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Main news of August 17



* Emergencies officials said at least 20 people were killed and 138, including 10 children, injured in an attack by a suicide bomber in southern Russia's Ingushetia

* Russian President Dmitry Medvedev dismissed Ingushetia’s interior minister after a suicide attack in the republic’s largest city of Nazran killed at least 20 people

* The death toll from a major accident at Russia's largest hydropower plant in south Siberia early on Monday has risen to 10, with 14 people injured and dozens still missing, a local emergencies official said

* The president of Ingushetia, Yunus-Bek Yevkurov, who is recovering from an attempt on his life, accused the United States, Britain and Israel of seeking to destabilize the situation in the North Caucasus

* Russia's elite aerobatics group Russkiye Vityazi (Russian Knights) will not take part in the MAKS-2009 air show due to a fatal collision involving two of its Su-27 fighters, an Air Force spokesman said

* Two men and a woman who suffered severe burns following a fire caused by the collision of two Su-27 fighters near Moscow remain in a hospital in serious condition, a health official said

* An oil slick caused by an accident at a south Siberian hydroelectric station is moving down the Yenisei River, a local emergencies spokesman said

* Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov condemned the Czech Republic's decision to expel two Russian diplomats accused of spying

* The explosion of a natural gas pipeline near Khasavyurt in Russia's southern republic of Dagestan could have been caused by a bomb, a police official said



* The missing Arctic Sea vessel has been found and its crew taken to a Russian warship, the Russian defense minister said

* North Korea ordered its troops onto a state of full combat readiness as the United States and South Korea started military drills, Yonhap reported, citing the North's official KCNA agency

* Four Russian tourists went missing in Egypt's Red Sea resort of Marsa Alam while scuba diving, a local tourism official said

* Germany's chancellor, Angela Merkel, sent a letter of condolences to Russia's leader over a suicide blast in the North Caucasus, and a fatal hydropower plant accident in Siberia

* Authorities in Taiwan confirmed that 126 people died in floods and landslides caused by Typhoon Morakot last week, China's Xinhua news agency reported

* India and Russia have finished the design of a second unmanned lunar orbiter to be sent to the Moon in 2011-2012, the Indian Express newspaper said

* The future of China's giant panda is under serious threat as a result of economic development, a national paper reported, citing a WWF expert



* Russia and Libya have signed a contract to overhaul at least 145 T-72 Russian-made battle tanks in service with the Libyan Army, a senior government official said

* Russia introduced temporary restrictions on dairy products on Lithuanian companies after traces of antibiotics were discovered

* Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) will require 1,005 new civil airplanes costing an estimated $90 billion over the next 20 years, a Boeing marketing head said

* Crude oil producer Slavneft, ranked among Russia's top ten oil companies, posted a 9.2% drop, year-on-year, to $483.56 million in its 2008 U.S. GAAP net profits




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