Minsk talks to focus on demilitarised zone in east Ukraine: RIA

Talks on how to resolve a conflict in Ukraine will focus on withdrawing heavy weapons, creating a demilitarised zone in eastern Ukraine and starting a dialogue between Kiev and the rebels, Russia`s RIA news agency quoted a source as saying on Tuesday.

Europe`s outcast Belarus unlikely star of Ukraine talks

 Political pariah turned would-be peacemaker, Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko will bask in the limelight this week when European leaders desperate to end the Ukraine war are expected to gather in Minsk.

Belarus strongman sacks PM amid economic woes

Belarussian strongman Alexander Lukashenko on Saturday sacked his prime minister and other top officials as the ex-Soviet state reels from the effects of Russia`s economic crisis next door.

Belarus strongman Lukashenko sacks PM amid economic woes: official

Belarussian strongman Alexander Lukashenko on Saturday sacked his prime minister as the tightly-controlled ex-Soviet state struggles with the effects of Russia`s economic crisis next door.

No Ukraine peace talks in Minsk Friday: Belarus

Ukrainian and pro-Russian rebels will not be meeting in the Belarussian capital Minsk on Friday for what Kiev had hoped would be the signing of a final peace deal, a Belarussian official said.

Russia, 4-ex-Soviet nations finalize new alliance

Russia and four other ex-Soviet nations have completed the creation of a new economic alliance intended to bolster their integration, but the ambitious grouping immediately showed signs of fracture as the leader of Belarus sharply criticized Moscow.

Ukraine truce hangs in balance after `difficult` talks
Ukraine truce hangs in balance after `difficult` talks

The latest push for peace in Ukraine appeared moribund on Thursday after initial talks failed to agree when the warring sides should meet again to try ending their eight-month conflict.

Ukraine, pro-Russian rebels resume peace talks

Ukranian and rebel envoys prepared for intense talks on Wednesday aimed at ending a pro-Russian uprising that has left the ex-Soviet republic in ruins and upset East-West ties.

Crisis-hit Russia's top allies build ties with Ukraine

Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev followed his Belarussian counterpart to Ukraine on Monday as Moscow`s old allies built bridges to Europe while Russia`s financial crisis and diplomatic isolation grew.

Belarus strongman looks to revive Ukraine peace talks

The authoritarian leader of Belarus flew into Kiev on Sunday hoping to revive stalled Ukrainian peace talks he has been hosting to calm Europe`s volatile eastern edge.

Ukraine, pro-Russian rebels announce December 9 ceasefire

Ukraine and the pro-Russian rebels said on Thursday they had agree to halt fire across the eastern war zone on December 9 under the terms of a Kremlin-brokered truce.

Cesc Fabregas, Sergio Ramos bury hatchet in Spain commitment spat
Cesc Fabregas, Sergio Ramos bury hatchet in Spain commitment spat

Cesc Fabregas was "pissed off" with Spain team mate Sergio Ramos for raising doubts about his commitment to the national team but said the pair had buried the hatchet.

Spain fully committed despite Sergio Ramos comments, says Vicente del Bosque
Spain fully committed despite Sergio Ramos comments, says Vicente del Bosque

Spain coach Vicente del Bosque has no doubts about the commitment of Diego Costa and other members of his squad following the suggestion from Sergio Ramos that they are not giving their all.

Injured keeper David de Gea to miss Spain Euro 2016 qualifier
Injured keeper David de Gea to miss Spain Euro 2016 qualifier

Spain goalkeeper David de Gea will miss their Euro 2016 qualifier with Belarus on Saturday after injuring a finger in training, said national team doctor Oscar Celada.

Soriano replaces injured Fabregas in Spain squad
Soriano replaces injured Fabregas in Spain squad

Villarreal mid-fielder Bruno Soriano replaced injured Cesc Fabregas in the Spain's 23-member squad that will face Belarus and Germany.

Cesc Fabregas out of Spain`s Euro qualifier, Germany clash
Cesc Fabregas out of Spain`s Euro qualifier, Germany clash

Spain suffered a blow on Tuesday when Cesc Fabregas had to pull out of their Euro 2016 qualifier with Belarus and the friendly against Germany with a hamstring injury.

Belarus coach Georgy Kondratyev steps down
Belarus coach Georgy Kondratyev steps down

Georgy Kondratyev has left his position as head coach of the Belarus national team after failing to improve their fortunes, the Belarus Football Federation said on Monday.

Japan pin-up wrestler feared baldness after hot water `attack`
Japan pin-up wrestler feared baldness after hot water `attack`

Japan`s wrestling pin-up Sosuke Takatani feared he could go bald after a rival poured a kettle of hot water over his head at the world championships in Tashkent, local media reported on Friday.

Main points of Ukraine ceasefire `protocol`

The Ukraine government and pro-Moscow rebels signed up to a ceasefire on Friday, but renewed fighting around the key port city of Mariupol is threatening the deal.

Ukraine truce hanging by a thread? Woman killed in Mariupol, blasts heard near Donetsk
Ukraine truce hanging by a thread? Woman killed in Mariupol, blasts heard near Donetsk

Just a day after a much-needed ceasefire took hold in eastern Ukraine after four-months of violence, intense explosions were heard near the eastern city of Mariupol on Saturday evening, jeopardising the truce and forcing the Red Cross aid trucks to turn back.