Russia

Ukraine forces kill up to five rebels; Russia starts drill near border

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SLAVIANSK, Ukraine/ST PETERSBURG, Russia - U krainian forces killed up to five pro-Moscow rebels on Thursday as they closed in on the separatists' military stronghold in the east, and Russia launched army drills near the border in response, raising fears its troops would invade. | Video

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Exclusive - Obama plans to call EU leaders in Russia sanctions push: sources

WASHINGTON - U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to speak to several European leaders on Friday to try to nudge the EU toward fresh sanctions against Russia over Ukraine, sources familiar with the matter said.

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Exclusive: Obama plans to call EU leaders in Russia sanctions push-sources

WASHINGTON - U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to speak to several European leaders on Friday to try to nudge the EU toward fresh sanctions against Russia over Ukraine, sources familiar with the matter said.

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Ukraine forces kill up to five rebels; Russia starts drill near border

SLAVIANSK, Ukraine/ST PETERSBURG, Russia - Ukrainian forces killed up to five pro-Moscow rebels on Thursday as they closed in on the separatists' military stronghold in the east, and Russia launched army drills near the border in response, raising fears its troops would invade. | Video

Germany proposes joint U.S., EU, Russia trip to Ukraine

BERLIN - The United States, the European Union and Russia should make a joint high-level trip to hotspots in Ukraine with local officials to signal political backing to the April 17 Geneva agreement, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier says.

Germany proposes joint U.S., EU, Russia trip to Ukraine

BERLIN - The United States, the European Union and Russia should make a joint high-level trip to hotspots in Ukraine with local officials to signal political backing to the April 17 Geneva agreement, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier says.

S&P cuts Russia's foreign currency ratings

MOSCOW - Credit agency Standard & Poor's cut Russia's foreign currency sovereign ratings on Friday, in a move that underscores risks from President Vladimir Putin's policy of intervention in Ukraine.

Germans wary of Merkel's tough line on Russia

BERLIN - In Berlin's immaculate Treptow Park, a towering statue of a Soviet solder holding a German child on his arm and stamping on a Nazi swastika reminds Germans of the debt they owe Russians.

UPDATE 1-Russia's Rosneft says Gazprom hinders its LNG project

* Sechin says Gazprom, Shell deny Rosneft, Exxon access to pipeline (Adds detail, quotes)

Germans wary of Merkel's tough line on Russia

BERLIN - In Berlin's immaculate Treptow Park, a towering statue of a Soviet solder holding a German child on his arm and stamping on a Nazi swastika reminds Germans of the debt they owe Russians.

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Obama wraps up Japan visit after security pledge but no trade deal

TOKYO - U.S. President Barack Obama wrapped up a state visit to Japan on Friday during which he assured America's ally that Washington would come to its defence, but failed to clinch a trade deal key to both his "pivot" to Asia and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's economic reforms. | Video