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Armenia violates ceasefire with Azerbaijan 22 times

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Over the past 24 hours, Armenian armed forces have violated the ceasefire along the line of contact between Azerbaijani and Armenian troops 22 times, Azerbaijani Defense Ministry said on Aug. 13.

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, 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. Armenia has not yet implemented four UN Security Council resolutions on withdrawal of its armed forces from Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding districts.

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Oil prices fall on world markets

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Oil prices have fallen on the world markets.

On London ICE (InterContinental Exchange Futures) cost of the Brent crude oil decreased $0.15 to stand at $65.07, while the price of Light crude oil at the NYMEX (New York Mercantile Exchange) fell $0.18 to trade at $59.89

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Hiroshima buildings that survived atomic bomb to be demolished

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The Japanese city of Hiroshima plans to knock down two buildings that survived the 1945 atomic bomb – but some locals want them preserved as landmarks, BBC News reported.

The two blocks – built in 1913 – were first used as a military clothing factory, and later as university student accommodation.

They were also used as a makeshift hospital after the bomb itself.

"They could be used as facilities toward (promoting) the abolition of nuclear weapons," said one survivor.

Around 80,000 people were killed as a direct result of the bomb, and another 35,000 were injured.

The attack flattened most of the city, and – as of last year – only 85 buildings built before the bomb remained within five kilometres of "ground zero".

The blocks survived, at least partly because they were made from reinforced concrete. Some bomb damage to the metal windows and doors is still visible.

In 2017, authorities found the structures – now publicly-owned – were highly likely to collapse in a strong earthquake.

And – as the buildings are not in use, and are not open to the public – the local government decided they should be demolished by 2022.

A third building at the site will be preserved, and its walls and roof will be repaired and reinforced to protect it from earthquakes.

Iwao Nakanishi, 89, was in one of the buildings when the city was bombed. He is now the head of a local group demanding the preservation of the buildings.

"Considering the historical significance of telling the tragedy to the future generation, we can no way accept the demolition," he told the Mainichi newspaper. "We strongly oppose it."

Mr Nakanishi said the buildings could be used to promote "the abolition of nuclear weapons".

In recent years, they have not been used – although visits were possible via the local authority.

"These are valuable buildings that are telling us the horror of the atomic bomb," one 69-year-old who visited the site told Hiroshima paper Yomiuri.

"I felt strongly after looking at them directly for the first time so I want all of them to be preserved."

Hiroshima's most famous ruin from the bomb is the dome in the city's Peace Memorial Park.

A Unesco World Heritage site, it has undergone reinforcement work to make it more earthquake resistant.

After Germany had surrendered in May 1945, Japan continued the war in Asia.

The US hoped that dropping a nuclear bomb – after Japan rejected an earlier ultimatum for peace – would force a quick surrender without risking US casualties on the ground.

The first bomb, dropped on Hiroshima, killed an estimated 140,000 people in total, once long-term radiation illness was taken into account.

The attack was the first time a nuclear weapon was used during a war.

When no immediate surrender came from the Japanese, US forces dropped a second bomb three days later, on the city of Nagasaki.

Japan surrendered six days later and officially brought about the end of World War Two.

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Turkey may close Incirlik Kurecik bases if necessary

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Sunday that Ankara may close two bases in Turkey where U.S. soldiers are stationed "if necessary", Anadolu Agency reported.

"If necessary, we will hold discussions with all our delegations, and if necessary, we may close Incirlik [air base in southern Adana province] and Kurecik [radar station in eastern Malatya province]," Erdogan said in a televised interview.

Speaking about a resolution passed in the U.S. Senate on Armenian allegations over the events of 1915, Erdogan said the bill was "completely political," adding: "It is very important for both sides that the U.S. does not take irreparable steps in our relations."

"We regret that the polarization in U.S. domestic politics has had negative consequences for us and that some groups abuse developments about our country for their own interests in order to weaken [President Donald] Trump," Erdogan added.

“We are not going to stand empty-handed. Let me say very clearly and openly: Is it possible to speak about America without mentioning Indians? It is a shameful moment in U.S. history. Similar things happened in Africa. Is it possible to put aside the French massacres in Rwanda, Algeria?

“They did slave trade in cells from Senegal to America. What will we do to explain these to the international community? We have documents in our archive. We will reveal that the history of the West is the history of racism and colonialism. While all these massacres and genocides are standing, they cannot say anything to the nation which has a proud history like us,” said Erdogan.

On Thursday, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed a resolution recognizing Armenian claims on the events that transpired in 1915.

Turkey's position on the events of 1915 is that the deaths of Armenians in eastern Anatolia took place when some sided with invading Russians and revolted against Ottoman forces. A subsequent relocation of Armenians resulted in numerous casualties.

Turkey objects to the presentation of the incidents as "genocide" but describes the events as a tragedy in which both sides suffered casualties.

Ankara has repeatedly proposed the creation of a joint commission of historians from Turkey and Armenia plus international experts to examine the issue.

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