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Everything posted by Spezzatura

  1. Some people in New York are wondering whether the presence of police officers toting machine guns through the city's subway tunnels is really a necessary response to the subway bombings in Moscow on Monday. "I think it's ridiculous," Torey Deprisest, a tourist from Ohio, told the New York Post. "The attack happened in a different country and had nothing to do with Americans. I'd be nervous seeing cops with machine guns on the train. It makes people afraid when they don't need to be." Queens resident Holly Celentang described the police response as excessive. "It's Easter this week, and you have families with young kids on the subway, and I'm sure cops with machine guns would scare them," she said. "I feel there should have been a bit more of a thought process before they did this." "By the time most people awoke to news of yesterday's twin terror blasts that killed dozens, the NYPD had flooded city subways with extra cops," the New York Daily News reports. "Officers with bomb-sniffing dogs swept train cars, and cops set up tables near turnstiles to do random bag checks." NYPD Deputy Commissioner Paul Browne told the Daily News that the measures are "simply a precaution," and said there was "no indication that the Moscow bombings were related to anything planned against the New York City subway system." Russian authorities are preliminarily pinning the blame for the twin suicide bombings in Moscow -- which at last count took the lives of 39 people on Monday morning -- on the "Black Widows," a militant group composed of the wives, daughters and sisters of Chechens who were killed at the hands of Russian forces during Chechnya's long-running war of secession. Some New Yorkers say they support the added security measures, even if they are a response to something unrelated to New York. "Better overkill than under-response," Joe Kerick of New Jersey told the Post. "If the terrorists see an under-response, they may think we are vulnerable." _http://rawstory.com/rs/2010/0330/riders-question-nypd-ridiculous-show-force/_
  2. В распространенном заявлении руководитель офиса второго президента Виктор Согомонян, в частности, подчеркнул, что Нагорный Карабах был исключен из переговорного процесса еще за год до избрания Роберта Кочаряна президентом, в 1997 году. «За весь отмеченный период только однажды (в 1993 году) были проведены отдельные переговоры между фактическим лидером Нагорного Карабаха Робертом Кочаряном и президентом Азербайджана Гейдаром Алиевым, однако эта встреча несла конфиденциальный характер. Еще одна встреча с участием президентов Армении, Карабаха и Азербайджана была организована при посредничестве министра иностранных дел России А.Козырева в Москве, если не ошибаюсь, в 1995 году. Однако этот формат также не получил продолжения. Таким образом, переговорный формат с участием представителей Нагорного Карабаха прекратил свое существование еще за год до избрания Роберта Кочаряна президентом», - говорится в заявлении. Затем Согомонян отметил, что встречи и переговоры между президентами Армении и Азербайджана проводились периодически, начиная с 1990 года, параллельно с Минским процессом. «Левон Тер-Петросян вел переговоры и с Аязом Муталибовым, и с Абудьфазом Эльчибеем, и с Гейдаром Алиевым». «Это всем известные исторические факты. Прежде чем разглагольствовать о переговорном процессе, об «ошибках» Кочаряна и их «гениальном» исправлении, следовало бы получше ознакомиться с вопросом. Сказанное мною, в первую очередь, относится к партийным деятелям», - заявил Виктор Согомонян. Он также отметил, что «Роберт Кочарян, который имеет статус первого президента Нагорного Карабаха, решительно отверг даже возможность замены властей Карабаха в формате встреч президентов». «Постоянно подчеркивалось, что ничто не может считаться окончательно согласованным, пока Карабах не даст на это своего согласия, а окончательный документ должен быть ратифицирован также и представителями Нагорного Карабаха». _http://www.azatutyun.am/content/article/1996800.html_
  3. Samvel Babayan, a former military leader of Nagorno-Karabakh, warned on Tuesday of a growing threat of another Armenian-Azerbaijani war which he said may break out “at any moment.” “Things are moving towards the war path because Azerbaijan has the impudence to demand everything and refuse to give up anything,” Babayan told a news conference. “This suggests that it is pushing for war.” “The situation is really dangerous. The war can start at any moment,” he said. Babayan, who led Karabakh Armenian forces during much of their successful 1991-1994 war with Azerbaijan, claimed that the only factor that has prevented renewed fighting so far is what he called a lack of Azerbaijani self-confidence. “Azerbaijan realizes that if it restarts the war and fails on the battlefield, it will lose not just 13-20 percent of its territory but maybe 50 percent and that no mediator will be able to stop that,” he said. “Mindful of that, it realizes that it should prepare for the battle very well.” The remarks contrasted with a statement made by Armenia’s Karabakh-born Defense Minister Seyran Ohanian last week. Ohanian, who was also a wartime Karabakh military commander, told RFE/RL’s Armenian service that another war with Azerbaijan is unlikely at this juncture. He earlier dismissed continuing Azerbaijani threats to take back Karabakh and Azerbaijani territories surrounding it by force. Babayan, who has been based in Yerevan since 2005, again predicted that the Karabakh peace process will remain deadlocked in the years ahead. He also said the international mediators’ recently modified plan to end the Armenian-Azerbaijani dispute favors Azerbaijan and will therefore be rejected by Armenia. “As far as I know, [President] Serzh Sarkisian will not opt for such mutual concessions,” said Babayan. He claimed that the mediators’ existing proposals are very similar to their 1997 peace plan that called for Armenian withdrawal from occupied Azerbaijani districts and indefinitely delayed agreement on Karabakh’s status. Then Armenian President Levon Ter-Petrosian was forced by his key ministers and the Karabakh Armenian leadership to resign after advocating that plan. _http://www.azatutyun.am/content/article/1998091.html_
  4. Kaveh L Afrasiabi Over the weekend, Iran hosted the presidents of Iraq, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan to celebrate Nowruz, the ancient Persian new year marking the first day of spring that is celebrated by some 300 million people around the world who together form an important cultural bloc. Both Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and President Mahmud Ahmadinejad used the occasion to emphasize the importance of Nowruz in fostering a global climate of peace and cooperation. _http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/LC30Ak01.html_
  5. Мустафа приехал из кишлака в Берлин. Мустафа родной кишлак захватил с собой. _http://www.lenta.ru/news/2010/03/29/schulen/_
  6. Kurds Insult turks with a token of kindness? A town in Trabzon known for its nationalist sentiment has been divided in two by the recent donation of a fire truck from Diyarbakır, a mainly Kurdish province. Because the Black Sea town of Çayırbası did not have a working fire truck, the mayor asked for one from Diyarbakır municipality. “Diyarbakır is also a municipality of this country. We needed and they gave. If we had more, we would give to them as well,” said Mayor Hilmi Koroglu, of the ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP. The truck, however, has divided locals, with some objecting to the donation while others lamenting those who have complained about Diyarbakır’s gesture. A bomb threat was made against the truck on the day it arrived two months ago, indicating the strong stance some have taken against the donation. Others, however, said there was no problem in having the truck, which has already extinguished six fires since arriving. “That place is our country too. We needed it and a municipality donated it. Is it a crime?” said Bahri Kalıntas, a local. _http://tckr.org/?p=3027_
  7. Дарил мячи и, понимаешь, насиловал несовершеннолетних. <http://www.lenta.ru/news/2010/03/27/detain/>
  8. EHRAN–Iran will start exporting natural gas to Armenia next week through a recently constructed pipeline, according to the Director of the National Iranian Gas Export Company, Seyyed Reza Kasaiizadeh, the Tehran Times reported on Monday. Kasaiizadeh on Monday said he would be leaving for Armenia immediately at the head of a delegation to attend the opening ceremony of the Iran-Armenia gas pipeline, which was completed last December. “Armenia has expressed its readiness to receive Iranian gas and one of the main goals of the trip is to finalize the export of gas to Armenia,” he said. Thus far the pipeline had remained inactive, with Armenian leaders saying there was yet no need to active it. The bulk of the Iranian gas that will begin flowing to Armenia is to be converted into electricity at local thermal-power plants that would then be exported back to the Islamic Republic. Kasaiizadeh said the pipeline has a diameter of 30 inches and runs for 113 kilometers from Iranian Tabriz to the Iran-Armenia border. He added that the volume of gas exports could rise to 4 million cubic meters a day in 2011 and to 6.3 million cubic meters a day afterwards. The news comes a month after Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian visited Tehran for two days of negotiations that ended with the signing of eight agreements emphasizing the two countries’ commitments to further deepening their relations with more multimillion-dollar infrastructure, transport, and energy projects. ссылка
  9. PKK Leader Says Seeking Equality Not Kurdish State KANDIL, Northern Iraq (Combined Sources)—The Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) wants a mutual cease-fire and hopes this will be followed by peace talks with the Turkish government, Turkish media reported on Wednesday, quoting its acting leader, Murat Karayilin. The PKK is no longer seeking a separate state, but wants equal rights for Kurds in a united Turkey, said Karayilin, who assumed power after the organization’s top leader, Abdullah Ocalan, was captured by Turkish security forces. “We now say ‘Democratic Autonomous Kurdistan.’ By autonomous, we don’t mean a federation. This leaves no need for redrawing borders and maintains the unitary nature of the state. The local administrative law should be changed and local administrations empowered,” he added. Karayilin said the PKK uses armed conflict only for legitimate defensive purposes. “We are not the PKK of 10 years ago,” he said. “We do not engage in armed conflict using the classic methods. We use armed conflict within the limits of legitimate defense. For the last four years we have been in a limited war.” Karayilin said around 17,000 extra judicial murders have been committed against Kurds and there is an ongoing policy of denial by the Turkish government. According to Hurriyet, Karayilin said the PKK has also engaged in some improper acts and that is why a community-outreach project is needed, in which both sides have to forgive each other. He reportedly also called for a new constitution. “Our desire is that Kurds should be able to live their culture freely,” said Karayilin, adding that a Kurdish conference like the one held recently in northern Iraq could help lay the groundwork for a future solution. Lack of political will has left little resemblance between the Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of today and the Erdogan of 2005, said Karayilin, referring to remarks the prime minister made during a speech that year in the southeastern city of Diyarbakir. “The Kurdish problem is our problem too,” Erdogan said. “The state too has committed mistakes on this subject and they will be rectified.” Karayilin said no trace of that sentiment is left today. “I can’t be optimistic,” he said. “There is no political will in regard to the Kurdish problem. This is a serious problem. Today even the generals are speaking differently, but where is the political will? Where is the prime minister who said those words in 2005? Where is the Erdogan who, when he was Istanbul mayor in 1994, prepared a Kurdish report and presented it to the leader of his party?” said Karayilin. The PKK has been under assault by the Turkish military since 1984, when they began calling for equal rights. The conflict has claimed thousands of lives. Turkey, the United States and the European Union list the PKK as a terrorist organization. ссылка
  10. Решение было принято в связи с простотой конфигурации заказа Первый гражданский самолет Sukhoi Superjet 100, изготовленный на продажу, будет продан армянской авиакомпании "Армавиа". Об этом, как сообщает агентство "Интерфакс", заявила директор по связям с общественностью компании "Гражданские самолеты Сухого" Ольга Каюкова. По ее словам, модель уже находится в окончательной стадии сборки и вскоре будет поставлена национальному авиаперевозчику Армении. Она отметила, что решение о том, кому поставить первую модель гражданского самолета, принималось исходя из конфигурации заказа. "Это зависит от ряда вещей - конфигурация определяется заказчиком, и чем она проще, тем проще изготовить первый самолет", - пояснила Каюкова. Цена Superjet 100 по каталогу составляет 28 миллионов долларов, однако в каждом конкретном случае стоимость заказа оговаривается отдельно, при этом оплата идет авансированием. По словам Каюковой, всего на сегодняшний день заказано 98 самолетов Superjet 100. Тридцать из них приходится на долю "Аэрофлота", 10 заказов принадлежат итальянским компаниям. Все самолеты семейства SSJ-100 соответствуют мировым тенденциям создания экологически чистых самолетов, сочетают операционную гибкость регионального самолета с возможностями магистрального лайнера, имеют улучшенные технические и операционные характеристики, которые делают Superjet 100 конкурентоспособным проектом для глобального рынка. ссылка
  11. A long to-do list awaits diplomacy’s new chief ANKARA - With a Cabinet reshuffle whose new headline talent is "Strategic Depth" with author Ahmet Davutoğlu for foreign minister, Prime Minister Erdoğan signals a search for an expanded role for Turkey in the wider region. Yet a long list of challenges awaits Davutoğlu abroad and at home Comfortable as a behind-the-scenes figure of Turkish foreign policy, Ahmet Davutoğlu will surely need some time to adapt to his new position, which will require a lot of protocol, meeting with press and handling practical problems his ministry faces. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s chief foreign policy adviser, Professor Davutoğlu, was appointed foreign minister late Friday as part of a large Cabinet reshuffle. Despite pressure by Erdoğan, Davutoğlu had always veered away from work in Parliament or the Cabinet as he wanted to return to academia. Author of "Strategic Depth," Davutoğlu was known as the architect of Turkey’s current foreign policy, aiming at making Turkey "a regional and global actor." Davutoğlu to both Gül and Erdoğan When Abdullah Gül was elected president in 2002, Davutoğlu became the chief adviser of the Prime Ministry. He has maintained his post during Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s term, thus known for his close ties with both leaders. He has represented Turkey in many international platforms and took active roles during the European Union talks, Cyprus negotiations and Iraq war. Davutoğlu, who accompanied Gül on his historic visit to Yerevan in September, was also in the forefront of a recent government initiative to normalize relations with Armenia. Davutoğlu came under the spotlight after his secret meeting with Hamas leader Halid Meşal in the winter of 2006. Since then he has gained a reputation for being the upper hand in shaping Turkey’s foreign policy, and is often depicted as the "Shadow Man" or the "Kissenger of Turkish diplomacy" by experts. "Turkey is no longer a country that only reacts to crises, but notices the crises before they emerge and intervenes in the crises effectively and gives shape to the order of its surrounding region," Davutoğlu told reporters Saturday during the handover ceremony. With a stronger foreign policy vision toward the Middle East, Balkans and Caucasus, Turkey will surely expand its role in this mentioned geography, he said. He underlined that the country’s fundamental foreign policy principle of Western orientation will remain the same and that Turkey will continue its efforts to become a part of the EU. His appointment has also been welcomed by many diplomats of the Foreign Ministry. "His appointment is a good one. He has a strategic view and is a theoretician. He knows the presidency, prime ministry and foreign ministry very well and he has direct access to all," a senior Turkish diplomat told the Hürriyet Daily News & Economic Review over the weekend. "But there will also be duties he will not like very much, such as appointments in the ministry and responsibilities concerning the protocol." The diplomat pointed out that Davutoğlu will need to first deal with the domestic problems of the ministry, inherited by his predecessor, to be able to deal with the heavy load of the foreign policy. Appointments to the critical positions and embassies stand at the top of his to-do list. As the tenures of Gürcan Türkoğlu, the president’s foreign policy adviser, and Ali Yakıtal, the prime minister’s adviser are expiring, Davutoğlu should consider who to appoint to these important seats. Furthermore, there are three important general directories, namely Africa and the Caucasus desks and the intelligence and security desk, in the ministry that await an appointment. As part of appointments, Davutoğlu will have to find suitable names to appoint as ambassadors to Oman, Estonia and Switzerland. That is to be coupled with a new general-secretary for the EU as Oğuz Demiralp has also concluded his term. ссылка
  12. Russian moves in the Southern Caucasus Only a few days before NATO's military training exercise in Georgia, Russia signed, on Thursday, joint border protection agreements with the former Georgian breakaway republics of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. The agreements were signed in the Kremlin by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Abkhazian President Sergei Bagapsh and South Ossetian President Eduard Kokoity. Under the agreements, Russia will guard and control the Abkhaz and South Ossetian borders, including maritime frontiers. The agreements give effective control of the Georgian borders with the breakaway republics to the Russian forces. So, it is very significant and important. Of course, the signed agreements are the latest moves by Russia to strengthen and consolidate its growing military power in the South Caucasus in general, which is focused presently on Abkhazia and South Ossetia. In fact, Russia has already set up land bases in Abkhazia and South Ossetia, which was confirmed by the commander of Russia's ground forces, Gen. Vladimir Boldyrev, on March 20. He said that the so-called fourth and seventh military bases would be ready to host tactical exercises by the end of 2009. In addition to these land bases, Russia is also planning to deploy military aircraft to a base in Abkhazia, near Gudauta. The base in question is the Bombora Air Base, which is the largest military airfield in the Southern Caucasus. Bombora is strategically very important not only because of its four-kilometer-long runway, but also because of its closeness to the sea. In fact, the runway ends less than 100 meters from the sea, allowing aircraft to take off at very low altitudes over the sea and fly undetected by enemy radar in the initial stages of flight. During the war in 2008, Russian airborne troops landed in Bombora and proceeded to western Georgia to fight against the Georgian army. Now, according to various sources, Russia is planning to deploy some 20 aircraft, including a wing of the Sukoy-27s (Flankers in NATO terminology), a squadron of the Sukoy-25s (Frogfoot) attack aircraft and several Antonov-26 (Curl) military transport aircraft. Other than the base in Bombora, Russia is planning to establish a Black Sea naval base in the Abkhaz port of Ochamchire. In fact, this was confirmed by the Abkhaz leader Bagapsh last January. Then he had said no signed treaty existed on the matter, but an agreement was reached that the construction of the base would start this year and it would be done within the framework of a comprehensive treaty on friendship and cooperation. Ochamchire is an important port about 60 kilometers southeast of the Abkhaz capital of Sukhumi, near the cease-fire line established after the last war with Georgia. When stationed there, Russian warships would essentially control the Georgian territorial waters all the way to the Turkish border. In addition to this, the Georgian ports of Poti and Batumi would become very vulnerable in terms of the Russian navy's striking capability from the planned base in Ochamchire. This, of course, would provide Russia with an advantage -- the future intimidation of Georgia. When Ochamchire becomes operational, it will also provide the Russian navy with a new but limited alternative to Sevastopol, the main base of the Russian Black Sea Fleet on the Crimean coast of Ukraine, which wants the Russian navy to quit the base when the bilateral agreement expires in 2017. Ochamchire will be a limited alternative to Sevastopol because it is relatively small; its waters are shallow and it does not have a protected bay. Nevertheless, it will serve as a key forward supply base for the Russian navy, seaborne special troops and marines deployed in the Black Sea region, as well as a strong naval deterrent against Georgia. With the establishment of land, air and naval bases in Abkhazia, including the already present 3,700 Russia troops, Russia clearly aims to consolidate its military muscle in the Southern Caucasus and the Black Sea not only for setting up a credible and formidable deterrence against Georgia, but also to change the balance of power in the region. ссылка
  13. В Стамбуле вооруженный боевик убил полицейского и случайного прохожего прежде, чем был сам ликвидирован сотрудниками спецслужб, сообщает AP со ссылкой на министра внутренних дел Турции Бесира Аталая (Besir Atalay). Также преступнику удалось ранить семерых полицейских и телеоператора. По данным министра, убитого боевика звали Орхан Йылмазкая (Orhan Yilmazkaya), он был одним из трех руководителей террористической группировки, связанной с сепаратистами из Рабочей партии Курдистана. При нем обнаружили множество боеприпасов, в том числе мины-ловушки. Боевик стал оказывать сопротивление силовикам, когда те проводили рейд в жилом доме в стамбульском районе Бостанджи (Bostanci). Террорист бросил в полицейских два взрывных устройства. В ходе пятичасовой перестрелки преступник связался с полицией по рации и сообщил, что принадлежит к организации "Революционный штаб" (Revolutionary Headquarters); эти переговоры транслировались по турецкому телевидению. "Я боец и буду сражаться до конца, - заявил боевик. - Меня, скорее всего, убьют, но наша борьба против фашизма и терроризма будет продолжаться". Он использовал выражение "братство людей", с помощью которого турецкие "левые" выражают свою солидарность с курдами. Министр внутренних дел Турции заявил, что экстремисты из "Революционного штаба" ранее совершали нападения на военные объекты и офис правящей Партии справедливости и развития. Всего в ходе 60 ночных рейдов, проведенных стамбульской полицией, были задержаны 40 человек, однако больше вооруженных столкновений не происходило. 11 задержанных также являются членами "Революционного штаба", заявил Аталай. Антитеррористические рейды были проведены перед Днем международной солидарности трудящихся: по данным властей, экстремистские группировки планировали провести в этот день теракты. В 1980 году 1 мая перестало быть выходным днем в Турции, однако на прошлой неделе правительство страны вновь объявило эту дату государственным праздником, уступив давлению со стороны профсоюзов. ссылка
  14. AZERBAIJAN: BEYOND ENERGY EXPORTS, THE GLOBAL DOWNTURN IS BATTERING LOCAL INDUSTRY Text by Shahin Abbasov The global downturn is punishing Azerbaijan’s third largest city, Sumgayit, a onetime center for the Soviet military-industrial complex that is still struggling to find its stride in the global economy. Sumgayit’s industrial base has been ravaged by the combined effects of sharply lower energy prices and the contraction of credit. Factory employees, who asked not to be named, told EurasiaNet that all five of the state-owned chemical company Azerkimya’s plants and the state-owned Azerboru pipe factory in the city stopped production in early March. Another industrial giant, Azeraluminum, which produces 70 percent of Sumgayit’s annual industrial output, is working at just 15 percent of its usual capacity, producing only 25 tons of primary aluminum per month. A worker from Azerkimya’s synthetic rubber plant said that more than 1,000 of its 1,400 employees have been sent on unpaid leave, adding that salaries have not been paid since January. "The situation is similar at the other four Azerkimya plants," he said. "We do not know how the situation will develop further and have no idea what we should do." Azerkimya employs more than 7,500 people in Sumgayit, a city of about 305,000 people located 30 kilometers from the Azerbaijani capital, Baku. Official statistics confirm that Azerbaijan’s chemical industry is experiencing a severe decline. Azerkimya’s production dropped by 72.5 percent between February 2008 and February 2009, while its exports decreased 8.5 times, according to the State Statistics Committee. Economist Rasim Huseynov claims that Azerkimya’s plants have four months’ worth of production left unsold, data that is confirmed by the State Statistics Committee. Representatives of Azerkimya did not respond to written questions from EurasiaNet about its troubles. Company officials originally requested the questions in writing after a EurasiaNet correspondent approached them with interview requests. At Azeraluminum, executives are predictably attributing the plant’s troubles to the worldwide economic crisis. A company employee told EurasiaNet that only 200 of the plant’s 1,000 Sumgayit employees are still working, although salaries have not been paid since January. Three-hundred-and-forty workers have been on unpaid leave since April 1 and all 700 of the company’s employees in the city of Ganja have also been laid off. Azerboru, the pipe-making factory, has sent all but 146 of its 1,146 Sumgayit employees on unpaid leave, according to several employees. They added that they had not been paid in months. Like Azerkimya, Azerboru management did not respond to submitted written questions about the factory’s situation. Even before the latest closures, Sumgayit had been familiar with economic hardship. So far, it does not seem as though surging local unemployment could produce social instability. Cameraman Vugar Mammadov, who lives in Sumgayit but works in Baku, said that no protests had taken place yet in the city. "It’s good that Sumgayit is located so close to Baku and a large part of the population works in the capital. It helps to reduce social tension," Mammadov said. Local workers, he added, have gotten used to delays with salaries and unpaid leaves. The risk of rising tension nonetheless persists, believes Zohrab Ismayilov, head of the Public Association for Assistance to a Free Economy, a Baku-based economic think-tank. "The simultaneous emergence of thousands of unemployed people is a serious problem for one city," Ismayilov said. Government support for low-interest loans and tax holidays, among other means would help create new jobs in Sumgayit, he suggested. Representatives of the Sumgayit city government stated only that the factories are not under their control and declined all further comment. Sumgayit’s woes are part of a larger unemployment problem. A source at the State Oil Company of the Azerbaijani Republic (SOCAR), Azerbaijan’s largest employer, told Turan news agency on April 23 that the government had ordered the company to dismiss men born in and before 1947 and women born in and before 1952. Salaries for the rest of SOCAR’s 65,000 employees will be slashed by 30 to 35 percent, the source said. SOCAR executives have not commented on the report. For now, official unemployment figures are comparatively modest, primarily because of the current preference for sending idle workers on unpaid leave. At an April 10 news conference, State Statistics Committee Chairman Arif Valiyev claimed that, technically speaking, only 6,000 jobs had been lost in Azerbaijan during the first quarter of 2009. He added that competition for jobs was also increasing; in February, five unemployed people were said to be competing for each job vacancy, compared with a three-to-one ration in September 2008. The government, for its part, has pledged support for the state-owned factories in Sumgayit. "The government should do its best to soften the social welfare problems of their workers," President Ilham Aliyev declared at an April 22 cabinet meeting. Wages, he added, should be paid "for several months ahead." The president did not identify the way to overcome the crisis in Azerbaijan’s chemical, aluminum and metallurgical industries, but pledged that "after the global crisis ends, the government will put additional investments into these industries." ссылка
  15. Два визита "Иран, Армения и Россия создают военно-стратегический союз", - говорит дипломат Р.ОРУДЖЕВ Как известно, на фоне весьма эмоциональных событий, происходящих в последнее время в регионе, в ближайшем будущем - 16-17 апреля президент Азербайджана Ильхам Алиев будет находиться с визитом в Москве по приглашению Дмитрия Медведева. Не менее интересно, что уже сейчас президент Армении Серж Саркисян находится в Тегеране с официальным визитом. И о чем свидетельствуют эти визиты, еще предстоит разобраться. "Укрепление связей с Арменией - один из приоритетов внешнеполитической деятельности Ирана", - заявил вчера президент Исламской Республики Махмуд Ахмадинеджад после встречи с армянским коллегой Сержем Саркисяном. Президенты двух стран беседовали сегодня около часа в тегеранском правительственном комплексе. Во время личной беседы главы двух государств отметили "глубокий и стабильный характер отношений между Арменией и Ираном". Президенты коснулись региональных и международных проблем, а также вопросов двусторонних отношений. М.Ахмадинеджад и С.Саркисян дали положительную оценку нынешнему состоянию отношений между Тегераном и Ереваном и высказались за дальнейшее развитие двусторонних связей в самых разных областях, в частности - в сферах торговли, транспорта, энергетики. Президенты отметили близость позиций двух стран по целому ряду региональных и международных проблем и заявили о том, что отношения между государствами региона должны основываться на доброжелательности и взаимоуважении. Ахмадинеджад назвал плодотворными состоявшиеся в Тегеране переговоры со своим армянским коллегой. Отметим, что это первый визит Саркисяна в Тегеран. М.Ахмадинеджад посетил Армению полтора года назад. Иран и Армения считают неприемлемым военное решение нагорно-карабахской проблемы - об этом было заявлено на встрече президентов Ирана и Армении. Саркисян по просьбе Ахмадинеджада проинформировал его о ходе армяно-турецкого политического диалога и переговорах по мирному урегулированию нагорно-карабахского конфликта. "Собеседники подчеркнули необходимость мирного решения всех существующих проблем путем переговоров, сочтя сотрудничество, мир и стабильность важнейшим залогом благополучия и процветания народов, проживающих в регионе", говорится в официальном сообщении. Президент Армении поблагодарил своего иранского коллегу за взвешенный подход официального Тегерана к вопросу урегулирования нагорно-карабахского конфликта. Кроме того, Махмуд Ахмадинеджад и Серж Саркисян обсудили вчера перспективы реализации совместных крупных инфраструктурных проектов, направленных на развитие взаимных торгово-экономических отношений. В частности, они обсудили строительство железной дороги Иран-Армения, двух ГЭС на реке Араз, а также вопросы углубления торговых отношений между странами. "Обсуждение крупных инфраструктурных программ является ярким свидетельством наших намерений по дальнейшему расширению и углублению дружественных отношений. Уверен, что достигнутые во время обсуждений договоренности перерастут в документы", - цитирует пресс-служба слова Саркисяна. Главы двух государств отметили существенную роль армянской общины Ирана в деле укрепления армяноиранской дружбы. В ходе визита Саркисяна в Иран ожидается подписание окончательного документа по строительству железной дороги Иран-Армения. Армения и Иран 3 апреля подписали предварительный меморандум о взаимопонимании по строительству прямого железнодорожного сообщения между двумя странами. Железная дорога Иран-Армения позволит Армении пользоваться альтернативным путем транспортировки энергоресурсов и других товаров, получив выход во внешний мир. В своем комментарии на эти темы экс-госсоветник, дипломат Вафа Гулузаде отметил, что "нашего президента приглашает в Москву Д.Медведев. И нашему президенту отказать ему неудобно. И он знает, зачем он туда едет. Этот визит не приведет к каким-либо серьезным последствиям, каких желала бы Россия. То есть Москва мечтает о восстановлении своего военного присутствия в Азербайджане. Она мечтает об этом с того момента, как вывела свои войска отсюда. Немного очухавшись, РФ начала просить Азербайджан восстановить ее военное присутствие в разных вариантах. Один вариант - ввести батальон русских военных в оккупированный Кяльбаджар, второй был озвучен во время визитов сюда Грачева и генерала Корнукова - предложение создать совместные ПВО и охрану азербайджанских границ, третье - предложение Евгения Примакова Азербайджану заключить военный союз с Арменией, несмотря на оккупацию наших земель. На все эти предложения Баку ответил - нет. Даже когда Азербайджан был намного слабее, и когда дело касалось наших национальных интересов, Гейдар Алиев никогда не соглашался ни на какие варианты, которые могли бы ущемить их. И то же самое делает Ильхам Алиев. Поэтому, коль скоро Д.Медведев просит, он поедет туда. Но соглашение на ввод российских миротворцев в два-три наших района И.Алиев не даст. Кроме того, вся возня с открытием турецко-армянской границы - это тоже российская инициатива. Но она абсолютно бесперспективна. Турция сделала вид, что она хочет этого, но на самом деле делать не будет. И не только из-за Нагорного Карабаха. Армения не отказывается от территориальных претензий к Турции, и заявляет, что она является виновницей "геноцида". Россия отказывается нести ответственность за деяния Советского Союза. Почему же тогда современная демократическая Турецкая Республика должна отвечать за то, что было или не было при Османской империи? Кроме того, резко против этого выступает Азербайджан, потому что речь идет о тех армянах, которые провели этнические чистки, массовые убийства и оккупацию территорий Азербайджана. Значит, поездка И.Алиева в Москву будет чисто протокольной. Он выслушает Медведева, скажет - "подумаю", и конечно, никакого согласия на предложения Москвы в итоге не даст". "Что же до визита Саркисяна, - продолжил политолог, - Иран является давним партнером Армении. Это именно он спас Армению, когда она рушилась. Иран поставлял горючее армянским танкам, когда у нас шла война. Поэтому если завтра Ахмадинеджад поедет в Ереван - удивляться этому не надо. Армяне постоянно ездят в Тегеран. В начале 90-х я по службе несколько раз ездил в Иран, и всякий раз там сталкивался то с министром экономики Армении, то с их министром иностранных дел, то с какой-то целой делегацией. У армян с иранцами очень развитые отношения - и экономические, и политические. Кроме того, новое заявление Ахмадинеджада о том, что Армения является стратегическим союзником Ирана - очень опасно. Россия тоже является стратегическим союзником Армении. Отсюда возникает военно-стратегический союз Россия-Армения-Иран. Это надо учитывать всем, и нашим друзьям, и нам самим". Комментируя визит армянского президента в Иран и главы МИД Армении в Туркменистан, другой политолог Ильгар Мамедов отметил, что в нынешней кризисной ситуации официальный Ереван будет проводить активную дипломатическую линию, передает 1news. "Армянское руководство внимательно отслеживает возможные изменения ситуации в регионе, сближение России и Турции, положение в Грузии и позицию Азербайджана. В Ереване понимают, что могут оказаться не удел в случае нахождения общего языка между Россией и Турцией по региональным вопросам. Поэтому вполне оправдано, что Армения стремится дипломатическими путями извлечь максимальную выгоду для собственных интересов и их защиты", - отметил политолог. "Армения находится в трудном положении, но не теряет надежды выйти из ситуации, в связи с чем выжимает из отношений с Ираном и Туркменистаном все необходимое для удержания на плаву в период финансово-экономического кризиса. Отмечу, что ситуация во многом в регионе прояснится по результатам предстоящих в Москве консультаций между руководством России, Турции и Азербайджана, после чего можно будет говорить о дальнейших векторах развития нашего региона. Отмечу, что это будут сложные переговоры, на которых намечено обсуждение поставок азербайджанского газа, ситуации вокруг разрешения карабахского конфликта и вопроса открытия турецко-армянской границы", - заключил Мамедов. ссылка
  16. Turkey, Armenia agree 'roadmap' on normalising ties ANKARA (AFP) - - Turkey and Armenia, troubled neighbours with no diplomatic ties, have agreed a "roadmap" on normalising relations in ongoing reconciliation talks, the Turkish foreign ministry said Wednesday. The talks, mediated by Switzerland and held away from public eye, had produced "concrete progress and mutual understanding," said the statement. "The two countries... have agreed on a comprehensive framework for the normalisation of bilateral ties in a way that will satisfy both sides. A roadmap has been determined in this context," it said. The progress achieved so far "provides a positive perspective for the ongoing process," it added, without elaborating on details of the agreement. Rare talks between the two neighbours, whose relations have been marred by a bloody history, gathered steam in September when President Abdullah Gul paid a landmark visit to Yerevan to watch a football match. It was the first such visit by a Turkish leader. A major issue on the agenda of the talks was the bitter dispute over whether the mass killings of Armenians by Ottoman Turks during World War I constituted a genocide. Turkey has refused to establish diplomatic ties with Armenia because of Yerevan's international campaign to have the killings recognized as genocide. Wednesday's statement came just ahead of April 24, the day on which Armenians remember their dead. In 1993, Turkey shut its border with Armenia in a show of solidarity with close ally Azerbaijan over the Nagorny Karabakh conflict, dealing a heavy economic blow to the impoverished Caucasian nation. Ankara has ruled out a deal with Armenia unless Yerevan resolves its conflict with Azerbaijan over Nagorny Karabakh. ссылка
  17. GENEVA – Dozens of Western diplomats walked out of a U.N. conference and a pair of rainbow-wigged protesters threw clown noses at Iran's president Monday when the hard-line leader called Israel the "most cruel and repressive racist regime." The United States decried the remarks by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as hateful — reinjecting tension into a relationship that had been warming after President Barack Obama sought to engage Iran in talks on its nuclear program and other issues. Ahmadinejad — the first government official to take the floor at the weeklong event in Geneva — delivered a rambling, half-hour speech that was by turns conciliatory and inflammatory. At one point he appealed for global unity in the fight against racism and then said the United States and Europe helped establish Israel after World War II at the expense of Palestinians. "They resorted to military aggression to make an entire nation homeless under the pretext of Jewish suffering," he said. Jewish groups had lobbied heavily for a boycott of the conference, warning it could descend into anti-Semitism or other anti-Israel rhetoric, which marred the last such conference eight years ago in South Africa. The meeting turned chaotic almost from the start when the two wigged protesters tossed the red clown noses at Ahmadinejad as he began his speech with a Muslim prayer. A Jewish student group from France said it had been trying to convey "the masquerade that this conference represents." One of the protesters shouted "You are a racist!" before he and the other demonstrator were taken away by security. Ahmadinejad interjected: "I call on all distinguished guests to forgive these ignorant people. They don't have enough information." During his speech, he accused Israel of being the "most cruel and repressive racist regime" and blamed the U.S. invasion of Iraq on a Zionist conspiracy. At the first mention of Israel, about 40 diplomats from Britain and France and other European Union countries exited the room. Most of his remarks were not new but their timing and high profile could complicate U.S. efforts to improve ties with Iran. Alejandro Wolff, the U.S. deputy ambassador to the U.N., denounced what he called "the Ahmadinejad spectacle." White House press secretary Robert Gibbs, asked by reporters about Ahmadinejad's remarks, replied: "Obviously, the president disagrees vehemently with what was said, as, from some of the video I saw, so did many others." Gibbs said it proved that the United States was right to boycott the conference. Germany, Italy and at least six other countries also refused to attend the event, which began on the eve of Israel's Holocaust Remembrance Day. "We call on the Iranian leadership to show much more measured, moderate, honest and constructive rhetoric when dealing with issues in the region, and not this type of vile, hateful, inciteful speech that we all saw," Wolff said at the U.N. in New York. Later, about 100 members of mainly pro-Israel and Jewish groups tried to block Ahmadinejad's entrance to a scheduled news conference. In a milder protest, Jewish groups outside the venue read out some of the names of the 6 million who died in the Holocaust. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon met with Ahmadinejad before his speech and said he had counseled the Iranian leader to avoid dividing the conference. Ban later said he was disappointed the speech was used "to accuse, divide and even incite," directly opposing the aim of the meeting. "It was a very troubling experience for me as a secretary-general," he said. "It was a totally unacceptable situation." The Israeli Foreign Ministry condemned the speech and Ban's meeting with Ahmadinejad. "It is unfortunate that U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon deemed it appropriate to meet with the greatest Holocaust denier of our time," the Foreign Ministry said. "This matter is especially severe, as it took place on the eve of Holocaust Memorial Day." Ahmadinejad has been praised by some in the Muslim world for his attacks on Israel. The hard-liner has often used international forums to criticize Israel. Most Muslim delegations in Geneva declined to comment, but Pakistan said the protesters were wrong to interrupt Ahmadinejad. "If we actually believe in freedom of expression, then he has the right to say what he wants to say," Ambassador Zamir Akram told The Associated Press. "There were things in there that a lot of people in the Muslim world would be in agreement with, for example the situation in Palestine, in Iraq and in Afghanistan, even if they don't agree with the way he said it." While the speech was interrupted several times by cheers from the large Iranian delegation, it may not be well-received among many others in Iran, which is suffering from high inflation and unemployment partly as a result of its global isolation. Many have criticized Ahmadinejad, who is up for re-election in June, for spending too much time on anti-Israel and anti-Western rhetoric and not enough on the country's economy. ссылка
  18. Мэрия Еревана отказала двум армянским оппозиционным партиям – "Гнчакян" и Коммунистической партии Армении – в проведении шествий на первомайских праздниках, сообщает 20 апреля информационный портал Hayinfo.ru со ссылкой на мэрию армянской столицы. По мнению чиновников, демонстранты затруднят движение на центральных улицах города и помешают народным гуляньям, намеченным на 1 и 2 мая. Социал-демократическая партия "Гнчакян" собирается митинговать 1 мая рядом с Институтом древних рукописей Матенадаран. КПА выйдет на площадь Степана Шаумяна 2 мая. Ни одна из партий пока не заявляла о том, что запрет на проведение демонстраций заставит их отказаться от митингов. Социал-демократическая партия "Гнчакян" входит в состав оппозиционного Армянского национального конгресса, который возглавляет экс-президент Армении Левон Тер-Петросян. По сведениям РИА Новости, Тер-Петросян будет участвовать в первомайских выступлениях оппозиции. 15 марта политический совет АНК принял решение о том, что Левон Тер-Петросян возглавит партийный список конгресса на выборах мэра Еревана, которые намечены на май. Выборы столичного главы пройдут впервые в истории. До недавнего времени мэр Еревана назначался указом президента страны. В феврале-марте 2008 года армянская оппозиция во главе с Тер-Петросяном вышла на улицы Еревана в знак несогласия с результатами президентских выборов на которых, согласно официальным данным, лидер АНК уступил Сержу Саргсяну. Тогда в столкновении с правоохранительными органами 10 человек погибли, 200 были ранены. ссылка
  19. Lifeline for Kars just across the border KARS - If trade is life, one could easily say the province of Kars in the northeast of the country is slowly losing its will to survive. While Turkey shut its border with Armenia as reparations to that country, the declining living standards, bankrupt economy and migration has left the people of Kars thinking they are the ones being punished. Since the closure of the border with Armenia in 1993, an act of solidarity with Azerbaijan, the city’s economic development was arrested just when it was so close to taking off. The collapse of the Soviet Union had opened many opportunities for the city that borders both Armenia and Georgia, that it believed it was destined to be the gateway to the Caucasus and to Central Asia beyond. Whomever one talks to in the city, an overwhelming desire to see the border with Armenia reopened is often followed with a cautious, "but." Once the hospitable people of this city start opening up though, the "but" becomes less intense. Locals want the border to be opened but their desire for the promised economic advantages are tempered by the possibility of them being accused of being "Armenian lackeys" because of the perception towards Armenians and nationalist pressure that has built up over the years. Kars Kafkas University Department of Economics president, Professor Mehmet Dikkaya, said ethnic divisions also played a part in the way people addressed the issue. "There are four main ethnic groups in the province. There are Kurds, Azerbaijanis, Karapalpaks and Turks," he said, Karapalpaks being a Turkic group with close ethnic links to the Kazakhs of Central Asia. "We can say that Azerbaijanis and Karakalpaks are against any border opening while Kurds and Turks welcome the move," Dikkaya said. He said the province was in dire straits in terms of its economic situation. "Kars has no trade potential. Of the 80,000 who live in the city, half have green cards," he said. Green cards provide free healthcare for the poor. The only sector that keeps more or less creeping along is the traditional sector of animal husbandry, he said, with the industry based on dairy products. Its organized industrial zone is dormant. If the border is opened, Kars will become a center on a trade route and its production sector will pick up. The province shares 325 kilometers of border with Armenia and has two border gates. Average annual loss of trade in $700 million since 1993. If the border opens, Turkish exports will increase by $400 million. If only 20 percent of this passes through Kars, this region will be a paradise," said Dikkaya. He said Turkish goods were widely consumed in Armenia. "According to a recent study of ours, Armenia purchases $100 million worth of Turkish goods a year and all of it go via Georgia and Iran. We have also learned that there is no disapproval of Turkish goods there," he said. Petition The former mayor of the city, Naif Alibeyoğlu, who lost in the March 29 local elections after switching allegiances from the ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP, to the opposition Republican People’s Party, or CHP, said he had collected a petition for the opening of the border during his term in office. "I collected 50,000 signatures in a city with a population of 80,000. The economic life of Kars has been suspended since 1993. As a municipality, we can’t even collect taxes from the locals." He said opening the border was the first step after which all bilateral problems between Armenia and Turkey would be resolved with subsequent steps. The prejudice Armenians feel toward Turks dies once they visit Kars, he said. "They told us they thought we were monsters. My granfather’s grandfather was killed by Armenians. There is no reason to keep bitter memories alive. Dialogue solves everything. Let’s open the border and start trading. The real trade embargo is on Kars, not Armenia, says Kars Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chairman Ali Güvensoy, noting that airplanes from Armenia frequently land in Istanbul, Antalya and other regions. "Turkish goods reach Armenia via Iran and Georgia and are sold more expensively. If there is an embargo, it is on Kars," he said. In explaining the industrial decline of the province, Güvensoy said the foundations of 44 factories were laid but only 23 were completed. "Nowadays, only 18 of them are operational and all 18 are focused on dairy products. There are a meat plant and a cement factory but after they were privatized, many workers were laid off. They will soon privatize the sugar factory," he said. The region’s economy is now centered on public servants, said Güvensoy, and added that most locals had begun to pack up and leave in order to make a living elsewhere. Still, he said, peace had to be established before the border was opened, adding, "We want access to Armenia but we need to make sacrifices and Armenia needs to withdraw from Nagorna-Karabakh." Güvensoy gave the neighboring province of Iğdır and its border gate Nahchivan as an example to what trade could accomplish. "Trade there is booming. If the border is opened, ours will too." Zeki Yağcı, a jewelry salesman for the last decade, wants the border to be opened. "Opening the border will attract investment and create opportunities for local businessmen. There is no commerce to speak of in our city. Iğdır used to be a district of Kars. Now it is a separate province and ahead of us. Why? Because there is cross-border trade there," he said. Businessman Özfer Koçal said the local economy thrived when the border with Armenia was open before 1993. "Closed borders help no one. If there is an embargo on Armenia, it should encompass everyone. There are flights to Yerevan from everywhere. There is trade from Trabzon and Hopa. This embargo is a way of punishing Kars," he said. Koçal also admitted that a certain environment was needed before the border could be opened. "Nagorno-Karabakh, genocide claims and demand for land. If Armenia forgoes these, the doors should be opened," he said. Shoe-shiner Hasan Perinçek sees the economic collapse first hand everyday, he said. "We definitely want the border to open. Here, the state is nowhere to be seen. Animal husbandry is the only way people earn a living. Let Armenia and Azerbaijan settle their own differences. The city is constantly shrinking because of all the economic hardship. The city will soon be empty. There are ’for sale’ signs everywhere. It seems like the city itself is for sale," he said. Calls for caution Shopkeeper Seyhan Karadeniz also wants the border to open. "There is no economy here. Winters are long and living is hard. If the border is opened, business will boom," he said. The fact that Armenians could go to Istanbul by plane while they couldn’t cross the border to Kars was a shame. However, he also said the border could not be opened before the Nagorno-Karabakh issue was resolved. Ahmet Sarar, who has been involved in textiles for the past 40 years, said the city was bankrupt but also noted that the historical animosity between Turks and Armenians could prove uncomfortable if the border was opened. "I have my doubts. If the border is opened, the rich there will purchase land here and their demands will increase. If the Armenians over here behaved, those across the border won’t," he said. The head of Kars’ Association for Supporting Contemporary Living, or ÇYDD, Vedat Akçaöz, who is also a journalist, said during his visit to Armenia he had realized that the prejudices there could be ended easily. "There, the elderly welcomed me and my associates as ’Kardaş’ [brother]. Unfortunately, the young are very prejudicial. A dialogue needs to be established as soon as possible," he said. "There is serious trade between Trabzon and Armenia. What kind of embargo is this? And furthermore, what is important for us is the regional Turkic republics beyond Armenia. We don’t want to be the end of a one-way street. We want to be the gateway to the east," he said. The opening of the border was just one part of a complicated matter, noted Akçaöz, adding that the public needed to be ready for what took place. "If an Armenian comes here and something untoward happened, everything could get even worse. There is that kind of potential here which should not be ignored. We cannot ignore Azerbaijan, the Nagorno-Bkarabakh issue and Armenia’s demands. If the border is opened before these problems are resolved, there will be chaos," he said. ссылка
  20. Nokia, the world's largest mobile phone maker, has reported a 90% fall in profits for the first quarter of 2009 The company said net profits sank to 122m euros ($160m; £108m) in the quarter, down from 1.2bn euros in the same period a year ago. The main reason for the slump was a dramatic fall in sales, which were down by almost a third. Nokia is implementing a cost-cutting drive during the economic downturn and announced 1,700 job cuts last month. Sales were down by 27% to 9.28bn euros in the quarter from 12.7bn euros a year ago, Nokia said. This included the proceeds from the sale of 93 million phones. "The macro [economic] environment is causing many people to trade down and purchase lower priced handsets," Nokia boss Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo said. 'Getting started' Financial analysts said the results were not as bad as some had feared and Nokia's share price rose almost 9%. "Although their performance was bad, it wasn't as bad as expected," said Neil Mawston at Strategy Analytics. "Everyone talked Nokia down, so there was general relief that things weren't that bad after all," he added. Nokia's share of the global handset market was 37%, down from 39% in the same quarter a year ago, but stable from the fourth quarter. The company has come under increased pressure from smart-phones such as the Blackberry and Apple's iPhone. In fact, Nokia has been criticised for being slow in developing more advanced phones. "Clearly we are just getting started," said Mr Kallavuso, before saying that Nokia aimed to gain a 20% market share in touch-screen handsets. He did not, however, give a timeframe to achieve this goal. Looking forward, the company said the outlook for the mobile phone market was improving. "It is too early to say that end-consumer demand has hit the bottom," said Mr Kallavuso. "But we believe the market is no longer falling in an uncontrolled manner." He did, however, predict that the global mobile phone market would contract by 10% in 2009. ссылка
  21. Russia angered by Nato exercises Russia has asked Nato to cancel or postpone military exercises that it plans to hold in Georgia next month. Moscow's envoy to Nato, Dmitry Rogozin, described the exercises, expected to involve 1,300 troops from 19 countries, as "absurd and a provocation". Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the exercises would not help develop stability in the Caucasus. Nato says the exercises were planned before last year's conflict between Russia and Georgia over South Ossetia. Georgia hopes eventually to join Nato, a move strongly opposed by Russia, which says the alliance's eastward expansion is a threat to its security. 'Impossible' Nato said the exercises, to be held some 20km (12 miles) east of Georgia's capital Tbilisi from 6 May to 1 June, would be non-aggressive and based on a fictitious UN-mandated, Nato-led crisis response operation. "There should really be no element of surprise for anyone," Nato spokesman Robert Pszczel said. "There is no heavy armour involved at all, it's just people." But Russia's ambassador to the military alliance dismissed the claim. "This is absurd and a provocation," Mr Rogozin told the Reuters news agency. "I have asked the Nato Secretary General [Jaap de Hoop Scheffer]... to postpone these exercises or to cancel them." Mr Rogozin said military co-operation between Russia and Nato was still frozen as a result of last summer's South Ossetia conflict and that Moscow's position would not change before a forthcoming ministerial meeting in May. He also rejected Nato's argument that the exercises had been planned last year. "A war is a 'force majeure'," he said. "To hold military exercises in a country where a war has just ended is impossible." The ambassador also said the exercises could be exploited by Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili in his stand-off with opposition parties, which have recently held a series of mass protests. The opposition accuses him of mishandling the war with Russia, during which Georgia's attempts to regain control of the breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia were repelled by Russian forces. Under an EU-sponsored ceasefire, monitors were sent to Georgia. But thousands of Russian troops remain in both breakaway regions. ссылка
  22. YEREVAN Armenia's Foreign Minister, Edward Nalbnadian, reiterated on Thursday his government's strong opposition to direct Turkish involvement in international efforts to settle the Nagorno Karabakh conflict, ArmRadio reported. “Turkey will not play the role of a mediator in the Karabakh peace process,” Nalbandian said in a joint press conference in Yerevan with Azerbaijan's Deputy Foreign Minister Mahmud Mamedguliev. “The Nagorno-Karabakh negotiations are underway between Armenia, Azerbaijan and Nagorno Karabakh within the framework of the OSCE Minsk Group and with the support of the [Minsk Group] co-chairs,” Nalbandian said Mamedguliev, in contrast, reaffirmed Baku's strong opposition to the normalization of Turkish-Armenian relations before Karabakh peace. “Our position is the following: the restoration of links between Turkey and Armenia may only be conditional on the resolution of the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan,” he said. Nalbandian and Mamedguliev were speaking to journalists after the meeting of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC) organization in Yerevan. Western and Turkish media had speculated that the Armenian Foreign Minister and his visiting Turkish counterpart, Ali Babacan, would use the meeting to announce an agreement on a gradual normalization of Turkish-Armenian relations. But that announcement never came. The recent rapprochement between Turkey-Armenia has hit a major bump in recent weeks, with Ankara echoing Baku's stern opposition to the establishment of diplomatic relations with Yerevan before a resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Babacan refrained from making any public statements to that tune during his one-day trip, which ended with a meeting with President Serzh Sarkisian. He did, however, reaffirm the linkage between the Karabakh conflict and the establishment of diplomatic ties with Yerevan as he spoke to CNN-Turk television on his way to Yerevan. According to the Turkish Hurriyet Daily News, he said the Turkish-Armenian dialogue must run parallel with international efforts to settle the Karabakh conflict. ссылка
  23. В рамках развития единой региональной системы противовоздушной обороны Россия поставит Белоруссии новейшие зенитные ракетные системы С-400 "Триумф", сообщает РИА новости. Об этом заявил первый замглавкома ВВС РФ генерал-лейтенант Вадим Волковицкий. Даты поставки Волковицкий не назвал. Он лишь отметил, что переговоры с белорусской стороной все еще ведутся. О том, что РФ разместит С-400 на территории Белоруссии 8 апреля заявил командующий ВВС и войсками ПВО Вооруженных сил Белоруссии генерал-майор Игорь Азаренок. Официального подтверждения этой информации до заявления Волковицкого не поступало. Москва и Минск заключили соглашение о совместной охране внешней границы Союзного государства и создании Единой региональной системы противовоздушной обороны в феврале 2009 года. Ожидается, что в боевой состав единой системы ПВО войдут пять авиационных частей, десять зенитно-ракетных частей, пять радиотехнических частей и одна часть радиоэлектронной борьбы. ЗРС "Триумф" способны уничтожать самолеты, выполненные с применением технологии "стелс", а также крылатые и оперативно-тактические ракеты на дальности до 400 километров. ссылка
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