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Main news of February 16

© RIA NovostiMain news
Main news - Sputnik International
A roundup of what has happened in the past 24 hours


* U.S. Vice President Joe Biden will make an official visit to Russia in the second week of March, the White House said in a statement

* Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman called the fact of two Iranian warships heading to the Mediterranean Sea through the Suez Canal a "provocation"

* Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah called for his military personnel to be ready for war on Israeli territory

* At least 365 people were killed and 5,500 injured in Egypt's street protests against the government, the Health Ministry said

* Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said he was unconcerned about a trial on his alleged sex relationship with an under-aged Moroccan girl

* Russian and U.S. generals will meet in Lisbon in June to discuss cooperation between the two countries in fighting nuclear terrorism, the head of the Russian Military Commanders Club said

* Thousands of people calling for political reform have spent the night on the main square in Bahrain's capital of Manama, regional media said


* The deployment of advanced medium-range S-400 Triumf missile systems on the disputed Kuril Islands would be excessive and potentially dangerous as they can reach Japanese territory, a Russian military commander said

* Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said that gay parades in Moscow are inadmissible, ruining hopes of the Russian gay community for holding sanctioned sexual minority events

* Russia may introduce drug testing for students and schoolchildren in 2011, State Antidrug Committee deputy head Oleg Trifonov said

* The Russian judge who sentenced former tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky to six more years in prison at his second trial has said he will not seek the prosecution of an aide who claimed the verdict was ordered from above

* A law regulating the equality of the sexes and addressing domestic and sexual violence may appear in Russia soon, the country's health and social development minister told a UN commissioner

* Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin reprimanded the chief of the customs service over video footage of a New Year's party in a customs office in the Far East

* Officers from Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) raided a police station in the Moscow region over alleged links to illegal gambling


* Russian gas export monopoly Gazprom has acquired 33% of Italian gas company Eni's shares in Libya's Elephant oil and gas production field project worth $178 million, Gazprom head Alexei Miller said

* Russian gas export monopoly Gazprom has given access to its gas transportation system to all independent gas producers, the company's chief Alexei Miller said

* Russia received from British oil giant BP assurances in the security of property rights in creating a Rosneft-BP alliance under international law, Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov said

* Russia is to cut spending but is not withdrawing from the trans-Balkan Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline project, oil pipeline monopoly Transneft spokesman Igor Dyomin said

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