Russian oil giant LUKOIL, which controlled around 70 percent of Kazakhstan's Caspian Bank, has sold its stake to a group of local and Russian investors, the bank's spokeswoman Tatyana Ten said on Wednesday. Ten said LUKOIL sold its shares in late December to investors which include Kazakhstan's copper monopoly Kazakhmys and Russian bank Sibakadembank. She declined to give the value of the sale. Ten said one of the reasons behind the sell-off was that LUKOIL was still not so deeply involved in Kazakhstan's oil sector that it needed a specialist bank to serve its local projects. She said the new owners of Caspian planned to boost the bank's client base by attracting large Kazakh companies, the Russia Journal reported.
Russian small missile ships - the Grad Sviyazhsk and the Great Ustyug - set off for a mission to the Mediterranean Sea