'I'm Not Afraid': The Belarusian Great-Grandmother Who Became A Symbol Of Protest
Nina Bahinskaya, a septuagenarian great-grandmother, says she never misses a protest against the government following an August presidential election widely seen as rigged. She's been attending anti-government protests since the 1980s.
They may not make international headlines, but these real-life, first-person stories offer insight into everyday life in Russia, Ukraine, Central Asia, and beyond that no news analysis can provide. Put a face on trends, policies, and events in Eurasia with profiles (in mostly chronological order) from My Story.
Kazakh Women Shave Heads To Demand Political Freedom And Democracy
Women in Kazakhstan have posted videos online in which they shave their heads in a sign of protest against the repression of opposition activists. Many are demanding freedom and democratic reforms. As one woman put it: "I live in a prison called Kazakhstan."
'Simply Waiting For A Taxi': The Story Of One Man Killed By Belarusian Security Forces
A 44-year-old Belarusian truck driver died in the hospital of gunshot wounds, after being fired on by security forces in the western city of Brest. His daughter told us "there was blood everywhere." At least six people have been killed in a monthlong crackdown.
Funeral Held For Independent Russian Journalist Who Set Herself On Fire
Hundreds of mourners have bid farewell to independent Russian journalist Irina Slavina, who died after setting herself on fire in an apparent reaction to investigators trying to tie her to an opposition group and what's been described as years of harassment by authorities.
Nobody's Child: Inside Ukraine's Controversial Surrogate Adoption Industry
Ukraine is one of the few countries in the world that allows commercial surrogacy. But when something goes wrong, human lives hang in the balance, and critics say the business should be stopped or at least regulated.
A Bishkek Florist's Generosity Blossoms Amid The Pandemic
Salamat Baktybek-Kyzy, 21, had been saving the profits from her florist business in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan to buy herself a prosthetic leg. But when orders collapsed amid the COVID-19 lockdown, she decided to start donating flowers for free.
Russia's 'Captain Tom': Stalingrad Veteran Raises Money Amid COVID-19 Battle
A 97-year-old Russian World War II veteran has been inspired by the fund-raising efforts of the UK's Captain Tom Moore during the coronavirus pandemic She is posting war stories online every day to raise money for the families of Russian medics who have died fighting COVID-19.
Russian Medical Students Fill Gaps In COVID-19 Battle
Russian students say they're being threatened with expulsion from medical school if they refuse to work in hospitals as the country's health system struggles to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic. The move to recruit students comes as questions are being asked about how many medical workers have died and amid allegations that there is a lack of personal protective equipment.
No Money, No Food: COVID-19 Hits Post-Soviet Poor
Across former Soviet countries, lockdowns due to the coronavirus are hitting the poor hardest. The many workers in the gray areas of the economies have been left destitute and even homeless, while some charities that might provide help are closing down.