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U.N. finds fear-mongering by pro-Russians in Ukraine

GENEVA (Reuters) - Ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine have falsely claimed to be under attack to justify Russian involvement, a report by the U.N. human rights office said on Tuesday. "Although there were some attacks against the ethnic Russian community, these were neither systematic nor widespread," said the report, which follows two visits to the country last month by Assistant Secretary General for Human Rights Ivan Simonovic.

Gunmen kill two Shiites in Pakistan's Quetta

Gunmen in southwest Pakistan shot dead two Shiite Muslims who had emigrated from neighbouring Afghanistan almost a decade ago to escape violence there, police said Sunday. Two men opened fire Saturday night on the family, from Afghanistan's Hazara community, who were at a bus station in Quetta preparing to travel to the southern city of Karachi. "A man of about 65 years of age and his 18-year-old grandson were killed in the firing at the bus terminal at Sariyab road," Imran Qureshi, a senior police official, told AFP.

Pakistan doubts Baluch group's claims about market blast

Pakistan's interior ministry Thursday cast doubt on claims by a Baluch separatist group that it carried out a bombing at a market in Islamabad that killed 24 people. The United Baluch Army (UBA), one of a number of militant separatist outfits from the southwestern province of Baluchistan, said it staged the attack -- the deadliest in the Pakistani capital since 2008. But a spokesman for the ministry dismissed the claim. "Initial investigations have revealed that the United Baluch Army has no links with yesterday's attack," the spokesman said in a statement.

Pakistan denies Baluch group's claim of market blast

Pakistan's interior ministry Thursday rejected claims by a Baluch separatist group that it carried out a bombing at a market in Islamabad that killed 24 people. The United Baluch Army (UBA), one of a number of militant separatist outfits from the southwestern province of Baluchistan, said it staged the attack -- the deadliest in the Pakistani capital since 2008. But a spokesman for the ministry dismissed the claim. "Initial investigations have revealed that the United Baluch Army has no links with yesterday's attack," the spokesman said in a statement.

Senior U.S. diplomat: no doubt Russians involved in Ukraine unrest

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Assistant U.S. Secretary of State Victoria Nuland said on Wednesday that Washington has no doubt that Russians were behind the takeovers of government buildings in eastern Ukraine this week. "I don't think that we have any doubt the preponderance of direct Russian involvement," Nuland, the top U.S. diplomat for Europe, said at a congressional hearing on the Ukraine crisis.

Hitler's wife Eva Braun may have had Jewish ancestry

Nazi leader Adolf Hitler's wife Eva Braun may have been of Jewish descent according to DNA analysis carried out for a British television documentary, the makers said Saturday. The anti-Semitic German leader responsible for the Holocaust married his long-term lover Braun shortly before they committed suicide in a Berlin bunker in 1945. But the programme to be screened by Britain's independent Channel 4 on Wednesday said hair samples show Braun may have had Jewish ancestry herself.

Crimea opposed to autonomy for Tatars

Crimea on Thursday said it was opposed to an autonomous territory for the Tatars, an ethnic minority that was against the Black Sea peninsula's recent annexation by Russia. "No, that is not possible, there can only be a cultural autonomy," Crimean deputy prime minister Roustam Temirgaliev told the Russian news agency Ria Novosti. Representatives of the Tatar community throughout Crimea held an emergency Qurultai, or congress, last week and decided to seek increased autonomy in a move widely seen as a challenge to the Kremlin.

Crimea's Tatars considering their own referendum

Crimea's Tatars are considering the possibility of a vote on increased autonomy, a local leader has said, a move likely to deepen the crisis on the Russian-controlled peninsula. The minority group's assembly, known as the Mejlis, has created a special group to look into the possibility of holding a "referendum within one ethnic group", said its leader Refat Chubarov in a statement released late on Tuesday. "We are now trying to find international precedents and international organisations which can help us in that," Chubarov said in the statement.

Russian central bank head hopes fall in investment is short-lived

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia's central bank chief, Elvira Nabiullina, said on Thursday she hoped any decrease in investment in the economy would be short-lived and there was no reason to put off a move to inflation targeting. "The main task, despite geopolitical instability, is to make the country more attractive to investors. And to speed the implementation of an array of reforms," he told a local investment conference.

Russia's seizure of Crimea denounced at U.N. rights forum

GENEVA (Reuters) - More than 40 mainly Western countries led by the United States on Wednesday denounced Russia's annexation of Crimea and voiced concern for the fate of minority Tatars as well as missing activists and journalists. In a joint statement to the United Nations Human Rights Council, they urged Russia to allow international monitors to deploy across Ukraine, "including Crimea".
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