Russia’s president Vladimir Putin with defence minister Sergei Shoigu. Photograph: Mikhail Klimentyev/EPA/Ria Novosti

Nato defence chiefs meet today as the alliance changes its strategic posture to counter a combative Russia, and amid fears that rising military activi(...)

‘The US Supreme Court will decide before the end of this month whether gays and lesbians have a constitutional right to marry. If the court says yes, all state laws against equal marriage will fall. The outcome would represent another major step towards the vindication of LGBTI rights generally (and, as a trivial aside, would allow us to congratulate American friends on their judiciary having caught up with the plain people of Ireland). Supporters of same-sex marriages  outside the US Supreme Court on April 28th, 2015. Photograph:  MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/Getty Images

The US Supreme Court will decide before the end of this month whether gays and lesbians have a constitutional right to marry. If the court says yes, a(...)

Chiril Gaburici, who resigned as Moldova’s prime minister on Friday. His travails intensified pressure on the government as Russia seeks to strengthen its position in two pro-Moscow regions of Moldova. Photograph: Viktor Dimitrov/Reuters

Moldova’s pro-Russian parties were expected to defeat pro-EU rivals in yesterday’s local elections, which were dominated by political and fina(...)

A statue of Lenin in Tiraspol, the administrative capital of Transdniestria, an enclave in Moldova: for Moldovans who don’t believe in Russia, but have lost faith in the EU, there may be an alternative: Romania. Photograph: John Fleming

“Dracula is watching us to make sure it happens.” Bogdan Diaconu drags on yet another cigarette and smiles. The Romanian politician, president of the (...)

Mikheil Saakashvili: after leading Georgia’s 2003 Rose Revolution, he fought graft and bureaucracy and attracted foreign investors to an economy which, for a few years, was one of the most dynamic in the world – achievements that Ukraine is desperate to match. Photograph: Gerard Cerles/AFP

The people of Odessa, a freewheeling Ukrainian port known for its salty sense of humour, are already having fun with – and at the expense of –their fa(...)

European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker (left), Ukraine’s president Petro Poroshenko and Latvia prime minister Laimdota Straujuma before the Eastern Partnership summit session in Riga, Latvia, on Friday. Photograph: Reuters/Ints Kalnins

The spiral domes alongside the art nouveau architecture of Latvia’s capital city are testimony to the complex cultural heritage of this eastern corner(...)

Latvian president Andris Berzins welcomes German chancellor Angela Merkel at the House of the Blackhead in Riga  at the start of the EU Eastern Partnership Summit. Photograph: Alain Jocardalain/AFP/Getty Images

German chancellor Angela Merkel has attempted to ease Russian concerns ahead of the Riga summit, stressing that the EU’s eastern partnership policy (...)

The idea of a specific EU neighbourhood policy to deal with countries to its east began to gain ground in 2007 and 2008, supported by countries such as Poland and Sweden. Photograph: Getty Images

Eighteen months after the last Eastern Partnership summit in Vilnius, EU leaders gather in Riga today for a two-day summit on the EU’s relationship wi(...)

British prime minster David Cameron: he will come face to face with EU leaders for the first time since his party’s decisive victory in the British general election two weeks ago. Photograph: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

British prime minister David Cameron is expected to make his opening salvo in his bid to renegotiate Britain’s relationship with the European Union w(...)

Polina Gagarina of Russia received a warm reception from the 10,500-strong audience to qualify for the  final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2015 on on Tuesday night in Vienna, Austria. Photograph: Nigel Treblin/Getty Images 2:08

Hotly-tipped Russia qualified for the Eurovision Song Contest final last Tuesday night and received a strong response from the 10,500 audience members(...)