‘From Russia with Love’: Valentine’s Day meets Ukraine crisis
14 February 2022 | 3:00 pm
The German press discusses the stakes for German Chancellor Olaf Scholz as he heads to Ukraine and Russia. We also take a look at some cartoons. Meanwhile, the papers are discussing the rap-focused Super Bowl halftime show and how it "sticks it" to the NFL. We also find out why some Ugandan schools are closing for good. Finally, it's Valentine's Day and the press explains why kissing is good for us.
It's been a rollercoaster 24 hours on global stock markets, with huge swings on Wall Street and volatility hitting its highest level since October 2020. Investors are waiting for the decision from the US Federal Reserve on when it will start raising interest rates, but are also concerned about the rising tensions at Ukraine's border. Meanwhile, Bitcoin has slumped as low as $33,000, down over 50 percent from its peak in November. Our Business Editor Stephen Carroll has the details.
Russia still seems to be beefing up the military presence on its border with Ukraine, while Kyiv has received military support from the US and and its NATO allies. Germany won't send weapons to Ukraine, saying that would only escalate the situation.
Moscow and regional allies want to send a message of unity to the Islamist insurgents with the so-called Collective Security Treaty Organisation. DW's Juri Rescheto reports from Tajikistan where anti-terrorism drills have been taking place at the border.
With Russia massing 100,000 combat-ready troops just across Ukraine's eastern border, many fear an invasion is imminent. DW's Nick Connolly traveled to Ukraine's war-torn Donbass region and talked to residents and soldiers who live on the front line.
Inmates in the prison hospital in Saratov, southwestern Russia, were allegedly tortured and filmed. The videos, which have now been revealed, are a blow for law enforcement officers. And it might not be an isolated case.
From media outlets, punk activists and journalists, to human rights defenders and even ordinary citizens — dozens of people have been ensnared by Russia's law on foreign agents. What exactly does the legislation entail?
Colonel Assimi Goïta, who took power in Mali in an August 2020 coup, has been slow to put in place a promised transition to civilian rule. Now under international sanctions, the country has been gripped by nationalist and pan-African fever for several weeks. Relations with former colonial power France, which has deployed thousands of soldiers as part of an anti-jihadist force for nearly a decade, are strained to the point that Mali recently expelled the French ambassador. Meanwhile, the ruling junta in Bamako is welcoming new allies: members of the Russian paramilitary Wagner Group. Their presence has already been reported in certain areas of the country.
With concern still high over a potential war between Russia and Ukraine, NATO's deputy secretary general spoke to FRANCE 24. Mircea Geoana told our Europe editor Catherine Nicholson: "NATO will not get involved militarily in Ukraine – we support Ukraine in many other ways, individual allies support Ukraine. And in order to deter Russia from doing that ... is to really demonstrate to the leadership in the Kremlin that in a cost-benefit analysis, an additional military intervention in Ukraine is a net loss for Russia."
"Everything is on the table" regarding new EU sanctions on Russia - but "de-escalation through diplomacy" remains the bloc's priority in the Ukraine crisis. So says EU Justice Commissioner Didier Reynders in an in-depth interview with FRANCE 24's Europe Editor Catherine Nicholson. The former Belgian foreign minister said the European Commission is preparing measures that could include individual sanctions on "people involved in the possible aggression – such as freezing their assets or a travel ban", as well as what he described as "concrete economic sanctions: transfer of technologies from Europe and in co-ordination with the United States; energy; and maybe financial services".
The first contingent of 2,000 additional US soldiers has arrived near Frankfurt, with others touching down near Poland's border with Ukraine. The White House says the troops will protect eastern NATO members from potential Russian aggression.
Costa Rican voters are choosing the country's next president amid frustration over corruption scandals, the COVID-19 pandemic and poor economic conditions. Much of the electorate remains undecided.
Since December, Russia has gradually amassed more than 100,000 troops along its border with Ukraine. Amid stalled talks between the US and Russia, French President Emmanuel Macron is embarking on a solo mission to Moscow and then Kyiv, insisting a diplomatic solution is still possible. For more on what to expect from this latest diplomatic push, we spoke to Natia Seskuria, Associate Fellow at the Royal United Services Institute. "Russia will not stop at Ukraine," she warned.
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