Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko. After his last re-election five years ago prompting a brutal police crackdown and the arrest of hundreds of people, including several presidential candidates. Photograph: Nikolai Petrov/Belta/Pool/EPA

The European Union is poised to suspend sanctions on autocratic Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko and his allies, if Sunday’s election brings no (...)

 European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker: “We must make efforts towards a practical relationship with Russia . . . that must be the case. We can’t go on like this.” Photograph: Armin Weigel/EPA

The European Commission has denied there are divisions within the European Union over Russia following comments about EU policy by Jean-Claude Junc(...)

US president Barack Obama meets with Russian president Vladimir Putin at the Group of 20 summit meeting in Mexico, in 2012. Photograph: Stephen Crowley/The New York Times

Through the summer of 2015, Vladimir Putin has played a bold and unexpected diplomatic hand, taking Moscow from being frozen out over Ukraine to a pow(...)

A monitor at a court’s press room shows Ukrainian airforce helicopter navigator Nadezhda (Nadiya) Savchenko, who is charged with involvement in the killing of two Russian journalists in eastern Ukraine. Photograph: Sergei Venyavsky/AFP/Getty Images.

The murder trial of Ukrainian pilot Nadiya Savchenko has begun despite international condemnation and accusations that the charges have been fabricate(...)

Russian president Vladimir Putin (right) and former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi visit an Italian war cemetery near the Black Sea port of Sevastopol. Photograph: Alexei Druzhinin/AFP/Getty Images

Russian president Vladimir Putin appeared to be having a great time when he and the disgraced former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi popped a(...)

Irish film director Johnny O’Reilly’s interview with a Russian television station was cut short when he said Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov had been thrown in prison for political reasons.

Irish film director Johnny O’Reilly’s interview with a Russian television station was dramatically cut short after he said Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Se(...)

 Sepp Blatter reveals Russia as holders for the 2018 World Cup on December 2nd, 2010, in Zurich. Workers at the Zenit arena say they haven’t received payment in months. File photograph: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Labourers working on one of Russia’s World Cup venues are complaining that they have not been paid for months, despite the budget for the arena increa(...)

Ukrainian film-maker Oleg Sentsov looks on from a defendants’ cage as he attends a court hearing in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. Photograph: Sergey Pivovarov/Reuters

A military court in Russia jailed Oleg Sentsov, a Ukrainian film-maker, for 20 years yesterday for allegedly plotting terrorist attacks in Crimea, as (...)

Vladimir Putin: The Russian president  held meetings on tourism  in Crimea, which Russia annexed from Ukraine 17 months ago, after a night of heavy shelling in eastern Ukraine killed at least seven people and injured several others, according to Kiev and rebel officials.    Photograph:  Reuters

Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko has accused Russian leader Vladimir Putin of stoking their countries’ conflict, by visiting the disputed Crime(...)

Armies from Azerbaijan, Angola, Armenia, Belarus, Venezuela, Egypt, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, China (above), Kuwait, Mongolia, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Russia, Serbia and Tajikistan take part in the ‘International Army Games 2015’ held in Russia. Photograph: Mazim Shipenkov/EPA

Intensified military exercises by Russia and Nato are fueling tensions in Europe that have already been heightened by the conflict in Ukraine, a re(...)