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Georgian government to change law on occupied territories
07.02.2013 17:06
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Georgia, Tbilisi, Feb. 7 /Trend, N. Kirtskhalia/

The Georgian government is going to change its law on occupied territories, State Minister for Reintegration Paata Zakareishvili told journalists after a governmental meeting on Thursday.

He said according to the current law, foreign nationals who enter Georgia through Abkhazia and South Ossetia are immediately detained.

"Criminal cases are initiated against them and they serve sentences in Georgian prisons. We consider this is unfair, as many citizens of Azerbaijan and Armenia returning home through Georgia were imprisoned," Zakareishvili said.

He stressed that the new law requires punishment for the first time violators of the law, which does not allow visits to Abkhazia and South Ossetia in a manner not agreed upon with the government.

"If the violation is repeated, criminal case will be initiated," he said.

Today, the Georgian Government approved this proposal.

Large scale military actions were launched in South Ossetia in Georgia on August 8, 2008. Later, Russian troops occupied Tskhinvali and expelled the Georgian military. Russia recognized the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia late in August. Tbilisi ended diplomatic relations with Moscow in response and has declared the two unrecognized republics of Abkhazia and South Ossetia occupied territories.

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NEWS STORY
  • Azerbaijani youth has all potential for self-realization - Intigam Babayev
    22.12.2014 15:11
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135937.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135937.jpg
    "Youth policy of Azerbaijan is developing from year to year."

    This was stated by Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports Intigam Babayev during the event "Youth organizations: new opportunities and current challenges", dedicated to the third anniversary of the creation of the Youth Fund under the President of Azerbaijan.

    "Azerbaijani youth has great creative potential for the realization of which the state has created all necessary conditions" Babayev said.

    Deputy Minister criticized the statements of opposition media and some international organizations that Azerbaijan allegedly has not created enough opportunities for the development of civil society.

    "Youth is the driving force in any society. Today in Azerbaijan there is a Youth Foundation, which in recent years has supported about 2 000 projects.A lot of young people have used these opportunities. All this testifies to the active participation of young people in the development of society," he said.

    The role of the Youth Fund also was highlighted by the head of the National Council of Youth Organizations of Azerbaijan Shahin Seyidzade. He stressed that no country in the world has a structure similar to this fund, which would support, including the financial side, the projects of youth organizations implemented even abroad.

    "The more active the youth isç the more there will be ideas and implemented projects," Sh.Seidzade says.

    The head of the Public Union "Ireli" Mirgasan Seyidov and the head of the Union of Youth Student Organizations Shahin Ismayilov stressed the role and success of the Youth Fund in their speeches and also noted the success of the youth policy of the country as a whole over the past 20 years.
    0
  • Azerbaijani police tighten security measures
    22.12.2014 15:11
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135938.jpg
    The Azerbaijani police have tightened security measures.

    The Interior Ministry's press service told APA that Colonel General Ramil Usubov has signed an order in this regard. According to the order, the police will tighten security measures from December 22 to 25 in connection with municipal elections scheduled for tomorrow. The number of patrol guards will be increased to maintain public tranquility.

    Municipal elections in Azerbaijan will be held on December 23.
    0
  • Khinalig village to be provided with alternative energy
    22.12.2014 15:02
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138046.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138046.jpg
    /By AzerNews/

    By Nigar Orujova

    The International Eco-Energy Academy has developed a project to provide Azerbaijani Khinalig village with renewable energy, President of the Academy, Professor Fagan Aliyev said.

    Located at the peak of the Caucasus Mountains, 2,350 meters above the sea in Guba region, Khinalig is an area that has preserved its ancient life style to this day.

    Aliyev said that the project first intends to get solar energy, river water and biogas. At his words, sunlight is more intense in the high-mountain village. Therefore, the project prefers solar energy, he added.

    The president said Azerbaijan is rich with wind, sun, river waters, biotermal, methanol, hydrogen and other renewable energy.

    The academy has developed a number of projects associated with alternative energy sources.

    The villagers were given directions on agricultural sector, especially on the sustainable development of animal husbandry and fishery.

    Alternative energy usage is common in Azerbaijan. The total capacity of alternative and renewable energy sources in the country exceeds 12,000 megawatts. Most of the country's capacities in this area fall on solar energy, and its capacity is estimated at 5,000 megawatts.

    Some 4,500 MW fall on wind energy, biomass - 1,500 MW, geothermal energy - 800 MW, while the remaining 350 MW fall on small hydro power plants.

    Today, Azerbaijan plans to establish a new electricity generating capacity in renewable energy as of 2015.

    The State Agency for Alternative and Renewable Energy Sources plans to launch a project with a total capacity of 300 megawatts. The project will focus on the generation of solar, wind, geothermal waters, small rivers and biomass energy.

    Over 100 million manats ($127 million) has been invested from the public fund in the development of alternative and renewable energy sources in Azerbaijan. The government plans to build up to 100 objects for alternative energy for 5 years.

    The share of alternative energy sources is planned to increase to 20 percent of the total volume of energy consumption in Azerbaijan by 2020, which requires 7 billion manats ($8.9 billion) of investment.

    EBRD funds alternative energy in Azerbaijan

    European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has invested 25 million euros for projects in the Green for Growth Fund (GGF) for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency in South-Eastern Europe and the countries of the European Neighborhood, including Azerbaijan, the bank reported.

    The additional funds allocated by the EBRD are expected to lead to expansion of GGF activity, the report said. ''The demand for funding of projects in the field of sustainable energy remains high in South-Eastern Europe, where the effects of the financial crisis still affect bank lending,'' the bank said.

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    0
  • Burglary suspect dies after Taser shooting
    22.12.2014 15:02
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450625.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450625.jpg
    A burglary suspect has died after being shot by a Taser in Newcastle-under-Lyme.

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    The occupants had left their house, leaving the man inside.

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    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/08/16/no_image_found.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/08/16/no_image_found.jpg
    Tbilisi, Georgia, Dec.22

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    "By refusing to carry out flights on Tbilisi-Moscow route, Georgian aviation authorities have grossly violated the agreement reached between the two countries," said the company.

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  • Georgian star shines on Azerbaijani stage
    22.12.2014 14:41
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138045.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138045.jpg
    /By AzerNews/

    By Amina Nazarli

    The Heydar Aliyev Center hosted a solo concert titled "My Unsophisticated Songs" by Vakhtang Kikabidze, the People's Artist of Georgia.

    The living legend presented a rich repertoire of songs performed in various periods winning the hearts of millions. These hits have managed to withstand the test of time and turned their performer into an idol indeed across the globe.

    Vakhtang's songs tell the story of friendship and love, of Tbilisi and Baku old courtyards full of kindness and full of sincerity. In his compositions, he paid tribute to the memory of those people who are no longer around him, but who will live forever in his heart ... It was a nostalgic evening made by the legendary singer and actor!

    During the visit, Kikabidze was accompanied by famous Georgian singer Liza Bagrationi.

    The whole concert lasted for more than two hours passed and the audience was thrilled up by his performance. Kikabidze embodies the soul of the Caucasus, its musicality, its international character and nobility loyal friends.

    "I remembered my first visit to Azerbaijan about 40-50 years ago. Baku has changed over the recent years. It has become very great and beautiful. I even cannot find appropriate words to express my emotions," he said in an interview to Trend.

    It is the second visit of Vakhtang to Baku in 2014.

    Singer, actor, screenwriter, producer, and composer, Kikabidze has performed in a number of films, among them the main role of a helicopter pilot in the iconic Soviet film Mimino.He was also acknowledged by a number of various music contests and film festivals in the Soviet Union, Georgia and worldwide. In 1999, his star was embedded on the "Star Square" in Moscow.
    1
  • Belarus, Azerbaijan to cooperate in satellite communication
    22.12.2014 14:35
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138044.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138044.jpg
    /AzerNews/

    By Nigar Orujova

    Belarus is ready to cooperate with Azerbaijan in the field of satellite communications, the Azerbaijani Communication and High Technologies Ministry said.

    The cooperation between the two countries in the field are planned to be discussed within the framework of the regular meeting of the Azerbaijani-Belarusian intergovernmental commission on economic cooperation, which will be held in Minsk in early 2015.

    The session will also include the meeting of ministers of the industry, which will affect the issues of cooperation between Azerbaijan and Belarus in the sphere of high technologies.

    In particular, the two countries consider the possibility of using low-orbit satellites for collaborative research conduct. Earlier, Belarus and Azerbaijan have agreed to cooperate on the use of information obtained from the Belarusian satellite.

    Azerbaijan became a member of the space club by launching its own satellite into orbit in February 2013. Azerspace-1 telecommunication satellite covers Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, Central Asia and North Africa. The second satellite is scheduled to be launched in 2017.

    Moreover, Azerbaijani space agency Azercosmos plans to launch a low-Earth orbit satellite in 2016.

    Earlier, Belarusian ambassador to Azerbaijan Nikolai Paskevich assessed 2014 as a dynamic year in terms of the Belarusian-Azerbaijani relations expansion noting the year saw a number of significant multi-format events in bilateral ties.
    4
  • Azerbaijan offers to introduce electronic customs declaration, licensing
    22.12.2014 14:27
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/12/22/internet_2212.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/12/22/internet_2212.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.22

    By Huseyn Veliyev - Trend:

    Azerbaijan needs to convert into electronic form provision of customs declarations, licensing services and public procurement, a project coordinator of the public organization of anti-corruption Mahammad Muradov said Dec.22 during the presentation of the results of monitoring of e-services application.

    He said that it is also considered appropriate to develop electronic systems for the real estate and land cadastre, create opportunity for the exchange of commercial information with other government agencies, which is reflected in the AVIS system of the ministry of taxes of Azerbaijan.

    There is a necessary gateway of the e-government for information sharing between state agencies in Azerbaijan and the "e-government" portal (e-gov.az) plays this role, he said.

    It is reported that the monitoring covered 30 of the most important and popular electronic services available to citizens and business sector of the country.

    He said that of the total number of e-services, subject to monitoring, 47 percent (14 units) are rendered to the population online, 20 percent (6 services) are at the level of electronic application, 33 percent (10 units) are represented at the level of media carriers or non-existent at all in the electronic environment, while they are socially orientated and their application should be simplified.

    The latter include the replacement of identity card and passport, obtaining a driver's license online order of the car number and getting the document on the status of a registered citizen.

    Monitoring of e-government infrastructure was carried out on 7 components and its condition was assessed according to 7-point scale.

    Some 387 services of the total number of approved electronic services (452) are available on the "electronic government" (e-gov.az) portal.

    The 'Electronic Government' website is a key tool for supporting work with citizens and businesses, belonging to the state and private sectors. It aims at reducing the number of documents required by the citizens, with the help of an electronic interaction among different bodies.

    The access to the portal is conducted with the help of e-signature, the identity data of the private entrepreneurs and citizens, verification data (login and password), as well as mobile authentication system, which can be obtained in an electronic form after registering on the portal.

    --

    Follow the author on Twitter: @h_veliyev

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    6
  • Mikheil Saakashvili to return to Georgia in 2015
    22.12.2014 14:26
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135936.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135936.jpg
    Former President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili is planning to return to Georgia in 2015.

    He has written so on his Facebook page, APA reports.

    He extended gratitude to all who have congratulated him on the occasion of his birthday, noting that he is thinking of returning to Georgia next year.

    "I thank everyone for the birthday congratulation. Next year we will meet in Georgia," he said.
    5
  • Georgian military unit arrives in Afghanistan
    22.12.2014 14:26
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/01/01/georgian_soldiers.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/01/01/georgian_soldiers.jpg
    Tbilisi, Georgia, Dec.22

    By Nana Kirtzkhalia - Trend:

    The unit of the fourth infantry brigade of Georgian armed forces has arrived in Afghanistan.

    Georgian servicemen will fulfill their mission under German command at the Marmal military base in the northern province of Mazar-i-Sharif within six months, Georgian Defense Ministry told Trend on Dec.22.

    Representative of the Georgian armed forces Colonel Joni Tatunashvili met the staff.

    Georgian company will replace one of the German units in accordance with the principle of rotation. The official ceremony of handing over the mission will be held later.

    The company of the fourth infantry brigade of Georgian armed forces was trained in Georgia for 13 weeks and in Germany for five months.

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    4
  • Iran warns spy planes, ahead of its large-scale military drill
    22.12.2014 14:26
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/03/09/military_exercises_Iran_090313.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/03/09/military_exercises_Iran_090313.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 22

    By Umid Niayesh - Trend:

    Iran has warned several "trans-regional" spy planes to stay away from Iranian airspace, ahead of holding a large-scale military exercise, the Islamic Republic's Tasnim news agency reported Dec. 22.

    "Iran warned several spy planes related to trans-regional powers which were operating near the country's flight information region (FIR) on Dec.21-22," the deputy commander and spokesperson for the country's Khatam al-Anbia Air Defense Base Brigadier General Shahrokh Shahram said on Dec. 22.

    Shahram said that some of the warned planes were U-2 spy plane.

    Brigadier General Farzad Esmayeeli, commander of the Khatam al-Anbia Air Defense Base said early in December that Iran has warned an American spying U-2 plane.

    The US surveillance plane altered its flight path after Iran's air defense missiles locked onto it, according to Iran's top air defense commander.

    Although the U-2 is nearly 60 years old, it has been updated and redesigned and is still routinely used by the US for surveillance.

    Iran will hold a widespread military drill dubbed "Mohammad Rasulullah" from Dec. 25 to Dec. 31, 2014.

    The exercises will be held in an area of 2.2 million square kilometers and will involve the navy, air forces, land forces of Iran army and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

    ---

    Umid Niayesh is Trend Agency's staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @UmidNiayesh

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    3
  • Snowfall predicted in Azerbaijan tomorrow
    22.12.2014 14:22
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135935.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135935.jpg
    The weather will be cloudy and rainy in some areas in Baku and Absheron peninsula on December 23.

    The National Hydrometeorology Department of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources told APA that it will be little foggy in some areas at night and in the morning. North-west wind will occasionally intensify and be warmer in the afternoon.

    The temperature will be 3hellip;5 C at night and 6hellip;9 C in the daytime.

    The atmospheric pressure will be 760-765 mm Hg and relative humidity - 75-85%.

    On December 23, intermittent rain and sleet are forecasted in Azerbaijan's regions and it will snow in mountainous and sub- mountainous regions. It will be foggy in some areas. West wind will blow.

    The temperature will be 0hellip;5 C at night, 5hellip;10 C in the daytime, in mountains -3hellip;-8 C at night, -2hellip;-3 C in the daytime.

    According to medical-meteorological forecast, changeable weather condition, sufficient fluctuation of the atmosphere pressure and exchange of north and south wind till December 25 in Absheron peninsula can be unfavorable for weather-sensitive people.
    5
  • Artistic gymnastics developing in Azerbaijan
    22.12.2014 14:22
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138042.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138042.jpg
    /By AzerNews/

    By Amina Nazarli

    Baku hosted the first tournament of women's artistic gymnastics among young athletes on December 19.

    This event was the first tournament of this kind since Azerbaijan gained independence, Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation Secretary General Farid Gaibov told Trend.

    The first classes in women's artistic gymnastics were held in late 2013. The tournament brought together children born between 2006-2009. The winners were awarded prizes and diplomas.

    Gaibov said women's artistic gymnastics was a popular sport in the country during the time of the former Soviet Union.

    "So our goal is to revive this sport and make it popular again. Todayв's tournament has become a kind of stimulus for young gymnasts. They were definitely worried and our goal [during the tournament] was to make them felt what a competition is, and why it is necessary to train in this sport. This is only the first step and other championships will also be held in future," Gaibov said.

    Women's artistic gymnastics is an Olympic sport, which needs to be developed, according to Gaibov.

    He also said it is not yet possible to speak about quick development of this sport in Azerbaijan, because it would take some years.

    "We want to find the best gymnasts and establish a good team. So, it is necessary to open several sport clubs. Today, the selection is carried out mainly in sport clubs including Baku Gymnastics School and ''Ojag'' Sport Club.

    "Moreover, there is also another place where children are being trained. After being selected, the chosen children would be trained by head coach in women's artistic gymnastics,'' Gaibov underscored.
    4
  • Presidential administration: We will liberate Karabakh within 10 days
    22.12.2014 14:22
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135934.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135934.jpg
    "Our army causes our great feeling of pride".

    The National Army of Azerbaijan is able to liberate the Armenian-occupied lands within several days.

    The statement came from chief of the public policy department of the Presidential Administration of the country Ali Hasanov.

    "The national army which creates our great feeling of pride", he said speaking at an event on the third anniversary since creation of the Youth Fund under the president of the country, Oxu.Az reports with reference to Interfax.

    According to Hasanov, if the international community remains indifferent to the violation of the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan, 'I am sure that the national army will be able to liberate all the occupied lands of Azerbaijan within a week or ten days'.

    The course of the country's development, including the youth policy of the Azerbaijan's development, is based on people's interests, Hasanov said.

    "The youth policy is a priority direction of the Azerbaijani state", Hasanov said.

    He highly praised the activity of the Youth Fund which supports and finances the projects implemented by youth organizations.
    4
  • Russia, Iran may start using national currencies in food trade in 2015
    22.12.2014 14:21
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/03/09/Iran_Russia_flags_090313.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/03/09/Iran_Russia_flags_090313.jpg
    Russia and Iran may start using national currencies in bilateral food trade next year, as follows from a news release of the Russian agriculture watchdog Rosselkhoznadzor, Russian news agency TASS reported Dec. 22.

    "The two sides noted their mutual interest in maintaining stable bilateral trading relations and the effective control of quality and safety of goods irrespective of an increase in trading transactions and emphasized the need for maintaining an acceptable level of prices," Rosselkhoznadzor said after a meeting of Russia's negotiators with Iran's First Deputy Agriculture Minister Hassan Sinaki.

    Rosselkhoznadzor spokesman Alexey Alekseyenko told TASS on December 21 Russia and Iran had agreed on the supplies of foodstuffs and on settlements either in national currencies or in kind, provided either side is interested in the supplies of such products.

    "We are well aware of the fact that the dollar's rate against the ruble is groundlessly overstated and by no means reflects the ruble's real purchasing power, so for that reason we should make transition to other principles of maintaining economic ties."

    "We have been able to see for ourselves that the products the Iranians have offered, for instance, dairy products, are of very high quality," Alekseyenko said. "Iran plans to export to Russia 20,000 tons of trout and no less than 3,000 tons of shrimps and seafood," he added.

    By now Rosselkhoznadzor specialists have issued export permissions to 20 Iranian provider firms.

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    2
  • China offers Russia help with currency swap suggestion
    22.12.2014 14:11
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450615.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450615.jpg
    Two Chinese ministers offered support for Russia as President Vladimir Putin seeks to shore up the ruble without depleting foreign-exchange reserves.

    China will provide help if needed and is confident Russia can overcome its economic difficulties, Foreign Minister Wang Yi was cited as saying in Bangkok in a Dec. 20 report by Hong Kong-based Phoenix TV. Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng said expanding a currency swap between the two nations and making increased use of yuan for bilateral trade would have the greatest impact in aiding Russia, according to the broadcaster.

    While the offer wonв't relieve the main sources of pressure on the ruble -- capital outflow tied to plunging oil prices and sanctions linked to Russiaв's annexation of Crimea from Ukraine - - the currency gained 3.1 percent against the dollar by 12:37 p.m. in Moscow. The Micex Index (INDEXCF) rose was little changed, and the yield on Russiaв's 10-year bond fell 30 basis points to 13.3 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

    ''In the current conditions, any help is very welcome,'' Vladimir Miklashevsky, a strategist at Danske Bank A/S, said by e-mail. ''Yet, it canв't substitute the losses of the Russian banking system and economy from western sanctions.''
    5
  • Iran takes 4th place globally in missile industry
    22.12.2014 14:11
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138041.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138041.jpg
    /By AzerNews/

    By Sara Rajabova

    Iran, which has recently made great achievements in producing military products, has taken the fourth place in missile industry in the world.

    Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan, Iranв's Defense Minister said the Islamic country has an acceptable status among countries possessing missile capabilities, and stands after the United States, Russia and China.

    Dehqan said in a televised interview with Al-Alam channel on December 19 that ''in proportion to possible threats against the country, we have tried to increase the range of our missiles.''

    He noted that Iran is currently striving to boost the accuracy of its missiles and make them radar-evading.

    Dehqan further said Iran has achieved great successes in the missile industry in recent years, adding that the country will not allow anyone to raise doubt about its missiles.

    Over the past years, Iran has made important breakthroughs in its defense sector, attained self-sufficiency in producing important military equipment and systems and enhanced the preparedness of its forces by holding various drills.

    Iran, however, has repeatedly assured other nations, especially regional neighbors, that its military might poses no threat to other countries, insisting that its defense doctrine is merely based on deterrence.

    Iran has recently taken great strides in defense sector and attained self-sufficiency in producing essential military equipment and systems. Iran has so far unveiled various domestically produced drones, including Ababil, Fotros, Hazem, Karrar (long range attack drone), Mohajer, Sarir, Shahed 129, Yasir and Zohal.

    Since 1992, Iran has manufactured its own tanks, armored personnel carriers, missiles, radars, boats, submarines and fighter planes.
    6
  • Georgiaв's Defense Ministry apologizes for incorrect statement
    22.12.2014 13:51
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    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/12/04/Georgia_Defence_ministry_041212.jpg
    Tbilisi, Georgia, Dec. 22

    By Nana Kirtzkhalia - Trend:

    The Defence Ministry of Georgia has apologized to the public for a previously made statement.

    Georgia's deputy defense minister, Levan Girsiashvili, said Dec. 22 on air of the Imedi TV channel that the statement on the death of the Georgian serviceman Alexander Grigolashvili in Ukraine was a mistake, for which the ministry brings its apologies.

    In the mentioned statement, the Defense Ministry held the former authorities of the country responsible for what happened.

    "The scandalous statement made by the Defence Ministry was a mistake, although no one is immune from making mistakes. We see and recognize this error. The Defence Ministry brings its apologies for the made statement," Girsiashvili said.

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    6
  • Baku Sinfonietta orchestra to give concert
    22.12.2014 13:47
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138040.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138040.jpg
    /By AzerNews/

    By Amina Nazarli

    The concert dedicated to the World Azerbaijanis Solidarity Day will be held in Azerbaijani State Philharmonic in Baku on December 25.The concert which will start at 19:00 will be organized by the Azerbaijan Culture and Tourism Ministry.In the performance of Baku Simfonietta orchestra, the concert will present pleasant moods for the music fans. Compositions of Gara Garayev, Soltan Hajibeyov and Sergey Prokofiev will thrill up the night.The day after, on December 26 Azerbaijan State Symphony Orchestra named after Uzeir Hajibeyli will give a concert of the Philharmonic stage. Conducted by famous Ukrainian conductor Vladimir Runchak, the concert promises to give unbelievable energy for the guests.

    The address of the both events is Istiglaliyyat street. The price of tickets stands from 4 to 15 manats.
    8
  • European stocks climb with Asian shares as ruble advances
    22.12.2014 13:47
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450590.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450590.jpg
    European stocks advanced, while Asiaв's benchmark share index headed for the biggest three-day gain in two months. The ruble jumped with crude oil.

    The Stoxx Europe 600 Index climbed 0.9 percent by 8:21 a.m. in London. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.7 percent, bringing its gain since Dec. 18 to 3.2 percent. Australiaв's Samp;P/ASX 200 Index (MXAP) added 1.9 percent. Standard amp; Poorв's 500 Index futures increased 0.2 percent. The ruble surged 3.5 percent in Moscow, while crude rose for a second day. Yields on 10-year Japanese debt fell to the lowest level since April 2013.

    The Federal Reserve said last week that it would be patient over interest-rate increases, while signaling borrowing costs could be raised as early as April, spurring a surge in global stocks and declines in U.S. Treasuries. Data tomorrow may show U.S. growth was faster than initially estimated last quarter. Saudi Arabiaв's oil minister said heв's is confident crude prices will rebound as demand recovers.

    ''In general, investors seem to be feeling that itв's safe to buy after the Fedв's shown that theyв're not in a hurry to raise rates,'' Shoji Hirakawa, chief equity strategist at Okasan Securities Co. in Tokyo, said by phone today. How oil ''might move towards next week hasnв't become clear, so it could still disrupt markets''.
    4
  • Free and open election held in Uzbekistan '" CIS observers
    22.12.2014 13:37
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/08/19/elections_120513_1.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/08/19/elections_120513_1.jpg
    Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Dec.22

    By Demir Azizov- Trend:

    The CIS observation mission recognized the parliamentary election in Uzbekistan as free and open, the head of the mission Sergey Lebedev said at a briefing Dec. 22.

    "The CIS observation mission consisting of 76 people at the invitation of the Central Election Commission of Uzbekistan monitored the preparation and holding the election to the Legislative Chamber of the Oliy Majlis (a lower house of the parliament) of Uzbekistan on December 21," he said.

    The mission included the representatives of Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and the CIS Executive Committee.

    Lebedev said that the CIS observers visited all regions, monitored 70 percent of the district election commissions and 707 polling stations.

    The election to the Legislative Chamber of Oily Majlis (a lower house of Uzbek parliament) was held on Dec.21.

    Over 18 million citizens, or over 88 percent of the total number of the voters took part in the election.

    The preliminary results of the election will be announced on Dec.22.

    Around 535 candidates from four political parties - the Liberal Democratic Party, People's Democratic Party, the Democratic Party Milly Tiklanish (National Revival), and the Social Democratic Party Adolat (Justice) claimed for 135 seats in the Legislative Chamber of the Oliy Majlis (a lower house of the Uzbek parliament), the CEC said.

    Moreover, there are 15 seats in the parliament for the representatives of the Ecological Movement of Uzbekistan, which elected its representatives at the conference on December 21.

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    5
  • Foreign payers of compulsory social insurance in Azerbaijan increase
    22.12.2014 13:32
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/12/18/dsmf_bina_181214_02.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/12/18/dsmf_bina_181214_02.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.22

    Trend:

    In Azerbaijan, the number of foreigners registered in terms of the individual registration system of the State Social Protection Fund (SSPF) as of December 1, 2014 increased by 29.3 percent compared to the beginning of the year, said the fund Dec.22.

    During January-December, the SSPF opened 5,012 individual accounts for foreign citizens, bringing the total number of foreigners registered in terms of the individual registration system to 22,112 people, the report said.

    Some 89.2 percent of the foreigners registered this year account for men and 10.8 percent for women.

    Foreigners registered in terms of the individual registration system in Azerbaijan are citizens of 104 countries of the world. Most of them are the citizens of Turkey - 11,815 people. The citizens of Georgia hold the second place in this list - 2,492 people, and the citizens of Russia - the third place with 1,269 people.

    They are followed by the citizens of Iran - 864 people, China - 741, India - 605, Pakistan - 463, Great Britain and Northern Ireland -331, Ukraine - 244, Uzbekistan-235, Bangladesh - 202, the Philippines-189, Germany -185, Turkmenistan - 181, United States - 164, Kazakhstan - 154, Italy - 144 people, Korea - 135, Bosnia and Herzegovina - 132, Malaysia - 103 and other countries.

    Decree of the president of Azerbaijan on the application of the law "On an individual registration in the state social insurance system" was signed December 2001.

    The individual registration is an organization and information accounting of each insured person for provision with pension and other social security rights in accordance with the laws of the country.

    The process of mandatory state social insurance of foreigners who receive salaries from sources in Azerbaijan, as well as incomes from which contributions on compulsory social insurance are paid began in January 2006.

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    4
  • Turkey wants to launch Baku-Tbilisi-Kars rail route by late 2015
    22.12.2014 13:32
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/11/13/railway_131114.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/11/13/railway_131114.jpg
    Turkish Transport, Maritime and Communication Minister Lutfi Elvan said Turkey wants to launch Baku-Tbilisi-Kars rail route by end of 2015, the Anadolu News Agency reported Dec. 22

    The minister also added that the route will link Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey.

    Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway is being constructed on the basis of the Georgian-Azerbaijani-Turkish intergovernmental agreement.

    The State Oil Fund of the Republic of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) finances the project in accordance with the Azerbaijani president's decree 'On the implementation of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars project activities' dated February 21, 2007.

    A new 105-kilometer branch of the railroad is being constructed as part of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars project. In addition, the railway's Akhalkalaki-Marabda-Tbilisi section is under reconstruction in Georgia that will increase its capacity to 15 million metric tons of cargo per year. A post is under construction in Akhalkalaki for the transition of trains from the existing tracks in Georgia to the European ones.

    The peak capacity of the corridor will be 17 million metric tons of cargo per year. At the initial stage, this figure will be equal to one million passengers and 6.5 million metric tons of cargo.

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    2
  • BlackBerry works with Boeing on phone that self-destructs
    22.12.2014 13:06
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450585.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450585.jpg
    BlackBerry Ltd is working with Boeing Co on Boeing's high-security Android-based smartphone, the Canadian mobile technology company's chief executive said on Friday.

    The Boeing Black phone being developed by the Chicago-based aerospace and defence contractor, which is best known for jetliners and fighter planes, can self-destruct if it is tampered with.

    The Boeing Black device encrypts calls and is aimed at government agencies and others that need to keep communications and data secure.

    "We're pleased to announce that Boeing is collaborating with BlackBerry to provide a secure mobile solution for Android devices utilizing our BES 12 platform," BlackBerry CEO John Chen said on a conference call held to discuss its quarterly results.

    "That, by the way, is all they allow me to say."

    The BlackBerry Enterprise Service, or BES 12, will allow clients such as corporations and government agencies to manage and secure not just BlackBerry devices on internal networks, but those that run on rival operating systems such as Google's Android and Apple's iOS.

    The Boeing phone uses dual SIM cards to enable it to access multiple cell networks and can be configured to connect with biometric sensors and satellites.
    10
  • President attends ceremony to award athletes and sports professionals
    22.12.2014 13:00
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135933.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135933.jpg
    On December 22, the National Olympic Committee held an event on the outcomes of 2014; athletes and sports professionals were awarded.

    President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, President of the National Olympic Committee Ilham Aliyev also attended the event, AzerTag reports.

    The head of state made a speech at the event.

    Then an award ceremony took place.
    4
  • SCO observersв' mission assesses elections in Uzbekistan as democratic
    22.12.2014 12:51
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/10/07/elections_081013_albom.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/10/07/elections_081013_albom.jpg
    Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Dec.22

    By Demir Azizov- Trend:

    The observers' mission from the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) has assessed the elections to the Legislative Chamber of Oliy Majlis of Uzbekistan as transparent and democratic.

    "The elections were held in accordance with the Uzbek law and the country's international obligations," head of SCO mission, Deputy Secretary General of the organization Makhmadsharif Khakdodov said at a briefing on Dec.22.

    He said the elections held in Uzbekistan were transparent and democratic.

    Khakdodov said the SCO mission monitored the preparations and the process of holding the elections from Dec.19 to Dec.22. The mission carried out its activities in compliance with the requirements to the international observers.

    The mission reviewed the pre-election program of the political parties participating in the elections - the Liberal Democratic Party, People's Democratic Party, the Democratic Party Milly Tiklanish (National Revival), and the Social Democratic Party Adolat (Justice).

    In order to objectively assess the process of holding the elections, the mission got acquainted with the activities of some precinct election commissions.

    On the voting day, the mission took part in 73 polling stations in Tashkent city and Tashkent province.

    Alongside with the SCO mission, observers from political parties, election agents of the candidates for MPs, as well as international observers visited the polling stations. The mission didn't receive any complaints from those persons during the voting process.

    The mission members had an opportunity to visit various polling stations at their own discretion, freely observe the election process and get the needed information about the members of the commissions of polling stations.

    The mission representatives also took part in the process of counting the ballots and drawing up relevant protocols on the voting results at the polling stations.

    "No case of violation of the Uzbek law on the elections to Oily Majlis was revealed by the mission during these procedures," Khakdodov added.

    The elections to the Legislative Chamber of Oily Majlis (lower house of Uzbek parliament) were held on Dec.21.

    Over 18 million citizens, or over 88 percent of the total number of the voters took part in the elections.

    Uzbek voters cast ballots for the representatives of four political parties - the Liberal Democratic Party, People's Democratic Party, the Democratic Party Milly Tiklanish (National Revival), and the Social Democratic Party Adolat (Justice).

    The voting was held in all 9,035 polling stations, including in 44 polling stations at Uzbekistan's representative offices in foreign countries.

    The election process was observed by nearly 300 representatives from 35 countries, observers from the international organizations - SCO, OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR), CIS Executive Committee, Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and others.

    Additionally, CEC issued mandates to more than 70,000 observers and authorized representatives of political parties participating in the election. Over 340 representatives of the national and foreign media took part in covering the elections.

    The preliminary results of the elections will be announced on Dec.22.

    Uzbekistan's bicameral parliament was created in 2005. Its legislative chamber permanently employs 150 MPs from four political parties and the Uzbek Ecological Movement. They were elected in Dec. 2009 for a five-year period.

    The parliament's upper house, known as the Senate, employs 100 MPs elected in equal numbers, i.e. six MPs from the Karakalpakstan Republic, regions and the city of Tashkent.

    Aside from that, the Uzbek president appoints 16 members of the Senate from among the most distinguished citizens.

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    5
  • Ankara considers construction of ''Turkish stream''
    22.12.2014 12:36
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/08/16/no_image_found.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/08/16/no_image_found.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.22

    By Rufiz Hafizoglu - Trend:

    Turkey considers the Russian proposal to build the "Turkish stream," the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources of Turkey Taner Yildiz said, the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet reported Dec.22.

    He said that this project is very interesting for Turkey.

    Yildiz said that Germany, France and Italy are the partners of the project, and that's why EU policy, directed against the "Turkish stream", causes perplexity.

    During the negotiations in Turkey Dec. 1, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that under current conditions, as well as due to the EU's unconstructive position, Russia couldn't continue the implementation of the South Stream project. However, Russia will build a new gas pipeline system to meet the needs of Turkey.

    Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said on Dec. 10 that the representatives of the Russian Federation and Turkey intend to meet in December to discuss the issue of the new pipeline construction. At present, the sides are analyzing various options of its route.

    "At present, the negotiations are underway at the level of economic entities because they must clearly define the route and consider different variants of the further hub site, the gas pipeline route across the Black Sea," the minister said. "There are different options. So, it is first necessary to analyze all technical and economic indices. Gazprom and Botas are involved in this process."

    South Stream is the transnational gas pipeline project, which was worked out to diversify the natural gas supply routes to European consumers. It envisaged natural gas supply across the Black Sea to South and Central Europe. It was planned to start constructing a gas pipeline from Russia's Black Sea coast, the town of Anapa, Krasnodar region, then across the Black Sea by crossing Bulgaria's coastline.

    ---

    Follow the author on Twitter: @rhafizoglu

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    10
  • Russian FM: We have helped US since 1780, but not calculated its cash equivalent
    22.12.2014 12:32
    http://apaholding.az/upload/images/photos/apa_logo.png
    http://apaholding.az/upload/images/photos/apa_logo.png
    Baku. Rufat Ahmadzade - APA. Russian Foreign Ministry has commented on the statement of the US Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland regarding $20 bln-assistance of the US to Russian people during past 20 years.

    APA reports quoting RIA-Novosti that USNA (the United States of North America) abbreviation has been used on the official Twitter page of the Russian FM: "We have never calculated cash equivalent of the help to the USNA-USA people since November 11, 1780".

    According to Victoria Nuland, since 1992, the US has provided $20 billion to Russia to support pursuit of transition to the peaceful, prosperous, democratic state its people deserve.
    3
  • Domestic, regional problems create difficult situation in Georgia '" former PM
    22.12.2014 12:31
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/05/08/Bidzina_Ivanishvili_albom_080512.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/05/08/Bidzina_Ivanishvili_albom_080512.jpg
    Tbilisi, Georgia, Dec.22

    By Nana Kirtzkhalia - Trend:

    Domestic and regional problems create difficult situation in Georgia, the country's former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili said in his interview with the First Channel of Georgian Public Broadcaster.

    At the same time, the country has all opportunities to move towards its goal, according to Ivanishvili.

    "Our goal is to become a European society by 2030," he said, adding that Georgia should be able to coexist with Russia in peace.

    "The government officials should protect the country from every hardship," the former prime minister said. "We should never think that we will deceive or offend anybody."

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    2
  • Azerbaijani, Russian parliamentarians to discuss cooperation
    22.12.2014 12:26
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/04/30/Azerbaijan_Russia_flags_Album_010512.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/04/30/Azerbaijan_Russia_flags_Album_010512.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.22

    Trend:

    On Dec.23, Baku will host the 12th meeting of the bilateral interparliamentary commission of the Federation Council of the Russian Federal Assembly and the Milli Majlis (Parliament) of Azerbaijan, the Russian Embassy in Azerbaijan told Trend Dec.22.

    It is reported that the Russian delegation will be led by Deputy Chairman of the Federation Council, Co-Chairman of the commission Ilyas Umakhanov.

    From the Azerbaijani side, Co-Chairman of the commission is the Vice-Speaker, Chairman of the Standing Committee on Natural Resources, Energy and Ecology Valeh Alasgarov, according to the embassy.

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    4
  • Women are selling positive pregnancy tests
    22.12.2014 12:21
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450574.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450574.jpg
    Ads have appeared on websites including Craigslist offering the tests for around $20 (ВЈ12.80).

    One ad reads: 'I have positive pregnancy test for those of you who need a little help holding onto your man through the holidays, shoot me a message for $20 each.в'

    Fake positive pregnancy tests have been available for some time, and are advertised on sites like eBay as a 'prankв' gift.

    Another Craigslist post, which has since been removed, asks: 'Wanna lock your man downjust in time forChristmas?в'

    But police have warned how buying these tests in a bid to tie down a partner could be classed as blackmail.

    Gary Mason, of Kansas force in the US, said: "For example, if a married man is having an affair and he tried to break it off with the girl, and she became upset and decided to present this fake pregnancy test and demand money, otherwise she would tell the spouse. That would be a level of blackmail."
    7
  • SOFAZ increases revenues from ACG, Shah Deniz projects
    22.12.2014 12:21
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138039.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138039.jpg
    /By AzerNews/

    By Aynur Jafarova

    Azerbaijan's state oil fund SOFAZ has earned $109.596 billion from 2001 to December 1, 2014 by developing the giant Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli (ACG) block of oil and gas fields in the Azerbaijani sector of the Caspian Sea.

    "The fund gained $14.564 billion from January to December 1, 2014 within the framework of ACG project," SOFAZ toldВ TrendВ Agency last week.

    The ACG fields have been active since 1997. Its production first started at the Chirag part of the block. It was followed by Azeri Project; Central Azeri in February 2005, West Azeri in December 2005, and East Azeri in October 2006.

    The Deepwater Gunashli section launched production in April 2008.

    SOFAZ also said it gained $2.088 billion of profit from 2007 to December 1, 2014 by implementing the development project of the giant Shah Deniz gas condensate field in the Caspian Sea.

    SOFAZ earned some $491 million as part of the Shah Deniz project from January 1, 2014 to December 1, 2014.

    The Shah Deniz field, one of the world's largest gas-condensate fields, was discovered in 1999. Its gas reserves are estimated at 1.2 trillion cubic meters. Overall, the field has proved to be a secure and reliable supplier of gas to Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, and Europe.

    SOFAZ, an entity that accumulates and manages Azerbaijan's oil and gas revenues, was established in 1999 with an asset worth $271 million.

    The main goals of the fund include accumulation of revenues, investment of assets abroad to minimize negative impacts on economy, prevention of the 'Dutch disease', ensuring savings for future generations, and maintaining the current social and economic standards in the country.

    The asset of SOFAZ increased by 4.86 percent as of July 1, 2014 compared to early 2014 reaching to over $37.622 billion.

    Since the first quarter of 2012, the fund started purchasing gold. The amount of the purchased gold reached to 30 tons 175 kg (970,146 ounces) as of April 1.
    3
  • About 3 million people pay contributions for compulsory social insurance
    22.12.2014 12:20
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135930.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135930.jpg
    State Social Protection Fund registered 2,941,308 individual accounts as of December 1, 1news.az reports.

    "In January-November, the figure rose by 9.3%, or 249 951 people," the SSPF said.

    Among the contributors to compulsory social insurance most are men (1 737 136 or 59.06%).

    Among the owners of the individual accounts of the majority are contributors of compulsory social insurance under the age of 30 years (714 444 people or 24.2%).

    Furthermore, 23.9% (702 066 people) of insured - from 30 to 40 years, 21.5% (631 920 people) - 40 to 50 years, 20.4% (601 429 people) - 50 to 60 years, 10% (291 449 people) - over 60 years.

    The SSPF started the process of involving citizens in the payment of contributions for compulsory social insurance from January 1, 2006.
    2
  • Russian stocks to grow as oil prices surpass $62 notch
    22.12.2014 12:20
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135931.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135931.jpg
    The Russian stock market will open with increase on Monday because Brent oil price rose to $62.28 as of Monday morning, adding a positive sentiment, analysts said.

    "Mildening of the situation on the oil market (Brent futures are trading at a level beyond $62 per barrel) may trigger an increase at the Russian stock market in the start of the trading session and may trigger continuation of the already noticeable ruble strengthening on the foreign exchange market," Anton Startsev, Olma's senior analyst, said, ITAR TASS reports.

    The US stock market indices' growth on Friday evening will also contribute to the Russian stock market gains on Monday, Denis Khripushin, analyst at 2trade.ru, said. The Samp;P 500 rose 0.46% and the Dow Jones increased 0.15%.

    The MICEX is likely to reach 1,460-1,480 zone after a moderately positive start of the session, Vitaly Manzhos, analyst at Nord-Capital, said.

    The oil and the ruble exchange rate dynamics will define the Russian market trends in the second half of the session, Manzhos said.

    Release of home sales figures in the US on Monday evening will have a certain impact on the Russian market
    2
  • Egypt security forces kill five militants
    22.12.2014 12:11
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/07/26/isis_militants_260714.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/07/26/isis_militants_260714.jpg
    Egyptian police killed five members of the Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis militant group during clashes on Sunday, Agence France-Presse reported.

    The militants "opened fire" after security forces raided a farm where they were hiding and preparing bombs, Egypt's interior ministry said in a statement.

    "An exchange of gunfire then took place, causing the deaths of five members of the terrorist cell while a police officer was injured," it added.

    The farm was located in the Nile Delta province of Sharqiya, northeast of Cairo, far from the Sinai Peninsula where Egyptian forces launched an offensive against Islamist militants in October.

    A car bomb found at the scene was detonated by remote control, the statement said. Police also seized suicide belts, weapons and ammunition.

    Three of the militants killed in the raid were identified as Abdel Fattah Ayed Marzouk Salman, Hamdeen Salman Saad and Mouaz Ibrahim Abdel Rahman -- the son of Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis leader Ibrahim Abdel Rahman who is currently in prison.

    Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, who pledged their allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) militant group, claimed an October 24 suicide bombing that killed 30 soldiers in North Sinai, a brazen attack that sparked a state of emergency.

    They group says their attacks are to avenge a government crackdown targeting supporters of ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi that has left at least 1,400 people dead.

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    12
  • EВ·phemВ·erВ·a exhibition opens at Baku Museum of Modern Art
    22.12.2014 12:01
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138038.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138038.jpg
    E'ўphem'ўer'ўa art exhibition has opened at the Baku Museum of Modern Art, as the third in a series of young curator exhibitions, supported by non-profit organization YARAT.The exhibition curatorв's idea is based on mythology motifs in artworks by eight artists: Eliyar Alimirzayev, Rasim Babayev, Kamal Ahmad, Zakir Huseynov, Ujal Hagverdiyev, Yelena Hagverdiyeva, Niyaz Najafov and Altay Sadikhzadeh.Every work has a myth at its heart, captured in the lines of classical poetry or portrayed in paintings by prominent artists, in invisible ties that bind numerous paintings and images encoded in literary works, which contain meaningful parallels, symbols and allegories, formed by centuries of history. All of this content, according to the authors, characterize us and our current existence.Cooperation between the Museum and YARAT began more than a year ago as a result of the 'Curatorial and Mediating Practices in Modern Art' master classes held by Sabina Shikhlinskaya, an honored artist of Azerbaijan and independent curator.During 2014, the Museumв's main exhibition hall already hosted the NUDA VERITAS and MEGAPOLIS projects, considered as successful experiments on the reassessment of the museum collection. In both cases, the idea that arose within the framework of the training course expanded to the size of a fully-fledged art project. The project participants had unlimited access to the archives and storerooms of MoMA and thus the audience received a fresh interpretation of familiar subjects.

    /By AzerTac/
    4
  • Why Cuba turned
    22.12.2014 11:56
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138037.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138037.jpg
    ByВ Jorge G. CastaГ±eda

    Former Foreign Minister of Mexico (2000-2003), is Professor of Politics and Latin American and Caribbean Studies at New York University.

    The phone call between United States President Barack Obama and Cuban President RaГєl Castro, followed by the exchange of an American prisoner for three Cuban intelligence agents detained in the US, marked the most important moment in the countriesв' bilateral relationship in decades. Shortly afterward, the US and Cuba announced that they would begin the process of resuming full diplomatic ties.

    At first sight, the agreement looks like a great victory for Cuba, with the US finally backing down from its attempt to isolate the communist island. The reality is somewhat more complicated.

    For starters, this is not the end of the American trade embargo, which can be lifted only by the US Congress. Nor will relations be fully normalized; there will be embassies, but not ambassadors.

    But there is no question that the agreement '" brokered by the Vatican and Canada '" is an important step forward. Travel to Havana for Americans who are not of Cuban descent will become easier. It will be possible to conduct bank transactions between the two countries. Some commercial issues will be settled. The US State Department will remove Cuba from the list of countries that it accuses of supporting terrorism.

    It is true that Cuba seems to have given up very little in exchange. In addition to releasing the American, Alan Gross, Castro agreed to free 53 political prisoners, loosen restrictions on the Internet, and grant access to United Nations human-rights officials and observers from the International Red Cross. These are concessions, to be sure, but not large ones in view of what Cuba stands to gain with the resumption of diplomatic relations after a half-century of isolation.

    Nonetheless, Cuba is in trouble, owing to a crucial variable that probably motivated Castroв's decision: the recent collapse in the price of oil. A series of factors '" the spectacular increase in oil and gas production in the US, the recession in Europe and Japan, the decision by Saudi Arabia to keep its taps flowing, and the economic slowdown in China and India '" have led to a supply glut. And the two countries most affected are precisely those on which Cuba has historically depended to keep its economy afloat: Russia and Venezuela.

    Of the two, Venezuela and its troubles pose the biggest threat to Cubaв's stability. Russia has not supported significantly Cuba since the collapse of the Soviet Union. But Venezuela '" especially under former President Hugo ChГЎvez '" has been an important patron, sending Cuba about 100,000 barrels of oil a day, along with some $5-15 billion in aid every year.

    Those subsidies are unlikely to continue. Indeed, it is likely no coincidence that the talks between the US and Cuba started shortly after ChГЎvez died in 2013. There is little doubt that, in the absence of Venezuelan subsidies, Cuba will once again plunge into depression '" as it did after Russian assistance dried up in early 1990s.

    This leaves Cuba extremely vulnerable. Economic reforms have clearly not had their desired effect. Incomes have fallen. Widespread shortages have fueled rampant inflation, with hyperinflation a growing risk. The currency trades on the black market are at little more than 3% of the official rate. A major political upheaval is becoming increasingly likely.

    In their book,В Back Channel to Cuba: The Hidden History of Negotiations Between Washington and Havana, William LeoGrande and Peter Kornbluh describe how Cuba has consistently refused to offer political concessions in exchange for the end of the embargo or diplomatic normalization. And, indeed, Castro did not offer any in the recently announced deal.

    And yet the economic calculus makes it very likely that change will soon be forthcoming. In the absence of a rich and generous patron, the revival of the Cuban economy will depend on the full normalization of relations with the US '" and this is certain to prove impossible without major changes with respect to democracy and human rights.

    When the history of the present is written, it may very well turn out that it was not force of arms nor the efforts of diplomats, but disinterested interventions by remote oil barons in North Dakota and the Arabian Peninsula that finally unlocked Castroв's Cuba.

    Copyright: Project Syndicate
    9
  • Elton John and David Furnish married PHOTO
    22.12.2014 11:50
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450559.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450559.jpg
    On Sunday the happy couple revealedmoments from their big day on Instagram so fans could share their joy.

    It started on Friday with the pair tweeting a photo inviting basically everyone to follow their nuptials on December 21.

    The night before, Elton tweeted a picture of their boysв' shoes in front of a cosy fireplace.

    The singer captioned the pic: "Our little ring bearers are fast asleep, and their shoes are polished and ready for tomorrowв's celebration".

    Hereв's a round up of the happy coupleв's day so far.
    5
  • Another activist beaten in Armenia
    22.12.2014 11:50
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/05/08/Yerevan_080513.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/05/08/Yerevan_080513.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.22

    Trend:

    On Dec.19, two unknown men beat civic activist Vaginak Shushanyan in the center of Yerevan, Armenia Report news agency said.

    It is reported that the activist wrote about it on his page in Facebook social network, posting a photo revealing injury in the lips area.

    "Police lieutenant colonel said he would cut off the ears of whoever swore at his president," said Vaginak Shushanyan during the protest, which took place last week in front of the Armenian government. "Let him come and stand here, I will curse both him and his president and we'll see whether he can cut off my ears."

    Translated by EA

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    5
  • Washington Postв's coverage of developments in Azerbaijan is biased '" embassy
    22.12.2014 11:35
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/05/24/washington_post_240512.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/05/24/washington_post_240512.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.22

    By Elena Kosolapova - Trend:

    The coverage of the developments in Azerbaijan by the US Washington Post newspaper reflects neither widely acknowledged success nor the robust US-Azerbaijan partnership, Counselor of Azerbaijani embassy in the US Mammad Talibov said in his article published in that newspaper.

    "Contrary to the assertion in the Dec. 12 editorial "Dystopia on the Caspian," the Azerbaijani people today are fulfilling their centuries-old aspirations by building a prosperous, stable, free and a truly independent nation," said the article.

    Talibov said the case of journalist Khadija Ismayilova is going through Azerbaijan's legal system. As recent events in the United States have shown, legal decisions are not always popular and, in some cases, even spark mass protests, according to the counselor.

    Under any circumstances, the process must be respected in Azerbaijan and in the United States, and all citizens, including journalists, should be equal before the laws of the land, according to the article.

    "I believe we'd all agree that promotion of human rights and democracy is best done when one leads by example rather than by mentoring," he said. "This is especially true when the United States speaks to its friends, including

    Azerbaijan."

    Talibov added that voicing concern for humanitarian needs of hundreds of thousands of Azerbaijanis displaced as a result of the Armenian occupation would go a long way.

    ---

    Follow the author on Twitter: @E_Kosolapova

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    11
  • Director of National Security Service of Armenia threatens opposition
    22.12.2014 11:17
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135928.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135928.jpg
    Director of the National Security Service (NSS) of Armenia Gorik Hakobyan called on a number of figures to refrain from "irresponsible calls to insurrection and revolution of force."

    1news.az reports with reference to the "Armenpress" news agency that on the eve at the solemn meeting on the occasion of the professional holiday of SNB, Hakobyan stressed that everyone sees the tragic consequences of the so-called "color revolutions" wave.

    "Today, some leaders are trying to enter the part of society again in a wave of adventure, voiced by irresponsible calls for an uprising to overthrow the power... On our side all necessary measures to prevent any illegal manifestations aimed at the violation of the constitutional order will be taken. This is not a threat, but we see the need to remind," Hakobyan said.
    7
  • Syria downs Israeli drone over al-Qunaitera province
    22.12.2014 11:16
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/08/16/no_image_found.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/08/16/no_image_found.jpg
    The Syrian air defense downed an Israeli drone plane over the southern province of al-Qunaitera on Sunday, the state-run al-Ekhbairia TV reported.

    Citing a military source, the TV said the drone was downed near the town of Hadar in al-Qunaitera, which borders the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, Xinhua reported.

    It said the drone's brand is Skylark 1, said the report, spelling no further details.

    The Israeli air force struck several Syrian military sites over the span of the nearly four-year-old crisis without direct response from Damascus, which gives the downing of the Israeli drone its importance.

    On Dec. 7, Israeli forces hit two Syrian positions in the capital Damascus, striking near the international airport of Damascus and the al-Dimas countryside, leaving property losses only, according to Syria's state-run media.

    The Israeli missiles also struck a research center near Damascus in May 2013 and another site in January of the same year.

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    5
  • Kazakh president ready to be mediator in Ukrainian crisis
    22.12.2014 10:58
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/05/07/Nazarbayev.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/05/07/Nazarbayev.jpg
    Astana, Kazakhstan, Dec.22

    By Daniyar Mukhtarov - Trend:

    Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said he is ready to be a mediator in resolving the conflict in Ukraine.

    The president made the remarks in his interview with local TV channels on Dec.21.

    "I believe Kazakhstan has similar approaches to Russia and Ukraine, we have no clashing interests," Nazarbayev said. "I'm an lsquo;honest manager' who doesn't support any side. This is goodwill."

    Nazarbayev will pay a working visit to Ukraine on Dec.22 to hold negotiations with this country's leadership, the official website of Kazakh president said.

    The next session of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) Collective Security Council will be held in Moscow on Dec.23 with participation of Kazakh, Belarusian, Kyrgyz, Russian, Armenian and Tajik presidents.

    Moreover, the meeting of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council at the level of heads of state will be held with participation of presidents of Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, as well as Armenia and Kyrgyzstan.

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    14
  • Azerbaijan to take part in gasification of Albania
    22.12.2014 10:58
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135927.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135927.jpg
    Albania and Azerbaijan have signed a Memorandum of Understanding.

    During the visit of the Azerbaijani delegation in Tirana, Azerbaijan and Albania signed a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in the development of the master plan for the gasification of Albania.

    1news.az reports that the statement was posted on the official website of the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan (SOCAR).

    The Azerbaijani delegation included Energy Minister Natig Aliyev, Deputy Foreign Minister Khalaf Khalafov and SOCAR president Rovnag Abdullayev.

    During the visit, the Azerbaijani delegation met with Albanian Prime Minister Eddie Rama, Speaker Ilir Meta and Minister of Energy and Industry Damian Giknuri, during which they discussed issues of bilateral cooperation in the energy sector, as well as the construction of Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) and other energy projects implemented in the region.
    5
  • Pre-election ''day of silence'' starts in Azerbaijan
    22.12.2014 10:46
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/10/09/secki_albom_091013_9.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/10/09/secki_albom_091013_9.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.22

    By Elchin Mehdiyev - Trend:

    The allotted time for the campaign related to the municipal election in Azerbaijan, ended at 8:00 a.m. (GMT 4 hours).

    Municipal election will be held Dec.23. Election campaign began Nov.30.

    Election campaign starts 23 days before the election and ends 24 hours before the start of voting, according to the Article 75.2 of the Electoral Code of Azerbaijan.

    Some 37,079 candidates have been registered in order to participate in the current municipal election. Some 18,790 of them belong to the 30 political parties, and 18,289 are non-party candidates.

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    5
  • Iran, P5 1 nuclear talks "constructive"
    22.12.2014 10:46
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/04/09/nuclear_090414.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/04/09/nuclear_090414.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 20

    By Dalga Khatinoglu - Trend:

    The latest round of nuclear negotiations between Iran and P5 1 was constructive, an EU Foreign Affairs spokesperson told Trend.

    The talks were held on the level of political directors (deputies of foreign ministers) in Geneva on Dec.17 and the next talks are scheduled to be held in 2015.

    The EU spokesperson for Foreign Affairs told Trend Dec.20 that "they will meet again in mid-January to continue diplomatic efforts to seek a comprehensive solution to the Iranian nuclear issue."

    Iran and the P5 1 group (the US, UK, France, Russia, China plus Germany) agreed to extend nuclear talks until July 1, 2015 after failing to meet the 24 Nov. deadline to reach a comprehensive nuclear agreement.

    the official added that "the E3/EU 3 (P5 1) and Iran met on 17 December 2014 on Political Directors level in Geneva. The one-day meeting which was chaired by EU Political Director Helga Schmid was serious and constructive".

    The US and its west allies suspects Iran of developing a nuclear weapon - something that Iran denies. The Islamic Republic has on numerous occasions stated that it does not seek to develop nuclear weapons, using nuclear technology for electricity generation and medical purposes instead.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin said Dec.18 at a press conference in Moscow that "We are very close to the settlement of the Iranian nuclear issue".

    Despite failing the sides to reach a comprehensive nuclear agreement on Nov.24, the U.S. State Department's Persian Language Spokesperson Alan Eyre told Trend Dec.10 that Iran and the P5 1 group made "significant and real progress" during the last November meeting that encourages the sides to continue the negotiations.

    The sides made serious efforts, offered new proposals and brought their positions more close to each other, however the agreement was not achieved before Nov. 24-deadline due to remained complicated and technical issues, Eyre said.

    Despite putting July 1, 2015 as the next deadline for reaching final nuclear agreement, Eyre, who has been a member of the US nuclear talks delegation since 2009, added that the sides decided to put March 1, 2015 as a new deadline for a political framework agreement.

    "If the sides fail to achieve agreement on main political principles in four months then the sides can talk to make decision about the process," he said.

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    5
  • Pre-election campaign on municipal elections in Azerbaijan finished
    22.12.2014 10:40
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135925.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135925.jpg
    The Pre-election campaign on the municipal elections to be held on December 23 finished at 8:00 today.

    APA reports that the pre-election campaign commences 23 days prior to Election Day and finishes 24 hours prior to Election Day under the Article No 75.2 of the Election Code.

    The pre-election campaign on the municipal elections to be held on December 23, 2014 as decided by the Central Election Commission commenced on November 30 and finished at 8:00 on December 22.

    The pre-election campaign is conducted by the registered candidates, their authorized representatives, political parties, of which candidacy has been registered, party blocks.

    Under the Article No 8.2 of the Election Code, the Election Day is considered a non-working day within the territory where election (referendum) is held. Thus, according to this provision of the Article, December 23 will be a non-working day in Azerbaijan.
    8
  • Turkey wonв't be concerned about decision of non-acceptance to EU
    22.12.2014 10:40
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/12/14/Turkey_EU_flags_141212.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/12/14/Turkey_EU_flags_141212.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.22

    By Rufiz Hafizoglu - Trend:

    Turkey will not be concerned if the European Union adopts a decision not to accept it to the membership, Turkish Minister for EU Affairs Volkan Bozkir said.

    He said Turkey has carried out over 160 reforms since the start of the negotiations with EU, Anadolu agency reported on Dec.22.

    The official negotiations on Turkey's accession to the EU started in 2005.

    Earlier, Turkey's then Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the EU continues to mislead Turkey [on the accession issue] and this upsets the country.

    Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc earlier said that if previously, 75 percent of Turkey's population supported the country's accession to EU, currently, this figure has dropped to 20 percent.

    Turkey has fulfilled 65 percent of its commitments to the EU for accession to this organization.

    ---

    Follow the author on Twitter: @rhafizoglu

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    3
  • Netherlands to train Peshmerga forces against ISIL
    22.12.2014 10:25
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450523.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450523.jpg
    The Netherlands will train Peshmerga forces in fight against Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant,or ISIL, the countryв's foreign minister announced on Sunday, SIA informs quoting the AA.

    In a joint press conference with Kurdish regional administrationв's prime minister Nechirvan Barzani in Erbil, Bert Koenders said his country would contribute in arming and training of Peshmerga forces.

    Providing humanitarian aid for Syrian and Iraqi refugees in northern Iraq is also on their agenda, Koenders, a former United Nations envoy to Mali, said.

    The Dutch foreign minister expressed happiness at Peshmergaв's gains against ISIL, noting that they allocated $100 million this year in combatting the terrorist group.

    In his part during the conference, Barzani welcomed the Netherlandsв's move to train and arm Peshmerga forces, saying: ''We see it as a very important step.''

    Iraqhas been ina security vacuum since June, when ISIL overran Mosul and declared what it called a caliphatein parts of Iraqand Syria.
    13
  • Armenia violates ceasefire with Azerbaijan around 40 times within 24 hours
    22.12.2014 10:20
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/06/08/Army_Karabax_080612_3.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/06/08/Army_Karabax_080612_3.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.22

    By Ilkin Izzet - Trend:

    Armenian armed forces have broken ceasefire with Azerbaijan 39 times in numerous positions in the last 24 hours, Azerbaijani Defense Ministry said on Dec.22.

    Armenian armed forces located in the village of Aygepar and Mosesgerh of Armenia's Berd district, opened fire at the positions of Azerbaijani armed forces located in the villages of Alibeyli and Kokhanebi of Tovuz district.

    Meanwhile, Azerbaijani positions located in the village of Kohnegishlag of Aghstafa district, took fire from the positions located in the village of Paravakar of Armenia's Ijevan district.

    Azerbaijani positions also underwent fire from the positions located near the villages of Chayli of Terter district, Yusifjanli, Merzili, Garagashli of Aghdam, Kuropatkino of Khojavend, Horadiz, Garakhanbeyli, Ashagi Seyidahmadli, Gorgan of Fizuli district.

    At the same time, Azerbaijani positions took fire from the positions located at the nameless heights of Goranboy, Khojavend and Fizuli district.

    The opposing side was silenced with return fire.

    The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.

    The two countries signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group, Russia, France and the US are currently holding peace negotiations.

    Armenia has not yet implemented the UN Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding regions.

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    16
  • Belarus suffering huge losses amid plummeting Russian ruble '" Lukashenko
    22.12.2014 10:13
    http://apaholding.az/upload/images/photos/apa_logo.png
    http://apaholding.az/upload/images/photos/apa_logo.png
    Baku-APA. Belarus is suffering huge losses amid the weakening Russian ruble, President Alexander Lukashenko said on Friday, APA reports quoting ITAR-TASS.

    "We are suffering huge losses amid the plummeting Russian ruble as it is our main market," he said, adding that 42% of Belarusian exports were going to Russia.

    Along with this, Lukashenko tackled possible devaluation of the Belarusian national currency.

    "Don't rush with this ruble to the exchange offices and don't exchange it for foreign currencies as it will bring consequences," Lukashenko said, underscoring that "the situation is very serious."

    "It all depends on our people whether devaluation would occur or not, whether we send the ruble downhill or not, whether we crush it or not," he said in an address to the Belarusians.

    "This process has the other end which will hit us on the heads mdash; it is a growing demand for foreign currencies," he said. "As the demand is on the rise, then the price of currency is on the rise, too."
    8
  • '˜Prosecutorв' demands life imprisonment for Dilgam Asgarov
    22.12.2014 10:12
    http://apaholding.az/upload/images/photos/apa_logo.png
    http://apaholding.az/upload/images/photos/apa_logo.png
    He also demanded to sentence Shahbaz Guliyev to 22 years in prison

    Baku - APA. A "prosecutor" Karen Gabrielyan made a speech at the "trial" of Azerbaijanis - Dilgam Asgarov and Shahbaz Guliyev - who were taken hostage by Armenians in Kalbajar, demanding to sentence Dilgam Asgarov to life imprisonment and Shahbaz Guliyev to 22 years in prison, APA reports citing Armenian media.

    In July this year Russian citizen Dilgam Asgarov and Azerbaijani citizen Shahbaz Guliyev were taken hostage by Armenians in occupied Kalbajar region. Another Azerbaijani citizen Hasan Hasanov was shot to death. Hasanov's body was taken to Baku and buried. The illegal "trial" of Dilgam Asgarov and Shahbaz Guliyev began in Nagorno-Karabakh on October 27.
    6
  • A sound mind lives in a sound body
    22.12.2014 10:10
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138034.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic138034.jpg
    /By AzerNews/

    By Amina Nazarli

    Good health is a good beginning for all initiatives. It provides us with energy and inspiration to do impossible missions.

    Your outward world is directly interrelated with your status of health. When you lose it, then the system of human values changes ??and your inner harmony disappears.

    As a consequence of malnutrition and being exposed to a contaminated environment, harmful substances in our body began to pile up like a dirt layer that accumulates on the walls of organs and blood vessels.Unfortunately, foods that we eat contain a large amount of preservatives, artificial colors, flavors, adversely badly affecting our well-being and health.

    Of course, our organism is able to cope with accumulated toxins to a certain point, however year after year; we hardly can use natural resources for self-purification due to chronic diseases and stress.

    Generally, our appearance is the main reflector of the toxins excess: skin irritation, bags under the eyes, allergies, feeling tired, lethargy, irritability and other symptoms similar to overwork. Today, many people are experiencing such features of overabundance of toxins.

    To get your life back to normal, you must protect yourself against the clutches of toxins. And here, the first and most effective way is to include certain products in the diet to rid your body of harmful substances.

    Drink plenty of regular water, instead of the countless cups of tea or coffee. Physicians recommend us to drink two liters of water every day.

    Don't be lazy to drink a glass of water with an empty stomach every morning. It will clean your kidneys, which are the main body filter and activates your intestines, which accumulate a lot of harmful substances.

    Become friends with 10 magic foods -- beet, dandelion, broccoli sprouts, wheat grass, flax seeds, lemon, garlic, artichoke, turmeric and apple. They will help you deal with this problem.

    All these products have an excellent component to reduce the level of sugar in blood, improve digestion and clean up intestines.

    A variety of green products-green vegetables, green salad, green onion, green soup and green juice could thoroughly eliminate undesirable toxins from your body.

    "A magic potion" - green tea - is a powerful antioxidant, which is also considered as the secret of longevity. Its daily use is an indispensable tool for toxins output.

    However, water, fruit and vegetables are not the only protective tools against the undesirable "guests".

    It is necessary to do physical exercise regularly. This will allow your body to clean itself from toxins and other harmful substances through sweat. Sometimes, try to do simple exercises sitting in the sauna, which is very well suited for sweating.

    Stream room is not fun for everyone, as here there are some exceptions. People with high blood pressure, those who have heart problems and pregnant women are not recommended to resort the sauna.

    Usually, doctors recommend us to stick to cleaning diets for 10-14 days. It should include only healthy foods, it is necessary to refuse junk food, fast food, cigarettes and alcohol. Specialists promise you a sense of ease and relief from toxins, as well as skin melioration.

    If after all these procedures you still feel bad smell of your sweat, do not worry. This is just a side effect of all diets you follow to eliminate your toxins.

    Alongside with the above features, a modern killer known as stress, which is indispensable in our life has devastating impact on our body. The fact is that stress hormones clog the circulatory system. Release of adrenaline in the blood, in turn creates toxins and slows down enzymes excretion of the liver.

    Avoid stress, hold your inner energy on and do not worry about trifles.

    If you stick to a right diet and lead a healthy lifestyle, you will instantly feel comfortable. Take care of your body so that it takes care of you.
    7
  • Comparing EAU with USSR '˜nonsenseв' '" Kazakh president
    22.12.2014 10:10
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/02/07/nursultan-nazarbaev.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2014/02/07/nursultan-nazarbaev.jpg
    Astana, Kazakhstan, Dec.22

    By Daniyar Mukhtarov - Trend:

    The Eurasian Economic Union (EAU) has no similarities with the Soviet Union, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said during a meeting with reporters in Acorda (Kazakh president's residence).

    Nazarbayev said signing of the Treaty on the EAU in Astana in May 2014 was his idea put forward 20 years ago in Moscow State University.

    "Today the EAU faces a serious risk, honestly, due to the crises," he said, adding that the speculations about losing independence, reestablishment of the USSR are complete nonsense.

    "Those who want to create the USSR have no brain at all," the president said.

    "All this have been left in the past," he said. "The Marxist-Leninist ideology, the Communist Party, the single economic entity no longer exists."

    Follow us on Twitter @
    6
  • President of Azerbaijan allocates AZN 4 mln for road construction
    22.12.2014 10:06
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450511.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_450511.jpg
    President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev signed a decree on measures on construction of the Gusarchay-Pirguluoba-Yeni Hayat motor road in Khachmaz region.

    Under the Decree, AZN 4 mln will be allocated to the Khachmaz District Executive Authorities from the Reserve Fund of the President envisaged in the state budget for 2014 for construction of Gusarchay-Pirguluoba-Yeni Hayat highway in Khahchmaz District connecting six settlements with a population of 8000 people.

    The Ministry of Finance is empowered to ensure financing in duly manner.
    3
  • Azerbaijan sees increase in export of fruits and vegetables by 18%
    22.12.2014 10:00
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135922.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135922.jpg
    In January-November 2014, Azerbaijan exported vegetables and fruits worth $ 268 131 830, 1news.az reports.

    "This is a 17.85% (in monetary terms) growth in export for the same period in 2013 ($ 227 523 180)," the statement on the official website of the State Customs Committee (SCC) of Azerbaijan says.

    On 1 December 2014 the share of fruit and vegetables in the total export of the country amounted to 1.29% vs. 1.13% as for November 1, and 1.05% - on January 1 this year, and 1.03% - on December 1, 2013.

    In turn, imports of fruits and vegetables during the reporting period amounted to $ 22 299 520 vs. $ 25 759 010 In January-November 2013 with a 13.43% drop.

    On December 1, the proportion of fruit and vegetables in the total imports of the country made 0.27%, which is equal to the index for 1 November and the beginning of the year.

    On December 1, 2013 the rate was 0.26%.

    In 2013, Azerbaijan reduced the export of fruits and vegetables by 5.13%, imports - 2 times.

    In 2012, exports of fruits and vegetables increased by 14.29%, in 2011 - by 49.35%.
    5
  • Iran triples gas supply to power plants in autumn
    22.12.2014 09:40
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/04/25/gas_turbine_power_plant_250413.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2013/04/25/gas_turbine_power_plant_250413.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 21

    By Fatih Karimov - Trend:

    Iran has tripled supply of gas to power plants in autumn this year compared to the past year.

    National Iranian Gas Company's Spokesman Majid Boujarzadeh said some 110 million cubic meters of gas has been supplied per day to the country's power plants during autumn, Iran's Mehr news agency reported on Dec. 21.

    Moreover, 85-90 million cubic meters of gas has been delivered per day to industrial units and factories, he noted.

    Some 400 million cubic meters of gas has been consumed by households and commercial units per day, he added.

    The oil ministry will also supply the power plants with 40 million cubic meters of mazut, as well as 20 million cubic meters of gas oil per day during the cold season.

    The Islamic Republic faced severe gas shortages last winter. In addition to cutting the gas supply to power plants, the Iranian government had to decrease gas delivery to petrochemical complexes as well as several industrial sectors including cement producing plants.

    Follow us on Twitter @
    10
  • Turkish company to take part in construction of power plant in Kazakhstan
    22.12.2014 09:30
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/12/24/Energy_electrik_241212.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/12/24/Energy_electrik_241212.jpg
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 19

    By Elena Kosolapova - Trend: Turkish company Eren Enerji Elektrik Uretim AS will take part in the construction of Turgaisk power plant in Kazakhstan.

    The company signed corresponding Memorandum of Understanding and Cooperation on the project of the power plant with Kazakh National Mining Company Tau-Ken Samruk on December 19, the Kazakh company said.

    The project is implemented to fulfill the Kazakh President's instructions to build the infrastructure in the framework of the Concept of Development of fuel and energy complex of Kazakhstan until 2030.

    This memorandum envisages joint implementation of the project on the construction of the power plant on the basis of Kushmurun coal deposit in Kazakh Kostanai region.

    Currently Turkish Eren Enerji develops a preliminary feasibility study of the project.

    Tau-Ken Samruk and Eren Enerji plan to create a joint venture to build power plant and develop coal deposit.

    Implementation of the project will ensure meeting of electricity demand in Kostanai and Aktobe regions, and will enhance the reliability of the power grid of Kazakhstan.

    The Memorandum was signed by Eren Enerji's Chairman of the Board of Directors Ahmet Eren and Chairman of the Board of Turkish company Sembol Fettah Tamince and by Chairman of the Board of Tau-Ken Samruk Mazhit Turmagambetov.

    Edited by CN

    Elena Kosolapova is Trend Agency's staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @E_Kosolapova

    Follow us on Twitter @
    5
  • Yerevan hit its own trap in EEU membership - expert
    22.12.2014 09:25
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135920.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/135920.jpg
    Armenia's accesssion to the Eurasian Economic Union within the internationally recognized borders (that is without occupied Nagorno Karabakh) means that Russia and other members of the union stil consider the occupied Nagorno Karabakh a part of Azerbaijan, and Yerevan will have to accept this.

    According to 1news.az, the statement came from political scientist Rasim Agayev who commented on the statement of the first deputy FM of Belarus Alexander Mikhnevich that 'Nagorno Karabakh will not join EEU after Armenia joins it".

    According to Agayev, the fact that any country can join any bloc solely within its internationally recognized borders is the axiom of international law and Yerevan should finally realize this.

    He reminded that after Moscow supported Armenia's EEU accession, Yerevan started to say that Armenia and the occupied lands of Azerbaijan are allegedly a single economic space. But it was made clear for Yerevan that this is not true and the statement of the first deputy FM of Belarus are yet another proof of this.

    "As a result, Yerevan hit its own trap in the issue of EEU. Armenians understood that no one in this Union, from Astana to Moscow, is joint to interfere with Yerevan's political games", the political scientist said.

    "Armenia could make new initiatives on the conflict resolution and thus bring the new stage of talks closer. However, Yerevan does not realize it. They keep blind. The leadership of Armenia should take a serious and long treatment", the political scientist said.
    8
  • Essebsi leads Tunisia presidential vote: Exit polls
    22.12.2014 09:07
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/12/08/elections_081212.jpg
    http://cdn.trend.az/pictures/2012/12/08/elections_081212.jpg
    After counting most votes in Tunisia's presidential election, leader of the Nidaa Tounes Party Beji Caid Essebsi is leading the runoff polls Anadolu Agency reported

    With 75 percent of votes counted, Essebsi won 54.5 percent of votes, while his contender, caretaker President Moncef Marzouki, clinched 45.5 percent, according to an Anadolu Agency tally.

    There has been no comment from Marzouki's campaign

    Official results are yet to be announced.

    A leading member of Essebsi's presidential team had earlier said that initial runoff poll indications had shown his candidate winning Sunday's vote.

    Essebsi, 88, had served as a parliament speaker under long-serving President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali, who was ousted by a popular revolution in 2011.

    Victory for Essebsi would enable him to consolidate power after his Nidaa Tounes Party won most seats in parliament in October.

    Sunday's presidential election is the first in Tunisia since Ben Ali's ouster.

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