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    A roundup of what has happened in the past 24 hours

    RUSSIA

    * Vladimir Putin was sworn in as Russian president on Monday in a glittering Kremlin ceremony that took place less than 24 hours after protesters opposed to his rule had battled police in downtown Moscow.

    * Russian police say they detained 300 people in downtown Moscow on Monday as demonstrators gathered to protest the return of Vladimir Putin to the Kremlin for a third term

    * Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday urged the Foreign Ministry to stick to the provisions of the new Russia-U.S. Start treaty and push for guaranties that the U.S. missile shield in Europe will not be aimed against national nuclear facilities

    WORLD

    * Francois Hollande, an opposition leader of the French Socialist Party, was elected France’s new president with more than 80 percent of ballots counted, French Interior Minister Claude Gueant said

    * Greek conservative party leader Antonis Samaras on Monday said he cannot form a coalition government, adding yet more uncertainty to the debt-ridden country's political situation

    * Polling stations opened across Syria on Monday for the country’s first multi-party parliamentary elections in half a century amid reports of ongoing violence that has jeopardized the UN-backed peace plan designed to end the 14-month bloody conflict

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