Lynn Berry, The Associated Press

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Day after Putin call, GOP warns Trump on lifting sanctions
A day after Donald Trump's first call as president with Russia's Vladimir Putin, leading congressional Republicans made clear they oppose any attempt by the new administration to wipe away U.S. penalties imposed on Moscow by the Obama White House.
Russian warplanes start leaving Syria following Putin order
MOSCOW — Russian warplanes and troops stationed at Russia's air base in Syria started leaving for home on Tuesday after a partial pullout order from President Vladimir Putin the previous day, a step that raises hopes for progress at the newly reconvened U.N.-brokered peace talks in Geneva.
Russia: Plane brought down by homemade explosive device
A homemade explosive device brought down a Russian passenger plane over Egypt last month, the head of Russia's FSB security service said Tuesday, telling President Vladimir Putin it's now clear the crash that killed 224 people was a "terrorist" act and offering a $50 million reward for information leading to the arrest of those responsible.
Syrian troops gain as Putin defends strikes
Syrian troops backed by Russian airstrikes advanced against insurgents in the center of the country as President Vladimir Putin defended Moscow's intervention in the conflict, saying it would aid efforts to reach a political settlement.
Russia reportedly gets Iran's clearance for Syria flights
Iran has granted permission for Russian planes to fly over its territory en route to Syria, Russian news agencies reported Wednesday, a bypass needed after Bulgaria refused overflights amid signs of a Russian military buildup in Syria.
Georgia's leader warns of Russian expansion
Russia is poised to use its armed forces to expand further into former Soviet states, Georgia's president said Tuesday, calling on the West never to accept any Russian aggression.
Russia denies another near miss in Baltic skies
Russia's Defense Ministry on Sunday denied Swedish claims that for the second time this year a Russian military aircraft had nearly collided with a passenger jet over Sweden, insisting that the two planes were never less than 70 kilometers (42 miles) apart.
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