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Main News of April 2

© RIA NovostiMain News of April 2
Main News of April 2 - Sputnik International
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A roundup of what has happened in the past 24 hours.

WORLD

*The Syrian authorities should “make the first step” towards restoring peace in the country by pulling troops and tanks out of rebellious cities and towns, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.

*More IAEA inspectors should be send to Iran, Russian Foreign Ministry Sergei Lavrov said.

*The U.S. Justice Department has called for a sentence of 30 years imprisonment for convicted Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, his lawyer Albert Dayan said, ahead of sentencing on April 5.

 

RUSSIA

*At least 31 people were killed after a Russian passenger plane crashed whilst trying to make an emergency landing shortly after take-off near the western Siberian city of Tyumen.

*The party that has dominated Russia’s political landscape under Vladimir Putin for a decade is in disarray following a stunning nosedive in its popularity this winter and is scrambling to “reinvent” itself to cope with fierce future competition, analysts and party officials said.

*Russian Prime Minister and president-elect Vladimir Putin has no plans to form any new special service divisions, including so-called national guard, his spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

*A firefighting helicopter has been dispatched to help put out a blaze on the 67th floor of a skyscraper under construction in Moscow.

*More than half of Russian drivers admit to reading and sending text messages when driving, losing only to Italians on the popularity of the dangerous habit, according to a poll.

*Russian human rights and gay activists hit out on Monday at a law banning the promotion of homosexuality that has already entered into force in the country’s second city of St. Petersburg and could soon be approved nationwide.

 

BUSINESS

*The average price for Russia's main crude oil export blend, Urals, reached a record level of $122.60 per barrel in March 2012, Finance Ministry analyst Alexander Sakovich said.

*Russia has pledged an 11-percent gas discount for Bulgaria in exchange for faster progress on the construction of the Bulgarian leg of the South Stream gas pipeline, Bulgarian Economy and Energy Minister Delyan Dobrev said.

 

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