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Azerbaijani delegation attends International Astronautical Congress
29.09.2013 13:52
An Azerbaijani delegation led by Alchin Shirinzade, Director General of the National Aerospace Agency of theMinistryof Defense Industry, has attended the 64th International Astronautical Congress (IAC)in Beijing, China.

Held in Beijing for the second time and organized jointly by the IAF, the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA) and the International Institute of Space Law (IISL), the eventwas declared open by IAF President Kiyoshi Higuchi.

The event hosted more than 3000 attendees, 180 technical sessions, 8 plenary events, 3 highlight lectures and 3 late breaking News and appearances by elites.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Li Yuanchao, Vice-President of the People's Republic of China, described the Congress as an Olympic-class event for the worldwide aerospace community. He revealed that 74 countries were represented among the 3,359 registered delegates, making it a truly international gathering and the largest of its kind in the history of the IAC.

With keynote speakers from most of the world`s space organizations and companies, the Congress technical programme featured a record-breaking number of symposia with a series of keynote Plenary lectures underscoring the theme of "Promoting Space Development for the Benefit of Mankind".

Speaking at the event, head of the Azerbaijani delegation Shirinzade highlighted the country`s achievements in space industry. "Azerbaijan is rapidly developing its space activities. Azerbaijan`sfirst telecommunications satelliteAzerspace-1, launched in February this year, is only the beginning of the development of the country`s space industry," Shirinzadeh said.

On the sidelines of the event, the Azerbaijani delegation held bilateral meetings to discuss cooperation in the field of telecommunication satellites and space science.

A Space Exhibition featuring nearly 80 organizations from six continents, including national space agencies and specialized technology firms, also opened at the Congress venue.
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    Tbilisi, Georgia, July 26

    By Nana Kirtzkhalia - Trend:

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  • Iran Khodro, Peugeot to establish joint company
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    Iran Khodro, Peugeot to establish joint company

    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Fatih Karimov - Trend:

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  • Azerbaijani U-16 footballers beat German Bremen in Duisburg tournament
    26.07.2014 16:06
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  • Russia says EU sanctions endanger cooperation over security issues
    26.07.2014 16:04
    Russia said on Saturday that additional sanctions imposed by the European Union over Moscow's role in the Ukraine crisis would hamper cooperation over security issues and undermine the fight against terrorism and organized crime, Reuters reported.

    "The additional sanction list is direct evidence that the EU countries have set a course for fully scaling down cooperation with Russia over the issues of international and regional security," the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

    "[This] includes the fight against the proliferation of weapon of mass destruction, terrorism, organized crime and other new challenges and dangers."

    The European Union on Saturday added 15 Russians and Ukrainians and 18 organizations to its sanctions list over the crisis in Ukraine. The individuals were targeted with travel bans and asset freezes, and the organizations with asset freezes.

    The chiefs of Russia's FSB security service and foreign intelligence service as well as a number of other senior Russian officials were included in the sanctions list.

    "We are sure such decisions will be accepted with enthusiasm by global terrorists," the ministry said.

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  • GSK announces EU regulatory submission for malaria vaccine candidate RTS,S
    26.07.2014 16:00
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  • Ashgabat and Kabul mull prospects of transport corridor through Azerbaijan
    26.07.2014 15:39
    Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, July 26

    By Huseyn Hasanov- Trend:

    Turkmen Foreign Ministry hosted a meeting with the Afghan delegation headed by Director-General of Economic Cooperation department of the Afghanistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs Wahidullah Waissi, according to the Turkmen government`s report.

    The parties exchanged views on the implementation of specific economic and infrastructure projects, including the possibility of creation of of Afghanistan-Turkmenistan - Azerbaijan -Georgia transit-transport corridor, the report said.

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    The Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway line will allow increasing the flow of container, bulk and other types of cargo from Asia to Europe.

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  • Over 90% of cars in Georgia released until 2004
    26.07.2014 14:54
    Tbilisi, Georgia, July 25

    By Nana Kirtzkhalia - Trend:

    Georgia's vehicle fleet is growing annually. Some 60.9 percent of the fleet accounts for passenger cars, most of which are gray and white.

    A considerable part of the fleet (90.9 percent) are the cars, manufactured until 2004, according to the Georgian Interior Ministry.

    In 2013, the number of vehicles of the NISSAN brand (32 percent) and HONDA brand (30 percent) has increased significantly. Majority of passenger cars (51.9 percent) are of sedan type, though high off-road performance cars were in large demand in 2013.

    Both men and women prefer cars of Mercedes Benz brand.

    In 2013, the import of cars increased by 17 percent. Some 21.2 percent of imported vehicles were the cars that run on diesel. The right-hand drive cars accounted for 15 percent of imports.

    In 2013, the most popular models of premium brands were: Land Rover Range Rover (38), Land Rover Evoque (26), Mercedes ML (24) and BMW X5 (23).

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  • Over 50 people injured in Turkeyв's severe traffic accident
    26.07.2014 14:49
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Rufiz Hafizolgu - Trend:

    A severe traffic accident occurred in the central Turkish province of Kayseri. A commuter bus carrying passengers fell into the gorge, Turkish newspaper Milliyet reported on July 26.

    As a result of the accident, 54 people were injured. Six of them are in severe condition.

    All injured are Turkish citizens. They were taken to the nearest hospitals.

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  • Political barriers prevent Iranв's WTO accession
    26.07.2014 14:39
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Umid Niayesh - Trend:

    Iran's position towards joining World Trade Organization (WTO) has not changed, the chief of Iranian presidential staff Mohammad Nahavandian said.

    Nahavandian, who is also former head of Iran's WTO commission, said that international sanctions and political barriers prevented Iran to join the organization, the country's Moj news agency reported on July 26.

    He defended Iran's decision on joining the WTO, calling it "a professional decision" which followed in recent years by the country's administrations.

    Nahavandian expressed the hope that President Rouhani's active diplomacy would overcome all barriers on Iran's path towards the WTO.

    Iranian officials have reiterated repeatedly that the government eyes to join the World Trade Organization.

    Last January the head of the Iranian Institute for Trade Studies and Research, Mehdi Fathollah said that joining the WTO is among the top priorities of Iran's Industry, Mine, and Trade Ministry.

    However, he remarked that the sanctions imposed on Iran are an obstacle for the country and Iran needs to solve the problem before joining the WTO.

    Mohammad Reza Sabzalipour, Head of Iran's World Trade Center, said in December that Iran will not benefit from the world trade profits, unless it joins the organization.

    "The world powers and 159 member-states of WTO will not consider Iran as a reliable partner. I believe that it's nearly impossible for Tehran to join the organization in the next 10 years," Sabzalipour said.

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  • Baghdad official taken by gunmen
    26.07.2014 14:30
    Iraqi police officers say gunmen traveling in 10 black SUVs have seized the head of the Baghdad Provincial Council, AP reported.

    The two officers say Riyadh al-Adhdah, a Sunni medical doctor and member of the Iraqi Islamic Party, was taken away late Friday in Baghdad's Azamiyah district. It was not immediately clear whether he was arrested by security forces or abducted. The police officers spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to brief the media.

    In 2012, al-Adhdah was imprisoned for eight months on terrorism charges.

    The provincial councils are the highest of the four tiers of local government in Iraq established following the 2003 U.S.-led invasion that toppled former President Saddam Hussein.

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  • Nasrallah's nephew killed in Syria
    26.07.2014 14:29
    Hezbollah Chief Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah's nephew was killed in Syria during battles with rebel groups, media reports said Saturday, The Daily Star reported.

    The resistance group issued a statement, saying Hamzah Yassine from the southern town of Abbasieh was killed while performing his "Jihadist duty defending Holy sites."

    Local media reports including Al-Mustaqbal newspaper said Yassine was the son of Nasrallah's sister.

    Hezbollah, alongside regime troops, have been engaged in fierce battles with rebel groups including Nusra Front in Syria and along Lebanon's border since May of last year, when the party announced its military role in the war-torn country.

    On Friday, a Syrian jet strike on the border with Lebanon killed around 20 Syrian rebel fighters, security sources told Reuters. The strike hit just inside Lebanese territory in a barren area east of the town of Arsal.

    Syrian rebel fighters have frequently crossed into Arsal, a Sunni Muslim town where residents have often been sympathetic to fighters trying to topple Syrian President Bashar Assad, who is from Syria's Alawite minority.

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  • 85 Syria troops killed in jihadist advance
    26.07.2014 14:29
    At least 85 Syrian army troops were killed as the jihadist Islamic State advanced on a regime position in the northern province of Raqa, a monitoring group said Saturday, AFP reported.

    The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the fate of around 200 other soldiers remained unknown, as the IS assault forced the army to pull back late on Friday.

    The Division 17 base has fallen from army control but "the jihadists have not moved into the site for fear of air strikes", said the Britain-based group's director, Rami Abdel Rahman.

    The IS lost at least 28 jihadist fighters, he said.

    The Observatory said more than 50 troops were summarily executed, 19 more were killed in a double suicide attack and at least 16 others had died in the IS assault launched early Thursday.

    "Hundreds of troops surviving withdrew on Friday to safe places -- either to nearby villages whose residents oppose IS or to nearby Brigade 93 -- but the fate of some 200 remains unknown," said Abdel Rahman.

    "Some of the executed troops were beheaded, and their bodies and severed heads put on display in Raqa city," stronghold of the feared IS, he said.

    The assault on Division 17 comes less than two weeks after IS killed 270 security guards, employees and members of the paramilitary National Defense Forces during a jihadist assault on a gas field in Homs, central Syria.

    On Friday, the U.N. Commission of Inquiry on Syria said IS fighters accused of atrocities are expected to be added to a U.N. list of possible war crime indictees.

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  • Over 6,000 athletes expected to participate in first European Games in Baku
    26.07.2014 14:24
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Ilhama Isabalayeva - Trend:

    The bike parks will be created in Azerbaijan for mountain bike competitions as part of the preparation for the first European Games in Baku, according to the article of Azerbaijani Minister of Youth and Sports Azad Rahimov published in Azerbaijan newspaper.

    "The Organizing Committee was created under the chairmanship of First Lady of Azerbaijan, President of Heydar Aliyev Foundation Mehriban Aliyeva upon the presidential decree to conduct the first European Games at a high level," Rahimov said.

    Azerbaijan continues constructing the Park of European Games. The international competitions in swimming, volleyball, beach football, basketball 3x3 and water polo will be held there. The Water Sports Palace, the Olympic Stadium for 65,000 people are also under construction. The Heydar Aliyev Sport and Concert Complex, the Baku Sports Palace (Palace of Hand Games) are being overhauled. The Shotgun Shooting Sports Complex is being reconstructed, according to the article.

    The necessary equipment is being installed at the Tofiq Bahramov Republican Stadium to conduct archery competitions.

    The temporary equipment is being installed in the "Baku Crystal Hall" for boxing, fencing, karate, taekwondo and volleyball competitions.

    The additional work is conducted to organize the canoeing competitions in the Mingachevir Olympic training center "Kur". Moreover, the preparatory work is underway for the construction of bike parks for mountain bike competitions.

    More than 6,000 athletes from 49 world countries, who will compete in 19 kinds of sport, are expected to arrive in Azerbaijan to participate in the first European Games in 2015, according to the article.

    Moreover, the FIDE Congress entrusted Azerbaijan with holding the World Chess Cup in 2015, and a year later - Chess Olympiad in Baku. This clearly testifies to the fact that the country is capable of hosting the most prestigious tournaments, according to the article.

    The minister stressed that the last decision of holding the Islamic Solidarity Games in Baku in 2017 testifies to the ability of our country to host the most prestigious world sporting events - the Olympic Games.

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  • Al-Qaeda militants kill four Yemeni soldiers
    26.07.2014 14:23
    Al-Qaeda militants killed four soldiers from an elite Yemeni unit in an overnight attack on their post near the central town of Baida, a security official said Saturday, AFP reported.

    The attack also wounded two other soldiers, before the al-Qaeda militants set fire to an army vehicle and fled the scene, the official said.

    The army sent reinforcements and launched a hunt for the assailants in the surrounding mountains, said the official, cited by the official Saba news agency.

    The province of Baida is a stronghold of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, which is considered by Washington as the most dangerous affiliate of the jihadist network.

    AQAP is active across several parts of Yemen, having taken advantage of a collapse of central authority during a 2011 uprising that ousted veteran president Ali Abdullah Saleh.

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  • Azerbaijani oil prices for July 21-25
    26.07.2014 14:04
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Emil Ismayilov - Trend:

    The average price on AZERI LT, exported from Azerbaijan via the Ceyhan, Batumi and Supsa ports to Italian Augusta port, was $109.16 per barrel on July 21-25, or $0.48 more compared to the previous week.

    The maximum price for AZERI LT was $109.77 per barrel. The minimum price was $108.68 per barrel.

    The average price on Urals (Ex-Novo) exported from Azerbaijan via the Novorossiysk port was $104.34 per barrel or almost $0.93 more compared to the previous week.

    The maximum price for Urals was $105.09 per barrel and the minimum - $103.41 per barrel.

    Urals' density is 32 degrees API with a sulfur content up to 1.3 percent. The oil grade's specifications vary when sold depending on its high/low-quality content.

    The average price on Brent Dated was $106.1 per barrel or $1 more compared to the previous week.

    The maximum price on Brent was $106.75 per barrel and the minimum - $105.25.

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  • Air Algerie plane with 116 on board crashes in Niger - UPDATED
    26.07.2014 13:29
    Baku. Rufat Ahmadzadeh '" APA. An Air Algerie plane with 110 passengers and six crew members on board that went missing after taking off from Burkina Faso has crashed into the Niger, according to reports in the Algerian media.

    The aircraft was bound for Algiers, APA reports quoting NDTV.

    Air Algerie earlier said it lost contact with the passenger aircraft nearly an hour after takeoff.



    Baku - APA. An Air Algerie flight from Burkina Faso to Algiers has disappeared from radar on a flight from Burkina Faso to Algiers, the official Algerian news agency said Thursday, APA reports quoting AP.

    Air navigation services lost track of the plane 50 minutes after takeoff early Thursday, last sited at 0155 GMT, the agency said.

    "In keeping with procedures, Air Algerie has launched its emergency plan," the agency quoted the airline as saying.

    The flight path of Flight AH5017 from Ouagadougou, the capital of the west African nation of Burkina Faso, to Algiers was not immediately clear.

    Ougadougou is in a nearly straight line south of Algiers, passing over Mali where unrest continues in the north.
  • Local media teasing Yerevan's foreign policy
    26.07.2014 13:26
    By AzerNews

    Armenia's foreign policy which is highly depended on Russia's is an object of laughter for local mass media.

    The authorities' recent efforts in foreign policy are becoming more ridiculous, media report said.

    "For example, Foreign Minister Edvard Nalbandyan's recent remarks at the meeting of the foreign ministers of member states of the EU's Eastern Partnership held in Brussels on July 22 were ridiculous," media report said.

    "He stated that Yerevan looks forward to take further steps for the establishment of a new legal framework for cooperation with the EU relying on results achieved during the negotiations over the last years," media report said.

    Nalbandyan's statements cause an ironic smile on the face of the listeners, media report noted.

    "The results achieved during the negotiations fell into oblivion thanks to authorities' decision on joining the Russia-led Customs Union on September 3, 2013," the report underlined.

    Local media said that the EU has repeatedly confirmed its willingness dozens on various levels to develop associative relations with Armenia.

    "But Armenia is unable to develop these relations as Moscow forbids Yerevan to do so," media report noted.

    Mass media believe that the meeting of the foreign ministers of member states of the EU's "Eastern Partnership" could be a good arena to turn the failure of the process of entry into the Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) into an opportunity to resume association relations with the EU.

    The leaders of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan signed a treaty on the establishment of the EEU in Astana on May 29, 2014 without Armenia. Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan remained an observer of the signing ceremony, as his country had not yet completed all procedures to join the union.

    Armenia's signing of an agreement to join the EEU has been postponed several times so far. Prime Minister Ovik Abramyan recently said that the agreement will be signed by the end of October of 2014.

    Local experts doubt that October 2014 will be the final date of Armenia's entrance into the EEU. They also said that Armenia's joining to the EEU may create serious obstacles in its trade relations with the WTO states.
  • Azerbaijani business spent 55% of concessional financing for 2014
    26.07.2014 13:26
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 25

    By Zulfiyya Gurbanova - Trend:

    The National Fund for Entrepreneurship Support (NFES) under the Ministry of Economy and Industry of Azerbaijan has allocated a loan in the amount of 14.3 million AZN on favorable terms to the 22 business entities of Baku`s Sabunchu district, the ministry reported.

    It is planned to open about 140 new jobs opportunities through implementation of this projects for these funds.

    Loans will be focused mainly on the development of animal husbandry, construction of logistics center, production of furniture, shoes, plastic windows and doors, etc.

    A business forum dedicated to granting concessional loans to entrepreneurs was held in Mashtaga settlement of Sabunchu district with the participation of about 80 entrepreneurs.

    The presentation of samples of investment projects was held within the framework of the event on the creation of specialized "green market", logistics center, meat cutting enterprise that are considered priorities in the implementation of the economic potential of the region.

    As the NFES Executive Director, Shirzad Abdullayev said at the event since the beginning of the year the fund allocated concessional loans to 2,942 entrepreneurs in the amount of 153.9 million AZN. The implementation of these projects contributes to the opening of more than 6,600 new job opportunities. Today, totally the loan in the amount of 189.9 million AZN was allocated for financing of 851 investment projects of enterprises under government programs for socio-economic development of Baku and its settlements which will create over 6,000 new job opportunities.

    In 2014, the national fund plans to issue loans worth 280 million AZN, some 150 million AZN of which will be provided at the expense of repayment, and the remaining 130 million AZN - at the expense of the state budget.

    NFES was established in 1992. The issuance of loans to entrepreneurs is implemented through authorized banks and non-bank credit organizations, whose total number is 45.

    The official exchange rate on July 25 is 0.7842 AZN/USD.

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  • King is back
    26.07.2014 13:04
    Chelsea have completed the signing of Didier Drogba on a one-year contract.

    The 36-year-old returns to Stamford Bridge having left in 2012 after winning the Champions League.

    Drogba, who featured for Cote d'Ivoire at the World Cup earlier this summer, has scored 157 goals in 341 appearances for Chelsea and has also won three Premier League titles, four FA Cups and two League Cups with the club.

    "It was an easy decision,'' the striker told the clubв's official website.

    "I couldn't turn down the opportunity to work with Jose again. Everyone knows the special relationship I have with this club and it has always felt like home to me.

    "My desire to win is still the same and I look forward to the opportunity to help this team. I am excited for this next chapter of my career."Drogba is reunited with Jose Mourinho after working with the Portuguese for three years before his departure in September 2007.

    "Heв's coming because heв's one of the best strikers in Europe," the former Real Madrid and Inter coach said.

    "I know his personality very well and I know if he comes back heв's not protected by history or what heв's done for this club previously. He is coming with the mentality to make more history."

  • Transit flights through Iran's airspace increase by 10 percent
    26.07.2014 12:54
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Umid Niayesh - Trend:

    Number of international transit flights over Iran's air zone has increased by 10.3 percent during the one-month period (June 21- July 22), compared to the same month of 2013.

    Deputy Civil Aviation Organization for Aeronautical Operations Ebrahim Shoushtari said that 14,648 transit flights through the skies of Iran have been carried out during the reported period, the country's official IRIB news agency reported on July 26.

    Shoushtari went on to add that in total about 34,500 flights were carried out during the reported period, some 13,312 of which are local flights. Meanwhile the number of international flights stood at 5,724.

    Iran's local flights has decreased by 3.5 percent during the one-month period compared to the same period of last year , however international flights indicate an increase by 5.7 percent during the reported period.

    It should be noted that Iran announced preparedness to open its airspace to the passing flights , after Ukraine closed its airspace following the Malaysian plane crash.

    Shoushtari said earlier that, following the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)'s request, Iran declared readiness to admit passing flights which intend to change their route and use Iran's aerial space.

    He added that all Malaysian airplanes set off from Amsterdam for southeast Asia have changed route and cross Iran's airspace instead of the eastern Ukraine's airspace.

    A Malaysia Airlines' Boeing-777 with over 290 people on board crashed in Ukraine, close to the border with Russia, on July 17.

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  • River in China mysteriously turns bloody red
    26.07.2014 12:49
    В A waterway in eastern China has mysteriously turned a blood red color.

    Residents in Zhejiang province said the river looked normal at 5 a.m. Beijing time on Thursday morning. Within an hour, the entire river turned crimson. Residents also said a strange smell wafted through the air.

    ''The really weird thing is that we have been able to catch fish because the water is normally so clear,'' one local villager commented on Chinaв's microblogging site Weibo.

    Inspectors from the Wenzhou Environmental Protection Bureau said they have not found the cause of the incident, although water samples seem to indicate the suspicious color was a result of illegal dumping in the river.

    ''We suspect that somebody dumped artificial coloring in the water because he thought the typhoon yesterday would cause heavy rain, and nobody would notice [the color],'' Jianfeng Xiao, Chief of the bureau told China News.

    ''It turned out there wasnв't heavy rainfall yesterday, so the evidence is left behind,'' Xiao said.

    Xiao said there is a paper manufacturer, a food coloring company and clothing-maker a long the river. The bureau is still investigating the incident.

  • ISIS militants may be added to U.N. war crimes list
    26.07.2014 12:45
    Fighters belonging to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria are expected to be added to a list being drawn by the United Nations to document possible war crimes indictees, the chief rights investigator said, Al Arabiya reported.

    Brazilian chief investigator Paulo Pinheiro, who heads the U.N. Commission of Inquiry on Syria, said incriminating evidence against ISIS would be easier to collect because "there are indications of a strong chain of command."

    "They are good candidates for the list," said Pinheiro, who briefed the U.N. Security Council on the results of their inquiry.

    "I can assure you that we are collecting information on perpetrators from all sides including non-state armed groups and ISIS," he told reporters.

    "I am not in a position to say who is winning the World Cup of human rights violations. Both sides are doing horrific things and they will continue if there is no accountability."

    After a successful offensive in Iraq, ISIS fighters last month declared an "Islamic caliphate" in territory it controls in Iraq and Syria and vowed to expand.

    They have been accused by rights groups of summary executions, abductions, murder among other atrocities.

    Pinheiro said there were lots of Syrian rebels are defecting to join the ultra-hardline Islamic insurgents.

    ISIS was undergoing a "Syrian-ization," he said in statements carried by Reuters.

    "What began with a lot of foreign fighters, now you have authentic Syrian citizens," Pinheiro told reporters. "We are seeing more Syrians coming to ISIS than before."

    He said there was an estimated 10,000 to 15,000 foreign fighters with various groups battling Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's troops.

    The U.N. Security Council failed in May to agree on a formal request to the International Criminal Court to take action toward prosecutions after Russia and China vetoed the move.

    Set up in September 2011, the Commission of Inquiry has collected witness accounts, satellite photographs and other documents to build up its caseload of human rights violations, although none of the members have traveled to Syria.

    The war crimes list being drawn up by the inquiry remains confidential but Pinheiro said it included intelligence chiefs, heads of detention centers that have torture chambers and military commanders "who target civilians."

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  • SOCAR starts construction of new platform in Caspian Sea
    26.07.2014 12:45
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 25

    By Emil Ismayilov- Trend:

    The State Oil Company of Azerbaijan has started construction and installation works within the framework of construction of new platform No. 6 at the "Bulla Deniz" field in the Azerbaijani sector of the Caspian Sea, the company reported.

    The platform is designed for drilling of four wells, the report said.

    Daily debit of four wells on the platform No.6 is projected to reach two million cubic meters of gas and 600 tons of condensate. The platform will be installed at the point where the water depth is 26 meters. It will be on the balance sheet of oil and gas extraction office named after Nariman Narimanov.

    As the first vice-president of the State Oil Company Khoshbakht Yusifzade said earlier, SOCAR will construct a new platform on the "Bulla Deniz" field in the area where a fire occurred as a result of an accident. The fire on the old platform was extinguished, and on October 25, 2013, it was annexed to the gas transportation system.

    Considering the new block`s reserves at the field where the well showed a very large debit, a new platform will be built. The reserves of the new block where a high result was achieved are estimated to stand at 10 billion cubic meters of gas, he said.

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  • Israeli strikes push Gaza death toll near 900
    26.07.2014 12:44
    Eight Palestinians were killed in an Israeli air strike on the southern Gaza town of Khan Yunis Saturday, four of them children, emergency services said, according to Agence France-Presse.

    About 20 people were wounded in the strike, hours before a ceasefire was due to take effect.

    The deaths brought the overall toll of Palestinian dead to 879, Al Arabiya reported.

    Meanwhile, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) called on Palestinians who were asked to vacate their homes to "refrain from returning"

    "Gaza civilians who have been requested to vacate from their residence are to refrain from returning," the IDF spokesperson's said in a statement.

    "The IDF shall respond if terrorists choose to exploit this time to attack IDF personnel or fire at Israeli civilians," the statement read.

    "During this time, the Operational activities to locate and neutralize tunnels in the Gaza Strip will continue," it added.

    On Friday, two Israeli soldiers were reportedly killed in Gaza fighting, taking the total number of military deaths since the start of ground operations there to 37.

    "Yesterday evening two Israel Defence Forces soldiers were killed in combat in the Gaza Strip," an army statement said.

    The incident happened shortly after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry that Israel agrees to a 12-hour Gaza ceasefire starting at 7am Israeli time (4:00am GMT) on Saturday.

    Hamas also agreed to implement the 12-hour ceasefire.

    Meanwhile, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meanwhile called for a seven-day humanitarian truce with an extendable 12-hour pause.

    The U.S., Britain, Germany, Italy, the European Union, Turkey and Qatar will attend talks on Saturday in Paris aimed at converging "all efforts" for a ceasefire in Gaza.

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  • Thousands take to N.Y. streets to protest Israeli offensive in Gaza
    26.07.2014 12:44
    Thousands of people took to the streets of New York City on Friday evening to protest Israel's offensive in the Gaza Strip and demand an end to the violence that has already killed nearly 850 Palestinians, Reuters reported.

    Police scrambled to corral the demonstrators, which officers estimated numbered between 2,000 and 3,000, as they flooded into the busy streets around Times Square.

    Waving Palestinian flags and signs condemning Israel for the offensive, many called for an end to U.S. aid to the country.

    "We're trying to break the siege and end the killing in Palestine. We just want them to live like human beings," said Ramsey Jamal, 37, a Palestinian-American from Montgomery, New York.

    On his shoulders sat his 8-year-old son, Moses, who carried a placard reading: "Israel I'm just a kid. Please don't kill me," alongside marks resembling a child's bloody handprints.

    Israel began its offensive earlier this month, citing a surge in rocket attacks launched from Hamas militants in Gaza.

    The Palestinian death toll in the Gaza Strip on Friday climbed to 844, most of them civilians. Thirty-five Israeli soldiers and three civilians have also died.

    On Friday, both sides agreed to a 12-hour humanitarian ceasefire set to begin on Saturday morning.

    In New York City, the crowd marched through the bustling evening streets of Midtown Manhattan chanting "Free, free Palestine!" and "1,2,3,4, stop the killing, stop the war!"

    It was unclear who organized the protest, which drew demonstrators to the city from miles away.

    Raya Karzoun, a 21-year-old Palestinian-American nursing student, traveled from Milford, Connecticut, to join in.

    She said her parents fled the Gaza Strip decades ago after similar Israeli attacks, and that she was heartbroken when she heard of the most recent offensive.

    "We're protesting to free Gaza," Karzoun said, wearing a Palestinian flag like a shawl. "Even though I don't live in that country, the country lives in me."

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  • Israeli shells kill 18 Gazans of a single family
    26.07.2014 12:39
    Israeli tank shelling killed 18 Palestinians from a single family in the southern Gaza Strip on Saturday, the Gaza health ministry said, shortly before a 12-hour humanitarian truce agreed by Israel and Hamas went into effect, Reuters reported.

    Gaza Health Ministry spokesman Ashraf Al-Qidra said that the 18 members of the Al-Najar family had been trapped inside their house in Khuzaa village east of Khan Younis since Thursday and that many others were wounded in Israeli tank shelling.

    The fatalities brought up to 881 the number of Palestinians, most of them civilians, killed since the Israeli Gaza offensive began on July 8.

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  • Venice Film Festival announces Golden Lion contenders
    26.07.2014 12:35
    This yearв's Venice Film Festival will tackle topics from the financial crisis to drone warfare, and feature performances from Willem Dafoe, Al Pacino and Ethan Hawke.

    Organizers on Thursday announced a 20-strong competition lineup that includes Ramin Bahraniв's subprime mortgage drama 99 Homes, with Andrew Garfield and Laura Dern, and Andrew Niccolв's The Good Kill, starring Hawke as a dissatisfied drone operator.

    The latter will have its North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) in September.

    Other films competing for the Golden Lion include David Gordon Greenв's Texan drama Manglehorn starring Pacino and Holly Hunter; Abel Ferraraв's Pasolini, starring Dafoe as the taboo-breaking Italian filmmaker; and The Cut by Turkish-German director Fatih Akin.

    Manglehorn and Pasolini will also be screened at TIFF.

    The 71st Venice Film Festival opens Aug. 27 with the world premiere of Alejandro Inarrituв's Birdman or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance, starring Michael Keaton. The festival runs to Sept. 6.

  • Iran still relies on gas imports as domestic consumption rises
    26.07.2014 12:34
    Tehran, Iran, Jul. 23

    By Milad Fashtami - Trend:

    Iran's domestic consumption has been on the rise in the previous years. The country is also obliged to export a significant amount of gas to neighboring countries.

    The sanctions against the country have hindered Iran's attempts to develop its natural gas sector and increase its production rate.

    The sharp rise in domestic gas consumption rate and the slow pace of developments of infrastructures resulted in series of gas shortages in the cold months in the previous years.

    So the country still relies on gas imports to meet its domestic needs.

    The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) on its annual report about Iran's energy sector released on July 22 said that the country accounted for less than 1% of global natural gas trade in 2012.

    In 2012, Iran exported 326 billion cubic feet and imported 188 billion cubic feet of dry natural gas, both via pipelines.

    Iran relies on imports particularly during winter months when residential space-heating demand peaks during colder weather. Iran does not have the infrastructure in place to export or import liquefied natural gas (LNG).

    The NIOC (National Iranian Oil Company) started construction projects in the past to build an LNG export plant, but most of the work has been halted, mainly because of the lack of technology and foreign investment, stemming from international sanctions.

    Iran's natural gas imports declined by roughly 50% in 2012 compared with the previous year, reflecting substantially fewer volumes imported from Turkmenistan.

    According to FGE, the U.S. and EU sanctions interfered with financial transactions between Turkmenistan and Iran in 2012 and 2013, resulting in the decline of Turkmen gas imports.

    In 2011, Iran received almost 30% of Turkmenistan's gas exports, but the share dropped to under 15% in 2012. Nonetheless, more than 90% of Iran's natural gas imports still came from Turkmenistan in 2012, and the remainder was from Azerbaijan. Imports of Turkmen natural gas are essential to Iran's ability to meet both seasonal peak demand and industrial demand in northern Iran.

    Iran exports natural gas to Turkey, Armenia, and Azerbaijan. Almost 90% of Iranian exports went to Turkey in 2012, and the remainder went to Azerbaijan and Armenia. Armenia uses the majority of imported Iranian natural gas to produce electricity at the Hrazden power plant. In return, excess base-load electricity generated from the Armenian Nuclear Power Plant (ANPP) is exported to Iran.

    Iran's exports natural gas to the isolated Azerbaijani exclave of Nakhchivan via the Salmas-Nakhchivan pipeline. In exchange, Azerbaijan exports natural gas to Iran's northern provinces via the Astara-Kazi-Magomed pipeline.

    In a report titled Natural Gas Exports from Iran, EIA estimated that the average revenues from Iran's natural gas exports during the period July 2011 to June 2012 were approximately $10.5 million per day, or about 5% of the estimated $231 million per day in revenues from crude oil and condensates exports over the same period. In 2010, natural gas exports accounted for less than 4% of Iran's total export earnings, while crude oil and condensates accounted for more than 78%.

    In 2012, Iran consumed an estimated 5.5 trillion cubic feet of dry natural gas domestically, an increase of 2% compared with the previous year. The residential and commercial sector accounted for the largest share of dry natural gas consumption (34%), followed by electric power (28%), industrial (25%), transportation (5%), and other sectors (8%), according to FGE.

    While Iran's domestic natural gas consumption has been growing in those sectors, domestically-produced natural gas is also central to Iran's plans to increase crude oil production through EOR techniques.

    In 2012, Iran injected more than 1.0 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in its oil fields to help boost oil production.

    Iran has experienced seasonal natural gas supply shortages in the winter months mostly because of the delay of the South Pars projects. Also, Iran's natural gas imports declined by roughly 50% in 2012 over the previous year, reflecting substantially fewer volumes imported from Turkmenistan.

    As a result of the 2013 natural gas supply shortage, power plants were switched to use fuel oil and diesel. Also, natural gas supply, used to fuel compressed natural gas (CNG) stations for transportation and production at petrochemical plants, was disrupted this past winter.

    Iran is expected to continue to experience seasonal natural gas supply shortages in the next few years, although this largely depends on whether any new South Pars phases come online. Iran is planning to expand its underground natural gas storage capacity to ensure that enough natural gas is available during peak demand periods in the future.

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  • What about taxi tour with a parrot? - PHOTO
    26.07.2014 12:18
    Day.Az Facebook page has got a photo sent by its user Nara Abbasova.

    She has managed to capture an interesting picture. As seen in the photo, a cage with a parrot hangs inisde the London cab in Baku. It rises a wonder, whether the taxi driver provides creative service to its clients or someone has just forgotten that exotic bird in the cab?
  • Chomsky: Turkey has taken strong stand against Israel
    26.07.2014 12:18
    Turkey has taken the strongest stance against Israeli military aggression in Gaza while the United States bears the greatest responsibility for the assault, according to political commentator and activist Noam Chomsky Anadolu Agency reported

    Speaking in an exclusive interview with The Anadolu Agency, Chomsky talked broadly on the latest Israeli attack on the Palestinian enclave, reserving his praise for Turkey and his ire for the U.S..

    The author identified Turkey as the only country to openly criticize Israeli's ground and air operation against Gaza.

    "Turkey is, at the moment, the only country that has taken a strong stand against Israel, telling the whole world that it is against Israeli massacres in Gaza," he said.

    Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has led criticism of Israel, calling it a "terror state" and even accusing it of having "surpassed" Nazi atrocities.

    Chomsky, professor emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said the expectation that the international community would resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was a false one as the concept of an international community was an illusion.

    "States simply follow their own strategic interests," he said. "It is clear that the United States openly backs Israel. The European Union doesn't care much about people in Gaza. The Arab world is also both split and impotent to do to something important."

    It is America that Chomsky holds mostly responsible for the present carnage in Gaza, where more than 800 Palestinians, many of them helpless civilians, have been killed since the start of Israel's Operation Protective Edge.

    "The U.S. gives Israel military, political, diplomatic and ideological support for the killing of Palestinians in a direct and explicit way," Chomsky explained.

    "That is, Israeli armed forces are using U.S. weapons to carry out slaughter against Palestinians, thus seriously violating international law."

    It is this involvement in the Middle East that is the root cause of persistent anti-Americanism among Muslims around the world.

    "After all the incidents in the Muslim world, it will be hard for the U.S. to convince Muslims that it wants a friendly and sincere dialogue," Chomsky added. "By providing support to Israel, the U.S. causes a deep anti-Americanism among Muslims."

    This is compounded by hypocrisy in its dealings with the Islamic world, where America's words are very different from its deeds.

    "Hypocrisy is the name of the game, not just in this case," he said. "The U.S has betrayed the Islamic world once again and from now on the co-operation between the two sides will be more difficult to achieve."

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  • Suarez ban to be reduced by CAS
    26.07.2014 12:12
    Luis Suarez could have his four-month ban for biting reduced, allowing the Barcelona striker to play in the club's first La Liga game of the 2014-15 season.

    The 27-year-old was handed a nine-match international ban and was suspended for four months from "any football-related activities" by Fifa in June after biting Italy's Giorgio Chiellini during a World Cup group stage match in Brazil.

    After having an initial appeal against the punishment rejected by football's world governing body, Suarez ultimately completed an €88 million move to Barcelona - though the Catalan giants were unable to formally present their new acquisition because of the ban.

    Barcelona decided to take an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) after the player's lawyer described the punishment as "draconian, totalitarian and fascist".

    And a source from CAS has now told Goal that, while Suarez's ban from international football will remain in place, his four-month suspension is likely to be reduced '" meaning that he will be able to begin the new Primera Liga campaign for Barca.

    "Now that the case has arrived at CAS, it is very likely that we will reduce the penalty," the source confirmed.

    "The ban would only apply to the Uruguay national team and not to Barcelona."

    Arbitrators at CAS are believed to agree with the consensus at Barcelona that Fifa's overall sanction against Suarez is excessive.

    Under the terms of the suspension, the Uruguay star is unable to train with his new team-mates and cannot step foot inside Camp Nou.

    Suarez apologised for his actions following the incident in Brazil, which also resulted in the player being fined 100,000 Swiss Francs (€82,000) by Fifa.

  • Turkey's policy is not directed against Jewish people
    26.07.2014 11:54
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Rufiz Hafizoglu - Trend:

    Turkey's policy towards Israel is not directed against the Jewish people, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on July 26, Turkish TV channel Haber7 reported.

    "There are certain forces willing to present Ankara's strict policy towards Israel's aggression against the Palestinians as anti-Semitism, which is impossible in Turkey," he said.

    Erdogan stressed that the Jews live in Turkey and they are all citizens of the country.

    "The Jews in Turkey are under state protection as other citizens," Erdogan added.

    Currently, some 22,000 Jews live in Turkey, according to the official statistics.

    The protests against Israel's hostilities in the Gaza Strip began in various cities of Turkey.

    "Turkey will not remain silent while Israel carries out military aggression against the Palestinian people," Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said earlier.

    "Some Western countries turn a blind eye to Israel's actions," he added. "This testifies to the fact that they are also supporters of military aggression against the Palestinians."

    Moreover, Erdogan likened Israeli actions against the Palestinians with the Nazis' actions against the Jewish people.

    Erdogan said that Israel spreads terrorism in the region.

    Some 10,000 Palestinians held an action of protest in Ramallah against Israel's hostilities in Gaza on the morning of July 25.

    Three people were killed and 30 were injured during the clashes between Israeli soldiers and the Palestinians.

    It is reported that the Israeli military used tear gas and water cannons against the demonstrators.

    The protests against Israel's hostilities involving MPs from the ruling and opposition parties have been recently held in Turkey.

    More than 884 Palestinians were killed during the 'Enduring Rock' operation which started on July 7.

    It is reported that the Israeli army lost 45 servicemen during the hostilities.

    Some 5,840 people were wounded.

    Moreover, some 208 children and 101 women were killed during Israel's military operations in Gaza. Over 1,779 children and 1,112 women were wounded.

    Some 80 Israeli servicemen were killed and more than 300 were wounded during the military operations.

    Israel has recently agreed to a 12-hour ceasefire.

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu agreed to a short-term truce from 7:00 local time on July 26, the U.S representatives said in Cairo on July 25.

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  • Turkey widens fight against tobbaco products consumption
    26.07.2014 11:49
    Turkey will impose new bans on consumption of tobacco products from January 2015, Turkish Haber7 TV channel reported on July 25.

    The country's parliament will review the new draft law on tobacco products in October 2014, according to the TV channel.

    The new bans on the consumption of tobacco products will be imposed in accordance with the state program on fighting against smoking.

    Starting from January 2015, all tobacco products will be packed up into black packages to make them less attractive for consumers and the brands of tobacco products will be encoded, the TV channel said.

    At the same time, smoking in parks and restaurant courtyards will be banned from January 2015.

    Turkey has imposed bans on smoking in public places since 2008 and the fine for smoking in public and enclosed places is 88 Turkish liras.

    Around 45.205 million Turkish liras are spent on purchasing tobacco products in Turkey per year, according to the statistical data.

  • ITC hails economic achievements of Azerbaijan
    26.07.2014 11:46
    Arancha Gonzalez,Executive Directorof theInternational Trade Centre(ITC) in his meeting with Ambassador Murad Najafbeyli, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Azerbaijan to the UN Office and other international organizations at Geneva hailed the economic achievements of Azerbaijan, expressed gratitude for development assistance and increasing contributions to the development initiatives of the United Nations structures.

    Arancha Gonzales said Azerbaijan has become a country with the most quickly developing economy in the world.

    ITC head has highly assessed the macro-economic stability and structural changes in the country, its exemplary results to be attracted to the direct foreign investments, as well as constant and stable progress.

    Gonzales said the International Trade Centre has every potential and stands ready to support the country's economic development goals in all sectors, including agriculture and tourism, information-communications technologies, construction and transport, as well as export promotion. He called on close cooperation between Azerbaijan and ITC.

    The International Trade Centre (ITC) is a subsidiary organization of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and provides trade-related technical assistance.

    Founded in 1964 with the headquarters in Geneva, ITC has been established for the purpose of assisting the export promotion efforts of the developing countries by providing them with information on export markets and marketing, and to help them develop their export promotion services and train the personnel needed for these services.
  • Turkish scientists visit Shamakhi Astrophysical Observatory
    26.07.2014 11:45
    Turkish scientists have visited the Shamakhi Astrophysical Observatory.

    Turkish employees of the Kandilli Observatory of the Bogazici University Dogan Kalagut, Suleyman Tunc and Ali Pinar have visited the Shamakhi Astrophysical Observatory named after Nasreddin Tusi in Azerbaijan, AzerTag reports.

    The Turkish scientists were informed about the activity of Observatory.

    The Azerbaijani scientists discussed cooperation prospects in implementation of joint researches with their Turkish colleagues.
  • Ankara-Istanbul high-speed railway route starts in Turey
    26.07.2014 11:35
    A new high-speed railway line, which connects Ankara and Istanbul, was put into operation in Turkey on July 25, Turkish TRT Haber channel reported on July 25.

    Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and other officials attended the opening of an Ankara-Istanbul new high-speed railway line, extending for 533 kilometers.

    The construction project was implemented in two phases. The first stage is the construction of the Ankara-Eskisehir railway line, the second - the Eskisehir-Istanbul line construction.

    The first phase of the project was completed in 2009.

    When using the new high-speed railway, students, servicemen and people older 60 will have up to a 20 percent discount, while children under 12 years old - up to 50 percent.

    It is expected that after commissioning the new high-speed rail line, the travel time from Ankara to Istanbul will drop to 3.5 hours. Currently, the trip time from Ankara to Istanbul is seven-eight hours by bus and 40 minutes by plane.

    Under the 2023 Vision program [celebrating the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Republic of Turkey], the country has increased the investments in the development of transport sector.

    Turkish State Railways said in January that it will invest almost half of its 2014 budget (1.8 billion liras) in the projects for development of high-speed trains in the country.

  • Two foreign soldiers killed in Afghanistan
    26.07.2014 11:27
    Baku-APA.Two soldiers of the NATO-led coalition or International Security Assistance Forces (ISAF) were killed in Afghanistan on Thursday, APA reports quoting Xinhua.

    "Two International Security Assistance Force service members died as a result of an enemy forces attack in southern Afghanistan today," the ISAF statement said.

    The statement gave neither the nationalities of the victims nor the details about the incident under the ISAF policy.

    The latest casualties bring the number of foreign soldiers killed in Afghanistan to 53 this year.

    Nearly 50,000 NATO-led coalition troops, down from the peak of 130,000 in 2010, are stationed in Afghanistan, and the United States plans to trim its forces to less than 10,000 next year.
  • Islamic State of Iraq and Levant poses no threat to Iran
    26.07.2014 11:14
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Temkin Jafarov - Trend:

    Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorist organization poses no threat to Iran, Iran's defense minister, Gen. Hossein Dehqan said on July 26, Iranian news agency Д°SNA reported.

    "The members of this terrorist organization are mercenaries," he said. "After they commit crimes in Syria, they infiltrated into Iraq. The terrorists of this organization want to instill fear in the region."

    Dehqan stressed that the Iraqi people will soon destroy this terrorist organization.

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  • Burning issues forces Nagorno-Karabakh conflict on back burner for U.S.
    26.07.2014 10:59
    By Claude Salhani - Trend:

    There is a need to renew efforts to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict once and for all, said US ambassador to Azerbaijan, Richard Morningstar, at a farewell event on July, 24, in Baku.

    Words well spoken, indeed. But are they backed up?

    All parties concerned are in favor of finding a resolution to this thorn in the side of the Caucasus - a situation of no war and no peace - that is placing the region in eternal limbo.

    "Peace would bring substantial benefits to people across the region and ensure Azerbaijan's prosperity into the future," said the American diplomat.

    Indeed, peace, naturally, would be beneficial for Azerbaijan, of that there is no doubt. The country is doing quite well on the economic front, and revenues from oil and natural gas are being well invested, a detail that did not escape the attention of French President Francois Hollande during his trip to Baku about a month ago.

    During a meeting with the French community in a downtown hotel, Mr. Hollande praised Azerbaijan and its president, Ilham Aliyev, for investing wisely in the country by developing its infrastructure.

    If anyone one side might be opposed to a settlement of the problem it must be the Armenians. Why? Because a settlement, in so far as the Azerbaijanis are concerned, can only mean the return of their land, a solution that Armenia will certainly oppose, as they will come out of this agreement minus the land they began to capture in 1992.

    But this is why the talks are complicated because this is not an all-sum game. These are negotiations in which each side will have to make concessions. For Armenia it may mean having to give up land in exchange for peace with its neighbor, and improve relations with other Turkic-speaking countries who support Azerbaijan.

    Such as Turkey, a major player in the region.

    As mentioned above, this is a negotiation in which every side will need to cede something. In Azerbaijan's case they can offer Armenia two things: peace and financial incentives. The first will create trade and tourism--and all the jobs associated with the industry--between the two South Caucasus countries and the second will help Armenia, which is currently in dire economic straits.

    The two member countries of the Minsk Group, the United States and France, two countries with large Armenian communities, can offer Yerevan financial support and security guarantees. This will render Armenia less dependent on Russian support, which it is wholly and unhealthily relying upon at the moment for just about everything.

    But before we even venture into that domain, there would be the need to bring the two parties together at the presidential level in order to get the ball rolling, at least in the first set of meetings.

    However, Ambassador Morningstar's bosses in Washington, the folks on Pennsylvania Avenue as well as those at Foggy Bottom are currently preoccupied with far more burning issues -- quite literally burning -- in the Middle East and Eastern Europe.

    In Iraq the Maleki government is fighting for its life as Islamists from the group calling itself the Islamic Caliphate are edging closer to the capital Baghdad every day.

    The leitmotif for much of the violence in the Middle East, the conflict opposing Palestinians and Israelis is turning tragic with Gaza now under severe bombardment for 17 days. The death toll keeps mounting, according the respected daily newspaper Haaretz more than 770 Palestinians have been killed and 32 Israeli soldiers have lost their lives in the fighting.

    Not to mention the civil war raging in Syria, the precariousness of the political situation on Libya, the nuclear talks with Iran and the civil war in Ukraine between pro-Russian separatists and pro-government troops, with the severe consequences that have resulted such as the downing of the Malaysian Airways jet.

    It goes without saying that the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh comes pretty low on the US diplomatic totem pole.

    U.S. diplomats in Baku told Trend that there was "nothing really new" in the ambassador's speech. No new policy, no new initiative. But the ambassador was reiterating the U.S. position on the issue. In other words it was really more of the same. A diplomat's going away speech, as it should be; Polite, concise and without much meat on the bones.

    It is understandable that with the clock running out on the ambassador's tenure in Baku (he leaves next week), there is little that he can accomplish other that to leave the Azerbaijani people with a little hope for a just resolution of the conflict.

    Claude Salhani is a political analyst and senior editor with
  • Over 884 Palestinians killed during hostilities in Gaza Strip
    26.07.2014 10:59
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Rufiz Hafizoglu - Trend:

    Over 884 people were killed during the entire period of Israel's hostilities in the Gaza Strip, the Turkish news agency Anadolu said on July 26.

    Some 5,840 people were wounded.

    Moreover, some 208 children and 101 women were killed during Israel's military operations in Gaza. Over 1,779 children and 1,112 women were wounded.

    Some 80 Israeli servicemen were killed and more than 300 were wounded during the military operations.

    Israel has recently agreed to a 12-hour ceasefire.

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu agreed to a short-term truce from 7:00 local time on July 26, the U.S representatives said in Cairo on July 25.

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  • Weekly review of Azerbaijani currency market
    26.07.2014 10:49
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Ilaha Mammadli - Trend:

    The official rate of AZN to the U.S. dollar set by the Azerbaijani Central Bank (CBA) consolidated by 0.0001 points (0.01 percent). The average rate was established at 0.78428 AZN to 1 U.S. dollar.

    Official rate of AZN to 1 U.S. dollar:

    July 14


    July 21


    July 15


    July 22


    July 16


    July 23


    July 17


    July 24


    July 18


    July 25


    Average weekly


    Average weekly


    As a result of last week's exchange, the stock exchange price of the Azerbaijani AZN to the U.S. dollar, established based on results from the Baku Inter-bank Currency Exchange (BICEX), remained unchanged. The average rate was set at 0.7829 AZN to 1 U.S. dollar.

    Deals concluded last week at BEST comprised: July 21 - $5.773 million, July 22 - $3.98 million, July 24 - $2 million. No deals were concluded on July 23 and 25.

    Exchange rate of AZN to 1 U.S. dollar:

    July 14


    July 21


    July 15


    July 22


    July 16


    July 23


    July 17


    July 24


    July 18


    July 25


    Average weekly


    Average weekly


    No deal was concluded with USD/AZN T 1 and T 2 due to lack of appeals made by dealers. Appeals on EUR/AZN and RUB/AZN were not made by banks in BEST.

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  • Armenian armed forces violate ceasefire over 40 times a day
    26.07.2014 10:44
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Ilhama Isabalayeva - Trend:

    Armenian armed forces violated the ceasefire with Azerbaijan 41 times in different locations of the contact line between Azerbaijani and Armenian troops last night, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry reported on July 26.

    Armenian Armed Forces opened fire at the Azerbaijani side at the positions of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces located in the nameless heights and villages of Kokhanebi, Alibayli, Qizilhajili and Aghdam of the Tovuz region from the positions, located in the nameless heights and villages of Chinari, Aygepar and Mosesgeh of Armenia's Berd region and at the positions of the Azerbaijani Armed Forces located in the village of Alibayli of the Tovuz region, from the villages of Mosesgeh and Aygepar of Armenia's Berd region from 21:30 to 01:50.

    Azerbaijani Armed Forces also took fire from the positions located near the villages of Chilabyurt, Geyarkh, Qizil Oba of the Terter region, Yusifjanly, Marzili of the Aghdam region, Horadiz of the Fizuli region, Mehdili of the Jabrayil region, Tapqaraqoyunlu of the Qoranboy region and at the nameless heights in the territory of the Khojavend and Goygol regions.

    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.

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  • Azerbaijan's Gakh is perfect place to hide from summer heat
    26.07.2014 10:29
    By AzerNews

    It is hot in Baku. Is not it? Now it is the time is to resume our journey around cool Azerbaijani regions. Ilisu village in Gakh is our next destination.

    You may ask, what is interesting about the village? To get your answer, it is enough to imagine a shagged mountainous settlement with crystal clear air and chilly springs, historical places, amazing landscape and mouthwatering cuisine. You are right. This is just another outstanding village of Azerbaijan.

    You can reach Ilisu from Gakh, one of the ancient regions with a rich history, located some 400 km northwest from the capital Baku. The mountainous village located at 1,400-1,600 meters above sea is bordering Russia near Dagestan.

    Regardless of seasons, Ilisu is the best place to get rid of the stress of the big cities. Embraced by mountainous forests on all sides, the place is famous for its heavy rains and bright rainbows in spring and summer.

    Actually, Ilisu is a state nature reserve that covers an area of 54,000 hectares and is home to hundreds of plants, animals and birds, some of which are included on the Red Book.

    Favorable natural conditions make the place a perfect destination for mountain climbing and hiking, fishing and hunting. You can also make a tour of the neighborhoods on horseback.

    Just one kilometer away from the village, you can find the picturesque Ulu waterfalls, a must-see place for anyone visiting Ilisu. Professional climbers can risk and mount Jinligala's top on the edge of an abyss, which has access only from one side.

    There are hundreds of mineral water springs and deep and fast mountainous rivers there. Even the name Ilisu means the abundance of hot water springs. The sulfur-containing thermal mineral water is of therapeutic importance and many people came here especially to undergo treatment.

    I hope you are healthy enough to study ancient places around the village. There are 11 registered historical monuments in Ilisu and on mountaintops, 10-meter high Sentry fortress of 14th century, the Shamil fortress and Chingala, but they are difficult to get access on during summer.

    There are three Russian forts in Ilisu, one on top of the mountain and two in the village.

    The emblem of the village, Sumug fortress, is a four-storey defense tower commanding a great view of the surrounding areas. The place may seem familiar to you if you have seen the Soviet and Azerbaijani action film "Don't be afraid, I am with you" because some scenes of the film were shot here.

    The 17th century Great Bridge over the Kurmuk River was built when Ilisu was a capital of a sultanate. Egg-yolk was used as solidifier of the bridge and for this reason the bridge is believed to be still in usable condition.

    In the center of the village, you can find a two-storey Ilisu fortress built in 19th century. Local people call it Burjgala and it is still in a decent condition and can be toured.

    Another page in the history of the proud village is Ilisu's Great Mosque that was built in 1700. One of the most valuable local monuments is 4 meters high and has no minarets.

    As you can see, this small village with its one single street has seen different times. It is now enjoying a calm countryside life. You can also visit nearby villages and historic places while staying here as they are all compactly located.

    If you could not book a local hotels, guests house and pension before your visit, do not get upset, as locals would kindly suggest their houses to tourists, which will acquaint you with the village even more.

    You could not avoid tasting local cuisine after drinking cold spring water here.

    Bear in mind that there are lots of cuisines which are filling. There are 35 pasta dishes in Ilisu, greens, dairy products and honey on the tables here. You can spoil your fitness here, as the mountain air will make you hungry all the time. Nevertheless, try Surhullu and Girs, the most popular pasta dish mainly eaten in cold weather.

    I hope you can visit such a nice place soon. If you have questions about the places, please feel free to write to me at nigar@azer
  • Turkish PM ErdoДџan accuses Israel of blocking humanitarian aid to Gaza
    26.07.2014 10:29
    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip ErdoДџan has accused Israel of preventing the transfer of humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip.

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip ErdoДџan has accused Israel of preventing the transfer of humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip, in his latest verbal salvo against Tel Aviv, as the death toll from the military campaign in Gaza rises to more than 845 people, Hurriyet Daily reports.

    "The barbaric massacre that Israel has launched in Gaza is going on at full speed. The United Nations is silent about the massacre; furthermore, it is encouraging Israel," ErdoДџan said on July 25, delivering a speech in the Central Anatolian province of EskiЕџehir during the inauguration of the Ankara-Istanbul high-speed railway line.

    "You see those mothers, don't you? There are almost 800 martyrs in Gaza. At the moment, we are having difficulty in sending even humanitarian aid. We shall send medicine and food, but it [Israel] is trying to prevent even that. But we will reach out to there sooner or later," he added.

    In Cairo on the same day, after holding several meetings with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Egyptian officials aimed at ending the conflict, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called for an immediate "humanitarian pause" in the fighting in Gaza, lasting through the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr.

    ErdoДџan, meanwhile, also suggested that an "immoral" smear campaign had been launched against him both inside the country and abroad, attempting to portray of him as an anti-Semite.

    "They are conducting an immoral campaign by distorting our remarks both inside and abroad and trying to show us as anti-Semitic. But I am perhaps the first prime minister in the world to say that anti-Semitism is a crime against humanity," he said.

    He also added, however, that European officials had so far been reluctant to label Islamophobia as a crime against humanity in the same way as anti-Semitisim.

    The remarks came only a day after a Jewish American group asked ErdoДџan to return an award it gave him in 2004, accusing the Turkish leader of "dangerous rhetoric" and "inciting violence against the Jewish people."

    In an open letter to ErdoДџan on July 24, Jack Rosen, the president of the American Jewish Congress, said the Turkish prime minister had become "arguably the most virulent anti-Israel leader in the world."

    ErdoДџan, who is campaigning to be elected president next month, has spoken out strongly against the ongoing military operations in Gaza, accusing Israel of committing "genocide" and "barbarism surpassing Hitler."
  • ''The Economist'' publishes article about Azerbaijan Summit 2015
    26.07.2014 10:24
    ''The Economist'' magazine has issued an article titled ''Azerbaijan Summit 2015: Growth and development opportunities in a nation in transition''.

    The article reads: "Rapidly shifting geopolitical trends have placed Azerbaijan in the heart of a region exposed to multiple external influences and pressures. However, the nation has remained largely immune to these, choosing instead to remain economically and politically nonaligned. The government continues to focus on its strategy of economic diversification and development plans and appears open to collaboration with multiple partners.

    Investment relations with Turkey - the government-owned entities continue to make strategic acquisitions across Europe and beyond.

    Despite challenges arising from plateauing energy revenues, Azerbaijan's external investments have been bolstered by one of the world's largest trade surpluses. The country is one of the largest foreign investors in Turkey and government-owned entities continue to make strategic acquisitions across Europe and beyond."
  • Islamic Development Bank allocates three million euros for water project in Iran
    26.07.2014 10:19
    Baku, Azerbaijan, July 26

    By Umid Niayesh - Trend:

    The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) allocated a 2.92 million euro loan for a water project in Iran's north-eastern Golestan Province.

    Iran's economy council has approved the loan and the implementation of the project will start after the energy ministry's approval, managing director of the province's Water Company, Iraj Heidarian said, the country's official IRNA news agency reported on July 26.

    Commenting on the issue, Heidarian said that the project includes completing Negarestan dam and constructing water channels to transfer water from a dam to 29,000 hectares of agricultural lands.

    The IDB has paid more than three billion euros to Iran for implementing its projects so far, of which 70 percent were spent on dam building, water and wastewater projects of the energy ministry.

    The Islamic Development Bank is a multilateral development financing institution which was founded in 1973 by the Finance Ministers at the first Organisation of the Islamic Conference (now called the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation).

    There are 56 shareholding member-states. Iran holds some 9.32 percent of the bank's share.

    The purpose of the bank is to foster the economic development and social progress of member- countries and Muslim communities both individually and jointly in accordance with the principles of Shariah i.e., Islamic Law.

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Exchange Rates of Central Bank