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April 16, 2015
Resurgent Russia worries Finns, but NATO not an option
Helsinki (AFP) April 16, 2015
After 25 years of tranquil post Cold War relations, Finns are once again worried about the threat posed by their resurgent eastern neighbour Russia, though they remain firmly opposed to joining NATO. The issue has been on everybody's lips since Russia annexed the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine last year, but despite the tangible concern, the question of NATO membership has been broadly avoided in political debates ahead of Sunday's legislative elections. "Security is surprisingly absent in the e ... read more

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Military Space News, Nuclear Weapons, Missile Defense
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China, Russia and eastern Europe boost defence spending: study
Military spending increased sharply in 2014 in China and Russia and the Ukraine conflict prompted eastern European countries to boost their defence programmes, according to a study by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) released Monday. ... more
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Taiwan rejected as founding member of AIIB: Beijing
Taiwan's bid to become a founding member of China's new regional development bank has been rejected, Beijing said Monday, dashing the island's hopes of having a platform in the institution from the start. ... more
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China blasts Obama over military 'muscle' in South China Sea
Beijing hit back Friday at US President Barack Obama's criticism of Chinese construction in the disputed South China Sea, arguing that it is Washington that has greater military "muscle". ... more
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Russia supplying weapons, troops to Ukraine separatists
NATO believes that Russia has supplied more troops and weapons to pro-Russian separatists in east Ukraine, a German newspaper reported on Sunday. ... more
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China defends land reclamation on disputed islands
Beijing reaffirmed its right to build on disputed islands in the South China Sea on Thursday after satellite imagery emerged of construction operations turning tropical reefs into concrete artificial islands. ... more
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US, Japan trust each other but both wary of China: poll
Over seven decades after Japan attacked Pearl Harbor and dragged the United States into a global war, Americans and Japanese overwhelmingly trust each other and are wary of China, an opinion poll has shown. ... more
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China turns Nationalist veterans from outcasts to propaganda heroes
For decades after World War II Nationalist soldier Zeng Hui was ostracised by China's Communist authorities, despite having fought against arch-enemy Japan. ... more
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NATO tests rapid reaction forces in Czech, Dutch drills
NATO tested its newly forged rapid reaction forces for the first time Thursday with drills in both the Czech Republic and the Netherlands involving some 1,500 troops, an alliance official said. ... more
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Czech leader, US ambassador clash over Moscow visit
Czech President Milos Zeman and the US ambassador to Prague have clashed over the leader's plan to travel to Moscow for a World War II victory anniversary, an event largely snubbed by Western leaders. ... more
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US, Japan trust each other but both wary of China: poll
Over seven decades after Japan attacked Pearl Harbour and dragged the United States into a global war, Americans and Japanese overwhelmingly trust each other and are wary of China, an opinion poll has shown. ... more
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Pentagon chief heading to Japan, S.Korea next week
Pentagon chief Ashton Carter will travel to Japan and South Korea next week to underscore President Barack Obama's commitment to a strategic shift towards Asia, even as crises in the Middle East preoccupy Washington. ... more
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Japan rebuffs international outcry over new history textbooks
Japan on Tuesday rebuffed neighbouring countries' protests about newly-approved textbooks after complaints about references to disputed territory and their bitter shared history. ... more
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China ex-security chief charged with bribery, power abuse
China's former security chief Zhou Yongkang was charged Friday with bribery, abuse of power and disclosing state secrets, authorities said, making him the most senior official prosecuted in decades and setting the stage for a dramatic trial. ... more
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Poland to build watch towers at Russia's Kaliningrad border
Poland will build six watchtowers to survey its 200-kilometre-long border with the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad, the police said Monday. ... more
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Tokyo, Okinawa remain apart in US base row
Shinzo Abe's right-hand man and the governor of Okinawa remained apart in a lingering row over the construction of a US air base at a meeting Sunday ahead of the Japanese premier's visit to Washington later this month. ... more
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US, Philippines set to hold expanded war games
The United States and the Philippines will double the size of their annual war games this month, with some exercises to be staged close to a South China Sea flashpoint, the Filipino military said Monday. ... more
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24/7 Energy News Coverage
Japan's maglev train notches up new world speed record

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US 'concerned' by China but not adversary: Pentagon chief
The United States is "deeply concerned" by some of China's behavior but the top world powers do not need to be adversaries, US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said Monday as he prepared to head to Asia for key talks with regional allies. ... more
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China official to visit Japan in sign of hastening thaw
A senior official from China's National People's Congress will be in Tokyo this week, Japan's lower house said Monday, the highest-profile Chinese visitor since 2012 as a thaw in relations sets in. ... more
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Japan denies plan to join China-led development bank
Japan on Tuesday ruled out any immediate plan to join the Beijing-backed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), categorically denying a news report that its ambassador to China said Tokyo is likely to take part. ... more
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Poles, Baltics and Scandinavia rally troops as Russia growls
Russia's 2014 annexation of Crimea and its subsequent meddling in eastern Ukraine have triggered vigilance in nearby Poland, the Baltic states and Scandinavia. ... more
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China objects after US fighter planes land in Taiwan
China protested on Thursday after two American jet fighters landed at an air base in Taiwan, which Beijing regards as its own territory, reportedly for the first time in 30 years. ... more
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Russian ships in old Arctic NATO base set alarms bells ringing
Russian ships docked at what was once a secret Norwegian naval base in the Arctic have prompted concern from the NATO country's former top military leaders, anxious about its resurgent eastern neighbour roaming nearby. ... more
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China former security chief charged with bribery, abuse of power
China's former security chief Zhou Yongkang was charged Friday with bribery, abuse of power and disclosing state secrets, authorities said, making him the most senior official prosecuted in decades and setting the stage for a dramatic trial. ... more
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First China air force drills in 'far offshore' Pacific
China's air force has carried out its first ever military drill over the western Pacific Ocean, state media said, highlighting Beijing's growing military reach. ... more
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