Main news of April 9

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RUSSIA

* Russian air-defense systems deployed in the Far East are capable of shooting down missiles of the type recently launched by North Korea, the Air Force chief of staff said

* Russia will supply advanced S-400 air defense systems to Belarus under a recent agreement to create an integrated air defense network, a senior Air Force official said

* Two members of a central Russian far-right teenage gang have been charged with the murder of a Chinese national, investigators said

* Russia's foreign minister said on Thursday that there is no link between the international dispute over Iran's nuclear program, and Russia-U.S. differences on Washington's missile defense plans for Europe

* Russia's foreign minister said on Thursday that since the meeting between President Dmitry Medvedev and U.S. President Barack Obama, bilateral dialogue has changed dramatically

* Georgian coast guards have released a cargo ship with a crew of 14 Russians on board, the Sovfracht maritime bulletin said

WORLD

* Moldova's Liberal Democratic Party will no longer hold protest rallies on Chisinau's central square near the government building, the party leader said* Moldova's Liberal Democratic Party will no longer hold protest rallies on Chisinau's central square near the government building, the party leader said

* The Georgian opposition said at a large protest rally in Tbilisi on Thursday that President Mikheil Saakashvili should take his "last chance" to resign in order to ensure a peaceful change of power

* Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki arrived in Moscow on Thursday ahead of Friday meetings with President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin

* A Georgian presidential spokesman dismissed on Thursday allegations that President Mikheil Saakashvili had planned a terrorist act in which his wife would die to ensure he won January 2008 elections

* Italy's Cabinet allocated on Tuesday 70 million euro ($92 million) to deal with the aftermath of the powerful quake that hit central Italy early on Monday, the country's prime minister said

* The fourth round of inter-Palestinian dialogue will begin on April 26 in Cairo, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas announced after talks with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in Cairo

* Moldovan authorities have video footage proving that Romanians were involved in the riots in Chisinau on Tuesday, a senior Moldovan MP said

* Damage to the parliament building in Moldova following Tuesday's riots in Chisinau has been estimated at $40 million, the parliamentary speaker said

* New UN Security Council sanctions against North Korea could embitter Pyongyang and push it to take inappropriate measures, the Russian Foreign Ministry said

* Around 29,000 people have been left homeless following the April 6 earthquake in the mountainous region of Abruzzo in central Italy, the regional governor said

* Moldova has demanded the extradition of a businessman detained in Ukraine recently, a source in the Prosecutor General's Office said

* The European Court of Human Rights announced on Thursday it had ordered Russia to pay 282,000 euros ($375,000) in compensation to the relatives of people who went missing in Chechnya between 2001-2003

* Tens of thousands of demonstrators began a rally on Thursday outside Georgia's parliament in Tbilisi, demanding President Mikheil Saakashvili's resignation

* Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said Thursday he would like to see dealings between Belarus and Russia become clearer and more transparent

* Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko has told ambassadors of G8 countries that he plans to dismiss Yulia Tymoshenko's government, Kommersant-Ukraina business daily reported

* A U.S. warship arrived in Somali waters on Thursday to assist in freeing a captain seized by Somali pirates after a hijack attempt failed when the ship's unarmed crew fought back

BUSINESS

* The Ukrainian president said on Thursday the talks on the Euro-Asian oil transport corridor, a project set to pump Caspian oil to Europe bypassing Russia, are in their final stage

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