Russian News Time… (11/04/2010)

Coffee News...

Georgia, Iran agree visa-free travel:
Georgia and Iran have agreed visa-free travel for their citizens for a period not exceeding 45 days. The document was signed by Foreign Ministers Grigol Vashadze and Manuchehr Motaki on Wednesday and will come into force next year.

Israel refuses to cooperate with UNESCO:
Israel has suspended cooperation with UNESCO over its recognition of Palestinian sovereignty over some religious shrines. Deputy Foreign Minister Dani Ayalon made this statement on Wednesday.

Chernomyrdin to be buried at Novodevichye on Friday:
Russians are paying their last respects to the former Prime Minister and former Russian ambassador to Ukraine Viktor Chernomyrdin who died on Wednesday at the age of 72. His body lies in state at the Government Reception House at the Vorobyovy Hills. T he farewell ceremony will begin at 4:00 p.m.

Moscow hosts electronic entertainment show:
More than 90,000 visitors are expected at Russia’s biggest electronic entertainment show Igromir-2010 in Moscow. About 100 participants from Russia and abroad are expected to attend the annual exhibition to present their computer games. Moscow has hosted Igromir since 2006. Last year it attracted more than 80,000 visitors.

Medvedev, Karzai discuss anti-drug efforts:
The Russian and Afghan Presdidents Dmitry Medvedev and Hamid Karzai have come out for a tighter joint crackdown on drug trafficking. The two had a telephone talk on Saturday. They also spoke about a recent operation in Afghanistan, with assistance from the Russian and American anti-drug services, during which four heroin laboratories were destroyed.

Tokyo rejects calls for anti-Russian sanctions:
In Japan, supporters of a tougher stance towards Russia are calling for economic sanctions, for vetoing its accession to the World Trade Organization and for suspending funding for joint projects.

START ratification delayed:
The Republican takeover of the US House of Representatives in mid-term elections on Tuesday makes the Obama presidency a lame duck with little clout to pursue the lsquo;resettingrsquo; of Russian-American relations and push through the ratification of the latest Russian-American strategic arms reduction agreement, signed at a Prague summit on April 8th.

Russia celebrates National Unity Day:
Russia is celebrating National Unity Day. Established in 2004 on the initiative of the ruling United Russia party, it commemorates the feat of Kuzma Minin and Dmitry Pozharsky who led a volunteer army during the liberation of Moscow from Polish-Lithuanian invaders in 1612. Unity Day ceremonies and political actions are being held in Moscow and other Russian cities.

Iran confirms its willingness to begin talks on nuclear issue:
Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki reiterated Tehrans readiness on Wednesday to begin negotiations on its nuclear program. We are ready to resume talks today.

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