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VOA English Newscast: 1500 UTC, April 14, 2016

In this photo provided by the U.S. Navy, a Russian Sukhoi Su-24 attack aircraft makes a low altitude pass by the USS Donald Cook in the Baltic Sea, April 12, 2016.
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From Washington, this is VOA News.

I’m Ira Mellman reporting.

Russia defends a close encounter with a U.S. warship

Russia says its aircraft observed all international rules when they flew over a U.S. warship in international waters in the Baltic Sea earlier this week.

The Russian Defense Ministry said Thursday that its SU-24 planes were conducting test flights.

In Washington, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said two Russian attack aircraft flew some 20 passes near the USS Donald Cook while the ship was in international waters.

"There have been repeated incidents over the last year where the Russian military, including Russian military aircraft, have come close enough to each other - or have come close enough to other air and sea traffic - to raise serious safety concerns."

The Donald Cook had just come from a port visit in Poland, when the flyovers occurred. It was headed out to sea with a Polish helicopter on board.

NATO has been asked to provide a permanent presence of battalion-sized deployments of allied troops in the Baltic States.

And Moscow denies any intention to attack the Baltic states.

For the first time in 16 years, a South Korean ruling party has failed to win a majority in a legislative election.

The surprise losses suffered by President Park Geun-hye's Saenuri Party Wednesday revealed widespread public discontent with her conservative economic policies and growing division over her "get tough" approach to the North Korean nuclear threat.

The favored Saenuri party won only 122 out of 300 seats in the South Korean National Assembly, according to the National Election Commission.

The main opposition Minjoo Party of Korea won 123 seats in the unicameral parliament.

This is VOA News.


Words in This Newscast

encounter – n. an unplanned or unexpected meeting

warship – n. a military or navy ship

planes – n. short for airplane

conducting – v. carrying out; performing

occurredv. happened; took place

on board – adj. carried on a vehicle

battalion – n. a large, organized group of soldiers

Moscow – n. a term for the Russian government

revealed – v. make known; make public

discontent – n. dissatisfaction; unhappiness

get tough – adj. showing firmness and wiliness to act if necessary

approach – n. a policy or method

favored – adj. considered likely to win

according – adv. as stated by or in

unicameral – adj. having only one part

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