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  • Labour to cut ties with Co-op Bank

  • The Labour Party is looking to sever its links with the troubled Co-op Bank, bringing to an end one of the oldest political partnerships in UK.
  • Education warnings 'six years ago'

  • A lack of a long-term vision for education in Wales, highlighted in a critical OECD report, was first raised more than six years ago, BBC Wales has learnt.
  • NI incomes rise but half UK average

  • Disposable income in Northern Ireland households is increasing but is less than half of the UK average, according to an economic consultancy.
  • China releases Japanese cargo ship

  • China has released a Japanese cargo ship it seized over a war-time debt, a court statement says, after the Japanese firm paid compensation.
  • Russia says it will respond if Ukraine interests attacked

  • Members of Maidan self-defence forces march along the street in central KievBy Pavel Polityuk and Alastair Macdonald KIEV (Reuters) - Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov accused the United States of being behind the political upheaval in Ukraine and said Moscow would respond if its interests came under attack. Lavrov's comments came a day after U.S. Vice President Joe Biden was in the Ukrainian capital with promises of support for the pro-Western government, and a warning to Russia not to interfere in Ukraine. The crisis in Ukraine, now in its fourth month, has dragged Russia's relations with the West to their lowest since the Cold War. In the east, pro-Russian armed separatists have seized about a dozen public buildings and are defying Kiev's authority.



  • Obama: US would defend Japan in islands dispute

  • President Barack Obama gestures as he speaks during a joint news conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the Akasaka Palace State Guest House in Tokyo Thursday, April 24, 2014. Obama says new sanctions targeting Russia are, quote, "teed up." But he says the United States needs support from allies to make the sanctions work and says he is working to build such backing. Opening a four-country swing through the Asia-Pacific region, Obama is aiming to promote the U.S. as a committed economic, military and political partner, but the West's dispute with Russia over Ukraine threatens to cast a shadow over the president's sales mission. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)TOKYO (AP) — Showing solidarity with Japan, President Barack Obama affirmed Thursday that the U.S. would be obligated to defend Tokyo in a confrontation with Beijing over a set of disputed islands, but urged all sides to resolve the long-running dispute peacefully.



  • South Africa's institutions rot in post-apartheid world

  • File photo of students in Limpopo, a rural area of South Africa where 5,000 children had no text books for more than six months because the government stuffed-up a delivery contractIn the bowels of Africa's largest hospital, doctors carry out emergency surgery by the light of a cell phone while, on a nearby ward, seriously ill patients are sardined three-to-a-bed. Twenty years after South Africans jubilantly swept apartheid aside, Johannesburg's Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital, like many of the country's post-apartheid institutions, has failed to live up to the dream.



  • Obama says more sanctions 'teed up' against Russia over Ukraine

  • TOKYO (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama said on Thursday that additional sanctions were "teed up" against Russia if it does not deliver on promises in an agreement in Geneva last week to ease tensions in Ukraine. He added that Russia could avoid further sanctions by changing course but that the evidence so far had not left him hopeful that Moscow would do so. Obama made the remarks at a joint news conference after a summit meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. (Reporting by Mark Felsenthal; Writing by Edmund Klamann; Editing by Dominic Lau)
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