Sanctions intended to be biting have more often been toothless and about giving supporters the warm, fuzzy feeling that comes from taking a principled stand.
Cat dollar via www.shutterstock.com
Sanctions have a terrible track record of success because they’re usually too weak to work and too easy to get around.
Business as usual for European commissioner for competition, Margrethe Vestager.
The EU's antitrust case against Russian energy giant Gazprom is about competition, but has many political elements to it too.
The Baikal seal is found nowhere else on Earth.
Plans to dam Lake Baikal's most important tributary could kick off an international dispute.
Alexis Tsipras' visit to Moscow this week drew a terse response from Angela Merkel, but no deal has been announced.
Alexey Nikolsky/Ria Novosti/Kremlin Pool/EPA/AAP
As Greece wastes time seeking war repatriations to help cover its debts, a better solution would be debt forgiveness - with conditions.
Russia won’t like this.
Finland is to become the last Nordic country to legalise same-sex marriage. And Russia isn't going to like it.
Chilling. The Kremlin in Moscow.
Russia should be an exciting opportunity for global business, but the president's "sistema" means the back room rules of the game are king.
Vladimir Putin has his own geopolitical priorities.
EPA/Alexei Druginyn/RIA Novosti/Kremlin Pool
Reports that Russia would use nuclear weapons if NATO continues to push into the Baltic states are misleading.and mischievous.
Maybe they just haven’t noticed I’m here…?
Vladimir Putin burned a lot of bridges in Ukraine, so he's finding new sources of international support wherever he can.
Putin’s pals are pushing his buttons.
Rivalry between the Russian president's allies could be making his life hard.
Pole position: the resource-rich Arctic matters like never before.
As the ice recedes and technology for recovering resources in extreme conditions improves, the Arctic could become the theatre for future global conflicts. Here's the story so far.
Tamerlan Eskerkhanov, one of the suspects, is taken into custody.
Prime suspect has retracted his confession, yet the Chechen Republic
Once upon a time it was an eternal indestructible friendship
The remnants of the Cuba-Soviet relationship are still very much part of Cuban culture – a fact on display at this month's Miami International Film Festival
Backstairs politics: Kevin Spacey and Lars Mikkelsen.
The West's most popular political drama has finally started taking Russia seriously – a measure of how much Putin has changed the game.
The cast of BBC Radio 4’s adaptation.
Tolstoy’s celebrated novel War and Peace has recently been enjoying some fresh attention thanks to a number of adaptations. BBC Radio 4 broadcast a ten-part adaptation of the novel. Later this year, the…
A Russian school bus. Going in the right direction?
A new survey has found many Russians want reforms to schools and better quality control of education.
A sign remembering murdered Russian democracy activist Boris Nemtsov sums up the mood: it reads “Boris”; but with the last letter added it means “fight”.
Boris Nemtsov's warning about the festering bureaucratic corruption under Putin made him powerful enemies.
The face of a Russia that could have been.
For Russia to make peace with its troubled post-Communist history, it needs a 1990s hero to remember. Boris Nemtsov could be just that.
Moscow remembers: the Nemtsov memorial march.
Russians took to the streets in their thousands to protest the murder of Boris Nemtsov – but can popular dissent withstand deadly intimidation?
Scene of the crime.
The death of Boris Nemtsov is a watershed moment for Russia, that also sees the passing of certain assumptions in the country.
Brinkmanship is back.
Pipeline image via www.shutterstock.com
As tensions run high over Russia's gas supplies to the Ukraine, and by extension parts of Europe, the reality for the EU is less than perfect: it will need Russian gas for the foreseeable future.