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1.Crimea Parliament declares independence after vote,EU to reject outcome

Crimea’s Parliament on Monday declared the region an independent state, after its residents voted overwhelmingly to break off from Ukraine and seek to join Russia.However, EU President Herman Van Rompuy and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said,“The EU has a special responsibility for peace, stability and prosperity on the European continent and will continue pursuing these objectives using all available channels,”.Therefore The European Union will not recognise the outcome of Crimea’s referendum.


2.Polluted Paris prepares for partial car ban

Paris on Monday launches alternate driving days for the first time in nearly 20 years to tackle dangerous air pollution levels amid controversy on whether the ban is warranted or will yield results. The restrictions in the French capital and 22 surrounding areas will come into force on Monday morning and could be extended until Tuesday, officials said. Electric and hybrid cars will be exempted from the ban as well as any vehicle carrying three people or more.

3.Iran’s Zarif sees no nuclear deal this week

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Sunday talks with world powers this week are unlikely to result in a comprehensive accord on Iran’s controversial nuclear drive.Iranian negotiators and representatives of the so-called P5+1 group of world powers resume talks in Vienna on Tuesday for the second time since November.

4.Malaysia seeks international assistance

Malaysian officials said on Sunday they had sought the assistance of 25 countries in the search for the missing Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777. The country’s Prime Minister Najib Razak spoke with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and leaders of Bangladesh, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan to enlist their help

5.Serbia votes in snap poll

Serbs voted in a parliamentary election on Sunday that is expected to make the country’s new Prime Minister a former hard-line, pro-Russian nationalist but who is now a pro-European Union advocate.

6.Religious festival on Palk Bay strip unites competing fisherfolk

For fisherfolk — both in Sri Lanka, particularly in its Northern Province, and Tamil Nadu — the shrine of St. Anthony on Katchatheevu island, which falls on the Sri Lankan side of the International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL), stands as a huge symbol of hope. The annual St. Anthony’s festival is, in fact, the only time this tiny strip of land on the Palk Bay, otherwise uninhabited all through the year, brims with people differing from one another in Tamil dialect and nationality.


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