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Moldova seeks energy independence from Russia MOLDOVA: Moldova took a small but symbolic step towards easing its reliance on Russian gas imports on Wednesday when it inaugurated a pipeline that will bring in Romanian gas from next week. With fears mounting of a winter cut-off in gas supplies to Europe from Russia over the conflict in Ukraine, the prime ministers of Moldova and European Union member Romania formally unveiled the 43-km (27 miles) pipeline on the 23rd anniversary of Moldova's independence from the Soviet Union. The government led by Moldova's pro-Western prime minister, Iurie Leanca, signed up to closer ties with the EU earlier this year, defying warnings from Russia and joining ex-Soviet peers Ukraine and Georgia in pulling away from Moscow. "Today is a very important date for Moldova's energy independence," Leanca told a crowd of about 200 people among them EU Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger gathered in a field near the Moldovan village of ...

Russia says next aid convoy to Ukraine 'will not be the last' MOSCOW: Russia said on Wednesday that its next aid convoy to crisis-hit southeastern Ukraine would be followed by others despite Kiev's fears that they may be used to supply pro-Kremlin insurgents.Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said he expected Moscow to send a second truck convoy loaded with aid into the rebel-held territory "in the nearest future. And I am sure that it will not be the last because assistance there is needed in huge amounts."Copyright AFP ...
IMF's Lagarde put under investigation in French fraud case PARIS: International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde has been placed under formal investigation by French magistrates for negligence in a political fraud affair dating from 2008 when she was finance minister, her lawyer said on Wednesday.Lawyer Yves Repiquet told Reuters that Lagarde, who this week was questioned by magistrates in Paris for a fourth time under her existing status as a witness in the long-running saga, said the step was unfounded."We are appealing it," Repiquet ...
Poland to give more to poorest, defer defence spending hike WARSAW: Poland will raise the lowest state pensions and boost tax benefits for families, but it plans to defer an increase in defence spending until 2016, the prime minister said, in a move aimed at boosting the government's support before elections.Prime Minister Donald Tusk told parliament on Wednesday he will propose raising the lowest state pension by at least 36 zlotys ($11.3 US dollar) per month from 2015 and allow the poorest families to fully ...
Ukraine expects NATO to offer 'practical help' at summit: PM KIEV: Ukraine's Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said Wednesday that Kiev expected NATO to act to help Ukraine at a summit next week. "We expect our Western partners and the alliance to provide practical help and take crucial decisions at the summit in September," Yatsenyuk said at a government meeting."We need help," he said.Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2014 ...
WHO staffer with Ebola taken to Germany for treatment BERLIN: A World Health Organization (WHO) employee who has contracted Ebola arrived in Germany Wednesday, the first patient with the virus to be treated in the country, officials said.A plane carrying the patient -- a Senegalese epidemiologist who was infected in Sierra Leone -- touched down at the airport of the northern city of Hamburg and was to be taken to a hospital isolation ward.A convoy of police and fire brigade vehicles was to guard ...
Turkey ruling party meets to confirm Davutolgu as PM ANKARA: Turkey's ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) met Wednesday for a congress to confirm Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu to succeed Recep Tayyip Erdogan as party leader and premier when he becomes president this week.The vast congress, which is expected to muster some 40,000 people at an Ankara sports arena, is a key step in a tightly-choreographed process to ensure the succession goes smoothly.Erdogan -- who has ruled Turkey as premier for over a decade ...


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