(Rusia va a limitar el número de observadores internacionales en las elecciones y acaba de anunciar que suspende el acuerdo de control de armas con la UE).
Russia has opened a diplomatic campaign to curtail the activities of election observers in the states of the former Soviet Union, proposing to cut the size of the missions sharply and to prohibit the publication of their reports immediately after an election.
The proposals, circulated confidentially last month by Russia at the headquarters in Vienna of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, would also forbid observers to make any public statements about a governments electoral conduct in the days after citizens voted.
Taken together, the proposals would severely undermine the activities of the organizations election-monitoring arm before two important elections in Russia: the parliamentary election planned for Dec. 2 and presidential elections next spring. They are also the latest Kremlin effort to renegotiate standards for governing and international cooperation that it accepted after the Soviet Unions collapse, and seem certain to lead to another impasse with the West.
The monitoring arm, the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, or O.D.I.H.R., sends long-term and short-term observation teams, often numbering in the hundreds of people, to elections throughout the states of the former Soviet Union.
Ambassador Christian Strohal, the Austrian diplomat who leads the office, said the proposals appeared to be devised to limit the capacity and influence of objective assessments of the governments electoral conduct.
Putin's administration has consistently carried out a policy of smothering political opposition and has tried vigorously to illegally place independent, nonpolitical civil society activities under its control. I believe he has decimated the very concept of an independent judiciary. With his knowledge and agreement, and more likely by his direct instruction, dozens of my fellow citizens have had harsh, unjust, politically motivated prison sentences meted out to them. He therefore bears direct responsibility for the appearance of a new generation of political prisoners in Russia.
Russia to suspend European arms treaty @ DW. European Parliament in Brussels has expressed concern over the Russian Parliament's unanimous vote to suspend Moscow's participation in a key European arms control treaty. The Duma ruling on a decree issued by President Vladimir Putin in July is seen as a response to US plans to build a missile defence shield in Poland and the Czech Republic. The Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe was signed by 16 NATO nations and six members of the former Warsaw Pact in 1990. It sets maximum levels for conventional weapons stocks in an area that stretches from Russia's Ural mountains to the Atlantic Coast of western Europe. WOW, Putin must be very worried about EU "concern".
Putin dictating agenda to EU, thinktank says @ de Guardian Unlimited de Ian Traynor, Europe editor: Europe has lost the plot in trying to cope with a resurgent Russia under President Vladimir Putin, who is dictating the agenda in his dealings with European capitals, according to a study published yesterday. As I said Putin must be very worried.
Reuters - Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili drew an angry response from Russia on Thursday and faced growing censure from supporters in the West after he quashed opposition protests and imposed emergency rule.
Tension between Georgia and Russia worsened today as the Georgian president accused Russian spies of whipping-up unrest among the political opposition.
Russia is now doing in Georgia exactly what it has already tried and failed to do in Ukraine -- use street protests by stooges to force the regime to call elections. It lost those elections in Ukraine, and we saw Yulia Timoshenko rise to power. Having failed, it's doggedly trying again in Georgia.
It will fail again. And when it does, it will not stop. It will move to yet another level of barbarity, outrage and attack, and like the Terminator it will not stop until it has destroyed itself or regained these nations as slave states. The lessons of history mean nothing to Russians, nor do the lives of Russian citizens. Only the great imaginary "destiny" of Russia itself.
About Russian situation:
Putin está reduciendo a marchas forzadas el número de observadores internacionales que deberían velar porque las elecciones de diciembre al Parlamento y de la primavera del año que viene para elegir Presidente, no fueran falseadas. Además, la propuesta de Putin incluye también la prohibición de que los observadores internacionales puedan hablar de la conducta del Gobierno durante ambas elecciones, lo que ha disparado aún más las alarmas.
A esto se añade la crisis con Georgia, donde,como ya hiciera antes en Ucrania, con escaso éxito, Rusia está intentando intervenir en sus asuntos, usando el petróleo (cómo no) y la forzando la falta de estabilización interna.
Putin ha anunciado también que abandona el tratado de control de armas que mantenía con la UE, lo que se considera una respuesta al deseo USA de instalar el escudo antimisiles en Polonia y Chequia. La UE como siempre, blandita, dice que "le preocupa" este abandono...
Arriba teneis un vídeo de cómo Putin maltrata a los periodistas en su labor informativa. Una pena que no esté traducido.