Czech Archbishop Duka defends Russian soldiers over rape of Ukrainian women

bne IntelliNews April 29, 2022

Conservative head of Czech Catholic church causes outrage by asking public not to condemn Russian soldiers for atrocities they commit on Ukrainian women.

UN chief visits Kyiv

bne intellinews April 29, 2022

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is in Ukraine to meet President Zelenskiy. He started his visit by going to towns near Kyiv which saw particularly heavy fighting and were the sites of alleged atrocities by Russian soldiers.

White House asks Congress for $33bn in Ukraine aid, German parliament votes to send heavy weapons

bne IntelliNews April 29, 2022

US President Joe Biden asked Congress on April 28 to approve a massive $33bn for new funding for Ukraine, two thirds of which will be spent on weapons. On the same day lawmakers in Germany voted overwhelmingly to send Ukraine heavy weapons.

Montenegro’s parliament approves new minority government led by Abazovic

bne IntelliNews April 28, 2022

Montenegro’s parliament approved the new government led by Dritan Abazovic, whose main goal is to unblock the country’s EU-related reforms.

Kyrgyzstan alarmed by Tajikistan’s reported purchase of Bayraktar drones

Kamila Ibragimova for Eurasianet April 28, 2022

Kyrgyzstan had hoped its own acquisition of the same drones last year would give it a strategic edge over Tajikistan.

Visegrad Group needs to 're-invent itself", says Rupnik

Robert Anderson in Prague April 28, 2022

The Visegrad Group of four Central European countries is in “deep freeze” because of the Hungarian-Polish split over the Ukraine war, says Sciences Po professor.

Moldova rejects Ukraine’s offer to seize Transnistria

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest April 28, 2022

Series of attacks in Russia-backed separatist region raised fears that Transnistria — and Moldova — could be dragged into the war in neighbouring Ukraine.

EC triggers rule of law conditionality mechanism against Hungary

bne IntelliNews April 28, 2022

Commission cites Hungary's systemic irregularities and deficiencies in the management of EU funds and its lack of anti-graft measures.

Gazprombank executive signs up to fight for Ukraine, says fellow top executives were murdered

Theo Normanton April 28, 2022

Ukrainian-born vice president of Gazprombank Igor Volobuev says that he has returned to his homeland to take up arms against the Russian military. He also suggested that a former colleague from Gazprombank did not commit suicide, but was murdered.

Renault hands over AvtoVaz to Kremlin for one ruble

bne IntelliNews April 28, 2022

French carmaker Renault will transfer its 68% stake in Russia’s largest carmaker AvtoVaz to the state for a symbolic price one ruble and a five-year option to get the asset back.

Emerging Europe growth to fall to an average of 3% this year, says wiiw

bne IntelliNews April 28, 2022

Russian GDP forecast to fall by 9-15% this year, while Ukraine's economy could collapse by 38-45%.

Plasticine protesters appear in Russian cities

Social media correspondent Dominic Culverwell April 28, 2022

Russian art activists continue to protest against the invasion of Ukraine by placing small figures holding anti-war placards across the country.

Poland and Germany near agreement on cooperation to ditch Russian oil

bne IntelliNews April 28, 2022

A deal with Poland could help allow Germany to agree to EU sanctions on Russian oil exports, leaving Hungary isolated as the main opponent of tightening pressure on the Kremlin.

Russia to stop gas supplies to Poland

Wojciech Kosc in Poland April 27, 2022

Poland has already said it can go independent of Russian gas before the end of the year once the Baltic Pipe becomes operational.

Hungarian central bank maintains pace of monetary tightening

bne IntelliNews April 27, 2022

Monetary Council of the National Bank raises base rate by 100bp to 5.40%.

Ukrainian refugees may have boosted Poland’s population to almost 41.5mn

Wojciech Kosc in Warsaw April 27, 2022

Poland’s second largest city, Krakow, has seen population growth of 23%. The third and fourth largest cities, Lodz and Wroclaw, are now 13% and 29% bigger, respectively.

Romanian ports prepare to ship Ukrainian grain

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest April 27, 2022

Romanian Transport Minister Sorin Grindeanu says transporting Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea remains the cheapest solution, despite the rising costs of insuring ships due to the war and the mines in the Black Sea waters.

Dismay as Osman Kavala sentenced to life in Turkey after ‘sham trial’

bne IntelIiNews April 26, 2022

Conviction of philanthropist painted as conspirator by strongman Erdogan comes with Ankara likely set to be expelled from Europe’s top human rights body.

Damage to Russian economy will be long lasting, says EBRD economist

Robert Anderson in Prague April 26, 2022

Sanctions' most damaging impact will come from the blocking of flows of capital and knowledge, says Javorcik.

Shame and anger in Bulgaria as PM urges citizens to donate salaries to buy weapons for Ukraine

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia April 26, 2022

Kiril Petrov appeals to citizens to donate directly after failing to persuade his coalition partners to back military aid to Ukraine.