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…

The US imposes further sanctions on Russia

The Obama administration tightened economic pressure on Russia over its intervention in Ukraine by imposing further sanctions on some Russian individuals and companies. Most of the targeted groups were associates or bank subsidiaries of people and companies already sanctioned before by the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control. The group includes 34 people or…

EU plans to extend sanctions on Russia

An EU official told RFE/RL that the EU plans to extend sanctions against Russia when EU ambassadors gather for a meeting slated to take place on December 21. The sanctions to be officially extended until July 31, 2016 target Russia’s financial, oil and military sectors as well as specific individuals. A December 14 meeting of…

Russia expands military presence in Syria

Russia is expanding its presence in Syria, adding a second airbase as well as other command posts. Currently, Moscow has four operating bases in Syria including recently added bases in Hama and Tiyas. But now the West is most concerned about the second airbase in Shayrat capable of supporting fixed-wing aircraft which greatly expands Russia’s…

Russia imposes sanctions on Turkey over downed jet

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree enforcing economic sanctions against Turkey in retaliation for the downing of a Russian military jet near the Syrian-Turkish border. The statement posted on the Kremlin’s website cites national security, listing a ban on chartered flights between Russia and Turkey, and ordered tour operators to refrain from offering trips…