Iran and Saudi Arabia break diplomatic ties

After the execution of a prominent Shiite cleric on Saturday by Saudi Arabian officials, it seems that despite the passage of the landmark nuclear deal with the West, Iran’s Arab neighbors are cutting themselves off diplomatically and maybe, economically. After major protests in Tehran after the cleric Nemer al-Nemer’s execution, where crowds burned the Saudi…

Ukrainian power systems disabled by cyber attack

Hackers allegedly linked to Russian security services were  reportedly behind attacks on the Ukrainian power grid that caused black outs in the capital region and throughout western Ukraine. According to officials that have analyzed samples of BlackEnergy, the code used in the attacks, control systems used to “coordinate remote substations were disabled” in the attack. A…

Russia to halt purchasing natural gas from Turkmenistan

Russian state-owned natural gas company Gazprom has announced the cessation of purchasing agreements with Turkmenistan for its primary export, a huge blow to Turkmenistan’s economy. The decision, according to a statement from Turkmengaz, was a result of “changing conjunctures on the international gas market, as well as particular economic and financial issues arising at Gazprom…

Ukraine imposes retaliatory sanctions against Russia

Ukraine’s parliament voted for the bill allowing the Cabinet of Ministers to impose tit-for-tat sanctions against Russia. The amendment to the law of Ukraine on International Business Activity authorizes economic penalties against Russia in response to discriminatory actions of the aggressor state. 291 MPs, that is more than necessary number of lawmakers (226) voted in…