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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

News in Brief

Prison Sentences Down

Courts have been reducing the number of prison terms issued, replacing them with other penalties, the Federal Prison Service said Monday.

The trend comes amid the government's drive to fulfill international commitments as part of its membership in the Council of Europe, the agency said, Interfax reported. Currently, more than 50 percent of verdicts delivered by Russian courts do not call for prison terms.

The prison service intends to introduce the practice of releasing convicts while limiting their movement by forcing them to wear electronic monitoring devices, Interfax said. (MT)

Tajiks Cancel Army Parade

The traditional May 9 Victory Day military parade has been cancelled in Tajikistan because of budget constraints related to the financial crisis as well as safety concerns, the Tajik Defense Ministry said Monday.

The Central Asian republic has been hit hard by the global economic crisis, a ministry source told Interfax. The safety concerns stem from an incident at last year's parade, in which a local police official's car plowed into a crowd of spectators, killing one and seriously injuring five, the source said.(MT)

For the Record

Moldova's Communist government resigned on Monday -- a formal step before the newly elected parliament chooses a new leader to replace President Vladimir Voronin.(Reuters)

Georgia's opposition said Monday that it would block the three highways leading to Tbilisi from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, escalating a drive to oust President Mikheil Saakashvili.(Reuters)