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Kerry, Iran's Zarif set for Paris nuclear talks PARIS: US Secretary of State John Kerry and his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Jawad Zarif will meet for talks in Paris on Friday on Iran's nuclear policy, Iranian and U.S. sources said."Minister Zarif and Secretary Kerry are highly likely to meet this afternoon in Paris," an Iranian diplomatic source told Reuters. Kerry is in the French capital to honour the 17 victims killed in last week's shooting in France, and Zarif is due to meet French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius later in the day.A senior State Department official confirmed the two men would meet on Friday following talks this week in Geneva.Iran and six world powers -- the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China -- have renewed their quest for an elusive nuclear deal - seen as crucial to reducing the risk of a wider Middle East war - after negotiators failed for the second time in November to ...

Cricket hero Ranatunga vows Sri Lanka ports clean-up COLOMBO: World Cup winning cricket skipper Arjuna Ranatunga began work Friday as Sri Lanka's ports and shipping minister after being appointed to new President Maithripala Sirisena's cabinet.The 51-year-old Ranatunga, dubbed Captain Cool after winning the 1996 World Cup, vowed to end a culture of backhanders that has given the island's ports an unenviable reputation as a hotbed of corruption."I have a big responsibility to clean up this place," the portly Ranatunga said on his first ...
India court grants Italian marine 3 more months at home NEW DELHI: India's top court Wednesday allowed an Italian marine detained for the 2012 killing of two fishermen another three months at home to recover from heart surgery amid a diplomatic row over the case.India's Supreme Court had originally refused to extend Massimiliano Latorre's leave after allowing him to spend four months in Italy to recover from cerebral ischaemia -- a restricted blood supply that can lead to a stroke.Latorre was due to return to ...
Sri Lanka's former president Rajapakse faces graft complaint COLOMBO: Sri Lanka's Marxist opposition party has filed a corruption complaint against former president Mahinda Rajapakse and his family and asked the anti-graft body to prevent them leaving the country, a spokesman said Wednesday.The JVP, or People's Liberation Front, has lodged the complaint against Rajapakse, his legislator son Namal and two brothers - Basil and Gotabhaya - who held powerful positions in the former president's administration that was ousted after last week's elections.The election was ...
Chinese President to pay state visit to UK amid Hong Kong tensions LONDON: Chinese President Xi Jinping will travel to Britain on a state visit later this year, a Foreign Office minister said on Tuesday, as he fended off lawmakers' accusations that London was reluctant to confront Beijing over Hong Kong.Hugo Swire, a junior minister, made the disclosure in parliament after being criticised by lawmakers for choosing not to summon the Chinese ambassador over China's refusal to allow them to visit Hong Kong.Swire said he'd spoken to ...
Iran says Saudi will suffer more from oil price slide TEHRAN: President Hassan Rouhani said Tuesday that Iran would withstand the economic pain of plummeting oil prices, with Saudi Arabia and Kuwait likely to suffer more from the slump.Iran has been among the oil exporting countries worst hit by the sliding price of crude, given its current budget was based on sales at $100 per barrel.In a draft plan for the next financial year starting March 21, Rouhani's government cut the projected sale price to ...
Death toll from toxic liquor in India hits 31, dozens ill LUCKNOW: A batch of home-brew liquor has killed at least 31 people in northern India, with more than 100 others ill in hospital, police said Tuesday, in the latest incident of alcohol poisoning in the country.The figure jumped from Monday's toll of 14 after more people died in hospital after drinking the toxic alcohol in a village on the outskirts of Lucknow, the capital of Uttar Pradesh state."Till now 25 deaths have been reported from ...


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ICT 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-1.703 bln
Exports $2.156 bln
Imports $3.859 bln
WeeklyFebruary 26, 2015
Reserves $15.944 bln