INTERVIEW: Michal Simecka, Progressive Slovakia leader

Robert Anderson in Bratislava, Albin Sybera in Bratislava September 24, 2023

Liberal leader says populist rival Robert Fico would become Hungarian strongman Viktor Orban's partner in pushing Russian interests inside the EU.

Ukraine can’t join the EU until the Common Agricultural Policy is reformed

Ben Aris in Berlin September 23, 2023

On December 16 the European Council starts negotiations with Kyiv to join the EU. But while no one expects the process to go quickly, Ukraine cannot join at all unless the EU first reforms its Common Agricultural Policy.

Ukraine’s anti-corruption agency NABU drifting into the president’s orbit

bne IntelliNews September 23, 2023

Under the leadership of Semen Kryvonos, the newly appointed head of Ukraine's National Anti-Corruption Bureau (NABU), concerns grow about the bureau's independence, as it appears to be falling under the influence of the president’s office.

The fall of Nagorno-Karabakh

Neil Hauer in Yerevan September 23, 2023

While Azerbaijani officials have said that civilians will be allowed to stay there unharmed, few, if any, of the locals believe them.

PROFILE: Michal Simecka, leader of Progressive Slovakia

Robert Anderson in Bratislava September 22, 2023

There is a real hope that a late surge of support from the estimated one quarter of undecided voters could push Michal Simecka's Progressives into first place at the September 30 general election.

EU reaction to Azerbaijan attack on Nagorno-Karabakh muted by growing dependence on Azeri gas

bne IntelliNews September 21, 2023

The Western reaction to Azerbaijan’s attack on Nagorno-Karabakh this week has been muted by its growing dependence on Azeri gas supplies.

Kazakhstan: Investigation into ex-president’s nephew signals new turn in elite infighting

Almaz Kumenov for Eurasianet September 21, 2023

Analysts believe this case indicates that President Tokayev feels more confident in his authority.

Armenia's Pashinyan takes the blame for an absent Russia in the face of Azeri aggression

Zack Weiss in Tbilisi September 20, 2023

A weakened Armenian President Nikol Pashinyan is taking the blame for Russia’s absence and a weakened Armenia, leaving Yerevan vulnerable to Azerbaijan aggression.

From Donbas to Irpin: one Ukrainian’s journey rebuilding his homeland

Neil Hauer in Irpin September 20, 2023

Dance instructor and entrepreneur Alexey Ovchinnikov’s new studio is part of the revitalisation of the war-ravaged town of Irpin.

Russian oil price discount shrinking, sanction dodging widespread

Ben Aris in Berlin September 20, 2023

A recent study by the KSE Institute, led by senior economist Benjamin Hilgenstock, found that Russia is successfully avoiding oil sanctions and that the discounts it has to offer on its barrels of oil are tightening in comparison with Brent.

Onetime 'King of Europe' Tusk now fights to lead Poland

Wojciech Kosc in Warsaw September 15, 2023

The former premier and European Council president has restored faith in the Civic Platform party but the road to end PiS’ rule remains as steep as ever.

Ukraine winter preparations in final stage with a month to go

bne IntelliNews September 13, 2023

With a month to go before the heating season starts, Prime Minister of Ukraine Denys Shmyhal says preparations for the upcoming cold season are in their final stages and the country is almost ready for the cold season.

Tajikistan: Terrorism, slander, corruption claims swirl in latest sign of elite infighting

Eurasianet September 11, 2023

An old friend of the security services and police chiefs has been dragged into a tussle with the newly powerful general prosecutor.

bneGREEN: EV battery manufacturers plug into Southeast Europe

bne IntelliNews September 11, 2023

Southeast Europe is already home to some high-profile electro-mobility companies. Now, it's becoming a location for battery manufacturing too.

Russia and Iran: the Pariah Club

Ben Aris in Berlin September 8, 2023

The war in Ukraine has led to unprecedented levels of Russian-Iranian co-operation in the military, economic, and political spheres. The rise of anti-Western hardliners in both Moscow and Tehran means that this co-operation is likely to continue.

Far-reaching implications of Pope Francis’ visit to ‘island of religious freedom’ Mongolia

Antonio Graceffo in Ulaanbaatar September 6, 2023

In visiting the country’s tiny Catholic flock, the pontiff shone a light on the repression of the Church’s adherents in both China and Russia.

Ukrainian refugees become populist targets in Czechia

Albin Sybera September 6, 2023

Even though two thirds of refugees live below the poverty line and their financial support has just been cut, populists are whipping up tensions, particularly with the country's Roma minority.

Ukrainian teachers fight virtual war for children's hearts and minds

Neil Hauer in Zaporizhzhia September 5, 2023

School teachers are continuing their lessons over the internet to pupils in occupied Ukraine.

China's standard map scandal undermines BRICS+ unity ahead of key G20 summit

Ben Aris in Berlin September 5, 2023

It has been only a week since the BRICS summit in South Africa was supposed to unite the emerging markets against the Western hegemony, but a new "standard map" from China has caused a nasty row over borders ahead of a key G20 summit.

How France is losing Africa

Ben Aris in Berlin September 4, 2023

France is rapidly losing its influence in Africa as country after country rebel against their former colonial master and rally to the new BRICS bloc.