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Ways to Help Underachieving Boys Succeed in School
11.02.2013 09:04
Re "The Boys at the Back," by Christina Hoff Sommers ("The Great Divide" series, Sunday Review, Feb. 3):

The way to deal with boys' underachievement in school is not through "boy friendly" policies like more recess, single-sex classrooms and male teachers but through strong academic climates and clear, consistent information about occupations and the educational pathways that lead to them.

After years of research for our forthcoming book, "The Rise of Women: The Growing Gender Gap in Education and What It Means for American Schools," Thomas A. DiPrete and I found that in schools where academic effort is expected and valued, boys compete for high grades and more often achieve them. Such schools reduce gender gaps and promote healthy, multifaceted gender identities for both boys and girls.

Boys also perform better when teachers and parents help them understand how their future success is linked to their efforts in middle and high school.

Rather than remaking schools in ways that reinforce gender stereotypes, we need schools that set high expectations for student achievement and treat students as individuals.


Columbus, Ohio, Feb. 6, 2013

The writer is a professor of sociology and director of graduate studies at Ohio State University.

To the Editor:

Even in the late 1950s, educators sensed that girls had advantages over boys. They're verbal, orderly, quiet, submissive and cooperative.

Boys? Polar opposites: outgoing, active, loud and unable to sit still. More boys in detention, in special education and suspended. And of course, all the teachers were women!

As a fifth-grade teacher, I found that one solution was a brisk, vigorous outdoor activity session right before lunch. If someone got restless or acted out, all I said was "save that for outside."

The results were amazing. Three boys who had suffered stomach cramps and needed medical attention refused to go to school. Their mothers fought with them every day. But in my class they raced to school. Couldn't wait to get there.

Girls benefited, too. Two who had no friends suddenly bonded with each other, then with classmates. For the first time, girls invited them to birthdays and sleepovers. One had been receiving psychiatric help and medication. Her mother later told me that she no longer needed either.

There are certainly solutions to "boys at the back." Letting boys be boys is one of them.


Hazlet, N.J., Feb. 6, 2013

The writer is a retired public-school teacher.
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    By Orkhan Yolchuyev - Trend:

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    Edited by CN

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  • Russia has no hostile intentions towards Turkey
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    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9


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    Edited by CN

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    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9


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    Edited by CN

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    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9


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    Edited by CN

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  • North-South railway to ensure Azerbaijan, Iran big profits
    09.10.2015 19:59
    Astara, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Temkin Jafarov, Maksim Tsurkov - Trend:

    The North-South railway project will bring great profits to Azerbaijan and Iran, the chairman of Azerbaijani Railways CJSC Javid Gurbanov told Trend Oct. 9.

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    Gurbanov said that the parties must work together on the construction of the railway.

    "According to statistics, the volume of freight transportation between Europe and India is 25 million tons a year, between Russia and Iran - 6 million tons, the Gulf states and Europe - 30-40 million tons," said Gurbanov. "Despite the fact that the shortest way to St. Petersburg, Helsinki, Berlin, many cities of the Russian Federation, etc., passes through Azerbaijan and Iran, almost all the cargoes pass us by. That deprives both the railways of Iran and Azerbaijan from profits. Therefore, we are interested in this railway being built."

    He went to add that the project will be further developed after the signing of the relevant protocols.

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    Edited by CN


    Follow the author on Twitter: @JafarovTemkin , @MaksimTsurkov

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  • Relations with Azerbaijan meet Russiaв's strategic interests
    09.10.2015 19:59
    Moscow, Russia, Oct. 9

    By Orkhan Yolchuyev - Trend:

    Russia and Azerbaijan have set a record in terms of bilateral trade, Dmitry Rogozin, the Russian Deputy Prime Minister, said during the 15th meeting of the Russian-Azerbaijani intergovernmental commission on economic cooperation, Trend's special correspondent in Moscow said.

    "As of 2014, the trade turnover between the countries increased by 12 percent, reaching a historic high of $4 billion," he said, stressing the high level of bilateral relations that meet the strategic objectives.

    "The Russia-Azerbaijan mutual trade volume has increased more than twofold since 2009," Rogozin said. "Today the trade dynamics is one of the best in the CIS."

    Rogozin said that a negative trend has been recently observed.

    "Unfortunately, we saw a decline in the trade rate due to objective reasons as of the first seven months of this year," he said. "The trade turnover reduced 23.2 percent to $1.7 billion. However, the total volume of freight shipments mainly remained."

    Rogozin said that industrial goods and agricultural products play an important role in trade between the two countries.

    "The energy sector also plays an important role in the cooperation between the two countries," he said. "Today, we have discussed the work conducted by the group in the energy sector."

    Alexey Likhachev, the Russian First Deputy Minister of Economic Development, also confirmed the record, stressing that these are the highest figures for the mutual trade volume between Russia and the CIS countries.

    "Over $1.5 billion of Russian investments were made in Azerbaijan through the banking sector and such large companies as LUKOIL," he said. "We also have around $1.5 billion turnover of our services."

    He said that around 600 Russian companies, including those with 100 percent Russian capital, work in Azerbaijan.

    Yagub Eyyubov, the First Deputy Prime Minister, said that the intergovernmental commission is doing everything for the Azerbaijan-Russia relations to be always at a high level.

    "A large number of Azerbaijani people work in Russia," he said. "Nobody oppresses them. On the contrary, all conditions were created for them," Eyyubov said.

    Rogozin also said that some 15,000 students get education in the Russian language in Azerbaijan, including the branch of the Lomonosov Moscow State University.

    "Some 9,000 Azerbaijani people study in the Russian higher education institutions," he said. "This once again shows the high level of relations between our countries."

    Edited by CN

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  • Turkey's membership in NATO doesnв't allow it to influence Russia in Syrian issue '" expert
    09.10.2015 19:48
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Anakhanum Khidayatova - Trend:

    Turkey's membership in NATO doesn't allow it to influence Russia on the Syrian issue, vice-chairman of the Turkish analytical centre Strategic Outlook Mehmet Fatih Oztarsu told Trend Oct. 9.

    "Turkey's possibilities are limited due to its membership in NATO," said the expert. "The only thing Ankara can do is to protect its air borders."

    He went on to add that Ankara is confused and cannot understand what is happening.

    "It seems that the Turkish authorities are still unable to defend their rights," he said. "Turkey adheres to the position of NATO. Ankara still believes that the main goal of Russia is the "Islamic State"."

    Earlier, the Turkish foreign ministry spread the information that the Russian Air Force planes, taking part in military operations in Syria, violated Turkish airspace Oct. 3.

    The Turkish Air Force planes were also involved with the aim of warning following this violation.

    The Russian planes then left the Turkish airspace.

    After the incident, the Russian ambassador to Ankara was summoned to the Turkish foreign ministry to clarify the situation.

    Turkey will not allow the repeated violation of its airspace by the planes of the Russian Air Forces, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said earlier.

    The president stressed that any violation of the Turkish borders is a violation of NATO's borders.

    "I think that Russia will not want to spoil relations with Turkey," President Erdogan said.

    He also said that if Russia loses Turkey, it will lose a lot.

    Last week, Russian President Vladimir Putin appealed to the Federation Council for permission to use the Russian Armed Forces abroad. The Senate approved this request. The head of the Russian Presidential Administration Sergey Ivanov told reporters that the decision concerns Syria and the matter rests in the operation of the Military Air Forces.

    Russia sent military aircraft to Syria after Damascus's request. The Russian Military Forces are inflicting strikes on the positions of the Islamic State terrorist organization in Syria.

    Edited by CN

    Follow the author on Twitter: @Anahanum

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  • SOCAR drills new oil well in Caspian Sea
    09.10.2015 19:38
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Maksim Tsurkov - Trend:

    The State Oil Company of Azerbaijan (SOCAR) has put into operation a new well at lsquo;Oil Rocks' field in the Azerbaijani sector of the Caspian Sea, SOCAR said Oct. 9.

    The daily flow rate of the well No. 2613, drilled from the platform No.418A, is 10 metric tons of oil, the statement said.

    Currently, SOCAR is implementing the program on stabilizing and increasing the oil production volume. To this end, the State Oil Company drills wells both at onshore and offshore fields in Azerbaijan.

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    Edited by CN

    follow the author on Twitter: @MaksimTsurkov

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  • Leyla, Arif Yunusovs, Human Rights Watch spend Armenian lobbyв's money
    09.10.2015 19:30
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Elchin Mehdiyev - Trend:

    Human Rights Watch is not entitled to act as a judge, a prosecutor or a lawyer, Siyavush Novruzov, the deputy executive secretary of the ruling New Azerbaijan Party, Azerbaijani MP, told Trend Oct. 9.

    Earlier, Human Rights Watch urged to release the Yunusovs.

    Novruzov said that this organization has repeatedly expressed its opinion on this issue and each time it heard that the individuals, whom it urges to release, have been brought to justice for their crimes.

    "A long trial was conducted," he said. "Enough facts were revealed in connection with the criminal cases filed against them. The facts show that without working, Leyla and Arif Yunusovs had sufficient funds in banks and real estate abroad through an NGO. This testifies to the fact that the Human Rights Watch and similar organizations made an agreement with Yunusovs and received grants from various institutions by misappropriating them. Moreover, while passing through the territory of the third country, they met with representatives of the Armenian special services and delivered the necessary information and files. Thus, they committed a crime."

    "If they are real human rights organizations, let them comment on the current global events," he said. "There are more than one million refugees and internally displaced people in Azerbaijan, whose rights have been violated by the Armenian side. People are killed in Syria, Iraq every day. The inhuman attitude towards refugees is observed in Europe. But Human Rights Watch says nothing!! Are not the rights of these people violated? And by turning a blind eye to all this, this organization does not cease talking about Leyla and Arif Yunusovs."

    He said that the above-mentioned shows that the real purpose of Human Rights Watch is not the protection of human rights.

    "Leyla and Arif Yunusovs and Human Rights Watch together shared the money," he said.

    "They were involved in corruption, espionage. They were spending the money of the Armenian lobby. Seeing that these crimes are revealed, they begin to voice these statements."

    Leyla Yunusova was sentenced to eight years and six months in prison with confiscation of property, and Arif Yunusov was sentenced to seven years in prison with confiscation of property Aug. 13 according to the decision of the Baku Court of Grave Crimes.

    The court sentence said that both individuals' bank accounts are confiscated, all their property in Azerbaijan, Turkey, and the Czech Republic are confiscated as well, and they aren't allowed to hold any office for two years after the end of their term of imprisonment.

    Leyla and Arif Yunusovs will serve their sentences in a general-regime correctional labor facility.

    Leyla Yunusova was charged under the articles 274 (high treason), 178.3.2 (fraud (by inflicting major damage)), 192.2.2 (illegal entrepreneurship), 213.2.2 (evasion from a large amount of taxes), 320.1 (forging a certificate or another official document providing rights or exempting from duties, in order to use or sell that document, as well as making for the same purposes or selling forged state awards of Azerbaijan Republic, stamps, seals, forms) and 320.2 (use of deliberately forged documents indicated in the article 320.1 of this Code) of the Criminal Code of Azerbaijan.

    Arif Yunusov was charged under the articles 274 (high treason) and 178.3.2 (fraud) of Azerbaijan's Criminal Code.

    A separate lawsuit was filed for both individuals on the criminal case under article 274 (high treason).

    The court's decision taken Aug. 13 applies only to criminal proceedings on the fraud, tax evasion, and others cases.

    Edited by CN

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  • Rouhani condoles death of Iranian general
    09.10.2015 19:29
    Tehran, Iran, Oct. 9

    By Mehdi Sepahvand -- Trend:

    President Hassan Rouhani in a message condoled the death of Iranian general Hossein Hamedani.

    One of the top Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) commanders, Brigadier General Hossein Hamedani was killed in Syria on Oct. 8.

    Rouhani offered condolences to the Iranian armed forces and the nation, and wished his comrades well, IRNA news agency reported Oct. 9.

    Hamedani was killed near the city of Aleppo during his mission to provide consultation services to President Bashar al-Assad forces against ISIL.

    Defense Minister Hossein Dehqan also wrote a letter of condolence on the occasion the same day.

    "By giving his pure blood, [Hamedani] said that Jihad, resistance, and martyrdom will continue until the annihilation of the Takfiri-Zionist terrorist and that of the criminal Zionist [regime of Israel]," Dehqan's letter read.

    Western countries accuse Iran of running military operations in Syria, but Tehran denies the accusations. Iranian officials have repeatedly stressed that they only provide military consultation to Syrian forces.

    Edited by CN

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  • CEC urges candidates to observe law during election campaign
    09.10.2015 19:19
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Elchin Mehdiyev - Trend:

    The Central Election Commission (CEC) gave a number of recommendations at the meeting for holding the election campaign to the Milli Majlis (Parliament) of Azerbaijan scheduled for November 1.

    The CEC Chairman Mazahir Panahov urged the registered candidates to comply with the requirements of the law during the election campaign, adding that legal measures can be made in respect of the candidates who commit illegal actions.

    "The CEC doesn't seek to punish anyone, on the contrary, it wants to create equal conditions for all," said the head of the commission. "Therefore, we urge everyone to comply with the requirements of the law and not to force the CEC to take serious measures."

    Edited by CN

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  • Azerbaijani CEC registers 1,240 candidates for MPs
    09.10.2015 18:49
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Elchin Mehdiyev - Trend:

    As many as 1,240 people were registered as candidates for MPs to participate in the forthcoming parliamentary election in Azerbaijan, Mazahir Panahov, the Chairman of the Central Election Commission (CEC), said Oct. 9.

    He said that some 275 people of them were nominated by political parties, 19 - the AzadlД±q-2015 election bloc, 2 - by initiative groups, 944 were self-nominated.

    The district election commissions have registered about 12,000 observers, while the CEC has registered 166 observers.

    The parliamentary election in Azerbaijan will be held on November 1.

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  • India supports sovereignty, territorial integrity of Azerbaijan '" ambassador
    09.10.2015 18:29
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9


    India supports the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Azerbaijan, the newly appointed Indian Ambassador to Azerbaijan Sanjay Rana said during a meeting with Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov, the press service of the foreign ministry reported.

    The ambassador handed over a copy of credentials to the minister.

    Mammadyarov said that the two countries have good opportunities for cooperation in energy, trade, cultural and humanitarian spheres and the sphere of information and communication technologies.

    Having informed the new ambassador about the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict, the minister said that Armenia doesn't fulfill the requirements of the four resolutions adopted by the UN Security Council and demonstrates destructive position in the negotiation process to resolve the conflict.

    Ambassador of India said that cooperation in the energy sector is the priority, adding that Indian companies are interested in cooperation with Azerbaijan and make every effort to promote trade and economic relations through mutual visits and business forums of the business circles.

    Mammadyarov wished success to the Indian ambassador in his diplomatic activity.

    Edited by CN

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  • Experts claim Iranian gas supplies could reach Europe via Azerbaijani pipeline
    09.10.2015 18:20
    /By AzerNews/

    By Aynur Karimova

    Experts are discussing the possibility of transporting blue fuel from various countries to European customers via the Azerbaijan-initiated Trans-Adriatic Pipeline.

    Senior Energy Consultant Charalampos Pippos, the former Chairman of the Energy Group of the EU Council, believes that the transit of gas from Iran, Iraq and Turkmenistan via TAP is possible.

    ''Under specific positive political and economic circumstances there is still an open possibility for transportation of natural gas through the TAP, which is the vital part of the Southern Gas Corridor, from Iran, Iraq and/or Turkmenistan,'' he told Trend.

    The expert said that Turkmen gas could be transported via an appropriate final link of the route starting from Turkmenistan via Azerbaijan directly with TAP or with another possible interconnector, for example the Interconnector Greece-Italy.

    ''In the case of Iraqi or Iranian gas transportation to EU markets, a new strategic route should be constructed in the Southeast Mediterranean, most possibly as a part of the proposed East-Med pipeline and existing Trans-Med pipeline, again through an appropriate final direct link of this line either with TAP or with IGI,'' Pippos noted.

    The proposed East-Med pipeline would transport gas from Israelв's offshore platforms and Cyprus to the EU through Greece or Turkey. The project has been included in the European Unionв's Projects of Common Interest. The pipeline, approximately 1,700 kilometers in length, is expected to have an annual capacity of 15 billion cubic meters.

    The Trans-Med pipeline is a natural gas pipeline from Algeria via Tunisia to Sicily and to mainland Italy. An extension of the Trans-Med pipeline delivers Algerian gas to Slovenia.

    Pippos believes that while Turkmen and Iraqi gas could become a source for the Southern Gas Corridor in the medium term, Iranian gas could reach western markets only in the long term, given the geopolitical energy developments in the broader region.

    Sergei Pikin, the director of the Russian Energy Development Fund, shares the same opinion with Pippos.

    Pikin toldВ TrendВ that in the coming years, Iranian gas will be unavailable for Europe.

    ''In order to get Iranian gas, it is necessary to build infrastructure. Therefore, at best, Iranв's gas will be in the European market after 2020," he said.

    The expert believes that in order to supply gas to the European market in the future, Iran will be able to use a pipeline stretching from Iran to Turkey, which isnв't fully loaded.

    Iran, which holds 33.8 trillion cubic meters of proven natural gas reserves '" or 18.2 percent of the worldв's total proven reserves '" has pursued multiple projects for years to pipe natural gas to Europe.

    The anticipated lifting of sanctions and the resumption of relations with the West will increase the chances Iranian gas reaching those markets.

    Iranв's geographical location makes it possible for the country to transit gas to markets in Europe only via routes going through Turkey or Azerbaijan.

    Azerbaijan is already on the path to exporting not only its own natural gas to Europe, but Iranв's as well. Although international sanctions are still in place, Tehran seems willing to consider the idea of cooperation with Azerbaijan on the Southern Gas Corridor project, which aims to bring natural gas from the Caspian Sea to the European Union.

    In August, Iran's Communications and Information Technology Minister, Mahmoud Vaezi, toldTrendВ that Tehran would cooperate with Azerbaijan on gas transportation to Europe through the Southern Gas Corridor.

    ''Transportation through Azerbaijan is one of the routes of bringing Iranian gas to Europe,'' Vaezi noted. ''I believe we will be able to cooperate with Azerbaijan in the use of the Southern Gas Corridor. We have held talks in this regard with Azerbaijan's energy minister and the relevant structures.''

    The Southern Gas Corridor is a priority energy project for the EU. It envisages the transit of gas from the Caspian Sea region to European countries through Georgia and Turkey.

    This ambitious project aims to diversify the routes and sources of energy supply that will enhance Europe's energy security. The Southern Gas Corridor project will ensure Caspian gas supplies to European markets for the first time in history.

    At its initial stage, the primary source of gas for the pipeline will be from Stage 2 of the Shah Deniz field. Other sources could also connect to the pipeline at a later stage.

    As part of the second stage of development of the field, gas will be exported to Turkey and European markets via an expanded South Caucasus Pipeline and the construction of both the Trans-Anatolian and Trans-Adriatic pipelines.

    It is believed that TANAP, which will later be linked to TAP, could become a reliable route for supplying Iranian gas to Europe. By joining TANAP, Iran is sure to strengthen Azerbaijanв's regional position as a transit country.

    This will not only bring economic benefits, but also political dividends that will be much more significant. In this regard, Azerbaijan should mobilize its diplomatic efforts to persuade Iranian officials to connect the existing infrastructure to TANAP and TAP.
  • US terminates program of training Syrian rebels
    09.10.2015 18:19
    The United States has terminated the Pentagon's multibillion dollar program of training and sending equipment to the so-called moderate Syrian opposition, The New York Times newspaper reported Oct.9, citing a senior Defense Department official.

    According to the unnamed official, the training of the opposition in Jordan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia or the United Arab Emirates will be suspended and the rebels will be trained in a small center in Turkey instead.

    The decision is linked to the fact that "the beleaguered program had failed to produce any kind of ground combat forces capable of taking on the Islamic State in Syria."

    Since the beginning of the Syrian civil war four and a half years ago, the United States and some of its allies have supported what they term "moderate" armed Syrian opposition factions, as they do not believe Syrian President Bashar Assad to be the country's legitimate authority.

    An international anti-Islamic State coalition, led by the United States, has been training some of these groups, as well as providing them with arms.

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  • Baku hosts Fair Play joint congress
    09.10.2015 18:10
    /By AzerNews/

    By Nigar Orujova

    This year was remarkable not only for Azerbaijan's sports history, but for the history of Europe and the whole world being that Azerbaijan's capital hosted the first ever European Games, said Azad Rahimov, Youth and Sports Minister, in an address to the joint Congress of the European Fair Play Movement and the International Committee for Fair Play, currently underway in Baku.

    Rahimov expressed his gratitude for awarding the venue for the congress and the 21st Assembly of the European Fair Play Movement to Baku.

    Azerbaijan occupies a unique place on the global sports arena thanks to its sports achievements and the organization of prestigious international competitions and events, he said.

    Rahimov further hailed the Azerbaijani presidentв's attention to sports. ''The head of state, President of the National Olympic Committee Ilham Aliyev, pays special attention to the protection and promotion of Olympic movement and values of justice. The athlete's social status is above all.''

    For his part, Christian Hinterberger, President of the European Fair Play Movement, underlined the importance of the congress, recalling that the Fair Play Movement is a combination of social dialogue and understanding.

    ''It is an integral part of sport. At the end of each large-scale sporting event, victories and the Fair Play Movement are always at the center of attention and become a topic of discussion. The Baku 2015 European Games were also organized on the basis of the principles of fair play,'' he said.

    The President of the International Committee for Fair Play, Jeno Kamuti, applauded the accomplishments of Azerbaijani athletes and the governmentв's attention to the development of sport in the country. He also praised the countryв's excellent organization of the first European Games.

    Kamuti noted that Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev was awarded the Commemorative Medal of the International Fair Play Committee for his contribution to the development of sports in Azerbaijan and support of the Fair Play Movement.

    The event featured a video clip highlighting the Fair Play Movement in Azerbaijan and in the world.

    The main theme of the two-day congress is ''Fair Play in Competitive Sport: Making it Real or just an Ideal.''

    The second day of the Congress featured discussions on the cooperation and responsibility of the government and non-governmental sports organizations in preserving the Olympic values of sports and fair play. The discussions are chaired by Katarina Racz, EFPM EC member.

    Addressing the congress, UK expert David Hemery stressed the importance of values in promoting fair games, adding that the responsibility of athletes plays an important role in achieving successful results.

    He hailed the experience of education, business, government and non-governmental sectors in promoting fair play.

    Touching upon the safeguarding of children in sports, UK expert Anne Tiivas in her speech stressed the importance of protecting children against all forms of violence in developing sport in the world, particularly in promoting fair games.

    Following her speech, the guests listened in on a report from the representative of the Organizing Committee of the Fair Play Congress, Salhat Abbasova, titled ''Sport Builds Bridges: But How do We Build Strong Bridges?''
  • Conditions created at universities for people with disabilities
    09.10.2015 18:09
    "Special conditions must be created at the universities for students with limited health abilities."

    According to Oxu.Az, the statement came from deputy minister of education Jeyhun Bayramov.

    "During the construction and repair works at universities, this issue has always been in the focus of state attention and all the same, each university must pay special attention to it," Bayramov said.

    "The Ministry of Education will continue to pay attention to this issue while accrediting the universities."
  • ''Turkey and Russia should maintain normal relations''
    09.10.2015 17:59
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Rufiz Hafizoglu - Trend:

    Russia and Turkey should maintain normal relations, and for this they have serious preconditions, says Taner Yildiz, the Turkish former minister of energy and natural resources.

    Turkish newspaper Haber7 quoted Yildiz as saying Oct. 9 that Russia and Turkey are implementing major energy projects, the construction of the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant being one of them.

    "This project will not be stopped against the backdrop of political misunderstandings between Moscow and Ankara," said Yildiz.

    Earlier, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said during his visit to Japan that other countries can build the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant, if Russia refuses to.

    Erdogan's remarks came days after his country's air space was breached by Russian warplanes participating in operations in Syria.

    Turkey's foreign ministry said Oct. 5 that the aircraft of Russia violated Turkish airspace on Oct. 3, following which Turkish warplanes carried out warning sorties.

    Afterwards, Russian warplanes left the Turkish airspace. Following the incident, Russian ambassador to Turkey was summoned to the country's foreign ministry to clarify the situation.

    The Akkuyu Plant, to be built near Turkish city of Mersin, will be Turkey's first-ever nuclear power plant. An intergovernmental agreement was signed in 2010 between Russia and Turkey to cooperate for its construction and operation.

    The Akkuyu Plant is projected to generate about 35 billion kilowatt hours of electricity per year.

    Edited by SI


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  • Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan Iran introduce single tariff for container trains
    09.10.2015 17:49
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Elena Kosolapova - Trend:

    The railways of Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Iran have agreed to establish a single tariff for the new Uzen-Bolashak-Serhetyaka-Akyayla-Incheburun international railway line, the press service of Kazakhstan Temir Zholy reported.

    Tehran (Iran) has held a tripartite meeting of chairmen of Kazakhstan Temir Zholy NC JSC, the Ministry of Railway Transport of Turkmenistan and the Railways of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

    The parties have reached an agreement on establishing a single tariff across Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Iran for container trains running from China to Iran starting from October 15, 2015. This measure will help to attract maritime freight traffic and increase attractiveness of land transcontinental corridors.

    The sides have also agreed preferential tariff conditions in the territories of the parties for transportation of grain, ferrous metals, aluminum and ferroalloys from Kazakhstan to Iran and further to the port of Bandar Abbas.

    The preferential tariff conditions will help Kazakhstan's export to develop new markets in India and the Gulf countries, said the message.

    The next trilateral meeting of Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Iran heads of railways will take place in December 2015 in the city of Ashgabat (Turkmenistan).

    Edited by CN


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  • Turkish lira to weaken over coming years - analyst
    09.10.2015 17:07
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 7

    By Aygun Badalova - Trend:

    Turkish lira will weaken over the coming years, William Jackson, the economist at British economic research and consulting company Capital Economics believes.

    The country's banks have become increasingly dependent on short-term foreign capital inflows to roll over maturing external debt, Jackson said in a report obtained by Trend.

    By the same token, they are now more vulnerable to any deterioration in global risk appetite. And if foreign funding were to dry up, this could result in a severe credit crunch, he added.

    Economist's concerns about Turkey's banks centre on three things: the sheer scale of the credit boom over the past decade; domination of a sizeable portion (around a third) of bank lending in foreign currencies; the funding of much of the recent credit binge by foreign borrowing.

    "Given the scale and structure of the recent credit boom, it's hard to see how Turkey can avoid a situation in which non-performing loans rise and bank lending slows sharply," Jackson noted in a report.

    "All in all, there appear to be serious vulnerabilities in Turkey's banks. Pinning down the timing of when these problems might come to a head is difficult. But given our view that the lira will weaken further, interest rates will be hiked, and that the economy will weaken, it looks increasingly likely that bad debts will rise and that credit growth will slow sharply at some point within the next few years," Jackson said.

    Turkey's Central Bank adopted a decision in February 2015 to reduce the key interest rate from 7.75 percent to 7.5 percent, which has stayed unchanged since that time, Reuters reported.

    Turkey's currency advanced as much as 1.1 percent to 2.9070 per dollar on Thursday, climbing for a fifth day to the highest since Sept. 1.

    The official exchange rate for October 9 is 2.9410 TRY/USD.

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  • Netherlands, Switzerland, US - main investors in Kazakh economy
    09.10.2015 16:58
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Elena Kosolapova - Trend:

    The Netherlands, Switzerland and the United States are the main investors in Kazakhstan's economy in the first half of 2015, according to the data of the National Bank of Kazakhstan.

    The highest inflow of investments to Kazakhstan in the first half of 2015 was from the Netherlands ($2.134 billion), the US ($1.113 billion), Switzerland ($848 million), Russia ($576.1 million), France ($382.3 million), the United Kingdom ($367.8 million), Germany ($252.5 million), China ($241.9 million), Italy ($230.3 million), Belgium ($229.8 million) and the Republic of Korea ($221.1 million).

    Overall, gross inflow of foreign direct investment in Kazakhstan's economy in the first half of 2015 decreased and amounted to $7.464 billion. In the first quarter of 2015, the inflow of foreign investment amounted to $4.37 billion, in the second quarter - $3.094 billion.

    In January - December 2014, the gross inflow of direct foreign investments in Kazakhstan amounted to $23.711 billion.

    The largest volume of investments in the reporting period fell on the field of architecture and engineering activities and technical testing and analysis ($2.099 billion), the activities for the geological prospecting and exploration ($2.092 billion) and production of oil and natural gas ($1.551 billion).

    The manufacturing industry of Kazakhstan in the first half of 2015 received $1.365 billion of foreign investment, including $898.1 million allocated for metallurgical industry and production of finished steel products, except machinery and equipment.

    The wholesale and retail trade and repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles in Kazakhstan in the reporting period received $962.3 million of foreign investment.

    Edited by CN


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  • NATO recognises Georgiaв's reforms, anticipates ''even closer'' partnership
    09.10.2015 16:57
    Georgiaв's progress of implementing reforms "is on the right track'', says NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.

    Stoltenberg spoke at a press conference after NATO Defence Ministers reviewed the Alliance's increased cooperation with Georgia's Defence Minister Tinatin Khidasheli at the NATO-Georgia Commission meeting in Brussels yesterday, reports.

    The Defence Ministers welcomed the progress made regarding NATO-Georgia relations and discussed ways to further deepen cooperation between the country and the Alliance. Action already taken by both sides was also praised.

    "Georgia is one of our closest partners and we are moving steadily closer together," Stoltenberg said.

    The NATO official said the Substantial Package of assistance agreed a year ago had now become a reality.

    "We have built on our political consultation and our practical cooperation," he said.

    "At our Wales Summit, NATO promised Georgia a Substantial Package of support. And we are delivering."

    "In July we held the joint exercise Agile Spirit. In August I attended the inauguration of the new Joint Training and Evaluation Centre. Twenty allies have agreed to commit personnel to man the Centre and provide support to Georgia's defence reforms."

    "Georgia too is keeping its promise [and] continuing its own reform process."

    The Secretary General reaffirmed NATO's commitment to Georgia's Euro-Atlantic aspirations but stressed the need for continued progress in key areas of reform, including the rule of law.

    Meanwhile at the Commission meeting he said: "Georgia is a sovereign nation with internationally recognised borders. It has the right to determine its own future and its own security arrangements. Yet today, Russia still violates Georgia's borders."

    He called on Russia to respect Georgia's territorial integrity and sovereignty and to reverse its recognition of the Abkhazia and Tskhinvali [South Ossetia] regions as independent states.

    He added improving Georgia's security and supporting the country's Euro-Atlantic aspirations were "vital work".
  • Azerbaijan can become EUв's important commercial partner in region
    09.10.2015 16:49
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Anakhanum Khidayatova - Trend:

    Azerbaijan has a potential to become an important EU commercial partner in the region, the EU's Brussels Office told Trend Oct. 9.

    "Already now the EU is Azerbaijan's main trade partner and one of the key investors," said the EU's office.

    The Brussels Office said the EU-Azerbaijan trade relations can be further enhanced on the level of all EU member states, as a result of a closer EU and Azerbaijan cooperation on trade facilitation, improved competition rules and on expansion of favourable conditions for foreign investment.

    The office said it is desirable to establish a strong and result oriented legal framework for the trade relationship, which could deliver concrete and tangible results by supporting sustainable growth and the diversification of Azerbaijan's economy through investment and cooperation, with a focus on infrastructure, agribusiness, manufacturing, and services.

    "Regulatory approximation of Azerbaijan's trade-related legislation and procedures with the international and the EU standards would be also an effective tool to support the potential of the EU-Azerbaijan trade," the EU office said.

    "The EU is ready to further support and expand the Azerbaijan-EU trade cooperation."

    According to Azerbaijan's State Customs Committee (SCC), in January-August 2015, the trade turnover of Azerbaijan with the EU countries stood at $6,650,455,710.

    As of Sept. 1, exports to EU countries stood at $4,906,329,440, while imports were $1,744,126,270.

    In comparison with the same period of 2014, the exports of Azerbaijani goods to EU countries fell by 38.9 percent, accounting for 59.95 percent of the country's total exports, while imports decreased by 3.04 percent, standing at 29.57 percent of the total imports of goods.

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  • Turkish, Azerbaijani poets jointly work on new songs
    09.10.2015 16:36
    /By AzerNews/

    By Laman Sadigova

    The Azerbaijan Composers Union and the Turkish Association of Science and Art ESAM have been working on a joint project titled ''Mahn?dan '" Shark?ya'' for several months.

    The main point of the project is for six Azerbaijani composers to write songs using verses from six Turkish poets and, in turn, six Turkish composers would compose songs using the compositions of six Azerbaijani poets.

    Turkish composer which take part in the project were ecommended poems of Rasul Rza, Nigar Rafibeyli, Bakhtiyar Vahabzadeh, Mammad Araz, Zelimkhan Yagub and Nariman Hassanzadeh.

    Turkish composers Faruk Sahin, Zekai Tundzha, Pinar Koksal, Ugur Top, Ozgen Gyurbyuz and Yashar Bedyuk have already submitted their songs based on verses from the poets.

    Accordingly, six famous Azerbaijani composers '" Firangiz Alizadeh, Hasan Adigozalzadeh, Javanshir Guliyev, Jalal Abbasov, Sardar Faradzhev, Elsa Seiddzhahan '" composed songs from poems sent by their Turkish colleagues Durmush Kaya, Nedim Ujar, Serdar Ondzhulya, Sevinj Atan, Sevim Yakydzhi and Ekrem Yalbuza.

    The delegation of Turkish composers and poets will arrive in Baku on October 14. They will visit the Alley of Honorable Burial, Alley of Martyrs, as well as the Museum of History of Azerbaijan Composers' Union and the Azerbaijan National Library Writers Union named after Akhundzade.

    The International Mugham Center will host a concert in which the audience will be able to see the results of joint efforts of the Turkish and Azerbaijani cultural figures on October 16.

    The concert will be one more event that confirms the prophetic words of national leader Heydar Aliyev, "Two countries, one nation." It will strengthen the bonds of brotherhood and cultural cooperation between Turkish and Azerbaijani poets and musicians.
  • Turkey invites Russia for negotiations over air incidents
    09.10.2015 16:27
    Ankara has invited the Russian representatives for talks with military specialists on issues of air incidents.

    According to Oxu.Az, the statement came from spokesman for the Foreign Ministry of Turkey Tanju Bilgic.

    "We have sent an invitation for the Russian military delegation to visit Ankara. We have not yet received the response of the Russian side," Bilgic said.

    The Russian ambassador in Turkey Andrei Karlov has been delivered a statement with a proposal to hold the Russian-Turkish negotiations to adopt measures to avert air incidents.

    The Turkish Foreign Ministry earlier summoned the Russian ambassador to express protest over violation of Turkey's airspace by the Russian combat jets.
  • Azerbaijan to double production of building materials
    09.10.2015 16:19
    /By AzerNews/

    By Nigar Orujova

    Azerbaijan plans to double production of building materials in the next five years, according to a draft concept of socio-economic development for 2016-2019, which is currently under review in the Parliament under the budget package.

    ''[In the following years], it is planned to expand the production of building materials and bring quality of the products to international standards. Supplementary investments will be raised in this area, as well as modern eco-designed technology introduced, and exports of local building materials promoted,'' the draft reads.

    The government expects that in 2015, Azerbaijan will produce construction materials in the amount of 580.9 million manats and the growth of building material production will increase by 9.3 percent.

    In 2016, these figures are expected to reach 636.4 million manats and 6.1 percent, respectively, and in 2017, the growth rate in the production of building materials could reach the double digits.

    Thus, when the volume of production of building materials reaches 740.5 million manats, growth will be 13.1 percent, while in 2018 it could come to 910.8 million manat (20.3 percent increase), and 1,080 billion manat (16.2 percent) in 2019.

    However, according to government forecasts, the construction sector is expected decline by 4.6 percent in 2016. The total volume of construction in the next year is expected to stand at $17,465 billion.

    Earlier, Deputy Minister of Economy and Industry Sevinj Aliyeva said the decline of the construction sector continues against the background of cuts in public investments.

    ''Measures to attract additional sources of financing, the use of new financing mechanisms in the housing market and the expansion of mortgage lending are particularly important to revive the [construction] sector,'' she said earlier at a joint session of parliamentary committees.

    The products of construction industry in Azerbaijan include cement, iron-concrete products and panels, cubic stones, brick, glass, slate, asbestos-cement pipe, heat-insulating polymer construction materials, linoleum, plumbing and chemical window and door products.

    The majority of construction projects are centralized in Absheron due to the abundance of raw materials and high demand. Moreover, there are centers for construction material production throughout the country.

    The construction market in Azerbaijan is now going through changes after recent economic shocks '" a fall in oil prices, the devaluation of manat, etc. The overall standstill in the market continues as real estate prices fluctuate.

    The market is expected to refresh in October-end, when the largest construction event in the Caspian region, the 2015 BakuBuild exhibition, will take place. Each year, the exhibition gives new drive for the development of the construction market both in Azerbaijan and abroad by strengthening partnerships between Azerbaijani and foreign manufacturers and consumers of building materials and services.
  • Scottish Wood Group to work on Kazakh deposit
    09.10.2015 16:18
    /By AzerNews/

    By Vusala Abbasova

    The Scottish oil field services company Wood Group will provide the Tengizchevroil crude storage capacity project at the Tengiz field with detailed engineering, control hardware and remote instrument enclosures in order to help increase its storage capacity.

    Wood Group will assume control over the work at the Tengiz field as part of a multi-million dollar contract, which the group had won in Kazakhstan from US civil engineering outfit Bechtel.

    Michele McNichol, the chief executive of Wood Groupв's Mustang division, said, ''We are combining the expertise and capabilities of our automation and controls personnel in the UK, US and Argentina to design and deliver a cost-effective solution that meets TCOв's needs.''

    Kazakhstan, one of five Central Asian countries with rich hydrocarbon reserves, expects oil production at 92 million tons in 2020 in accordance with a forecast of socio-economic development for 2016-2020 approved by the country's Cabinet of Ministers in August 2015.

    The oil production forecast in 2016 is expected to reach 77 million tons, followed by an increase to 92 million tons in 2020, which is lower than the previously forecasted data by about 3.8 million tons and 12 million tons respectively, according to the Ministry of Energy.

    Energy-rich Kazakhstan produces oil mainly from its largest fields: Karachaganak and Tengiz.

    The Tengiz field in the west of the country is one of the deepest and largest oil fields in the world. Total estimated reserves amount to three billion tons (26 billion barrels).

    The Karachaganak field's oil and gas reserves amount to 1.2 billion tons, while its natural gas reserves are estimated at 1.35 trillion cubic meters.

    About 49 percent of Kazakhstan's gas production and 18 percent of its produced oil are extracted from this field.Another large oil and gas field '" Kashagan '" is located in the north of the Caspian Sea. Oil production at Kashagan started in September 2013, but its operations were suspended when a gas leak appeared along its pipeline.

    Kazakhstan produced 80.845 million tons of oil in 2014, including gas condensate, which is 1.2 percent less than in 2013.

    The country saw an increase in oil and natural gas production in January-July 2015, as reported by the country's Statistics Committee under the National Economy Ministry.

    Tengizchevroil is engaged in the development, production and marketing of crude oil from the Tengiz field in western Kazakhstan. Tengizchevroil was founded in 1993 by the Republic of Kazakhstan and Chevron Corporation. Tengizchevroilв's current partners are Chevron (50%), KazMunayGas (20%), ExxonMobil Kazakhstan Ventures (25%) and LukArco (5%).

    Scottish oil field services company Wood Group is an international energy services company with over $7 billion in sales and operations in more than 50 countries. The Group is has three subsidiaries '" Wood Group PSN, Wood Group Kenny and Wood Group Mustang '" providing a range of engineering, production support and maintenance management services to the oil and gas, and power generation industries worldwide.

    Wood Group reported a 7.4 percent decline to $226 million in core profits during the first half of the year and a sharp decline from its production services, which it said was a reflection of lower activity in the North Sea and in U.S. shale basins.
  • Azerbaijan sees first snow of season
    09.10.2015 16:10
    /By AzerNews/

    By Amina Nazarli

    Just a few days ago, many complained that autumn is not in a hurry to reach Azerbaijan, but since October 8, the temperature in the country has dropped sharply.

    This sudden and sharp weather change shocked many people, as the calm weather in the morning did not prepare citizens for adverse conditions in the evening.

    The temperature in the capital stands currently at 14-16 degrees C, while at night it expected to drop to 11-13 C.

    The countryв's capital and regions experienced unstable weather conditions with thunderstorms, and showers. Moreover, sleet was reported in the mountains of the western region of Guba. In the regionв's Laza village, the snow thickness was at one centimeter.

    Snow was reported in more than 40 villages in Guba. The villages most affected were Adur, Budug, Garkhun, Orduc, Khaltan and Zeyiddir.

    The temperature in the regions is 14-18 C and night it will be 9-14. In the mountains the temperature stands at 5-10 C, while at night it will drop to 2-5 C.

    Meanwhile, on October 10, the temperature in Baku will be 15-17 degrees C during the day and 12-14 degrees at night. The weather will be rainy, and in the afternoon northeast wind will blow.

    Forecasters predict that the unstable weather will last for a week.

    In October, the average monthly temperature in Azerbaijan will be close to the climate norm, sometimes exceed it.

    In Baku and the Absheron peninsula, the average monthly temperature will stand between 16 and 18 degrees C. At night the weather will vary between 12 and 17 C, while during the day, it will hover at around 22-27 C.
  • Cekuta: US will help develop Azerbaijan's economy
    09.10.2015 15:58
    At the moment, the economic ties between the US and Azerbaijan are at high level and we intend to strengthen them.

    According to Oxu.Az, the statement came from US ambassador to Azerbaijan Robert Cekuta.

    "For more than 20 years, the two countries have been cooperating closely in the field of oil and gas. I see great potential in other areas. At the moment, we are working in other areas, such as agriculture, the Internet economy, the transport sector. We have a new program of assistance to help the development of these areas," he said.

    According to him, the companies of both countries are working on the development of cooperation:

    "At the moment we are trying to develop the private sector and to create links between the Azerbaijani and American companies and this is done by the relevant bodies."

    The ambassador also noted that they are ready to help Azerbaijan to export local agricultural products.

    "We are working with farmers. We can help you to export locally grown products," said the ambassador.
  • EU to help Azerbaijan to complete WTO accession process
    09.10.2015 15:57
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Anakhanum Khidayatova - Trend:

    The EU is ready to take all efforts to help Azerbaijan in completing the country's World Trade Organization (WTO) accession process, the EU's press office told Trend Oct. 9.

    The comments came with regard to prospects for Azerbaijan to become a WTO member.

    The EU's press office said that in order to achieve this goal Azerbaijan needs to implement important reforms in customs and competition rules.

    "The EU recognizes the work completed by Azerbaijan in the recent years toward WTO conformity and is looking forward to Azerbaijan's completion of remaining reform measures envisaged under the WTO accession procedure. These reforms cover the legal, policy, and institutional framework which bring remaining non-conforming aspects of Azerbaijan's foreign trade regime in line with the WTO agreements," said the EU's press office.

    The press office added that the WTO accession procedure needs to be achieved through harmonization of Azerbaijan's laws with international standards.

    There are no definitions of "developed" and "developing" countries in WTO, according to the press office.

    "Members announce themselves whether they are "developed" or "developing". However, it is through the accession negotiations that members agree on specific level of commitments in each area which most appropriately reflects the individual characteristics and stage of development of any acceding economy," EU press office said.

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  • Turkey to inspect Armenia's military infrastructure
    09.10.2015 15:57
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct.9

    By Rufiz Hafizoglu - Trend:

    Turkey will send its servicemen to Armenia to inspect the military objects and infrastructure in accordance with the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE), the message from the General Staff of Turkish Armed Forces said Oct.9.

    Turkish servicemen will take part in the inspection in Armenia on Oct.11-14, according to the message.

    However, the Turkish General Staff didn't specify the number of the servicemen to be sent to this country.

    The Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) was signed on Nov.19, 1990 in Paris by the authorized representatives of sixteen member states of NATO (Belgium, UK, Germany, Greece, Denmark, Iceland, Spain, Italy, Canada, Luxemburg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, the US, Turkey and France) and six member states of the Warsaw Treaty Organization (WTO).

    Russia adopted a decision on March 10, 2015 to suspend its participation in the meetings of Joint Consultative Group from the next day.

    Edited by SI


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  • Maros Sefcovic: Azerbaijan may become major supplier of gas to EU
    09.10.2015 15:56
    ''One of the major long-term projects to supply gas to the European Union is a Southern Gas Corridor,'' foreign media quoted the Vice President of the European Commission in charge of Energy Maros Sefcovic as saying.

    He forecasts the EU's annual gas demand to be between 380 and 450 billion cubic meters in 2030, which is comparable to the present demands of EU.

    According to Sefcovic, the Southern Gas Corridor is the main project which is designed to bring gas from Azerbaijan to the European Union before 2020. "In addition, we are cooperating with Norway and Algeria. We are preparing a new strategy for liquefied natural gas," he added.
  • NATO steps up recon flights along Russiaв's borders
    09.10.2015 15:48
    NATO has substantially intensified reconnaissance flights along Russian borders, RIA Novosti quoted Russia's permanent representative to NATO, Alexander Grushko as saying Oct. 9.

    "We'd like to note that the number of reconnaissance aircraft flights along the Russian borders has increased significantly," he said during the Moscow-Brussels teleconference.

    "A constant naval presence of NATO groupings in Baltic and Black seas has been in fact achieved," said Grushko.

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  • TAP '" vivid example of co-op between Azerbaijan, Italy
    09.10.2015 15:47
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Maksim Tsurkov - Trend:

    The project to build the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) is a vivid, concrete example of active cooperation between Azerbaijan and Italy, said Chief of the Cabinet of Italy's Economic Development Ministry Vito Cozzoli said Oct. 9.

    He was addressing a press conference in Baku, Azerbaijan, dedicated to the bilateral meetings of the representatives of Italian and Azerbaijani companies.

    Cozzoli said Italian companies are showcasing an increasing interest in Azerbaijan.

    "Azerbaijan has become a very important trade partner for us. Over the past few years [bilateral] trade turnover has intensified," he added.

    Cozzoli also noted that the growth in mutual exports amounted to 15 percent.

    "Both countries are implementing joint energy projects, and TAP [Trans Adriatic Pipeline] is a vivid confirmation of our cooperation," he added.

    TAP envisages transportation of gas from the Azerbaijani gas condensate Shah Deniz II field to the EU countries.

    The approximately 870 km long pipeline will connect with the Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) at the Turkish-Greek border at Kipoi, cross Greece and Albania and the Adriatic Sea, before coming ashore in Southern Italy.

    TAP's initial capacity will be 10 billion cubic meters per year, expandable to 20 billion cubic meters per year.

    Edited by SI


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  • The Guardian: Putin's campaign to derail the west over Syria is working
    09.10.2015 15:38
    If Vladimir Putinв's game plan has been repeatedly to surprise the west and keep it off balance, it is working, The Guardian reads.

    "The scale of Putin's intervention in Syria has certainly caught western capitals unawares."

    The edition says that what appears to be unfolding goes beyond stabilising Bashar al-Assad's regime. The State Duma and the Federation Council earlier claimed that the information about Russia's hitting of non-IS targets is untrue, Oxu.Az reports citing

    "Although conducted under the banner of a campaign against Islamic State, the evidence suggests that the overwhelming majority of Russian targets have been non-Isis groups, some of them supported by the US, others by Turkey and the Gulf states.

    "As the Nato meeting began, secretary general Jens Stoltenberg said the alliance was ready to send troops to protect its southern flank in Turkey."

    The newspaper reads that in recent months, Turkey's allies, the US and Germany, actually withdrew Patriot anti-aircraft batteries, in part in protest at the Turkish government's targeting of Kurdish armed groups inside Syria, seen by the west as a bulwark against Damascus and Isis."

    "Springing surprises puts Putin at the centre of the world stage, the dramatic actor to whom the world is forced to react. This has a narcotic affect on Russian domestic opinion, helped by lots of video footage and graphics of missiles blasting off from ships and travelling hundreds of miles to pinpoint supposedly terrorist targets. In a new poll, 72% of Russian respondents declare themselves in favour of the Syrian adventure." the newspaper reads

    The article also says that standing by and watching Russia self-harm also carries costs for the west, since the bombardment of rebel-held areas around Idlib and Aleppo will boost the outflow of refugees, and put off the prospect of local ceasefires gradually dampening down the wider conflict.

    "The chance of a collision or shootdown between Russian, Turkish, US or other Nato war planes continues to mount, as does the risk of an escalating proxy war." the author says.
  • Azerbaijani delegation to observe presidential election in Belarus
    09.10.2015 15:29
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct.9


    Azerbaijani parliament members will leave for Minsk, Belarus on Oct.9 to observe the presidential election to be held there Oct.11, press service of Azerbaijani parliament said.

    The visit of the Azerbaijani delegation will end Oct.13.

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  • Italy to support Azerbaijan in diversification of economy
    09.10.2015 15:19
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Maksim Tsurkov - Trend:

    Italy intends to provide support to Azerbaijan to diversify its economy, President of the Italian Trade Agency (ITA) Riccardo Monti said Oct. 9.

    He made the remarks during a press conference in Baku on the bilateral meeting of the representatives of Italian and Azerbaijani companies.

    He said that Italy is extremely interested in bringing economic ties with Azerbaijan to a new level.

    "We improve and expand our real partnership every year," said Monti. "More recently, a huge deficit was observed in trade between the two countries, but we were able to increase turnover by five times."

    He went on to add that Italy intends to support Azerbaijan to diversify its economy through increased investment in the non-oil sector.

    "To date, Italy has invested more than $480 million in Azerbaijan's economy, only $120 million of which alone accounted for non-energy sector," said Monti. "We are going to gradually increase investment in the non-oil sector of the economy [of Azerbaijan]."

    Between January and August 2015, Italy maintained its first place in the list of foreign trade partners of Azerbaijan with a trade turnover of $1.95 billion, accounting for 13.86 percent of the country's total trade volume, according to a statistic report from Azerbaijani State Customs Committee (SCC).

    Edited by CN


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  • ''Recognition'' of Nagorno-Karabakh by Armenia threatens peace process
    09.10.2015 14:59
    /By AzerNews/

    By Sara Rajabova

    The former U.S. co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group has warned that ''recognition'' of Nagorno-Karabakh by Armenia will suspend the Minsk process on the settlement of the long-lasting Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict.

    ''Armenia realizes that if it recognized the independence of Nagorno-Karabakh, the Minsk Group process would be finished and there would be no chance for a negotiated settlement,'' said Matthew Bryza, the former deputy assistant of the U.S. secretary of state for South Caucasus, ex-U.S. ambassador to Azerbaijan and director of International Centre for Defense Studies in Tallinn, in an interview with Trend.

    Bryza was commenting on Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandianв's parliamentary speech claiming that in case of military action, Armenia would be the ''guarantor of security'' for Nagorno-Karabakh, which would include ''recognition''.

    ''In this situation, Armenia would face a serious risk of war with Azerbaijan, which it does not want,'' Bryza said.

    He noted that Armeniaв's biggest concern is the security of the citizens of Armenia and the Armenian residents of Nagorno-Karabakh.

    ''I donв't think that Armenia wants to recognize Nagorno-Karabakh or it would have done so already,'' Bryza said.

    Armenia captured Nagorno-Karabakh and seven surrounding regions from Azerbaijan in a war that followed the Soviet breakup of 1991. More than 20,000 Azerbaijanis were killed and nearly 1 million were displaced as a result of the war.

    Large-scale hostilities ended with a Russia-brokered ceasefire in 1994 but Armenia continued the occupation in defiance of four UN Security Council resolutions calling for an immediate and unconditional withdrawal. Peace talks mediated by Russia, France and the U.S. have produced no results so far.

    He considered that the biggest power in the region '" Russia '" does not want a war between Armenia and Azerbaijan either.

    ''Russia wants exactly what is happening now, no peace no war. This status allows Russia to manipulate the situation. So, the only country benefiting from the current situation is Russia. Armenia is not benefiting because it doesnв't want the resumption of armed hostilities, Azerbaijan is not benefiting either, because it wants a negotiated settlement,'' Bryza said.

    Nalbandianв's statement is a diplomatic gesture within the context of the broader negotiations process, he added.

    ''The threat to use military force is a diplomatic tool that aims to achieve certain political objectives, albeit a fierce tool and usually one of last resort. We all know that military theorist Carl von Clausewitz said war is the continuation of politics by other means, which means that diplomacy and military force are tied together,'' Bryza said.

    Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry stated that in continuing to grossly violate the generally accepted norms and principles of international law and the requirements of the UN Security Council resolutions on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Armenia implements a policy of maintaining the status quo based on occupation and aggression.
  • Turkey to send servicemen to Armenia
    09.10.2015 14:59
    Turkey will send a group of servicemen to Armenia in the framework of the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces (CFE) in Europe, said the statement from the Turkish General Staff on Oct.9, according to the Turkish Hurriyet newspaper.

    Turkey will control the inspections to be held as part of the CFE in Armenia on October 11, said the statement.

    "The Turkish control group will also include a serviceman from Slovakia. After the implementation of inspections, the servicemen will return to Turkey on October 14," said the statement.
  • Dazzling performance of Midsummer Night's Dream stuns audience in Baku
    09.10.2015 14:50
    /By AzerNews/

    By Amina Nazarli

    Bakuв's Rashid Behbudov Music Theater hosted a very special and exciting performance of ''A Midsummer Nightв's Dream'' by the prominent, William Shakespeare, during the nights of October 7 and 8.A dazzling and modern performance of the play stunned locals and foreigners alike in the capital.The touring play featured a TISA high school cast, with a TISA high school rock band and one special rock-guitar guest from TISA primarily school.

    Directed by Alexander Gardner-McTaggart and with Musical Director Margus Glanville, ''The Dream'' attracted a sufficiently wide foreign audience in Baku.

    The romantic comedy classic combined the music and dance of the Caucasian region, with a live rock band and a hint of the Renaissance. The combination made a worthy connection between Azerbaijan and classical Western drama.

    The high school students were brilliant in their performances. It was obvious that they had worked hard, bringing about roaring cheers from the audiences.

    Although the cast involved amateur actors, some professional actors and actress could even be envious of the studentsв' talent. Many of the performers were both singing, playing different musical instruments and had entered their characters perfectly.

    "A Midsummer Night's Dream" is believed to have been written between 1590 and 1597.

    The plot of the play starts with Hermia and Lysander, two young loves, who are about to run off with each other. Hermiaв's father her to marry Demetrious and Demetrious wants to marry Hermia, all while Helena wants to marry Demetrious, but he is bored of her, and is attracted to Hermia. It could all be so perfect: Hermia with Lysander, Helena with Demetrius ... if only Demetrius loved Helena! Enter the king of the Elementals, Oberon, armed with magic. He sees this unfold, and tells his servant Puck to use a magic flower to right the wrong. The craftsmen enter the forest to practice their play, their lead actor, Bottom, the prima donna is sighted by Puck ... Fortunately it all ends well, as the scenario is planned by the king.
  • Uzbek, Turkmen presidents mull situation in Afghanistan
    09.10.2015 14:50
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Elena Kosolapova - Trend:

    Presidents of Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, Islam Karimov and Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov met in Tashkent to discuss the current state and prospects of further development of the two countries' cooperation.

    Earlier, Berdimuhamedov arrived in Uzbekistan for an official visit.

    During the meeting, the presidents exchanged views on pressing regional and international issues, said the Uzbek president's press service Oct. 9.

    While discussing the situation in Afghanistan, they reiterated the impossibility of establishing peace in that country through the use of military force.

    The presidents also discussed cooperation in the fight against threats such as terrorism, organized crime and drug trafficking.

    The parties also discussed the use of water of transboundary rivers.

    During the meeting, it was stressed that issues related to water and energy sector should be reviewed on the basis of universally recognized norms and principles of international law, taking into account the interests of all states in the region and with participation of international organizations.

    It was noted that in dealing with the construction of large hydropower plants on transboundary rivers, it is necessary to fully comply with the relevant UN conventions.

    During the talks, the sides also discussed the issues related to raising the volume of trade turnover, increasing the number of joint enterprises and developing the cooperation between the businessmen.

    Following the negotiations, Islam Karimov and Gurbanguly Berdimuhammadov signed a joint declaration. Moreover, the governments, ministries and other structures of the two countries signed documents on further developing the relations in the spheres of economy, transport, customs, tourism, science and technologies, health care and sports.

    The volume of trade turnover between Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan is growing consistently - it has tripled over the last six years. The volume of trade turnover between the two countries stood at $413 million as of 2014 and $245 million in Jan.-Aug. 2015.

    Uzbekistan exports vehicles, fertilizers, agricultural products, construction materials, electrical and mechanical equipment, metal products and services in various fields to Turkmenistan.

    This is while Turkmenistan exports petroleum products, polymers of propylene and other chemical products to Uzbekistan.

    The economic potential of the two countries creates opportunities for further expanding the cooperation.

    According to the intergovernmental agreement on mutual deliveries and the treaty on economic cooperation for 2013-2017 signed in 2012, consistent work to further diversify and increase trade volumes is carried out.

    Transport communications are another priority area of cooperation between Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. Roads and railways of the two countries are a well-integrated system and profitable transit complex for other countries as well. In this sense, an agreement to build a new Uzbekistan-Turkmenistan-Iran-Oman international transport corridor signed in 2011 has geostrategic importance.

    Both Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan are rich in hydrocarbon resources. Their export requires coordinated action. Close cooperation creates opportunities for diversification of energy industries and access to world markets for the two countries. Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan-Kazakhstan-China gas pipeline, which was commissioned in 2009 and increases its capacity, is a vivid example of this fact.


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  • Kazakh, Ukrainian presidents discuss intensification of economic cooperation
    09.10.2015 14:49
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Elena Kosolapova - Trend:

    Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, who paid an official visit to Kazakhstan, discussed the ways of strengthening the cooperation in trade-economic sphere, the coal industry, transport and logistics area and the agro-industrial complex, the press-service of the Kazakh president said Oct. 9.

    Moreover, the presidents exchanged views on relevant issues of the international agenda, including the situation in the southeast of Ukraine and the course of implementing the Minsk agreements.

    President Nazarbayev welcomed his counterpart Poroshenko's first official visit to Kazakhstan, which will help improve the economic cooperation and consider regional and international issues, the statement said.

    President Poroshenko stressed the numerous political, economic, cultural-humanitarian and social ties between the two countries.

    President Poroshenko stressed the interest in intensifying the all-round cooperation between the two countries in various fields and appreciated President Nazarbayev's efforts to assist in maintaining peace in Ukraine.

    President Poroshenko also congratulated his counterpart Nazarbayev on the 550th anniversary of the Kazakh Khanate, stressing the importance of this anniversary, which is a symbol of statehood, deep historical roots of the country.

    Edited by CN

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  • Azerbaijan '" first country in CIS for volume of investments in its economy
    09.10.2015 14:49
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct.9

    By Anvar Mammadov - Trend:

    Azerbaijan significantly outstrips the neighboring countries for the economic growth, Ziyad Samadzade, head of Azerbaijani parliament's economic policy committee said Oct.9.

    The MP made the remarks during the 5th Eurasian Forum of Accountants and Auditors in Baku.

    Rapid economic development has been observed in Azerbaijan over the last 10 years, said Samadzade.

    The country's GDP has grown by 3.6 times, the currency reserve, the number of social programs has increased and the poverty level has dropped from 49 percent to 5 percent during this period, the MP added.

    All these factors prove Azerbaijan's successful economic development, according to Samadzade.

    Despite the difficult situation in the region, Azerbaijan has not only preserved its investment attractiveness, but also took the lead in CIS for the volume of investments made in the country, according to the MP.

    He noted that around $200 billion worth investments have been made in Azerbaijan's economy over the last 10-15 years which is the highest level in CIS.

    Although the Azerbaijan lands have been occupied by Armenia for over 20 years, the volume of investments in Azerbaijan is by 8-9 percent more than the volume of investments which Armenia has made in its economy, the MP added.

    Edited by SI


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  • Iranian commander killed in Syria
    09.10.2015 14:49
    Iranian military commander Brigadier General Hossein Hamedani has been killed in Syria.

    Iranian military commander Brigadier General Hossein Hamedani has been killed in Syria, where he was giving military advice to the Syrian army in its fight against Takfiri militants in the Arab country.

    Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) said in a statement carried by Sepah News on Friday that Brig. Gen. Hamedani, a commander with the IRGC, had been killed by Takfiri Daesh terrorists during an advisory mission on the outskirts of the Syrian city of Aleppo the night before.

    Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. Around 250,000 people have lost their lives and millions more been displaced in the crisis. Takfiri terrorist groups, including Daesh and the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda (al-Nusra Front), have been engaging in a terror campaign in Syria.

    The Syrian military has been fighting the terrorist groups for over four years.

    Iran has been offering Syria military advice in its fight against terrorist groups.
  • Azerbaijan to join international book fair in Germany
    09.10.2015 14:41
    An Azerbaijani delegation led by first Deputy Minister of Culture and Tourism Vagif Aliyev will participate in the international book fair in Frankfurt, Germany.

    The Frankfurt Book Fair is the world's largest trade fair for books, based on the number of publishing companies represented, as well as the number of visitors.

    It is held annually in mid-October at the Frankfurt Trade Fair grounds in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. The first three days are restricted exclusively to trade visitors; the general public can attend on the last two.

    Representatives from book publishing and multimedia companies from all over the world come to the Frankfurt Book Fair in order to negotiate international publishing rights and licensing fees. The fair is organised by a subsidiary company of the German Publishers and Booksellers Association. For five days more than 7,000 exhibitors from over 100 countries and more than 286,000 visitors take part. The Frankfurt Book Fair is considered to be the most important book fair in the world for international deals and trading.

    /By AzerTac/
  • Privatization of public universities, hospitals on agenda
    09.10.2015 14:40
    /By AzerNews/

    By Vusala Abbasova

    The government is considering the opportunity to privatize public universities and hospitals in the country.

    This was stated by Azerbaijani MP Gudrat Hasanguliyev during a discussion of the draft state budget for 2016-2019 at a joint session of the parliamentary committees on science and education, legal policy and state structure, regional issues, culture, human rights, international affairs and inter-parliamentary relations.

    Hasanguliyev mentioned that this system is popular in many countries around the world and what is more important, it brings effective results.

    In turn, the privatization of the public universities and hospitals will be a source for bringing additional incomes to the public budget and, as a result, it will significantly reduce the load on it, he said.

    Considering the recent statement about the decline of state budget revenues by 12.1 percent forecasted for the current year, the privatization of the public universities and hospitals could play a role in additional incomes to the state's treasury.

    Economy expert Oktay Hagverdiyev, however, considers the privatization of all public universities to have negative results for the country, as this system can deter potential students from studying in the universities.

    He believes that the governmental policy cannot be completely given to the private sector as the country is interested in creating specialists in different spheres of activity.

    The budget of the country will be provided with additional sources of income with adoption of a paid educational system, but it could result in poor-quality education, economist Vugar Bayramov told Azernews.

    He believes that it is needed to consider each university in an individual manner.

    Azerbaijan couldn't provide so many universities with financing, therefore, the country faced necessity to open paid faculties, Hagverdiyev added.

    He cited as an example the U.S., where this system is popular. ''But this country has passed all stages of the educational system, while Azerbaijan hasn't, therefore, our country isn't ready for such radical changes,'' he said.

    Currently, Azerbaijan has 52 public and private state universities.
  • Yerevan neglects position of intв'l community
    09.10.2015 14:40
    /By AzerNews/

    By Sara Rajabova

    Unable to withstand Azerbaijan on the frontline, the Armenian government constantly threatens Baku to recognize the puppet separatist regime that Yerevan had established in the occupied Azerbaijani territories.

    Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian has recently said in the countryв's parliament that in case of military action, Armenia will take all the necessary steps as the ''guarantor of security'' of Nagorno-Karabakh, including ''recognition''.

    However, such a statement by the Armenian government official once again demonstrates this countryв's ignorance, disregard for international law and disrespect to the position of the international community.

    ''Armenia, by showing a complete disregard for the position of the international community and by continuing to grossly violate the generally accepted norms and principles of international law, as well as the requirements of the UN Security Council resolutions on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, implements a policy of maintaining the status quo based on occupation and aggression,'' Hikmet Hajiyev, the Azerbaijani foreign ministry spokesperson said, commenting on the statement made by Nalbandian,В TrendВ reported.

    Hajiyev stated that in his speech during the 70th session of the UN General Assembly, Azerbaijanв's Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov once again clearly expressed the countryв's unwavering position on the process of conflict settlement.

    ''Mammadyarov reiterated that the Nagorno-Karabakh region has always been and will remain the integral part of Azerbaijan,'' the official noted.

    Hajiyev said Azerbaijan will never accept the occupation of its territories and the conflict can only be resolved within its territorial integrity, sovereignty and internationally recognized borders, adding that the international community also strongly supports this position.

    ''The internationally recognized borders of states canв't be changed by the use of force,'' he said.

    As Hajiyev said, during the 70th Session of the UN General Assembly, Elmar Mammadyarov reminded that if Armenia, following negotiations, doesnв't fully and unconditionally withdraw its military from the occupied territories, Azerbaijan will have to exercise its right '"in line with the UN Charterв's Article 51 '" to restore the sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders.

    ''In such a case, all responsibility rests solely on Armenia as an occupant country,'' Hajiyev emphasized.

    He noted that the sooner Armenia realizes this reality, the faster the conflict will be solved, and the countries and peoples of the region will benefit from cooperation and economic development.

    Meanwhile, Azerbaijanв's political scientist assessed Nalbandianв's statement as outright stupidity.

    Fikret Sadikhov, professor of Western University said if Azerbaijan decides to liberate its territories, Yerevanв's ''recognition'' of Nagorno-Karabakh will be nothing but empty words.

    Armenia occupied over 20 percent of Azerbaijan's internationally recognized territory, including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent regions, after laying territorial claims against its South Caucasus neighbor, causing a brutal war in the early 1990s. Long-standing efforts by U.S, Russian and French mediators have been largely fruitless so far.

    As a result of the military aggression of Armenia, over 20,000 Azerbaijanis were killed, 4,866 were reported missing, almost 100,000 were injured, and 50,000 were left disabled.

    The UN Security Council has passed four resolutions on the Armenian withdrawal from Azerbaijani territories, but they have not been enforced to this day.
  • Italy invests over $480M in Azerbaijanв's economy
    09.10.2015 14:29
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Maksim Tsurkov - Trend:

    The volume of investments made by Italy in Azerbaijan's economy has exceeded $480 million, Azerbaijan's Deputy Minister of Economy and Industry Sahib Mammadov said Oct. 9.

    He made the remarks during a press conference on the bilateral meetings between the representatives of Italian and Azerbaijani companies.

    The two countries have great potential to further develop their economic relations, the deputy minister said, adding that the relations between these countries are on the rise in all spheres, including in economy.

    Furthermore, Mammadov said that Italy is the main foreign trade partner of Azerbaijan.

    He pointed out that the trade turnover between the two countries exceeded $5 billion in 2014 and neared $1.8 billion in the first eight months of 2015.

    The deputy minister said that 66 companies with Italian investments operate in Azerbaijan and eight of them are the subcontractors in the projects financed by the public sector.

    He noted that very favorable investment and business climate has been created in Azerbaijan.

    Edited by CN


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  • Demand of releasing Leyla and Arif Yunusovs contradicts intв'l standards
    09.10.2015 14:29
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Elchin Mehdiyev - Trend:

    Leyla and Arif Yunusovs have been punished for their crimes and an international organization's demand to release them contradicts the international standards, Elman Mammadov, Azerbaijani MP, told Trend Oct. 9.

    Earlier, Human Rights Watch urged to release the Yunusovs.

    Mammadov recalled that the investigative measures were conducted as part of the criminal cases filed against the Yunusovs, adding that the trial was conducted absolutely transparently in accordance with the laws of Azerbaijan.

    "Some international groups stand for such individuals as Leyla and Arif Yunusovs and others claiming that their rights are allegedly violated and that these people have been arrested for political reasons," he said.

    "These organizations do not protect human rights," he said. "There are more than one million refugees and internally displaced people in Azerbaijan whose rights have been grossly violated by Armenia. Did these organizations say anything to support them up till now? However, they are engaged in the protection of three to four people who have committed crimes."

    "In fact, these organizations are engaged in destructive activity in Azerbaijan and make provocations against Azerbaijani statehood," he said.

    "The Yunusovs and others are the organizers of the spy network created by these organizations in Azerbaijan," he said.

    Mammadov said that when the activity of this network is suppressed, these organizations begin to get nervous.

    "They are well aware that they stand against the international law and laws by their actions and the attempts to interfere in the internal affairs of Azerbaijan," he said. "These organizations are trying to protect their spy networks. That's why, they conduct a smear campaign against Azerbaijan."

    Leyla Yunusova was sentenced to eight years and six months in prison with confiscation of property, and Arif Yunusov was sentenced to seven years in prison with confiscation of property Aug. 13 according to the decision of the Baku Court of Grave Crimes.

    The court sentence said that both individuals' bank accounts are confiscated, all their property in Azerbaijan, Turkey, and the Czech Republic are confiscated as well, and they aren't allowed to hold any office for two years after the end of their term of imprisonment.

    Leyla and Arif Yunusovs will serve their sentences in a general-regime correctional labor facility.

    Leyla Yunusova was charged under the articles 274 (high treason), 178.3.2 (fraud (by inflicting major damage)), 192.2.2 (illegal entrepreneurship), 213.2.2 (evasion from a large amount of taxes), 320.1 (forging a certificate or another official document providing rights or exempting from duties, in order to use or sell that document, as well as making for the same purposes or selling forged state awards of Azerbaijan Republic, stamps, seals, forms) and 320.2 (use of deliberately forged documents indicated in the article 320.1 of this Code) of the Criminal Code of Azerbaijan.

    Arif Yunusov was charged under the articles 274 (high treason) and 178.3.2 (fraud) of Azerbaijan's Criminal Code.

    A separate lawsuit was filed for both individuals on the criminal case under article 274 (high treason).

    The court's decision taken Aug. 13 applies only to criminal proceedings on the fraud, tax evasion, and others cases.

    Edited by CN

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  • Cekuta: US concerned over escalation of violence on contact line
    09.10.2015 14:29
    US does not consider the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict frozen, US Ambassador to Azerbaijan Robert Cekuta told reporters on Friday.

    he US is very concerned over the escalation of violence on the contact line of Azerbaijani and Armenian troops, the ambassador said, adding the US co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group James Warlick along with his Russian and French counterparts is dealing with this issue.

    "What we talked to both sides about is that they need to take steps back to improve the situation. People think this is a frozen conflict. If people are dying, this is not a frozen conflict. We are trying to work with the parties to find a way forward. All the parties need to take steps to reduce the tensions and help find a way forward," he said.
  • Azerbaijan's permanent mission to OSCE issues statement
    09.10.2015 14:09
    Permanent mission of the Republic of Azerbaijan to the OSCE issued a statement on ''Situation in the occupied territories of the Republic of Azerbaijan'' at the 1070th meeting of the Permanent Council on October 8, 2015.

    The statement says:

    "Unlike other protracted conflicts in the OSCE area, the occupied Nagorno Karabakh region and seven adjacent districts are ethnically cleansed from Azerbaijanis and since 1988 Azerbaijan hosts more than one million of refugees and IDPs on its territory. The Minsk process launched since 1992 so far yielded no result and the conflict remains unresolved until this moment. As the Minsk Group and its Co-chairmen are unable by peaceful means to end this injustice inflicted 2 upon Azerbaijani people, we more frequently observe attempts to freeze the conflict, rather than to resolve it. Every initiative suggested by us in the OSCE with a view to improve effectiveness and accountability of the Minsk process mediated by the OSCE Minsk Group co-Chairmen faces immediate opposition by Armenia. Our appeals to the mediating countries and Minsk Group members to persuade Armenia to do, at least very small steps in Vienna to advance negotiation process lacks the support of OSCE participating States. Such an indifferent attitude demonstrated by the OSCE Minsk Group creates an impression that the OSCE is satisfied with the current status quo in the occupied territories and the major concern is to prevent any further outbreak of hostilities.

    The statement says that Armenian President openly challenges the territorial integrity and internationally recognized sovereignty of Azerbaijan

    The Armenian president openly challenges the territorial integrity and internationally recognized sovereignty of Azerbaijan and through such actions violates fundamental principles of the Helsinki Final Act and relevant resolutions of the United Nations Security Council. However, it looks like that in view of the Co-chairs that is ok as long as active military hostilities are not taking place. In the same vein, while the co-Chairmen of the Minsk Group put the responsibility to achieve progress in conflict resolution completely on two sides and cannot offer anything better than freezing the status quo, the Minsk Group and other OSCE participating States satisfy themselves only with extending their formal support to the efforts of co-Chairs. We hear strong support to the resolution of other protracted conflicts in the OSCE area on the basis of sovereignty and internationally recognized territories of conflict-affected countries extended by many OSCE participating States. In the meantime, with the exception of few colleagues, we hardly witness the same principled position by the OSCE Delegations in respect to the resolution of Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict, despite the fact that on bilateral level all OSCE participating States publicly extended their support to the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan.

    Our Delegation wishes to reiterate that calls for introduction of such measures as investigation mechanism, withdrawal of snipers or deployment of OSCE monitors along the line of confrontation in absence of withdrawal of the Armenian troops cannot be considered, because in reality it would mean to surrender to the result of continued use of force by Armenia and occupation of the territories of Azerbaijan. In fact suggesting such measures and extending support to them under continued illegal presence of the Armenian troops in the territories of Azerbaijan is in defiance of the United Nations Security Council resolutions and relevant OSCE decisions, which explicitly demanded to unconditionally, immediately and completely withdraw the occupying troops from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan and called for deployment of the OSCE multinational peacekeeping force. These are the 3 objectives and sequence of the conflict resolution process. What is required from the mediators and the Minsk Group is to put these objectives as a priority into their agenda and mobilize international pressure on Armenia to end the occupation of the territories of Azerbaijan in line with the resolutions of the United Nations Security Council.

    In light of all continuous sufferings of our people and our acceptance to make peace with Armenia on the basis of international law, the Delegation of Azerbaijan is prompted to ask the Co-chairing countries, members of the Minsk Group and other OSCE participating States if this situation serves the cause of peace and those who believe in political resolution of the conflict? Or does it serve the interests and aggressive ambitions of the current Armenian government, making them confident that they are above the law and principles that govern this House?"

    Azerbaijan remains the most interested party in the achievement of just and durable peace. However, as long as Armenia refuses to withdraw its troops from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan, prevents the return of all displaced population to their homes of origin and the Minsk Group and its co-chairs take no action to persuade Armenia to abide by its commitments and obligations, we are left with no choice but to insist that we will not remain the only side bound to implement the commitments and agreements. Finally, I suggest the distinguished Ambassador of Armenia to take a constructive approach here in Vienna as it is primarily in the interests of our region and our future generations to move the negotiations forward. I hope that he will seriously consider the challenges to the Minsk process and looking to the future will accept for the entire people of Azerbaijan what he accepts for the people of Armenia."
  • NBCOs in Azerbaijan need cheap resources
    09.10.2015 13:59
    Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 9

    By Azad Hasanli - Trend:

    The Azerbaijan Micro-Finance Association (AMFA) offers the Central Bank of Azerbaijan (CBA) to start direct lending to non-bank credit organizations (NBCOs), chairman of the AMFA, a board member of Aqrarkredit NBCO Suleyman Kalashov told reporters Oct. 9.

    "Under the law, NBCO cannot directly receive loans of the central bank, and they mainly attract funds of banks," he said. "However, the cost of credit is high. In addition, non-banking credit organizations cannot attract deposits from the public, that is, the sources of their funding are limited."

    Kalashov went on to add that the CBA recommended banks that their actual annual interest rate on consumer loans not exceed 29 percent, and micro-credits - 25 percent.

    "It is difficult to reduce rates on micro-credits," he said, stressing that in this regard, the NBCO should get cheaper loans. "Many people take loans, for example, worth 500 manats, but the maintenance costs for micro-credits are very large, especially considering the cost to evaluate the pledge and so on. As a result, this leads to the fact that the NBCO work to their detriment."

    The official exchange rate on October 9 is 1.0478 AZN / USD.

    Edited by CN

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  • Donв't impress me with '˜something differentв', just take me to dinner
    09.10.2015 13:48
    The other day, a seemingly nice and normal boy asked me on a date. After I accepted, he said,В ''What do you want to do?''

    ''I want to go get some prime rib,'' I answered honestly.

    ''You do know that there are things to do other than dinner, right?''

    And this is when I lost my sh*t.

    I feel like a switch has flipped in our culture. Over the past decade or two, guys have been presented withВ with all sorts of magazine articles and books and TV shows that try to convince them they should treat a girl to something ''better'' than dinner and drinks.

    Flip on the TV, and youв'll find a young, cool girl complaining about the ''boring''В dinner date she had. Open your favorite magazine to find a list of date options that are so much BETTER than dinner.

    In order to show trueВ interest, people feel like they have to suggest absurd things '" like a run or a hike or even a joint SoulCycle class.

    Like, um, Iв'm sorry, but are you f*cking kidding me!?

    I hate exercising byВ myself. So why in Godв's name would I want to exercise with you '" a virtual stranger who I may or may not be porking at some point in the near future (Iв'm thinking ''NOT'' after you suggested these bullsh*t ideas).

    And while weв're at it, letв's just go ahead and cross off pottery class, bungee jumping or any other weird sh*t you may have in mind for the two of us.

    Itв's as ifВ suddenly doing everything BUT going out for a nice, simple dinner and drinks has become the goal. And Iв'm left feeling like a boring loser for actually liking a good old-fashioned dinner date.

    I wanted to scream in that guyв's face, ''Yes. I understand that there are things to do other than dinner, you condescending prick. But did it ever occur to you that maybe '" just maybe '" I actually LIKE getting dinner?! Maybe getting a nice hunk of prime rib with a Moscow Mule (or seven) is exactly what I want. STOP SHAMING ME FOR IT.''

    Call me old-fashioned. Call me boring. Call me a c*nt, for all I care. I just really enjoy eating dinner, and the only thing I possibly enjoy more than that is drinking. So yes, going for dinner and drinks ISВ my ideal date.

    Iв'm sorry that dinner and drinks are too ''popular'' or ''mainstream'' for you, but did it ever occur to you that maybe there is a REASON for this?

    I want to make sure we have a real connection.I want to know we can sit across the table from each other for an extended period of time with no choice but to communicate (without me wanting to punch you in the face). And dinner is the best arena for this experiment.

    When I was brainstorming this article with my coworkers this morning, someone asked, ''But how do we make dinner more interesting?''

    Thatв's the whole point here. In order to make dinner interesting, your only option is to actuallyВ beВ interesting and, more importantly, interested in your partner. There are no art projects or exercise routines set to blaring dubstep music to distract you from getting to know each other.

    I want access to alcohol.Iв'll be honest here: If you are boring me to death, I am going to want a drink.

    What the f*ck would I do if you were boring me on our hike? Jump? I donв't want to LITERALLY be bored to death here.

    Besides that, first dates are awkward. I donв't think having a few drinks to loosen us both up is such a bad thing at all.

    I want to get a feel for who you really are.You get to know a lot about a personв's character at dinner.

    First and foremost, the uninterrupted conversation is the best gateway into his personality. But even beyond that, there are so many opportunities duringВ the dinner experience that tell me what sort of a guy you are.

    What did you order? How do you treat the waitstaff? How do you react when I make an attempt to pay? Do you hold doors open? How about my chair '" will you pull it out?

    By the same token, I want you to get a feel for whoВ IВ really am, too.

    When I eat, itв's not pretty. I do not order pretty things, and I do not use pretty table manners. I willВ absolutelyВ be ordering a giant hunk of meat and devouring itВ while I try to make conversation with a full mouth.

    A guy deserves to know what heв's getting himself into (literally'¦ hah) before he starts taking me to meet Mom and Dad.

    I want to make sure we have common interests.The bottom line is this: I love food, and I love drinking. They are two things that I am really, truly passionate about. If you canв't go to a delicious restaurant and genuinely enjoy it with every fiber of your being, we probably donв't have much of a future between us.

    My other interests include shopping, mercilessly gossiping about virtual celebrities with my friends and having Mafia movie marathons (we start with New York/Las Vegas Italian and move on to Boston Irish) in my footie pajamas.

    I have a feeling you have no interest in doing any of those things with me, so how about you just indulge me in my most socially acceptable interest?

    /By Elite Daily/
  • Foreign companies seek to enter Iranian market
    09.10.2015 13:30
    /By AzerNews/

    By Sara Rajabova

    Foreign companies have lined up to take advantage of cooperation with Iran after the removal of international sanctions imposed on the country over its nuclear energy program.

    This comes following the normalization of relations between Iran and the West after the July nuclear deal contributed to the development of cooperation between the Islamic Republic and European countries.

    Global energy giant Shell has voiced interest in Iranв's oil and gas projects, but says it is still too early to speak of any specific plans.

    Shell CEO Ben van Beurden said at the Oil amp; Money conference in London that Iran is an interesting country in terms of geological structure, and there are interesting prospects for investments in the countryв's energy projects, Press TV reported.

    Van Beurden also emphasized that his companyв's plans in Iran will depend on how the Iranian market develops in the short-term, the investments required and the general situation in the country.

    He further confirmed that Shell is engaged in negotiations in Iran but emphasized that the talks are mainly focused on settling of the companyв's debts to the National Iranian Oil Company.

    Iranв's media earlier reported that a delegation from Shell had recently arrived in Iran for talks with the countryв's oil officials.

    Shell has not been involved in any major oil and gas project in Iran over the past decade, mostly as a result of the U.S.-engineered sanctions that barred international corporations from the countryв's energy projects.

    Nevertheless, Shell was involved in the development of the Persian Gulf oil fields Soroush and Norouz and was expected to develop Persian LNG in South Pars, a project that was eventually scrapped mainly because of the sanctions.

    While many companies are in talks to resume their activities in the Islamic Republic, some are preparing to sign deals with Iran.

    German automaker Mercedes-Benz reported that it would soon sign a major deal with Iran over the production of medium-duty diesel engines.

    Gholam-Reza Razzazi, the managing director of Iranian Diesel Engine Manufacturing, told reporters that the cooperation with Mercedes-Benz will specifically involve the production of Arna mini-trucks as well as Arian mini-buses, both of which are upcoming products from IDEM.

    Razzazi added that both vehicles would be equipped with the Mercedes-Benz 900 engine.

    He said IDEM '"a subsidiary of the countryв's key auto brand Iran Khodro '" and Mercedes-Benz will also cooperate over the production of the German manufacturerв's flagship truck brand named Actros.

    Razzazi said Iran had requested Mercedes-Benz to provide an efficient customer support system as a precondition for cooperating with IDEM, adding that the related deals would be signed within weeks.

    A number of officials and company representatives from Western countries have recently visited Tehran to discuss boosting ties in the aftermath of sanctions removal.

    Earlier in July, world powers Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United States, reached a nuclear deal with Iran, aiming to curb Tehran's nuclear drive in exchange for a gradual lifting of sanctions imposed on its economy since 2006.

    With sanctions gone starting from 2016, foreign investment is due to return to Iran, a country rich with oil and gas resources.
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