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Main news of February 16

A summary of what happened in the past 24 hours.


* Russia, the United States and France have sent the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency a confidential letter expressing concern over Iran's move to begin enriching uranium to 20%

* Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko personally filed a lawsuit at Ukraine's Supreme Administrative Court contesting Viktor Yanukovych's victory in the country's presidential elections

* France carried out nuclear tests on its servicemen in the 1960s to study the effect of radiation on humans, according to a secret report uncovered by French media

* Libya has denied entry for Europeans after a dispute between Switzerland and Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi, the Arab-language Asharq Al-Awsat daily said


* Russian parliamentarians and U.S. congressmen will discuss plans to deploy elements of a U.S. missile defense system in Romania and Bulgaria, a senior Russian MP said

* Moscow authorities have allocated a plot of land on Poklonnaya Hill, a WWII memorial in the Russian capital's west for a Buddhist temple, a deputy Moscow mayor said

* The natural decline of Russia's population in 2009 went down by almost a third, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said

* Building work for the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games is not harming the environment, state construction corporation Olympstroy said

* Several countries are considering creating their national anti-aircraft defense systems using solely Russian weapons, a spokesman for Russia's leading interceptor missile producer said

* Two police officials in a city just outside Moscow are under investigation on suspicion of drug dealing, adding to a string of recent scandals over police abuses


* The Russian government intends to hold auctions in the coming months to offer stakes in state companies as part of a program to privatize government shareholdings, a Kremlin economic aide said

* Bulgaria will ask Russia for a loan of some 2 billion euros ($2.75 billion) to finance the construction of the Belene nuclear power plant over the next two years, the Bulgarian economy minister said

* The Russian government is planning to increase tenfold fines for firms manufacturing substandard products, a first deputy prime minister said

* Russia's police force is holding talks with France's Panhard General Defense on the purchase of VBL light armored vehicles, a Russian business daily reported


* None of the Russian pairs were able to grab a medal in figure skating at the Vancouver Olympics due to lack of control, Olympic champion Anton Sikharulidze said

* The Russian pairs who failed to win medals in figure skating at the Vancouver Olympic Games lacked control and skill, three-time Olympic champion Irina Rodnina said

* The Swiss national team took the lead in the gold medal count on the forth day of the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, securing two victories

* Andrei Arshavin has said he will understand if Arsenal teammate Cesc Fabregas decides to quit the club and return to European champions Barcelona

* Russian skier Sergei Shiryaev said he was displeased after doping officials in Olympic Vancouver woke up his teammates at six in the morning for blood tests

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