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Russia's Gazprom To Control Serbia's Oil

Russia and Serbia have signed a deal on the sale of a 51-percent stake in Serbian oil monopoly NIS to Russian gas giant Gazprom.

Serbian President Boris Tadic and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signed the deal on December 24. Under the deal, Gazprom is to build a gas pipeline, called South Stream, through Serbia.

The United States and the European Union are backing a rival pipeline project to bring gas from Central Asia, bypassing Russia.

Analysts say that the South Stream project could undermine the U.S. and European project, which aims to reduce Europe's dependency on Russian gas.

Compiled from agency reports