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Today's featured article

Members of the Armenian "Dashnak battalion" celebrate the capture of Shusha

The Nagorno-Karabakh War was an armed conflict that took place from February 1988 to May 1994, in the small ethnic enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh in southwestern Azerbaijan, between the majority ethnic Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh backed by the Republic of Armenia against the Republic of Azerbaijan. As the war progressed, Armenia and Azerbaijan, both former Soviet Republics, became enveloped in a protracted, undeclared war in the mountainous heights of Karabakh as Azerbaijan attempted to curb a secessionist movement in Nagorno-Karabakh. The enclave's parliament had voted in favor of uniting itself with Armenia and a referendum was held with the vast majority of the Karabakh population voting in favor of independence. The demand to unify with Armenia, which proliferated in the late 1980s, began in a relatively peaceful manner; however, in the following months, as the Soviet Union's disintegration neared, it gradually grew into an increasingly violent conflict between the two ethnic groups, resulting in claims of ethnic cleansing by all sides. Full-scale fighting erupted in the late winter of 1992. By the end of the war in 1994, the Armenians were in full control of most of the enclave and also held and currently control approximately 9% of Azerbaijan's territory outside the enclave. A Russian-brokered ceasefire was signed in May 1994 and peace talks, mediated by the OSCE Minsk Group, have been held ever since by Armenia and Azerbaijan. (more...)

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August 2: International Friendship Day (2009); Day of the Republic in the Republic of Macedonia

The Macedonium monument in Krushevo commemorating the Ilinden Uprising of 1903.

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NGC 1300

NGC 1300 is a barred spiral galaxy located roughly 69 million light-years away in the direction of the constellation Eridanus. In its core, the nucleus shows its own extraordinary and distinct "grand-design" spiral structure that is about 3,300 light-years long.

Photo credit: Hubble Space Telescope

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