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Ways to Help Underachieving Boys Succeed in School
11.02.2013 09:04
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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.

CLAUDIA BUCHMANN

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.

WALT LIDMAN

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

The writer is a retired public-school teacher.
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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428703.jpg
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  • Armenian villages on Azerbaijani border deserted
    28.08.2014 16:15
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132640.jpg
    "At least two schools will be closed in the beginning of this school year."

    There will be no first-grader in Berkaber village of Tavush region of Armenia.

    Oxu.Az reports citing tert.am that the statement came from the village elder Arthur Madatyan.

    At least two schools will be closed in Shirak region in the beginning of the year due to lack of students.
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  • President Ilham Aliyev attended the opening a Youth Center in Beylagan
    28.08.2014 16:03
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    http://www.topnews.az/images/logo.png
    President of theRepublicofAzerbaijan Ilham Aliyevhas attended the opening of aYouthCenterin Beylagan.

    The head of state cut the ribbon symbolizing the official opening of the building.

    It was said that the construction of the center started in May 2013. High quality construction work was carried out at the two-storey building to create all conditions for youth. Photos reflecting national leader Heydar Aliyev`s visits to Beylagan were installed in the lobby of the center. There is also a photo stand highlighting President Ilham Aliyev`s visits and meetings with youth in the district.

    The center houses a youth cafe, a shooting gallery, a karaoke club, and 3D cinemas. A 120-seat hall and a 14-seat auditorium are well suited for conferences and meetings. The center also has an electronic library, a reading room, a languages room, an Internet cafe, gymnastics and dance rooms.

    President Ilham Aliyev had a meeting with youth and representatives of local public at the center.

    Teacher Ayten Mirzayeva and school principal Aziz Akbarov thanked the head of state for his attention to youth.

    A photo was taken at the close of the ceremony.
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  • Ilham Aliyev visiting Beylagan
    28.08.2014 16:01
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132639.jpg
    Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev attended the opening of the Center for Youth in Beylagan.

    Oxu.Az reports with reference to APA that the Head of State cut the ribbon symbolizing the opening of the Centre.

    President Ilham Aliyev was informed that the construction of the building of the Center began in May 2013. The center will have a youth cafe, shooting area, karaoke, cinema 3D. The meeting room for 120 people and the auditorium with 14 seats have all the conditions for the young people at different events and meetings.

    The President met with the youth and public representatives at the center.

    During his visit to Beylagan district, the president also participated in the opening of the chess school. He was informed that the construction of Chess School building began in May 2013 and was completed in February 2014.

    In addition, the President attended the opening of a kindergarten in Beylagan built on the initiative of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation. Construction of the kindergarten for 80 seats began in January and ended in July 2014.

    President Ilham Aliyev laid a wreath at the monument to national leader Heydar Aliyev in Beylagan.
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  • President Ilham Aliyev visited a statue to national leader Heydar Aliyev in Beylagan
    28.08.2014 15:41
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    President of theRepublicofAzerbaijan Ilham Aliyevhas arrived in Beylagan District on a visit.

    The head of state laid flowers at a statue of national leader Heydar Aliyev in theHeydarAliyevPark.

    Head of Beylagan District Executive Authority Vagif Abdullayev informed President Ilham Aliyev about the landscaping and construction work carried out around the statue. It was said that all conditions were created for local residents and guests in the revampedHeydarAliyevPark.
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  • Rules for state financing of NGO projects in cultural sector established
    28.08.2014 15:40
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132638.jpg
    Rules for state financing of NGO projects in cultural sector were established by Order 292 of the Azerbaijanв's Cabinet of Ministers from August 26.

    In accordance with the rules, the state budget funds will be allocated to non-governmental organizations for the mentioned purposes on the basis of grant agreement concluded with the Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

    To distribute grants every year on January 31 at the latest the Ministry will hold a competition for NGO projects subject to financing. The information about participants of the competition will be published at the Ministry's web site. Projects meeting conditions of the competition will be submitted to the Cabinet of Ministers no later than March 1. The results of the competition will be summarized by the Commission consisting of 9 members including 6 representatives from NGO and 6 representatives from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

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  • President Ilham Aliyev attended the opening of the Bulagli-Bahramtapa section of the Hajigabul-Bahramtapa highway
    28.08.2014 15:36
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    http://www.topnews.az/images/logo.png
    President of theRepublicofAzerbaijan Ilham Aliyevhas attended the opening of the Bulagli-Bahramtapa part of the Hajigabul-Bahramtapa highway.

    The head of state cut the ribbon symbolizing the official opening of the facility.

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  • SOCAR to open more filling stations in Romania
    28.08.2014 15:12
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    http://azertag.az/sites/default/files/1409147561.jpg
    Azerbaijan's State Oil Company (SOCAR) plans to increase the number of its filling stations in Romania, Head of SOCAR's Romanian office Hamza Karimov said in his interview with "Energynomics.ro".

    "Romania is among the top ten countries in terms of global energy security, expectations for investment growth and positive economic results in 2013. It played a decisive role in the expansion of SOCAR activity on the local market," Karimov stressed.

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    28.08.2014 15:07
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    http://www.topnews.az/images/logo.png
    President of theRepublicofAzerbaijan Ilham Aliyevhas attended the opening of a bridge over theKurRiveron the Hajigabul-Bahramtapa highway in the city ofShirvan.

    The head of state cut the ribbon symbolizing the official opening of the facility.

    Transport Minister Ziya Mammadov toldPresident Ilham Aliyev that the bridge is317 metresin length and nearly15 metresin width. The outdated metal bridge was creating serious traffic problems. Although it had been repaired several times, the replacement of the bridge with a new one was urgently needed. The construction of the state-of-the-art facility started in 2011 and it is now ready for operation.

    It was said that construction and installation work was carried out on the old bridge to ensure continuous and safe traffic flow.
    8
  • Platini will not stand against Blatter for Fifa presidency
    28.08.2014 15:01
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428680.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428680.jpg
    Michel Platini has announced he will not stand against Sepp Blatter for the Fifa presidency and will instead run for re-election as UEFA president.

    The 59-year-old Frenchman told UEFA delegates in Monaco that he had decided against standing for the Fifa post as he wants to continue his work as head of European footballв's ruling body.

    Platini said after the meeting: ''This is the decision I have made. It is about what I want to do with Uefa.''

    The European Fifa executive committee member Michel Dв'Hooghe welcomed Platiniв's decision not to enter a contest against Blatter. He said: ''It was a very positive message '" he said he would like to continue as Uefa president and I am pleased that it means that this time there will be no battle between Fifa and Uefa.''

    Platiniв's decision comes as little surprise '" standing against Blatter would have been an uphill struggle and would have meant the Frenchman not running for the Uefa presidency in March. There is, however, certain to be continuing pressure from Europe for Fifa to carry out more reforms and Platini remains unhappy Blatter, who was once his mentor, has reneged on his public promise not to stand for another term.

    Five of Fifaв's six continental bodies have already announced their support for Blatter, only Europe has publicly opposed him.
    4
  • Construction of 'Anaerobic' Non-Nuclear Subs to Begin in 2017 - Russian Navy
    28.08.2014 15:00
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132635.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132635.jpg
    Russia will begin constructing a new generation of nonatomic submarines equipped with ''anaerobic systems,'' Navy Commander Adm. Viktor Chirkov said Thursday.

    "Of course, the construction of diesel-electric submarines will continue. Today, we are talking about non-atomic submarines. Starting from 2017, [the construction of] a new series [of submarines] with an anaerobic system will begin and the Admiralteisky Wharf will take on the construction," Chirkov said, RIA Novosti reports.

    The main advantage of the air-independent energy system is an increase in the ship's speed and the ability for it to remain submerged when recharging its batteries as opposed to surfacing to recharge them.

    Meanwhile, the construction of diesel-electric submarines in Russia is in progress. The third in the series of six Varshavyanka-class submarines, built for the Crimea-based Black Sea Fleet, is expected to be launched Thursday in St. Petersburg.

    The construction of all six submarines is to be completed by 2016. They are almost undetectable when submerged and feature advanced stealth technology, extended combat range and the ability to strike land, surface and underwater targets. The submarines are mainly intended for anti-ship and anti-submarine missions in relatively shallow waters.
    2
  • Turkish envoy about invitation to Armenia to attend presidential inauguration
    28.08.2014 14:06
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132632.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132632.jpg
    urkish Ambassador to Azerbaijan Ismail Alper Coskun has commented on Armeniaв's being invited to Turkish President-elect Recep Tayyip Erdogan's inauguration ceremony, APA reports.

    Coskun told journalists that it is useful not only for Turkey's friends, but also for everyone to see the change in nation-state integration in Turkey.

    He said everyone would witness the importance of friendship with Turkey in the inauguration ceremony: "No one will benefit from having unnecessary confrontation with Turkey by distorting the history. Facing the reality and winning the friendship of Turkey will be useful to everyone."

    Saying that there was some speculative news about invitation of Armenia to the inauguration ceremony, the Ambassador noted that even the president was called on: "As an ambassador of Turkey I would like to ask that in these cases please turn back the history of Turkey before asking questions. Today's ceremony is the inauguration ceremony of Recep Tayyip Erdogan. This is the person who visited Baku and clearly stated in the Parliament that no steps can be taken in Turkey against Azerbaijan. Whenever Erdogan states an opinion, the Azerbaijani people also accept that it reflects the truth. I know that. Therefore, do not be concerned that any problem could arise here. But there can be thoose who ask themselves "Could there be any problem between Turkey and Azerbaijan?".

    Coskun stated that Azerbaijan and Turkey will continue to cooperate for the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, even further development of the two countries, and third countries to benefit from this development: "Azerbaijani lands have been under occupation for a long period. That's unacceptable. We'll continue to try to convey the historical reality to the world and act together against those who claim the opposite. And each time, without feeling shy or abstaining, we'll reiterate the value of our friendship, but that doesn't mean any change in our position. That is why I'm asking everyone in Azerbaijan not to be worried".
    14
  • U.S. Charge d'Affaires visits Gabala
    28.08.2014 13:57
    http://azertag.az/sites/default/files/1409142123.jpg
    http://azertag.az/sites/default/files/1409142123.jpg
    Charge d'Affaires at the U.S. Embassy to Azerbaijan Dereck Hogan has visited the country`s Gabala district.

    He met head of the district`s Executive Authorities Sabuhi Abdullayev, who praised relations between Azerbaijan and the United States.

    He highlighted economic situation and socio-cultural life in the district. Mr. Abdullayev said Gabala had become the center of high-profile international events, adding "this plays an immense role in speeding up the development of the district".

    He said tourism was the key priority area in Gabala, and provided an insight into the district`s tourism infrastructure.

    Mr. Hogan hailed the development of tourism in Gabala.
    7
  • Red Bull Thre3Style's final takes place in Baku
    28.08.2014 13:50
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic136497.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic136497.jpg
    By AzerNews

    The world final of the prestigious Red Bull Thre3Style World DJ Championship will take place in Baku from September 1 to 6.

    The six-day event will bring together the best DJs from 20 countries, as well as national winners of the championship's qualifying stages, a jury consisting of international DJ stars, and special guests.

    Baku has hosted three national finals since 2012. DJ Twist was the absolute winner of each national final.

    He will represent Azerbaijan at the championship in September.

    Previous editions of the Red Bull Thre3Style World DJ Championship were held in Vancouver (2011), Chicago (2012), Toronto (2013).

    The jury of the championship will be presented by well-known international DJs such as DJ Jazzy Jeff, Shortkut and Z Trip from the U.S., Canadian Skratch Bastid, and Krafty Kuts from Great Britain. Famous DJs Qbert, D Styles, Headspin, Four Color Zack, Karve, Shintaro will participate in the event.

    Red Bull Thre3Style pits the world's best DJs in a competition that values technical skill as much as the ability to thrill a dance floor.

    Competitors are judged on the dual platforms of technical ability and crowd reaction, and are given just 15 minutes each to prove that they're the best in the room. Judges work to a strict the criteria that also marks DJs on their originality in song choices, confidence performing and mixing prowess.

    Thre3Style's is rooted in Canada, but the idea behind the competition is global: get people dancing, keep the party vibes coming and up your game until you're the DJ that brings the perfect set.
    6
  • Azerbaijan not to allow third countries to harm its relations with neighbors
    28.08.2014 13:46
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    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic136496.jpg
    Azerbaijan will not allow third countries to harm its relations with neighbors, spokesman for the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry Elman Abdullayev said at a briefing Aug. 28.

    He was commenting on some media outlets' information about an Israeli drone downed over Iran's territory, which supposedly was launched from the territory of Azerbaijan.

    "While creating good relations with neighboring countries, Baku follows these principles," he said.

    Azerbaijani Defense Ministry dismisses some media reports that the Israeli-made Hermes-450 drone downed in Iran was allegedly launched from Azerbaijan's territory, head of the ministry's press service, Colonel Vagif Dargahli told Trend Aug. 27.

    He said such provocative information is aimed at spoiling Azerbaijan's relations with its neighbors.

    Iranian servicemen said on Aug. 23 that the Israeli spy drone "Hermes-450" was downed in the airspace of the country. They added that the drone was launched to monitor the uranium enrichment plant in Natanz.

    The Israeli side stressed that despite this is Israeli drone, the Armed Forces of Azerbaijan, Georgia and Kazakhstan are armed with it. Some foreign media outlets reported that this drone was launched from the territory of Azerbaijan.

    4
  • Delegation headed by Azerbaijanв's Defence Minister visits Romania
    28.08.2014 13:17
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    http://azertag.az/sites/default/files/1409159583.jpg
    A delegation headed by the Minister of Defence of Azerbaijan Zakir Hasanov is visiting Romania invited by the country`s Defence Minister Mircea Dusa.

    The delegation was welcomed by the Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Ministry of Defence of Romania, General Dumitru Scarlat.

    The delegation paid tribute to national leader Heydar Aliyev by putting a wreath and flowers at his bust in the Heydar Aliyev Avenue in Bucharest.

    As part of the visit, the delegation met Romanian Minister of Defence Mircea Dusa and the Chairman of the Chamber of Deputies Valeriu Zgonea. The sides discussed the main priorities and prospects of military cooperation between the two countries. The sides reached agreements in military-technical and military-educational spheres, as well as in the fields of mountain exercises and training exchange. They also discussed the questions of regional security and exchanged views on latest developments in Eastern Europe and South Caucasus. The sides emphasized mutual support for territorial integrity of both countries.

    The delegation is expected to meet Romanian Minister of Economy Constantin NiЕЈДѓ.

    The visit of the Azerbaijani delegation is widely covered by the Romanian mass media.
    12
  • Digital payments could help billions of people without access to banks
    28.08.2014 13:10
    http://sia.az/images/fotoyoxdur.gif
    http://sia.az/images/fotoyoxdur.gif
    Expanding the use of digital payments such as mobile money and electronic transfers in developing countries could spur economic growth and ease income inequality, while advancing towards the G20в's goal to bring financial services to an estimated 2.5 billion adults who are excluded from the formal banking sector.

    Building on a telecoms revolution that has connected many of the worldв's poor people to mobile banking services, a report published on Thursday argues that governments in the G20 should target digital payments as a way to help people access basic banking facilities, which it says will encourage saving while reducing theft and corruption.

    The report '" The Opportunities of Digitising Payments '" by the World Bankв's development research group, the Better Than Cash Alliance and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, says: ''Rapid development and extension of digital platforms and digital payments can provide the speed, security, transparency and cost efficiency needed to increase financial inclusion at the scale required to achieve G20 goals.''

    Digital payment services such as Kenyaв's M-Pesa mobile money, prepaid debit cards for Syrian refugees in Turkey, and electronic bank transfers are helping people save money securely in formal banks, said Ruth Goodwin-Groen, managing director of the Better Than Cash Alliance.

    ''When weв're looking at the large emerging economies in the G20 '" the Indonesias, the Brazils, the Mexicos '" there are huge opportunities in those economies to transition their cash payments to electronic payments,'' she said. ''But what works in each context is what is appropriate '" it depends on the country youв're looking at.''

    Some are concerned that digital payments are vulnerable to electronic theft and can be intercepted. Last year, Barclays attempted to close the accounts of remittance company Dahabshiil, whixh operates in Somalia, for fear that funds sent electronically could be intercepted by Islamist group al-Shabaab.
    3
  • `World community must take concrete steps to solve conflicts`
    28.08.2014 13:02
    http://azertag.az/sites/default/files/1409139532.JPG
    http://azertag.az/sites/default/files/1409139532.JPG
    The world community must take concrete steps to solve conflicts, said deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan, Chairman of the State Committee for Refugee and IDP affairs Ali Hasanov as he met Iraq`s ambassador to Azerbaijan Hayder Shiya Ghubeshi Al-Barrak.

    The meeting discussed ongoing developments in Iraq and emergence of many refugees and IDPs as a result of these processes. Deputy Prime Minister Hasanov expressed the Azerbaijani government`s concern over the developments in Iraq. Hasanov underlined that millions of innocent people suffer as a result of these conflicts, which give rise to the increase in number of refugees. He touched upon the Iraq events, Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the problem of refugees and IDPS caused by them. According to him, the international organizations make ineffective statements and adopt fruitless resolutions instead of taking concrete steps to solve the conflicts. "They gradually lose trust," he added.

    Hasanov said economic interests of political forces are behind UN Security Council`s inability to bring to fruition its four resolutions demanding withdrawal of Armenian troops from the occupied Azerbaijani territories, OSCE Minsk Group`s failing to find a solution to the conflict, presence of 1.2 million refugees and IDPs.

    The Iraqi ambassador said: "Thousands of Iraqis fled their homes in the wake of ongoing violence in the country. According to High Commission for Refugees, the number of refugees in Iraq hit 1.4 million, placing the country the second around the world."

    The ambassador called Iraq the door to the Arab world and Azerbaijan the door to the South Caucasus.
    13
  • Protests over new French education minister
    28.08.2014 13:01
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428623.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428623.jpg
    French rightwing groups who mobilised against same-sex marriage have threatened further social unrest to protest against the promotion of Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, an outspoken proponent of gender equality, to the post of education minister in the new government unveiled on Tuesday.

    "I'm horrified," said Ludovine de la RochГЁre, the leader of the Manif Pour Tous, which staged mass demonstrations as the government struggled to push through the landmark legislation adopted in May 2013. She described the appointment of Vallaud-Belkacem, who was closely associated with the law, as a "provocation" and urged opponents of the minister to join a protest on 5 October.

    Vallaud-Belkacem, who was minister for women's rights, youth and sport before becoming the first woman to take charge of the education portfolio, became a hate figure for the right when she backed an experimental reform introduced into 275 primary schools last year aimed at overcoming gender stereotyping. The minister was dubbed "Khmer Rose" by the rightwing Le Figaro, and was accused of importing the controversial gender theory from the US.

    Vallaud-Belkacem, 36, told FranceInfo radio that "pointless polemics" would have no place in her ministry and that she was "committed to the equality of boys and girls more than anything else."

    Meanwhile the left wing of the Socialist party was equally vocal about the government's fiercely pro-market course symbolised by the appointment of a former Rothschild's banker, Emmanuel Macron, as economy minister. Three leftwing rebels, including economy minister Arnaud Montebourg, were purged from the cabinet on Tuesday by the prime minister, Manuel Valls.
    5
  • British Ambassador to visit Gabala and Sheki
    28.08.2014 12:16
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132630.jpg
    British Ambassador to Azerbaijan Irfan Siddiq will today visit Gabala in order to familiarize with the regions, the Embassy told APA.

    The Ambassador will meet with the chief executive of Gabala as well as the internally displaced persons and representatives of national minorities. Then the diplomat will leave for Sheki.

    Ambassador Irfan Siddiq has previously visited Nakhchivan and Ganja cities.
    18
  • Special lifts and lanes built for disabled
    28.08.2014 12:02
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132629.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132629.jpg
    The installation of lifts on deeper stations is impossible.

    The elevators and special lanes for persons with disabilities are built in Baku metro, in particular, the work continues on the installation of elevators at existing stations "Bus terminal" and "Memar Ajami-2."

    "Special lifts for the disabled installed during the construction of the Baku Metro stations, and the works on creation of special lanes for them are carried out on existing stations of shallow bedding."

    Oxu.Az reports referring to "Echo" newspaper that the statement came from the Head of Public Relations of "Baku Metro" JSC Nasimi Pashayev.

    According to him, at the present time, some passengers with disabilities can not use the subway. Baku Metro does not have the appropriate infrastructure, in particular, there are no facilities for the use of wheelchairs. However the work at the instruction of management of the metro is underway, he said.

    According to N.Pashaev, the installation of lifts on deep bedding stations is impossible, because there is no space for it. Also, the creation of special lanes for the movement of people with disabilities is not possible due to presence of escalators. At the same shallow bedding stations on which people do not use escalator for exit allow the construction of special lanes.
    9
  • La Tomatina festival PHOTO
    28.08.2014 11:57
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428600.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428600.jpg
    The world-famous festival has been held in the Valencian town of BuГ±ol on the last Wednesday of August since 1945. The event sees tens of thousands of tourists join the townв's 9,000 inhabitants to throw tonnes of tomatoes at one another

    An estimated 20,000 people descended on the town of BuГ±ol in the east of Spain on Wednesday for the annual La Tomatina tomato fight '" often billed as the worldв's largest food fight '" to hurl tomatoes for an hour in a storm of pulp and crimson.

    The tradition began in the mid-1940s, though its origins are unclear. The festivalв's garish new official website attributes it to a foodfight that broke out in the town in 1945 during the 'parade of giant headsв' and had to be broken up by the police.

    The food fight was banned in the early 1950s until 1957 when the locals held a funeral for a giant tomato in protest, parading it around town in a coffin, and successfully had the ban repealed.

    The town hall introduced a ticketing system in 2013, limiting the eventв's attendance to 20,000 people.

    Private tour companies sell tickets and accommodation in the nearby city of Valencia. Those willing to spend more can buy a coveted space on the back of the trucks that carry the tomatoes to the town, for an additional fee of €750.

    Over 100 tonnes of tomatoes are brought to the town and thrown during the hour-long fight, at an estimated total cost of €140,000, or €2,300 a minute.

    The tomato fight, which takes place every year on the last Wednesday of August, is the culmination of a week-long celebration made up of street parties, fireworks and food fairs. The night before the fight, participants compete in a paella cooking contest.

    There are two signals for the food fight to begin: the firing of the water cannon and the first successful attempt to climb the Palo JabГіn, a greasy pole with a piece of ham on top, and knock the ham off its perch.

    One tour website explains: 'Technically the festival does not begin until one brave soul has climbed to the top of a two-story high, greased-up wooden pole and reached the coveted ham at the top. In practice this process takes a long time and the festival starts despite no one reaching the meaty prize.

    In recent years the festival has become so popular that organisers have had to turn tens of thousands of people away. In 2012, an estimated 40,000 revellers '" more than four times the townв's population '" made the journey to BuГ±ol to take part.

    The fight begins at 11am with the firing of water cannon, and ends an hour later when they are fired again. According to the rules, participants must stop throwing tomatoes as soon as they hear the second round of cannon fire.

    The tomato festival has become a global phenomenon, with copycat events staged at one time or another in Colombia, China, the US and Chile. The videogame Tekken 6 includes a battle arena based on the Tomatina, in which characters fight while surrounded by tomato-hurling revellers.
    7
  • ICRC representatives to meet Azerbaijani hostages in Armenia
    28.08.2014 11:51
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132628.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132628.jpg
    Representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) will visit Dilgam Asgarov and Shahbaz Guliyev, the two Azerbaijanis taken hostage by the Armenian Armed Forces.

    Ilaha Huseynova, head of the public relations department of the ICRC Baku Office, told APA the organization is planning to meet with the hostages in accordance with its mandate.

    Ilaha Huseynova gave no information about the date of the meeting, adding that it will, according to rules, be revealed only after the meeting is over: We'll give detailed information after the meeting. Hostages can even write a letter to their families during the meeting.
    12
  • Aremnian army keeps ceasefire agression
    28.08.2014 11:36
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic136492.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic136492.jpg
    Over the past 24 hours Armenians opened fire at the Azerbaijani armed forces from the positions at the nameless heights and near the villages of Sarijali, Marzili of the Aghdam region, Tapqaraqoyunlu of the Goranboy region, Mehdili of Jabrayil region and Qarakhanbayli of the Fizuli region, Azerbaijan's Defense Ministry said Aug. 28.

    The opposing side was silenced with return fire.

    The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan.

    As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.

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

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

    6
  • Consulate General of Azerbaijan blames California Senate for political corruption
    28.08.2014 11:31
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    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic136493.jpg
    The resolution on Nagorno-Karabakh passed by the California Senate is a shining example of political corruption, the Consulate General of Azerbaijan in Los Angeles said in connection with the resolution on Nagorno-Karabakh passed by the California Senate on Thursday.

    "The anti-Azerbaijani resolution AJR 32 on Nagorno-Karabakh has been on the agenda of the California State Senate for some time," according to the statement. "From the very beginning, a number of serious measures were undertaken by the Consulate General of Azerbaijan in Los Angeles to counter the resolution. These measures included, inter alia, sending letters of protest to all senators, holding numerous meetings with them, thus explaining the biasedness and flawedness of the AJR 32, its contradiction to America's stated foreign policy and national interests, as well as the fact that this racist resolution justified ethnic cleansing and illegal occupation of Azerbaijani lands by Armenia."

    Moreover, the Azerbaijani community of California also got mobilized and through various means harshly protested against the resolution. As a result, despite inordinate amount of effort by the Armenian lobby in California, where around 1 million Armenians reside, despite all the efforts by the two Armenian members of the California Legislature, as well as in spite of all the pressure by this ethnic lobby on senators using threats, blackmail and other means, 17 out of 40 senators refused to vote for the resolution Aug. 27, according to the statement.

    At the same time, the senators who receive massive financial contributions for their election campaigns and therefore hugely depend on the Armenian lobby, voted for AJR 32, disregarding all the solid facts presented to them, according to the statement. This is a pure political corruption. It has no other name. It is also a strong indicator of a serious flaw in America's political system that needs an urgent fixing.

    It should also be stressed that this resolution is not the first resolution adopted by the California Legislature regarding Nagorno-Karabakh, according to the statement. In 1993, 1997 and 1999, three similar resolutions had been adopted by the Legislature at the behest of the Armenian lobby. However neither those resolutions, nor AJR 32 have any legal or political significance. The entire international community, including the United States and United Nations, recognize Nagorno-Karabakh as part of Azerbaijan. Therefore such meaningless pieces of paper are unable to change this position.

    The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan.

    As a result of the ensuing war, in 1992 Armenian armed forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.

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

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

    3
  • New bill on rights of disabled people discussed with UNICEF
    28.08.2014 11:30
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132627.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132627.jpg
    The Ministry of Labor Social Protection of Azerbaijan has conducted today discussion with the UNICEF about a new draft law on the rights of persons with disabilities.

    The Ministry informs that the discussion was chaired by Deputy Labor Minister Natig Mammadov, Fineko/abc.az reports.

    "The UN committees, where the bill was presented for examination, gave a positive opinion on it by giving not large recomendations. In this regard, the Ministry conducts further consultation with UNICEF on issues such as the rehabilitation of children with physical and social opportunities," Mammadov emphasized.

    In turn, an employee of Baku-based UNICEF resident office, Ramiz Behbudov, pointed out that the Fund is ready for the constant support of the country on these issues.
    5
  • Booking British Airways tickets becomes available for azerbaijanis
    28.08.2014 11:21
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    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic136490.jpg
    British Airways announces the possibility to book a ticket for a flight from Azerbaijan to London, Europe or North America for up to 72 hours for just 5 pounds, or about 7 AZN on the website ba.com.

    The company will give customers time to make sure they are satisfied with the choice of flight before they pay for it.

    "If you have chosen to purchase a ticket within 72 hours, the amount of booking is returned to your account, and you can make a purchase," the statement said.

    Booking for small distance flights from Heathrow is worth a total of 5 pounds, while passengers who wish to keep their seats on a long distance flights will pay 10 pounds or about 13 AZN.

    "There is nothing more frustrating than to see the best price flight and not to be able to buy it right away due to the need to obtain permission at work or to check if this date is consistent with the plans of your family or friends. And after all it turns out that the place is occupied or the price has changed," said the commercial director of British Airways Drew Crowley.

    "Now the passengers can book their seats after they saw the prices and pay later with a term of up to three days. Customers feedback confirms our belief that this opportunity will be popular and will give them time to buy a ticket they want, as well as ensure confidence in the choice of the best offer," said Crowley.

    Only the name of a passenger is enough for booking of tickets. The names of all who fly can be added within 72 hours. Reservations can be carried out at least 21 days prior to departure.

    New reservation feature is a joint project between the airlines of British Airways and Iberia, owned by IAG. Reservation applies to all the flights undertaken by BA, including joint flights with Iberia, Iberia Express and Air Nostrum, including any combination of BA and Iberia flights as long as they are in a single ticket.

    This feature is the latest at the moment in a series of initiatives aimed at facilitating of the trip.

    British Airways offers six flights weekly from Azerbaijan to London Heathrow Airport with convenient connections to long-haul destinations for those traveling beyond London.

    The cost of booking for Europe and the United Kingdom on small distance flights is five euro and five pounds and 10 pounds, $10 and 10 euros respectively for flights over long distances.

    For all other currencies, reservation fee is converted and pound sterling is taken as the base of currency conversion.

    Flights to Denmark, Sweden, and Norway can not be reserved at the moment, but they will be added to this list in the near future.

    British Airways carries out 10 flights a week from Baku to London during the summer season and switches to a daily schedule during the winter season. British Airways is the largest international airline route network that covers 179 destinations, nine of which are in the UK, 84 in Europe and 86 in all other directions.

    7
  • Iran says drone launched from a Soviet state located north of Iran
    28.08.2014 11:21
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132626.jpg
    A senior Iranian commander says Iran will respond in the occupied Palestinian lands to the recent intrusion of an Israeli drone to its air space.

    "Destroying the Israeli spy drone is not the end of measures [undertaken] by the Islamic Republic of Iran and [we] will respond to the enemy in the occupied territories," Deputy Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Brigadier General Masoud Jazayeri said on Wednesday, Press TV reports.

    Iran's airspace is under the full control of the Islamic Republic's armed forces, Jazayeri added, saying Iran is vigilantly monitoring any foreign movements around its skies.

    The commander also noted that the spy aircraft was launched from one of the former Soviet states located north of Iran.

    In a statement on Sunday, Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) said it had successfully intercepted and shot down an Israeli spy drone by a surface-to-air missile. The aircraft was on its way toward Natanz nuclear facility in Iran's central province of Isfahan.

    The sophisticated stealth drone, an Israeli-made Hermes type, can operate within a radius of 800 kilometers and is capable of flying 1,600 kilometers without refueling, according to the IRGC.

    IRGC's Second-in-Command Brigadier General Hossein Salami said on Tuesday that the Israeli aircraft had been immediately detected and tracked upon entering Iranian skies, but it was allowed to continue its path toward its destination so that the IRGC could collect intelligence on the drone's mission.

    Iran's nuclear facilities have been a regular target for espionage activities by US and Israeli secret services, which have at times used drones for this purpose. However, all efforts made to this end have been successfully thwarted by the Iranian military forces.
    5
  • Baku 2015 European Games presents colorful new brand look
    28.08.2014 11:16
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic136489.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic136489.jpg
    The Baku 2015 European Games has today unveiled a new look that proudly combines Azerbaijan's history, heritage and culture with European sport.

    Inspired by the natural beauty of Baku, the colourful and striking new images will be featured on venues, tickets, uniforms and all official merchandising of the inaugural European Games.

    Central to the new brand is the pomegranate tree, which symbolises unity in Azerbaijani folklore. Interwoven with the branches of the tree are historical symbols of the country's heritage and culture, along with eye-catching pictograms of the different sports and disciplines.

    "The new brand is a dynamic and fresh new look for Baku 2015 which symbolises our pride in ancient Azerbaijani heritage, the natural beauty of the country and a desire to create an innovative sports event that will be enjoyed by whole Europe," Simon Clegg, Chief Operating Officer of Baku 2015 European Games Operation Committee (BEGOC) said.

    "Over the coming weeks and months, the look will become synonymous with the European Games and provide an immediate visual link to all aspects of our identity here in Azerbaijan," he said.

    Incorporated in the eye-catching new designs are other symbols of Azerbaijani heritage including the colourful stained glass "shebeke", the ornamental detail of the "buta" and references to carpet design and weaving which play a significant part of the country's proud history.

    The tender to create the new look was won by the renowned SomeOne agency, who had previously worked on the sports brands for the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympic Games.

    "Having visited Baku during the immersive phase of the project, we were impressed at just how lush and beautiful the city was," Gary Holt, Co-founder and Executive Creative Director of SomeOne said.

    "This inspired the creation of a living property - the Baku 2015 pomegranate tree. Alive with athletes, Azerbaijani art and the pomegranates themselves, the tree has been designed to be adaptive, celebrating elite sport in the amazing setting of Baku," he noted.

    The images will also feature on everything from corporate stationery, medals and the dressing of the host city on billboards and banners in Baku as the countdown to the Games continues.

    "We are delighted with the beautiful and intricate designs and pictograms that SomeOne have created to bring the European Games to life," Commercial Director of Baku 2015, Charlie Wijeratna said.

    "They have designed a look which will be effective across all our anticipated uses, from medals to uniforms, and for branding of all shapes and sizes," he added.

    Baku 2015 is the first ever European Games, an exciting and innovative multi-sport event for the continent which will take place from June 12 until June 28, 2015.

    There will be a total of 19 sports at Baku 2015: 16 Olympic sports and three non-Olympic sports. More than 6,000 athletes from across Europe will be representing their nations over 17 days of competition.

    Nine of the sports will offer qualification opportunities for the Rio Summer Olympic Games in 2016. Those sports include Archery, Athletics, Cycling, Shooting, Swimming, Table Tennis, Taekwondo, Triathlon and Volleyball.

    Baku was awarded the Games by the European Olympic Committees (EOC) in December 2012. The Baku European Games Operation Committee (BEGOC) will organise and run the Games in co-operation with the EOC.

    13
  • Californian senate recognizes '˜NKRв'
    28.08.2014 11:16
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132625.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132625.jpg
    A resolution supporting Nagorno-Karabakh's independence was adopted as a result of a full California Senate vote on Thursday.

    The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Resolution (AJR 32), which encourages and supports the Republic of Nagorno-Karabakh's continuing efforts to develop as a free and independent nation, news.am reports.

    Рўhe California State Assembly adopted a resolution recognizing the independence of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic on May 8. AJR 32, introduced by Assemblymember Mike Gatto, was adopted by a vote of 70-1.
    3
  • The fastest dog on two legs PHOTO
    28.08.2014 11:05
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428577.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428577.jpg
    A talented dog has a new reason to wag his tail after setting two world records for walking on its hind legs and front paws.

    Jiff the Pomeranianfrom Los Angeles, California, practiseshis crowd-pleasing stunts every day. Now the pet has set a new record for the fastest 10 metres on hind legs (6.56 seconds) and the fastest five metres on front paws (7.76 seconds), according to Guinness World Records.

    The pooch prodigy is also able to shake hands, bow, skateboard and even stamp autographs.

    Jiff'sbipedal shenanigans have won him a legion of followers on social media.

    The four-year-old canine has even starred in a Katy Perry music video. After all those antics he must be dog-tired.
    5
  • Russia's Duma Speaker, Tatar, Chechen Leaders to Attend Erdogan's Inauguration
    28.08.2014 11:00
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132624.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132624.jpg
    Russia's Duma Speaker Sergei Naryshkin will attend the inauguration of Turkey's newly elected president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on Thursday.

    The Russian delegation will also include the leader of Tatarstan Rustam Minnikhanov and the Chechnya's President Ramzan Kadyrov, RIA Novosti reports.

    The ceremony is scheduled for 11:00 GMT at the house of parliament.

    Erdogan will become Turkey's 12th president and the first ever to have been elected via a direct vote and not appointed by the parliament.

    He won a landslide victory in August 10 presidential election, securing 52 percent of the vote. The president's main rival, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, garnered roughly 38 percent of the vote. About nine percent of voters supported third candidate Selahattin Demirtas.

    Voter turnout was 75 percent, with a total of 40.9 million people casting their votes in the election.

    In his victory speech, Erdogan pledged to start a "new era of social reconciliation by leaving old disputes in the Old Turkey."
    3
  • American publicist: ''The U.S. Congress should consider again the activity of Radio Liberty in Azerbaijan''
    28.08.2014 10:52
    http://apaholding.az/upload/images/photos/apa_logo.png
    http://apaholding.az/upload/images/photos/apa_logo.png
    Baku '" APA. ''The Congress should stop using taxpayer money to fund radio free europe's attacks on our allies'', American publicist Maayan Jaffe stated in his latest article, APA reports quoting Roll Call.

    "Radio Liberty together with Voice of America cost American tax payers $750 million annually. Yet instead of the "objective news, analysis and discussion of domestic and regional issues crucial to successful democratic and free-market transformations," it attacks allied nations that espouse these values. The Radio Liberty was termed "dysfunctional" by an inspector general. It called it hobbled by outright conflicts of interest and "a degree of hostility that renders its deliberative process ineffectual." Yet there is no record of Congress taking action; and the reporting shows Congress's attention is sorely needed", Jaffe noted.

    Speaking about the activity of the Radio Liberty in Azerbaijan Jaffe shared what he knew about Azerbaijan: "Tolerant society is a priority of Azerbaijan's policy. Through the Ministry of Education, Azerbaijan joins international conventions on education, and establishes fruitful cooperation with international organizations. It is one of the first nations to join the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, a major effort to bring transparency to global trade. The nation's sovereign fund, the State Oil Fund, is widely recognized as one of most well-managed in the world. Azerbaijan is a proven friend of the American people that offered unconditional assistance to the U.S. within hours of 9/11, sent troops to Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan and is a crucial player with NATO operations in Afghanistan.

    Azerbaijan was the first Muslim-majority country built on Western principles. It existed for 23 months and was invaded by and incorporated into the Soviet Union. During the collapse of the Soviet Union, Armenia, with materials and manpower from the Soviet Army, invaded the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan, occupied it, and it remains occupied by Armenia today. Moscow's involvement in the conflict resulted in calls for independence. Azerbaijan remains open to women, to the West, and to minority religions. Yet, the Radio Liberty projects an inaccurate and biased view. Congress would do well to note that between July 1 and August 5. The Radio Liberty published 30 articles and videos about Azerbaijan. Not one celebrates Azerbaijan's accomplishments. Instead, headlines such as, "Azeris Jailed for Life as lsquo;Iran Spies'" grace the website. No mention of pluralism, civil society, national and regional development, alliances with the U.S. and Israel. Recently, Senator Roger Wicker expressed how fortunate the U.S. is to have a stable ally in the Caspian region with a consistent track record of cooperation. He called it "encouraging" that Azerbaijan emerged from decades of communist rule on a path toward economic prosperity and freedom. The members of Congress expressing the same sentiments must pay attention to the activity of Radio Liberty. Yet Congress lets the Radio Liberty publish what it wants, further harming the U.S. in the international arena, at a time when the U.S. is engaged in air strikes in Iraq and strained relationships in the Middle East."
    10
  • Decline in gas price not so dangerous for Azerbaijan - expert
    28.08.2014 10:50
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132623.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132623.jpg
    We benefit from selling gas even ofr $300 per thousand cubic meters.

    "In September of the last year, when signing a contract with the Azerbaijani gas buyers, SOCAR representatives (the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan) did not conceal their expectations of the rise in gas price to $400. By some most optimistic expectations, the gas price must further rise to $500. However, even if the gas price is raised to that level, this will be a temporary phenomenon".

    Oxu.Az reports with reference to Echo newspaper, the statement came from chairman of the Center for Oil Studies Ilham Shaban.

    He said gas price is to decline for the long-term perspective in most forecasts.

    "The reason is that the demand in Europe will drop, while the volume of proposal will further grow. As known, Europe is actively developing alternative energy. This will significantly reduce gas consumption. On the other hand, the volume of gas supplied to Europe from different sources will further increase. Against this backdrop, the growth in gas prices seems unlikely. By Gazprom's estimates, the prices will drop by about $10 a year. But decline in gas prices is not so dangerous for our Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan benefits even from selling gas for $300 per thousand cubic meters", Shaban said.
    3
  • SOCAR to expand its filling stations network in Romania
    28.08.2014 10:39
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132622.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132622.jpg
    The website energynomics.ro has published an interview with CEO SOCAR Romania Hamza Karimov.

    What are your objectives, as general manager, for the following period?

    In the short run, very short I might say, SOCAR plans to increase investments in Romania. By May, we reached 27 filling stations throughout the country and we will continue opening new units. SOCAR has as target to increase the number of units, as a result of related increase in investment.

    We also wish to diversify and guarantee our services, so that a larger number of Romanians comes in contact with the Azerbaijani traditions and values promoted by SOCAR in Romania. In the light of its experience in the energy area, passion for travel and cuisine tradition, culture and Azerbaijani tourism, SOCAR aims at strengthening the friendship of over 550 years between Azerbaijan and Romania.

    What are the results of your activity that you are most satisfied with so far in Romania?

    We managed to open, in only several years, 27 filling stations and we invested over EUR 50mln, managing to create over 360 jobs.

    Currently, we have a significant coverage in Romania, being present in the following counties: BotoЕџani, Suceava, NeamЕЈ, IaЕџi, Bihor, BuzДѓu, BacДѓu, Vrancea, TimiЕџ, Ilfov and Cluj.

    Besides these concrete results, I am very proud of managing to promote the Azerbaijani traditions in SOCAR filling stations and thus getting the Romanians closer to our culture. Besides the specific Azerbaijani products that we offer in our filling stations - coffee in sand or pomegranate juice - we have also participated in the organization of several economic and cultural events that led to tighter Azerbaijani-Romanian relations.

    What are the main problems that the segment you activate in is facing and how could they be solved?

    For a network of filling stations, definitely the local infrastructure is an essential item. I am confident that the Government's projects in terms of infrastructure will be implemented, which will also generate a development of networks of filling stations on the local market. What are the main differences as far as Romania is concerned, in relation to other countries, in managing its main resources, but also in management and business? The main differences are advantages favor of Romania when we mention the diversity of resources, their quantity or the geopolitical context of the country. Let's not forget that Romania is in top 10, at global level, in terms of energy security and it can play an essential part in the region if it succeeds to increase the investment value in the coming years. At the same time, the good economic results recorded by Romania in 2013 give a positive signal to investors. It should be noticed that the local market has several competitive advantages, which create the prerequisites for a spectacular development in the coming years - onshore and offshore resources, the expertise of specialists in the area of resource exploration and exploitation, economic and political stability. Thus, we can say that it has both resources and the managing capacity to capitalize its potential. Besides these items, it's necessary to have predictability for the business environment, in order to foresee investments for the local market.

    SOCAR invested over EUR 50 mln. in Romania

    What should Romania's energy strategy focus on for a better use of resources?

    As known, in the energy sector, the exploration and exploitation of resources are achieved by methods and technologies that are quite costly and therefore few states manage to do it directly. Most often, private companies are those handling the exploration and exploitation of resources, according to the specific legislation of each country. In Romania, at this point there is a discussion on reviewing the royalty system so that the state wins more, and investors keep their interest. Moreover, providing a predictable legislation is the most important item to attract and keep large investors. If we mention the energy strategy, we need to consider that energy is an area with regional and global impact, especially for a state that has resources. But Romania has a wide range of production capacities - gas, coal, hydro, green energy. It is the authorities' duty to capitalize these resources at regional level and, implicitly, to the benefit of the local economy. For us, as investors, it's important to know what is the direction that Romania will go on in capitalizing these resources, respectively how it will manage to position itself at regional level.

    Should we be afraid of Russia, in energy terms?

    I don't believe that, in the XXI century, one can question whether a country should be afraid of another. It is obvious however that nothing of what Russia does, as one of the most powerful global energy players, can be overlooked. Energy is a defining element in the global economy, which is why any situation could have a certain impact. Romania has the advantage of resources and experience in oil and gas exploration and exploitation. It is known that Romanian specialists are appreciated and activate in the oil industry in many countries with such activities. In terms of energy export, I believe as long as there is a surplus of energy locally and the price is competitive at regional level, export is an opportunity in economic terms and this opportunity should be used, especially from the perspective of Romania's objective to become an energy hub at regional level.
    27
  • Armenians violate ceasefire
    28.08.2014 10:29
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132620.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132620.jpg
    Armenian armed forces have violated ceasefire again.

    Yesterday and past night Armenian armed forces fired at Azerbaijani positions from their posts near Sarijaly, Merzili villages of Agdam, Tapqaraqoyunlu village of Goranboy, Mehdili village of Jabrayil, Garakhanbayli village of Fizuli and from positions on nameless uplands.

    Sources from the Azerbaijan's Ministry of Defense told Oxu.Az that by the information, the enemy was silenced by retaliation fire.
    9
  • Woman claims charging iPhone 4 burned her breast
    28.08.2014 10:25
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428566.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428566.jpg
    Sleeping with your mobile charging beside you isn't uncommon but for one young mother, keeping her iPhone close at hand has had painful consequences, Daily Mail reported.

    Dionne Baxter, 24, fell asleep lying across her charging iPhone 4 but woke up in agony the next day with a five inch burn on her breast, the report said.

    Ms Baxter, a former warehouse worker from Purfleet in Essex, was rushed to hospital where doctors attempted to treat the wound with antibiotic cream and painkillers, according to the report.

    'I sleep in the nude and this large red mark was all down one side to the nipple,' Ms Baxter revealed in an interview.

    'When I touched the phone, it was so hot, I couldn't pick it up.'

    Ms Baxter's experience is not the first time that unwary users have found themselves injured by an overheating iPhone. Just two weeks ago, Jake Parker, 18, woke up to find himself with a painful burn on his arm after dozing off draped over his iPhone 5. And in February, a teenage girl was left with second degree burns after her iPhone caught fire while in her back pocket at school.

    The 14-year-old had just arrived for her French class at a middle school in Kennebunk, Maine, when the device spontaneously set alight and burnt her thigh and back.

    Ms Baxter, whose wound later became infected, now fears that she may not be able to breastfeed a second child should she have one.

    'It's dreadful,' she added. 'Imagine if my daughter had been on that side of the bed and it had burned her face.'

    Apple declined to comment when approached by MailOnline.
    6
  • Davutoglu elected leader of Turkey's ruling AKP party
    28.08.2014 10:01
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428546.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428546.jpg
    Turkey's Prime Minister-in-waiting Ahmet Davutoglu has been elected leader of the ruling Justice and Development Party, according to AA.

    Davutoglu, who has been serving as foreign minister since 2009, was elected Thursday with the votes of 1,382 delegates at an extraordinary congress of the party, known as AK Party.

    He succeeds President-elect Recep Tayyip Erdogan Erdogan, who will be sworn in to the office on Thursday.

    During his speech to thank the delegates for his election, Davutoglu pointed to Turkey's upcoming general elections in 2015, saying his party is strong enough to send 330 members to the parliament to change the constitution.

    AK Party currently holds 313 seats at the parliament.

    "I believe, with the strong support behind us, we will be successful in 2015," he said.

    Ahmet Davutoglu became the second chairman of AK Party after 13 years with Erdogan as the leader.

    He also said his party followed "virtuous" and "ethics-centered" politics and that paid off throughout the party's struggle with opposition parties.
    7
  • Well commissioned after repair on Guneshli field
    28.08.2014 09:51
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132617.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132617.jpg
    The daily output is to make 40 tonnes of condensate.

    Well No 84 was commissioned after major repair on the fifth platform of Guneshli field.

    According to Oxu.Az, by reports from SOCAR, the well was accepted to the operation fund with the daily output of 180,000 cubic meters of gas and 40 tonns of condensate from the depth range of 3426 to 3387 meters.

    The operation works on the well are carried by 28 May oil and gas producing department.
    5
  • Provocation against Azerbaijan
    28.08.2014 09:40
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132616.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132616.jpg
    The Israeli Hermes 450 drone downed Aug. 23 over the uranium enrichment facility in central Iran took off from Azerbaijanв's Nakhchivan Airbase, debkafileв's military and Iranian sources report.

    According to the portal which is close to Israeli intelligence services, tests by Iranian aviation experts and intelligence personnel indicated that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Commanders who originally attributed the takeoff to Saudi Arabia spoke too soon.

    Earlier, the commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, brigade general Husein Salami stated that the drone was launched from the territory of the state neighboring Israel. The commander threatened Israel with a response strike: "We will respond not diplomatically but a military strike", Salami said, according to Iranian media.

    Debkafile writes that the Azerbaijani canton of Nakhchivan, bordering Iran, Armenia, and Turkey, hosts a small military airbase. Three years ago, another Hermes 450 used it as a jumping-off point towards Armenia, where the Armenian air defense shot it down.

    In his Monday Aug. 25 announcement, Revolutionary Guards Air Force Commander Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh said it had not taken to the skies from Israel, but did not specify its provenance. He also fell short of attributing the drone to Israel, announcing only that the plane was an Israeli-made Hermes 450 with an operational range of 800 kilometers. Iran's Arabic television station Al-Alam displayed parts of the drone on air, but they showed no Israeli identification markings.

    Armed with the fact that Israel is 1,100 flying kilometers from Iran, many Israeli military analysts misleadingly went to great lengths to claim that the images offered by the Revolutionary Guards were not of a Hermes 450 or of any aircraft in the service of Israel. Because of its wide-ranging satellite surveillance coverage, the analysts argued, Israel has no need to risk sending a drone armed with classified intelligence systems into Iranian airspace.

    These claims simply don't hold water.

    debkafile's military sources report that the Hermes 450 boasts a range of video and still cameras that can capture extremely high-resolution color images. Thermal imaging devices allow the cameras to operate in poor visibility and almost any weather condition.

    Without specifying who dispatched the drone, Iranian Defense Minister Hossein Deghan announced that his country would retaliate by supplying arms to Palestinians in the West Bank. He did not detail how these weapons transfers would be carried our, or for which groups they are intended.

    According to our sources, this vague response points to frustration in Tehran over its general helplessness in the face of regular drone flights every few weeks from Nakhchivan over its nuclear facilities. The drones measure radioactive levels, data for the accurate calculation of the progress of Iran's uranium enrichment program.

    Iran has tried for two years to down these drones - without success, with this week's incident providing a notable exception. Iran has repeatedly attempted to electronically control trespassing UAVs and down them intact, in the same way as they downed a complete American RQ-170 in December 2011. But so far, they have not obtained a complete Israeli drone.

    Last Saturday, the Iranians shot down the Hermes by means of an anti-air missile ambush, prompting a certain amount of boasting from Tehran. But the UAV was not a stealth craft as the Iranians claimed and much of their crowing is intended to cover up their long record of failure. Indeed, the drone was already 300 km inside Iranian airspace from Nakhchivan before it was detected.
    5
  • Russian court closes 3 McDonald's branches in Moscow
    28.08.2014 09:24
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132615.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132615.jpg
    Russian courts on Wednesday ordered the temporary closure of three McDonald's restaurants in Moscow over breaches of sanitary rules.

    This came amid a standoff with the West over Ukraine, APA reports quoting Reuters.

    The restaurants on Moscow's Manezh square, under the walls of the Kremlin, at Pushkin Square and on Prospect Mira have been closed since last week following an order from state food safety watchdog Rospotrebnadzor.

    Rospotrebnadzor has so far ordered the temporary closure of a total of five McDonald's restaurants in Russia. Sweeping checks, including unscheduled inspections, have been unveiled across Russian regions.

    Russian businessmen have said the crackdown is linked to the crisis over Ukraine, which has soured U.S.-Russian relations and led to a round of sanctions and trade restrictions. The food safety watchdog has denied that its actions are politically motivated.

    McDonald's said it would appeal the Wednesday's rulings.

    "We do not agree with the courts' decisions and will appeal them according to established procedures," a spokeswoman for McDonald's in Russia said.

    A lawyer representing McDonald's in the court, Maksim Titarenko, was also quoted as saying the courts' decisions to close the branches for 90 days were unjustified.

    "The court orders the maximum penalty under this article of the Code of Administrative Offences although there are no grounds for it," Interfax news agency cited Titarenko as saying.
    9
  • Ilham Aliyev signs decree
    28.08.2014 09:13
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132613.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132613.jpg
    President of Azerbaijan has signed a decree.

    Ilham Aliyev has signed a decree on measures for reconstruction of the Shakarabad - Babek-Negram-Arazkand ring road in Babek region of the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic.

    Oxu.Az reports with reference to AzerTag that in line with the decree, AZN 5m will be allocated on the first stage from Reserve Fund of the President to the Cabinet Ministers of the Nakhchivan AR. The road connects seven settlements with a population of 31,000 people.

    The Finance Ministry is empowered to ensure funding envisaged in the decree.
    22
  • Freedom House criticizes Ankara over Internet freedoms
    28.08.2014 08:55
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132611.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132611.jpg
    Twitter was banned in Turkey in March after President-elect Recep Tayyip ErdoДџan claimed it was not abiding by court orders to remove certain links.

    Washington-based watchdog Freedom House has criticized the Turkish government over increasing restrictions on the Internet, describing Turkey as a "battleground state" in Internet freedom in its latest report, Hurriyet Daily reports.

    The report, titled "The struggle for Turkey's Internet," comes ahead of the hosting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Istanbul in September. It states that Turkey's hosting of the IGF is timely because of the country's critical role as a "swing state," or more fittingly a "battleground state" on issues of Internet policy.

    The term "battleground state" was used for Turkey, Freedom House said, in order to describe a place where a young population, improving technology, and international connections could result in a free Internet envied by the world, or where government tactics might provide a model for shutting down a vibrant online sphere.

    It also touched on the new Press Law, currently in the committee stage at Parliament, which it said would force broadly defined "Internet news sites" to register and name their owners and authors, echoing a law that went into effect Aug. 1 in Russia.

    "After crudely blocking Twitter in March, the government has also now increased its use of court orders to the social media company and is increasingly finding success in getting Twitter to remove content," it stated.

    Twitter was banned in Turkey in March after President-elect Recep Tayyip ErdoДџan claimed it was not abiding by court orders to remove certain links. YouTube was also banned in the same month.

    "Even more than how it votes at international Internet governance forums, Turkey is a battleground state in how it governs the Internet at home," the report said. "Because of its position as an OECD and G-20 country, not to mention an EU candidate and a member of NATO, the example Turkey sets is one that other countries facing similar challenges from online speech will be watching. Right now, the contradiction between Turkey's words at the U.N. and deeds at home only serves to reinforce the belief that international norms can be manipulated in order to curtail domestic freedoms when needed."

    As of December 2012, Turkish users spent the second-most amount of time online on average in Europe, after the United Kingdom, the report also said, with more than 90 percent of the Turkish population aged 15-64 having a Facebook account and more than 70 percent on Twitter. Turkey is also notable for young people's use of the Internet for news.

    "A recent Gallup/BBG survey showed that among 15- to 24-year-olds, the Internet had nearly matched television as a source of news (71 percent for Internet versus 75 percent for TV). The comparable split for 25- to 34-year-olds was 56 percent Internet versus 90 percent TV. Forty-seven percent of the 15-to-24 cohort got their news from social media, all despite the fact that fixed broadband and mobile broadband penetration rates are currently only about half of OECD averages," the report said.

    In a fairly optimistic conclusion, the Freedom House report states that there are structural reasons to hope that Turkey will not be able to consolidate control over the Internet as firmly as countries like Russia and Azerbaijan. "National institutions, including the Constitutional Court and the constitution itself, are stronger in Turkey than in consolidated autocracies. Civil society is more diverse, vocal, and connected to transnational networks. The state is not yet dominated by an all-powerful executive," it said, also suggesting that Turkey will face pressure from its European partners to improve its approach to the online sphere.

    "These factors are unlikely to produce a sudden reversal in the country's Internet policies or the broader negative trends in governance that are driven by domestic political dynamics. But they will create a drag on authoritarian consolidation and preserve space in which free and independent voices in traditional media and online continue to develop and thrive. These voices are the ones that can help preserve the liberalism and diversity that have gathered strength in Turkey over the last 20 years," the report added.
    8
  • Zakir Hasanov visits Romania
    28.08.2014 08:48
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132610.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/132610.jpg
    Azerbaijanв's Defense Minister Zakir Hasanov started his official visit to Romania on 27 August.

    Hasanov held negotiations with the Defense Minister of Romania, Mircea Dusa, Oxu.Az reports with reference to the press service for the Defense Ministry of Azerbaijan. The sides discussed issues of cooperation, regional security and prospects of interaction between the two ministries.

    After the negotiations, the ministers held a briefing for journalists.
    3
  • Davutoglu elected leader of Turkey's ruling AKP party
    27.08.2014 22:17
    http://azertag.az/sites/default/files/1409152512.jpg
    http://azertag.az/sites/default/files/1409152512.jpg
    Turkey's Prime Minister-in-waiting Ahmet Davutoglu has been elected leader of the ruling Justice and Development Party, according to Anadoly Agency.

    Davutoglu, who has been serving as foreign minister since 2009, was elected Thursday with the votes of 1,382 delegates at an extraordinary congress of the party, known as AK Party.

    He succeeds President-elect Recep Tayyip Erdogan Erdogan, who will be sworn in to the office on Thursday.

    During his speech to thank the delegates for his election, Davutoglu pointed to Turkey's upcoming general elections in 2015, saying his party is strong enough to send 330 members to the parliament to change the constitution.

    AK Party currently holds 313 seats at the parliament.

    "I believe, with the strong support behind us, we will be successful in 2015," he said.

    Ahmet Davutoglu became the second chairman of AK Party after 13 years with Erdogan as the leader.

    He also said his party followed "virtuous" and "ethics-centered" politics and that paid off throughout the party's struggle with opposition parties.
    126
  • Nigeria closes all schools until October
    27.08.2014 21:40
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428476.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_428476.jpg
    All schools in Nigeria have been ordered to remain shut until 13 October as part of measures to prevent the spread of the deadly Ebola virus. The new academic year was due to start on Monday.

    But the education minister ordered the closures to allow staff to be trained on how to handle suspected Ebola cases.

    Five people have died of Ebola in Nigeria. The West Africa outbreak has centred on Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, killing more than 1,400 people.

    It is the largest ever outbreak and has infected an estimated 2,615 people. About half of those infected have died. The virus is spread between humans through direct contact with infected bodily fluids. There is no cure for Ebola but with intensive care treatment and proper hydration, patients have a chance of survival. It spread to Nigeria - Africa's most populous country - in July, when a person infected with Ebola flew from Liberia to Lagos.
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