*The international human rights organization Freedom House says Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych systematically eliminated any opposition before parliamentary elections scheduled for October 2012.
*An adoption deal between Russia and the United States drafted in the wake of a series of tragic episodes involving Russian children and their adoptive American families was submitted to the State Duma for ratification.
*When nine-month-old Anna Shkaptsova was reported missing in the western Russian city of Bryansk on March 11, police and volunteers spent almost the next three weeks in a desperate search for her. But investigators alleged that she had become just one more of the many children murdered every year by adults in Russia – in this case, by her father.
*Russian gas transit volume to Europe via Ukraine has fallen by half to 200 million cubic meters from the planned 400 million cu m in the past two days, Ukraine's Naftogaz energy firm Deputy Board Chairman Vadim Chuprun said.