.  Read more...

Election fraud in Russia caught on video: ballot-stuffing, erasable ink and more

 
Opposition leaders called for a second round of mass demonstrations in Moscow on Tuesday, to protest against last weekend’s parliamentary elections amid widespread claims of irregularities favouring Vladimir Putin’s United Russia party. Our Observer on the ground, who participated in Sunday’s election as an observer for an opposition party, described what he witnessed once the polls closed and counting began. Read more…
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Hit, kicked and bruised: beatings at Russian women’s prison caught on video

 
A Russian prison official has been placed in detention for at least two months after footage of him punching, kicking and pulling the hair of female inmates was leaked online, sparking outrage and calling the country’s penal system into question. Watch the videos…
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Moscow builds its very first bicycle lane – or is it an obstacle course?

 
Moscow, home to 11.5 million people, recently got its very first bicycle lane. It was proudly inaugurated with much fanfare by city officials this summer to the great excitement of the city’s cyclists. However, their joy was slightly diminished when they realised that it was more like an obstacle course than a way for cyclists to more easily navigate city traffic. Read more and see the photos...

Death by bullying: extreme hazing in Russia's army

 
In August alone, three Russian soldiers committed suicide. According to their families and soldiers’ rights defence groups, these deaths were caused by “dedovshchina,” an extremely brutal form of hazing dating back to the Soviet era which remains common today. Our Observer, a 25-year-old man currently doing his military service, tells us about his harrowing experience. Read more...
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Russian anarchists fight capitalism with fire

 
In Russia, anarchists are increasingly attacking symbols of capitalism and authority by setting them on fire. These arsonists, linked through a secretive network, say they are ready to do whatever it takes to get their message out. We talked to one of them. Read more…
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‘Sexist and ridiculous’: feminists blast Putin’s big-breasted ‘army’

 
You won’t find guns or tanks in Putin’s Army, but you may see a fair amount of bare female flesh. This new Russian activist group is composed exclusively of young women using their looks to lobby for Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s re-election as president. The initiative has many other Russian women fuming. Read more…
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