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Ten thousand rally against Armenian government

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YEREVAN, Armenia – More than 10,000 opposition supporters rallied in the Armenian capital on Tuesday, calling for the government’s resignation on the third anniversary of deadly political unrest.

“We are ready to start a dialogue with the authorities, but only on one subject: the conducting of urgent presidential and parliamentary elections,” said opposition leader and former president Levon Ter-Petrosian.

Ten people including two policemen died during a night of violent clashes between riot squads and opposition supporters in Yerevan in March 2008 after disputed elections which brought President Serzh Sarkisian to office.

The authorities declared a state of emergency and sent the army onto the streets, accusing opposition activists of trying to seize power.

Demonstrators including relatives of those who died carried photographs of the victims of the clashes and demanded the punishment of those responsible.

Ter-Petrosian called for an international investigation and the release of what he called “political prisoners” — opposition activists jailed for their involvement in the unrest.

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Moderate opposition party Zharangutyun (Heritage) also accused the country’s leadership of continuing to cover up the truth about who was responsible for the clashes.

“Three years ago on March 1, Armenia’s ruling regime committed a great crime against its own people as it opened fire upon them,” a statement issued by the party said.

The Armenian parliament held a minute’s silence to commemorate the victims of what Speaker Hovik Abrahamian called the “tragic events” in 2008.

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Lost version of Delacroix masterpiece discovered in Paris

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A newly discovered version of Eugene Delacroix's Orientalist masterpiece, "Women of Algiers" went on display for the first time in Paris on Thursday.

The lost study for the painting by the French Romantic painter which inspired generations of artists including Paul Gauguin, Vincent van Gogh and Paul Cezanne was discovered in a Paris apartment 18 months ago.

Since then experts have been retracing its history and carrying out X-ray and infra-red tests on the picture.

Like the much larger version in the Louvre, it shows a reclining wealthy woman and a black servant.

The canvass disappeared after it was sold in 1850 by the French diplomat Charles-Edgar de Mornay, with whom the painter went to North Africa in 1831, shortly after the French conquest of Algeria.

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Putin says use of US force against Iran would be ‘disaster’

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Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday said any use of force by the US against Iran would lead to disaster as tensions escalate between Washington and Tehran.

"The US says it does not rule out the use of force... This would be a disaster for the region," Putin said during an annual televised phone-in with screened questions posed by Russian viewers.

"It would lead to a surge in violence and an increase in the number of refugees," he said, adding that the consequences of intervention would be "difficult to calculate".

Moscow has backed Tehran in its stand off with the United States since Washington pulled out of an international 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran last year.

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Einstein’s relativity document gifted to Nobel museum

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The Nobel Museum in Stockholm has been gifted Albert Einstein's first paper published after he received the Nobel Prize in 1922 and discussing his then still controversial relativity theory.

Swedish businessman Per Taube bought the handwritten two-page document at an auction for 1.2 million krona (110,000 euros) in December last year.

He has now made good on his promise to gift the manuscript to the Nobel Museum, which will put it on display in a glass frame this autumn.

The paper, written in November 1922 while Einstein was attending conferences in south-east Asia, was published a month later by the Prussian Academy of Sciences.

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