Huge crowd turns out in Svetlana Tikhanovskaya’s support rally-concert in Minsk

bne IntelliNews July 30, 2020

A rally-concert to support Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, the only remaining candidate of the opposition in the Belarusian presidential race, attracted an enormous crowd of 63,000 people to the Friendship of Peoples park on the outskirts of Minsk.

Belarus’ Security taskforce links arrested Russian mercenaries to jailed opposition leader Sergei Tikhanovsky

bne IntelliNews July 30, 2020

Belarusian security services are linking the arrest of 33 Russian mercenaries to jailed opposition leader Sergei Tikhanovsky and have increased the severity of the charges against him as well as introducing more restrictions on opposition rallies.

Who are the 33 Russian mercenaries arrested in Minsk?

bne IntelliNews July 30, 2020

More details of the 33 Russian mercenaries arrested in Minsk emerged on July 30. Belarus has accused a Kremlin-linked military contractor of sending 200 fighters to destabilise the country ahead of August 9 presidential elections.

FPRI BMB UKRAINE: Ukraine is successfully implementing the Association Agreement with the EU

BMB Ukraine July 30, 2020

According to a monitoring report from the Ukrainian Center for European Policy, Ukraine has fulfilled 41.6% of the requirements outlined in its Association Agreement with the EU.

Moldova’s President Dodon wants Russian-style rewrite of constitution

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest July 30, 2020

Officials in Chisinau are studying the recent constitutional changes in Russia, which made it possible for President Vladimir Putin to stay in power until 2036.

Lukashenko holds urgent meeting of Belarus Security Council following arrest of Russian mercenaries

bne IntelliNews July 30, 2020

Belarus' president called an urgent meeting of the Security Council following the arrest of 33 Russian mercenaries in Minsk that may be a ruse to cancel opposition rallies or even postpone the presidential election.

Demonstrators block roads, set up protest camp in Bulgarian capital

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia July 29, 2020

The daily protests in Bulgaria reached their highest numbers yet on July 29, as protesters kept up the pressure on Boyko Borissov’s government to resign.

Turkish canned fish company accused of holding workers “captive” in production under quarantine operation

Akin Nazli in Belgrade July 29, 2020

Union says “closed circuit working system”, introduced after some employees tested positive for COVID-19, is unlawful and inhumane. Workforce told to live in company barracks.

North Macedonia’s old government partners set to renew coalition after snap elections

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje July 29, 2020

SDSM and DUI reportedly reached framework agreement for new government that could include rotating prime minister position.

Erdogan takes firm grip on social media

bne IntelIiNews July 29, 2020

Outrage as Turkish parliament passes “chilling” law that “will lead to identifying dissenters”.

Lukashenko says he had coronavirus, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya gives second TV speech

bne IntelliNews July 28, 2020

Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said that he had already had the coronavirus (COVID-19) but showed no symptoms during a televised meeting.

Czech brewing industry posted loss of almost €180mn during coronavirus lockdown

bne IntelliNews July 28, 2020

Higher sales of bottled beer failed to offset the losses from the closure of bars and restaurants.

Lukashenko intimidating protestors with visits to military bases, mass strikes planned for post-elections

bne IntelliNews July 28, 2020

Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko has visited his third military base in the last few weeks in a move that is clearly intended to intimidate the growing number of protestors who are attempting to oust him in the August 9 elections.

Lithuania’s Ignitis to invest €950mn in green energy in Baltics, Poland

Linas Jegelevicius in Vilnius July 28, 2020

Ignitis considering investments into wind, solar, hydro, waste and biomass powered plants. Company strategy calls for achieving carbon neutrality by 2050,

Turkey’s Armenia, Azerbaijan conflict role should be to “keep itself as far away as possible” says Armenian diplomat as military exercises are announced

bne IntelIiNews July 27, 2020

Ankara attempting to export “very destabilising” presence it has shown in eastern Mediterranean, North Africa and Middle East to South Caucasus says Yerevan’s envoy to Netherlands.

Turkish lira nears record low versus euro with market anxious over EU sanctions and tie to dollar

bne IntelIiNews July 27, 2020

Spanish foreign minister was in Ankara attempting to ease tensions over eastern Mediterranean drilling plans that have upset Greece and Cyprus.

Poland to table restructuring plan for crippled miner PGG

bne IntelliNews July 27, 2020

PGG has been struggling in 2020, as lockdown measures introduced to curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic reduced demand for electricity. Poland derives nearly 80% of its power from burning hard and lignite coal.

Romanian opposition plans no-confidence motion as rampant rise in COVID-19 cases threatens holidays, elections

bne IntelliNews July 27, 2020

The head of Romania's opposition PSD urged the government to come up with details about how it plans to address the coronavirus pandemic that "seems to have got out of control”.

Taped threat by Bulgarian PM to “burn” opposition MEP confirmed as authentic

bne IntelliNews July 26, 2020

MEP Elena Yoncheva to alert prosecutors in Brussels over leaked audio recording, saying she doesn't trust the independence of the Bulgarian prosecution.

Russia denies interfering in North Macedonia’s July 15 general election

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje July 26, 2020

Election marred by hacker attacks and leaked recordings of conversations among top politicians. Foreign ministry spokesperson says speculation about Russian influence are “absurd” and accuses West of hypocrisy.