US whistleblower Edward Snowden granted Russian citizenship

US authorities have for years wanted Mr Snowden returned to the US to face a criminal trial on espionage charges. As president, Donald Trump said he would “take a look” at pardoning Mr Snowden, but never did. Mr Snowden married his US partner Lindsay Mills in a courthouse in Moscow and the couple have a … Read more

Russians blocked from fleeing country by border guards

At Upper Lars in the Caucasus, at least 5,000 cars were lining up on Monday waiting to cross from Russia into Georgia, which has become one of the most popular routes of escape, according to Russian officials. Authorities on the Georgian side of the border said about 115,000 people and 37,000 cars crossed from Russia … Read more

What the US means when it says ‘catastrophic consequences’

“That could lose any support the action had in the UN and cede the international moral high ground. “Horizontal escalation is likely what they’ll be thinking. Make the Russians hurt elsewhere.” Such a response could see Russian military capabilities targeted in other regions of the world, for example in Syria, although this could risk spreading … Read more

Vladimir Putin sending newly-mobilised troops to their slaughter in Ukraine, says UK

V ladimir Putin is sending newly-mobilised troops to their slaughter in Ukraine with little training before they are deployed, British defence chiefs said on Monday. They warned these troops were likely to suffer a “high attrition rate” after being despatched to fight in Ukraine with “minimal relevant preparation”. They stressed that the Russian army faced … Read more

Vladimir Putin’s draft order is cause of Russian protests, officials admit

“Such excesses are absolutely unacceptable. And, I consider it absolutely right that they are triggering a sharp reaction in society,” said Valentina Matvienko, the speaker of the Federation Council, Russia’s upper house.  In an apparent attempt to deflect blame from the Kremlin, she said that governors of Russia’s 85 federal regions held “full responsibility” for … Read more

Russian National Guard ‘under strain’ to contain domestic protests against mobilisation

President Vladimir Putin announced a “partial mobilisation” bolster the armed forces as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues to falter earlier this week. Following the announcement, police have been dispersing demonstrations as thousands take to the streets to protest the call-up in several cities. In its latest intelligence update the MoD said more Russians could be … Read more

Why the fundamentals of war haven’t changed

The reality, of course, is that ‘tactical’ nuclear weapons do not exist – they are all strategic weapons – and, as such, come under the doctrine of Mutually Assured Destruction which ably governed the nuclear relationship between the superpowers during the Cold War. Putin won’t use a nuclear weapon, because he can’t be sure that … Read more

‘We take everything Putin does seriously – he is a man without any scruples’

“There are things we were taking out of service in the land domain that we were going to replace. But that was out of service [in the] middle of the 2020s, new replacement at the end of the 2020s. But there are certain risks we can’t really take any more. And that’s why I wrote … Read more

Putin not bluffing about nuclear weapons, top EU official says

E uropean leaders must take Vladimir Putin’s nuclear threats seriously, the EU’s foreign policy chief has warned. The Russian president said earlier this week that the nuclear-armed country will “certainly use all means available to us” to defend itself if its territory is threatened. In the wake of the Russian president’s threat, top EU diplomat, Josep Borrell, … Read more

Even Russia’s friends are getting upset over its war – POLITICO

NEW YORK — By the time Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov took the stage at the United Nations General Assembly this week, he and his country had already lost much of the audience. Throughout the annual gathering, world leader after world leader had expressed deep discomfort if not outright condemnation over Russia’s war in Ukraine. … Read more