PONARS Eurasia 06 Feb 2017
(Al Jazeera) In the past week, eastern Ukraine has suffered some of the heaviest fighting seen for a long time. Heavy artillery fire, a car bomb explosion and other ceasefire violations coincided with a phone call between US President Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin, his Russian counterpart. The two leaders discussed how to mend relations between the US and Russia. US senators and analysts are wondering whether the surge in fighting is the...
Mikhail Alexseev 06 Feb 2017
(PONARS Policy Memo) Signed in February 2015, the Minsk II ceasefire accord strengthened the original protocol provisions to grant partial sovereignty (“special status”) to the self-proclaimed, Russia-backed governments of the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics (DNR, LNR). Minsk II was inked at the same time that Russia’s regular, irregular, and mercenary forces exploited Kyiv’s compliance with Minsk I (September 2014) to surround and...
Mariya Omelicheva 31 Jan 2017
(PONARS Policy Memo) The topic of collective responses to terrorism, extremism, and transnational organized crime has long dominated discussions within the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) and Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). However, they routinely fail to address the multiple and complex ways that these activities intersect. This is a serious oversight. It makes collective security initiatives incapable of appropriately...
Arkady Moshes 30 Jan 2017
(PONARS Policy Memo) The Ukraine crisis became a major driver of the centrifugal relationship between Russia and the European Union, but it was not the starting point. The relationship had been essentially stagnant since the EU eastern enlargement at the beginning of the 2000s and Ukraine’s Orange revolution of 2004. Significant trade volumes could not compensate for the increasing geopolitical rivalry between Brussels and Moscow. The EU has...
PONARS Eurasia 30 Jan 2017
PONARS scholars and experts discuss the unprecedented presence of signs related to Russia at Saturday's Women's March throughout the United States and the world. While perhaps not surprising given the role played by Russia in the recent U.S. election, what effect is sustained public attention on Putin's relationship with Trump, and Russia's role in U.S. politics generally, likely to have on U.S.-Russian relations during the Trump administration...
Samuel Greene 30 Jan 2017
(Moscow-On-Thames blog) This has to stop now. The thousands of Americans who have come out to say a resounding ‘no’ to the Trump regime’s attack on hundreds of thousands of Muslim travelers do not need me to tell them that. The shame instilled in me by my government is truly surpassed only by the pride I feel in my compatriots. They seem intuitively to understand the nature of what we’re dealing with. What we’re dealing with is a regime – and I...
Ivan Kurilla 30 Jan 2017
(Al Jazeera) The inauguration of Donald J. Trump as the 45th President of the United States caused anger, anxiety, and demonstrations across the world. Few were the countries that celebrated the event. Unsurprisingly, Russia was one of those few (Israel being another). Both the elites and the ordinary people in Russia greeted the new US president, and even some in the political opposition saw the potential for positive developments under his...
PONARS Eurasia 27 Jan 2017
(CSM) Less than a year after a baby step forward to protect women from domestic violence, Russia is taking a bigger step backward. That's the view of women's rights advocates after the conservative-dominated State Duma, the lower house of parliament, overwhelmingly approved legislation that effectively decriminalizes "first offense" domestic violence, which is virtually certain to be adopted in its final reading Friday. The legal changes have...

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