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Iran's Zarif meets US, French counterparts to narrow nuclear gaps PARIS: Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Jawad Zarif met his U.S. and French counterparts separately on Friday to try to narrow gaps over Iran's nuclear programme, with just over two months left before a deadline to reach a deal.Iran and six world powers -- the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China -- have renewed their quest for an elusive nuclear accord after negotiators failed in November to meet another self-imposed deadline.Zarif and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met for about an hour in Paris to follow up on a lengthy meeting on Wednesday in Geneva in search of an agreement that is seen as crucial to reducing the risk of a wider Middle East war."We discussed ways to overcome problems and gaps," Zarif told Iran's state TV.A senior U.S. State Department official said the two men would see each other again in the coming weeks, but gave no ...

Dutch finance minister backs quantitative easing in newspaper interview AMSTERDAM: Dutch Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem has signaled he would not object to the European Central Bank (ECB) purchasing national bonds of members states.The ECB is widely expected to announce such a quantitative easing (QE) programme next week, in a bid to stave off deflation in the Eurozone, though details of how the programme will work are still undecided.The Dutch government has allied itself with German positions on monetary and fiscal policy throughout Europe's debt ...
Spain prosecutors seek 42-year jail term for ruling party ex-treasurer MADRID: Spanish anti-corruption prosecutors called Friday for a former treasurer of the ruling Popular Party to be jailed for 42 years for his role in an alleged kickback scheme at the heart of the party.High Court judge Pablo Ruz said in November he has concluded the "backbone" of his probe into the so-called "Gurtel" case and had enough evidence to try 43 people, including the former treasurer, Luis Barcenas, for crimes allegedly carried out between ...
Russia's Khodorkovsky says Putin's rule will end within a decade VILNIUS: Former tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky, freed last year from a Siberian prison, said on Friday Russian President Vladimir Putin's rule was likely to "cease to exist" within a decade. Khodorkovsky, whose oil empire once produced more crude than Qatar before he ran afoul of Putin, said the Kremlin's tightly controlled political system had lost the ability to transform itself and would be likely changed from the outside."Back when I was in jail, I was writing ...
Turkey says no-fly zone needed to protect Aleppo from Assad's forces ISTANBUL: Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Friday the Syrian city of Aleppo must be protected from bombardment by President Bashar al-Assad's forces before Turkey would consider stepping up its role in the US-led coalition against Islamic State. "The source of the problem is the Assad regime's brutality (We want a) no-fly zone so that Aleppo will be protected at least against the air bombardment and there will be no new refugees coming to ...
Greek leftist Syriza party widens lead over conservatives ATHENS: Greece's anti-bailout Syriza party has widened its lead over Prime Minister Antonis Samaras' co-ruling conservatives ahead of a Jan. 25 snap election, two polls showed on Friday.The election in Greece is being closely watched by financial markets, nervous that a Syriza victory might trigger a standoff with the country's European Union and IMF lenders and spark a new financial crisis that could push it out of the euro zone.A Rass survey conducted between Jan. ...
Kerry, Iran's Zarif meet again in Paris to narrow nuclear gaps PARIS: US Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian counterpart Mohammad Jawad Zarif met in Paris on Friday to try to narrow gaps over Iran's nuclear programme, their second session in three days with broader negotiations due to resume soon.Iran and six world powers - the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China - have renewed their quest for an elusive nuclear deal after negotiators failed for the second time in November to meet ...


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