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CLARIN (Argentina), PERU 21 (Peru)

Worldcrunch

A Peruvian man is behind bars for allegedly raping and strangling to death his teenage girlfriend, a reality TV participant whose on-air confessions police say led to her murder.

The victim, 18-year-old Ruth Thalía Sayas Sánchez, earned 15,000 Peruvian soles (about $5,800) for her recent appearance on El Valor de la Verdad (the Value of Truth), a Peruvian reality TV show that asks participants to share intimate secrets about themselves.

During the show’s pilot expand=1] episode, the young woman told host Beto Ortiz that she didn’t really work in a call center, as she’d led friends and family to belive, but as an exotic dancer. She also confesed she’d received money for sex, and said that she was embarrased about her Andean roots, Argentina’s Clarin reported.

Just over two months after the show aired, Sayas Sánchez went missing. Ten days later, police located her lifeless body in a makeshift grave on the outskirts of Lima. Authorities say the victim’s 20-year-old ex-boyfriend, Bryan Barony Romero Leiva, confessed to the crime, admitting he drugged, raped and then strangled the young woman.

Sayas Sánchez’s mother, Vilma Sánchez, confronted Romero Leiva several days before the murder was confirmed. “I went to his house and got down on my knees. I asked him to tell me if he know where she was. He told me he had no idea. I hope they lock him up,” she told the Peruvian daily Perú 21.

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Geopolitics

One By One, The Former Soviet Republics Are Abandoning Putin

From Kazakhstan to Kyrgyzstan, Armenia and Tajikistan, countries in Russia's orbit have refused to help him turn the tide in the Ukraine war. All (maybe even Belarus?) is coming to understand that his next step would be a complete restoration of the Soviet empire.

Leaders of Armenia, Russia, Tajikistan, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan attend a summit marking the 30th anniversary of signing the Collective Security Treaty in Moscow on May 16.

Oleksandr Demchenko

-Analysis-

KYIV — Virtually all of Vladimir Putin's last remaining partner countries in the region are gone from his grip. Kazakhstan, Armenia, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan have refused to help him turn the tide in the Ukraine war, because they've all come to understand that his next step would be a complete restoration of the empire, where their own sovereignty is lost.

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Before zooming in on the current state of relations in the region, and what it means for Ukraine's destiny, it's worth briefly reviewing the last 30 years of post-Soviet history.

The Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) was first created in 1992 by the Kremlin to keep former republics from fully seceding from the former Soviet sphere of influence. The plan was simple: to destroy the local Communist elite, to replace them with "their" people in the former colonies, and then return these territories — never truly considered as independent states by any Russian leadership — into its orbit.

In a word - to restore the USSR.

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