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· May, 2013

Stories about Russia from May, 2013

Cheat.org: What's Wrong with Russia's Online Petitions?

The Russian government-sponsored initiative to increase public participation in policy making through a petition process, was met with suspicion even before its launch in April. Now, almost two months later,...

The “Brave” Democrats of Russia's Growing Civil Society

Last week, when Surkov-ally Alexey Chesnakov quit United Russia and publicly criticized the party, few in the English-speaking world noticed, but the event—like Surkov's ouster weeks earlier—could just as easily...

After Probing Chemical Lake, Eco-Blogger Attacked in Russia

Environmental protection has become a dangerous area of public activism in Russia—at least where industrial pollution is concerned. This is because eco-activists often directly oppose regional business interests, who sometimes...

Russian Non-Profit “Mercy Island” Helps Stray Animals

In an April 2013 interview with Evgeny Voropai of Social Technologies Greenhouse, Tatiana Nikitina, president of the charity group Mercy Island, discussed why public organizations are interested in social media...

How Big Is Alexey Navalny's Army?

As Navalny's show-trial for lumber embezzlement continues, such questions are perhaps more important than ever. Here are some data-points which could be used to make a rough approximation:

Laughing at Russia's Eurovision Shooting Spirit

Earlier today, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov commented on his country's fifth place finish in this year's Eurovision Song Contest. At a press conference, Lavrov denounced supposed voting irregularities, claiming...

Russian Sociology Under Assault

Science isn’t safe in Russia today. That, anyway, was Lev Gudkov’s message in a public statement today, announcing that prosecutors in Moscow contacted him five days ago, to issue an...

Moscow Soccer Fans Clash with Police

Tinker, Tailor, Compass, Wig: Russia's Amusing American Spy Scandal

Fogle's alleged letter (written in awkward if grammatically correct Russian) looked like "Nigerian spam run through Google translate".

In Wake of Brutal Murder, Questions About the Roots of Russian Homophobia

Are Russia's members of parliament, who have fostered a climate of homophobia over the past year, to blame for a man tortured to death by drunk hooligans in Volgograd?

Dirty Words Russian Girls Can’t Say on the Internet

Earlier this week, opposition figure Maria Baronova penned an open letter to writer and political dissident Eduard Limonov, wherein she dropped a sexual bombshell. Her text unabashedly refers to “masturbating...

Russia's State-Contracted Revolutionaries

When Vladislav Surkov left the government last week, it triggered an avalanche of speculation about what the loss of “the grey cardinal” means for Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev in particular...

RuNet Apprehensive over Surkov's Dismissal, End of Political Era

"Before there was trickery, now it has been replaced with criminal charges and prison sentences. Surkov, whatever you may think of him, is, first of all, a political aesthete, who...

Police Raid Navalny's HQ in Kirov

After Fatality, May 6 Displays Troubles & Resilience of Russian Protest Movement

The Russian opposition, it seems, can't catch a break. Sometimes, this is because the Kremlin's political technologists outmaneuver them. Other times, it is thanks to internal bickering. On May 6,...

RuNet Speculates on Protest Rally Size, Again

Every Russian opposition rally and march attracts wild online speculation about the numbers of the participants -- both by observers and the participants themselves.

From Russia with No Love…for Central Asia

Migrants from Central Asia and the Caucasus are the usual victims of racist sentiment in Russia. Aware of deepening anti-migrant feelings, many of Moscow's politicians promote right-wing policies. But there...

Absurdity Takes to the Streets in Russia

"A Monstration is a parody of a traditional demonstration, with absurd demands and slogans, where every participant says what they want."

The Kremlin Defeated the Russian Opposition?

“Do you really have the feeling that the old system collapsed after the December 2011 protests? The system defeated the opposition. It’s a fact.” Vladislav Surkov delivered this line earlier...

Tensions Grow at Moldova-Transnistria Security Zone

Tensions increased during the night of April 26-27 in the Security Zone of the Republic of Moldova, as the Transnistrian authorities unilaterally installed two checkpoints between the village of Varniţa...

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