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· April, 2011

Stories about Eastern & Central Europe from April, 2011

Serbia: Bloggers Discuss Plans to Erect Monument to Late Azeri President

  29 April 2011

One of Belgrade's nicest parks has recently got renovated - thanks, partially, to a donation of 2 million euros by the Azerbaijani government. The news that has been stirring controversy these past few weeks among Serbian bloggers is the condition for this gift: in return for the donation, a monument to Heydar Aliyev, the former president of Azerbaijan, will have to be erected in the park.

Russia: Photoblogger Defends His Constitutional Rights

RuNet Echo  28 April 2011

Popular photoblogger Ilya Varlamov continues to fight the common and unconstitutional ban on taking pictures in supermarkets. He posted a photo essay on his misadventures in Evropeysky, a large supermarket in Moscow, where he was prevented from taking photos.

Poland: Decrease of corruption

  28 April 2011

Michael Dembinski of W-wa Jeziorki notes that corruption in Poland continues to decrease in contrast to many other countries in Central and Eastern Europe, according to a recent article in The Economist.

Russia: New round in the TNK-BP row

RuNet Echo  28 April 2011

Streetwise Professor points to the parallel buyout of a partner in TNK-BP oil company by the Russian state oil company Rosneft and British Petroleum, with the abolition of a tax release, possibly resulting in decreased company value for the upcoming sale.

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Ukraine: Memories and Photos of Chernobyl in August 1986

RuNet Echo  28 April 2011

Aleksandr Strannik (LJ user av-strannik) arrived at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in mid-August of 1986, some four months after the April 26 blast at Reactor #4, to assist in the clean-up effort. Twenty-five years later, he is sharing some of his memories and photos from that time.

Russia: Kidnapping of Ivan Kaspersky

  27 April 2011

Julia Ioffe of The Moscow Diaries (now hosted on Forbes.com) writes about the kidnapping of Ivan Kaspersky, the 19-year-old son of the founders of the Russian computer security company Kaspersky Lab.

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Hungary: Hungarian-Roma Tensions Result in Clash in Gyöngyöspata

  27 April 2011

Last night, four people were injured in a clash between ethnic Hungarian members of the far-right group Véderő and members of the Roma community in the village of Gyöngyöspata. Contradictory accounts have been published in the Hungarian media about how exactly the fight started - and neither of the communities has taken responsibility for the clash.

Russia: Communist Party Leads Social Networks Activity Rating

RuNet Echo  27 April 2011

Nikolay Podosokorskiy analyzes [ru] activity of Russian political parties in the social networks. According to his brief research, ruling party “United Russia” is one of the closest and inactive parties online, while the most active is the Communist Party of Russia with more than 73,000 members at Vkontakte groups and...

Russia: Bloggers Discuss Best Practices of Crowd Funding

RuNet Echo  27 April 2011

Anton Nossik publishes [ru] 5 rules of successful crowd funding: 1.it should have an aim, 2. it should be transparent, 3. it should be tested before launch, 4. it should also facilitate non-financial help, 5. initiators should disclose their own efforts of improving the project they collect money for. Oleg Kozlovsky...

UK: The Royal Wedding's “Russian Connection”

  26 April 2011

Siberian Light writes about “a Russian connection” in the UK Royal Wedding story: “the George III Tiara, or the Russian Fringe Tiara” that Kate Middleton may wear for the April 29 ceremony. Also, “even if you’re in Russia, there’s no escape [from the Royal Wedding Mania], because you’ll be able...

Russia: Two Bloggers Sentenced for Extremism

RuNet Echo  26 April 2011

The Ufa city court in Bashkortostan sentenced bloggers Robert Zagreev and Ayrat Dilmikhametov to three and six years in prison for extremist activities “with the use of media,” Russian news agency Interfax reported. The bloggers pleaded not guilty.

Russia: Blogger Found Guilty in Harsh Criticizm of Bashkir Authorities

RuNet Echo  26 April 2011

Alexander Izmailov was found gulty in posting 649 comments online criticizing the authorities and not shying away from curse words, Ufimskij Zhurnal reported. Izmailov also frequently produced photo collages making fun of the President of Bashkortostan Murtaza Rakhimov who is notorious for limiting Internet freedom in the republic. Izmailov will...

Russia: Regions Reduce Digital Divide

RuNet Echo  26 April 2011

More than 90 percent of new users are not from Moscow or Saint-Petersburg, Yandex regional Internet development report says [ru]. Authors note a significant increase in Internet use nation-wide, 30-60 percent decrease in broadband prices, 10 percent raise of everyday user share. The report, quite optimistically forecasts that country's Internet...

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Hungary: For Gyöngyöspata's Roma, Evacuation – or an Easter Excursion?

  24 April 2011

First, there were the rumors of a right-wing paramilitary group's plans to hold training in the village of Gyöngyöspata. Then came the local mayor's resignation. Then on April 22, some 300 Roma women and children left the village. While media used the word 'evacuation' to describe what happened, government officials claimed the Roma had been taken on an Easter weekend holiday trip.

About our Eastern & Central Europe coverage

Filip Stojanovski is the Central Europe editor. Email him story ideas or volunteer to write.

Roman Shemakov is the Eastern Europe editor. Email him story ideas or volunteer to write.


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