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The leaders of the German government coalition CDU/CSU – SPD have managed to calm down the approximately two-week conflict over Hans-Georg Maaßen, the head of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV). In the opinion of critics, including the Social Democrats who co-govern the country, the head of the BfV added credibility to the message of the national-conservative party Alternative for Germany (AfD) and undermined the policy of Chancellor Angela Merkel, challenging the opinion that lynch law and immigrant hunts had been seen during the Chemnitz riots.
Runoffs in which heads of the regions (governors) are elected were held in Russia on 16 and 23 September. The vote in the first round did not decide on the winners in four out of the twenty-two regions in which the governors were elected this year. The election was repeated in Primorsky Krai on 16 September and in Khabarovsk Krai and Vladimir Oblast on 23 September.
For a number of months now the Ukrainian gas mining sector has been undergoing a major overhaul to improve the conditions in which it operates, with a view to significantly increasing production. The most important reforms include lowering tax rates and deregulation. These changes are a result of the government’s gas sector development plan for Ukraine, approved in 2016. Under this programme, the amount of gas extracted is to increase from the current 20 bcm to 27 bcm by as soon as 2020.
On 12 September, the European Parliament brought a motion with a two-thirds majority to the Council stating the risk of a serious breach of EU values by Hungary.
On 14 September, the Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church suspended its working relations with Constantinople in response to Ukraine’s expected autocephaly.
The 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia has become the most expensive World Cup in history, with its cost standing at more than US$ 13 billion.
The 4th Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok was principally the setting for a meeting between Vladimir Putin and the leaders of China, Japan, Mongolia and South Korea.
On 5 September, the Nord Stream 2 company began laying the first pipes in the Gulf of Finland, thus marking the start of the gas pipeline’s construction.
On 7 September a summit was held in Tehran attended by Presidents Hasan Rouhani, Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
Several serious incidents were seen in Serbia-Kosovo relations between 3 and 9 September.