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Morning re-cap of main news, May 31

* Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said:

- The Adapted Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty should be implemented on a temporary basis from October of this year

- The rotation of Russian peacekeepers in the zone of Georgia's long-running conflict with the breakaway South Ossetia region would go ahead as planned

- A dispute between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the Nagorny Karabakh region should be resolved by the two countries themselves and not by third parties

- Russia's offers to help solve the long-running controversy around Iran's nuclear program were still on the negotiating table

- Russian peacekeepers would remain in Moldova's breakaway Transdnestr region until a political solution to the conflict was found

- Russia had withdrawn from a joint program with Ukraine to produce the An-70 military transport aircraft as the project is outdated

- Defense ministers from former Soviet republics set priorities for the next four years at a meeting of the CIS Defense Council in the capital of Azerbaijan

* Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said there was a chance that a meeting Thursday of the six nations leading efforts to defuse the Iranian nuclear crisis could reach a solution

* President of the breakaway Moldovan region of Transdnestr Igor Smirnov said he would initiate a referendum on independence by the end of September

* President Vladimir Putin said Russian companies were willing to join privatization projects in Slovenia

* Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said a meeting on Thursday between the six nations leading efforts to solve crisis around Iran's nuclear programs could bring a solution

* Moscow City Court ruled that Vasily Aleksanyan, the executive vice president of embattled oil company Yukos, facing embezzlement and money laundering charges, should remain in custody

* A lawyer representing Boris Berezovsky said prosecutors in Russia had extended an investigation into the tycoon in connection with his claims that he was preparing a coup in the country until August 16

* State-run nuclear company Atomstroiexport said it would start negotiations later this year with China on construction of two more reactors at the Tianwan nuclear power plant

* Three suspected militants were killed and one hostage freed in an operation in the troubled North Caucasus republic of Ingushetia

* Severstal, Russia's largest steelmaker, said it would buy mining and processing assets from Cyprus' Frontdeal - owned by Severstal owner Alexei Mordashov - for 117.203 billion rubles (about $4.33 bln)

* Givi Targamadze, senior Georgian parliamentarian, said a Russian-made anti-aircraft missile system was deployed in the breakaway region of Abkhazia in the northwest of the country.

* Giorgi Khaindrava, Georgian state minister for conflict resolution issues, protested the rotation of Russian peacekeepers in the Caucasian country's breakaway South Ossetia and Abkhazia region

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