Aleksandar's Feed
Mar 15, 2014

Crimea prepares for referendum under heavy military presence

SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine (Reuters) – Pro-Russian leaders in Crimea made final preparations on Saturday for a referendum widely expected to transfer control of the Black Sea peninsula from Ukraine to Moscow, despite the threat of sanctions and condemnation from Western governments.

Sunday’s vote, dismissed by Kiev as illegal, has triggered the worst East-West crisis since the Cold War, and ratcheted up tensions not only in Crimea but also eastern Ukraine, where two people were killed in clashes late on Friday.

Mar 14, 2014

Serbian paramilitaries join pro-Russian forces in Crimea

BAKCHISARAY, Ukraine (Reuters) – Bearded men in camouflage uniforms and black fur hats and armed with knives, were checking traffic on Thursday along the busy road linking Crimea’s regional capital of Simferopol and the naval port of Sevastopol.

A black flag with a skull, the standard of Serbian nationalists, and a Serbian national flag fluttered in the wind alongside the Russian tricolor, bringing back images from the turbulent events of the 1990s in the Balkans.

Mar 13, 2014

Crimea leader sees over 80 percent backing Russia union

SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine (Reuters) – The leader of Crimea’s separatist authorities said more than 80 percent of the region’s people supported the break with Ukraine and union with Russia that they will vote on in a referendum on Sunday.

Sergei Aksyonov, who came to power as Russian-backed forces seized the Black Sea peninsula last week, dismissed opponents’ accusations that he will fix the outcome on Moscow’s orders.

Mar 13, 2014

EU moves toward sanctions on Russians; Obama meets Ukraine PM

BRUSSELS/SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine (Reuters) – The European Union agreed on a framework on Wednesday for its first sanctions on Russia since the Cold War, a stronger response to the Ukraine crisis than many expected and a mark of solidarity with Washington in the drive to make Moscow pay for seizing Crimea.

U.S. President Barack Obama warned Russia it faced costs from the West unless it changed course in Ukraine, and pledged to “stand with Ukraine” as he met with the country’s new prime minister in Washington.

Mar 12, 2014

EU moves towards travel bans, asset freezes for Russians

BRUSSELS/SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine (Reuters) – The EU agreed a framework on Thursday for its first sanctions on Russia since the Cold War, a stronger response to the Ukraine crisis than many had expected and a mark of solidarity with Washington in the effort to make Moscow pay for seizing Crimea.

The EU sanctions, outlined in a document seen by Reuters, would slap travel bans and asset freezes on an as-yet-undecided list of people and firms accused by Brussels of violating the territorial integrity of Ukraine.

Feb 13, 2014

Serbia keeps rates on hold with dinar under pressure

BELGRADE, Feb 13 (Reuters) – Serbia’s central bank kept its
benchmark interest rate on hold for a second straight month on
Thursday with the dinar under pressure pending a March 16
election that investors hope will spur an economic overhaul.

The decision was in line with the results of a Reuters poll
in which 10 out of 14 traders and dealers predicted the
rate would stay at 9.5 percent. Four expected a cut
of 25 basis points.

Feb 5, 2014

For migrant workers, Olympic dream turns to nightmare in Sochi

BELGRADE/BILECA (Reuters) – When Sasa Matic was offered a job on a building site in Sochi, he suspected it was too good to be true.

Yet he and scores of others from Serbia and Bosnia heeded the siren call of Russia’s 2014 Winter Olympics, seduced by the prospect of earning more in two months than most Serbs or Bosnians pocket in a year.

Feb 5, 2014

Olympics-For migrant workers, Olympic dream turns to nightmare in Sochi

BELGRADE/BILECA, Feb 5 (Reuters) – When Sasa Matic was offered a job on a building site in Sochi, he suspected it was too good to be true.

Yet he and scores of others from Serbia and Bosnia heeded the siren call of Russia’s 2014 Winter Olympics, seduced by the prospect of earning more in two months than most Serbs or Bosnians pocket in a year.

Jan 28, 2014

Serbian government asks president to call early election

BELGRADE, Jan 28 (Reuters) – Serbia’s coalition government
asked President Tomislav Nikolic on Tuesday to dissolve
parliament and call an early election, after the centre-right
SNS party called at the weekend for a stronger mandate to
accelerate economic reforms.

Nikolic is expected to call the parliamentary election for
mid-March, just under two years since Serbs last voted.

Jan 26, 2014

Serbian ruling party agrees to seek early election

BELGRADE (Reuters) – The leadership of Serbia’s dominant Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) agreed on Sunday to seek an early parliamentary election, aiming to capitalise on a surge in popularity to cement its grip on power and push through economic reforms.

After a meeting in Belgrade, SNS leader and Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic told reporters the party’s presidency had endorsed his proposal.