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Kremlin says German leak shows 'involvement' of West in Ukraine

The Kremlin on Monday said the content of leaked conversations between German officials discussing potential strikes on Crimea proved Western countries were participating in the conflict in Ukraine.

The leaks came as an embarrassment for Berlin, which is under pressure to supply Taurus missiles to Kyiv struggling with ammunition shortages.

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As Biden prepares for elections, more than 6 in 10 US adults doubt his mental capability

A poll finds that a growing share of U.S. adults doubt that 81-year-old President Joe Biden has the memory and acuity for the job, turning his coming State of the Union address into something of a real-time audition for a second term.

Roughly 6 in 10 say they're not very or not at all confident in Biden's mental capability to serve effectively as president, according to a new survey by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. That's a slight increase from January 2022, when about half of those polled expressed similar concerns.

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Hard-liners dominate Iran parliamentary vote

Iranian hard-line politicians dominated the country's vote for parliament, results released Monday showed, maintaining their hold on the legislature in a vote that saw calls for a boycott and an apparently low turnout.

Authorities still have not released turnout figures for Friday's vote, nor given any reason for the delay. Turnout is suspected to be low after polling stations in the capital, Tehran, saw few voters.

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Election in UK likely this year, here's what to know

The United Kingdom is poised to hold its first election in five years in a country battered by a cost-of-living crisis, fallout from the Israel-Hamas conflict and deep divisions over how to deal with migrants and asylum seekers crossing the English Channel from Europe on small inflatable boats.

Here is a look at the upcoming election and the biggest issues at stake.

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Yoon calls for Korean unification, on holiday marking uprising against Japan

South Korea's president lambasted North Korea on Friday over what he called its repressive rule and vowed to achieve a free, unified Korean Peninsula, weeks after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un rejected the idea of peaceful unification and threatened to occupy the South in the event of war.

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol spoke on March 1 Independence Movement Day, a holiday marking a 1919 Korean uprising against Japanese colonial rule.

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Navalny's family lay him to rest after death in prison

Relatives and supporters of Alexei Navalny are bidding farewell to the opposition leader at a funeral Friday in southeastern Moscow, following a battle with authorities over the release of his body after his still-unexplained death in an Arctic penal colony.

His supporters say several churches in Moscow refused to hold the service before Navalny's team got permission from one in the capital's Maryino district, where he once lived before his 2020 poisoning, treatment in Germany and subsequent arrest on his return to Russia.

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Polling stations open in Iran for first legislative vote since 2022 protests

Iran began voting Friday in its first parliamentary elections since the mass 2022 protests over its mandatory hijab laws after the death of Mahsa Amini, with questions looming over just how many people will turn out for the poll.

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, 84, cast one of the first votes in an election that also will see new members elected to the country's Assembly of Experts. The panel of clerics, who serve an eight-year term, is mandated to select a new supreme leader if Khamenei steps down or dies, giving their role increased importance with Khamenei's age.

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Russia says thwarted attack on south Ukraine coast

Russia said Thursday it fought off an attempted landing by Ukrainian special forces on the Tendra Spit sandbar in the Black Sea held by Russian troops, killing "up to 25" Ukrainian personnel.

"Russian forces... destroyed a Ukrainian commando group... trying to land on speedboats," the defence ministry said in its daily update.

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Putin pays tribute to Russian national unity as fighting grinds on in Ukraine

President Vladimir Putin on Thursday hailed Russian national unity, even as fighting raged on in Ukraine, in a state-of-the-nation address ahead of next month's election he's all but certain to win.

Speaking to an audience of lawmakers and top officials televised live nationwide, Putin said that Russia was "defending its sovereignty and security and protecting our compatriots" in Ukraine.

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Pope taken briefly to Rome hospital for tests after his weekly audience

Pope Francis, who recently had the flu, was brought to a hospital in Rome for diagnostic testing after the papal audience Wednesday, the Vatican said, without giving further details.

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