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Branding the Russian Rouble (11/26)

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Branding the Russian Rouble -- Update 12/13

And the winning symbol for the Russian rouble is:

wsj201312r

Picture from Wall Street Journal

Bank of Russia announced that 61 percent in a popular poll had chosen the Russian letter R which looks like a P in Latin script--crossed with a horizontal stripe--for its official symbol in an effort to encourage the use of the rouble internationally.

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By Leah Katherine Bewley, European Affairs Editorial Assistant

As part of the Russian effort to promote itself as a stable financial center after years of hyperinflation and devaluation, the Russian Central Bank is currently rebranding its currency, the rouble and its symbol. Until now, there has been no internationally recognized symbol for the rouble. The Kremlin is looking to increase confidence in the rouble “as a safe currency for investments and savings.”

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The Eastern Partnership Vilnius-Summit and the Battle for Ukraine (11/20)

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By Caroline Larsson, European Institute

The upcoming summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, November 28-29, will be pivotal for the future of the European Union’s Eastern Partnership, an initiative through which the EU has sought to engage with a number of former Soviet republics, who are not members of the EU. Action on the proposed EU association and trade agreements with Ukraine has become the touchstone.

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NSA Scandal: European Parliamentarians Visit (11/6)

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By Brian Beary, Washington Correspondent for Europolitics

Some two dozen members of the European Parliament (MEP)s were in Washington last week with one topic dominating their agenda: the ongoing revelations of mass U.S. government electronic surveillance of Europeans. With the National Security Agency (NSA) spy scandal continuing to grab headlines, the euro-parliamentarians had little difficulty attracting media attention. Moreover, the sharp embarrassment being felt by the US government had a further positive effect for them. While scheduling face-to-face meetings with top level U.S. officials can be a challenge, on this occasion, the parliamentarians secured numerous top level encounters. Most notably, German MEP Elmar Brok and British MEP Claude Moraes, two key figures in Parliament’s ongoing inquiry on mass government surveillance, met with General Keith Alexander, the Director of the NSA. They also had face time with Diane Feinstein, Chair of the Senate intelligence committee, who has been briefed extensively on the NSA’s activities, and with Lisa Monaco, President Obama’s top counter-terrorism policy advisor. Attendance at think tank seminars like the meeting at The European Institute, with MEP Jan Philipp Albrecht and FTC Commissioner Julie Brill, were oversubscribed.

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