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  • BURABAI, Kazakhstan, May 29- The Eurasian Economic Union signed a free trade agreement with Vietnam on Friday, the first such deal struck by the Moscow- led body with a third party as it seeks to boost its presence on Asian markets. The EEU, which includes Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, was launched in January to promote trade and economic...

  • Alexandrov, 28, says he's a Russian soldier who was captured in east Ukraine after being sent there on active duty with Russian special forces to help separatists fighting Kiev. Yet Russian President Vladimir Putin, in the face of widespread evidence to the contrary, has repeatedly said there are no Russian soldiers in Ukraine- only volunteers who have gone to...

  • MOSCOW— Russia's ruble is on a roller-coaster. After being the world's second worst-performing currency against the dollar last year, it is among the best in 2015.. Nikita Filippov, co-owner of a St. Petersburg- based craft brewery, says it was a godsend.

  • *Crops grow from Gulf to Russia in advanced greenhouses. AMSTERDAM, May 28- From the rooftops of Amsterdam to the expanses of Kazakhstan, Dutch technology is helping food producers to meet the needs of both gourmets and growing populations facing uncertain supplies. One of the most densely populated countries in the world, the Netherlands has long learnt to...

  • MOSCOW, May 28- Russia's largest lender Sberbank defied expectations for a sharper slump in first-quarter profit as strong commission income and its access to cheaper funding helped it to outperform rivals. Sberbank holds about 30 percent of Russia's total banking sector assets and Russians are used to trusting the bank with their savings since the Soviet...

  • The West has accused Russia of using gas as a tool to increase its political influence over countries like Serbia. Russia last year scrapped plans for another pipeline in southern Europe— that was to pass through Serbia— amid a deepening crisis with the West over Ukraine. Serbia has refused to join Western sanctions against Russia over its policies in Ukraine.

  • *Russia to meet OPEC next week, likely to stick to strategy. MOSCOW/ LONDON, May 27- As Russia prepares to meet OPEC next week, a briefing paper from a Moscow think tank has shed light on how the government was warned against cutting oil output late last year even though global prices were plummeting. "If Russia cuts output, OPEC will take our market share in Europe," a team...

  • Putin expects sanctions against Russia to be lifted Tuesday, 26 May 2015 | 8:02 AM ET

    MOSCOW— Russian President Vladimir Putin has encouraged businesses to expand domestically before Western nations lift economic sanctions, allowing once again the sale of many foreign goods in Russia. Russia's economy is expected to contract 3.8 percent this year in the World Bank's estimates, battered by the sanctions and capital outflows.

  • Europe, Canada face rising terror threat Monday, 25 May 2015 | 8:22 AM ET
    ISIS fighter, North American ISIS fighter, Islamic State

    Developed countries across Europe are becoming more vulnerable to terrorism, mostly due to the rising power of the Islamic State and other Islamist extremist groups.

  • WARSAW, May 24- Poles voted for a president on Sunday in a run-off that is too close to call but has already sounded a warning for the ruling Civic Platform as it looks to re-election later in the year. Originally seen as a shoo-in for a second five-year term, incumbent Bronislaw Komorowski finds himself neck and neck with his conservative challenger, Andrzej Duda,...

  • WARSAW, May 24- Poles voted for a president on Sunday in a run-off that is too close to call but has already sounded a warning for the ruling Civic Platform as it looks to re-election later in the year. Originally seen as a shoo-in for a second five-year term, incumbent Bronislaw Komorowski finds himself neck and neck with his conservative challenger, Andrzej Duda,...

  • MOSCOW, May 23- Russia would adopt a tough position if Ukraine decided not to pay off debts owed to Moscow by its previous government, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said in an interview broadcast by Russian TV on Saturday. Russia has spoken out against a new Ukrainian law allowing a moratorium on foreign debt repayments, threatening to take Ukraine to...

  • Shake Shack extends run on "chicken shack" talk Friday, 22 May 2015 | 2:04 PM ET

    NEW YORK— Shake Shack's shares surged to another record high Friday, fueled in part by speculation that the hamburger chain could be thinking about dishing out chicken. Last month, a unit apparently tied to Shake Shack's parent company applied to trademark the words "Chicken Shack" for chicken sandwiches. Earlier this month, Shake Shack Inc. reported...

  • BRUSSELS/ OSLO, May 22- Norway has overtaken Russia as western Europe's top gas supplier, data from state firms shows, indicating the European Union's drive to reduce its dependence on Russian energy is bearing fruit. Norway exported 29.2 billion cubic metres to western Europe in the first quarter of this year, figures from Norwegian state operator Gassco show,...

  • Russia threatens block on Google, Twitter, Facebook Friday, 22 May 2015 | 12:24 PM ET
    An anti-Putin protester waves a Facebook flag in Moscow. Russia threatens to block Google, Twitter and Facebook for allegedly violating its blogging laws.

    Google, Twitter and Facebook face being blocked in Russia after being warned against violating the country's controversial blogging laws.

  • This country's economy may shrink by 10% in 2015 Friday, 22 May 2015 | 8:34 AM ET

    Ukraine may have dropped out of the headlines but its economic troubles are worsening as it continues to battle with separatists—and bondholders.

  • EU embrace of eastern partners turns lukewarm Friday, 22 May 2015 | 4:19 AM ET

    The two-day meeting in Riga underlined that the EU's relations with Russia's neighbors in Eastern Europe are moving on different tracks, with only three of them— Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova— truly pursuing deeper integration. Belarus and Armenia are seeking only limited cooperation after joining Russia's Eurasian Economic Union and Azerbaijan showed...

  • Eurovision: Geopolitical cracks beneath cheesy songs Friday, 22 May 2015 | 1:02 AM ET

    2015 marks the 60th anniversary of the infamous Eurovision Song Contest, in which Australia will be making a debut guest appearance.

  • *Islamic State fighters have scored twin successes in Syria and Iraq, taking full control of the historic Syrian city of Palmyra and overrunning Iraqi government defences east of Ramadi on Thursday. *Islamic State militants have seized the last border crossing between Syria and Iraq controlled by the Syrian government, a Syrian human rights group said on...

  • The new arms race in the South China Sea Thursday, 21 May 2015 | 1:19 PM ET
    An Indonesian naval vessel.

    Defense spending among nations in the South China Sea region is rising, but most of it isn't going to the United States.