Eastern Europe


    • Russia deploys fighter jets to Crimea

      Russia deploys fighter jets to Crimea

      Russia’s Ministry of Defence announced on Monday it was deploying more than 10 Sukhoi SU-27 and SU-30 fighter jets to Crimea. The move follows Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov's allegation Ukraine was preparing “a provocation” near Crimea before the end of the year, news wires reported.

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    • Ukraine establishes independent Orthodox church

      Ukraine establishes independent Orthodox church

      Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has announced the creation of an independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church, marking a historic split from Russia. The newly formed community combines the current Kiev Patriarchate, the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church (UAOC) and willing bishops from the Moscow Patriarchate and is expected to receive independence from the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, the Istanbul-based institution considered the so-called "first among equals" of leaders of the world's Orthodox Churches.

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    • Georgia elects its first woman president

      Georgia elects its first woman president

      Preliminary results show former Foreign Minister Salome Zurabishvili defeated Grigol Vashadze by 59.5% to 40.5% in Wednesday’s presidential runoff, Georgia’s Central Election Commission reported on its website. Notably, now she will become the first woman to be elected as president in any former Soviet republic outside the Baltic states. 

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    • Ukraine under martial law from 28 November

      Ukraine under martial law from 28 November

      Ukrainian parliament backed later on Monday President Petro Poroshenko's motion to impose martial law in the wake of the incident near Russia-occupied Crimea when Russian border guards opened fire on three Ukrainian navy vessels before seizing the ships and their crews. The martial law, which starts on 28 November, will include a partial mobilisation and strengthening of the country's air defence. Poroshenko revised his original proposal from a 60-day period of martial law to just 30 days.

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    • Russia and Ukraine involved in Black Sea naval standoff

      Russia and Ukraine involved in Black Sea naval standoff

      Russia and Ukraine accused each other of breaking international law on Sunday after Russian border guards tried and failed to stop two Ukrainian armored artillery vessels circumnavigating Crimea en route to a Ukrainian port. The incident in the Black Sea between both countries, whose relations remain acutely strained after Moscow’s 2014 annexation of Crimea and its backing for a pro-Russian insurgency in eastern Ukraine, reflects rising tensions between Moscow and Kiev around the Sea of Azov which both countries have the right to use.

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    • Ex-foreign ministers contest Georgian presidency

      Ex-foreign ministers contest Georgian presidency

      Georgia's presidential election, held on Sunday, will go to a runoff after no single candidate won outright in the first round of voting, news wires reported. According the country's Central Election Commission (CEC), the French-born former diplomat Salome Zurabishvili had secured 38.7% of the vote, while Grigol Vashadze, a former foreign minister, had won 37.7%.

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    • Georgia picks president today

      Georgia picks president today

      Georgians started to vote for a president on Sunday in an election with two former foreign ministers as the frontrunners, including a former French career diplomat who could become the first female leader of an ex-Soviet state outside the Baltics. Over 3,600 polling stations opened at 08:00 local time and the voting is due to last until 20:00. Results are expected late on Sunday. Should the vote go to a runoff, a second round will be held before December 1.

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    • Russia to target Europe if its hosts US nuclear missiles

      Russia to target Europe if its hosts US nuclear missiles

      Russian President Vladimir Putin warned that Moscow would be forced to target any European country in case it agrees on hosting US nuclear missiles after Washington’s withdrawal from the decades-old arms control treaty. Speaking at a news conference after holding talks with Italian PM Giuseppe Conte in Moscow, Putin also stressed he wanted to discuss US plans to pull out of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty with US President Donald Trump, when the two leaders meet in Paris on 11 November.

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