Main news of August 16



* The United States will not call for the removal of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad but will continue pushing for sanctions from countries with more direct economic ties to Damascus, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said

* Violence against protestors in Syria is the country’s domestic affair and any foreign interference in the subject cannot be justified, Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said

* Ukraine’s prime minister said  that a deal like the one Belarus has struck with the Russian state-run gas giant Gazprom would be unacceptable for Kiev

* Moscow and Tehran will cooperate in ensuring their national security, Russian Security Council head Nikolai Patrushev said



* Russian prosecutors have sent to court a case against the head of a Russian-US company on charges on defrauding the state of $113 million, Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Marking said

* Only 28 percent of Russians believe the country’s police force will improve following a much-hyped police reform, a survey showed

* The Russian military will use new MiG-35D multirole fighters as an equal to the U.S. F-35 fighters, the Air Force chief said



* Russia’s state-run United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) expects to strike deals to sell 100 Sukhoi Superjet and MS-21 passenger jets during the current air show near Moscow, the UAC head said

* Transaero, one of Russia’s leading airlines, signed a memorandum with the European Airbus holding to buy eight A320 neo airplanes

* Royal Dutch Shell and France’s GDF Suez have started talks with Russia’s gas giant Gazprom on prices amid pressure from European firms to cut prices, Gazprom said

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