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Main news of March 9

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

WORLD

* Forces loyal to Libyan leader Muammar GaddafI launched further air strikes on a major oil export terminal held by rebels, Al Jazeera said

* A Libyan Learjet plane, used to carry VIPs, crossed Greek-controlled airspace and landed in Cairo, a spokesman for the Greek National Defense General Staff said

* Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, surrounded by his entourage of security personnel, made a surprise appearance at a hotel hosting foreign correspondents in Tripoli

* Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal said his country rejects any interference in its domestic affairs and would "cut off" any accusing finger

* Libya is confronting an attempt by the Al Qaeda terrorist network to destabilize the situation there and in another Arab countries, Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi said in an interview with the Turkish TRT media holding

* Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi offered a half million-dinar reward ($410,900) for the capture of a top opposition leader, former justice minister Mustafa Abdul-Jalil, Libyan TV-channel said

* Space shuttle Discovery has landed at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida completing its 39th and final flight, NASA said

RUSSIA

* Investigators found that a plane that crashed in the south of Russia on Saturday attempted to descend too fast, possibly because of an airspeed indicator failure, Kommersant daily said

* A suspected bomb went off at a bus stop near the Federal Security Service (FSB) academy in Moscow, the National Antiterrorist Committee said

* U.S. Vice President Joe Biden said that Russia's membership in the World Trade Organization was a top priority for the United States which also hoped to cancel a trade restriction provision

* Russia is not considering a swap deal with the United States over alleged Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout and those convicted of spying for the United States, a source in the Russian security services said

BUSINESS

* Russia will supply over 100 million euros ($139mn) worth of equipment for the international ITER thermonuclear reactor, under construction in south France, the state nuclear corporation Rosatom reported

* Russia's state-run arms exporter, Rosoboronexport, said it expects to make up to $9.5 billion in arms sales this year

* Russia's state-controlled gas giant Gazprom signed a contract to buy the property of RUSIA Petroleum, the license holder of the giant East Siberian Kovykta gas field, RUSIA Petroleum's Oleg Smetanin said

* Russia's flagship airline Aeroflot will buy eight Boeing 777 long haul airliners for $2.168 billion at catalog prices, Aeroflot said

* Corbiere Holdings Limited, a subsidiary of Russia's largest nickel maker Norilsk Nickel which is carrying out a $4.5 billion buyback program, will complete it on Wednesday having acquired 7.2% of Norilsk's shares from minority shareholders, Norilsk Nickel said

* VimpelCom Ltd. said it had completed a $65-million deal to buy Millicom Holding Laos B.V, which owns 78% of the Laotian mobile operator Millicom Lao Co., as part of its Southeast Asian expansion plan


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