News Summary

The Vostok Report

27 February: Slovenia’s government, mired in allegations of corruption, lost a no confidence vote. Prime Minister Janez Jensa resigned, to be replaced by Alenka Bratusek. Anxieties were raised in other European capitals that the process would delay the ratification of Croatia’s EU accession, which is scheduled to take place on 1 July 2013.

Source: Economist

28 February: Moldova’s government also faces a no confidence vote on 5 March, which may prompt early elections.  Prime Minister Vlad Filat has been struggling to hold the coalition government together and, should the no confidence motion succeed, the President Nicolae Timofiti will need to put forward a new candidate.  If his candidate is rejected by three successive parliamentary votes, a new election would be required according to the Moldovan Constitution.

Source: Reuters

1 March: Hungarian Prime Minister, Victor Orban appointed a loyalist to head the country’s Central Bank. Mr Orban defended the appointment, saying that in his view it was crucial that the Governor had first-hand experience of government. György Matolcsy was described by the Prime Minister as the “least risky” choice.

Source: Financial Times

25 February: The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has reportedly described Belarus’ economy as stable, ahead of the announcement of a trade deal between Belarus and Azerbaijan. The IMF is due to visit Belarus on 14 March 2013.

Source: Eastbook

28 February: Fresh from success in the Verkhovna Rada, Vitali Klitschko’s UDAR Party have taken their campaign for personal voting to the Kyiv City Council. Opposition groups had blocked the opening of a new session of Parliament over accusations that allowing Deputies to cast votes by proxy was an invitation for corruption. Klitschko once ran for the Mayoralty of Kyiv and is reportedly under pressure from the Fatherland Party to do so once more, a move their acting-leader Arsenyi Yatseniuk must hope will allow him to consolidate the parliamentary oppostion under his own leadership.

Source: Kyiv Post

27 February: The Russian Prime Minister, Dmitri Medvedev, has signed an agreement extending Russia’s military presence in Kyrgyzstan for a further twenty years.

Source: Trend

Vladimir Putin has submitted legislation proposing to change the electoral system for the State Duma.  The bill proposes a return to the mixed electoral system that existed in Russia between 1993 and 2003.  Supporters of the bill claim it will increase democracy in Russia, but critics argue it would serve to strengthen United Russia’s overall control of the Duma.

Source: The Moscow Times

28 February: A complaint was filed with the UN Human Rights Committee on behalf of human rights campaigner, Mutabar Tadjibayeva, against the government of Uzbekistan for mistreatment and forced sterilisation. Human Rights Watch describe Uzbekistan’s record on human rights as ‘atrocious.’

Source: Central Asian News

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