1. CRISIS

    Cyprus Seeks Russian Bailout

    Cypriot protestors wave flags and banners as they shout slogans during a demonstration against an EU bailout deal outside the parliament in the capital, Nicosia, on March 19, 2013. The speaker of the Cypriot parliament urged MPs to say "no to blackmail" in a vote on a eurozone bailout aimed at saving the Mediterranean island from bankruptcy. AFP PHOTO/BARBARA LABORDE        (Photo credit should read BARBARA LABORDE/AFP/Getty Images)

    Cypriot protesters in the capital, Nicosia, on Tuesday. (Barbara Laborde/AFP/Getty)

    The Cyprus crisis is turning into a Cold War–era James Bond film. Cyprus will ask Russia for bailout aid on Wednesday as the European Union threatened to cut off the tiny nation, prompting fears of a default and banking crisis. The move comes just one day after Cyprus’s Parliament rejected the bailout deal proposed by the EU and the International Monetary Fund, which would have imposed a onetime tax on civilians’ bank accounts to finance the deal. Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades will meet with party leaders on Wednesday to hammer out an alternative plan, as not a single lawmaker voted for the controversial blueprint proposed by the EU. It’s the first time any EU country has rejected a bailout plan put forth by the international coalition.

    Read it at Reuters