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Friday, Apr 18th

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Ukraine crisis: Deal to 'de-escalate' agreed in Geneva

Ukrain agreementRussia, Ukraine, the US and the European Union have said that all sides have agreed to steps to "de-escalate" the crisis in eastern Ukraine.

Their foreign ministers were speaking at the end of talks between Russia, Ukraine, the EU and US in the Swiss city of Geneva.  Analysts say the outline agreement could stay economic sanctions the West was preparing to impose on Russia.

Ukraine has been in crisis since the toppling of its pro-Moscow president.

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Jews ordered to register in east Ukraine

Ukranian JewsJews in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk where pro-Russian militants have taken over government buildings were told they have to "register" with the Ukrainians who are trying to make the city become part of Russia, according to Israeli media.

Jews emerging from a synagogue say they were handed leaflets that ordered the city's Jews to provide a list of property they own and pay a registration fee "or else have their citizenship revoked, face deportation and see their assets confiscated," reported Ynet News, Israel's largest news website.

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Parents and principal say more than 100 Nigerian girls still missing

Nigeria armyThe principal of the Nigerian school and parents have refuted the military's claims that 121 of the 129 girls have been found, after being abducted on April 14.

Asabe Kwambura, the principal of the state-run school from which Islamist militant group Boko Haram abducted over a 100 school girls earlier this week, said that only 14 out of 129 students had escaped. Managing director of Borno Urban Development Board Yahaya Chibok also confirmed that only 14 girls were free.

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Kiev's grip on eastern Ukraine weakens as pro-Russians seize army vehicles

eastern UkraineFor Kiev's beleaguered army it was meant to be a display of strength. Early on Wednesday a column of six armoured personnel carriers trundled through the town of Kramatorsk, in eastern Ukraine. Some 24 hours earlier Ukrainian soldiers had recaptured a small disused aerodrome. Their next target appeared to be Slavyansk, the neighbouring town, occupied by a shadowy Russian militia. Was victory close?

The column didn't get far. At Kramatorsk's railway junction, next to an open-air market and a shop selling building materials, an angry crowd caught up with it. Next armed separatists dressed in military fatigues turned up too. Within minutes the Ukrainian soldiers gave up. Without a shot being fired they abandoned their vehicles. The pro-Russian gunmen grabbed them. They raised a Russian tricolour. They sat on top and went for a victory spin.

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Mexican mobile phone operator sues IBM for $2.5 billion

IBM suedMexican mobile phone operator Iusacell SA de CV sued IBM Corp on Wednesday, accusing the U.S. technology giant of making fraudulent representations that caused it to lose $2.5 billion in profits.

The lawsuit, filed in federal district court in New York, was heavily redacted, leaving many of the claims unclear. But the complaint centered on a contract that Iusacell said IBM induced it to enter into in Mexico.

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India court recognises transgender people as third gender

India recognizes third genderIndia's Supreme Court has recognised transgender people as a third gender, in a landmark ruling.

"It is the right of every human being to choose their gender," it said in granting rights to those who identify themselves as neither male nor female. It ordered the government to provide transgender people with quotas in jobs and education in line with other minorities, as well as key amenities.

According to one estimate, India has about two million transgender people.

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Ukraine's rebel crackdown begins, as Russia warns of civil war

Ukrain backlashA delayed start to Ukraine’s “anti-terrorist operation” against pro-Russian rebels appeared to give way to action Tuesday, with gunfire heard at an occupied airbase in the east of the country. The offensive came as Moscow warned Kyiv of the risk of tensions on the ground escalating into civil war.

Twenty-four hours after an ultimatum expired for armed men to lay down their guns, Ukrainian troops launched the strike against a group that had been in temporary control of the military landing strip in the eastern city of Kramotorsk.

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