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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

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Putin foe Navalny avoids detention during new Russian trial

MOSCOW - A Russian court rejected a request by prosecutors to put Kremlin foe Alexei Navalny behind bars during a second trial on theft charges, leaving one of President Vladimir Putin's most prominent critics under house arrest.

Russia 11:51am EDT

Obama reaffirms commitment to Japan on tour of Asia allies

TOKYO - U.S. President Barack Obama assured ally Japan on Thursday that Washington was committed to its defense, including of tiny isles at the heart of a row with China, but denied he had drawn any new "red line" and urged peaceful dialogue over the islands. | Video

Politics, Japan, China 9:12am EDT

Egypt's army says has 'complete control' over Sinai Peninsula

CAIRO - The Egyptian military said on Thursday it had gained "complete control over the situation" in the Sinai Peninsula, where Islamist insurgents have been carrying out attacks against security forces for several months.

Egypt 11:49am EDT

Boy and girl on Korean ferry drowned with life jackets tied together

SEOUL - A boy and girl trapped in a sinking South Korean ferry with hundreds of other high school students tied their life jacket cords together, a diver who recovered their bodies said, presumably so they wouldn't float apart. | Video

South Korea, 7:12am EDT

Exclusive: EU considers ban on deals with banks in Crimea

BRUSSELS - The European Union may ban transactions with financial institutions in Crimea as part of its response to the annexation of the Ukrainian peninsula by Russia last month, an EU document obtained by Reuters showed.

Russia 9:33am EDT

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