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A runoff election for the presidency of Cyprus was scheduled for next Sunday after two challengers eliminated incumbent Tassos Papadopoulos from the running but failed to win a majority themselves. Balloting was the closest in the history of the divided island. Ex-Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides led with 33.5 percent, compared with 33.3 percent for Communist Party leader Demetris Christofias and 31.7 for Papadopoulos.

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Voters in Armenia are to choose between their prime minister and a former head of state Tuesday in a presidential election with overtones of the declaration of independence in Kosovo. For years, the ex-Soviet republic and neighboring Azerbaijan have contested Nagorno-Karabakh and other enclaves controlled by would-be Armenian separatists. Ex-President Levon Ter-Petrosian has hinted that, if he wins, he could seek a compromise with Azerbaijan. Prime Minister Serge Sarkisian, who is widely regarded as the probable winner, appears less flexible on the Nagorno-Karabakh issue.

Trading in shares of Northern Rock was suspended on the London Stock Exchange Monday as Britain's government introduced legislation in Parliament to nationalize the troubled mortgage-lender. Prime Minister Gordon Brown said the banking giant would remain under government control until market conditions improve. The government considered, but rejected, two private takeover bids, saying neither offered sufficient value to taxpayers. Above, customers stop at an automated teller machine outside a branch in Newcastle, England.

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