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South Korea state railway chief to visit North SEOUL: South Korea said Sunday it had approved a trip by the head of its state-run railway corporation to North Korea to attend an international conference. Korea Railway (KORAIL) chief Choi Yeon-Hye will visit the North from Thursday to April 28, said Seoul's Unification Ministry which handles cross-border affairs. She was invited by the Organisation for Co-Operation between Railways to attend its meeting for railway chiefs to be held in the North Korean capital Pyongyang, it added. The rare visit to the North by a senior Seoul official follows a period of elevated military tension.Through February and March, the North test-fired dozens of short-range missiles as well as two mid-range missiles, and the two rivals exchanged artillery fire into the sea across their disputed maritime border.The tensions coincided with Seoul's annual military drills with Washington that ended on Saturday and are habitually slammed by Pyongyang as rehearsals for invasion.The isolated ...

Japan defence chief puzzled by Russian warplanes TOKYO: Japan's defence minister said Sunday there have been an "abnormal" number of flights by Russian military aircraft close to Japanese islands in recent days.The country's air defence force scrambled fighter jets for seven days in a row through Saturday after spotting Russian military planes flying along the Japanese archipelago, according to the defence ministry.On Friday six Russian TU-95 bombers were seen flying two by two, with one pair moving around the Okinawan islands and ...
Rajaratnam's brother loses bid to dismiss insider trading charges NEW YORK: Rengan Rajaratnam, the younger brother of imprisoned hedge fund manager Raj Rajaratnam, on Friday lost a bid to dismiss some of the insider trading charges leveled against him last year.US District Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald in Manhattan ruled that the indictment adequately alleged the essential elements of the crimes charged.Buchwald agreed that two securities fraud counts were "internally inconsistent" with a conspiracy charge contained in the indictment.But she withheld ruling on whether to ...
Iran says settlement on New York skyscraper 'illegal' TEHRAN: Iran's Foreign Ministry dismissed as "illegal" plans by US prosecutors to sell an Iran-linked Manhattan skyscraper in the largest terror-related seizure to date, media reports said Saturday.Ministry spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham said in a statement late Friday the settlement lacked "legal credibility" and was influenced by "anti-Iran political propaganda," according to the reports in Iranian media.The settlement was unveiled on Thursday and has been approved by a federal judge.Its main target is a 36-storey building ...
South Korea ferry captain arrested, divers spot bodies JINDO: Investigators on Saturday arrested the captain accused of abandoning the South Korean ferry that capsized three days ago with 476 people on board, as divers finally accessed the submerged vessel and spotted bodies inside.Lee Joon-Seok and two of his crew were taken into police custody in the early hours of the morning, charged with negligence and failing to secure the safety of passengers in violation of maritime law.The 69-year-old captain has been severely criticised ...
William and Kate hit the beach on Sydney visit SYDNEY: Britain's Prince William and his wife Kate got to grips with Australia's beach and bush lifestyles on Friday, watching a life-saving display and a sheep-shearing demonstration as part of their tour Down Under with baby son George.The young royals have received a warm welcome in Sydney, the first stop of their 10-day Australian tour, with thousands flocking to their official reception at the Sydney Opera House on Wednesday.Thousands more craned for a glimpse of ...
Third officer, not captain, at helm when South Korean ferry capsized: investigator SEOUL: The third officer was at the helm of a South Korean ferry when it capsized on Wednesday with 475 people on board, an investigating prosecutor told a news conference on Friday, and the captain may not even have been on the bridge at the time."He may have been off the bridge ... and the person at the helm at the time was the third officer," the investigator said.Copyright Reuters, 2014 ...

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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 $-1.664 bln
Exports $1.966 bln
Imports $3.630 bln
WeeklyJanuary 25, 2015
Reserves $15.019 bln