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Entries are now open for the Khojaly Peace Prize for Art 2017.

The International Justice for Khojaly campaign and TEAS are hosting the Khojaly Peace Prize for Art to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Khojaly Massacre, the worst single atrocity of the Armenian–Azerbaijani conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, on 26 February 1992.


In the wake of the violence on the ‘contact line’, Russian President Vladimir Putin brought together both Presidents in the Black Sea resort of Sochi on 9–10 August to discuss how tensions could be calmed. The meeting was described as “important,” with both presidents reaffirming their commitment towards “seeking a solution exclusively on the basis of a peaceful approach”, according to Sergei Lavrov, Russian Foreign Minister. He went on to admit: “the most complicated questions are still unsolved.” No practical steps designed to end the conflict were announced.


Less than three months after the 20th anniversary of signing the ceasefire between Azerbaijan and Armenia over the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the fiercest fighting between the sides since the war has been recorded on the ‘contact line’, near Agdam, claiming the lives of at least 18 servicemen. There were initially 12 military casualties, eight of which occurred on 1 August, following three days of sporadic fighting, with four more deaths being recorded on 2 August, in addition to several wounded servicemen. The occupying forces in Armenia admitted losing three servicemen that night.


Two of the brightest stars of contemporary jazz-mugham are the pianists Shahin Novrasli and Isfar Sarabski. In this article, reproduced with permission from Couleurs Jazz, Marion Paoli, Chief Editor, surveys the work of both musicians in the wake of Shahin’s Bayati CD, released on the French ‘Beejazz’ label, and Isfar’s concert during the Festival Jazz à Saint-Germain des Prés.


In the most complete silence of Saint-Roch arose a melody, as the voice of a clarinet suddenly occupies the whole space. Then it came closer and passed by to the slow step of the soloist who walked forward through the centre aisle, from the church door to the choir. How beautiful and tranquil was Kinan Azmeh.


The chamber version of Khojaly 613 by Pierre Thilloy, commissioned by TEAS, received its world premiére in Paris during the Khojaly Commemoration Concert on 24 February, followed by its UK premiére in London two days later. The work was dedicated to the 613 victims of the Khojaly massacre on 26 February 1992 – the largest single killing during the Azerbaijani–Armenian war over Nagorno-Karabakh.


On 16 December, William Hague, UK Foreign Secretary, visited Baku to witness the signing of a massive $45bn 2000-mile gas pipeline deal that will see Azerbaijani Caspian gas from the Shah Deniz II field being piped to Italy, making the proposed Southern Energy Corridor into a reality. The move will ensure energy security for Europe.


French composer Pierre Thilloy has been shortlisted for his TEAS-commissioned piece Khojaly 613 by the judging panel for the ‘Best Composer’ category in the Victoires de la Musique Classique Awards, placing him amongst the final eight composers out of 160 candidates. In his submission, Mr Thilloy explained the background to this piece, which commemorates the killing in 1992 of 613 civilians by Armenian military forces in Khojaly, a large town in Nagorno-Karabakh.


Moody’s Investors Service – the leading financial analyst – has recognised the robust strength of the Azerbaijani economy in its annual credit report for the country. This says that Azerbaijan’s Baa3 foreign and local currency bond ratings – along with a stable outlook – reflect the government’s low debt, sustained fiscal surpluses and strong net creditor position. The report takes particular note of the fact that the State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) and Central Bank of Azerbaijan (CBA) hold foreign assets worth $45bn.


According to a BP statement, the Shah Deniz Consortium finalised a number of 25-year agreements with nine of Europe’s most prominent gas purchasers in Italy, Greece and Bulgaria on 19 September. These will account for just over 10bn m3 (bcm) of gas from the Stage II development of the Shah Deniz field in the Azerbaijani section of the Caspian Sea.