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Sat Feb 29, 2020, 07:03 AM

5 Stories from Europe You May Have Missed

1. No Debate, No Competition, No Surprises -- It's A Tajik Election

With no real competition on offer, no surprises are expected when Tajikistan holds elections on March 1 for the lower house of parliament that are projected to be dominated by President Emomali Rahmon's People's Democratic Party (PDPT).

Some other pro-government parties are expected to get a handful of seats in the 63-strong Majlisi Namoyandagon, as the authorities -- who tightly control the election process -- are keen to avoid having a single-party legislature.

Along with the ruling PDPT, six other smaller parties are taking part in the elections. The Social Democratic Party (SDP) is the only opposition group in the mix.

The vote marks Tajikistan's first parliamentary elections since the Supreme Court outlawed the most influential opposition group, the Islamic Renaissance Party (IRPT), as a terrorist organization in 2015.

https://www.rferl.org/a/no-debate-no-competition-no-surprises--its-a-tajik-election/30460217.html


2. Three Years After Unexplained Medical Emergency, Russian Activist Sues FBI For Toxicology Results

Three years ago, in February 2017, Vladimir Kara-Murza was rushed to a Moscow hospital, where he suffered massive organ failure, forcing doctors to place the Russian democracy activist on a ventilator, put him in a coma, and purify his blood. The symptoms were almost identical to what had happened to him two years earlier.

Days after the second incident, Kara-Murza’s wife took some of the blood drawn by the Moscow doctors and flew to the United States. Upon arrival, she was met by FBI agents who took the samples for testing. After U.S. senators, including Marco Rubio (Republican-Florida) and Roger Wicker (Republican-Mississippi), took a specific interest in the case, FBI officials assured another senator, the late John McCain (Republican-Arizona), that some sort of result would be forthcoming.

But the FBI then reversed itself, according to congressional officials, and declined to release any results: not to Kara-Murza, and not to Congress.

In a lawsuit being filed February 25 in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., Kara-Murza is suing the FBI to obtain records and results of the tests, charging that the U.S. Justice Department -- of which the FBI is a part -- was improperly withholding them.

https://www.rferl.org/a/three-years-after-unexplained-medical-emergency-russian-activist-sues-fbi-for-toxicology-results-/30453432.html


3. Italy's crumbling motorways: how the Genoa bridge collapse exposed a national scandal

The state of Italian motorways is a national scandal. There are about twenty badly-damaged motorway bridges in Italy currently under investigation. There are also 200 illegal tunnels, which don't comply with European standards and 1,000 viaducts where ownership is unclear and which haven't been monitored for years. Riddled with viaducts and tunnels, Liguria, in the north of Italy, is the focus of this crisis.

The collapse of the Morandi viaduct in August 2018, which killed 43 people, was the point at which a long series of incidents became linked. Before the collapse of the Morandi viaduct, there had been a series of worrying incidents.

- In 2016, a flyover close to Milan collapsed under the weight of a truck, one person died.

- In 2017 a bridge collapsed near Ancona killing two people.

- In 2019, a motorway bridge fell on the A6 following a landslide.

- In December 2019, the ceiling of a tunnel collapsed on the A26 not far from Genoa. Luckily, there were no victims.

https://www.euronews.com/2020/02/28/italian-motorways-a-national-scandal


4. Boris Nemtsov: Prague set to rile Moscow by naming square after slain opposition leader

City councillors in Prague are expected to controversially rename a public square in the Czech capital after slain Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov.

The move is likely to inflame tensions with Moscow as the square is located near the Russian embassy in Prague.

Nemtsov, a vocal critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, was shot dead in central Moscow five years ago this month.

The move to rename the square is also another indication of concerns amongst some of the Czech Republic's political class that the country's foreign policy is too closely aligned with authoritarian governments, like those in Russia and China.

https://www.euronews.com/2020/02/12/boris-nemtsov-prague-set-to-rile-russia-by-naming-square-after-slain-opposition-leader


5. 'Great Anger': Far-Right And Populist Parties Aim For Upset In Slovak Elections

Slovaks go to the polls on February 29 to elect a new parliament, with opinion polls suggesting a strong showing for both the far-right and a populist former businessman. The election comes amid the trial of five people charged with organizing or carrying out the murder of journalist Jan Kuciak and his fiancee, Martina Kusnirova, a case which has shaken Slovakia with revelations of ties between state structures and organized crime.

Video at link
https://www.rferl.org/a/great-anger-far-right-and-populist-parties-aim-for-upset-in-slovak-elections/30458293.html


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Reply 5 Stories from Europe You May Have Missed (Original post)
rpannier Feb 2020 OP
Sherman A1 Feb 2020 #1
malaise Feb 2020 #2
oasis Feb 2020 #3
scarletwoman Feb 2020 #4
LittleGirl Feb 2020 #5
sinkingfeeling Feb 2020 #6
steventh Feb 2020 #7

Response to rpannier (Original post)

Sat Feb 29, 2020, 07:13 AM

1. Thanks for posting

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Response to rpannier (Original post)

Sat Feb 29, 2020, 07:23 AM

2. K & R

Thanks

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Response to rpannier (Original post)

Sat Feb 29, 2020, 07:41 AM

3. K and R. Thanks

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Response to rpannier (Original post)

Sat Feb 29, 2020, 08:23 AM

4. Very interesting and informative! Thank you! (nt)

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Response to rpannier (Original post)

Sat Feb 29, 2020, 08:31 AM

5. K n R eom

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Response to rpannier (Original post)

Sat Feb 29, 2020, 08:35 AM

6. Thanks for providing these.

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Response to rpannier (Original post)

Sat Feb 29, 2020, 09:47 AM

7. Thanks for posting these.

About the item 2 "Three Years After Unexplained Medical Emergency, Russian Activist Sues FBI For Toxicology Results."

This smacks of tRump pro-Russia pro-Putin interference. What other reason could the FBI have for withholding the information. I hope the lawsuit is filed. I hope it succeeds in prying loose the information.

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