On Friday the Department of information and press of the Russian Foreign Ministry informed RIA Novosti that Moscow perceived with satisfaction the decision of the government of Sri Lanka to suspend for one month military operations against the Tamil separatists' organization "Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam". Representatives of the Russian Foreign Ministry reported that such a decision was taken by the Sri Lankan government headed by prime-minister Ranil Wickremasinghe in response to the recent statement of the leadership of the "Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam" to cease fire. The Russian Foreign Ministry stressed that the above-mentioned steps "were indicative of emerging prerequisites to resolve long-standing inter-ethnical conflict on the island". Moscow perceived with satisfaction the emerging positive signs in the development of the situation in Sri Lanka, welcomed efforts of authorities to terminate internal armed conflict, to counteract terrorism which accompanied it, to resolve the situation through provision of sovereignty and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka.
An explosion of household gas occurred in a nine-storeyed apartment building in the city of Shakhty, the Rostov region of Russia. The blast destroyed two storeys of the building