* Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has dismissed Vadim Zaitsev, head of the republic’s State Security Committee (KGB), the presidential press service said.
* Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said problems related to his country’s nuclear program must be discussed directly with the United States, IRNA news agency reported.
* The Turkish army has killed 14 members of the outlawed Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK) in an operation in the border zone with Iraq, local media reported.
* A convicted killer who shot a former US congresswoman in the head during a shooting rampage that left six people dead and 13 wounded has been sentenced to life in prison.
* The Russian government is supporting a transparent investigation of an alleged embezzlement of 6.5 billion rubles ($206 mln) allocated for the development of the Glonass global navigation satellite system, Deputy Prime Minister Vladislav Surkov said.
* Russia’s accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) poses no threat to Belarus or Kazakhstan, the other states involved in the Customs Union, State Secretary of the Russia-Belarus Union State Grigory Rapota said.
* Russia’s telecoms watchdog, Roskomnadzor, has blacklisted over 180 websites for offensive content.
* Roman Panov, prime minister of Russia’s Perm Territory and a former deputy Russian regional development minister, has been detained over the alleged embezzlement of funds earmarked for the APEC 2012 Summit, the Interior Ministry said.
* Eduard Tagiryanov, who headed one of Russia’s most notorious criminal groups in the late 1990s and early 2000s, was sentenced to life in prison, a spokesman for the Russian Investigative Committee said.
* Two teenagers from a village in Russia’s Siberian Republic of Yakutia were each sentenced to four-year terms in a high security prison for beating a policeman to death.
* A woman from Russia’s Far Eastern Khabarovsk Territory was sentenced to three years in prison for attempting to sell her five-year-old son, regional prosecutor’s office said.
* Capital outflow from Russia amounted to $5 billion in October, Deputy Economic Development Minister Andrei Klepach said.
* Independent Russian gas producer Novatek boosted its net profit 22.9 percent year-on-year to 50.911 billion rubles in January-September under IFRS, the company said in a statement.
* China is projected to overtake the US to become the world’s largest economy as early as 2016, a report by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) said.
* South Korean electronics company Samsung has dealt another blow to United States tech giant Apple, as its Galaxy S3 smartphone outsold Apple’s iPhone 4S, becoming the world’s best-selling smartphone according to the market research firm Strategy Analytics.
* Wikipedia, the world’s largest online encyclopedia, has launched a new project enabling registered users to post videos, the portal’s press service said.
* Russian President Vladimir Putin sacked chief of the armed forces General Staff, General of the Army Nikolai Makarov, and appointed Col. Gen. Valery Gerasimov to replace him.
* The second of three stealth frigates that Russia builds for India at the Yantar Shipyard in Russia’s Baltic exclave of Kaliningrad was handed over to the Indian Navy.
* Ukraine has rolled out an impressive display of arms and military equipment at an international defense show in Jakarta in an effort to sign a number of contracts with Indonesia, the head of a Ukrainian state-run defense corporation said.
* NASA and ESA have tested an “interplanetary” internet channel that might one day enable control of equipment on a planet’s surface from orbit, NASA said in a statement.
* World No. 7 Juan Martin del Potro has defeated ninth-ranked Janko Tipsarevic to end the Serb’s chances of reaching the semifinals of the $8.85 million Tour Finals in London.
* Amur Khabarovsk has released Finnish forward Mika Pyorala and signed his compatriot Perttu Lindgren, the KHL team reported.