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Prosecutor General Orders Investigation of Assault on Reporter by Parliament Security Chief

September 12, 2014 Armenia, Video No Comments
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17:26, September 12, 2014

Armenia’s Prosecutor General reports that it has launched an investigation of an incident that occurred on September 9 in which the security chief of the National Assembly accosted a reporter who was covering a street art group placing a banner on the perimeter fence of the parliament.

Prosecutor General Karen Hayrapetyan has instructed that videos of the incident be forwarded to the Special Investigative Service for review.

Source: HetqOriginial Article

Wrestler Arsen Julfalakyan Crowned World Champ

September 12, 2014 Armenia No Comments
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18:09, September 12, 2014

Arsen Julfalakyan has been crowned world champion in the 75kg Greco-Roman category after beating Neven Zugaj earlier this evening at the 2014 World Wrestling Championship in Tashkent.

Julfalakyan beat Zugaj (Croatia) by a score of 4-0.

The Armenian wrestler won a silver medal at the 2012 Olympics and came in second in his weight category at the 2010 world wrestling championship. 

Source: HetqOriginial Article

Russian Arms Exporter Offers More Deals To Azerbaijan

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Russia will complete the ongoing delivery of about 100 T-90 tanks to Azerbaijan early next year and is ready to modernize older tanks used by the Azerbaijani army, according to a senior Russian defense industry official.

The Itar-Tass news agency on Friday quoted Esen Topoev, a top aide to the chief executive of Rosoboronexport, as saying that the Russian state arms exporter could also sell anti-ship missiles to Baku and open facilities in Azerbaijan for repairs and maintenance of Russian-made military hardware.

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Russia — A T-90 tank drives through the Red Square during a Victory Day parade rehearsal in Moscow, 06May2010

Azerbaijan began receiving the sophisticated T-90 tanks last year in accordance with Russian-Azerbaijani defense contracts signed in 2010-2012. In Topoev’s words, these shipments will be complete “in the beginning of 2015.”

Armenian Defense Chief Promises ‘Longer-Range Weapons’

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The Armenian military will soon acquire more long-range and precise missiles than it currently has in its arsenal, Defense Minister Seyran Ohanian said on Friday.

“Every year Armenia’s armed forces receive modern weapons and military hardware,” he told students and professors of a state-run university in Yerevan. “These are not just tanks, artillery and anti-aircraft systems. In recent years we also have reached agreements to implement that rearmament process faster and with longer-range and precise systems.”

“These are not just words. In recent years, for instance, we acquired S-300 [air-defense] systems and the like. We will have longer-range systems very soon,” Ohanian added in a speech.

Armenia-NATO Ties ‘Understood By Russia’

September 12, 2014 Armenia, Top News No Comments
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Defense Minister Seyran Ohanian reaffirmed on Friday Armenia’s commitment to close cooperation with NATO, saying that it is drawing no objections from Russia or other ex-Soviet states aligned in the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO).

Ohanian said deepening ties with NATO are helping Armenia to not only “modernize” its armed forces but also act as a bridge between the U.S.-led alliance and the CSTO.

“We are given an opportunity to be on the border between these two organizations while cooperating with the CSTO,” he told university students in Yerevan. “And we are making full use of that border status so that there is an exchange of experience from one organization to the other.”

Ruling party does not want split between four non-coalition forces

September 12, 2014 Armenia No Comments
Armenian News

Head of the Republican Party of Armenia (RPA) parliamentary group member Vahram Baghdasaryan told a news briefing on Thursday that the ruling party has no wish to split the four non-coalition parliamentary forces.
“We are willing to create conditions for a full-fledged non-coalition forces’ alliance, but life shows their statements contain contradictions,” he said.
Asked about disagreements between the leader of the prosperous Armenia party and the party’s parliamentary faction over constitutional reforms, Mr Baghdasaryan said:
“I noticed, but in yesterday’s interview they said they have to wait for the documents to be ready, and they may support the documents.”

Source: TertOriginial Article

Sexy teacher on math book cover in Thailand

September 12, 2014 Armenia, Diaspora No Comments
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A Nonthaburi textbook publisher has found an interesting way to get children interested in math.
Amid a collage of mathy-looking imagery on the cover of a school textbook labeled “Basic Mathematics,” a rather attractive model gazes lustfully into a portfolio supposedly containing sexy calculations.
As sharp-eyed observers (of a lot of porn, we’d suspect) noticed, the model is actually a sexy Japanese AV star, and the image was taken from a naughty, naughty photo shoot.
The interesting illustration was discovered by Twitter user T3Thee, who tweeted about the cover model’s uncanny familiarity on Wednesday.

Source: TertOriginial Article

SanDisk SD memory card ‘largest ever’

September 12, 2014 Armenia, Diaspora, Film, Technology, Video No Comments
Armenian News

Memory specialist SanDisk has created an SD card with 512 gigabytes (512GB) of storage space – the highest capacity ever released, the BBC reports.
The card, which is the size of a postage stamp, will go on sale for $800 (490).
The launch comes a decade after the firm released a 512-megabyte (MB) SD card with one-thousandth of the space.
Experts believe SD cards could eventually hold up to 2 terabytes (TB) of data, about 2,000GB.
The new card is aimed at film-makers shooting in the high-quality 4K format.
The 4K format – which is four times the resolution of HD – requires large file storage. Depending on compression, a single minute of 4K shooting will typically take around 5GB of storage space.
“4K Ultra HD is an example of a technology that is pushing us to develop new storage solutions capable of handling massive file sizes,” said Dinesh Bahal, vice-president of product marketing at SanDisk.
The SD card format is one of the most widely used standards of flash storage, popular with digital cameras, camcorders and other mobile devices.
While camera types, resolutions and settings vary – a 512GB card could potentially hold around 30 hours of HD video.
John Delaney, a senior mobile analyst from IDC, said innovation in physical storage was critical to the future of our devices – even if a lot of people are turning to cloud storage instead.
“The thing that is driving cloud storage is multiple devices usage – which solves the, ‘Where’s my stuff?’ problem: if you use cloud storage for everything, whatever device you have with you can be used to access your content.”
But he added: “So far there’s still a strong preference for local storage.
“People just feel more in control and more able to rely on being able to access the content when they literally know where it is.
“Storing in the cloud means you literally don’t know where it is.”
Mr Delaney added that recent high-profile security issues around cloud storage – such as the celebrity picture leak last week – would play on the minds of consumers.

Dashnaks Ready To Back Constitutional Reform

September 12, 2014 Armenia No Comments
Armenian News

Underlining its differences with other major opposition parties, the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun) reaffirmed on Thursday its readiness, in principle, to endorse sweeping constitutional changes planned by President Serzh Sarkisian.

Still, Artsvik Minasian, a leading Dashnaktsutyun member, stressed that the endorsement is contingent on the acceptance a number of concrete proposals which the party will submit next month to a presidential commission working on the constitutional reform.

“If our demands are not fulfilled, then for us those constitutional changes will not be worth a penny,” he warned at a news conference.

In Minasian’s words, Dashnaktsutyun is specifically seeking constitutional provisions that would guarantee the independence of election commissions and introduce other safeguards against vote rigging. The party, which was a junior partner in President Serzh Sarkisian’s governing coalition until 2009, also wants parliamentary elections in Armenia to be held only on a party-list basis.

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Featured Books

Book Reviews

John Balian’s “Novel Approach” Brings the Armenian Saga to the Masses – An interview with John Balian by Lucine Kasbarian

Gray Wolves and White Doves cover art

Armenians often wish for a tale about the Armenian Genocide and its aftermath that would make a blockbuster film and draw attention to their cause. John Balian’s new book, Gray Wolves and White Doves (CreateSpace/Amazon.com), may be that tale.

 Largely autobiographical, this atmospheric novel is presented through the eyes of an innocent young boy trying to make sense of the world as he grows up amid repressive conditions in Western Armenia/Eastern Turkey during the 1960s and 70s.

 This fast-paced, multi-layered narrative takes readers from Hanna Ibelin’s (a.k.a. Jonah Ibelinian’s) close-knit family life in the perilous Asia Minor region of Palu to terror and tragedy while en route to Syria’s Kamishli, to a bleak existence on the mean streets of Istanbul.

New Children’s Picture Book From Armenian Folklore

Teaneck, N.J. and Belmont, Mass. –  An Armenian folktale retold by Armenian-American writer Lucine Kasbarian and illustrated by Moscow-based artist Maria Zaikina debuts with Marshall Cavendish Children’s Publishers in April 2011.

The Greedy Sparrow: An Armenian Tale is from the ancient Armenian oral tradition and culture, which was nearly obliterated during the Turkish genocide of the Armenians, Assyrians and Greeks in 1915. The author learned the tale from her father, editor and columnist C.K. Garabed, who would recite it to her at bedtime. He had learned it from his own grandmother, a celebrated storyteller from the Old Country.  The tale was first put to paper by Armenian poet Hovhannes Toumanian at the turn of the 20th century.

“We Need To Lift The Armenian Taboo”

Turkish writer and publicist Ahmet Insel labels the initiative of the Turkish Nationalist Movement Party to pray namaz on the ruins of Ani as provocation.

In an interview with “A1+,” the publicist said the initiative was supported only by a small percentage of Turks.

“They offered namaz in Ani in protest against Christian rites carried out in Trabzon and Akhtamar. The leader of the Nationalist Movement Party, Devlet Bahceli said if Christians are allowed to pray inside museums, similarly he can pray namaz in Armenian churches,” said Ahmet Insel.

The Turkish writer arrived in Armenia to participate in a book festival. Presentation of Armenian version of Dialogue sur le tabou arménien (Dialogue about the Armenian Tabou) co-authored by Ahmet Insel and Michel Marian was held during the festival.

US Media Discusses The Armenian Genocide

BURBANK, CALIFORNIA –  KFI 640, a popular news/talk radio station hosted by Bill Handel on September 23 aired a live interview with Michael Bobelian, the writer of a new book titled  Children of Armenia: A Forgotten Genocide and the Century-long Struggle for Justice

The book chronicles the aftermath of the Armenian Genocide of 1915, and recounts a people’s struggle for justice in the face of a century of silence and denial.

During the interview, which was aired during the prime morning time slot, Bill Handel addressed both the efforts within the United States to ensure that the US government appropriately acknowledges the Armenian Genocide and Turkey’s ongoing denial.

Handel, a well known and nationally syndicated radio talk show host, has discussed the Armenian Genocide during past shows.

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Commentary

China: President Takes Action Against High Ranking Corrupt Officials

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21:31, July 30, 2014

Zhou Yongkang, one of China’s most powerful former leaders, is under investigation in the highest-level corruption inquiry since the Communist Party came into power in 1949.

Under current president Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption campaign, the party’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection is investigating Zhou for “serious disciplinary violations,” as the officialXinhua news agency reports. Media has not yet, however, specified the allegations against him.

The probe is an attempt to show the length to which Xi and the party will go in order to combat abuse of power reportsThe Wall Street Journal. 

A commentary published in the officialPeoples Daily makes the point that regardless of  an official’s rank or supporters, punishment will result for violating laws or the party’s discipline. 

Armenian Gangs: Caught between an Archetype and a Cliché

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19:15, July 12, 2014

By Marineh Khachadour

“The whole thing started with a scene straight out of a mobster movie. It was around 6 p.m. when more than a dozen men from two organized crime groups opened fire on each other in a North Hollywood parking lot. Witnesses say nearly everyone was armed, and the shootout quickly went mobile. The men took off in cars, exchanging fire as they weaved through the Whitsett Avenue traffic.”

Stories such as this are not unique to Armenians in the American press, but this investigative report recently published in the LA Weekly is about Armenian Power, the Los Angeles based Armenian gang that operates in the heavily Armenian populated communities of Glendale, Burbank, and North Hollywood.

Want to Write for Hetq?

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10:24, March 14, 2014

I’m looking for freelancers who can broaden the scope of Hetq’s English edition

Arts & Culture, Commentary, Politics, Civil Society, Interviews…

Anything interesting happening in your local community you’d like to share?

Write to me with your ideas and story suggestions.

Hrant at hg.hetq@gmail.com

Source: HetqOriginial Article

For Better or For Worse: Nature Protection Ministry Proposes Amendments to Water Use Laws

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16:44, February 14, 2014

With the goal of providing a systematic solution to issues of effective use of water resources in Ararat valley, the Ministry of Nature Protection of the Republic of Armenia (RA) is proposing amendments and additions to the RA Water Code, and the RA laws on the Republic of Armenia’s National Water Program, on Licensing, and on State Tax.

The proposed legislative package has been sent to the relevant state agencies for their input.

Head of the Ministry of Nature Protection’s Water Resources Management Agency Volodya Narimanyan told Hetq, said that with this amendment package his ministry is attempting to clarify the ideas and the ambiguous commentary, as well as introduce new requirements. For example, one of the main points of the proposed amendments is if water use permit conditions are not met, the water use permit might be annulled.

2013 in Civil Society: Protests and more protests

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The struggle of civil movements this year has been comprehensive and diverse with limited success in certain fields due to unified efforts and active involvement of the civil society.

Despite the rather passive start of the year in terms of civil movements, the second half of 2013 turned out to be tense with active developments.

Some analysts believe that especially after the February 18 presidential ballot, when current president Serzh Sargsyan won a decisive victory over his opponents and was re-elected for a second term, despite the widespread poverty and atmosphere of injustice in the country, people became even more aware of the fact that is it impossible to achieve changes via elections and started practicing their constitutional rights to civil protest and disobedience more frequently.