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· August, 2019

Stories about Eastern & Central Europe from August, 2019

Contrary to Serbian government's claims, fact-checking initiative shows that journalists are far from being ‘all safe’

According to Istinomer's research, threats against individual journalists or editorial teams have become rather frequent over the past few months.

A study of Bulgarian far-right proto-militias dismantles the theory of the lone-wolf extremist

Research shows that the members of far-right extremist groups don’t necessarily believe the narratives promoted by their networks about “migrant invasion” or “islamization,” but consider hate speech as useful weapon.

Inspired by the 1989 ‘Baltic Way,’ Hong Kong protesters form human chain to demand freedom and democracy

"The light of freedom transcends time, place. Truly magnificent. #StandwithHongKong #BalticWay"

Moscow’s revolution will be memed, online and on canvas

An anonymous RuNet user has a found a creative way to criticise recent police violence in Moscow: photoshopping riot police into dozens of famous Russian and foreign artworks.

Videoblogging shaman walks to Moscow to ‘exorcise’ Putin

The 51-year old Yakut shaman calls his quest divinely ordained, insisting that Putin is a manifestation of dark forces which must be banished to save Russia from ruin.

In Prague, a bleeding monument reopens old wounds

The statue of Soviet Marshal Ivan Konev is often targeted by protestors on the anniversary of the 1968 invasion of Czechoslovakia, but this year the controversy is more heated than...

Remembering the 1968 Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia

Over a third of young Czechs are unable to make a link between the date of August 21, 1968 and the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia.

Here are some of Moldovan pop music's contributions to global meme culture

Few people remember this, but two popular memes known around the world are actually Moldovan in origin.

Cinema and new laws bring greater acceptance and visibility for Vietnamese transgenders 

LGBTQ+ identities are gaining legal and social recognition in Vietnam, as a documentary illustrates.

How Hungary-funded news sites helped a false story travel all the way from Slovenia through Greece to North Macedonia

Fact-checkers in North Macedonia have traced the original source of the bribe article and uncovered a complex trail of disinformation spanning at least four countries.

Who turned off Moscow’s internet during recent protests?

Evidence suggests that law enforcement agencies pressured mobile network operators to get part of the capital offline for the duration of the protests.

Dubious CIA plot theory by former Yugoslav army colonel finds a platform in Serbian media

“Fake news, fake media, fake journalists, fake analysts – they have flooded the Serbian media space.”

Three naïve questions about Belarus

Why do so few people know about Belarus?

How protesters are ‘deanonymising’ Russia's riot police

Activists are identifying the men behind the helmets, truncheons, and riot shields, and sharing their names, dates of birth, and links to their social media profiles.

Russia's LGBTQ+ community reels after murder of activist Yelena Grigoryeva

Police say Yelena Grigoryeva died in the course of a “domestic dispute” with her killer, but activists dispute that account; her name had recently appeared on a homophobic hit-list.

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