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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

News in Brief

Search On for 4 Teenagers

Law enforcement officers in Irkutsk are searching for four teenage girls who disappeared last week, Interfax reported Tuesday.

The girls, aged 14 to 15, left their homes on March 28 and have not been seen since, Marina Postnaya, a local police officer who works with juveniles, told Interfax. (MT)

Hare Krishnas Given Land

Moscow authorities have allocated two hectares for the construction of a Hare Krishna temple north of the city, Interfax reported Tuesday.

Mayor Yury Luzhkov signed the order that permits the Moscow branch of the International Society of Krishna Consciousness to build a temple on Novoskhodnenskoye Shosse.

The society will pay the city for use of the land and will finance construction of the temple, a city official said. (MT)

Alexy II Hopes to Meet Pope

Patriarch Alexy II said in an interview published Tuesday that he hoped differences with the Roman Catholic Church could be resolved to pave the way for a first meeting with the pope.

"I have not lost hope that relations between our churches will improve," Alexy said in an interview with Izvestia. "I positively relate to the statement by Pope Benedict on developing relations with the Orthodox Church.

"But first we need to resolve the problems between us. This, I hope, will open the path to a meeting between the heads of the two churches," Alexy said. (Reuters)

Armenian Mayor Attacked

YEREVAN, Armenia -- Gunmen wounded the mayor of Armenia's second-largest city in an attack that killed his deputy, his driver and two bodyguards Monday, a police official said.

The attack occurred around 10 p.m. between the capital, Yerevan, and Gyumri, a city of 150,000 located about 125 kilometers north of the capital, Armenian police spokesman Sayap Shirinyan said.

Vardan Gukasyan, who was returning home after a party conference in Yerevan, was hospitalized and in serious but stable condition after the attack on his two-car convoy, Shirinyan said. Gukasyan's driver and two bodyguards died on the scene and the mayor's deputy died later from his wounds. (AP)

Muslims Warn of Protest

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan -- An association of leading Muslim groups said Tuesday that it could hold demonstrations urging the president and the opposition to negotiate a way out of their escalating standoff.

"We are concerned that the ongoing political confrontation may split the country and lead to violence," said Shamil Murtazaliyev, a leader of the alliance of several Muslim groups that united in a bid to help stabilize the nation. (AP)