Learning Azerbaijani is becoming more and more popular in Armenia. While the two countries remain in a near-war-like state, some emphasise the strategic importance of ‘know thy enemy’, while others seek a better understanding of their disconnected neighbours.
Twelve people were injured, including three policemen, and nine were detained and taken to the police station as a result of a mass brawl in the village of Leninaul in the Kazbekovsky District of Daghestan on 25 June. The mundane dispute nearly turned into an ethnic conflict between Daghestanis and Chechens. About 500 Ingush and Chechens from Grozny left for Daghestan. While provocateurs in social networks were fanning the flames, high-ranking officials from both republics attempted to resolve the conflict.
An initiative from Azerbaijan’s government to grant free flats to journalists has sparked debate in local media circles. Journalists in favour hail it as a form of wealth redistribution, while others see it as yet another attempt to smother media freedom in the country.
Armenia’s apricot farmers have had a bountiful season, but are unable to enjoy the fruits of their labour. They say that Spayka, an exporter with alleged connections to the president’s son-in-law, has captured the market — and is abusing its misbegotten power.
A year and a half after Abkhazia banned abortion, reportedly to increase the number of births, reports of women’s deaths and pregnancy complications have became more numerous, while the number of babies being born has not increased. Local activists have called on parliament to change the law, which they say discriminates against women.
Local residents and deputies of the Nogay District Assembly in Daghestan have successfully blocked the appointment from above of Baymagomed Yarlykapov as District Head. But this small victory for protesters may not address the root cause of the district — and republic’s — discontent. [Read more…]
The Georgian Government is committed to fully exploiting the country’s hydropower potential. Collective mobilisation against mass construction of hydropower plants has began to emerge, but activists say they are met with exclusion and repression. [Read more…]
On 2 April 2016, the Four-Day War began, and Azerbaijani troops moved into the village of Talish in Nagorno-Karabakh. One year on, only a couple of dozen men remain in Talish — their wives and children waiting to return and rebuild their lives.
GeoProMining is an international precious metals mining company. It was founded by Russian businessman Siman Povarenkin, with a local partner in Georgia, Koba Nakopia. The company has damaged environments in Georgia, Armenia, and Russia while mining gold and other precious metals.
Thanks to close contacts in local governments, the gold mining enterprise and its subsidiaries have never been seriously penalised. Local governments either don’t investigate major environmental pollution incidents or they don’t publish the investigation results.
The media in Kabardino-Balkaria parrots an extremely rosy picture of the republic. However, journalists and activists almost all admit privately — that with an eye towards the Kremlin (and Kadyrov’s growing army next door in Chechnya) — freedom of speech has been utterly decimated, and controversial topics go completely unreported.