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Estonians vote amid heightened security concerns over Russia TALLINN: Estonia's centre-left coalition is poised to return to power Sunday in an election marked by nerves in the NATO member over the military resurgence of Russia, and a pro-Kremlin party backed by a sizeable Russian minority. Moscow's annexation of Crimea last year and its meddling in eastern Ukraine has galvanised the EU including this eurozone member of 1.3 million people, a quarter of whom are ethnic-Russian.Military manoeuvres by Moscow on Estonia's border days ahead of the vote are further stoking deep concerns in Europe that the Kremlin could attempt to destabilise countries which were in its orbit during Soviet times."The current security situation will stay with us for a long period of time," Reform party Prime Minister Taavi Roivas said about Europe's worst standoff with Russia since the Cold War."This is not just bad weather, this is climate change." The 35-year-old premier, the EU's youngest, is part of a ...


Four dead in second rare shooting in South Korea SEOUL: Four people, including a policeman, were killed on Friday in the second shooting incident in two days in South Korea where gun crime is extremely rare.A 75-year-old man, armed with a hunting rifle, shot dead his brother, the brother's wife and a policeman who responded to an emergency call, Yonhap news agency said.The gunman then turned the weapon on himself.Police told Yonhap that the shooting in Hwaseong City, around 40 kilometres (25 miles) southwest ...

Australian PM Abbott bats away leadership speculation SYDNEY: Embattled Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott on Friday dismissed heated speculation he will be dumped by his conservative colleagues, saying he expected to lead his party to the next election.After reports that Abbott may not survive another challenge to his leadership, the prime minister was asked whether he expected to be in his job by the end of next week."Other people can obsess about this kind of insider gossip, but I'm certainly not going ...

Japan inflation lowest since war on falling prices began TOKYO: Japan's inflation rate has fallen to its lowest level since just after Tokyo launched a high-profile offensive aimed at conquering years of falling prices and tepid growth, data showed Friday.The disappointing figures -- weighed by weak consumer spending and falling energy prices -- challenge Bank of Japan chief Haruhiko Kuroda's claim that inflation is on an uptrend.They may also aggravate doubts over Tokyo's wider bid to kickstart the world's number three economy and reverse ...

US-led strikes on IS after group seizes 220 Christians BEIRUT: The US-led coalition carried out air strikes Thursday against the Islamic State group in northeastern Syria, where the militants have launched a new offensive and kidnapped 220 Assyrian Christians.The raids struck areas around the town of Tal Tamr in Hasakeh province, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said, without giving information on possible casualties.They followed the launch Monday of a new offensive by IS, which kidnapped the Assyrians as it seized territory around Tal ...

Kerry to meet Russian, Iranian FMs next week WASHINGTON: US Secretary of State John Kerry will meet next week with his Russian and Iranian counterparts seeking an end to fighting in Ukraine and to advance a nuclear deal with Iran, US officials said Thursday.His meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Geneva early next week would come days after Kerry accused Russian officials of lying "to my face" over Moscow's role in the conflict in Ukraine.State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said Kerry ...

US sees 'slight improvement' in Ukraine WASHINGTON: The United States noted Thursday that there had been a "slight improvement" in the fighting in Ukraine, but insisted the ceasefire was still being violated."There is a reduction we've seen over the past two days," State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said when asked if the truce was still being broken.She said that was "a good thing.""But there are still violations... I wouldn't go so far as to call it a positive step," Psaki told ...


 



 
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ICT 2014


Annual2013/14
Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
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