Politics

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The International Criminal Court in Hague noted the claim against the second Armenian president, Robert Kocharyan, press-service of Armenian oppositional national congress reports.The congress reported on June 3rd that they filed a suit to the Hague court against Kocharyan due to the events of 1-2 March 2008, when the police and supporters of Levon Ter-Petrosyan, who lost the presidential elections, had fights, leading to 10 people dead. On 1st August 2008 Ter-Petrosyan established the Armenian national congress.

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A special operation aimed at neutralizing militants in the Pliyevo municipal district of Nazran was accomplished and two members of illegal armed formations were killed, Interfax reports, citing the official spokesman of the FSB (Security Service) department in Ingushetia.The criminals were driving a car along one of the city's streets when they were blocked by special police forces. They were killed attempting to use force against the police. The police found arms and ammunition.

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Tbilisi will start negotiations on July 15th on associate membership of Georgia in the EU. Georgia expects the arrival of a high-ranking delegation from the EU, Mikhail Saakashvili said on Tuesday at a session of the National Security Council of Georgia, Interfax reports.He also said that they plan talks on the free-market agreement with EU in autumn. Saakashvili recalled that Georgia and the EU have an agreement simplifying the visa regime between them, which comes into force in the second half of 2010.

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Turkey, Russia and Ukraine are establishing an alliance of the BlackSea defense agreement, ‘Nasha Versiya’ reports. The head of theTurkish Armed Forces HQ, Army General Ilker Bashbug, will visit Moscowin July to agree on the points of the agreement. The signing of thetrilateral agreement is planned for August.

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The head of the Turkish General HQ, Ilker Bashbug, will retire on August 30th, Trend reports, citing the website of the Turkish newspaper Milliyyet. He will be replaced by the head of Turkish land forces, General Ishik Koshaner.

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Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili said at a session of theGeorgian National Security Council that Georgia is ready forhigh-level negotiations with Russia on normalizing bilateralrelations, without any pre-conditions. But Saakashvili sees thenegotiations as decisive – Russia must leave South Ossetia andAbkhazia.According to Saakashvili, normalization can be understood asreturning 500,000 refugees to South Ossetia and Abkhazia and restoringtheir citizenship. Russia is expected to leave the part of Georgianterritory it occupies.

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The head of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe(PACE), Mevlut Cavusoglu, is devoted to rapprochement of the Armenianand Azerbaijani sides on restoring the work of the sub-committee onNagorno-Karabakh, Trend reports.In 2005 PACE approved resolution 1416, establishing the sub-committee,but Lord Russell Johnson died and the sub-committee’s work halted,Cavusoglu said in Astana. Within the session in October there will bemeetings between the Armenian and Azerbaijani sides.

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An air bomb was found in the Leninskiy district of Grozny on Tuesday, RIA Novosti reports, citing a representative of the regional department of the Ministry of Emergencies, Timur Taysumov.The FAB-500 bomb was found on the territory of the former trolley bus park. The bomb will be transported to the outskirts of the city. A letter was sent requesting a group of bomb technicians from Volgograd.

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The special representative of the EU for the South Caucasus, Peter Semnebi, arrived in Baku today. His visit is due to the concern of EU about the violations of the ceasefire regime on the border line between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces, Trend reports.

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The Turkish premier Recep Erdogan has made a statement indicating the world is overcoming the global economic crisis. "The Toronto summit was quite successful," - he said, reports TRT.According to the Turkish premier, the key point of the summit for Turkey was his meeting with the US president, during which he urged Israel to apologise for the Flotilla incident. Barack Obama shared this position.

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100 million tons of crude and petrol pass through the Turkish Straits every year. Common steps are being taken for the security of straits. Precautions for securing the straits will be taken up with international firms on the 1st of July in Istanbul.A meeting entitled ''Transit Security and the Environment in the Turkish Straits'' took place in Ankara, hosted by Energy and Natural Resources Minister Taner Yildiz. The meeting focused on the talks to be held and precautions to be taken with international companies.

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Baku will host an event in July, dedicated to security in the Caspian Sea region at the level of deputy foreign ministers of the Caspian countries, Azerbaijani Deputy Foreign Minister Khalaf Khalafov said, Trend reports."The date of the event is being specified. The staff of the participants has not been fully confirmed yet," Khalafov said. He said that the process of negotiations on security in the Caspian Sea region was launched during the Tehran summit.

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The president of North Ossetia, Taimuraz Mamsurov, has signed an order on the appointment of 11 ministers, seven of them reappointed. Ministers for Architecture and Construction, Education, Sport, Agriculture, Labor, Culture, Media and Foreign relations have held their posts.

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Politics in South Caucasus is a poker game

The portal Vestnik Kavkaza was presented at the Media Forum in Minsk . After the presentation the editor-in-chief of Vestnik Kavkaza, Alexei Vlasov, gave an interview to journalists.

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Azerbaijan started the first Azerbaijani-Syrian Intergovernmental Commission for Economic, Scientific, Technological and Cultural Cooperation today in Baku. The co-chairman on the Azerbaijani side is the Minister of Agriculture Ismet Abbasov, and the Syrian co-chairman is Minister of Oil and Natural Resources Sufian Al-Alao, Trend reports.

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Iran should concede to the demands of the international community and prove the peaceful character of its nuclear program, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said during talks with his Israeli counterpart Tzipi Livni, Interfax reports.He also added that Iran should act strictly according to the UN's resolution and IAEA decisions. Meanwhile, Moscow is against unilateral sanctions against Iran.

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Iran is ready to reopen talks on its nuclear program if all the sides follow three conditions, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said at a news conference in Tehran, Interfax reports."We want all sides to announce their attitudes to Israeli nuclear weapons. Iran will employ a different strategy in holding talks with states which support Israel as a nuclear state and with those that don't" Ahmadinejad said.

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The co-chairmen of the OSCE Minsk Group will arrive in Azerbaijan at the beginning of July, Russian representative of the group on the settlement in Karabakh Igor Popov said, ANS reports.He did not comment on the statement made by the presidents of the "G-8" at its summit in Canada. He said he would comment on it after arriving in Azerbaijan. The presidents of Russia, the USA and France signed a common statement on the Karabakh settlement on Saturday. They called on the sides to speed up work on the main principles of the settlement.

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