Activists say Syrian government forces have attacked the rebel-held town of Moadamiyeh, southwest Damascus, with artillery fire as helicopters dropped barrel bombs.
Russia's Natural Resources Ministry has asked federal prosecutors to investigate the death of a polar bear that died after allegedly eating a firecracker placed in some food on a remote Arctic island.
Amnesty International says Russian air raids in Syria have killed hundreds of civilians and may amount to war crimes.
Ukrainian officials and Russian-backed separatists accused each other of violating a holiday cease-fire on December 23, just hours after the truce came into effect in Ukraine's conflict-torn east.
A senior Russian diplomat says Russia's interests in Afghanistan "objectively coincide" with those of the Taliban in the fight against the Islamic State (IS) extremist group.
The leader of Turkey's pro-Kurdish opposition party has criticized Ankara for shooting down a Russian warplane last month.
Russia has issued a new banknote dedicated to Crimea, the Ukrainian peninsula annexed illegally by the Kremlin last year.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is heading to Moscow for an annual bilateral summit expected to focus on defense and energy cooperation.
Russia's sports minister has denied the Kremlin was involved in any cover-up of doping among Russian athletes.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has said changes to the U.S. visa-waiver program breach the landmark nuclear agreement between Tehran and world powers.
At least seven people have been killed in car bombings in a town north of Baghdad.
Heavy fighting is reported to be continuing between Afghan forces and Taliban militants in the district of Sangin in the southern province of Helmand, which the militants overran earlier this week.