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Andrew Naughtie

Edinburgh, United Kingdom
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About Andrew
Andrew Naughtie is a journalist based in Edinburgh, United Kingdom.

Germany's Olaf Scholz has become a major problem for Ukraine

06 Mar 2024
Germany, led by Chancellor Olaf Scholz, is facing criticism for its inconsistent support to Ukraine amidst the ongoing conflict with Russia. Despite initial contributions, Germany's reluctance to provide the Taurus missile system to Ukraine has raised questions about its commitment to Ukrainian victory and European security. A leaked recording contradicted Scholz's claim that deploying the missile would require German troops in Ukraine, leading to Russian threats and internal NATO concerns. The situation coincides with Ukrainian military challenges, including ammunition shortages and the need to destroy high-value Russian assets.

Slovenia refunds thousands of fines imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic

29 Nov 2023
The Slovenian government is refunding thousands of fines issued for non-compliance with mask-wearing and social distancing orders during the COVID-19 pandemic. The fines, totaling approximately 5.7 million euros from March 2020 to May 2022, with 1.7 million euros actually paid, will be reimbursed. The legislation, introduced by the center-left government, aims to rectify police excesses under the previous administration. The justice minister, Dominika Švarc Pipan, described the effort as addressing injustices and unconstitutional human rights invasions. The country, which experienced protests against strict pandemic measures, elected a center-left coalition in April 2022, with Prime Minister Robert Golob promising to restore freedom to the nation.

The Swedish fighter jet that could make a difference in Ukraine

18 Sep 2023
Sweden is considering sending its domestically produced Gripen fighter jets to aid Ukraine in its conflict with Russia. The Swedish Air Force has been training Ukrainian pilots, and the Gripen is touted for its advantages over the F-16, including its design to counter Russian air defenses and its ease of maintenance and operation from dispersed bases. This potential support adds to the narrative of Western backing for Ukraine, as the country highlights its military successes and the direct impact of Western contributions on its efforts against Russian forces.

Prigozhin's death - part of Russia's 'new normal', but does it help Vladimir Putin?

25 Aug 2023
The reported death of Evgeny Prigozhin, leader of the Wagner mercenary group, in a plane crash has sparked suspicions of Kremlin involvement. Prigozhin had publicly criticized Russian military failures in Ukraine and led a brief rebellion against the Russian government earlier in the summer, which was resolved by an agreement with Vladimir Putin's government for his relocation to Belarus in exchange for dropping criminal charges. However, Prigozhin apparently did not fulfill this agreement. Experts from Chatham House and universities suggest that such incidents are part of Russia's 'new normal' and a way to consolidate Putin's power despite military setbacks. The article also touches on the Ukrainian military's ongoing successes and the implications for Putin's position both domestically and in the conflict with Ukraine.

Flip-flops and gigs: Irish national broadcaster RTE engulfed by scandal over extravagant spending

06 Jul 2023
Irish national broadcaster RTÉ is facing a major scandal involving 'slush fund' payments to presenters and extravagant spending. A report by Grant Thornton revealed practices such as buying flip-flops for staff and undisclosed top-ups for high-paid presenters like Ryan Tubridy. RTÉ's board is divided, with some unable to express confidence in its executive leadership. Siún Ní Raghallaigh, RTÉ Board Chair, acknowledged a culture of careless stewardship and hopes for a reformed RTÉ by its centenary in 2026.

The world is arming: a number of countries are rapidly increasing their nuclear arsenal (SIPRI)

12 Jun 2023
Following Vladimir Putin's announcement of the deployment of tactical nuclear weapons in neighboring Belarus, political analysts and military experts have discussed a new and more dangerous phase of the war in Ukraine. The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) reports that several countries are increasing their nuclear capabilities, with China rapidly expanding its nuclear warheads, potentially matching Russia and the US by the end of the decade. India and Pakistan are developing new weapons, with India focusing on long-range weapons that could theoretically target China. North Korea continues to produce long-range missiles and has increased its nuclear warheads and fissile material stockpiles. The ongoing military conflict in Ukraine remains a primary concern for global security, with Russian threats of nuclear strikes. Belarus confirmed the transfer of Iskander missiles with a 500-kilometer range from Russia and the production of Su-25 aircraft capable of carrying these missiles, putting most European NATO allies at risk. The US has attempted diplomatic dialogue with Russia regarding nuclear arms, with White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan expressing interest in managing nuclear risks and developing post-2026 agreements.

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