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Arshin mal alan by great Uzeyir Hajibeyli conquers Los Angeles
08.09.2013 22:09
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Los Angeles has hosted the premiere of Arshin mal alan (The Cloth Peddler), a world-known operetta by great Azerbaijani composer Uzeyir Hajibeyli.

The operetta was performed by an all American team and produced by famous director Michael Schnack. Actors had diligent rehearsals for several months. They said the toughest thing to do was to learn to sing in Azerbaijani.

James Judd, who played the musical comedy`s main character, Asgar, said it took them a long time to learn the words of arias.

Asha Lindsey, who played Gulchohra, said she learned a lot about Azerbaijan`s history and culture, as well as Islam when she played in Arhshin mal alan for the first time seven years ago. "I have many Azerbaijani friends. I can tell much about this unique country. I know very well what my character wants. If Gulchohra lived now, she would have been very brave," Lindsey added.

Michael Schnack said the Americans have a different approach to tradition, especially in an artistic sense. "Younger generations in America are open to changes. One of the reasons why Azerbaijan is of such interest to Americans is that the West was once strongly influencing this country."

Hundred years ago helped by oil tycoon and philanthropist Haji Zeynalabdin Taghiyev, Uzeyir Hajibeyli presented his brainchild to the world. Symbolically, hundred years later this masterpiece of Hajibeyli is staged in the USA with the support from the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCA), a major actor on the global energy market. The Consulate General of Azerbaijan in Los Angeles and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism greatly contributed to organizing the event.

It was Los Angeles where in 1937 Armenians attempted to plagiarize this masterpiece by great Hajibeyli.

Azerbaijan`s Consul General Nasimi Aghayev said California is home to 1.5 million Armenians, with most of them living in Los Angeles. "The Armenian lobby is carrying out active propaganda against us. In order to prevent this we must make the truths about Azerbaijan known to the American society, and we are doing this. And the best way to do this is to promote Azerbaijan`s reach cultural legacy," said the Consul General.

The musical comedy was played to a full house at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, one of the premier opera houses of the world also famous for hosting Oscar Awards ceremonies in 1970-90s. An audience of 3,000 people enjoyed this comic and romantic story of love full of songs and humor for about two hours. The performance received a standing ovation.

Following the performance the guests who came to watch it were exchanging their impressions. Some said they enjoyed the music, while others were amazed by the setting and the national costumes.

Kalma Blumber, a Los Angeles resident, said: "It`s fantastic. Amazing music, unique costumes, a very impressive story. I`ve discovered much about Azerbaijan, its history. It`s a sensation."

Austrian Consul in Los Angeles Liliana Popova said: "Great, breathtaking music. My brother is a pianist. He worked with a symphonic orchestra in Baku, and I have many recollections of that time. And I`m very happy today. I`m really amazed by today`s performance."

Jim Kerkman, a Los Angeles resident, said: "It`s a remarkable event that opens the door for us to the beautiful East in a true sense of the word."

The Cloth Peddler conquered Los Angeles, which is considered the movie capital of the world and is home to Hollywood. But to amaze Hollywood is no easy task.
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  • Facebook new app reminiscent of Internet's early days
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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439142.jpg
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    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic137183.jpg
    /AzerNews/

    By Mushvig Mehdiyev

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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439138.jpg
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    http://www.topnews.az/images/logo.png
    Baku, October 24, AzerTAc

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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439123.jpg
    The Baku 2015 European Games today begins a nationwide tour of Azerbaijanв's schools called 'European Games For Everyoneв' to educate and inform pupils about next summerв's inaugural event.

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  • Microsoft co-founder Allen pledges $100 mn Ebola
    24.10.2014 10:59
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    Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Paul Allen said Thursday he was boosting his donations to combat the Ebola outbreak in West Africa to $100 million.

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  • Second International Ashiq Festival due in Baku
    24.10.2014 10:59
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    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic137182.jpg
    /AzerNews/

    By Amina Nazarli

    The second International Ashiq Festival will be held in Azerbaijan on November 10-18.

    To be co-organized by Heydar Aliyev Foundation and Culture and Tourism Ministry Ashiqs Association, the festival is aimed to promote the art of Azerbaijani Ashiq in the world, to increase the role of Ashiq in the development of the national culture and to bring together performers of Ashiq music throughout the world.

    Some outstanding performers from Turkey, Iran, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Russia as well as all regions of Azerbaijan will give splendid concerts.

    The festival will be held in Azerbaijan State Musical Theatre on November 12. During the period of November 13-17 Azerbaijani regions including Yevlakh, Gadabay, Shamkir, Qazakh, Tovuz and Ujar will host the grandiose event.

    The first International Ashiq Festival was held in Azerbaijan in 2010 attracting lots of attentions.

    The art of Azerbaijani Ashiqs was included in the UNESCO`s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2009, as a symbol of national cultural identity that embodies various artistic spheres practiced by poets, composers, singers or actor-narrators, thus uniting in one artistic expression the communities of the entire country.

    The art of Azerbaijani Ashiqs combines poetry, storytelling, dance and vocal and instrumental music into a traditional performance art that is a symbol of Azerbaijani culture. Characterized by the accompaniment of the saz, a stringed musical instrument, the classical repertoire includes 200 songs, 150 literary-musical compositions known as dastans, nearly 2,000 poems in different traditional poetic forms and numerous stories.

    The regional variations may include other musical instruments, but all are united by a common national language and artistic history. Ashiqs take part in weddings, friendly parties and festive events throughout the Caucasus and appear on concert stages, radio and television, sometimes synthesizing classical melodies with contemporary ones as they continue to recreate their repertoire.

    Their art is considered a symbol of national identity and the guardian of Azerbaijani language, literature and music. Ashiqs also help to promote cultural exchange and dialogue.
    2
  • Four ways for OPEC to react amid falling oil prices
    24.10.2014 10:49
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    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic137181.jpg
    By Aygun Badalova

    Oil prices keep on falling on the world markets with Brent now at slightly over $86 per barrel and WTI at almost $83 per barrel. This is roughly a 25-percent decline from their peak in June ($106 per barrel) and at the same time a four-year low.

    Descending tendency in oil prices has already caused concerns among OPEC member states and the countries that are highly dependent on oil exports. Only some countries may be exception from the list, and Saudi Arabia is among them.

    The country '" the worldв's largest oil exporter - with its huge oil reserves ad incomes may remain invulnerable to low oil prices. Saudi Arabia is no longer united with other OPEC members in their decisions regarding oil production quotas. This time the country again refused to cut its oil production level in order to enable for oil prices to slightly recover.Russia and Iran are the countries whose economies will feel the most negative effect of the low prices. In particular, Russiaв's 2014 budget was calculated proceeding from the oil price of $93 per barrel. In September the countryв's ministry of finance said that Russiaв's economy lost two percent of GDP in the third quarter as the result of a drop in oil prices from $110 to $93 per barrel.

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    It is worth to admit that low oil pricesв' negative effect on Iranian economy will be significant. The countryв's current year budget envisages the price of $100 per barrel.The issue of whether to keep or cut OPECв's oil production quotas will be discussed in late November. Cartelв's current production quota amounts to 30 million barrels per day (mbd). OPEC holds 60 percent of the worldв's oil reserves and 30 percent of supplies.

    To stabilize prices at current levels or push them higher, there needs to be a supply adjustment from the OPEC members, analysts from the U.S. bank JP Morgan believe.''However, since OPEC adopted a collective target of 30 mbd in November 2011, no producer can be held accountable for deterioration in the market conditions. Thus OPEC members are jointly responsible for ensuring market stability, and recent pricing decisions by MEG (Middle East Gulf) OPEC members may be seen as forcing the issue of burden sharing onto the negotiating table in the November meeting,'' the analysts said in a report obtained by Trend.

    Competition to preserve market share raises the prospect that OPEC members will be unable to reach an agreement on how to share the burden in an egalitarian manner, said analysts.

    If OPEC can agree to withdraw production from the market, the analysts estimate a cut of one mbd would be necessary.

    However, given the inevitable time lag between a decision and its implementation, and the risk that OPEC fails to agree how to share any reduction in the output, further downside price risks remain, they believe.

    JP Morganв's analysts think that the likelihood of OPEC agreeing to reduce output in November is around 60 percent.

    Failure to do so would suggest continuation of the over-supplied market conditions that have characterized third quarter of this year and contributed to weaker prices.

    ''The crucial question is who cuts production and by how much. In recent years, most OPEC members have had little or no spare capacity. Thus, increased demand for crude, either due to demand growth, or loss of supplies elsewhere, e.g. from Syria, South Sudan, Iran or Libya, has been largely met by Saudi Arabia. In the third quarter of 2010, when OPEC last produced 29.4 mbd, Saudi Arabia's output was 8.3 mbd - 1.2 mbd below our 4Q 2014 estimate,'' the analysts said.

    Overall, the experts see four scenarios for the upcoming OPEC meeting. First one is that no agreement will be reached, which will cause further decline of oil prices with the probability to reach $65 per barrel.

    The second scenario is that OPEC agrees to reduce production by 0.5 mbd. In this case oil prices could fall further in the short-term, but likely by less than $5 per barrel. Depending on the speed of implementation, prices may go up slightly later and remain within the range of $80-$90 per barrel broadly through the first quarter of 2014.

    The third scenario is that OPEC agrees to cut production by one mbd. In that case prices will likely tick up higher than $10 per barrels.

    And the last scenario is that OPEC agrees to cut by 1.5 mbd. Such scenario could potentially lead to the prices reaching $100 per barrel at the end of Q3 of 2015.

    2
  • ICT sector developing day by day
    24.10.2014 10:39
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    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic137180.jpg
    /AzerNews/

    By Nigar Orujova

    Energy rich Azerbaijan is striving to develop its non-oil sector and the development of Information and Communication Technology sphere is of particular importance for the country.

    Over the past five years, the information technology sector of Azerbaijan has increased two fold. As figures show, revenues of the ICT sector in Azerbaijan increased by more than 12 percent in the nine months of 2014.

    Currently, the internet penetration rate of Azerbaijan stands at 70 percent. The broadband Internet penetration among the population stands at 50 percent.

    Operators in Azerbaijan provided services totaling 1140.5 million manats in January-September 2014, which is 12.6 percent higher than the same period of 2013, State Statistics Committee reports.

    Over 72 percent of the total volume of information and communication services was given to ordinary people with 58.8 percent of the total income received falling on mobile services.

    The total income received from the mobile services in the country for the mentioned period amounted to 671.1 million manats, which is 7.3 percent higher than in January-September, 2013.

    Mobile sector is one of the well developing spheres of the ICT sector in the country, the mobile phone penetration in the country stands at 110 percent, thanks to services by its three main mobile operators.

    Despite this, 55,900 mobile phones and tablets were imported into the country in January-September. Thus, about 7,000 phones were brought to the over 9.5 million people.

    However, the market remains stable as the number of imported phones decreased by 4.8 percent in comparison with the same period of 2013.

    Today, Azerbaijanis prefer portable computers to personal ones. The market share of PCs decreased by about 20 percent, while the share of notebooks raised by about 50 percent in January-September. The interest in tablets has also increased by 39 percent.

    Moreover, with the development of the broadband Internet infrastructure in the capital and the regions, the Internet penetration in the country will increase.

    The cost of this 'Fiber to the home' project is estimated to reach more than 450 million manats ($573 million). The ultimate goal of the project is to provide the whole country, including remote rural settlements, with high-speed Internet in the range of 30-100 Mbit/s, and bring the number of broadband Internet users up to 85 percent from the current 70 percent.

    This will allow Azerbaijan to enter the club of developed countries by 2017.

    The volume of consumed incoming Internet traffic on the network of the Azerbaijani primary provider company Delta Telecom increased by 20 percent and amounted to 120 gigabits in September, compared with August.

    ICT is supposed to enter every sphere of life in Azerbaijan.

    From e-health cards to e-contracts, e-signature, e-wallet, e-commerce, and many other sectors are now switches to the electronic format. With launching of the first telecommunication satellite Azerspace-1, the country would switch to the digital broadcasting.

    The total investment made in the development of information, communication and mail sector amounted to 62.5 million manats or 0.8 percent of the total investment in the country's economy in the first half of 2014.

    Last year the country invested about 202.2 million manats (over $257 million) in the ICT sector and postal services. Investment in the development of the ICT sector in Azerbaijan is expected to increase to $4 billion by 2020.

    Azerbaijan ranks 49th in the Global Information Technology Report 2014 in terms of the Network Readiness Index (NRI) compiled by the World Economic Forum (WEF). The country also holds a leading position in the CIS in terms of the number of broadband internet subscribers.

    The Land of Fire ranks 48th in terms of the number of fixed broadband connections per 100 inhabitants, being ahead of Russia that stands at 50th place and Turkey at 69th.

    At present, Azerbaijan is the leading country of the region in terms of ICT development, which technically helps other countries.

    The country has launched a project to create a platform of broadband connection TASIM, which is endorsed by the ITU and supported by the three resolutions of UN General Assembly.

    The TASIM project envisions the creation of a major transit link from Frankfurt to Hong Kong. The line will connect the major centers of information exchange in Europe and Asia together, stretching through China, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, and Germany. A reserve North transit line will traverse the territory of Russia, Ukraine and Poland.

    Thus, with all these and future projects, the ICT may become one of the profitable sphere of the non-oil sector in the near future.
    3
  • First Ebola case hits New York
    24.10.2014 10:24
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439097.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439097.jpg
    A doctor who recently returned to New York from treating Ebola patients in Guinea tested positive for the deadly virus Thursday, US news reports said.

    The doctor, Craig Spencer, was taken to Bellevue Hospital and placed in isolation, The New York Times said, calling it New York's first diagnosed case of the deadly disease.

    He had been rushed by ambulance from his home in Harlem to Bellevue suffering from a 103-degree Fahrenheit (39.4 degree Celsius) fever and nausea, The New York Post reported before his case was confirmed as Ebola.

    Bellevue is one of three hospitals in Manhattan and eight in the state of New York equipped to handle patients diagnosed with Ebola.
    4
  • Armenians fire on positions of Azerbaijani Army
    24.10.2014 10:23
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134216.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134216.jpg
    The ceasefire was violated 15 times in various directions of the frontline within a day.

    APA reports quoting the Defense Ministry's website that Armenian armed units fired on the positions of Azerbaijani Armed Forces from their posts near Ashagi Seyidahmadli, Horadiz and Garakhanbeyli villages of Fuzuli, Kuropatkino village of Khojavand, Mehdili village of Jabrayil region and nameless uplands of Fuzuli, Jabrayil and Khojavand regions.

    The enemy was silenced by retaliation fire.
    3
  • Concerns rise over change in structure of Turkish gendarmerie
    24.10.2014 10:08
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134215.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134215.jpg
    Turkey's gendarmerie forces are set for reform, amid the government's contentious new security package.

    The government is preparing to reshape the country's 175-year-old gendarmerie forces, but some observers have raised concerns about plans to link the complex military branch totally to the Interior Ministry.

    There are concerns about creating a politicized gendarmerie force, according to sources, who say the branch might be more open to political intervention if the appointments and registries of the gendarmerie are controlled by a civil body, not its traditional military hierarchy.

    Another major concern is that such a move might reveal security weaknesses, particularly amid the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in neighboring Syria and Iraq. Besides, the soldiers who have fought against outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) militants in the east and southeast are usually from the gendarmerie or the land forces. The chain of command might be negatively affected if one of these arms is connected to a civil body, sources said.

    The plans also risk the number of qualified soldiers, they added, according to Hurriyet Daily.

    According to the new regulations, the Interior Ministry and provincial governors will have a say on the gendarmarie's non-military duties, authorizations and responsibilities, Interior Minister Efkan Ala confirmed in a televised interview late on Oct. 22.

    The move is part of a new security package, which has been criticized by the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) and many others, as a step back in terms of democratic rights. "The package clarifies the responsibilities and duties of the gendarmerie and coastguard organization, which serve public order," Ala said.

    The regional gendarmerie posts headed by a brigadier general will be removed, and the provincial commanderships will be directly linked to governors, who will also be named as provincial commanders and who will also be the superior for the forces, according to the new regulation, sources said.

    The dismissal of staff will also be undertaken by the ministry, while the Armed Forces will lend a full general to the gendarmerie and the head of the gendarmerie will keep his seat at the National Security Council.

    The draft also foresees a change in the uniforms of the gendarmerie. The present green uniforms will be switched to either blue or dark blue, as seen in European Union members, which will give the new uniform a more "civil touch," Minister Ala said.

    The final touches to the draft will reportedly be made after final talks with the General Staff.

    Speaking more broadly about the controversial new security package, Ala was keen to stress that the it would "not violate the rights of any citizens that obey the law," adding that it would include some regulations increasing the effectiveness and capabilities of the ministry regarding institutions that it cooperates with.
    6
  • Priests in dance-off become web sensation
    24.10.2014 09:58
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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439082.jpg
    The Rev David Rider, 29, and the Rev John Gibson, 28, were filmedduring a fundraiser at an elite US seminary near the Vatican.

    Father Rider, of Hyde Park, New York, first dazzled the crowd with a tap-dance routine, only to be upstaged by the fleet-footed Irish dance of Father Gibson, from Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

    The pair then begin battling it out to impress the crowd in the clip, shot at the North American College in April.

    Journalist Joan Lewis recorded the event and posted it on YouTube, where it has had some 260,000 views.

    Most of the comments were overwhelmingly positive, though one or two felt it was disrespectful to dance under a crucifix and a portrait of Pope Francis.

    The men in cloth with moves have drawn comparisons with a nun who won an Italian television talent show in June.

    SisterCristina Scucciasigned a record contract after her triumphant performances in full habit on The Voice.
    3
  • Co-chairs about upcoming presidential meeting in Paris
    24.10.2014 09:48
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134213.jpg
    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134213.jpg
    The co-chairs refused to comment on the appointment of a trial of Shahbaz Guliyev and Dilgam Asgarov by separatist Nagorno Karabakh regime.

    The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group expect the Azerbaijani and Armenian Presidents to have a serious discussion in Paris about the key issues of a settlement, said OSCE's press service said in its statement to APA.

    "The Presidents' recent meetings in Sochi and Wales revitalized the most important channel of communication between the sides. We expect the Presidents to have a serious discussion in Paris about the key issues of a settlement. We also hope the Presidents will agree to measures that can increase trust and transparency between the sides. The Co-Chairs stand ready to help in whatever way we can", said OSCE's press service.

    "The OSCE Minsk Group is the only format the sides trust to mediate a lasting settlement to the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh. The leadership in Armenia and Azerbaijan has publicly expressed their support for the Co-Chairs' efforts, and we are ready to assist the sides to reach a peaceful resolution. A resolution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict depends on the political will of the Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan, and not on treaties or alliances. The Co-Chairs hope with the recent contacts between the Presidents they will commit themselves to a settlement", the statement said.

    The co-chairs refused to comment on the appointment of a trial of Azerbaijani hostages - Shahbaz Guliyev and Dilgam Asgarov by separatist Nagorno Karabakh regime on October 27.
    3
  • Attempts to isolate Russia futile: Kremlin
    24.10.2014 09:18
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134210.jpg
    Attempts to isolate Russia are futile, as real sanctions could be imposed only by the United Nations (UN), while the rest is pure pressure, Kremlin chief of staff Sergei Ivanov said Thursday.

    "You know, maybe it sounds a little harsh, but I really think so - it is impossible to isolate Russia, and the world is not going to do so. It is not the entire world that is isolating us. So-called sanctions are imposed [on Russia]. I say 'so-called' because real sanctions could only be imposed by the UN Security Council, and the rest is pure pressure, not sanctions," Ivanov said.

    Western countries have introduced several rounds of sanctions against Russia, accusing Moscow of escalating the crisis in Ukraine, although Russia has repeatedly denied the allegations. The sanctions implemented by the United States, the European Union and some other countries target certain individuals, as well as Russia's largest banks, defense and energy companies.

    Russia has consistently expressed its support for the peaceful settlement of the Ukrainian crisis and pointed out it was not involved in the conflict. Moscow called the language of sanctions counterproductive and said that such restrictive measures posed a threat to international stability.
    7
  • Kalbajar hostageв's daughter: I miss my dad
    24.10.2014 08:57
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134208.jpg
    Employees of AzVision.az website visited the house of Shahbaz Guliyev who was captured by Armenians in Kalbajar, and talked to his family members.

    Shahbaz Giliyev's daughter, fourth former Elza says her biggest wish is to see her father back:

    "I am happy when he is at home (cries). I want to know when my father is back. I love him very much, he is so dear to me. I want my father back (cries). I miss him. It has already been the fourth month that I don't see him. I am waiting impatiently for the day he comes and we are all together. When he is back home, I will tell him: lsquo;Don't go so far anymore'. I miss him very much, I want to hug my dad".

    Shahbaz's brother Ilham said he did not know that his brother visited Kalbajar:

    "I learned about his capture from journalists. He was captured by kafirs, and everything is so bad. When there is no brother, there is no support to family. I am grateful to our state, they help us. May Allah open the doors for Shahbaz and Dilgam. They both are our brothers".

    Shahbaz's wife Albina:

    "It is very hard for us to read his letters. We want him to be with us. It is hard for me to hear our daughter Elza asking about him, asking him back (cries). Elza is the only child in our family. She is crying every day. We ask President Ilham Aliyev. My only dream is to see Shahbaz with us".
    5
  • Czech president to visit Azerbaijan
    24.10.2014 08:52
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134207.jpg
    The president of the Czech Republic will pay a visit to Azerbaijan in February-March 2015.

    Azerbaijani Ambassador to the Czech Republic Farid Shafiyev told a group of journalists who are on a visit to Prague, APA reports.

    He said the Czech minister of industry and trade too will visit Azerbaijan in early December: "There's going to be a business forum during that visit".

    F.Shafiyev added that relations between Azerbaijan and the Czech Republic are successfully developing: "The president of the Czech Republic is scheduled to make a visit to Azerbaijan next year. Economic issues are the top priority. Agricultural and industrial relations are a priority as well. The two countries have friendly relations".
    4
  • Qarabag Agdam beat Ukrainian Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk, become first Azerbaijani club to win UEFA Europa League group stage match
    24.10.2014 03:27
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    http://www.topnews.az/images/logo.png
    Baku, October 24, AzerTAc

    Azerbaijani football club Qarabag Agdam have defeated Ukrainian Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk 1-0 in the third round of the UEFA Europa League group stage in Kiev.

    Muarem Muarem`s 21st minute goal was enough for Gurban Gurbanov`s side to make history as the first Azerbaijani club to seal a victory in an UEFA Europa League group stage.

    With 4 points, Qarabag are now runners-up in Group F behind Italian Internazionale Milano who have 7 points after being held to a goalless draw by French Saint-Etienne.

    The French club are third with 3 points with Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk remaining at the bottom with 1 point.

    Qarabag will take on the Ukrainian club in the fourth round when they clash in Baku on November 6.
    62
  • Wenger admits gamble paid off
    23.10.2014 23:58
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438980.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438980.jpg
    ArsГЁne Wenger admitted it had been difficult to foresee Arsenalв's late recovery against Anderlecht in Brussels, where they had trailed 1-0 in the final two minutes. But goals from Kieran Gibbs and Lukas Podolski manufactured a stunning turnaround and allowed the club to reignite their Champions League hopes.

    Wenger finished with six attack-minded players on the field and he talked afterwards of a ''gambling situation'' in which he somehow came up trumps. The drama went some way to making up for a generally uninspiring performance was pock-marked by errors and a defensive switch-off for the Anderlecht goal.

    ''I know by experience that the nerves play a part in the last five minutes in the Champions League,'' Wenger said. ''And that we had to get into those five minutes without conceding the second goal. If they had scored the second goal, it was game over. I had hope. It didnв't look likely but it happened. We took all the risks and, in the end, it paid off. Itв's a little bit of a gambling situation that happens in this kind of game and it worked tonight. It did not look obvious, that is for sure.

    ''The turning point was not to concede the second goal. They had a good chance that they didnв't take and, in the end, the quality of the players who came on and our experience made the difference, unexpectedly. As long as we didnв't concede the second goal, I thought we had a chance to take at least a point.

    ''Itв's a bit unexpected to take the three, considering the quality of the match that Anderlecht played.''

    Wenger was asked whether he gave credit for his teamв's spirit or was worried about the overall performance. ''Both,'' he replied. ''We had the spirit but it was disappointing that we didnв't create more. I put that down to the fact that Anderlecht defended very well.''

    Podolski entered as an 83rd-minute substitute and the timing of his first goal of the season could hardly have been better. ''He is frustrated and I understand that,'' Wenger said of the forwardв's lack of playing time. ''But we know he can always score. It took him a while to get back to a good physical level [after the World Cup] and now, heв's nearly there. Itв's not a coincidence that he has over 100 caps for Germany. He is a guy who you want to have the ball in the box.''
    29
  • Pakistan bus attack kills eight in Quetta
    23.10.2014 23:13
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438977.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438977.jpg
    Eight people have been killed after gunmen opened fire on a bus carrying Shia Muslims in Balochistan, Pakistan.

    The victims, members of the cityв's Hazara community, were returning from a vegetable market in Quetta, the provincial capital, when gunmen attacked their vehicle.

    ''Two gunmen boarded the bus and shot the men,'' a local police officer, Imran Qureshi, said. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the incident.

    Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, a radical Sunni group, has previously carried out gun and bomb attacks on Hazaras. The militant group has virtually turned Quetta, where the Hazara community is concentrated, into a hunting ground for Shia, with leaflets shoved under doorways claiming they are infidels who deserve to die.

    Given the history of attacks on Hazaras, police usually provide them with security when they go shopping in Quetta. ''This particular group of Hazaras had not informed us about their movement,'' a senior officer, Aitzaz Goraya, said.

    According to the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, up to 200,000 Hazaras have fled to other cities or abroad in recent years.

    Shia Muslims comprise about a fifth of Pakistanв's population of about 180 million. More than 800 have been killed in attacks in the country since 2012, Human Rights Watch says.
    8
  • Ebola vaccine trials in Africa could start by January: WHO
    23.10.2014 22:39
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439026.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439026.jpg
    The World Health Organization said that two vaccines for Ebola could be used in medical trials in West Africa as early as January. An effective vaccine'" combined with increased international aid and healthcare volunteers '" should help tohalt an outbreak thatв's infected upwards of 9,000 people and killed at least 4,500, almost all in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.

    The new vaccines are currently undergoing, or in some cases will soon begin, clinical trials in Europe, Africa, and the United States. Experimental Ebola drugs were used to treat a handful of patients in August, but without clinical testing the WHO has been reluctant to roll it out on a larger scale.

    As The Christian Science Monitor reported at the time, proceeding with caution with an experimental drug is paramount, particularly '' on a continent with history of being on the receiving end" of Western medicines.
    8
  • Deputy Speaker of Azerbaijani Parliament meets UNICEF country representative
    23.10.2014 22:19
    http://www.topnews.az/images/logo.png
    http://www.topnews.az/images/logo.png
    Baku, October 23 AzerTAc

    Deputy Speaker of the Azerbaijani Parliament Bahar Muradova has met UNICEF Representative in the country Andro Shilakadze.

    They exchanged views over the establishment of a resource centre on children`s rights at the Parliament, and discussed cooperation prospects.

    Ms. Muradova highlighted Azerbaijan`s relations with international organizations, saying "UNICEF has a special place among these organizations".

    The Deputy Speaker praised cooperation with the UNICEF on the parliamentary level.

    They discussed what has been done in Azerbaijan to strengthen the protection of human rights on the initiative of first lady Mehriban Aliyeva.

    Mr. Shilakadze hailed Azerbaijan`s development, adding UNICEF was ready to contribute to this development.
    10
  • Zuckerberg wages China charm offensive
    23.10.2014 22:09
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439030.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439030.jpg
    Facebook is blocked in China, but its co-founder Mark Zuckerberg appears determined to win over hearts and minds in Beijing -- surprising a hall full of students by conducting a Qamp;A session in Mandarin.

    Zuckerberg charmed his audience comprising Chinese and international students when he kicked off the half-hour session at the elite Tsinghua University with the words "Hello, everyone" in heavily-accented Chinese.

    The 30-year-old head of the US-based networking site elicited cheers and applause from the shocked crowd, a video of the event he posted Thursday showed.

    Zuckerberg discussed topics including his philosophy on founding a company and his view of Chinese innovation, as well as more personal matters such as his favourite colour, favourite Chinese dish and the Chinese-American family of his wife, Priscilla Chan.

    "I want to study Chinese culture," he said. "Studying the language helps me study the culture. So, Iв'm trying to learn the language. Also, I like a challenge."

    Facebook has been inaccessible in mainland China since 2009, one of several major global social media sites including Twitter, YouTube and Instagram that have been blacklisted by the ruling Communist Party, which keeps a tight rein on freedom of expression.
    7
  • Governors of Azerbaijani districts visit Republic of Korea
    23.10.2014 22:00
    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/14140834022453011393_600x400.jpg
    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/14140834022453011393_600x400.jpg
    Seoul, October 23 AzerTAc

    Heads of executive authorities of Azerbaijani districts have visited the Republic of Korea.

    The visit aimed to learn local governance system in the Republic of Korea and strengthen the bilateral region-to-region cooperation.

    The delegation met mayors of Seoul, Busan, Daegu to discuss cooperation prospects.

    The Azerbaijani delegation also visited historical monuments, museums, social infrastructure facilities and industrial complexes in Korean districts.
    6
  • Chairman of Nakhchivan`s Supreme Majlis meets governor of West Azerbaijan Province of Iran
    23.10.2014 21:54
    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/1414083048210131348_600x400.jpg
    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/1414083048210131348_600x400.jpg
    Nakhchivan, October 23, AzerTAc

    Chairman of the Supreme Majlis of the Autonomous Republic of Nakhchivan Vasif Talibov has met governor of the West Azerbaijan Province of Iran Gurbanali Saadat.

    Mr. Talibov hailed relations of Azerbaijan`s Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic with neighboring provinces in Iran. "Nakhchivan`s relations with the East and West Azerbaijan provinces, which were established after national leader Heydar Aliyev`s visit to Urmia in 1992 as the head of the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic, have successfully developed ever since." He praised bilateral cultural, educational, economic, agricultural and trade relations.

    Mr. Talibov recalled his visit to the West Azerbaijan Province in 2011, saying the trip saw the signing of a memorandum of cooperation between Nakhchivan and the West Azerbaijan Province in the fields of economy and culture.

    Mr. Saadat recalled his previous visits to Nakhchivan and meetings with national leader Heydar Aliyev. He hailed Nakhchivan`s socio-economic development, noting the West Azerbaijan Province pays special attention to developing relations with the autonomous republic.
    4
  • Azerbaijani Justice Minister meets CoE Commissioner for Human Rights
    23.10.2014 21:49
    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/141408274651619854_600x400.jpg
    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/141408274651619854_600x400.jpg
    Baku, October 23, AzerTAc

    Azerbaijan's Minister of Justice Fikrat Mammadov has met Nils MuiЕѕnieks, Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights.

    They hailed cooperation between the Ministry and the organization, and stressed the importance of an international conference on the implementation of European Convention on Human Rights to be held in Baku.

    They discussed the protection of human rights, development of judicial system, and improvement of civil society.
    8
  • Armenian boxer refuses to fight against Azerbaijani opponent
    23.10.2014 21:49
    http://www.topnews.az/images/logo.png
    http://www.topnews.az/images/logo.png
    Baku, October 23, AzerTAc

    Armenian boxer Gnel Muradian has refused to fight against Azerbaijan`s Mahammadali Tahirov in the men`s 91kg quarter final in the European championship in Zagreb, Croatia.

    He will take on German Peter Kaduri in semifinal.

    In this round, Azerbaijan`s Masud Yusifzade beat Georgian Gaik Pozayan in the 52 kg class. He will face Bulgarian Daniel Asenov in semifinal.
    5
  • EU Special Representative says settlement of Karabakh problem is very important for EU
    23.10.2014 21:44
    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/14140825246463728204_600x400.JPG
    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/14140825246463728204_600x400.JPG
    Baku, October 23, AzerTAc

    EU Special Representative for the South Caucasus Herbert Salber has said the organization attaches a particular importance to finding a solution to the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

    "Settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is very important for the European Union," Mr. Salber told chairman of "Azerbaijani Community of Nagorno-Karabakh" Public Union Bayram Safarov.

    He said the EU backs soonest and peaceful settlement of the dispute

    Mr. Safarov expressed regret that "international organizations took a double standard approach to the problem of Azerbaijan".

    "Unfortunately, the organizations which have to demonstrate a resolute position on the settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict still remain committed to their double standards," he noted.

    Mr. Safarov said the conflict must be settled only in compliance with international legal norms and within Azerbaijan`s territorial integrity.

    "So we are waiting for both the European Union and other international organizations to show resoluteness. Azerbaijan supports peace and we want peace in Azerbaijan, in the South Caucasus and in the whole world."

    He also stressed the need for close involvement of the European Union in the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. "Building a EU-supported dialogue between the communities, ensuring active participation of the parties in programs and projects of the organization is important in terms of solving the conflict," Mr. Safarov added.
    10
  • Sting and his 'The Last Ship' star go home
    23.10.2014 21:43
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439029.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439029.jpg
    The actors in Sting's musical "The Last Ship" have plenty of pressure these days. The show is making its Broadway debut. There are last-minute changes. And Sting is pacing in the darkness.

    "I'm at the back there every night, mouthing every syllable, which is an extra burden the poor things have," says the Grammy Award-winner at the Neil Simon Theatre. "They know I'm listening."

    Hearing this, one of the stars, Rachel Tucker, nods and laughs. "It's true," she says. "He'll be, 'Where was the 't' in 'light?'"

    Sting's tremendous skills as a songwriter '" not to mention his perfectionist streak '" are both being tested with "The Last Ship," which opens Sunday.

    The show marks his maiden voyage into composing musical theater and Sting seems tired, but game. Sitting beside Tucker in the theater's empty seats before a recent preview, he could see the finish line.

    "It began as my dream and then became everybody's," he says. His lovely, powerfully voiced co-star mouths a "thank you" and bows in his direction.
    4
  • Picasso museum reopens after controversial renovation
    23.10.2014 21:03
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439004.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439004.jpg
    A top-level sacking, harsh words from the artist's son, delays and a huge budget overrun -- Paris's Picasso museum reopens its doors on Saturday amid the fallout from a fraught $71-million renovation.

    Just over five years after it closed for what was intended to be a two-year refurbishment, the museum -- housed in a 17th-century baroque mansion in Paris's historic Marais quarter -- has been extensively modernised and is more than twice its previous size.

    Costs, however, stand at 22 million euros ($27 million) over budget due to an increase in the scope of the works, a rift has opened up between Picasso's son Claude and the French government and the museum's director of nearly a decade, Anne Baldassari, no longer has her job.

    The gallery, which first opened in 1985, boasts one of the world's most extensive collections of Picasso's work with around 5,000 paintings, drawings, sculptures, ceramics, photographs and documents.

    Most of the exhibits were left to the French state on his death in 1973, the artist having spent most of his life in France.

    Others were donated by his family including his widow Jacqueline.

    According to new director Laurent Le Bon, the expansion -- which has boosted the museum's exhibition space to 3,800 square metres (41,000 square feet) -- will allow it to display far more of its collection, only a fraction of which was previously displayed due to lack of space.
    10
  • US congressman calls on Barack Obama to support Azerbaijan
    23.10.2014 20:54
    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/14140794325811656849_600x400.jpg
    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/14140794325811656849_600x400.jpg
    Washington, October 23, AzerTAc.

    Paul Gosar, Congressman from Arizona, has addressed a letter to President Barack Obama calling on the U.S. government to support Azerbaijan.

    The congressman said Azerbaijan is a reliable ally and important strategic partner of the USA, adding the country remains committed to its partnership with Washington despite being located in a volatile region. He hailed Azerbaijan`s contribution to combating international terrorism, restoring stability in Iraq and Afghanistan and ensuring Europe`s energy security.

    The congressman noted that Azerbaijan effectively used its oil revenues to rebuild its economy, reduce poverty from 50 to 6%, increase GDP and become an important trade partner of the USA in the South Caucasus.

    Congressman Gosar also praised the traditions of tolerance in the country.
    10
  • Colossal volcanic eruption could destroy Japan STUDY
    23.10.2014 20:43
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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438990.jpg
    Japan could be nearly destroyed by a massive volcanic eruption over the next century, putting almost all of the country's 127 million-strong population at risk, according to a new study.

    "It is not an overstatement to say that a colossal volcanic eruption would leave Japan extinct as a country," Kobe University earth sciences professor Yoshiyuki Tatsumi and associate professor Keiko Suzuki said in a study publicly released on Wednesday.

    The experts said they analysed the scale and frequency of volcanic eruptions in the archipelago nation over the past 120,000 years and calculated that the odds of a devastating eruption at about one percent over the next 100 years.

    The chance of a major earthquake striking the city of Kobe within 30 years was estimated at about one percent just a day before a 7.2-magnitude quake destroyed the Japanese port city in 1995, killing 6,400 people and injuring nearly 4,400 others, the study noted.

    "Therefore, it would be no surprise if such a colossal eruption occurs at any moment," it added.

    The new research comes weeks after Japan's Mount Ontake erupted without warning -- killing 57 people and leaving at least six others missing in the country's deadliest volcanic eruption in almost 90 years.

    The Kobe University researchers said their study was critical because Japan is home to about seven percent of the volcanoes that have erupted over the past 10,000 years.

    A disaster on the southernmost main island of Kyushu, which has been struck by seven massive eruptions over the past 120,000 years, would see an area with seven million people buried by flows of lava and molten rock in just two hours, they said.

    Volcanic ash would also be carried by westerly winds toward the main island of Honshu, making almost all of the country "unliveable" as it strangled infrastructure, including key transport systems, they said.

    It would be "hopeless" trying to save about 120 million living in major cities and towns across Honshu, the study said.

    This prediction was based on geological findings from the eruption of a gigantic crater, 23 kilometres (14 miles) across, in southern Kyushu about 28,000 years ago.

    The study called for new technology to accurately grasp the state of "magma reservoirs" which are spread across the earth's crust in layers a few kilometres deep.
    13
  • Putin signs law delaying deadline for Visa, MasterCard security deposits
    23.10.2014 20:09
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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438999.jpg
    Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law on Thursday delaying the deadline for security deposit payments by Visa, MasterCard and other international card systems.

    The document, which was approved by both houses of Russiaв's parliament, was published on the governmentв's legal information web portal on Thursday.

    Deputy Chairman of the Budget and Financial Market Committee at the Federation Council (the upper house of Russiaв's parliament) Nikolay Zhuravlyov earlier said the law would extend the deadline for calculating and paying security deposits to the first and second quarters of 2015.

    The senator said the delay in security deposit payments was needed for a transitional period to transfer international payment card processing to the operational center and the payment clearing center based on Russiaв's national payment card system.

    Visa and MasterCard earlier stopped servicing cards of some Russian banks hit by US sanctions. Russiaв's parliament passed a law on establishing a national payment card system, obliging international payment operators to pay security deposits totaling their two-day turnover.

    Russian Central Bank Deputy Chairwoman Tatiana Chugunova said earlier the international payment operatorsв' security deposits amounted to $200-300 million per quarter.

    The international payment systems Amex, JCB, MasterCard and Visa said they are ready to operate in Russia through the national payment card processing center.
    16
  • Polish Foreign Ministry welcomes Azerbaijani President`s amnesty order
    23.10.2014 19:54
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    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/141407573822344197_600x400.jpg
    London, October 23, AzerTAc

    The Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs has said it welcomes a recent decree by Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev to pardon a group of convicts.

    In an official statement, the Ministry said it welcomes information about an amnesty granted by President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev on 17 October and the pardoning of 80 or so people.

    "This act of pardon is a step in the right direction and an important signal for Azerbaijan's civil society and the international community," the Ministry said.

    Orkhan Ismayilov

    Special Correspondent
    7
  • US-led air strikes in Syria 'kill 553 in first month'
    23.10.2014 19:53
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    Air strikes by the US-led coalition in Syria have killed 553 people since their launch a month ago, the vast majority of them jihadists, a monitoring group said on Thursday.

    The strikes have killed 464 Islamic State group fighters, 57 militants from Al-Qaeda affiliate al-Nusra Front and 32 civilians, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

    Among the civilians killed were six children and five women, said the Observatory, which relies on a wide network of sources inside Syria.

    The US-led coalition against the Islamic State launched air strikes against IS on September 23, expanding a previous aerial campaign launched against the group in Iraq in August.

    Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman told AFP the "vast majority" of jihadists killed in the strikes were not Syrians but foreign fighters who had joined IS and Nusra in the country.
    6
  • Google Streetview gives glimpse of the world of Jane Goodall's chimpanzees
    23.10.2014 19:30
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    Chimpanzees and their remote forest home in Tanzania have joined camels in the Abu Dhabi desert and the wildlife of the Galapagos islands on the list of things you can see on Google Streetview.

    A team spent nine days with backpack-mounted cameras mapping Gombe national park, where primatologist Jane Goodall made her ground-breaking discovery over 50 years ago of chimps not just using but making tools.

    The resulting 360-degree images show chimps riding on their motherв's back, park rangers taking measurements and the spectacular view from 'the peakв' '" reportedly Goodallв's favourite spot in the park, which sits next to Lake Tanganyika.

    Bill Wallauer, a wildlife videographer for the Jane Goodall Institute who wore the camera equipment, said: ''If you were shipwrecked and you washed up on shore, this is the paradise you would want to land in.''

    ''You just lose the rest of the world. You donв't hear the news, you donв't hear whatв's going on,'' he told the Smithsonian magazine, which reported the team facing ''poisonous snakes, killer bees and army ants.''

    Separately, a new study has reported chimps being caught red-handed carrying out night-time raids on farms in Uganda.

    The researchers, whose work is published in the journal Plos One, used camera traps in Sebitoli in the northern part of Kibale national park to film chimpanzees emerging from their forest home to take maize from farmland.

    The chimps, whose forest has suffered logging and who have been subjected to snares as a result of previous agricultural losses, surprised the research team by using nocturnal raids to avoid human guards and by doing so in larger-than-expected groups, including mothers with infants clinging to them.

    They ''presented few signs of vigilance and anxiety during these nocturnal crop-raids'', the authors note, despite some being chased by dogs. About 40% of the estimated 80 chimps in the area had limb mutilations which the researchers said were likely due to the use of snares.
    10
  • Bas-relief to chairman of ADR parliament Alimardan bey Topchubashov inaugurated in Poznan
    23.10.2014 18:59
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    http://azertag.az//files/galleryphoto/2014/3/600x400/141407243854133682_600x400.jpg
    Baku, October 23, AzerTAc

    A bas-relief to former Polish Prime Minister Ignacy Jan Paderewski and speaker of the Parliament of Azerbaijan Democratic Republic (ADR) Alimardan bey Topchubashov has been inaugurated at the Academy of Music in Poznan, Poland.

    Speaking to the ceremony, rector of the Academy Halina Lorkowska highlighted the life and activities of Ignacy Jan Paderewski and Alimardan bey Topchubashov.

    Azerbaijani Ambassador Hasan Hasanov hailed Azerbaijani-Polish relations. The diplomat said the opening of the bas-relief demonstrates that "the Azerbaijani people do not forget their friends".

    Ambassador Hasanov and rector Lorkowska cut the ribbon symbolizing the opening of the bas-relief.

    The ceremony ended with a concert program.
    6
  • Azerbaijan joins ministerial meeting of BSEC member states
    23.10.2014 18:54
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    http://www.topnews.az/images/logo.png
    Baku, October 23 AzerTAc

    Azerbaijani Deputy Minister of Culture and Tourism Nazim Samadov has attended a ministerial meeting of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization (BSEC) Member States in Athens, Greece.

    The meeting will feature discussions on resolutions, decisions and recommendations for increasing the efficiency of the organization`s work. It will also see the adoption of a declaration and minutes of the meeting by tourism ministers of the BSEC member states.
    6
  • Apple warns of iCloud security risk
    23.10.2014 18:49
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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439020.jpg
    Apple has issued a new security warning for users of its iCloud online storage service amid reports of a concerted effort to steal passwords and other data from people who use the service in China.

    ''Weв're aware of intermittent organized network attacks using insecure certificates to obtain user information, and we take this very seriously,'' the company on Tuesday said in a statement on its support website, adding that its own servers had not been compromised.

    Several news outlets reported on Tuesday that some Chinese Internet users saw warnings indicating they had been diverted to an unauthorized website when trying to sign into their iCloud accounts.

    Such a diversion, known to computer security experts as a ''man in the middle'' attack, could allow a third party to copy and steal the passwords that users enter when they think they are signing into Appleв's service.

    Hackers could then use the information to collect other data from usersв' accounts.

    Appleв's newest smartphone models, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, launched in Chinaв's mainland last week, have software with enhanced encryption features to protect usersв' data.

    The tech giant, which is based in California, United States, said in its statement that the attacks have not affected users who sign into iCloud from their iPhones or iPads, or from Mac computers while using the latest operating system and Appleв's Safari browser.

    However, it suggested users verify they are connected to a legitimate iCloud server by using the security features built into Safari and other browsers such as Firefox and Chrome. These browsers show users a warning message when they are connecting to a site that doesnв't have a digital certificate verifying it is authentic.
    9
  • Azerbaijan`s Deputy PM meets IOM Regional Director
    23.10.2014 18:30
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    Baku, October 23, AzerTAc

    Azerbaijani Deputy Prime Minister, chairman of the State Committee for Refugees and IDPs Affairs, chairman of the Commission for International Humanitarian Assistance Ali Hasanov has met Regional Director of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) for South-Eastern Europe, Eastern Europe and Central Asia Renate Held.

    They discussed the work carried out under projects of IOM Azerbaijan Office, and the ways of developing the bilateral cooperation in the field of migration.

    Mr. Hasanov said the Azerbaijani government attaches special importance to its relationship with IOM.

    "Azerbaijan benefited from the experience of IOM to build a national legal framework for solving the migration problem after restoring its independence. The Azerbaijani government is interested in developing the cooperation with IOM."

    He also highlighted the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, and the problems of more than a million refugees and IDPs. "The fact that the resolutions adopted by leading international organizations urging the settlement of the conflict still remain unfulfilled demonstrates a double standard and undemocratic approach by international powers," he said.

    Ms. Held said Azerbaijan has achieved considerable success despite the occupation of 20 percent of its lands and the existence of more than a million refugees and IDPs.

    She said IOM puts special emphasis on its cooperation with Azerbaijan.
    9
  • AIDA, IOM to implement joint projects in African countries
    23.10.2014 18:28
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134205.jpg
    Ashraf Shikhaliyev, the Director of Azerbaijan International Development Agency (AIDA) under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Azerbaijani Republic has met with the delegation of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), said the Foreign Ministry, APA reports.

    Renate Held, Regional Director of the IOM Regional Office for South-Eastern Europe,

    Eastern Europe and Central Asia and acting Head of IOM Baku Office Serhan Aktoprak attended the meeting.

    During the meeting, Shikhaliyev informed the guests about the activities of AIDA and projects carried out around the world. The sides discussed the possibility of implementation of joint projects in the African countries and exchanged views on further cooperation.
    7
  • Sharapova blows chance at year-end number one
    23.10.2014 18:18
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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439014.jpg
    Maria Sharapova's hopes of becoming the year-end world number one went up in smoke Tuesday when she crashed in straight sets to Petra Kvitova at the WTA Finals in Singapore.

    The Russian superstar needed a win to have any chance of overtaking top-ranked Serena Williams but she blew up in spectacular fashion as Kvitova won 6-3, 6-2 in 75 minutes.

    It was the second upset in quick succession at the season finale after Simona Halep stunned Williams 6-0, 6-2 on Wednesday, the 18-time Grand Slam-winner's worst defeat in 16 years.

    Kvitova's first win over Sharapova since 2011 also left the Russian's bid for a second year-end title -- a decade after the first -- hanging by a thread after her opening defeat to Caroline Wozniacki.

    Earlier, Wozniacki beat Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland 7-5, 6-3 to take top position in the White Group round robin as the resurgent Dane neared a spot in the semi-finals.

    Sharapova won the first two games against Kvitova but then went to pieces as the Wimbledon champion won the next five straight and took the first set 6-3.

    Another run of five games put Kvitova on the verge of victory before Sharapova finally earned a break of her own, and then saved two match points as she clung on in a 10-minute hold of serve at 5-1 down.

    However, her resistance was broken when on the third match point, Kvitova blasted a magical looping forehand which landed on the baseline and beyond the crestfallen Russian.

    Wozniacki took more than three hours to beat Sharapova on Tuesday and another long match looked likely when she fought with Radwanska in a tight opening set which featured five breaks of serve.

    But the super-fit former world number one, who is training for the New York marathon, raced through the second set to step towards her first semi-final at the year-ender since 2009.

    "I knew from the start that this wasn't going to be an easy match," Wozniacki said.

    "I came out there a little bit nervous, but you know, I just did my best out there," added the world number eight.
    8
  • Armenia, one of main accomplices of separatism in world
    23.10.2014 18:18
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    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic137179.jpg
    By Elmira Tariverdiyeva

    Armenia made another action, describing the support for separatism in a global sense. As it is known, the Crimea is part of Ukraine, which illegally joined Russia in March 2014, was another region, recognized by almost no one in the world.

    Almost all aircraft flying to the Crimea belong to Russia's airlines and make flights between the cities of this country and the breakaway region.However, as it is known, "Grozny Avia" airline plans to initiate Simferopol-Yerevan flights from Nov. 16. This will be the second international flight from the Simferopol airport opened after the Crimea joined Russia. However, the first flight was a charter flight from Simferopol to Istanbul, rather than a regular Simferopol-Yerevan flight to be initiated soon.As it is known, Ukrainian airlines stopped flying to the Crimea after its joining Russia in March 2014. At the same time, Ukraine urged the International Civil Aviation Organization (?CAO) to condemn the violation of the Crimea's airspace by the Russian aircraft. Thus, in connection with the Crimea's events, Ukraine as a country with the airport of Simferopol on its territory, notified all countries and international organizations, including Russia, about closing the airport.Therefore, flights to an unrecognized region are considered illegitimate and regarded as the violation of Ukraine's airspace.By agreeing to open a direct air service between Simferopol and Yerevan, Armenia, which has single-handedly supported separatism in Azerbaijan's Nagorno-Karabakh region for many years, openly violated the international law again. However, it is not surprising for the country which has occupied foreign lands for over 20 years.Armenia's position on the Crimean issue became apparent after its ill-fated voting against the resolution on Ukraine at the meeting of UN General Assembly. That time, with overwhelming majority of votes, the UN General Assembly passed the resolution declaring the invalidity of the March 16 referendum on Crimea's joining Russia.This is while Russia's long-standing ally Belarus, which voted for the resolution, didn't violate the international law and cancelled the summer flights of its Belavia Airlines to Crimea. And it is quite clear, since ICAO prohibits passenger aircraft to carry out flights to the airports of unrecognized republics and unrecognized territories.Therefore, Belarus decided to comply with the international law by canceling the flights as distinct from Armenia which wastes no effort to support separatism in its purest form in various regions of the world as many years before.

    6
  • Lavrov uninterested in Westв's opinion
    23.10.2014 18:18
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134204.jpg
    Lavrov is uninterested in Westв's opinion.

    "I'm not interested in the West's opinion about this and am equally not interested in its opinion in regard to other domestic issues within the Russian Federation".

    The statement was made by Russian Foreign Minister on the sidelines of the Valdai discussion forum in response to the question of whether the West would continue to insist on Russia returning the Crimean Peninsula to Ukraine, APA reports citing RIA Novosti.
    8
  • President Ilham Aliyev hold meetings
    23.10.2014 17:58
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    President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has received the credentials of the newly-appointed Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Serbia Nebojsa Rodic.Ambassador Nebojsa Rodic reviewed the guard of honor.The diplomat handed his credentials to President Ilham Aliyev.The Azerbaijani President had a conversation with the Ambassador.The parties expressed satisfaction with the current state of bilateral relations between Azerbaijan and Serbia, and noted that there was good potential for the expansion of cooperation in various areas.Ambassador Nebojsa Rodic said he would spare no efforts towards developing the ties between the two countries.

    ***

    President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has received President of the European Shooting Confederation and Shooting Union of the Russian Federation Vladimir Lisin.It was noted that high-standard infrastructure for various sports, including shooting sports was built in Azerbaijan. The importance of Azerbaijan`s hosting high-profile international tournaments, particularly ongoing world shooting sports cup final was emphasized.The parties discussed the issues related to the 2015 European Games. It was noted that high-level preparations were well underway for the European shooting sports championship to take place in Azerbaijan in 2017.

    13
  • Boeing sells first plane parts to Iran after 35 years
    23.10.2014 17:49
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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_439008.jpg
    U.S. aerospace giantBoeinghas sold airplane parts to Iran Air, national flag carrier of Iran,for the first time since the 1979 hostage crisis between Iran and the US, the company affirmed, SIA reports quoting the AA.

    "During the third quarter of 2014, we sold aircraft manuals, drawings, and navigation charts and data to Iran Air," Boeingв's quarterly report stated.

    The company alsostated in the report that it generated approximately $120,000 in gross revenues and $12 thousand net profits during the third quarter from the deal to Iran.

    Iran has an aging fleet of U.S.-made Boeings purchased before the 1979 Islamic revolution.The country used to buy passenger planes from the U.S. and Europe before the revolution, but this process came to an end after sanctions were imposed on its aviation industry in 1979.

    In April of this year, the US government issued a license allowing Boeing to provide aircraft spare parts that are for safety purposes to Iran. Boeing is still not allowed to sell new planes to Iran.

    The companysaid the parts were purchased "consistent with guidance from the US government in connection with ongoing negotiations between the ''P5 1 nations''-'" the U.S., Britain, China, Russia,Franceand Germany'" and Iran related to, among other things, the safety of Iranв's civil aviation industry."

    Thecompany added thatit may engage in additional sales to Iran in the future.

    In November 1979, months after the establishment of the Islamic republic, Iranian students stormed the US embassy in Tehran and took 52 diplomats hostage andheld them captive for 444 days. After theincident US applied tough sanctions to Iran and lasting until today.

    Talks between Iran and the P5 1 have led to a deal calling for Tehran to scale back its nuclear activities in exchange for the easing of economic sanctions. The talks have been running since last November.

    World powers suspect Iran has not been honest about its nuclear programme and is seeking the ability to build a nuclear bomb.

    Iran says it has the right to nuclear energy - and stresses that its nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes only.
    8
  • Azeri Defence Minister meets Spanish Charge d`Affaires
    23.10.2014 17:25
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    Baku, October 23, AzerTAc

    Azerbaijan`s Minister of Defence Zakir Hasanov has met Spanish Charge d`Affaires to Azerbaijan Jose Luis Diez Juarez.

    Hasanov highlighted the military and political situation in the region, and the history of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

    The Minister said Azerbaijan and Spain were cooperating both in a bilateral format and based on NATO programs.

    He stressed the importance of strengthening efforts towards expanding the bilateral ties.
    13
  • Gabala hosting 2014 ISSF World Cup final
    23.10.2014 17:14
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    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic137177.jpg
    /AzerNews/

    By Nigar Orujova

    Azerbaijani northern city of Gabala is hosting the 2014 International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup final.

    The opening ceremony was held with the participation of Tale Heydarov, President of Gabala Sports Club, Chingiz Huseynzade, Vice President of the National Olympic Committee, Ismayil Ismayilov, Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports, and Franz Schreiber, ISSF Secretary General on October 22.

    During the ceremony, they spoke about the works done in Azerbaijan to strengthen the material and technical base of the sports and the successes achieved in this field. They also wished bright victories for the competitors.

    The ISSF World Cup consists of seven rounds. Earlier rounds were held during in the U.S., Germany, Spain, Slovenia, and Kazakhstan. Through these landmark events, the shooters fought for the right to participate in the final stage of the World Cup 2014 in Gabala.

    The ISSF World Cup Final is the most important sport event after the World Cup and Europe Cup. The competition will be broadcasted by the official channel of the ISSF on October 23-27.

    The final tournament is co-organized by Gabala Shooting Club, National Shooting Federation and supported by the National Olympic Committee, Youth and Sports Ministry and the International Shooting Sport Federation.

    The competition started with the women's 10m air rifle final, and will close with the men's skeet on October 27.

    About 280 of best shooters of the world will compete for the main title in the Olympic disciplines of the pistol and shotgun shooting.

    Azerbaijan will be represent by Nurlana Jafarova, Emin Jafarov in shotgun shooting, and Irada Ashumova, Ruslan Lunev in pistol shooting.

    During the tournament, the shooting club will host some 500 representatives of sports delegations from 40 countries, including President of ISSF Olegario Vazquez Rana, President of the European Confederation Vladimir Lisin.

    Earlier, Gabala Shooting Club hosted the International Grand Prix Shotgun. The club will also host World Cup in 2015, where the Olympic licenses will be issued.

    Featuring all of the 15 Olympic shooting events, the ISSF WCF takes place every year as a conclusion to the season's World Cup Series, which works as a qualifying round.

    The first eight athletes in each event at the ISSF World Cup Series will enter the WCF with a maximum of two athletes from each nation for each event. Title Defenders, Olympic and World Championship medalists are also taking part in the competition.
    24
  • Baby killed in suspected terror attack in Jerusalem
    23.10.2014 17:14
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    A three-month old baby was killed in Jerusalem and eight other people wounded '" one seriously '" in what Israel police described as a ''terrorist attack'' when a speeding car drove onto a pavement crowded with pedestrians alighting from the cityв's light railway.

    The child killed in the attack was later named as Chaya Zissel Braun, a US citizen, whose family had been visiting the Western Wall.

    Video footage posted on social media showed a car on the main road slowing slightly before crossing to the train tracks and climbing on to the station pavement, ploughing through the people standing on it.

    The incident occurred on Wednesday evening at about 6pm on Road 1 '" one of Jerusalemв's main arterial roads '" as passengers were getting off one of the cityв's light railway trains at a stop on Ammunition Hill near the national police headquarters.

    A paramedic who was at the scene said he treated the babyв's mother for a serious head wound and that the car had hit the babyв's stroller.

    The driver of the car, a 20-year-old resident of Silwan in East Jerusalem named as Abed a-Rahman a-Shaludi, was shot by police officers as he apparently attempted to flee the scene. He died a few hours later.

    Although Shaludiв's family told journalists later that the incident had been an accident, Israeli officials said he was a former Palestinian prisoner and ''a member of Hamas'' who had served several prison sentences including for preparing petrol bombs.

    Silwan, a neighbourhood bordering on Jerusalemв's old walled city, has been a focal point of violence in past weeks with Palestinians protesting against Israeli settlers moving into houses in the predominantly Palestinian-populated district.
    12
  • Photographв's portraits of dogs on the day they were put down are utterly heartbreaking PHOTO
    23.10.2014 17:10
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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438965.jpg
    This series of stunning portraits by Taiwanese photographer Yun-Fei Tou brings the tragic reality of dog euthanasia into sharp focus.

    The images were all taken in public pounds, and as well as taking their photo, Yun-Fei also spends time feeding, playing and comforting the dogs in their final hours.

    Yun-Fei told us that although volunteers try their best to re-home stray dogs, over 80, 000 animals are euthanized in Taiwan each year, he explained: 'The truth is, Taiwan is a small country and the number of animals in public shelters are just far too great.в'

    The project is named Memento Mori, a Latin phrase meaning 'remember you must dieв', and Yun-Fei Tou told Metro.co.uk: "I hope when viewing these images, the viewers also reflect upon themselves and their own deaths".

    05:01am, Taiwanese Public Shelter, Time until Euthanized: 12.5 Hours

    03:17am, Taiwanese Public Shelter, Time until Euthanized: 14.2 Hours

    01:49am, Taiwanese Public Shelter, Time until Euthanized: 15.7 Hours

    11:58am, Taiwanese Public Shelter, Time until Euthanized: 2 Minutes

    11:38am, Taiwanese Public Shelter, Time until Euthanized: 29 Minutes

    04:17am, Taiwanese Public Shelter, Time until Euthanized: 13.2 Hours

    10:54pm, Taiwanese Public Shelter, Time until Euthanized: 1.2 Hours

    12:09pm, Taiwanese Public Shelter, Time until Euthanized: 1.9 Hours

    11:44pm, Taiwanese Public Shelter, Time until Euthanized: 40 Minutes

    2:57pm, Taiwanese Public Shelter, Time until Euthanized: 1.1 Hours
    16
  • Assistant Secretary-General hails Azerbaijan`s cooperation with UN
    23.10.2014 17:10
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    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438967.jpg
    Lakshmi Puri, Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations, has praised Azerbaijan`s cooperation with the UN and its subordinate agencies.

    ''Azerbaijan demonstrates a single strategic approach to such issues as the impact of globalization on regional integration, E-governance, democracy, liberalization and other processes,'' Ms. Puri, who is also Deputy Executive Director of UN Women, the United

    Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women, told AzerTAc`s correspondent.

    She attended the 5th International Conference on the Role of Women in the Development of the OIC Member States in Baku.

    Ms. Puri stressed the importance of increasing the quality of education and healthcare services in counties with rapidly developing economy like Azerbaijan. She hailed what Azerbaijan has achieved in solving social problems as ''substantial progress''.

    Ms. Puri also praised the Baku conference, saying it is of profound importance in terms of discussing ways of preventing violence against women and ensuring the protection of their rights and freedoms.
    11
  • Railway Transport Council of CIS and Baltic States signs Protocol of 61st meeting
    23.10.2014 17:04
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    Baku, October 23, AzerTAc

    The 61st meeting of the Railway Transport Council of CIS and Baltic States has culminated in Baku with the signing of the Protocol.

    The 2-day meeting saw participants review the implementation of the decisions adopted at the 60th meeting and work of the railway network in 9 months of the year, and discuss the traffic schedule of trains in 2015-2016.

    Following the meeting, chairman of the Azerbaijan Railways Arif Asgarov and president of the Russian Railways Vladimir Yakunin gave a press conference.

    The meeting was attended by delegates from Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Ukraine, Moldova, Bulgaria, Finland and Estonia.
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  • Ancient Egyptian sarcophagus discovered in Essex living room
    23.10.2014 16:59
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438960.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438960.jpg
    An ancient Egyptiansarcophagus has been discovered sitting in a living room in Essex.

    Experts fromReeman Dansie Auctioneers stumbled acrossthe incredible find after asking to look around an elderly womanв's house when she moved to a nursing home.

    Rather than a few bits of jewellery, they found the 3,000-year-old coffin, which they believe was once the final resting place for a noblewoman.

    Mr Stacey, the valuer for Colchester-based auctioneer Reeman Dansie, was the first to find thesarcophagus.

    'The hairs went up on the back of my neck when I walked into the room,в' he said.

    The antiquesspecialist also said it was 'certainly the oldest item I have been asked to look at in my careerв'.

    It is thought that the elderly woman bought the item when a local museum closed down, and experts at the auction house believe the coffin made its way to the UK during the Napoleonic wars in the 19th century.

    James Grinter, the auction houseв's managing director, said: 'It was very common for people to collect ancient Egyptian objects then.в'

    'Itв's quite an eerie thing but absolutely stunning '" it takes your breath away,в' he added.

    The sarcophagus has an estimated value of ВЈ6,000, but at auction could go for much more than this.
    8
  • Mubariz Gurbanli: We will never allow radical trends to spread in Azerbaijan
    23.10.2014 16:53
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438958.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438958.jpg
    ''We will never allow radical trends to spread in Azerbaijan.'' SIA reports that Chairman of the State Committee for Work with Religious Organizations Mubariz Gurbanli told this.

    ''Forces that do not want Islam to spread are trying to prevent the spread of the true essence of the religion by various means. Today, Muslims are accused of every bloody incident around the world. 60 percent of the conflicts around the world occur in Muslim countries. Some forces want to destroy Islam by creating radical groups and new currents in Islamic countries. They are against both Shiism and Sunnism and Islam in the whole.'' stressed Mubariz Gurbanli.

    M. Gurbanli as well noted that we should oppose such kind of radicalism in Azerbaijan: ''We should shed blood only for our occupied lands.

    Touching upon the beginning of the month of Muharram and the celebration of Ashura, the chairman said that the Islamic world disliked persons taking up arms against the grandson of the Prophet of Islam (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon Him), Imam Hussain: ''Those persons, for example Muawiyah, are out of the values of Islam, but the Karbala martyrs are. We should remember the Karabakh war in Azerbaijan and our martyrs while commemorating the martyrdom in Karbala. Religious figures should no way turn emotional when speaking about the month of Muharram and Ashura for relying on emotions is unacceptable in Islam.''
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  • Violation against women in Armenia on rise
    23.10.2014 16:53
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic137176.jpg
    http://www.today.az/pictures/pic137176.jpg
    /AzerNews/

    By Mushvig Mehdiyev

    Violation against women is on the rise in Armenia, where two women were abducted last week.

    Two men kidnapped and held a woman hostage in the rural village of Harberd. They demanded a ransom in exchange for the release of the woman. The ransom was denied and the two abductors made off with about $1,220. They later released the woman.

    The abduction in Harberd was the second incident after the kidnapping of a 15-year old girl. The victim girl claimed that she was taken away by her brother's friend who threatened to kill her, and even threatened her father. The girl was later released.

    Police has arrested the culprits of the first incident, while the offenders of the second event are still at large.

    Women in the former Soviet country have long suffered from domestic violence. Beatings and even killings of women have become more common according to local media reports.

    The New York-based EurasiaNet.Org reports that about five Armenian women between the ages of 28 and 38 were murdered by their husbands in the first two months of 2014.

    Domestic violence against women is even more prominent in rural areas of the country.

    Advocates for Human Rights reported that a great number of women confessed that they were victims of regular domestic violence. The report also indicated that the government does not support the NGO efforts to help the victims of domestic abuse.

    The statistical data revealed about 258 divorces per 1,000 marriages in Armenia in 2014. Domestic violence and sexual harassment have reportedly viewed among the reasons behind the increasing divorce trend.

    According to the Social Institutions and Gender Index, which measures not only gender gaps but includes captures discriminatory social institutions, such as early marriage, discriminatory inheritance practices, violence against women, son preference, restricted access to public space and restricted access to land and credit, Armenia was ranked 54th among 86 countries in 2012.

    The 2011 UNDP Human Development Index score for Armenia was 0.716, placing it in 86th place out of 187 countries. Moreover, the SIGI index score for the former Soviet nation was 0.343.

    Armenia's World Economic Forum Global Gender Gap Index rating for 2011 was 0.665 to rank it 84th among 135 countries.

    Statistical data show that the current situation of women in the country reflects one of the worst experiences in terms of the domestic violence among the CIS states and in the region.
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  • Defense Minister checks readiness of Navy ships
    23.10.2014 16:47
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    http:// www.news.az/photos/page-photo/134200.jpg
    Zakir Hasanov praised the state of ships and the training of personnel.

    Azerbaijani Defense Minister Zakir Hasanov got acquainted with the state of Navy ships, recently overhauled and equipped with more powerful engines and equipment.

    According to Oxu.Az, the press service of the Defense Ministry reported that the acting Navy Commander Shahin Mammadov reported to the minister about the readiness of vessels and informed about technical and tactical characteristics, equipment, weapons, and so forth., including conditions for personnel service at the level of modern requirements.

    Then renovated ships departed from their places of permanent residence to the open sea. This was followed by training of speacial forces on release of crew hijacked by terrorists.

    Minister Zakir Hasanov praised the state of ships and the training of personnel, gave directions to further improvement of combat readiness and living conditions of the service.
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  • Zelda Williams pays tribute to late father
    23.10.2014 16:27
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438946.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438946.jpg
    Zelda Williams has ensured that her late father Robin Williams remains close by in spirit by getting a tattoo of a hummingbird on her hand, placed above her dadв's birth date, "7.21.51".

    The 25-year-old shared a black-and-white snap of the beautiful fresh ink on her right hand on photo-sharing site Instagram.

    Alongside the touching tribute she wrote: "For poppo. Thank you to the incomparable @dr_woo_ssc for so beautifully bringing my reminders to life. I'll always put my hand out to shake with a smile."

    Zelda, who got the body-art done by famed tattoo artist Dr. Woo at Shamrock Social in Hollywood on Wednesday, went on to express her uncertainty about the future of her Instagram account.

    "As for this Instagram, I don't know in what capacity I'll continue using it in the future, but I'm leaving it up regardless so that fake accounts hoping to use my name or misuse my family's photos will get no traction."

    Robinв's daughter, who he named after a princess in the highly popular Nintendo video game series The Legend Of Zelda, has taken on-off breaks from social media since the death of her father in August. Earlier this month she remembered her beloved dad, who took his own life after an ongoing battle with depression, on World Mental Health Day.

    The actress praised her dad for "openly fighting" with depression and encouraging others to "fight on" against mental illness.

    "Today is #WorldMentalHealthDay," she wrote. "Mental illness is often misunderstood and misrepresented, but that's starting to change. Let's end the stigma.

    "Mental health IS as important as physical health and whether there are visible signs or not, the suffering is real," she added. "It can affect EVERYONE. So please, let's help stop the misconceptions and support those who need our help."

    Zelda went on to say encourage people to seek help for mental ilnesses, saying: "No matter what the misinformed say, you can't simply CHOOSE to make mental illness go away. It is NOT cowardly to suffer or seek help."
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  • Japan minister support staff put sex club on expenses
    23.10.2014 16:18
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438943.jpg
    http://img.sia.az/news/2014/siaphoto_438943.jpg
    Japan's new trade minister has been forced to defend himself after it emerged that staff from his support group spent office money at a sex club.

    Yoichi Miyazawa admitted staff had claimed expenses after visiting a sadomasochistic bar in Hiroshima, but emphasised he did not visit the bar.

    His admission comes at a difficult time for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Two cabinet ministers quit on Monday. Mr Miyazawa replaced Yuko Obuchi, who resigned over a funding scandal.

    Members of Miyazawa-kai, described as a political support group that manages the minister's funds, spent 18,230 yen ($170, ВЈ106) at the club in September 2010.

    The spending was listed as "entertainment expenses" in the group's political fund report for that year.

    "It is true such expenses were made," Mr Miyazawa told reporters. "But I myself did not go there at all. That's true as well."

    He plans to correct the report as a person in his office had "erroneously booked the money".

    The bar stages performances where women dressed only in underwear are tied up with ropes and whipped, reported Japanese media.
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