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Disney stops paying 100000 workers during downturn

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Walt Disney will stop paying more than 100,000 employees from this week as it struggles with coronavirus closures, BBC News reports.

The world's biggest entertainment group operates theme parks and hotels in the US, Europe and Asia.

Stopping pay for almost half of its workforce will save Disney up to $500m (£400m) a month, according to the Financial Times.

Disney made operating income of $1.4bn for its parks, experiences and products in the last three months of 2019.

The company said it will provide full healthcare benefits for staff placed on unpaid leave and urged its US employees to apply for government benefits through the $2tn coronavirus stimulus package.

The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits has been surging since its national lockdown, rising above six million. Protesters have taken to the streets in the US, demanding the reopening of economies.

The travel and leisure sectors were the first to be hit financially from coronavirus shutdowns. Airlines have been struggling to survive with many asking for financial assistance from governments.

But Disney's fortunes for its online streaming site Disney Plus are much better, with more than 50m subscribers in just five months since it was launched.

Last month Walt Disney said its executive chairman Bob Iger would give up his entire salary during the pandemic while chief executive Bob Chapek will take a 50% pay cut. Mr Iger is one of highest paid executives in the entertainment sector, earning $47.5m last year as chairman and chief executive.

When the theme parks reopen, Mr Iger has forecast that temperature checks of visitors could become part of its normal routine along with bag checks.

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Armenian Aggression

Azerbaijani, Saudi FMs exchange views on current situation in Karabakh

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By Trend

Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov held a phone talk with his Saudi counterpart Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud, Trend reports citing the press service of the Foreign Ministry of Azerbaijan.

The ministers discussed the latest situation in the region, emphasizing the importance of the implementation of the trilateral statement about a complete ceasefire and cessation of all hostilities in the zone of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, made by the Azerbaijani president, Armenia's PM, and the president of Russia, which was signed on November 9, 2020. There was also discussed the status of the realization of some issues arising from the statement, highlighted the importance of this statement in terms of ensuring peace in the region.

The parties noted with satisfaction the development of bilateral cooperation between Azerbaijan and Saudi Arabia.

During the talk, the possibilities of expanding cooperation on multilateral platforms were also discussed.

Besides, the parties exchanged views on other issues of mutual interest.

Armenian Armed Forces launched a large-scale military attack on positions of the Azerbaijani army on the front line, using large-caliber weapons, mortars, and artillery on Sept. 27. Azerbaijan responded with a counter-offensive along the entire front.

Following over a month of military action to liberate its territories from Armenian occupation, Azerbaijan has pushed Armenia to sign the surrender document. A joint statement on the matter was made by the Azerbaijani president, Armenia's PM, and the president of Russia.

A complete ceasefire and a cessation of all hostilities in the zone of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict were introduced at 00:00 hours (Moscow time) on 10 November 2020.

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, the Armenian Armed Forces occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts. The 1994 ceasefire agreement was followed by peace negotiations.

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Armenian Aggression

Resolution adopted by French Senate must be canceled – Azerbaijani NGO head

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The resolution adopted by the French Senate on the recognition of the fictional "Nagorno-Karabakh Republic" must be canceled, a participant in today's protests held in front of the French embassy in Baku, chairman of the Azerbaijani Center for International Studies NGO Samir Adigozelli told Trend on Nov. 26.

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Level of religious tolerance in Azerbaijan is much higher than in France – ISESCO ex-director

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The level of religious tolerance in Azerbaijan is much higher than in France and other Western countries, former ISESCO Director General Abdulaziz Othman Altwaijri believes, Trend reports.

Altwaijri wrote this on his Twitter page.

“I have visited Azerbaijan many times to partake in various events and have repeatedly met with representatives of various religious confessions. France, as well as some other Western countries, were silent when the Armenians barbarously destroyed mosques in Karabakh and turned them into barns. At present, the same countries, which were silent before the fact of the destruction of Azerbaijani cultural values, demand Azerbaijan respect the historical values ​​of Christians,” he wrote.

Being a multicultural and multi-religious country, Azerbaijan has always been home to representatives of all nations and religions who have peacefully coexisted and worked here for centuries.

The Christian community of Azerbaijan is a vital and active part of the country's society, whose monuments and places of worship are protected and regularly restored by the Azerbaijani state.

“From the very beginning of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Armenia has repeatedly tried to accuse Azerbaijan of inflicting damage to churches and other historically important monuments. This has been done without substantial evidence and hasn’t been confirmed by any independent international organization,” the ISESCO ex-director said.

“The Azerbaijani Armed Forces don’t attack civilian targets. On the contrary, Azerbaijan has made its contribution to the protection of Christian historical monuments not only within the country but also abroad,” Altwaijri noted.

“As many facts testify, the Armenians destroyed historical and cultural monuments, major infrastructure facilities such as hospitals and schools, residential buildings in the occupied lands of Azerbaijan,” he added.

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