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Country News Digest Y


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Vol.5, Issue #1
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Contributors:
-Ani Chkhikvadze
-Risa Chubinsky
-James Brice Jordan
-Sarah Radomsky

09/01/14-09/05/14

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Editor: Eugene Imas

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President Margvelashvili
and NATO Secretary
General
Rasmussen
met Wednesday to discuss plans for future Georgian
integration into NATO. Although it was agreed in June
2014 that a Membership Action Plan would not be
extended to Georgia at the September Wales summit,
Rasmussen stated that NATO would continue to offer
a substantial package that will bring Georgia closer to
NATO, including the establishment of a defense capacity
initiative and a training facility.

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RFE/RL

On
Monday, Turkish
authorities arrested nearly
40 police officers, including
a former senior police official, in raids throughout Turkey.
This instance marks the fourth such raid since July in
which government forces cracked down on a perceived
parallel state inside the Turkish security forces, which
President Erdogan believes to be plotting a coup.

Turkey

The Guardian

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World Tribune

Belarus

BBC

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RFE/RL

Italian Foreign Minister


and EU Foreign Affairs
chief Mogherini met with several EU foreign affairs
ministers in Chisinau on Monday to encourage growing
Moldovan ties to the EU. Moldova signed an Association
Agreement with the EU in June, which prompted Russian
import restrictions on Moldovan products. Mogherini
praised Moldova for both choosing the path going
towards the West while also maintaining good relations
with the East.
Articles:
RFE/RL
EurActiv
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Moldova

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US Dept. of State

Belarussian boy might be


a subject to the fine as he
dared President Alexander
Lukashenko to an Ice Bucket Challenge. Dmity Dayneko
who took part in famous online charity activity, uploaded
a video pouring water with ice-cubes over himself and
passed the challenge to the president of the country. He
later was asked to pay a visit to the Youth Affairs office
where police requested that unless he took the video down,
he would be fined.

Armenian
President
Sarkisian and Azerbaijani
President Aliyev met in
Wales on Thursday to discuss tensions in the NagornoKarabakh region. The two leaders held talks first with
French President Hollande, then with US Secretary of
State Kerry. Sarkisian stated that the NATO summit
declaration should not favor Azerbaijani interests, but
should instead adhere to the language of the OSCE
Minsk Group, which has been mediating the situation.

Armenia

Civil.ge

Ukraine

DFWatch

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Friday morning, a cease-fire


was negotiated between the
Ukrainian government and
pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine. The cease-fire
went into effect at 6:00 PM local time, although continued
fighting in the city of Mariupol has led to concerns over the
effectiveness of the agreement. The terms of the agreement
encompassed fourteen points, including an exchange of
hostages. Ukrainian President Poroshenko and Russian
President Putin had discussed a similar arrangement on
Wednesday.
Articles: Washington Post
New York Times
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Georgia

World Bulletin

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RFE/RL

Russia

French President Hollande


announced Wednesday that
he would delay delivery of
the first of two French-built Mistral warships to Russia due
to the political situation in Ukraine. The $1.6 billion deal
was signed in 2011, and 400 Russian sailors had already
arrived in Saint-Nazare, France in June to begin training
to use the ships. Russian officials remain confident that the
deal will be fulfilled according to the contractual terms.
Articles: Voice of America
New York Times
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Turkish former primeminister and now president


Erdogan on Wednesday
expressed his support
towards Azerbaijan in Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. On
his meeting with president Aliyev, he called Azerbaijan
and Turkey: two nations from one stem. Talking about
Nagorno Karabakh issues Edrogan added: if the conflict
between Azerbaijan and Armenia [over Karabakh] is
resolved, then the problems between Turkey and Armenia
will also be solved.

Azerbaijan

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Country News Digest

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After
meeting
with
Gazprom head Aleksei
Miller, President Atambaev
announced last week that Gazprom would dramatically
reduce gas rates to Kyrgyzstan starting October 1.
Atambaev also announced that Gazprom will build a
pipeline connecting north and south Kyrgyzstan by next
spring, as well as explore for gas deposits at the Mayli Suu
4 and Kokart sites.
Articles: Central Asia Times
RFE/RL
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On Thursday, Taliban
militants
attacked
a
government compound in
Ghazni. Approximately nineteen militants stormed the
intelligence and police buildings while two truck bombs
detonated near the entrance. Reports on the number of
casualties range, although multiple state that all of the
attackers were killed, along with eight police officers and
two civilians. More than 150 people were injured.
Los Angeles Times Articles:
BBC
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Kazakh authorities are


alarmed as container that
was carrying radioactive
substance disappeared in western part of the country.
The container with caesium 137 fell of the vehicle
while transportation. Caesium 137 - commonly used
for military and medical reasons, can cause severe
burns or death if exposed. Authorities have warned
population not to open the container if they find it.

Negotiations
between
Iranian and American
officials regarding Irans
nuclear program have resumed, with the negotiation
teams meeting in Geneva on September 4 and 5. This is
the first meeting since the deadline for a nuclear deal was
extended from July 20 to November 24. These bilateral
negotiations will be followed by a P5+1 negotiation round
on September 18 in New York, the first round since the
extension.

ShanghaiDaily

The
government
of
Uzbekistan has restarted
a country-wide program
aimed at luring around 2.5 million migrant workers
home from Russia. The program the campaign of which
was recently refocused on the Samarkand area, includes
directives from Prime Minister Mirziev for providing
stable local jobs. Authorities have also been accused
of punishing families of migrant workers with fines or
pressure from mahalla authorities.
Articles:
Uz News
Ferghana.ru
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Uzbekistan

In a visit to Ashgabat last


week, Chinese Vice Premier
Zhang Gaoli reiterated
Chinas interest in deepening economic cooperation
with Turkmenistan and suggested that Turkmenistan
and China develop joint infrastructure projects. The past
year has seen increased cooperation between China and
Turkmenistan, including an exchange of presidential
visits and the signing of cooperation agreements in a
variety of areas.

Turkmenistan

GCR

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Xinhuanet

Russian President Vladimir


Putin concluded a brief trip
to Mongolia on September
3, meeting with Mongolian President Elbegdorj. President
Putin remarked that he was disappointed by decreasing
trade between Russia and Mongolia, and signed a series of
bilateral agreements aimed at reversing this trend. The two
presidents also marked the 75th anniversary of the Khalkyn
Gol battles in WWII between the USSR and Japan.

Mongolia

ITAR-TASS

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Info Mongolia

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Reuters

Trend.az

Tajikistan hosted a roundtable


seminar on the countrys
role in the formation and
development of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization
(SCO) on September 5. The meeting, organized by
Tajikistans Center for Strategic Studies and the countrys
ministry of foreign affairs, comes at the end of Tajikistans
year-long presidency of the SCO.

Tajikistan

Economic Times

The Guardian

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Al Jazeera

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Iran

Kazakhstan

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Afghanistan

Kyrgyzstan

Country News Digest

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IB Times

Polands central bank will


likely cut interest rates,
possibly as soon as next
month, if economic growth rates and price inflation
remain low. Governor Belka had previously defended the
current level of rates but has changed his stance, citing
increasing economic risks resulting from the RussianUkrainian conflict.

Poland

Articles: Wall Street Journal


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Hungary

Portfolio.hu

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Politics.hu

The Romanian Supreme


Defense Council met on
September 3 and agreed
to allow NATO to base combat aircraft on Romanian
territory, according to a statement made by Romanian
President Basescu. The force stationed in Romania would
include combat aircraft from NATO member states as
well as up to 200 troops and maintenance personnel.

Romania

Romanian-Insider

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Yahoo!

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Bloomberg

Hungarian Government
denies the allegation that
the new regulations are to
be imposed over the of alcohol retailing that limits selling
alcohol to government-approved shops. On Thursday, the
Government Information Center announced that there is
no legislative proposal for new regulations of any kind in
this regards. Previously, Socialists have accused the ruling
government of introducing a state monopoly and called it
a mad scheme.

Articles:

RT

C4ISRNET

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The Moscow Times Articles:
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The United Kingdom


announced on Thursday
that it will sell 123 armored
combat vehicles to Latvia to shore up Latvian military
capabilities. The two countries signed a letter of intent
in February 2014 but made plans to proceed with the
deal at the NATO summit in Wales this week. As British
Defense Secretary Michael Fallon stated, the deal is a
way of showing support for the Baltic states.

Latvia

Ria Novosti

Slovakia

Reuters

Articles:

Charter 97

On September 2, Slovakia
opened a pipeline to send
gas eastward to Ukraine as
part of the EUs response to Gazproms decision to cut gas
supplies to Kiev. The newly opened pipeline could meet
up to one-fifth of Ukraines demand and, combined with
reverse gas flows from Poland and Hungary, could supply
up to 25 billion cubic meters a year.

Lithuania
requested
46 million from the
European
Commission
as a compensation for the harms caused by Russian
food embargo. Lithuania is one the countries who were
largely effected by the Russian sanctions. Vilnius hopes
to receive at least part of the requested money in order to
recompense farmers as the prices of goods they produce
have collapsed.

Lithuania

Ceske Noviny

Articles:

Czech Republic

Czech
President
on
Wednesday while discussing
the Ukrainian Crisis said
that the conflict in Ukraine is a civil war. In his interview
with radio Frekvence 1, Milo Zeman added that it is
important to give a proper name to what is happening in
Ukraine. In Zemans words until now there is no prove that
Russian troops are involved in the conflict.

Estonias GDP growth


forecast lowers to 0.8
percent. Swedbank in its
Economic Outlook estimated that countries GDP will
grow by 0.8%, a one percentage point downgrade from
earlier prediction. Nordea Bank similarly cut growth
forecast for the country to 0.7%. The slowdown is
considered to be caused by worsened export opportunities
and recent geopolitical risks.
Baltic Business News Articles:
Baltic Course
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Estonia

Country News Digest

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Novinite

Sofia Globe

Albeu

The main Macedonian


opposition leader Zoran
Zaev was found guilty of
slandering Prime Minister Gruevski on Wednesday.
Zaev, head of the SDSM party, accused Gruevski, of
the VMRO-DPMNE party, of accepting a bribe for the
sale of a bank in 2004. The court has ordered Zaev to
pay 50,000 euro in damages to Gruevskis reputation.

Macedonia

Jurist

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Reuters UK

President of Kosovo

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Daily Times

On Wednesday, Slovenia
announced a hold on the
sale of Slovenias largest
telecoms provider Telekom Slovenije until the formation
of a new government later in September. Prime Minister
Cerar, who was elected last week after a snap election in
July, seeks a controlled privatization of Telekom Slovenije.

Slovenia

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Bloomberg

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Reuters

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Turkish Weekly

Kosovo

On August 29, President


Hussain
of
Pakistan
and President Jahjaga of
Kosovoa held the first-ever meeting between the heads
of state of their two countries. The meeting took place in
Ankara and the two leaders expressed their shared interest
in increasing cooperation between Pakistan and Kosovo.
President Hussain emphasized Pakistans support for
Kosovos membership in international organizations.

Articles:

Balkan Insight

In Serbia

Balkans.com

Articles:

After a year of negotiations,


Kosovos Deputy Prime
Minister Tahiri announced
on September 4 that Serbia and Kosovo had reached an
agreement to construct buildings at crossings along the
Serbia-Kosovo border. Three crossings are planned for
both the Serbian and Kosovar sides.

Serbia

Montenegro

Podgorica is negotiating a
deal with Qatari Diar that
guarantees
Montenegro
350 million investment. Qatari Diar is planning to invest
in Krtole, seaside town of Montenegro, in the Beyond
Horizon project that aims at turning the small town into
five star resort. However, Qatari Property Development
Company recently announced that after more than three
years of diligent planning and strong commitment to the
preparatory tasks, problems in acquiring land ownership
currently make this project unsustainable.

Top Channel

Articles:

Dalje

Minister of European
Integration Kladja Gjosha
submitted a proposal to
form the National Council for European Integration
in Albania. If approved, the Integration Council will be
formed by the end of September. Gjosha seeks to provide
an institutional framework for integration and to increase
cooperation between political parties, civil society and state
structures.

Albania

Turkish Weekly

Articles:

Croatia

Croatias Veterans Minister


Matic warned that Serbia,
Bosnia, and Montenegro
must divulge all information on disappeared Croats or
Zagreb will attempt to halt these countries attempts at EU
accession. He noted that 1,628 Croats are still missing from
the 1991-1995 war.

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The Bulgarian Interior


Ministry announced on
Wednesday that police
had seized fourteen tons of cannabis plants in the
district of Blagoevgrad. This brings the total amount of
cannabis seized in August and September to 30.2 tons,
a significant increase over the 22.4 tons seized in August
and September of last year.

Bulgaria

Country News Digest

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Country News Digest

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IBT

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Articles:

ABC News

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On September 1, Bosnian
Bosnia &
police detained 16 people
Herzegovina
alleged to have fought in
Syria for various jihadist groups. Around 200 police officers
were involved in the country-wide operation to stem the
flow of militants from Bosnia to Syria. Among those
arreseted was Bilal Bosnic, the Bosnian Salafi leader who
recently called on Bosnians to join the ranks of the Islamic
State, the radical Islamist group based in Syria and Iraq.

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The Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies is a U.S.
Department of Education Title VI-funded National Resource Center (NRC)
that strives to increase understanding and appreciation of the cultures and
challenges of the region stretching from Central Europe to the Pacific and
from the Baltic to the Mediterranean, Black and Caspian Seas

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Tel.: (202) 687-6080

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