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    A roundup of what has happened in the past 24 hours

    WORLD

    * Ukraine's Constitutional Court has ruled the prolongation of a lease on Russia's naval base in the Crimea conforms to the country's Constitution, Foreign Minister Kostyantyn Hryshchenko said

    * Russia will pay higher rent for its naval base in Ukraine starting in 2017 and payments will be made in hard cash, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said

    * The deal between Moscow and Kiev on extending Russia's use of the Sevastopol naval base in Crimea amounts to "military occupation," former Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko said

    * In its relations with Kyrgyzstan, Moscow acts on the assumption that deposed President Kurbanbek Bakiyev has formally resigned, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said

    * The Kyrgyz interim government will hold a referendum on its new constitution on June 27 and parliamentary elections on October 10, the aide to the country's interim Deputy Prime Minister said

    * Reports of anti-Russian sentiment were created intentionally to destabilize the situation in the country, Kyrgyz interim Deputy Prime Minister Almazbek Atambayev said

    * Ousted Kyrgyz president Kurmanbek Bakiyev is to hold a news conference in Minsk on April 23, a national press center official said

    Ahmad Bakiyev, the brother of ousted Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev, has gone missing in the south of Kyrgyzstan, local media said

    * Armenian President Serzh Sargysan signed a decree putting a hold on ratification of Armenian-Turkish protocols

    * Russia has called for the rapid resumption of six-party negotiations on the North Korean nuclear weapons program, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said

    * Iran intends to produce missile defense systems similar to Russia's S-300 system, the county's PressTV channel said

    * Ukraine's ultranationalist Svoboda (Freedom) party has said it would call mass rallies if Stepan Bandera is stripped of his title as a national hero.

    * The ruling coalition of the Armenian National Assembly said on Thursday it would take Armenian-Turkish protocols off the parliamentary agenda, the parliament's press service said.

    * Ukraine will increase uranium output and build a factory for nuclear fuel production, President Viktor Yanukovych said

    RUSSIA

    * Moscow is deeply concerned with the plans of the United States to deploy Patriot missiles in Poland near the Russian border, the Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman said

    * Russia has no plans to build new military facilities anywhere in the world similar to its naval base in Ukraine's Crimea, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said

    * The lower house of the Russian parliament, the State Duma, will hold on April 27 an additional plenary session on the ratification of a Russian-Ukrainian naval base deal, the head of the State Duma's foreign affairs committee said

    * The Moscow Garage Center for Contemporary Culture opened Mark Rothko's first exhibition ever staged in Moscow, featuring over a dozen paintings inspired by a total supremacy of color and light.

     

    * Three of the Russian Navy's Pacific Fleet warships successfully carried out the simultaneous delivery of supersonic cruise missiles during tactical maneuvers in the Sea of Japan

    BUSINESS

    * Russia's launch of its first bonds on international markets since the 1998 crisis was a success, and it will not issue any more this year, the finance minister said /a>

    * Russia sold Eurobonds worth $5.5 billion for the first time since the country defaulted on its obligations in 1998

    * The new gas deal with Russia offering Ukraine a 30% discount on the price of Russian natural gas supplies will help Naftogaz to avoid bankruptcy, the Ukrainian national energy company said

    * Russia and Ukraine will step up efforts to create a consortium on modernizing the Ukrainian gas transportation system, Russian Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko said

    * Ukraine secured a 30% discount for Russian natural gas, expected to cost Russia $40 bln in the next 10 years, in exchange for extending the lease of a Russian naval base, a business paper reported

    * The revisions of gas contracts with Ukraine will not lead to corrections in contracts with other countries, Russian Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko said

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