Russia's leading online social network was briefly banned on Friday, in a move dismissed as a "mistake" but which follows intensifying official pressure on the company.» Read More
UNITED NATIONS, Oct 24- Russia slammed leaks to the media from a closed-door Security Council briefing on Syria on Wednesday, saying diplomats and journalists involved should be stripped of U.N. accreditation fo r the release of confidential information.
*Brazil, Argentina grab US market share. Major importers in Asia, including South Korea, Taiwan and top buyer Japan, have turned away from the United States as U.S. corn prices soared to record highs this summer, buying feed from South America and producers in the Black Sea region.
*Copper ends near 6- week lows, gold slips below $1,700. NEW YORK, Oct 24- Brent crude fell for a seventh straight session on Wednesday, hitting 12- week lows after a sharp build in U.S. oil stockpiles, while most other commodities slid too as the dollar remained strong against the euro. Wheat futures hit one-month highs in Europe and a three-week peak in Chicago trade.
BEIRUT/ CAIRO- Syria said on Wednesday its military command was still studying a proposal for a holiday ceasefire with rebels- contradicting international mediator Lakhdar Brahimi's announcement that Damascus had agreed to a truce.
*First court verdict to thwart Gazprom's take-or-pay claim. *Gazprom paid $2.5 bln to European firms as part of pricing deal. PRAGUE/ MOSCOW, Oct 24- RWE Transgas, the Czech unit of Germany's RWE, has won a landmark dispute with Gazprom over gas contracts, after a court ruled for the first time that a company did not have to pay fines under a ``take-or-pay'' clause.
Oct 24- Thermo Fisher Scientific raised its full-year forecast for the second time this year as the world's largest laboratory equipment maker benefited from its presence in Asia, even as the weak U.S. and European economies dragged on its competitors.
PARIS, Oct 24- Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the former IMF chief whose French presidential ambitions were shattered by a sex scandal last year, is making a comeback in business and at conferences. The 63- year-old Strauss-Kahn was accused of trying to rape a New York hotel maid in May 2011.
*Warsaw wants to be at EU's decision-making core. WARSAW, Oct 24- Polish policymakers are shedding their doubts about joining the euro and starting to favour accession again because they believe the risks of being left outside the core of Europe outweigh the danger of joining a single currency still in the grip of crisis.
*France's Areva, Japan's Toshiba could benefit. BEIJING, Oct 24- China will approve a small number of new nuclear reactors before 2015 to be built only in coastal regions, the government said on Wednesday, as it unveiled a raft of measures to spur private investments in energy.
LONDON, Oct 24- Bankers will likely pick up $30- $50 million for their work on Russian state-owned oil group Rosneft's $55 billion takeover of TNK-BP, according to Freeman Consulting. Data from Thomson Reuters and Freeman showed fees average about $35 million on $10 billion deals, smaller than the TNK-BP.
*Wheat up as Ukraine to ban wheat exports in Nov.
*France's Areva, Japan's Toshiba among reactor builders that could benefit. BEIJING, Oct 24- China will restrict the number of new nuclear reactor approvals to a ``small amount'' before 2015, and will only allow them to be built in coastal regions, the government said on Wednesday.
KIEV, Ukraine-- When Ukraine's president opened up his home to TV cameras, he presented a cozy place with a small office just big enough for his grandchildren to play in.
NEW YORK-- A silver paperweight that President John F. Kennedy gave to Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara after the Cuban missile crisis sold for $95,500 at an auction Tuesday of McNamara's personal effects, Sotheby's said. McNamara, who died in 2009, served as the head of the Pentagon from 1961 to 1968, first for JFK and then for President Lyndon B. Johnson.
He says it will be at least another 12 or 18 months before the Virgin Galactic venture can offer paid space travel to adventurers. The founder of the Virgin Group met with students on his first visit to Poland on Wednesday, where he came to launch Virgin Academy, which will help young people kick start their own businesses.
*More countries follow lead set by Britain and Italy. LONDON, Oct 24- Fifty percent off the first three months of cancer medicine. ``Special offers'' on prescription medicines are all the rage in state-backed healthcare systems across Europe as governments struggle to balance the books.
MOSCOW-- Ratings agency Moody's has placed Rosneft and TNK-BP on review for downgrade following Rosneft's agreement to by the joint venture between BP and a group of Russian oligarchs. State-owned Rosneft on Monday unveiled a deal to buy TNK-BP, Russia's third-largest oil producer.
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates-- In back-to-back Asian summits this month, Iran's president made sure to carve out special time to look east. At one gathering in Azerbaijan, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad reminded the president of Kazakhstan about the vision of a railway linking the heart of Central Asia with Iran's warm ports.
PARIS-- The extent of the European car industry's troubles was laid bare Wednesday, when France's government tossed a financial lifeline to the continent's No. 2 automaker, Peugeot Citroen, and Ford said it would shut a plant in Belgium, cutting 9,500 jobs.
NEW YORK, Oct 23- Rosneft will eclipse the Western supermajors in crude output once the Russian state-controlled oil producer takes over rival TNK-BP, but despite its size, the company will hardly punch its weight in energy trading.