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Blog Profile / Eastern Approaches


URL :http://www.economist.com/blogs/eastern-approaches
Filed Under:News / International Affairs
Posts on Regator:794
Posts / Week:4.3
Archived Since:April 18, 2011

Blog Post Archive

Cold self-interest

IT IS getting chilly in Kiev. During parliamentary elections on October 26th, as temperatures hit 7° Celsius, polling-station officials huddled in padded coats; one warmed her hand over an electric heater while handing out ballots with the other. Show More Summary

A bit of protest

VIKTOR ORBAN has finally hit a speed bump. The popular Hungarian prime minister had been on an unstoppable roll this year, winning a two-thirds majority in parliament and waving off foreign criticism of his increasingly illiberal policies. Show More Summary

Spy versus politician

LATELY the Czech Republic has become one of the weaker links in Europe's efforts to punish Russia for its interference in Ukraine. For months, critics, especially in Poland and the Baltic states, have accused Czech leaders of insufficient vigilance against Russian aggression. Show More Summary

A coalition for Kiev

THE clock starts now. Ukrainian voters opted for a Western-leaning parliament on October 26, casting off the last remnant of Viktor Yanukovych's reign after nearly a year of revolution and war. President Petro Poroshenko (pictured, holding a ballot) hailed the results as "democratic, reformist, pro-Ukrainian and pro-European". Show More Summary

After the Maidan

On the eve of parliamentary elections, a new political class is agitating for change. Only months ago, they were the revolutionaries

For your coal plants and ours

"FOR your freedom and ours" was a motto used by Polish rebels who fought in various uprisings against the Russian and Austro-Hungarian empires between 1830 and 1849, both in Poland and in Hungary and Italy. Their intent was to build a coalition of nationalist independence movements from various ethnicities. Show More Summary

No prize for Leyla Yunus

LEYLA YUNUS did not win the European Parliament's Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought this year—it went to Denis Mukwege, a Congolese gynecologist who has battled sexual violence against women—but she was one of the three finalists. Show More Summary

Donetsk for me, Lviv for you

Editor's Note: the original version of this post was based on statements by Radek Sikorski, the former Polish foreign minister, that an offer from Vladimir Putin to Donald Tusk to partition Ukraine had taken place. Mr Sikorski has since retracted those statements. Show More Summary

How to buy a (good) reputation

RHEINISCH-BERGISCHE VERLAGSGESELLSCHAFT (RBVG), a German publishing group, looks set to sell its 50% stake in Petit Press, the owner of Sme, a Slovak daily, to Penta, a powerful Central European financial group, via an intermediary. Petit Press also owns Slovakia’s only Hungarian language daily and its one English language newspaper. Show More Summary

A historic football victory

JUST as fears are mounting that Germany is heading for a recession, there is more bad news for Germans, who have become so used to success in recent years. Poland beat Germany, the current world champion, with a 2:0 victory in a qualification game for the European championship. Show More Summary

The Twelve Labours of Putin

VLADIMIR PUTIN turned 62 yesterday. According to the Kremlin press service, he marked his birthday deep in the Siberian taiga, a snow forest 200 miles from the nearest inhabited village. Back in Moscow, the capital was dotted by celebration. Show More Summary

How to deal with Harmony

HARMONY, a centrist party representing the Russian-speaking minority, won more votes than any other party in Latvia’s parliamentary elections on Saturday. Yet Harmony is far from victorious: the Saeima, Latvia’s parliament, has 100 seats and Harmony won 24, well short of a majority. Show More Summary

More instability

AFTER 18 months of political turbulence, which saw four governments fall, the last thing Bulgaria needed was another inconclusive election. And yet yesterday’s snap parliamentary poll produced a highly fragmented parliament that will do little to address the myriad problems of the European Union’s poorest member state. Show More Summary

Scoring solidarity

SHUNNED by members of other Czech football teams, who have refused to join them on the pitch, a Roma team is winning matches without having to score a single goal. In a show of support, Western diplomats played the Roma footballers on September 21st. Show More Summary

Bulgaria goes to the polls (again)

BULGARIA has changed governments four times in the last 18 months. On October 5 th Bulgarians will vote for another one. After nearly two years of political instability, which began after anti-poverty protests led to the resignationShow More Summary

Party hardy

POLAND'S outgoing foreign minister, Radek Sikorski, is a polyglot foreign-policy wonk who helped lead his country to its heftiest international presence in centuries. Grzegorz Schetyna is a party insider who has evinced little interest...Show More Summary

Precious few

POLES who risked their lives, and those of their families, to save Jews during the Holocaust are to be honoured with a monument (pictured above), to be constructed next year close to the new Museum of the History of Polish Jews. The design contest has just been launched, but the idea remains controversial. Show More Summary

Divide and digest

THE MEJLIS is the governing body of Crimea’s Tatars, the Muslim indigenous group who make up 12% of the region’s population. On September 16, its headquarters was surrounded and searched by dozens of Russian police. The raid came just...Show More Summary

Kafka on the Black Sea

TO NO one’s surprise, Crimea’s first elections since Russia annexed it this spring were won by United Russia, the party of Vladimir Putin. Official figures showed a healthy turnout of 60%, though this jumped rather oddly from 45% just two hours before polls closed. Show More Summary

Ukraine's unhappy ceasefire

A TENUOUS ceasefire took hold in Ukraine on September 5th, bringing a lull to fighting that has raged for nearly five months, killing over 2,500 people. The agreement, devised by Russia's Vladimir Putin and signed by Ukrainian and rebel representatives, held for little more than 24 hours since coming into force at 6pm local time. Show More Summary

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