Main news of December 29

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RUSSIA

* President Dmitry Medvedev ordered the Foreign Ministry to provide aid to Russians in the Gaza Strip and evacuate them if necessary amid Israel's military attack on the Palestinian region

* Russia's government earmarked 10 trillion rubles ($340 billion) for an anti-crisis package which is comparable to the country's annual budget, the government's press office said

* Medieval prince Alexander Nevsky was chosen Russia's symbol in a nationwide television vote, which also named Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin the third greatest historical figure

* Russia's offer to the U.S. on joint use of the Gabala radar station it leases from Azerbaijan is still on the table, a first Russian deputy foreign minister said

* Paramedics failed to give the correct treatment to a collapsed Russian hockey star, Alexei Cherepanov, who died after a game in October, investigators said

WORLD

* Israel continued airstrikes on suspected militant strongholds in the Gaza Strip, which have killed so far 310 Palestinians, local medical services reported

* The Israeli army said it had closed the border areas adjacent to the Gaza Strip, cutting off access to journalists as it massed tanks in preparation for a possible ground assault

* Georgia is moving tanks and armored vehicles closer to the border with South Ossetia, the Georgian breakaway republic said

* The head of the Palestinian National Authority called for a meeting with all Palestinian political parties to discuss the situation in Gaza, the Palestinian news agency Wafa said

* Fourteen schoolchildren were killed along with five adults in a suicide car bombing in Afghanistan's eastern Khost province, Afghan officials said

 

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