Russia and Chile: US should end Cuba embargo

Dmitry MedvedevMoscow - Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Chilean President Michelle Bachelet have called for an end to the US embargo of the Caribbean island of Cuba, at a meeting in Moscow on Saturday.

Moscow and Santiago called for the integration of Cuba into the "regional multilateral structures," a joint communique from the two heads of state said.

Medvedev and Bachelet also signed agreements on military cooperation, energy-sector cooperation and space, the Interfax news agency reported.

Russian air force on higher readiness for N Korean rocket launch

Russian air force on higher readiness for N Korean rocket launch

Ukrainians protest against "Orange Forces"

Ukrainians protest against "Orange Forces" Kiev/Moscow - Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko for the first time suggested an openness to having early elections as around 50,000 opposition supporters protested in Kiev on Friday against the forces of the president's so-called Orange Revolution of 2004.

Yushchenko was ready "to make a decision about simultaneous (presidential and parliamentary) elections," the Interfax news agency quoted the Ukrainian head of state as saying, adding that: "I have no fear of early elections."

Russian authorities re-arrest suspect in journalist murder case

Russian authorities re-arrest suspect in journalist murder case Moscow  - Russian law enforcement has re-arrested a man who had only recently been cleared of charges in the 2006 murder of journalist Anna Politkovskaya.

The suspect, who previously worked in a Moscow agency fighting organized crime, has been charged with blackmailing a witness, reported the Interfax news agency on Thursday, citing sources in the investigation.

Abbas to hold more Moscow talks with Medvedev

Abbas to hold more Moscow talks with Medvedev Moscow - Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is to hold a further round of talks in Moscow next week with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, the Kremlin said Thursday.

Abbas would be in Moscow from Sunday through Wednesday, Interfax news agency quoted the Kremlin as saying. In similar talks last December Abbas was assured of support by Medvedev.

As well as holding talks with Fatah leader Abbas, Moscow has also maintained contacts with the Palestinian leader's rival Hamas faction, to the annoyance of Israel.

Leading Russian human rights activist attacked

Lev PonomaryovMoscow  - One of the leading human rights activists in Russia, Lev Ponomaryov, was attacked and seriously injured, a colleague said Tuesday.

The 67-year-old leader of the All-Russia movement "For Human Rights" was taken to hospital for treatment, the colleague told radio broadcaster Echo of Moscow.

He speculated that the attack was connected to Ponomaryov's human rights advocacy.

Initial investigations showed that Ponomaryov, who once served in the legislature, was seized by at least three attackers who severely beat him in front of his house.