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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

News in Brief

Rogozin Aimed at NATO

The State Duma's International Affairs Committee on Nov. 8 will vote on whether to confirm nationalist politician Dmitry Rogozin as the country's new permanent representative to NATO, national media reported.

Reached by telephone Thursday, spokespeople for Rogozin and the International Affairs Committee declined to comment on the reports. President Vladimir Putin has already signed the decree on the appointment, bypassing all formalities, reported Thursday, citing a Duma source.

Rogozin has described NATO as a U.S.-dominated body that carried out "the rather aggressive interests of the United States." (MT)

German Satellite Launched

A Russian rocket sent a German reconnaissance satellite into orbit Thursday.

The Kosmos-3M rocket carrier, carrying a German SAR-Lupe satellite, was launched into space from the Plesetsk base in northern Russia, military officials at the base said.

This was the third launch of German satellite technology, the previous two taking place in July and December.

A total of five satellites will comprise the SAR-Lupe system, which will be Germany's first satellite-based reconnaissance system, providing high-resolution radar images night and day.

Russia has been aggressively trying to expand its presence in the international market for commercial and government satellite and space-industry launches, though its efforts have seen several high-profile failures. (AP)

Okruashvili Leaves Georgia

TBILISI, Georgia -- Former Georgian Defense Minister Irakli Okruashvili, whose sensational allegations against President Mikheil Saakashvili and subsequent arrest sparked the worst political crisis in years, has left the country, opposition and government officials said Thursday.

Interior Ministry spokesman Shota Utiasvhili said Okruashvili left Wednesday on a flight to Germany for unspecified medical treatment. He refused to give more details.

Georgy Khaindrava, a former government minister and now an opposition leader, said Okruashvili was forcibly taken to the airport and flown to Germany. His wife and daughter remain in the country, he said. (AP)