10 months agoSnubbed Isco blanks Real Madrid lap of honour

first_imgSnubbed Isco blanks Real Madrid lap of honourby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveReal Madrid midfielder Isco skipped the lap of honour after they defeated Al Ain in the Club World Cup final.Real’s players did pose together for a team photo and there was a lap of honour, but only around 15 players took part in it.One of those who didn’t take part in the lap of honour was Isco, who only played 25 minutes in the semi-final against Kashima Antlers and who didn’t feature in the final.Keylor Navas, Kiko Casilla and Dani Carvajal were also missing from the lap of honour.During the celebrations, Nacho and Marcelo cut down part of one of the nets, while Santiago Solari and Gareth Bale were in conversation for some time. About the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

10 months agoPSG goalkeeper Buffon: Scandalous Neymar hasn’t won Ballon d’Or

first_imgAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say PSG goalkeeper Buffon: Scandalous Neymar hasn’t won Ballon d’Orby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the lovePSG goalkeeper Gigi Buffon says teammate Neymar should be regarded as among the world’s best.The Juventus icon has no doubts about the quality of the former Barcelona attacker.”It is a scandal that he does not have the Ballon d’Or, I would be furious,” said Buffon.”If life has been benevolent and has given you an uncommon quality you should not be content with being one more, you have to be number 1.”Neymar and (Kylian) Mbappé have a disproportionate talent and can dominate football during the next 10 years.” last_img read more

11 days agoRacist abuse overshadows England dominant win over Bulgaria

first_imgAbout the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say Racist abuse overshadows England dominant win over Bulgariaby Freddie Taylor11 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveEngland’s 6-0 trouncing of Bulgaria has been overshadowed by racist abuse from the Sofia crowd.Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford scored the opening goal after 7 minutes to break his recent funk, before Chelsea midfielder Ross Barkley bagged a double by the 32nd minute mark.Raheem Sterling then made it 4-0 on the stroke of half-time, but it was the disgusting actions from a section of the home support which took the spotlight.Gareth Southgate made it clear his team would follow UEFA’s three-step protocol in the event of racial abuse.A announcement was made on the PA system after 24 minutes, and Southgate and his players talked over their plan moving forward at the half-time break.Harry Kane and Sterling added more to the total during the second stanza, with the match somehow making it to the end without the England players walking off the pitch. last_img read more

2 days ago​Liverpool keeper Alisson welcomes price-tag expectation

first_img​Liverpool keeper Alisson welcomes price-tag expectationby Ansser Sadiq2 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool goalkeeper Alisson has no problem with the expectations that come with a huge price tag.When the Brazilian signed for Liverpool from Roma, he was the most expensive goalkeeper ever.But that only lasted for two weeks, as Chelsea paid a higher fee for Kepa Arrizabalaga.Alisson insists he was never phased by that sort of pressure that comes with a gigantic price tag.He told FIFA’s official website: “In football you always have to deal with pressure.”Actually, I was only the [world’s] most expensive goalkeeper for two weeks! But I knew it was a very big transfer, something out of the ordinary. “That generated huge external expectations, but I didn’t demand any more from myself than I normally would – which is already a lot, regardless of my transfer value.”For me, the most important thing is always to give your very best to help the team.” About the authorAnsser SadiqShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

a day agoLiverpool boss Klopp: I’m not ignoring Gomez

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Liverpool boss Klopp: I’m not ignoring Gomezby Paul Vegasa day agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool boss Jurgen Klopp insists he’s not ignoring Joe Gomez.Klopp went with James Milner at fullback ahead of Gomez for the Champions League win over Genk last night.But he said, “[Milner was] picked over Joe [Gomez]? I didn’t see it like that, to be honest, I only picked Millie. We got the message on Tuesday morning that Trent was ill overnight so we wanted to change as little as possible. “Millie then, in the way we wanted to play, was the clear number one solution for that moment. But after 15 minutes already it was clear that we would try to change again [by] bringing Joe on. Joe did really well. He looked confident, looked clear, it was good. That was the only reason, nothing against Joe. last_img read more

Michigan Trolls Wisconsin With Cheese Grater T-Shirts Ahead Of Saturday’s Game

first_imgMichigan football players run under the "Go Blue" banner before a home game.ANN ARBOR, MI – SEPTEMBER 13: Quarterback Devin Gardner #98 of the Michigan Wolverines leads the team onto the field prior to the start of the game against the Miami University Redhawks at Michigan Stadium on September 13, 2014 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. the Wolverines defeated the Redhawks 34-10. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)Michigan basketball is 12-7 on the 2014-15 season, heading into Saturday night’s clash with the top team in the Big Ten, the Wisconsin Badgers. It’s a big game for the Wolverines, who despite having lost top player Caris LeVert for the season, trail Wisconsin by only a half-game in the conference standings. ESPN’s College GameDay crew will be in attendance, with the show getting underway at 10 a.m. In honor of the occasion, Michigan is offering fans a clever cheese-themed t-shirt as it attempts to take down its opponents from “America’s Dairyland.”What’s grater than a free shirt? pic.twitter.com/9f6ESZ17st— Michigan Basketball (@umichbball) January 22, 2015The Wolverines and Badgers will tip-off Saturday night at  7 p.m on ESPN. If the UM hoops team’s performance is as strong as it’s Twitter account’s puns, they will have a chance to spring the upset.last_img read more

Photos: Tony Romo Ran Across The Court So He Could Sit With The Cameron Crazies At Tonight’s Duke Game

first_imgTony Romo runs across the basketball court.The Dallas Cowboys have quite a crew at tonight’s Duke game, as Jason Garrett, Tony Romo, Jason Witten and DeMarco Murray are all at Cameron Indoor Stadium to watch the Blue Devils take on Wake Forest. The Cowboys’ star quarterback apparently got tired of sitting with his teammates and head coach, though. Late in the second half of Duke’s soon-to-be blowout victory against the Demon Deacons, Romo trotted across the court so he could sit with the Cameron Crazies. Romo is literally tugging on DeMarco Murray’s arm, trying to get him to join Tony with the Crazies. Alas, only Romo makes the trip over.— Duke Basketball (@dukebasketball) March 5, 2015Tony Romo running over during the timeout to come sit with the Cameron Crazies pic.twitter.com/74fjFvC7yj— David Glenn Show (@DavidGlennShow) March 5, 2015Tony romo with the Crazies pic.twitter.com/Xza1c3O9aR— Blue Devil Nation (@BlueDevilNation) March 5, 2015Welcome to Section 17, Tony Romo pic.twitter.com/MdKtmB6cdH— Duke M. Basketball (@Duke_MBB) March 5, 2015Romo with the Crazies pic.twitter.com/mzOnSAWu3h— Blue Devil Nation (@BlueDevilNation) March 5, 2015With tonight’s win, Duke will improve to 27-3, 14-3 in the ACC. The Blue Devils are set to take on North Carolina in Chapel Hill on Saturday.last_img read more

Auburn Plummets In ESPN’s Latest Power Rankings

first_imgESPN's latest FBS rankings.espn rankingsESPN has dropped its latest installment of weekly power rankings, and as usual, there was some shifting in the ranks. Four new teams made the cut — BYU, Wisconsin, Northwestern and the surprising Temple Owls — but the real story was the fall experienced by the Auburn Tigers.Auburn was No. 7 in last week’s rankings, but checks in now at No. 21 after barely escaping FCS Jacksonville State in overtime yesterday. The second-biggest faller was Notre Dame, which dropped from No. 4 to No, 8 after escaping Charlottesville with a last-second win over Virginia. The ESPN power rankings dropped Notre Dame by 4 spots and Auburn by 14. Lol. Now THAT is accurate.— Justin Russo (@FlyByKnite) September 13, 2015BYU was the biggest riser, going from unranked to No. 18 after a second-straight Hail Mary victory. Georgia, USC, UCLA and Michigan State all climbed three spots each. Here are the complete rankings:1. Ohio State2. Alabama3. Michigan State4. TCU5. USC6. Baylor7. UCLA8. Notre Dame9. Texas A&M 10. Georgia11. Oregon12. FSU13. Clemson14. LSU15. Ole Miss 16. Oklahoma17. Georgia Tech18. BYU19. Utah20. Arizona21. Auburn22. West Virginia23. Northwestern24. Missouri25 (tie). Wisconsin       TempleYour thoughts? Comments? Questions?last_img read more

Here’s What Roy Williams Wrote On The Chalkboard Before UNC’s Win Over Notre Dame

first_imgRoy Williams isn't happy with ESPN during press conference.Roy Williams ESPNNo. 1 seed North Carolina destroyed fourth-seeded Notre Dame 78-47 in the semifinals of the ACC Tournament tonight. The Heels will look to win their first ACC tournament title since 2008 tomorrow night against the winner of Virginia-Miami.Tonight’s victory had some extra meaning for UNC, which had lost three straight games to the Fighting Irish. One of those losses came in the championship game of the 2015 ACC Tournament.Heels head coach Roy Williams wanted to make sure his team knew what was at stake tonight and reminded his players of what had happened the last few times these teams met.Roy Williams wrote “three times in a row” on the locker room whiteboard to remind the players of Notre Dame’s recent success vs UNC.— InsideCarolina (@InsideCarolina) March 12, 2016Looks like Williams’ troops took note of his motivational strategy. The Heels have lost their last four ACC title game appearances dating back to 2011. Can they snap that streak tomorrow?last_img read more

Southampton vs Man City: Kompany & Mahrez start

first_imgManchester City will look to bounce back from three defeats in four Premier League games when they take on Southampton at St Mary’s on Sunday. Liverpool extended their lead over the champions to 10 points with a victory over Arsenal on Saturday, so City need to turn their form around after back-to-back losses against Crystal Palace and Leicester City respectively.Southampton on the other hand are aiming to put further distance between themselves and the relegation places, and will take confidence from the fact they beat the Gunners at home only two weeks ago. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Game Southampton vs Manchester City Date Sunday, December 30 Time 2:15pm GMT/09:15am ET TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch In the United States (US), the game can be watched live  and on-demand with fuboTV (7-day free trial) .New users can sign up for a free seven-day trial of the live sports streaming service, which can be accessed via iOS, Android, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Roku and Apple TV as well as on a web browser. US TV channel Online stream NBCSN fubo TV (7-day free trial) In the United Kingdom (UK), the game will be shown on TV on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Premier League, and can be streamed via Sky Go. UK TV channel Online stream Sky Sports Main Event / Sky Sports Premier League Sky Go Squads & Team News Position Southampton players Goalkeepers McCarthy, Forster, Gunn Defenders Vestergaard, Hoedt, Stephens, Yoshida, Bednarek, Bertrand, Targett, Soares Midfielders Lemina, Romeu, Ward-Prowse, Hojbjerg, Armstrong, Davis, Redmond, Elyounouss Forwards Ings, Austin, Long, Gabbiadini, Gallagher Mario Lemina could miss out for Southampton with a stomach problem and Ryan Bertrand remains sidelined with a back injury. Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg returns from a one match suspension though. Confirmed Southampton starting XI: McCarthy, Stephens, Hojberg, Targett, Bednarek, Ramsay, Romeu, Lemina, Ward-Prowse, Elyounoussi, Austin.Bench: Gunn, Yoshida, Valery, Redmond, Armstrong, Long, Ings. Position Man City squad Goalkeepers Ederson, Muric Defenders Stones, Laporte, Otamendi, Kompany, Sandler, Mendy, Walker, Danilo Midfielders Fernadinho, Gundogan, Delph, Zinchenko, Foden, D. Silva, Diaz, B. Silva, Mahrez Forwards Aguero, Jesus, Sterling, Sane Fernandinho was a doubt for the trip to the south coast, but he has been included in the starting XI, while David Silva features after coming on from the bench on Boxing Day.Benjamin Mendy and Claudio Bravo are long-term absentees and Fabian Delph is suspended, but Vincent Kompany is back in the first 11.Kevin De Bruyne is missing from the squad, while Leroy Sane drops to the bench, allowing Riyad Mahrez to partner Raheem Sterling and Sergio Aguero in attack.Confirmed Man City starting XI: Ederson, Danilo, Kompany, Laporte, Zinchenko, Fernandinho, Silva, Bernardo, Mahrez, Sterling, Aguero.Bench: Muric, Walker, Stones, Sane, Otamendi, Jesus, Foden.Betting & Match Odds Hosts Southampton are 10/1 to win the game with bet365  while Man City are favourites at 3/10, despite their poor form. A draw can be backed at 5/1.Click here to see more offers for the game, including goalscoring markets, correct score predictions and more. Match Preview Pep Guardiola Manchester City 2018-19If City slip to a fourth defeat in five Premier League games then the pressure will really start to mount on Pep Guardiola’s side, and Liverpool will have a healthy lead going into the new year. The knee injury sustained by Mendy and Delph’s sending off at Leicester mean that Oleksandr Zinchenko will get a chance at left-back, so that could be an area Saints look to exploit on the counter-attack as the youngster has made just two league appearances so far this term.Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side will have plenty of pace to hit City with, including the likes of Danny Ings, Nathan Redmond and Stuart Armstrong, while both Charlie Austin and Shane Long came off the bench in their last outing against West Ham.Guardiola is confident of a result though, and insisted his players must not get distracted by the league table: “The less important issue is Liverpool, we have to think about Southampton,” the City boss said. “I don’t forget who we are, how good a team we are, how exceptional these lads I have in the locker room are.”The reality is we have lost three in four games and the last two. If you want to be real contenders you have to win again. If you don’t, it will not be possible.”Hasenhuttl meanwhile is expecting to face a City side at their best as they look to respond to Liverpool’s 5-1 win yesterday.He said: “It’s not normal for Manchester City to lose two times in a row. We expect the most difficult challenge that is possible. If we want to keep something in St Mary’s we have to play a perfect performance.”We have to be patient with what we expect from this team now after the two victories over Arsenal and Huddersfield. It will be a hard and long journey until the end of the season.” Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

Report: West Ham 1 Arsenal 0

first_imgSamir Nasri impressed for West Ham as they claimed a 1-0 Premier League victory over his former club Arsenal at London Stadium on Saturday.Nasri was making his Premier League debut for the club as he continues his comeback from an 18-month ban for receiving an intravenous treatment at a Los Angeles clinic in December 2016, contravening World Anti-Doping Agency rules.And the former France international was a key figure for West Ham, setting up Declan Rice for the winner early in the second half. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Marko Arnautovic – linked with a move to China – waved to fans after being replaced in the second half, while Arsenal struggled to truly test goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski in a poor showing.Mark Noble failed to get enough purchase on a left-footed strike from the edge of the box as West Ham threatened to take an early lead but it was Arsenal who forced the first real save of the match – Fabianski providing the block after Alexandre Lacazette had exposed a hole in the Hammers’ defence.Sead Kolasinac chose to cut the ball back for Lacazette when a shot would have been the better option after the ball broke for him down the left after 23 minutes, while Nasri probably should have followed the Bosnian’s example when he drilled into the side-netting soon after.Chance for Nasri!Samir plays a one-two with Arnie and then shoots wide of goal in the box. That was a real chance. #WHUARS 0-0 (26) pic.twitter.com/ZT67Lu3ftp— West Ham United (@WestHamUtd) January 12, 2019Nasri then teed up Felipe Anderson to fizz a low strike wide, before Matteo Guendouzi arrowed a strike just past the post from distance with Fabianski at full stretch and Declan Rice headed just off target in the closing stages of an even first half.West Ham made the breakthrough three minutes into the second half, when a weak clearing header from Laurent Koscielny fell to former Arsenal colleague Nasri, who laid off the ball for Rice fire home from just inside the box – the 19-year-old’s first goal for the club.Arsenal improved following the introduction of Aaron Ramsey – who is said to have agreed a deal with Juventus this week – after 59 minutes but failed to make their chances count, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alex Iwobi missing two opportunities of note.The Gunners had the ball in the back of the net in stoppage time, but Koscielny’s header was ruled out for offside against Lucas Torreira, who crossed the ball, as West Ham held on for a first home win against the Gunners since 2006. What does it mean? Travel sickness for ArsenalDefeat at West Ham means fifth-placed Arsenal are now without a win in their last five Premier League away matches, losing three of those, and could now be caught by Manchester United if they pick up three points at Tottenham on Sunday. West Ham climb to eighth ahead of the rest of the weekend’s fixtures.Nasri shows promising flashesAny doubts around Nasri’s readiness for Premier League football after so long out will have at least been partially allayed by his performance on Saturday.Some neat and intelligent touches around the box made him a central part of West Ham’s attacking play and he came away with a deserved assist from his first match back in the English top flight.Arnautovic waved off amid Chinese whispersNasri was replaced after 70 minutes – the same time as Arnautovic was removed after a much less impactful display.The Austrian removed his gloves and waved to all corners of the ground as he trudged from the pitch, perhaps suggesting there is truth in the reports linking him with a move to China.Key Opta Facts- West Ham registered only their third home Premier League win against Arsenal and their first since November 2006, ending a run of 10 home games without victory against the Gunners (D3 L7).- Arsenal have taken just two points from their last five away Premier League games (W0 D2 L3) – they won 13 in the five away games prior to this run (W4 D1 L0).- Nasri played his first Premier League game for West Ham and registered his first assist in the competition since April 2016, when he assisted Sergio Aguero for Man City against Chelsea.- Arsenal are one of three Premier League teams yet to lead at half-time in an away Premier League match this season, along with Burnley and Cardiff City.- Manuel Pellegrini remains unbeaten in home matches against Unai Emery in all competitions during his managerial career (P7 W5 D2 L0).19y 363d – Declan Rice (aged 19 years 363 days) is the first teenager to score a Premier League goal for West Ham since Junior Stanislas in November 2009. Talented. #WHUARS pic.twitter.com/9dBOyPOfWD— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 12, 2019What’s next?After clashes with Fulham and West Ham, the London derbies keep coming for Arsenal, who host Chelsea next Saturday. West Ham visit Bournemouth earlier on the same day. read morelast_img read more

Arsenal £25m Tierney bid rejected by Celtic

first_imgCeltic have rejected Arsenal’s improved £25 million ($31m) bid for defender Kieran Tierney as the Gunners’ summer transfer woes continue.Scotland international Tierney has emerged as Unai Emery’s primary target at left-back, with the north London outfit having already seen a £15m ($19m) offer knocked back.And Goal has now learned that the Bhoys have again turned down a bid from Arsenal, with the Scottish champions unhappy with the structure of the deal, which includes a number of add-ons and clauses so as to reach the eventual £25m fee. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? It is expected Arsenal will return with a third offer in the coming days as their wait for a first senior signing of the summer transfer window goes on.While they have brought in youngster Gabriel Martinelli, the Gunners have been frustrated elsewhere in the market as they aim to improve on a fifth-place finish in the Premier League last season.The club are still hopeful of securing a move for Saint-Etienne centre-back William Saliba, despite Tottenham’s late bid.Arsenal had agreed a £27m ($34m) deal for the 18-year-old , who has also agreed a five-year contract with the club.But, just as the transfer was being finalised, Spurs matched Arsenal’s overall offer, while also offering a more attractive initial package to Saint-Etienne in terms of how the deal would be structured.William Saliba Saint-Etienne Arsenal TottenhamTalks have continued over the weekend, but Arsenal remain hopeful they have already done enough to convince the player to move to the Emirates.They also retain an interest in signing Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha, though the Eagles’ reluctance to shift on their asking price could force the Gunners to look elsewhere for attacking reinforcements.Arsenal are currently in the United States preparing for the first of four games during their pre-season tour.They will take on the Colorado Rapids on Sunday before playing three International Champions Cup fixtures against Real Madrid, Fiorentina and Bayern Munich.The club’s new technical director, Edu, is with the squad in Los Angeles – as is head of football Raul Sanllehi – as they look to continue transfer negotiations from across the Atlantic.Tierney’s potential arrival could see Nacho Monreal forced out of the starting line-up in north London, though the Spaniard has hit back at claims he could be sold this summer.Speaking on Sunday, he said: “I belong at Arsenal. I still have a contract. My idea is to stay here. It’s a great club and I feel really comfortable playing for Arsenal. My idea is to continue playing here.”last_img read more

Spurs end pre-season with penalties loss to Inter

first_imgChristian Eriksen and Oliver Skipp missed from the spot as Tottenham suffered a 4-3 penalty shoot-out defeat to Inter after a 1-1 draw on home soil in their final pre-season friendly.Spurs got the better of Bayern Munich on penalties on Wednesday to win the Audi Cup, but they were second best in Sunday’s International Champions Cup clash against Antonio Conte’s side.Inter pegged the hosts back before half-time through new signing Stefano Sensi after Lucas Moura had maintained his impressive form by putting Spurs in front inside the first three minutes. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Neither team could find a winner in a match lacking clear-cut chances and it was Inter – still three weeks away from their first competitive match of 2019-20 – who prevailed 4-3 on penalties in London, Joao Mario converting the winning kick.All square after 90 minutes in our final pre-season outing, but Inter take it on penalties. #ICC2019 #COYS pic.twitter.com/FmqIoh5Kcs — Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) August 4, 2019 Lucas scored in the win against Juventus and the defeat to Manchester United in Spurs’ two previous ICC matches and he was on target again here.The Brazilian forward was picked out by Erik Lamela on the counter, carried the ball into the opposition box and fired his shot past Samir Handanovic from 12 yards.Marcelo Brozovic came close to responding for Inter with a powerful shot from range that crashed off the inside of the post and rolled across goal.But the visitors did not have to wait much longer for an equaliser, as Sensi kept his composure after being played in behind by Sebastiano Esposito and tucked the ball past Hugo Lloris in the 36th minute.The second period was broken up by a flurry of substitutions and it took until the 77th minute for the first on-target attempt of the half – Nicolo Barella testing Lloris’ replacement Paulo Gazzaniga from distance.Son Heung-min was then denied by Handanovic from 10 yards as the match opened up, but penalties were required to separate the sides.Eriksen was thwarted by Handanovic from Tottenham’s first attempt, only for George Puscas to meet his match in Gazzaniga.The next six penalties were converted, but Skipp could not find a way past Handanovic and ex-West Ham man Joao Mario secured the win. read morelast_img read more

A Top 5-Star Recruit Is Reportedly Opening Up His Recruitment

first_imgFans watch during the game between the Louisiana State University Tigers and the University of Louisiana-Lafatette Ragin' Cajuns at Tiger Stadium.BATON ROUGE, LA – SEPTEMBER 19: Fans watch during the game between the Louisiana State University Tigers and the University of Louisiana-Lafatette Ragin’ Cajuns at Tiger Stadium on September 19, 2009 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)One of the top recruits in the 2019 class has been committed to his school for a while, but he’s reportedly decided to open up his recruitment a little bit.Kardell Thomas, a five-star offensive lineman and the No. 1 offensive guard in the 2019 class, has been committed to LSU for nearly two years. That’s a long time.Up until now, Thomas had reportedly planned on shutting down his recruitment completely. However, that is apparently going to change. Here’s the latest.Update on 5-star Kardell ThomasChad Simmons of Rivals.com reports that Thomas now plans to take visits to other schools.Alabama, Miami, Oklahoma, Penn State, Texas and USC are believed to be in contention.The full update is behind a paywall on Rivals.com:Top #LSU commit Kardell Thomas has changed his tune. Earlier this year, he said he was done and only visiting Baton Rouge. He now plans to take visits. He knows two official visitors. #Bama #Canes @Sooners #PennState #HookEm #USCUPDATE: https://t.co/39ycnHaZen pic.twitter.com/1fS0ECIFaF— Chad Simmons (@ChadSimmons_) May 22, 2018Thomas is one of the top recruits in the country. He’s ranked the No. 20 recruit in the class by 247Sports’ Composite Rankings.It’s unclear when Thomas plans on making an official decision regarding all of his visits.Stay tuned.last_img read more

Here Is What Ezekiel Elliott’s Father Had To Say At Urban Meyer Rally

first_imgA closeup of Urban Meyer wearing an Ohio State windbreaker.ANN ARBOR, MI – NOVEMBER 28: Head coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes watches warm ups before the start of their game against the Michigan Wolverines at Michigan Stadium on November 28, 2015 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)Tonight’s Urban Meyer rally didn’t feature a large number of Ohio State fans, but it did feature a well-known one. Stacy Elliott was in attendance.The father of former Buckeye star Ezekiel Elliott was one of the most prominent figures at the rally, which was held outside Ohio Stadium. Elliott wore his son’s No. 15 OSU jersey in red.He even spoke to the media during the gathering. Not surprisingly, he defended Meyer strongly.Stacy Elliott on Urban Meyer. Elliott calls it “wrong” that Meyer is not on the field with players. “Don’t worry, Coach. God is with you.”@DispatchAlerts pic.twitter.com/Y2Kq16M2nq— Abbey Marshall (@AbbeyMarshall) August 6, 2018Ezekiel Elliott’s father, Stacy Elliott, on the outside perception of a rally for Urban Meyer: “This is not the first time Ohio State has looked odd. … If anybody really looks into this and are not haters of Ohio State and haters of Urban Meyer, they will see the actual facts.” pic.twitter.com/iWLAoTBcly— Garrett Stepien (@GarrettStepien) August 6, 2018Stacy Elliott’s appearance comes a few days after he took to Twitter to back up Meyer, who is on administrative leave and under investigation for his handling of domestic abuse allegations against former assistant coach Zach Smith.“Nothing has changed We stand with @OSUCoachMeyer #GoBucks !!” Elliott tweeted.Nothing has changed We stand with @OSUCoachMeyer #GoBucks !! pic.twitter.com/6sbyVnp631— Ambassador Elliott (@stacy_elliott) August 3, 2018According to an announcement on Sunday, Ohio State plans to conclude its investigation of Meyer in the next two weeks. At that point, a punishment, if there is one, will be announced.Anything from a suspension to being dismissed is on the table. Offensive coordinator Ryan Day is serving as the interim head coach in Meyer’s absence.last_img read more

Clemson Football’s 2019 Schedule Has Been Released

first_imgclemson quarterback trevor lawrence during the national title gameSANTA CLARA, CA – JANUARY 07: Trevor Lawrence #16 of the Clemson Tigers looks to pass against the Alabama Crimson Tide in the CFP National Championship presented by AT&T at Levi’s Stadium on January 7, 2019 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)The Clemson football team is set to begin its national title defense this coming August as the 2019 schedule has now been released.Alongside the ACC’s conference-wide reveal of the 2019 schedule, the Tigers posted their schedule for defending the college football crown.The Tigers will open up the season with back-to-back games at Death Valley: Thursday, August 29 against Georgia Tech, and Saturday, September 7 against the SEC’s Texas A&M.Clemson’s first road game of 2019 will be at Syracuse on September 14.The Tigers look to defend their #NationalChampionship against this 2019 schedule ?For more ▶️ https://t.co/FFoMy2ejAl#ALLIN pic.twitter.com/hFPSdWkna8— Clemson Football (@ClemsonFB) January 16, 2019The Tigers close out the month of September with a home game against Charlotte of Conference USA on September 21, followed by a road game against North Carolina on September 28.After getting the first weekend of October off, Clemson will be home against Florida State (October 12), away at Louisville (October 19), and home against Boston College (October 26).Clemson’s November schedule starts with a home game against Wofford of the FCS on November 2, followed by a road game against NC State on November 9.The Tigers’ home finale will be against Wake Forest on November 16. Clemson gets another weekend off before their final game of the season against in-state rival South Carolina on November 30.last_img read more

Virat Kohli will score 100 international hundreds if he stays fit: Mohammed Azharuddin

first_img India Today Web Desk New DelhiJanuary 15, 2019UPDATED: January 16, 2019 08:49 IST Virat Kohli scored 104 off 112 balls in the Adelaide ODI (AP Photo)HIGHLIGHTSVirat Kohli scored 104 for his 39th ODI centuryKohli now has 64 international centuries, third most after Sachin Tendulkar and Ricky Ponting”Virat Kohli’s consistency is very good,” Mohammad Azharuddin saidIndia vs Australia, 2nd ODI – Brief Scores: India (299/4; Kohli 104, Dhoni 55 not out) beat Australia (298/9; Marsh 131, Maxwell 48, Bhuvneshwar 4 for 45) by 6 wickets. Full ScorecardFormer India captain Mohammad Azharuddin has praised Virat Kohli for his consistency in international cricket. Virat Kohli on Tuesday blasted his way to 104 as India claimed a dramatic six-wicket victory over Australia in the second one day international at the Adelaide Oval to level the three-match series at 1-1.Skipper Kohli hit his 39th ODI century as India successfully chased down their victory target of 299 for the loss of four wickets to send the series into a decider on Friday at Melbourne Cricket Ground.MS Dhoni, clearly suffering in the heat, smashed a huge six to bring the scores level and reach his half century before scoring the winning run with four balls to spare. Dhoni remained unbeaten on 55 off 54 balls while Dinesh Karthik scored 25 not out off 14 balls to take India home with four balls to spare.Dhoni was involved in two crucial partnerships. First he combined for 82 runs with captain Kohli and then stitched an unbroken 57-run stand with Karthik for the fifth wicket.Kohli took over under the lights on what remained a muggy evening and took his century off 108 balls, pumping his fist towards the dressing room after taking two runs to square leg to reach the milestone.Kohli, who became the 11th highest run-getter in the format during his 112-ball stay, now has 64 international centuries, third most after Sachin Tendulkar’s 100 hundreds and Ricky Ponting’s 71.advertisement”Virat Kohli’s consistency is very good. If he stays fit, he will reach the 100-century mark. He is way ahead of many great players as far as his consistency is concerned. He is a great player and India have hardly lost whenever he has scored a century,” Azahruddin told Sports Tak.Azhar also lauded Dhoni’s “match-winning knock” and praised the Indian team’s performance in the second ODI.”If you look at the trend whenever India’s top three score runs, we go on to win the match. Unfortunately, in the previous match we lost three early wickets, Rohit Sharma did score a century but we lost. But today, Virat Kohli batted extremely well and MS Dhoni too played well. Dhoni even got tired in the end but he kept his wicket intact. Dinesh Karthik alse batted well. Overall, India’s performance was very good,” Azhar said.”If you are out of practice and not playing domestic cricket, it becomes difficult to adjust to international cricket. I think that was reason Dhoni played slow innings in the first ODI but today he batted well. It was a match-winning knock.”Also Read | MS Dhoni has done this for years: Dinesh Karthik on match-winning stand in AdelaideAlso Read | Jasprit Bumrah salutes MS Dhoni: Legends don’t need to prove their worth to anyoneAlso Read | MS Dhoni overtakes Virat Kohli for highest average in successful run chasesFor sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byJepher Nickels Tags :Follow Virat KohliFollow MS DhoniFollow Dinesh KarthikFollow Mohammad Azharuddin Virat Kohli will score 100 international hundreds if he stays fit: Mohammed AzharuddinIndia vs Australia, 2nd ODI – Brief Scores: India (299/4; Kohli 104, Dhoni 55 not out) beat Australia (298/9; Marsh 131, Bhuvneshwar 4 for 45) by 6 wickets. Former India captain Mohammad Azharuddin praised Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni after India defeated Australia in the second to level the three-match series 1-1.advertisementlast_img read more

Unlike Captain Cool: MS Dhoni slammed for confronting umpire after no-ball controversy

first_img 3 Faf du Plessis du Plessis c Rahul Tripathi b Jaydev Unadkat Mid off Mid Wicket B Rajasthan RAJ Point 0 Jaydev Unadkat J. Unadkat No data available! 155/6 (20.0) third Man b Ben Stokes nb c Rahul Tripathi b Jaydev Unadkat 155/6 (20.0) Super Over Shardul Thakur S. Thakur Mid off Extras: 9 runs (B: 0, LB: 5, WD: 3, NB: 1, P: 0) 121.27 2 Imran Tahir I. Tahir m 15/3 ( du Plessis 4 Overs) , third Man Mid on Mid on Top Bowlers Top Bowlers 0 fine Leg Mid Wicket R Kedar Jadhav K. Jadhav c Ben Stokes b Jofra Archer graphs 43 0 Chennai CHE vs 0 Series Status: Player Of The Match: MS Dhoni 225 2 4 119/5 ( A. Rayudu 17.4 Overs) , Shreyas Gopal S. Gopal 155/6 MS Dhoni (c)(wk) MS Dhoni (c)(wk) b Ben Stokes 58 39 0 0 Ambati Rayudu (CHE) A. Rayudu (CHE) Riyan Parag R. Parag 7.66 4s 23 0 Point Mid Wicket 1 fine Leg 2 All batsmen are considered right handed Mid off Square Leg covers Mid off Suresh Raina S. Raina run out (Jofra Archer) Point Mid off b Dhawal Kulkarni c Shreyas Gopal b Ben Stokes 0 covers 100 Mid Wicket 0 Square Leg Square Leg 0 24/4 ( K. Jadhav 5.5 Overs) , Indian Premier League, 2019 Unlike Captain Cool: MS Dhoni slammed for confronting umpire after no-ball controversyFormer cricketers, including England great Michael Vaughan, have criticised MS Dhoni for uncharacteristically losing his cool and confronting the on-field umpire during a tense final over in the IPL 2019 match between Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals on Thursday. not out Top Batsmen Top Batsmen 9 0 3 3 r All batsmen are considered right handed 0 Mid off Square Leg 14 – Mid on 6s 151/7 1 10 1 5/2 ( S. Raina 1.5 Overs) , 70 Mid Wicket 16.66 All batsmen are considered right handed third Man Dhawal Kulkarni D. Kulkarni 1 Deepak Chahar D. Chahar Mid on Ravindra Jadeja (CHE) R. Jadeja (CHE) 3 Square Leg 8 144/6 ( MS Dhoni 19.3 Overs) , 31 0 third Man 0 3 Match Ended fine Leg 4 Toss: CHE elected to field Indian Premier League, 2019 Time: (GMT) | 20:00 (Local Time) 57 151/7 Mid on 7.75 Ravindra Jadeja R. Jadeja not out commentary Scorecard Point 0 0 run out (Jofra Archer) (20.0) 4 All batsmen are considered right handed Square Leg Mid Wicket 2/33 (4) fine Leg Point 4 (20.0) All batsmen are considered right handed 10 covers 0 1 0 MS Dhoni (CHE) MS Dhoni (CHE) third Man 7 S/R Chennai Point Mitchell Santner M. Santner not out covers Mid Wicket (20.0) 24 fine Leg 0/1 ( S. Watson 0.4 Overs) , Rajasthan Bowling RAJ Bowling Shane Watson S. Watson b Dhawal Kulkarni Ben Stokes B. Stokes 134.88 covers Referee: Prakash Bhatt (IND) Umpires: Ulhas Gandhe (IND), Bruce Oxenford (AUS) and Chris Gaffaney (NZ) Chennai beat Rajasthan by 4 wickets c Ben Stokes b Jofra Archer Mid on 3 o 0 4 w Jofra Archer J. Archer wd 333.33 Square Leg All batsmen are considered right handed third Man e/r 1 0 0 Mid on All batsmen are considered right handed 3 covers Rajasthan RAJ 3 Point 2/20 (4) view more view less view full scorecard Fall of Wickets 1 not out 19 Mid off 0 47 0 0 1 fine Leg Chennai CHE third Man 0 Rajasthan Chennai batting CHE batting 58 (43) 1 4.66 0 0 covers fine Leg 13 Deepak Chahar (CHE) D. Chahar (CHE) Match Ended 4.75 6 1 Ambati Rayudu A. Rayudu c Shreyas Gopal b Ben Stokes 57 (47) 4 advertisement Indian Premier League, 2019, Match 25 India Today Web Desk JaipurApril 12, 2019UPDATED: April 12, 2019 12:52 IST MS Dhoni hit a match-winning half-century for Chennai Super Kings against Rajasthan Royals on Thursday ( Courtesy by BCCI)HIGHLIGHTS MS Dhoni has been fined 50 percent of his match fee for breaching the IPL Code of ConductDhoni stormed onto the pitch and confronted on-field umpire Ulhas Gandhe over a no-ball callDhoni hit a match-winning half-century for Chennai Super Kings in Jaipur on ThursdayMS Dhoni became the first-ever player to win 100 Indian Premier League (IPL) as captain on Thursday when Chennai Super Kings piped Rajasthan Royals in a last-ball thriller in Jaipur. However, the major landmark was overshadowed by Dhoni’s uncharacteristic outburst at on-field umpires during the last over of a tense chase.Chennai Super Kings had needed 18 from the last over to secure a win in Jaipur. The visitors began the over well with Ravindra Jadeja hitting Ben Stokes for a six in the first ball but Rajasthan Royals pulled things back with the wicket of MS Dhoni in the third ball of the over.With 9 needed off the last three balls, New Zealand all-rounder Mitchell Santner walked out to bat for CSK. After Ben Stokes delivered the fourth ball of the over, on-field umpire Ulhas Gandhe signaled a no-ball for a waist-high full toss. However, Gandhe retracted his decision after leg-umpire Bruce Oxenford hinted it wasn’t a waist-high no-ball.Miffed with the lack of clarity from Gandhe, Dhoni stormed onto the pitch and confronted the umpire. Non-striker Ravindra Jadeja also joined the conversation but the revised decision stayed and Dhoni headed back to the dug-out disappointed.It was surprising to see Dhoni, known for holding his nerves even in the trickiest of situations, loose his cool and walk onto the pitch and have an intense argument with the on-field umpire.Several members from the cricket fraternity, including experts and former cricketers, have questioned Dhoni’s uncharacteristic act.While @msdhoni is right in saying what he is, he isn’t right in entering the ground and arguing his case.The umpire did signal a no ball.advertisementBoria Majumdar (@BoriaMajumdar) April 11, 2019This is not a good look for the game … No place at all for a Captain to storm onto the pitch from the Dugout … !! #IPLMichael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) April 11, 2019The umpire is well within his right to overturn a No-Ball or any decision on the field for that matter. Surprised with how Dhoni handled it. It was so unlike Captain Cool #RRvCSKHemang Badani (@hemangkbadani) April 11, 2019No ball or not, WHAT ON EARTH IS MS Dhoni doing walking on to the field once he’s dismissed. Bizarre this. Weak weak umpiring. #RRvCSKRaunak Kapoor (@RaunakRK) April 11, 2019Umpiring standards have been pretty low in this #IPL and that was a no-ball given and reversed. Enough to feel crossed and miffed. But the opposition captain has no right to walk out on the pitch after being dismissed. Dhoni set a wrong precedent tonight. #RRvCSK #IPLAakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) April 11, 2019Granted that it was poor communication from the umpires, but it was in bad taste that #Dhoni stormed on to the field. Very surprised that Murali Kartik didn’t even ask him about it in the post-match chat #RRvCSK #RRvsCSK #IPL2019 #IPL #IPL19Arun Venugopal (@scarletrun) April 11, 2019Someone needs to tell MSD that the umpire isn’t Deepak ChaharSiddhartha Vaidyanathan (@sidvee) April 11, 2019MS Dhoni storms onto field to argue with umpire. Never seen that before. Should have got bigger fine than half his match fee https://t.co/iWadwcgMHxPeter Lalor (@plalor) April 11, 2019MS Dhoni has been fined 50 per cent of match fees for violating code of conduct, that is for trying to intimidate the umpire. It’s time for other captains to keep walking on to the turf and interrupting the game #IPL #RRvCSKAmol Karhadkar (@karhacter) April 11, 2019Since the celebrations are almost done, want to say this. Disappointed as an MSD fan that My Captain Cool lost his calm and entered into the ground. Not at all cool. #DefinitelyNotADhoniThing #CSK #CSKvRRVamsi Kaka (@vamsikaka) April 11, 2019Doesn’t anyone feel it was utterly disgraceful for the captain of the batting team to walk out on the field to argue with the umpires? No? Ok. Me alone, then. #CSKvKXIP #MSDhoni #SpiritOfTheGameSuhrud Godbole (@suhrudgodbole) April 11, 2019Today MS Dhoni has turned captain uncool. Umpire maybe wrong, but you don’t expect Dhoni to behave that way.Shantanu N Sharma (@shantanunandan2) April 11, 2019Level of umpiring in @IPL has seriously gone so low! Never seen @msdhoni losing his cool & heading to the field to argue with umpires! That’s a first! #IPL2019 #CSKvRRTridib Baparnash (@TridibIANS) April 11, 2019Eventually, Dhoni was fined 50 per cent of his match fee after his outburst. An IPL press release Dhoni had admitted to breaching the tournament’s Code of Conduct.”MS Dhoni, the Chennai Super Kings captain, was fined 50 per cent of his match fees for breaching the Indian Premier League’s (IPL) Code of Conduct during his team’s match against Rajasthan Royals at Jaipur.”advertisement”Mr Dhoni admitted to the Level 2 offence 2.20 of the IPL’s Code of Conduct and accepted the sanction,” the release said.Despite all the last-over drama, MItchell Santner kept his cool and delivered a win for Chennai Super Kings by hitting a big six when three runs were needed off the last ball.Also Read | MS Dhoni fined after fierce on-field argument with umpiresAlso Read | IPL 2019: Ambati Rayudu, MS Dhoni smash Rajasthan Royals as CSK edge closer to playoffsAlso See:For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byAkshay Ramesh Tags :Follow MS DhoniFollow IPL 2019Follow Chennai Super KingsFollow Rajasthan RoyalsFollow Ben Stokeslast_img read more

Inspired by Chris Gayle, Ross Taylor hopes to play 2023 World Cup

first_imgInspired by Chris Gayle, Ross Taylor hopes to play 2023 World CupAt 35, the upcoming event could be Ross Taylor’s final World Cup bow but he says if his body allows he may still be playing in another showpiece eventadvertisement Press Trust of India LondonMay 26, 2019UPDATED: May 26, 2019 20:04 IST Ross Taylor is inspired by the longevity of Chris GayleHIGHLIGHTSRoss Taylor is preparing to play in his fourth World CupAt 39, Ross Taylor is inspired by West Indian Chris Gayle who is going to play his 5th World Cup at the same ageNew Zealand face West Indies in their final World Cup warm-up game at the Oval on MondayNew Zealand batting mainstay Ross Taylor is preparing to play in his fourth World Cup but he has not ruled out featuring in another one four years later as he get “inspired” by West Indian Chris Gayle.At 35, the upcoming event could be the New Zealand batting great’s final World Cup bow but he says if his body allows he may still be playing in another showpiece event.For that, he does not have to look far for inspiration as he is keen to follow the 39-year-old ‘Universe Boss’ Gayle, for whom age has proven merely a number with runs scored and sixes struck aplenty.”I’m 35 but you never really know what is to come. Chris Gayle is probably an inspiration – he is 39 in this World Cup and I am 39 at the next, so it is not a simple matter,” Taylor, who will be playing in his fourth World Cup, was quoted as saying by the ICC website.”You never know, this will probably be my last World Cup but if these hamstrings and calves hold together then maybe I can be back in a few years.”New Zealand face West Indies in their final World Cup warm-up game at the Oval on Monday. They had beaten India by six wickets on Saturday and Taylor had scored 71.Taylor said he’s keen to keep pressure at a minimum over the coming weeks.”My approach to the World Cup is not necessarily a mindset of going out there just to enjoy it,” explained Taylor.advertisement”You always put a lot of pressure on yourself in big tournaments – pressure comes with it whether you think about it or not, so it is about managing those moments.”No Kiwi comes close to 67 centuries or fifties he has in ODI cricket but with a World Cup trophy still absent from his cabinet, the work is not done yet. New Zealand were finalists four years ago.”I think you have to pace yourself in a tournament like this, it is a long time and the way our schedule is, there are a lot of games at the start and a bit of a break in the middle. The way you rest and train between games is going to be very important,” he said.”When it comes to a warm-up you just treat it as that and then get out of the game what you want to get out of it. For us, we have not played as a team for two or three months, so it was about going out there and testing our skills out against the best.”It is going to be a lot tougher, making the final four years ago we played a lot of games at home and we knew our conditions very well. If you get off to a good start and get onto a roll, you can get into those semi-finals and suddenly you are only two wins away from winning it,” said Taylor.Also Read | World Cup 2019: Chris Gayle treats fans with autographs and selfies during rain break in warm-upAlso Read | Pakistan can end World Cup losing streak against India: Inzamam-ul-HaqFor sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byAjay Tiwari Tags :Follow Ross TaylorFollow Chris GayleFollow ICC Cricket World Cup 2019last_img read more

World Cup 2019: Eoin Morgan 1st England cricketer to play 200 ODIs

first_imgWorld Cup 2019: Eoin Morgan 1st England cricketer to play 200 ODIsEngland under the leadership of Eoin Morgan are considered as the favourites to clinch the World Cup 2019. They have been unbeatable in a one-day series in more than two years, and are the hosts too.advertisement Saurabh Kumar LondonMay 30, 2019UPDATED: May 30, 2019 17:40 IST England captain Eoin Morgan brought up his 46th ODI fifty off 50 balls in World Cup opener. (AP Photo)HIGHLIGHTSMorgan had started his international career for Ireland in 2006 against Scotland.Eoin Morgan also completed 7,000 ODI runs in the opening matchMorgan played in English colours for the first time in 2009 against the West IndiesSkipper Eoin Morgan became the 1st player to play 200 One-day Internationals for England during the World Cup opener against South Africa at The Oval in London on thurday. Morgan had already broken Paul Collingwood’s record of maximum appearances in ODIs for England during the series against Pakistan.Eoin Morgan also completed his 7,000 ODI runs in the 26th over of the opening match when he pulled Lungi Ngidi for a huge six. Overall, England skipper has played 223 One Day Internationals and he represented his birth country Ireland in 23 ODIs.Before England, Morgan had played for Ireland. After successful youth stints for Middlesex, Morgan made his ODI debut for Ireland in 2006 against Scotland, but then switched to England ahead of the 2009 World Twenty20. He played his first game in English colours in 2009 against the West Indies in Bristol.Eoin Morgan took over as the captain of England after their disastrous campaign in the 2015 World Cup and has completely changed them into World beaters during the last four years. The hosts of World Cup 2019 have been awarded the favourites tags after they whitewashed Pakistan in a bilateral ODI series and much of it’s credit goes to the Ireland born southpaw.Morgan said his team was under no pressure with the favourites tag after South Africa chose to bowl at The Oval after losing the toss in the opening match of the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup on Thursday.He added: “We would have looked to do the same, just preferring chasing. The wicket looks really good. “Jofra (Archer) has come in and impressed. He’s very calm when he plays. He’s a very exciting prospect given this is the very start of his international career.advertisementAlso Read | World Cup 2019 favourites tag sits okay with England: Eoin MorganAlso Watch:For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted bySaurabh Kumar Tags :Follow World Cup 2019Follow Eoin MorganFollow EnglandFollow South Africalast_img read more

Salaam Cricket 2019: Wasim Akram is the best bowler, says Sunil Gavaskar

first_imgOther Videos from Sports 22:37 Wed, 23 Oct, 2019 A new start for BCCI: Sourav Ganguly after taking charge as board president 04:27 Wed, 23 Oct, 2019 Former India captain Sourav Ganguly takes over as 39th BCCI president 03:09 Thu, 17 Oct, 2019 Haven’t had a discussion about Ashwin’s future at KXIP yet, says coach Kumble 09:34 Mon, 14 Oct, 2019 Never aspired to become BCCI chief: Sourav Ganguly 05:16 Mon, 14 Oct, 2019 Sourav Ganguly likely to become new BCCI boss 09:04 Sat, 12 Oct, 2019 We will create Indian champions in Free Fire: Kiren Rijiju 02:16 Sat, 12 Oct, 2019 Watch: Free Fire India Today League trophy unveiled 03:11 Sat, 12 Oct, 2019 Watch: Kalli Purie speech at Free Fire India Today League trophy Load More Other Video CategoriesIndiaSportsMoviesSo SorryProgrammelast_img read more

World Cup 2019: Nicholas Pooran 118 in vain as Sri Lanka scrape past West Indies in thriller

first_img view more view less No data available! World Cup 2019: Nicholas Pooran 118 in vain as Sri Lanka scrape past West Indies in thrillerWorld Cup 2019: Sri Lanka defeated West Indies by 23 runs in a nail-biting game that stands inconsequential regarding the purposes of semi-final qualification. commentary graphs India Today Web Desk DurhamJuly 1, 2019UPDATED: July 2, 2019 08:07 IST Sri Lanka defeated West Indies in their World Cup 2019 game on Monday. (AP Photo)HIGHLIGHTSSri Lanka defeated West Indies by 23 runs on MondayAvishka Fernando scored 104 to get his maiden ODI tonBoth Sri Lanka and West Indies are out of the World Cup semi-finals contentionNicholas Pooran’s 118 went in vain as Sri Lanka defeated West Indies by 23 runs in a thriller at Riverside Ground on Sunday in a World Cup game that serves only an academic purpose.Had West Indies been successful in chasing down 339, it would have been the highest ever chase in World Cup history.Nicholas Pooran proved to be the biggest hurdle to Sri Lanka’s victory as he brought down the run-chase in sight with his century but Sri Lanka found their unlikely hero in Angelo Mathews, who bowled his first ball since December 2017, to produce a moment of magic and dimiss a dangerous looking Nicholas Pooran for 118.For most part of the game, a win for West Indies looked in sight as Nicholas Pooran and Fabian Allen kept the run-chase alive with their 83-stand but another mix-up in the middle forced Allen to leave the ground for 51.Defending the Sri Lankan total, Lasith Malinga, who has also been pick of the bowlers, got Sri Lanka their first breakthrough by removing West Indies opener Sunil Ambris (5) to get his 53rd World Cup wicket. Malinga struck again to get rid of Shai Hope (5) to leave West Indies reeling at 22.2 in 4.6 overs.West Indies had their hopes rested on their big-hitter Chris Gayle after losing two quick wickets. Gayle was dropped in the 7th over of the second innings when he tried to dug out a Malinga yorker while Kusal Mendis dropped a sitter to give a lifeline to Shirmon Hetmyer.However, the two batsmen could not capitalize on their gifted chances. Kasun Rajitha picked Chirs Gayle for 35 whereas, Hetmyer scored 37 balls before getting run out by a direct hit from Dhananjaya de Silva.advertisementSkipper Jason Holder had to depart when he mistimed his lofted shot to hand the balls to Jeevan Mendis at the mid-on while Carlos Braithwate was run out for 8.Earlier, put in to bat, Avishka Fernando’s maiden hundred in a solid batting display powered Sri Lanka to an imposing 338.Sri Lanka’s top order fired in unison with Fernando hitting a 103-ball 104, the first century for the Island nation in this world cup. His innings was studded with nine fours and two sixes.Opener Kusal Perera sent the ball eight times across the fence on the way to a 51-ball 64.Fernando played the role of sheet anchor, stitching 85 runs with Kushal Mendis and then sharing 58 and 67 with Angelo Mathews (26) and Lahiru Thirimanne (45 off 33), respectively, as Sri Lanka went beyond 250 for the first time in the tournament.With both teams already out of contention for a semifinal spot, Sri Lanka played with freedom as openers Karunaratne and Kusal Perera amassed 91 runs for no loss in 15 overs.After skipper Jason Holder removed his West Indies counterpart Dimuth Karunaratne (32), Kushal Perera too was back after getting run out.Kushal Mendis and Fernando then took Sri Lanka close to 200 before a remarkable caught-and-bowl effort by left-arm spinner Fabian Allen, in the 32nd over, ended the former’s stay.Mathews came up with an enterprising 20-ball 26 before a perfect yorker by Holder sent him back in the 40th over.Fernando and Thirimanne then joined hands to help Sri Lanka cross the 300-mark.Fernando completed his hundred in the 48th over with a couple of runs off Carlos Brathwaite but soon holed out to Allen off Cottrell’s bowling.Also Read | Surprised that there are questions on Dhoni’s batting everyday: Sanjay BangarAlso Read | MS Dhoni, Kedar Jadhav were trying to hit but pitch got pretty slow: Rohit SharmaAlso SeeFor sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byAnita Jat Tags :Follow World Cup 2019Follow West Indies vs Sri Lanka advertisement scorecard Nextlast_img read more

IPL franchises discuss new teams, BCCI wants stability first

first_img Indo-Asian News Service New DelhiJuly 14, 2019UPDATED: July 14, 2019 14:05 IST File photo: PTIHIGHLIGHTSIndian Premier League (IPL) franchises want an expansion of the league to 10 teamsBCCI officials want all bases covered first and don’t wish for a repeat of the 2011 fiascoRumours were rife that Adani Group had shown tremendous interest in having a team play from Ahmedabad back in 2010If a recent meeting between the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchises and stakeholders is anything to go by, the franchises want an expansion of the league to 10 teams. While the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) isn’t averse to the idea, the officials want all bases covered first and don’t wish for a repeat of the 2011 fiasco when the league had to go back from 10 to 8 teams due to certain issues.Speaking to IANS, a senior BCCI official said that talks and all are fine, but every step needs to be calculated well and the functionaries in the board need to help the franchises understand the ground reality before taking a step in the direction.”They are our stakeholders and the BCCI shares a very good relationship with the franchisees. We are concerned that such opaque behaviour and casual statements and remarks by someone in the senior professional management can unnecessarily mar the trust and relation between the BCCI and the franchisees,” the official said”Some people seem to thrive in creating misunderstandings in order to compensate for their lack of competence. When the time comes, we will have a sincere dialogue with the franchisees on this,” the official added.He went on to add that bringing stability in the BCCI should be the primary focus at present before looking to fulfil the common dream of having 10 teams in the league.”Even we want new teams, but we must take into account ground realities. But some people seem to think that they have become the owners of the BCCI and that they can sell the BCCI properties on a whim only to further their own interests. They seem to be selling fantasies to those who care to believe. Who is the BCCI? The collection of members. With the problems that have been going on for the last three years, the first order of the day is to bring sanity to the proceedings at the grassroots,” the official said.advertisement”An informal gathering which is not a forum under the BCCI constitution obviously cannot take decisions but they must discuss all these points as we encourage interactions and different viewpoints. If CEO Rahul Johri was aware of such a meeting, why did he not inform the office bearers of the same? Is transparency only something that must be confined to words?” he enquired.Looking at the lighter side, the official added: “Here we could not settle the number 4 batsman debate and someone seems to be hoping for 44 new players of a near-international level. Basics first please.”Interestingly, when Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals were suspended for two years, Rising Pune Supergiants and Gujarat Lions had come in specifically for that two-year period. While the contract was well documented, Pune owner Sanjeev Goenka had made it clear that he wanted to have a long run in the league if given an opportunity.Similarly, rumours were rife that the Adani Group had also shown tremendous interest in having a team play from Ahmedabad back in 2010, but that didn’t materialise.Only time will tell if the thought of expansion actually sees the light of day because while the BCCI officials also want an expansion, they wish for every positive and negative to be taken into account first.ALSO READ | Never got settled in any IPL franchise: Yuvraj SinghALSO READ | The contradictions and chaos that shattered India’s World Cup dreamALSO WATCH:For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byNayanika Sengupta Tags :Follow IPLFollow BCCI IPL franchises discuss new teams, BCCI wants stability firstA senior BCCI official said that talks and all are fine, but every step needs to be calculated well and the functionaries in the board need to help the franchises understand the ground reality before taking a step in the direction.advertisementlast_img read more

Disappointed with KL Rahul, he needs to back his game: Wasim Jaffer

first_img Press Trust of India MumbaiSeptember 5, 2019UPDATED: September 5, 2019 19:03 IST KL Rahul during a practice session (IANS Photo)HIGHLIGHTSKL Rahul managed to score just 101 runs in the two Tests against West Indies, which India won 2-0Rahul’s place in the team has been questioned due to his failure to own the opening slotRahul averages 36.82 in the opening slot, which he has occupied in 33 of the 36 games he has been part ofK L Rahul’s struggling run in the opening slot has left former India opener Wasim Jaffer baffled and he feels the Karnataka player seems caught in an unsolved jigsaw puzzle despite having the ability to do well.Rahul’s place in the team has been questioned due to his failure to own the opening slot despite being given a long rope by the team management. Rahul averages 36.82 in the opening slot, which he has occupied in 33 of the 36 games he has been part of.”I feel a little bit disappointed with K L Rahul because he has got so much ability, he is one of the guys (players) who has got 100 in all three formats (of the game),” Jaffer told reporters here.”And his mode of dismissals make me a bit disappointed because he gets out very softly at times. He has got a lot of ability and that is why he is getting so many chances, because people believe that he is going to come good.”The way he gets out and the way he does not get that many runs, that surprises me…I feel somewhere he is missing those puzzles (sic) in his jigsaw,” he said.Jaffer, who currently plays for Vidarbha, inaugurated the ‘Adams Wylie Physio Rehab Center’ instituted by the Indian Red Cross Society in Mumbai Central here.Rahul managed to score just 101 runs in the two Tests against West Indies, which India won 2-0.Asked whether Rahul has been struggling with the mental aspect of the game, Jaffer said, “Definitely it could be one of those things.”advertisement”I feel he just holds himself back and doesn’t express himself the way he expresses probably in first-class cricket, but the moment he goes into international cricket, I feel that he holds himself a little bit,” he added.According to Jaffer, who played 31 Tests and two ODIs for India, there is no issue with Rahul’s technique.”He has got the game, but somewhere I feel he does not express himself, the way he needs to. I think he needs to come out and back his game. Sometimes I feel he gets too defensive for no reason. He needs to score lot more consistently…,” he reasoned.Asked whether Rohit Sharma can be an opener in Tests, Jaffer opined, “He can be looked up to as an opening (batsman) because Rohit has the ability. Nobody expected him to open in the ODIs and score these many runs. Once you put him in that position, only then you will find out.”The domestic cricket legend also had a word of advice for young India and Mumbai opener Prithvi Shaw, saying he needs to “look at guys like Virat Kohli”.Shaw is currently suspended for eight months for an anti-doping violation.”He needs to look at senior players who put cricket as their priority, so he needs to look at himself and put cricket as priority and others things which is stopping him from doing that he needs to cut those,” he said.Though Jaffer lauded India’s performance in the West Indies as exceptional, he said the team needed to show similar dominance in other countries outside the sub-continent.”I feel, we need to see the domination of the Indian team in places like England, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa …. they have beaten Australia, beaten South Africa.”But that is where India need to show their domination when they tour these places, we still need to win a Test series in England, we still need to win a Test series in South Africa,” he signed off.Also Read | Ashes 2019: Steve Smith goes past Virat Kohli with 26th Test hundredAlso see:For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byNitin Kumar Tags :Follow KL RahulFollow Wasim Jaffer Disappointed with KL Rahul, he needs to back his game: Wasim JafferWasim Jaffer feels that KL Rahul holds himself back and doesn’t express himself the way he expresses probably in first-class cricket.advertisement Nextlast_img read more

Injured Hasan Ali out of Sri Lanka ODIs as Pakistan announce 16-man squad for home series

first_img Asian News International KarachiSeptember 21, 2019UPDATED: September 21, 2019 14:19 IST Pakistan’s pacer Hasan Ali (File Photo: IANS)HIGHLIGHTSMisbah-ul-Haq said that they have put together the best possible squadAbid Ali, Iftikhar, Mohammad Nawaz, Rizwan, Usman Shinwari and Hasnain have been recalledHasan Ali failed to find a spot as he is recovering from a back spasmPakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Saturday announced 16-man squad for a three-match ODI series against Sri Lanka.The head coach and chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq said that they have put together the best possible squad.”After thorough discussions with the members of the selection committee and meticulous planning, I feel we have put together the best possible squad,” PCB’s official website quoted Misbah-ul-Haq as saying.”These are the only 50-over matches we have this season and we want to make their optimum use. Over the course of my cricketing career, I have realised there are no easy games and there are no easy opponents in cricket,” he added.Abid Ali, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Usman Shinwari and Mohammad Hasnain have been recalled for the Sri Lanka series.”The five boys, who have been recalled, were straightforward selections. Iftikhar Ahmed is a batsman who can also bowl off-spin, providing the captain with necessary bowling depth as Sri Lanka boasts a few left-handers in their ranks. Mohammad Nawaz has been performing well in domestic matches,” Misbah-ul-Haq said.”Despite their strong performances, Moahmmad Rizwan, Usman Shinwari and Abid Ali were unlucky to miss out the World Cup squad. This is, however, a perfect opportunity for these players to prove their mettle in international cricket and cement their place in the one-day side,” he added.However, Hasan Ali failed to find a spot as he is recovering from a back spasm.Pakistan’s 16-man squad: Sarfaraz Ahmed (captain), Babar Azam (vice-captain), Abid Ali, Asif Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Sohail, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Shadab Khan, Usman Shinwari, Wahab Riaz.advertisementThe first ODI between Pakistan and Sri Lanka will be played on September 27 in Karachi.Also Read | Beating Afghanistan for first time was special: Hamilton Masakadza after farewell gameAlso see:For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byNitin Kumar Tags :Follow PCBFollow Pak vs SL Injured Hasan Ali out of Sri Lanka ODIs as Pakistan announce 16-man squad for home seriesPakistan vs Sri Lanka 2019: Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has announced squad for a three-match ODI series against Sri Lanka.advertisement Nextlast_img read more

Michael Moran’s Passion for the Plank

first_img Editors’ Recommendations A Guide to Raw Denim Jean Selection and Care Save Your Eyes from the Scourge of the Screens with the Best Blue-Light-Blocking Glasses for Men Besides fast fashion, today we also have fast furniture. Ikea is the most well known but now with Etsy and even the particle board cabinets found at Pottery Barn, many pieces of our furniture won’t be passed down to our kids (Hell, our movers refused to move anything from Ikea since it is so flimsy)So it is refreshing when we meet young and local wood workers like Michael James Moran. Michael is based in Charleston, South Carolina and has spent a lifetime making things.  Moran laughed, “My dad was a carpenter before going to medical school and becoming a college professor. There was always the notion that if you needed something you had to figure out how to make it!”In college Michael met a furniture maker in Charleston and started working with him developing his own sense of design and a better understanding of wood and furniture. At 23 he opened his own shop with zero business knowledge. “I am really glad I did it since I didn’t know a lot about opening a business  but luckily it worked,” he told us. Since then his business has grown by word of mouth and with the help of his fiance, Celia Gibson, who worked for the Tate in London in their publishing sector while in graduate school in London. “She knows art very well and is very good with finances so it made sense when she finished school for her to come aboard,” he explained.We sat down with him to hear more about his passion for the plank.Tell us a bit about where you source your wood?3-4 years ago we wanted to work with wood that we knew the source of. We want  to avoid suppliers and middle men and we want to work with the person putting their hands on the trees. We do not support clear cutters or big operations.Some of our vendors are second or third generation millers. They sell us either responsibly downed trees that were near the end of their life or trees that come down from storms. We got 1000 board feet from some Himalayan trees that came down from a tornado in Augusta, Georgia. We work with the City of Charleston tree crew so we can use what they take down if it is in good condition.  We went to Kentucky and stumbled upon a big chunk of walnut that was left from a trophy factory that closed down. We love to pass the story on about the wood, where it came from and how it feels as much as we can.What is your inspiration for furniture?I like the simplicity of modern lines. I also am influenced by Nakashima’s work. Also, pieces that are highly referential to its original form, showing the raw edges, etc.I spent a lot of my youth outside so I am always aware of nature and want to show the life of the trees before they were these objects. Once I made a pact never to cut anything down older than me. But I realized until I’m in my 90s there will never be a tree that I work with that will be younger to me. So it is a great patience game. What you do with it shouldn’t be fast.Where do you sell?90% is commission work. We sit down with people and get an idea of how the piece needs to work. We do have some  pieces I have made to sell and we can play with the form.We are working on a line of limited addition pieces in certain styles or made from a certain lot, tree or place. People can always come to the studio as well. Most pieces there are available for sale. People usually give a ring to give a heads up! A Breakdown of All the Major Types of Car Racing A Beginner’s Guide to Road Biking Where to Find Artwork to Match Your Style last_img read more

Partida: Ushering in Tequila’s Golden Age

first_img 9 Best Tequilas (and 3 Mezcals) for Palomas, According to Bartenders The Best Blended Scotch Whiskies to Add to Your Collection Mezcal Unión Takes a People-First Approach to Making Spirits 1. The Blanco is the “purest expression” of tequila. 2. Jose Valdez recommends drinking Reposado with grilled meats and strong, Mexican flavors. 3. Anejo is perfect when paired with dark chocolate desserts. 4. The Elegante is aged for forty months to obtain a cognac-like quality. 5. Jose Valdez “lived” in the Partida distillery for three years to thoroughly learn the process. Talking Rum, Cocktails, and Tiki with The Bamboo Room’s Kevin Beary center_img Maestro Dobel Diamante Blends 3 Tequilas Into One Everyone wants to have a passion in life. We are told that having a passion makes us unique and makes our lives more fulfilling, makes our days pass with a greater sense of satisfaction.  Jose Valdez has a passion, and that passion is tequila.Who is Jose Valdez? He is the Master Distiller, Production Manager and Taster of Partida Tequila, the top-quality tequila that is taking the American market by storm. Mr. Valdez throws all of his youthful energy, intelligence and insight into Partida, putting care and thought into each and every step of his product—from production to consumption.Mr. Valdez joined Partida in 2004, when the brand was in its infancy. Coming from a background in engineering, Jose found himself involved in all areas of the company, but began focusing on the distilling process. He moved to Amatitan, Mexico (located near the cities of Guadalajara and Tequila) and “lived” at Partida’s distillery.“At that time it was a small distillery,” Mr. Valdez says. “I spent three years working every day, developing the formula, the recipe and establishing the quality of the tequila. Suddenly I became an expert, and three years ago we moved to a distillery in Tequila, which is three times the capacity of our initial operation.”In order to ensure that Partida produced nothing but high-end tequila, the most important part of the distilling process that Mr. Valdez implemented was using the cleanest and easiest to control stainless steel ovens on the market. Using stainless steel ovens allowed Mr. Valdez and his team to cook their agaves (aged 7-10 years), evenly and slowly.Jose Valdez’s passion and dedication are evident in the Partida Tequila brand.“You don’t need to create a new recipe when making tequila,” explains Mr. Valdez. “If you want to be efficient, you can use the stone ovens to cook the agaves as fast as possible. With the stainless steel ovens, you can really control the process and focus on the flavors to create the best taste possible.”Partida delivers their tequila in four different grades: Blanco, Reposado, Añejo, and Elegante. The Blanco is the “purest expression of tequila” and only rests in stainless steel tanks for two weeks before it is bottled. The Reposado is aged for six months, which is on the longer end of the spectrum for that specific tequila grade, in Jack Daniels bourbon barrels. The Añejo (which means aged for a year) is also stored in Jack Daniels barrels, but is allowed to rest for a year and half—again at the longer end of the spectrum. Finally, the Elegante is aged forty months, which gives it a quality closer to a cognac.Mr. Valdez doesn’t just know how to make the tequila; he also knows how it should be consumed. Over the years, he has taken tasting courses in order to expand his understanding of the way different culinary approaches and techniques work with his tequila. During the past six months, he has hosted pairing dinners in California and New York to show how each grade of Partida complements specific foods and courses.“The Blanco is perfect for fresh appetizers like ceviche or a good salad with fruit and citrus,” says Mr. Valdez. “The Reposado is better for complex flavors that come with grilled tuna, beef and steak, as well as strong Mexican plates that highlight mole. Añejo is perfect for dark, rich chocolates. And the Elegante makes a nice fit with tres leches.”It’s no secret that we at The Manual are big fans of tequila. With brands like Partida, the liquor is experiencing a renaissance that is hard to ignore. And with passionate, multi-talented distillers and producers, like Jose Valdez, behind the scenes it’s easy to see why we could very well be entering the Golden Age of Tequila. Editors’ Recommendations last_img read more

Winter Hiking: Don’t Forget to Bring a…

first_img The Best Men’s Chukka Boots for 2019 You Need One (Or More) of the Best Men’s Henley Shirts in Your Wardrobe The Best Men’s Waterproof Boots for Tackling All Weather Yes, You Can Wear Boots to the Office: Here are the Best Pairs When the weather is warm and the sun is shining, hiking can be a remarkably simple affair: get a pair of good boots (or even a pair of running shoes), make sure you have plenty of water, and… you’re basically set. For a day hike on a prepared trail, at any rate.Hiking in the winter, especially in the snow, is a dramatically different undertaking than fair weather trekking. (Though to many of us winter weather is in fact our definition of fair weather.) There are multiple factors to be weighed, from the varying safety considerations merited by snow, wind, and the temperature, to the amount of food and water you’ll need, to the time it will take during a snowy winter’s day to complete that same route you jogged with ease last summer. Does your footwear offer the traction and ankle support you need on ice? Are your boots waterproofed? Your body blazes through calories trying to keep you warm, so did you remember to bring along way more food than you would bring for a warm weather trek? Did you inform people of your planned route and approximate schedule? All things to think about, sir…Related: Best In Snow, Best In ShowYou’ll need to carefully assess your own fitness and experience level and choose winter hikes appropriate for you and partners (oh yeah, never hike alone if you can avoid it), but today we’re going to discuss a few products that will give you an edge, keep you safe, and keep you comfortable when you head out for a hike in that glorious season we call winter.Treat Your Feet to Great Boots – Asolo TPS 535 V Hiking Boots You don’t need fancy Gortex this or polyurethane that to make a great hiking boot, you need great design. Solo hiking boots are so comfortable you will forget you’re not wearing a worn pair of sneakers, and that’s true right out of the box. They are largely made of full grain leather but are reliably water resistant, and their “dual density” outsole and soft, anatomic footbed will both protect and cradle your foot for hours on end. These boots keep you warm, they keep you dry, and they support your foot and ankles. That’s what you need during a winter hike. Trust me: mine have been up Mt. Rainier, Mt. Whitney (four times), San Gorgonio…Keep Your Fingers Warm. You Need Them – Zippo Hand WarmerThis is your father’s hand warmer! Or perhaps even your grandfather’s! Or at least, this is the same type of simple, reliable hand warmer men have relied on for decades. Zippo’s basic, rugged, reliable hand warmer uses a little bit of safe, internal flame to keep your hands warm for hours on end. When the hand warmer is topped off with fluid, it will give off heat for as long as twelve hours. Slip one into a pocket, snuggle one down into your sleeping bag, or tuck it under your cap. Warm hands are yours for about fifteen bucks. And as these things are made by Zippo, you know they’ll last a lifetime. Maybe your grandson will use yours on a winter hike someday…Get a Grip, Even On Ice or Snow – Petzl Vasak CramponsYou don’t need to be headed out for a momentous mountaineering adventure to consider a pair of crampons. Hell, they might be a good idea to use for navigating your driveway if it’s snowy enough. And if you’re going for an overland trek that involves any elevation changes, you’ll be wise and well-served to bring a pair of crampons along. Not only will they help you gain traction as you ascend a frosty peak, but they’ll help you plant your steps with care as you make your way down through the snow, gravity and a low coefficient of friction be damned. The Petzl Vasak Crampons offer plenty of size adjustment and will attach to most boots (and even to some shoes) with ease, so you can remove them or attach them as the terrain changes.Give Your Feet a Hand – York Nordic Hiking PolesIf you think hiking poles are superfluous, then you’re just the right person to be reading this article! Because… you don’t know what yer talkin’ about, mister. Hiking poles might not be needed for a pleasant stroll along a graded trail in the merry month of May, but when you’re making your way over snow and/or ice, they are essential. Not only do hiking poles offer you additional points of contact with the ground, crucial for preventing slips, sprains, and falls, especially in icy conditions, but they also take some of the load off your feet. Make your arms do some of the work of carrying your pack and your person instead of just lazily swinging along! Lazy… lazy arms…. These aircraft0grader aluminum York Nordic Hiking Poles collapse for travel or storage, feature good grips, loops that help prevent losing them, and the all-important snow baskets you’ll need to use when hiking in the winter.You’re Never Alone With an Avy Beacon – Pieps DSP Sport Avalanche TransceiverEven if you’re not hiking (or climbing or snowboarding or cross-country skiing) alone, it’s a good idea of have an avalanche beacon (AKA “avy beacon”). If you ARE heading out alone in winter, you’d be nuts to do it without one. Avalanche beacons, like Pieps DSP Sport Avalanche Transceiver, send out a signal that will help vector search and rescue teams to you, even in the unlikely and unfortunate even you become buried in snow. You can also consider one of the many GPS beacons on the market, though many of those require a line of sight to the sky which, when buried, you will lack.Take It Off. And Put It On – Champion Men’s Double Dry Long Sleeve Tee Staying warm in the winter time is all about layers. Even when it’s bitingly cold, if you are moving along with vigor, you are going to warm up and likely sweat. When that happens, you’ll want to be wearing a moisture-wicking shirt like this 100% polyester garment from Champion; a shirt like this should be one of several layers If you start getting too warm, take off a layer. If you’re too cold, add a layer. But whatever  you do, make sure the layer of clothing touching your skin won’t hold moisture (cotton is a bad idea, for example) and can be easily removed if it gets wet or you get too warm. Editors’ Recommendations How to Treat a Snake Bite When You’re Stuck in a Worst-Case Scenariolast_img read more

Throttle Jockey: the Suzuki SV650 do-it-all fun machine is just right

first_img Editors’ Recommendations What Kind of Motorcycle Should I Get? A Comprehensive Guide to Motorcycle Types A Beginner’s Guide to Road Biking We’re well into riding season now but our focus on certain bikes continues, with a closer look this time around at the Swiss Army Knife of a bike, the Suzuki SV650.Originally introduced in 1999, the midrange-in-every-way Suzuki SV650, commonly referred to by riders simply as an “SV,” was an immediate hit. Its combination of a stout and torquey liquid-cooled V-twin engine, dialed-in handling, comfy ergos, sporty stance (with a slightly more sporty and bikini-faired “S” version also offered) and triple-disc brakes on such an affordable bike made the SV650 one of the iconic bikes of the new millennium.Related: Suzuki takes its Expertise to the Moon in Seeking the Google Lunar XPrizeRight out of the gate, riders found the SV650 excelled at pretty much anything: sport riding, club racing, DIY sport-touring, commuting, bopping around town, and so on. In 2002, Suzuki added fuel injection to the SV, which bumped up power considerably. Since then, the SV has been continually refined while maintaining its basic goodness: a low price, a high fun factor, great handling, and the ability to cover multiple categories of riding.The SV is a widespread success in part because it’s both approachable and docile enough for first-time riders to learn on and punchy enough for veteran riders to enjoy and modify. The SV doesn’t come with top-shelf gear in order to maintain a reasonable MSRP, but since it’s pretty much a blank slate, it’s a great canvas for easy modification and improvement. As such, a vast aftermarket dedicated to the bike exists today.The 2017 SV650 continues the tradition of those that came before it. It’s still an easy way to get riding, and a bike that will continue to entertain for years to come. This year’s model includes ABS brakes for $7,500, just a $500 bump over the base model. Minor updates include more power (always a good thing), an upgraded digital dash and it even went on a bit of a diet and dropped some weight, in case you didn’t.Flashy? No. Capable? Absolutely. While the SV650 would seem to be a basic bike, it’s really not. Its ability to entertain and easily adapt to different kinds of riding make it both a bargain and a long-lasting source of adventure. And if you want to take it off road, well, Suzuki has a solution for that as well. Slopestyle Mountain Bike Champion Emil Johansson Talks Tricks, Staying Fit, and Morecenter_img Behold the World’s Most Adventure-Ready Electric Motorcycle 6 Fastest Cars in the World Right Now 1. 2017 Suzuki SV650 2. 2017 Suzuki SV650 3. 2017 Suzuki SV650 4. 2017 Suzuki SV650 5. 2017 Suzuki SV650 6. 2017 Suzuki SV650 7. 2017 Suzuki SV650 8. 2017 Suzuki SV650 9. 2017 Suzuki SV650last_img read more

Tips for Buying an Engagement Ring from an Expert

first_img Learn Guitar (and Don’t Give Up) With the Fender Play App Are Fermented Pizzas a Trend to Watch? We Asked a Pro to Find Out 6 Ways to Make a Difference in the LGBTQ+ Community Many people buy diamonds only a handful of times in their lives, and for some, only once: when they get married. It’s hard to become an expert when you only try something once. So, before engagement season (November-February) gets into full swing, we found someone to bring us up to speed. After nearly 30 years in the diamond business, Chris Del Gatto has had his hands on more diamonds than you or I could imagine. Del Gatto founded his company Delgatto after decades working as a diamond cutter and diamond merchant. Through the company’s secondary diamond marketplace, I Do Now I Don’t, Del Gatto hopes to revolutionize the secondary jewelry market. Already, over 40 percent of the diamonds bought on the platform are purchased through people’s phones. We talked to Del Gatto about how to buy the perfect engagement ring, and unsurprisingly, he felt that the perfect engagement ring is really about buying the perfect diamond. The size of diamonds is of course measured in carats, and there are also ratings for things like color and clarity. But for Del Gatto, knowing how those things works will only get you part of the way to finding the perfect rock. Here are his tips for getting the rest of the way.Do Your Aesthetic ResearchDel Gatto says the diamond-buying process is an extremely personal choice, especially when considering diamonds for wedding rings. “Whenever I hear regret, it’s because something else drove the decision besides passion,” he says. Del Gatto’s advice is to take the investment seriously by doing a significant amount of research into different diamond aesthetics. This probably should include lots of in-person ring shopping with your fiance, even if you plan on buying online. “Why wouldn’t you go in person and just try on things with your fiance? You know, it’s kind of a fun thing to do anyway, but then you get a sense of, ‘you know, a 2-carat is bigger than I thought, I wouldn’t feel comfortable wearing it everyday,’” he says.Find Someone you Can Trust to Talk about OptionsIf possible, it’s best to find a third-party source who can be unbiased when you bring them your buying criteria. Up-selling is in a salesperson’s job description, so it’s much harder to get honest advice from a person from whom you will likely buy a diamond.For example, many people believe color and clarity are the most important aspects of a diamond, but for Del Gatto, the cut of the diamond (and who is doing the cutting) is the most important element for what people are describing when they say a diamond pops or sparkles. While you may be able to use scores in a diamond resale listing to rate the color and clarity, you may not know the ins and outs of different diamond manufacturers. An unbiased source can help you compare brands and cuts.When in doubt, call in an independent third-party appraiser–someone who has no stake in an evaluation and will provide you with an accurate value of the diamond. This site has a helpful, interactive list of independent appraisers by state.Don’t Listen to Advertiser RulesOne common rule you may hear is that a diamond for an engagement ring should cost the equivalent of three months salary. Del Gatto says this advice comes from advertising departments and should be ignored. Your budget is totally personal and may be more or less depending on your financial circumstances, the timeline of your engagement and wedding, and what type of ring your partner can imagine wearing long-term.Check out the Secondary/Estate MarketplaceAs is the case with cars, buying diamonds in the secondary market can save you a great deal of money over paying retail. But unlike cars, diamonds won’t continue to depreciate in value forever. As a commodity, diamonds will fall to a wholesale price below which they won’t drop. For this reason, buying on the secondary market can save you a great deal of cash, especially if you’ve honed your aesthetic preferences and are looking for an older style cut.Put Everything into the Diamond, Not the MountingWhile much of Del Gatto’s advice boils down to making a personal decision based on passion and research, the one hard rule he does recommend is putting all your funds into the diamond and not the mounting. Because the diamond is a commodity, it won’t lose value over time. The mounting, on the other hand, has a high mark-up and will depreciate as passing trends make it less desirable. If, in the future, your financial circumstances change, then you can change the mounting to your liking while maintaining the beautiful diamond investment you made to begin with.To summarize, do your research, follow your interests, follow unbiased advice, and your partner will have a rock they are happy with for as long as the relationship lasts (hopefully, forever). Editors’ Recommendations Why Your Desk Chair Matters and the 9 Best Ones to Boost Your Productivity How to Shave With a Straight Razorlast_img read more

Farm to Fork Fondo is Great Eating and Awesome Cycling

first_imgFarm to Fork Fondo is a highlight of the year for anyone who loves food, farmers, and bicycles in any combination. For the third year in a row, you can cycle around bucolic northeastern farmland while stopping off to eat incredible meals from food grown by local farmers.  Perhaps unsurprisingly, Tyler Wren, a retired professional cyclist and owner of Wrenegade Sports started the annual event three years ago. “One of our core goals is to encourage a richer mutual understanding between farmers and consumer,” Wren says. “Many of our participants live in urban areas, and this may be one of the only opportunities they have to meet the families who invest a lifetime in feeding the rest of us.”Riders sign up for anything from ten miles to 100 miles, stopping off at local farms to meet the owners and workers, while noshing on chef-made bites that highlight what the farm grows. It’s not a race, but you’ll likely be speeding to each stop once you get a taste of the literal farm-to-table food being served.There are several locations this year, starting in June and going through September: the Hudson Valley, the Finger Lakes, Vermont, Pennsylvania Dutch country, Maine, and the Berkshires. You can do all or pick your favorites. But honestly, how do you pick a favorite from that lineup?In addition to getting food, exercise, new friendships, new perspectives, a post-event beer, and a bitchin’ tee-shirt (among other things) participating in Farm to Fork Fondo helps raise money for local charities while also economically stimulating the communities. For example, last year, the Vermont-leg brought together 500 riders from all over the country, infusing around $425,000 into the local communities. They also gave $3,000 to charities like the Vermont Foodbank, The Agricultural Stewardship Association, and The Stockbridge Historical Meeting House.  Don’t be intimidated if you’re not in Tour de France shape–this is designed to be manageable for virtually everyone. Don’t have a bike? No worries, there are rentals available and even special lodging discounts if you’re coming in from out of town. Registration begins January 15th. Keep checking the website as they update the routes, farms, and even menus for the 2017 events.It’s hard to imagine a better time involving a bicycle… Editors’ Recommendations The Opus OP15′ Is a Tricked-Out, Off-Road-Ready Travel Trailer Why Your Desk Chair Matters and the 9 Best Ones to Boost Your Productivity Sip On the Original Stormtrooper Beer While You Wait for the Next Star Wars Movie How Full Harvest and Misfits Market Are Saving Ugly Produce America’s Oldest City Has a Super-Modern Dining and Drinking Scenelast_img read more

Five Fantastic Outdoor Adventures in the Outer Hebrides, Scotland

first_img Deep Sleep: The World’s Most Incredible Underwater Hotel Rooms How to Shave With a Straight Razor 14 Scandinavian Clothing Brands You Need to Know Editors’ Recommendations The Best Campgrounds Near Major U.S. Cities Editor’s Note: Last November we had the pleasure of spending 10 captivating days in Scotland. Below is but one adventure of many from our stay. We hope the joy we experienced comes through in all our posts and missives from our adventure, which no doubt read better with a wee dram in hand.The view from our flight from Edinburgh, Scotland, to the archipelago of the Outer Hebrides was what we would imagine it’s like flying to Middle Earth. Foggy, rocky with broad-brush strokes of neon green hills and cerulean blue seas. A friend noted that the Hebrides are the Alaska of Scotland and he is spot on.After spending a day on the very remote and rural island of North Uist, landing at Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis was akin to dropping into a bustling metropolis. Granted it is the largest town in the Outer Hebrides but the population is a tiny 8,000. Founded in the 9th century by Vikings, the town was and still is a prominent port. Our first stop in Stornoway was a visit to the design studio and shop of Rosie Wiscombe of By Rosie.Rosie WiscombeHailing from Devon, England, Rosie took a year off after school and traveled to New Zealand where she met her partner Shawn who is from Stornoway. She decided to move to his hometown with him in 2010 and, after surviving one very harsh winter, she was hooked. Rosie also discovered the wonderful world of Harris Tweed, which is produced nearby on the island. Her company began designing hats, bags, and outerwear with the handsome woolen cloth and her business started to boom.When Wiscombe isn’t behind a sewing machine, she and Shawn love exploring the wild rough landscape of the Hebrides. They are both avid outdoor lovers and a kayak or camping tent is always at the ready.We asked Rosie to give us her top favorite adventures in the Hebrides. Read on and get inspired. Note: The whiskey seems to be key to keeping the cold at bay.Skim boarding the length of Traigh Mhor, LewisSo many beaches and so much sky. Seeing the mountains of the west coast of Scotland in the distance. The light and color at the this beach is my favorite on the island. The sense of space and freedom is unmatched.Winter camping at the hop of the Harris hillsThere’s nothing like the blue black winter skies- full of stars and the chance of seeing the aurora. Huddling up together in your sleeping bags, watching countless shooting stars and the distant twinkling of the tiny villages below you. A wee nip of whiskey to keep out the chill, of course.Wild swimming at Tolsta head, LewisA big group of friends, a thick wetsuit and a high tide make for a wild, exhilarating and noisy excursion! Exploring caves, jumping into crystal clear pools and discovering the bizarre and colorful flora and fauna of the seashore.Sea kayaking off Tiumpan head on LewisLaunching from a village slipway on a sunny evening, in search of whales and dolphins. Paddling out far from shore, feeling small in the emerald ocean, and being surrounded by a pod of Risso’s dolphins. Exhilarating and humbling.Colonizing a desert island for a weekendThe beauty of sea kayaks is the freedom to explore the many wee islands just off shore. Crossing a sound in a fair swell and arriving on pure white sands. The never-ending dusk of summer nights around a fire, in the pure solitude of your own island. Heaven. Runners, Say Goodbye to Chafing with Path Projects Running Shorts last_img read more

Lotus Cars Will Get a Massive Cash Injection to Compete With Porsche

first_img Editors’ Recommendations 6 Fastest Cars in the World Right Now Icons of America: Taking a Corvette Road Trip Along Route 66 North Canon Drive Residence Is Worth Every Penny of Its $45 Million Price Tag Lotus Cars/FacebookFor all but a brief period early in the company’s history, Lotus Cars has always been on the brink of financial ruin. Despite the automaker’s rich motorsport history (including seven Formula One wins) and long list of brilliant road cars (like the Lotus Seven, Elan, and Elise, to name a few), scandal and missteps always seem to plague Lotus’ health.Today, Lotus Cars is hardly a blip on the automotive industry radar. In Europe, where the brand sells three models — Evora 400, Evora Sport 410, and 3-Eleven — Lotus found buyers for just 783 vehicles last year. In America, the company’s last reported sales year saw just 80 new car deliveries. To put those figures into perspective, Porsche’s 718 Cayman (a direct competitor to the Lotus Evora) sold three times more units in the U.S. in 2017 than Lotus Cars’ global sales the same year.Lotus isn’t riding on the struggle bus, it’s driving it … for now. Last year, China’s Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. (known simply as “Geely”) purchased a 51 percent stake in Lotus Cars, with its Malaysian partner, Etika Automotive, taking the remaining 49 percent. Until now, we’ve been waiting to see what Geely would do with Lotus — especially considering the transformation it has put Volvo through in the past few years (Geely also owns Volvo). Now the pieces are coming together.According to Bloomberg, Geely plans to increase its stake in Lotus and drop about $1.9 billion into the brand. “Geely is fully committed to restoring Lotus into being a leading global luxury brand,” the automaker said in a statement. The company will specifically target Ferrari and Porsche in its plans for performance luxury vehicle domination.That giant chunk of cash will reportedly be directed to building new production facilities and research centers in the United Kingdom. It would also make sense for Geely to expand manufacturing in its home Chinese market. What production cars will this investment yield in the future? If we look to Lotus’ claimed rivals, we can guess Geely is planning a sporty crossover or two, a new convertible (most likely a next-gen Elise), and a four-door sedan. A Breakdown of All the Major Types of Car Racing Kia Telluride Is the Perfect Road Tripper for All Two- and Four-Legged Friendslast_img read more

Our Favorite Thanksgiving Wines to Bring to Dinner

first_img Where to Drink White Wine in the Willamette Valley Get to Know Alto Adige, the Northern Italian Wine Region A Quick and Easy Guide to Popular German Wine Varietals Editors’ Recommendations The Best Whiskey for Whipping Up a Whiskey Sour The Best Whiskey Quotes of All Time Of all of the holidays, Thanksgiving is perhaps the best holiday for trying out a new bottle of wine. With all of the different side dishes that could grace the table in front of you and all of the different palates of your various friends and family, chances are there’s going to be someone to drink whatever it is you bring to dinner (even if it’s just you, sitting in the other room while watching football … we won’t judge).A new bottle of wine, though, also helps to bring people together. Unless you’ve got a sommelier in your family, the wine offers a chance to engage in conversation that doesn’t skew towards religion, politics, or anything else that might make for a sour meal.Below, we’ve picked out some great choices in both the red and white wine categories to suit a variety of flavor profiles. If you’re into cocktails (or shots!), we’ve got you covered too.White WineChâteau LaTour Martillac Pessac-LéognanA blend of Sauvignon Blanc (60 percent) and Sémillon (40 percent), this white Bordeaux has notes of fresh white peaches,  wet hay, and lemon meringue and offers a crisp body (with a little bit of creaminess) that leads in a nice, long finish.Stony Hill Riesling 2017Mineral and floral notes greet you on the nose of this California-made Riesling. These are carried through into the palate but are quickly replaced by a mix of sweet and savory notes, including lemon curd. Overall, the wine is crisp and clean and pairs well with a variety of dishes.Brian Carter Cellars OrianaCrisp and acidic, you will find ample amounts of apple, apricot, and honey-soaked pear, each of which lingers on the palate. A slight hint of licorice flavor adds complexity to the wine and helps it complement many different dishes.Cooper & Thief Sauvignon BlancVery rich in character, this Sauvignon Blanc not only expresses the aroma of citrus you would expect in the wine but also spice characteristics due to the fact that it spends three months aging in Casa Noble añejo tequila barrels. Heavy vanilla notes are abundant.SIMI Winery Reserve Russian River Chardonnay 2015Rich and mineraly, this Chardonnay expresses large amounts of freshly toasted bread, lemon, stone fruits such as peaches, and even some freshly-grated nutmeg. With some savory notes in the body of the wine, this wine will pair perfectly with whatever your main course is.Gundlach Bundschu Gewürtztraminer 2017Not just a mouthful to say, this dry Gewürtztraminer from the Sonoma coast is made from a mix of 10-year-old and 44-year-old vines. Bright and acidic, you’ll find jasmine blossoms and lychee mixing with Asian pear and pickled ginger flavors. Citrus flavors carry through the palate into the dry, medium-length finish.Red WineYoungberg Hill Jordan Pinot Noir 2014Made from 28-year-old vines, this is a full-bodied Pinot Noir from Oregon that perfectly complements any red meat dishes you might be serving. Earthy on the nose with oak notes following, you’ll find black tea, red currant, and plum on the palate. Fruit tannins carry you through for a long finish.Bonterra Grenache 2015Created using biodynamic grapes, this Grenache has a mix of sweet and savory flavors, from black cherries (which is fitting considering the vineyard sits on a former cherry tree farm) to rosemary, sage, and black pepper. The tannins are balanced and lead into a lingering finish.Légende Médoc 2016A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (60 percent) and Merlot (40 percent), is the result of extreme precision from the vineyard and winemaking teams. Fruity, silky and full-bodied, the wine present a nice rounded character with a spicy finish that caters to lovers of both Cabernet and Merlot.Gnarly Dudes Shiraz 2017Redolent of both black cherries and blackberries, the body of this New Zealand is a fairly full-bodied wine with plenty of berries across the palate. These mix with balanced tannins and lead into a finish where you’ll get dark chocolate and red licorice flavors.Mayacamas 2014 Cabernet SauvignonWhile this wine could (and probably should) benefit from some time in the bottle, there is nothing wrong with popping it open ASAP. You’ll find loads of red berry flavors mixing with floral notes, some orange peel, and a little bit of chalky minerality through the nose, palate, and finish.No Fine Print Red BlendMade by the managers of Chance the Rapper and Skrillex (Pat Corcoran and Tim Smith, respectively) in collaboration with sommelier Ryan Arnold, this wine is a blend of Atlas Peak Syrah and Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir. You’ll find a great amount of depth and bright cranberry notes that make it both intriguing and crushable.last_img read more

5 Things to do With a Used Barrel When the Booze is Gone

first_img Meet Phylloxera, One of Wine’s Most Dangerous Pests Editors’ Recommendations The World’s 12 Most Grueling and Insane Endurance Races Baukol’s BarrelsBaukol’s Barrels makes the obtaining of a whiskey barrel bar easy. Prices start at $375.Stave TraysYou’ve probably encountered these by way of a sampling tray at any number of craft breweries. The stave tray is popular for a reason – it’s eye-catching. You’ll likely need to carve in some grooves if the tray’s destiny is holding glassware, on account of the arched shape. You can easily find a stave tray, such as this one, on Amazon or other online retailers. Flatter portions of the barrel make great sushi plates as well. ChairsA nice bench or Adirondack-style chair is a great way to reimagine a barrel. The stain from the whisky or wine that inhabited the bottle will add style and the end result is surprisingly comfortable. Stain to your liking and if the furniture is going outdoors, apply some teak oil beforehand.RAW Woodworks/FacebookOregon outfit RAW Woodworks has some good options you can muse on for inspiration. The natural curves of the staves are practically ergonomic – at least in a barebones kind of way – providing great contours for both the armrests and seats of the chairs.Rain BarrelBarrels make supremely attractive rain or stormwater captures. All you really need is to install a spigot at the base and a hose on top running from your main gutter. This news clip offers a few decent visuals to work with. Because older barrels are often leakers, test to make sure it’s watertight beforehand. Minor leaks can be fixed with wax or by hammering in toothpicks. Larger leaks will require some extra work – either through steaming or banging on the hoops. The former requires several fills of hot water to expand the wood and seal things up. The latter involves hammering the hoops, or metal rings, down the barrel so as to tighten their grip on the staves. Craft brewery Crux has a nice briefing on this sort of thing. You can also simply buy one from a company such as Rain Barrels and More. A lot can be done with a retired whiskey or wine barrel above and beyond simply throwing it in the yard and calling it a “rustic lawn ornament.” The hoops, staves, and heads can be deconstructed and reconstructed in imaginative ways to create attractive furniture, art, and utilitarian knickknacks. Barrels themselves are surprisingly easy to obtain. They can be purchased online (such as through Kelvin Cooperage) or bought straight from the source, should you live near wine country or a distillery trail of some kind. Next time you’re out and about imbibing, ask a booze-maker if they have any barrels they’re trying to offload. You may just land a great idea and a fun project.As Is (Just Clean It First)With a little TLC, a barrel can just be itself and a woodsy addition to your deck or patio. Just be sure to weatherproof it properly with an application that won’t be hard on the wood. Your local hardware store should be able to point you in the right direction. Joe Williams works extensively with barrels as winemaker and owner of D’Anu Wines in the Willamette Valley. He spent several years reworking barrels to sell to area wineries and tasting rooms, operating out of his home workshop. “The beautiful thing about barrel wood is that every barrel is different, from the cooper to its life in the cellar,” Williams says. He’s made wedding signs, clocks, and chalkboards with barrel heads and repurposes the staves as candleholders.In terms of breaking the thing down, he recommends a flathead screwdriver to loosen the hoops nails and pliers with a rounded head to pull out nails. A leather mallet is great for removing the staves as it doesn’t mar the wood.Here are a few worthy uses for your newfound vessel:BarThe barrel was built for booze so it might as well hold on to its main purpose in life. A barrel sitting on its head comes up to about the waist, making it a nice natural height for entertaining. Keep at least the top barrel head on as a tabletop, on which you can mix or pour a drink. Remove staves to create cubbies of sorts on the interior (great for storing bottles or glassware) and utilize the hoops as racks for your favorite bar towel. center_img Kicking It With Timber Joey of the Portland Timbers Soccer Team Dictador 2 Masters Takes Luxury Rum to a New Level A Quick and Easy Guide to Popular German Wine Varietalslast_img read more

Refurbished Lecture Theatre Opens at JCF Training Academy

first_img The JCF now has the capacity to deliver mass lectures in a more comfortable surrounding utilizing modern technology. Story Highlights The facility now has the capacity to seat 144 persons and boasts state-of-the-art audio visual equipment. The project was undertaken through funding from the European Union and the United States Embassy. The training capacity of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) has been strengthened with the refurbishing of the lecture theatre at the Twickeham Park Academy in St. Catherine.The facility, which was re-opened earlier this week, now has the capacity to seat 144 persons and boasts state-of-the-art audio visual equipment. The project was undertaken through funding from the European Union and the United States Embassy.Speaking with JIS News, Superintendent of Police attached to the training branch of the JCF, Anthony Morris, said that with the upgrading, the JCF now has the capacity to deliver mass lectures in a more comfortable surrounding utilizing modern technology.He said that the JCF is re-developing its training school, and the refurbished lecture theatre “is one of several projects being executed to align the training school to that of a modern, first class complex that will attract both local and regional partners.”The refurbishing work was carried out under the EU’s $3.7 billion Budget Support Security Sector Reform Programme (SSRP). Of the amount, $242 million has been earmarked for the upgrading of Twickenham Park.The training school also received audio-visual equipment and air conditioning units from the International Narcotics Law Enforcement section of the US Embassy.Superintendent Morris told JIS News that the training school and by extension the JCF, is aware of the importance of technology.“We use technology extensively, especially in training, and we hope that in the future most, if not all the training deliveries are done with the use of technology. An eLearning facility is to be provided by the EU and with this, we will be able to provide more training opportunities for members of the JCF utilizing technology. As a modern police organisation, we have to keep up with what is taking place globally,” he stated.“We expect that with the continued support from the EU we will, over the next three years, realize the goal of being a first class institution of choice for law enforcement training in the region,” Superintendent Morris highlighted.Chargé d’Affaires of the Delegation of the EU, Jesús Orús Báguena, who attended the ceremony, said that the EU stands by its commitment to support the Government of Jamaica in its efforts to reduce crime and restore order in the society.He said the organisation also commits funding to social intervention programmes in vulnerable communities, providing multi-faceted support to Jamaica’s crime reduction efforts.The EU is also in the process of approving a €12.6 million programme for the security sector, which will focus on the fight against organised crime and corruption. The programme will also provide additional funding for Twickenham Park through capacity building, training, rehabilitation and equipping of classrooms and dormitories.last_img read more

Former Chief Justice Welcomes Hon. Bryan Sykes’ Appointment

first_img Retired Chief Justice, Hon. Zaila McCalla, has welcomed the appointment of her successor, Hon. Justice Bryan Sykes.Mr. Sykes was sworn in by the Governor General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen, during a brief ceremony at King’s House on Thursday (March 1).“I take pleasure in offering my heartiest congratulations to Chief Justice Sykes. It hardly needs to be repeated that he is a judge of unquestionable integrity and ability and is eminently qualified to be confirmed as Chief Justice of Jamaica,” Mrs. McCalla said.She noted that Mr. Sykes has vast experience in the court system where he commenced his career as a temporary clerk of courts. She said he rose to the positon of Senior Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions, and was subsequently appointed as a Puisne Judge in 2005.Mrs. McCalla said up to January 2018, prior to being appointed to act as Chief Justice on February 1, Mr. Sykes served the Supreme Court where he was assigned to the Commercial Division, which he served with distinction.She pointed out that that Division was established consequent on the hierarchy of the judiciary, including her predecessor, Chief Justice Lensley Wolfe, recognising the need to offer a high level of service to commercial customers, while “bearing in mind that investors and potential investors needed the assurance of an expeditious service”.“During my tenure, I took note of international surveys, such as the Doing Business Index, and the complement of judges of that Division was increased from one to three. I am very pleased to say that the judges assigned to that Division, past and present, including Hon. Chief Justice Sykes, have given excellent service, at times exceeding expectations,” she added.Additionally, Mrs. McCalla said Mr. Sykes has a track record of excellence, not only in the courts but other institutions.“His background of distinctive service at the Norman Manley Law School and assistance with judicial education in Jamaica and overseas make him highly qualified to do so,” she said.Against this background, Mrs. McCalla said she is confident that Mr. Sykes will continue the transformation of Jamaica’s courts and justice systems, and build on the initiatives his predecessors started.“Recent statements attributed to Chief Justice Sykes are an indication that he is resolved to continue to pursue the Criminal Case Management Initiative, which is being implemented in all our courts. Much progress has already been made with digitisation of the records of our courts. The Case Information Statistical System (CISS) has already been implemented in all our Parish Courts, and, indeed, the first Comprehensive Annual Statistical Report for that court, has been published,” she outlined.The former Chief Justice further indicated that digitisation of the Supreme Court’s records is in progress and that regular reports on the courts’ performance have also been published.“Chief Justice Sykes has already indicated his intention to maximise these efforts. (Sir) I do hope the digital recording of evidence in all our courts will become a reality during your tenure,” she said. Mrs. McCalla said up to January 2018, prior to being appointed to act as Chief Justice on February 1, Mr. Sykes served the Supreme Court where he was assigned to the Commercial Division, which he served with distinction. Story Highlights Retired Chief Justice, Hon. Zaila McCalla, has welcomed the appointment of her successor, Hon. Justice Bryan Sykes. “I take pleasure in offering my heartiest congratulations to Chief Justice Sykes. It hardly needs to be repeated that he is a judge of unquestionable integrity and ability and is eminently qualified to be confirmed as Chief Justice of Jamaica,” Mrs. McCalla said.last_img read more

CMU Certifies Three Residents of Homestead in Photovoltaic Systems Maintenance

first_imgThe Caribbean Maritime University (CMU) has certified three residents of Homestead in South Central St. Catherine in solar photovoltaic systems maintenance.They are: Delroy Wilson, Jermaine Reid and Tarik Gordon, who were presented with their certificates during Wednesday’s (March 28) commissioning of the Owen Palmer Cyber Centre in Homestead.All three are now able to contribute to maintaining the $9 million facility, the latest community access point (CAP) to be established by the Universal Service Fund (USF), which has been outfitted with, among other things, 12.5 kilowatt solar panels to make its operations more efficient and cost effective.The CAP, which is located at the Homestead Community Centre, is also equipped with desktop computers, projectors, screens, multifunction printers and routers along with air conditioning units.Science, Energy and Technology Minister and Member of Parliament, Dr. the Hon. Andrew Wheatley, in his address, said young people are being trained in the maintenance of solar photovoltaic systems attached to CAP sites to ensure the facilities’ longevity.He indicated that the training is designed to make the beneficiaries more employable.Dr. Wheatley also advised that the Government is embarking on a number of programmes to train persons of all ages in information and communications technology (ICT).This engagement, coupled with the establishment of the CAPs, is part of the Government’s commitment to transform Jamaica into a knowledge-based society.Meanwhile, Dr. Wheatley urged residents of Homestead to ensure they maintain the CAP, which is named in honour of the late USF Director, Owen Palmer, emphasising that “when you come to use the facility, do not dishonour it… use (it) for productive work”.The USF’s Chief Executive Officer, Suzette Buchanan, told JIS News that the entity is continuing work to establish more community access points.“As long as there is a need, the application is made and there is suitable leadership (and) a secured location, we (will) continue to approve them,” she said.Ms. Buchanan indicated that, to date, the USF has established approximately 280 CAPs islandwide, noting that residents in communities where these are in operation are appreciative of the provisions.last_img read more

JA Looking to Have Port Royal and Cockpit Country Inscribed to UNESCO World Heritage List

first_img Ms Grange made the remarks during a speech read by State Minister in the Ministry, Hon. Alando Terrelonge, at a ceremony to mark World Heritage Day held at the Edward Seaga Library located at the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts in Kingston on April 18. Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, says nomination dossiers are being prepared for two more of the country’s heritage sites to be inscribed to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage List.She said these sites include Port Royal and the Cockpit Country.Ms Grange made the remarks during a speech read by State Minister in the Ministry, Hon. Alando Terrelonge, at a ceremony to mark World Heritage Day held at the Edward Seaga Library located at the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts in Kingston on April 18.“In Jamaica, we have designated many heritage sites because of their importance to the country as a whole, but we believe that many of them also have outstanding universal value and are, therefore, worthy of inscription to the UNESCO list of International World Heritage Sites,” she said.Jamaica’s renowned Blue and John Crow Mountains was inscribed to UNESCO’s World Heritage List on July 3, 2015.The inscription represents the first World Heritage Site for Jamaica and the first mixed (cultural and natural) site for the Caribbean subregion. It is one of only 32 mixed sites.Ms Grange noted that as impressive as natural or manmade areas or structures might be, what really makes them have value are the connections that they have to people’s lives.“We are protecting our history, our culture, our legacy, things that are intangible [and] purely Jamaican,” she said.In the meantime, Ms Grange stated that World Heritage Day seeks to raise awareness about the importance of protecting and preserving various sites especially those that have achieved World Heritage Site status.“These sites are important to us here in Jamaica because of the significance they have in promoting our culture and the beauty of our island home,” she said.Ms. Grange encouraged Jamaicans to preserve and protect tangible representations and aspects of the country’s diverse culture and history.“Let us, therefore, impact the way we are remembered, the way we pave the future for the upcoming generations, let us, in fact, understand that we are painters of this the great masterpiece that is… our culture and our rich heritage,” she said.Principal, Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts, Dr. Nicholeen DeGrasse-Johnson said the college will continue to support the efforts of the Ministry in preserving the country’s heritage.The function was organised by the College in collaboration with the Ministry through its agency, the Institute of Jamaica. Story Highlights “In Jamaica, we have designated many heritage sites because of their importance to the country as a whole, but we believe that many of them also have outstanding universal value and are, therefore, worthy of inscription to the UNESCO list of International World Heritage Sites,” she said. Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, says nomination dossiers are being prepared for two more of the country’s heritage sites to be inscribed to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage List.last_img read more

Hurricane Specialists Arrive April 26

first_imgStory Highlights The tour is part of a Caribbean Hurricane Awareness Tour (CHAT) by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) aimed at improving the preparedness and resilience of communities within the Caribbean to tropical storms and hurricanes. A team of United States (US)-based meteorologists and hurricane specialists is expected in Jamaica on Friday, April 27, as part of a public education and outreach campaign to boost awareness about tropical storms and hurricanes and to encourage preparedness. Director of the Meteorological Service of Jamaica, Evan Thompson, told JIS News that the tour will be beneficial to stakeholders in the local sector as well as the general public. A team of United States (US)-based meteorologists and hurricane specialists is expected in Jamaica on Friday, April 27, as part of a public education and outreach campaign to boost awareness about tropical storms and hurricanes and to encourage preparedness.The tour is part of a Caribbean Hurricane Awareness Tour (CHAT) by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) aimed at improving the preparedness and resilience of communities within the Caribbean to tropical storms and hurricanes.The CHAT will make its stop at the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, St. James.Director of the Meteorological Service of Jamaica, Evan Thompson, told JIS News that the tour will be beneficial to stakeholders in the local sector as well as the general public.“What we want to promote is preparedness, to let people recognise what is happening in the hurricane season in relation to how vulnerable Jamaica is. This will give persons the opportunity to ask questions, so they can find out about past seasons and assess the changes taking place as we go forward. Having this type of interaction with the specialists will lead to more public awareness and understanding,” he said.The group will host a press conference, after which the US hurricane specialists and US military air crew will facilitate access by students, media, community groups and other members of the public aboard their Air Force Reserve Command WC-130J ‘Hurricane Hunter’.During hurricanes, US military air crews fly these types of aircraft directly into the core of tropical cyclones to gather data that are critical for forecasting a hurricane’s intensity and direction.“So, CHAT is really to draw public attention and education on the tropical cyclones that could impact them during the hurricane season and to spread the message of preparedness and whatever can be done in terms of mitigation,” Mr. Thompson said.Jamaica is the only English-speaking country on the 2018 staging of the CHAT. The other countries to be visited are Mexico, Panama and Puerto Rico.The tour is being facilitated by the Meteorological Service of Jamaica, in collaboration with MBJ Airports Ltd, operators of Sangster International Airport, which is celebrating its 15th anniversary.The last CHAT to Jamaica was in 2001 and was hosted at the Norman Manley International Airport (NMIA) in Kingston.last_img read more

PM Affirms Jamaica’s Commitment to CARICOM

first_img “Jamaica’s chairmanship will have a specific focus and intention, mindful of the rapidly evolving dynamics of our global world, and the need for practical effective responses to the changing realities,” he said. Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, is affirming Jamaica’s commitment to the principle objectives of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). Story Highlights This, he said, includes the expansion of trade and investment opportunities for its members; the promotion of foreign policy coordination; and structured, functional cooperation. Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, is affirming Jamaica’s commitment to the principal objectives of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).This, he said, includes the expansion of trade and investment opportunities for its members; the promotion of foreign policy coordination; and structured, functional cooperation.“Jamaica’s chairmanship will have a specific focus and intention, mindful of the rapidly evolving dynamics of our global world, and the need for practical effective responses to the changing realities,” he said.The Prime Minister was addressing the opening ceremony of the 39th Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of CARICOM on Wednesday (July 4) at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in St. James.Mr. Holness, who assumed Chairmanship of the Conference on July 1, said his work will be undergirded by the theme ‘Building Stronger, Resilient and Secure Partnerships for Prosperity’.“With this in mind, we will call upon all member States to summon the necessary political will and determination to ensure that all programmes and initiatives are strategically focused and geared towards meeting an ambitious process of reform,” he said.In his remarks, CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque, welcomed the chairmanship of Prime Minister Holness, noting that “I have no doubt that under his guidance, the interest of our region will be further advanced”.Ambassador LaRocque also commented that the venue of the meeting was significant, as Montego Bay has a rich history in the integration movement of the community.“The opportunity is with us once again to have a historic moment in Montego Bay with respect to CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME),” he said.Outgoing CARICOM Chairman, President Jovenel Moïse, of Haiti; and the Conference’s newest member, the Prime Minister of Barbados, Hon. Mia Mottley, also addressed the opening ceremony.Prime Ministers Dr. the Hon Keith Mitchell of Grenada and Hon. Gaston Browne of Antigua and Barbuda, who were re-elected to office this year, also gave remarks.The Meeting of the CARICOM Heads is being held from July 4-6. Among the key agenda items are crime and violence, disaster management and climate change, and the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME).The Conference of Heads of Government, which consists of the Heads of Government of the Member States, is the supreme organ of the Caribbean Community and determines and provides its policy direction.Jamaica’s hosting of the conference is in keeping with the regular system of rotation within CARICOM.  Prime Minister Holness’ tenure will last until December 31, 2018.The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) has 15 Member States – Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Guyana, Grenada, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago, and five Associate Members – Anguilla, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, and the Turks and Caicos Islands.last_img read more

Crowley and Seaboard Enter New Vessel Sharing Agreement

first_imgzoom Crowley Maritime Corporation’s liner services group and Seaboard Marine Ltd. today announced a new vessel sharing agreement that will provide customers of both companies with reliable, weekly service on larger ships between South Fla., Costa Rica and Panama.By sharing vessel space, Crowley and Seaboard will increase total capacity in the trade by using two 2,500-TEU-capacity vessels, resulting in a continued high level of service, a more efficient operation and reduced carbon emissions in the trade lane. When the service commences in late November, each ship will call weekly at Crowley’s Port Everglades, Fla., terminal and Seaboard’s Port Miami terminal before transiting to Puerto Limon, Costa Rica, and Colon and Manzanillo, Panama. Concurrent with the change, Seaboard will be moving all of its vessels that serve Panama to Manzanillo International Terminals.“Our cooperation in this trade lane will allow us to continue to provide exceptional service to our customers while remaining competitive in the ever-changing market,” said Steve Collar, Crowley senior vice president and general manager, Latin America services. “We are particularly pleased that our combined service will provide the fastest transits in the market to and from Costa Rica.”“This arrangement permits us to gain efficiencies while enhancing service to customers as we are actually adding capacity,” said Edward Gonzalez, Seaboard president and CEO. “Though not the primary reason for rationalizing our services, we are pleased that we can reduce our carbon footprint by doing so.”A vessel will load in Miami and Port Everglades weekly for a Friday departure and then call in Puerto Limon on Tuesdays, Manzanillo on Wednesdays, and Colon on Thursdays before departing north on Saturdays from Puerto Limon. Each carrier will continue to provide its full complement of equipment types used in its Central America service.All other Crowley and Seaboard services will remain unchanged.Crowley, October 30, 2013last_img read more

New Contract for Jack-Up Rig ‘Maersk Guardian’

first_imgzoom Maersk Drilling has signed a contract with Premier Oil Norge AS for the jack-up Maersk Guardian for a one well drilling operation, the Myrhauk exploration well, in the Norwegian North Sea.The duration of the contract is approximately 62 days. The contract will commence in direct continuation of the present Lundin Norway AS contract during Q3 2014.“Norway is a focus area for Maersk Drilling, which is also why we are very pleased that Premier Oil Norge has chosen us for the Myrhauk exploration well. This is the first time, we enter into an agreement with Premier Oil in Norway, and we look forward to a hopefully long and valuable relationship,” says Claus V. Hemmingsen, CEO of Maersk Drilling and member of the Executive Board of the A.P. Moller-Maersk Group.Maersk Drilling is the market leader in the Norwegian jack-up market currently owning and operating six of the nine jack-up rigs present in the region.“Significant resources remain in Norway, and we see oil and gas companies increasing their business activity in the Norwegian market. There is a continued strong growth potential in the market and we will continue to evaluate the opportunities for additional growth,” says Claus V. Hemmingsen, CEO of Maersk Drilling.Maersk Drilling has four XL Enhanced (CJ-70) jack-ups under construction that will enter the Norwegian market between 2014 and 2016 thereby increasing Maersk Drilling’s presence in Norway. The four rigs have all secured long term contracts. The XL Enhanced rigs are designed to operate in the harsh environment found in the North Sea and comply with all rules and regulations in the strictly regulated Norwegian sector.Maersk Drilling, December 23, 2013last_img read more

Clean Marine to Supply Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems for …

first_imgClean Marine, January 17, 2014; Image: Stolt Tankers 此页面无法正确加载 Google 地图。您是否拥有此网站?确定 My location Print  Close zoom Clean Marine has been selected by Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding in China to supply exhaust gas cleaning systems (EGCS) for two 38,000 dwt. Chemical Tankers being built for Stolt Tankers and NYK Stolt Tankers.Photo courtesy Stolt TankersThe two vessels are built in a series of six sister ships, where the remaining four vessels will be designed with the flexibility to add an EGCS at a later stage. The order will enable these new vessels to comply with sulphur emissions legislation without switching to more expensive fuels. Nils Høy-Petersen, CEO in Clean Marine, states that the contract reflects the growing demand for Clean Marine’s unique and competitive multi-stream EGCS solution. “We are very pleased to experience a breakthrough also in the Chinese shipbuilding market and to be selected by Hudong-Zhonghua, a yard which during its 70 years history has delivered over 3,000 quality ships. We also look forward to delivering a cost-effective solution to help Stolt Tankers comply with the new emissions regulations which comes into force from 2015”, he says.Stolt Tankers operates globally and has one of the world’s largest and most sophisticated fleet of chemical tankers. The Stolt Tankers fleet consists of more than 150 ships and barges. Stolt Tankers have a strict focus on safety and environmental protection, and the EGCS from Clean Marine will ensure that the new vessels operate well within all applicable local and international regulatory requirements.Clean Marine has developed an EGCS based on the Advanced Vortex Chamber technology that provides unique cleaning efficiency. The system’s integrated fan and gas recirculation technology allows the one EGCS unit to simultaneously serve several combustion units. The system supplied to Stolt Tankers is a hybrid system that allows the vessel to operate seamlessly in all types of water (including low alkaline and saline water) without loss of efficiency. Furthermore, the Clean Marine EGCS meets the current pH limit for washwater discharge in Europe and USA with good margin.“For vessels operating in European or US waters, inside the emission control areas (ECAs), a maximum sulphur limit of 0.1 percent will apply from January 2015,” says Høy-Petersen. “The Clean Marine system supplied to Stolt Tankers will clean both sulphur oxides (SOx) and particulate matter emissions from one main engine, three auxiliary engines, and three boilers. In total, a single Clean Marine EGCS unit will manage seven exhaust sources and will be designed to clean 140,000 kg exhaust per hour.” Installation of the EGCS unit is scheduled to take place during 2015.last_img read more

DP World’s TRP Uses Navis N4 Terminal Operating System

first_img My location Print  Close zoom Navis, the global technology standard for managing the movement of cargo through terminals, yesterday announced that DP World’s Terminales Rio de la Plata (TRP), the largest container facility in Argentina, successfully went live on the Navis N4 terminal operating system (TOS).Following nearly 20 years of continued partnership with Navis, TRP upgraded to N4 to drive critical improvements in operational performance and customer service excellence.A Navis SPARCS and Express customer since 1994, Buenos Aires-based Terminales Rio de la Plata handles containers from deep-sea vessels from Europe, Asia and North America, as well as feeders vessels to both the East and West coasts of South America and barges upriver to Rosario.The facility made the strategic investment in N4 to modernize their systems and improve operational performance with enhanced reporting functionality and centralized yard, gate, rail and inspections events. With N4, TRP is improving the overall service that is delivered to their customers.Following a collaborative implementation process with Navis and the terminal’s regional team, TRP successfully went live with N4 on October 12, 2013. Since that time, N4 has delivered several benefits including: better shipside and rail performance, improved ease of reporting, decreased customization needs, productivity gains for IT staff, streamlined billing functionality and event monitoring, and remote access for terminal management.“In order to take our operations to the next level and position our terminal for future success, we needed a world-class technology partner by our side. Since 1994, that company continues to be Navis,” said Ricardo Alvarez, operations director for Terminales Rio de la Plata. “In just the few weeks since the official go-live, we’re pleased with the improvements offered by the new platform and are confident that this strategic investment will yield many more for our customers in the coming months.”“TRP’s migration from SPARCS Express to N4 reinforces the importance of modernizing systems to keep up with the growing productivity pressures that terminals are currently experiencing,” said Martin Bardi, Senior Director, Americas, for Navis. “Our historic knowledge about the facility was also advantageous, as we were able to minimize disruptions during the integration and drive improvements almost immediately. We are proud to continue to serve as TRP’s TOS platform of choice, and look forward to our continued partnership for the next 20 years.”N4 is Navis’ latest generation TOS, allowing customers the flexibility and scalability needed to run their operations – from a single terminal to multiple terminals spanning numerous geographic locations managed from one central location. 此页面无法正确加载 Google 地图。您是否拥有此网站?确定 Navis, February 25, 2014last_img read more

Transas Marine Reveals New Liquid Cargo Handling Simulator

first_img此页面无法正确加载 Google 地图。您是否拥有此网站?确定 zoom Transas Marine has launched its new liquid cargo handling simulator LCHS 5000 TechSim LNG which is the first in the market to boast ship-to-ship transfer functionality.The new Transas LCHS 5000 TechSim product line includes simulators for LNG tanker, LNG terminal and LPG carrier.Ship-to-ship transfer is a complex operation which requires adequate training to minimise the risks of damage to personnel, environment and assets. Transas LCHS 5000 allows for a complete resource management training involving crews of both mother and daughter vessels.The new simulator will enable trainers to provide highly realistic, in-depth training using the high-end simulation technology ingerent within LCHS 5000 TechSim. This includes vessel team management exercises as well as interaction with terminal operations staff.The LNG vessel and LNG terminal simulator models were developed in a close collaboration with the Sczecin Maritime Academy, Poland. Simulated models have been designed to reflect real installations which are currently under-construction at the Swinoujscie LNG terminal in Poland.To further complement the liquid gas vessel model range, an LPG vessel model was developed by Transas and validated by LPG operators. My location Transas, March 20, 2014 Print  Closelast_img read more

Update: Radioactive Waste Ship Towed to Safety

first_imgzoom M/V ParidaThe Denmark-registered Parida, laden with radioactive concrete waste, which had lost power and was adrift south east of Wick, Scotland, is currently anchored close to the entrance of the Cromarty Firth, The Inverness Courier reports.Parida was towed to the Cromarty Firth by the Pacific Champion.Strong currents were carrying the drifting vessel towards the Beatrice Alpha oil platform, leading to the helicopter evacuation of 52 people working on the platform at the time as a precautionary measure.The loss of power was caused by the fire that broke out in one of the vessel’s funnels while it was carrying the radioactive cargo from Scrabster to Antwerp.The fire had been put down, and no injuries have been reported so far.Bob Buskie, chief executive for the Port of Cromarty Firth, said: “The cargo vessel Parida will be anchored safely within the Port limits, outwith the North and South Sutors of the Cromarty Firth, whilst it undertakes necessary repairs.The Port of Cromarty Firth is working closely with the Maritime Coastguard Agency throughout the process.” Print  Close My location World Maritime News Staff, October 08, 2014; Image: Combi-Lift 此页面无法正确加载 Google 地图。您是否拥有此网站?确定last_img read more

Antwerp Bunkers First LNG-Fueled Seagoing Ship

first_imgzoom The 2,700 cbm coastal tanker Sefarina on Monday became the first seagoing ship to be bunkered with liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the port of Antwerp, Belgium.LNG bunkering has been possible in Antwerp for some time, but so far it has been used only for barges, with the LNG being supplied by trucks.The recent truck-to-ship bunkering of the Sefarina now counts as a test case for the safety procedures that will apply to bunkering of seagoing ships.Antwerp Port Authority has recently issued a tender for construction and operation of an LNG bunkering and filling station under a concession on its quay 528.The aim is for barges to be able to bunker with LNG in the port of Antwerp at a permanent facility by the beginning of 2019 at the latest.Interested parties have until October 5 to submit their project proposals. The Port Authority does not exclude the possibility of transhipment of LNG from feeder ships, transhipment of LNG by trucks and LNG/CNG filling facilities for road users also being developed on the site. It is also possible for other fuels to be stored or made available on the site.last_img read more

Maersk Saigon Runs Aground at Brazilian Port

first_imgThe 108,180 DWT containership Maersk Saigon, owned by the world’s largest container shipping company Maersk Line, ran aground at Port of Santos access channel in Brazil after departing the port on Monday.“On 7 December 2015 at 2.17 pm local time Maersk Saigon was grounded during her departure manoeuvre at the BTP Terminal in Santos, Brazil.“Maersk Saigon was departing towards Port Elizabeth, South Africa, (on the ASAS service). She is a Maersk Line operated time charter vessel managed by E.R. Schiffahrt,” Maersk Line told World Maritime News in an emailed statement.The vessel hit a sandy shallow due to a strong current in the navigation channel.Maersk Line added that the vessel’s crew is safe and no one was injured.The 8,402 TEU ship was refloated at 10.30 pm local time on Monday and is currently safely anchored while awaiting further inspection to assess any potential structural damages.The local authorities sent two tugs to help with refloating the ship.There were no reports of pollution in the area.The authorities are investigating the circumstances that lead to the grounding.World Maritime News Stafflast_img read more

NAPA ChartWorld Partner Up on AIDriven Voyage Optimization

first_imgzoomImage Courtesy: NAPA/Chartworld NAPA, a maritime software, services and data analysis provider, and ChartWorld, a digital chart agent, have joined forces in an effort to provide artificial intelligence-driven voyage planning and optimization.As informed, the solution includes modules for evaluating the operational efficiency of past voyages and then using this data to optimize the efficiency of future transits where there are similar variables and trends.Past voyages are automatically evaluated via datasets collected from ChartWorld’s route network to find improved routes the vessel could have taken.These voyages are also automatically analysed by NAPA’s algorithms for operational efficiency, taking into account wave conditions, weather, and other factors that affect the voyage.“In today’s era of constant regulatory change and cost volatility, vessel efficiency and safety are more important than ever,” Oliver Schwarz, ChartWorld’s Business Development Director, commented.“With the adoption of ECDIS, voyage planning has become increasingly complex. Best-practice risk management requires ‘four eyes’ on voyage planning, with the master verifying the second mate’s plans. Onshore personnel can use the MyRouteAppraisal (MyRA) solution to pre-check onboard navigation planning for additional certainty, as well as comparing different route alternatives for the same voyage,” he continued.Risto Kariranta, Director of Services, Shipping Solutions at NAPA, explained that the use of AI-based algorithms enables operators to reduce the cost of each voyage, execute it more safely and with less work for the crew onboard.Under this partnership, ChartWorld has signed a re-seller agreement with NAPA allowing for a range of NAPA services to be provided as an integral part of ChartWorld’s MyRouteAppraisal (MyRA) platform.MyRA, combined with NAPA’s vessel performance enhancements, provides charterers, ship operators, and onboard personnel with a range of tools related to voyage planning. Charterers, for example, will be able to evaluate the cost of voyages for different destinations with different schedules. They also can share these plans in real-time with ship operators and onboard crew.last_img read more

Provincial State of Emergency Terminated

first_imgThe provincewide state of emergency, which was declared at 8:30 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 19, will end at 9 p.m. today, Sunday,Feb. 22. “Tremendous progress has been made in clearing the recordbreaking snowfall amounts from provincial and municipalroadways,” said Ernest Fage, Minister responsible for theEmergency Measures Organization. “Although there is still alot of snow to be removed, especially in metro areas, a stateof emergency is not required to complete this work.” The minister said public safety is still EMO’s number oneconcern and although most streets and roads have been cleared,all roads are narrower than usual, with some lanes still notopen. Provincial government offices will be open on Monday, Feb. 23. In anticipation of the usual work week traffic, especially inHalifax Regional Municipality (HRM), employers and employeesare urged to reduce the number of vehicles on the road by carpooling and using Metro Transit wherever possible. Residents in HRM are advised to listen to their local mediaoutlets for further road conditions and transit information. -30-last_img read more

The Stories Behind New Elections Nova Scotia Website

first_imgOne person describes the freedom of being allowed to vote as a “momentous experience.” Another became active in school politics because his grandfather used to tell him about the importance of the right to vote. And then there is a 10-year-old who can’t wait for his first trip to the polls. These are just three of the people whose experiences are being highlighted as part of a new Elections Nova Scotia website with the theme: There is a story behind every vote. “Elections are all about people,” said Christine McCulloch, Nova Scotia’s chief electoral officer. “They are about the people who choose to make a difference by coming out to vote, by running for public office, and by getting involved in the election process. We wanted this new website to recognize them all, and, just as importantly, be useful to them all.” The website — www.electionsnovascotia.ns.ca — is also a single source of information for elections and byelections in Nova Scotia. Voters can use an electoral district finder on the site to find their returning officer, local returning office, electoral district, candidates, and the many different ways of voting. When elections are called, voters can also find details about how, where, and when to vote. “Candidates can now access all the information they need right online,” said Ms. McCulloch. “Applications, forms, acts and legislation are all there ready to be downloaded.” Residents of Halifax Citadel, who go to the polls for a byelection on June 27, may find the site especially helpful right now. But other Nova Scotians can also find valuable information, like reports published by the chief electoral officer, links to the registered political parties, MLAs, municipalities, and other electoral jurisdictions. “We wanted to create a site that would give people quick and easy access to all the information they wanted, in a way that was friendly and functional,” said Ms. McCulloch. “We designed it with voters, candidates, election officials, and young voters in mind.” And more changes are planned for future phases. The office hopes to include a system that allows people to register to vote online and to find exactly where their polling stations are located. Future phases will also include development of an education tool kit for teachers and interactive, educational games for children.last_img read more

Youth Recipient Added to Order of Nova Scotia

first_imgAn amendment to the Order of Nova Scotia Act means there can be a sixth recipient each year –- a youth. In the past, the Order of Nova Scotia Advisory Council has chosen a maximum of five recipients each year. The amendment, which was passed in the fall session of the legislature, states that a sixth recipient must be under the age of 26 and have distinguished himself or herself by outstanding contributions to their community or achievement in a chosen field. The deadline for nominations for the 2007 Order of Nova Scotia is Friday, March 16. Nomination forms can be picked up at Access Nova Scotia centres throughout the province. They are also available at Province House, at the offices of all members of the legislative assembly, Nova Scotia members of parliament and senators, as well as municipal offices. For more information contact the Protocol Office at 902-424-4463, e-mail orderofns@gov.ns.ca or see the website at www.gov.ns.ca/prot/order.htm .last_img read more

Interprofessional Cancer Education in Cape Breton District Health Authority

first_imgImproved patient care is at the heart of a project designed to train cancer health professionals to provide cancer education to their peers. Funded by Health Canada, with Cancer Care Nova Scotia as the project lead, Partners for Interprofessional Cancer Education has trained six health professionals from Cape Breton District Health Authority as facilitators. The training provides expertise in interprofessional learning — a greater appreciation of each others’ values, knowledge and abilities; collaborative, patient-centred care and cultural sensitivity and safety for First Nations communities. These facilitators will educate health professionals in their district. Together with 32 other facilitators from across Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, they will reach more than 1,100 community-based health professionals over the next year. “Canada’s government commends Cancer Care Nova Scotia and itspartners for their leadership in this project. By April 2008, more than 1,000 Nova Scotian health professionals will be better trained to help cancer patients,” said Tony Clement, federal Minister of Health. “The introduction of interprofessional education across Nova Scotia will benefit not only the patients who will receive unprecedented treatment and support, but also the teams of professionals who work in cancer care.” “With the expertise and commitment of districts, and the strength of our other partners, we are extending the value and reach of Cancer Care Nova Scotia’s original interprofessional education program, the interprofessional core curriculum,” said Theresa Marie Underhill, chief operating officer, Cancer Care Nova Scotia. “Through this project, we are enhancing it, extending the training of health professionals and providing the necessary supports for them to deliver the interprofessional core curriculum to others.” “Cancer care involves a team approach and this program will helpstrengthen our team,” said Mona Baryluk, director of the Cape Breton Cancer Centre. “Sharing our knowledge and experience with other health-care professionals will give them enhanced skills and a special perspective on cancer care. Our goal is to provide the safest and best possible care to our patients and this education program will make a difference.” Health professionals with an expertise in cancer or palliative care were recruited to participate in the training. Medical and radiation oncologists, palliative care physicians and nurses, social workers, pharmacists, nursing students from St. Francis Xavier University and First Nations representatives working in health were among those trained. “I’ve always been sold on the benefits of a team approach tolearning, so I was excited to have the opportunity to participate in the facilitator training,” said Hugh Toner, a pharmacist with the Cape Breton District Health Authority and one of the 38 health professionals trained as an interprofessional facilitator. “I was very impressed. We learned how to engage learners in discussion and encourage the sharing of different perspectives to enrich the learning. It was very powerful and I’m looking forward to sharing my learning with others. When health professionals learn with, from and about each other, everyone benefits – especially patients.” The Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre, in collaboration with other partners, implemented the first phase of the project, the development of the facilitator training program. First Nations consultants worked with the Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre to ensure cultural safety and sensitivity was woven throughout the training program. The centre also revised the case studies included in Cancer Care Nova Scotia’s interprofessional core curriculum, which facilitators will be delivering. Beginning in April, facilitators will deliver the core curriculumprogram to community based health professionals in Nova Scotia and P.E.I. The curriculum has 10 modules including, pain and symptom management, treatment and side effects. By April 2008, 1,100 health professionals will have a better knowledge in these areas as well as an improved understanding and appreciation of the expertise of their team members and the community resources available to patients and families. The curriculum will also be included in the undergraduate nursing program at St. Francis Xavier University. As part of the project, Cancer Care Nova Scotia will supportfacilitators in developing a community of practice to build the body of knowledge and expertise in interprofessional learning through better interaction with one another. An evaluation, led by Dalhousie Continuing Medical Education, for both facilitators and participants will cover both intended and self-reported changes in practice. Possible ways for evaluating the project from the patient perspective are also being discussed. In addition to Cancer Care Nova Scotia, Partners for Interprofessional Care Education includes: district health authorities, the IWK Health Centre, the Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre, Dalhousie University Continuing Medical Education, Dalhousie University College of Pharmacy, Division of Continuing Pharmacy Education, the Union of NovaScotia Indians, the Confederacy of Mainland Mi’kmaq, St. FrancisXavier School of Nursing, Seniors’ Secretariat and Prince EdwardIsland Department of Health. Cancer Care Nova Scotia is a program of the Department of Health,created to reduce the burden of cancer on individuals, families, and the health-care system through prevention, screening, education and research.last_img read more

Premier Offers Best Wishes To Mr MacDonald

first_imgPremier Darrell Dexter extended best wishes and thanks to former premier Rodney MacDonald today, June 24, after Mr. MacDonald announced he is stepping down as leader of the Progressive Conservative party. “I want to personally thank Mr. MacDonald for his work on behalf of Nova Scotians,” said Premier Dexter. “While we may have disagreed on policy, I have never doubted his commitment to the people of the province. “I also want to acknowledge the former premier for his efforts to bring attention to healthy living and other similar initiatives that helped Nova Scotians live healthier lives.” Premier Dexter also wished Mr. MacDonald continued success in representing the people of Inverness in the House of Assembly.last_img read more

Tenders Called to Complete Digby County Interchange

first_imgA safer intersection on Highway 101 will be the result of the latest road improvement tender called by the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal. The tender calls for the construction and paving of roads and ramps to connect the Hectanooga overpass to Highway 101 at Exit 32. This includes repaving Highway 101 from west of Exit 31 for 11.2 kilometres to Salmon River Bridge, and from Salmon River Bridge west for about one kilometre. It also includes paving the interchange ramps and the new alignment of Hectanooga Road. “Crossing at this exit can be hazardous, especially when fog is coming off the river,” said Bill Estabrooks, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal. “This work will make this exit safer for all drivers.” The tender is being cost-shared with the federal government through several different funding programs. It closes on Thursday, Feb. 25 and the project is scheduled for completion by the end of October. The department’s highways division manages more than 23,000 kilometres of roads in Nova Scotia. It maintains 4,100 bridges and operates seven provincial ferries. Staff provide services from district offices in Bridgewater, Bedford, Truro, and Sydney.last_img read more

Legislation Requires Drivers to Reduce Speed for Emergency Vehicles

first_imgThe province is stepping up efforts to protect police officers, paramedics and other emergency personnel with legislation that comes into effect May 1, limiting drivers’ speed when passing stopped emergency vehicles. Motorists will be required to slow down to 60 kilometres per hour or the posted speed limit if it is less, when passing a stopped emergency vehicle with its lights flashing. Drivers traveling in a lane immediately adjacent to a stopped emergency vehicle must also move into another lane to pass if one is available and it is safe to do so. The law was passed during the fall session of the legislature. It was originally introduced as a private members’ bill by MLA David Wilson, a former paramedic, in the fall 2007 session. “By asking drivers to slow down and move over, we’re taking action to protect our emergency responders,” said Bill Estabrooks, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal. “The law will allow our dedicated emergency workers to do their job without having to worry about personal safety.” The fines, including court costs, range from $340.21 to $2410.21 depending on the speed of the vehicle. Many jurisdictions in Canada and the United States have similar legislation. “I’ve experienced first hand the dangers of working on the side of the road at an emergency scene,” said paramedic Francine Butts. “I urge drivers to remember that this is our work environment and by slowing down and moving over you help us stay safe so others stay alive.” The province is launching a public awareness campaign this month including print, radio, TV and online ads reminding drivers of the new law. For more information on the legislation and to see the ads, visit the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal website at www.gov.ns.ca/tran .last_img read more

Traffic Advisory Kings County

first_imgKINGS COUNTY: Road Closures The following roads are closed because of fallen trees: Motorists should use caution and watch for debris on roads. -30- Highway 1 from south Berwick to Aylesford Hall Road Ward Road Cambridge Road Prospect Road Morristown Road Brooklyn Street West of Blackrock Road and West of Morden Road Parker-Condon Road Loretta Avenue Chase Road last_img

Premier Offers Condolences on Death of Media Pioneer

first_imgPremier Darrell Dexter extended his sympathies to the family, friends and former colleagues of Dave Wright, founding host of ATV’s Live at 5, who passed away today, Feb. 17, after a long battle with cancer. “Dave Wright did so much for the broadcasting community here in Nova Scotia, and throughout Canada,” said Premier Dexter. “He was a fine man and a great television host. This is indeed a sad day for anyone who was fortunate enough to have worked with or known Mr. Wright. “I would like to offer my sincere condolences to his family, friends and former colleagues throughout this difficult time.” Mr. Wright began his broadcasting career in 1950s. He created ATV’s Live at Five in 1982 and hosted the program for four years. He also worked as a consultant for radio stations in Ontario and Quebec.last_img read more

Paying Less Means Paving More OpEd

first_imgFor several weeks, the Nova Scotia Roadbuilders Association has voiced its concerns about the province’s decision to move forward with a mobile asphalt plant and chip sealing crew. Let me be clear. Nova Scotians have been forced to pay far too much for some road work in this province the last number of years. That has to stop. It has to stop because paying more means paving less. The numbers speak for themselves. In certain communities, especially in rural Nova Scotia, there are very few bids and the bids we do receive are high. For example, in areas of the province where there is little competition within the private sector for paving jobs, prices have been at least 10 per cent higher and even as much as 50 per cent higher than in areas where there is more competition. That means that Nova Scotians end up paying higher prices for less work. That isn’t fair and it has to stop. As the Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal, my first priority to the people of this province, especially those living in rural communities, is to get as much road work done in their communities as possible. The purchase of a mobile asphalt plant and chip seal equipment will help make that happen. Residents in Inverness, Shelburne, Queens and Victoria counties deserve to have their roads paved and chip sealed as much as Nova Scotians living in other parts of the province. I am committed to making sure that happens. Because of the decision to purchase the mobile asphalt plant and the chip seal equipment, many hundreds of more kilometres of road work in rural Nova Scotia will now be completed in the next few years. That has tremendous benefits for thousands of rural Nova Scotians. Over the last number of years, hundreds of millions of dollars in road work projects has been awarded to Nova Scotia companies. They have benefitted significantly from federal and provincial stimulus projects. In fact, since 2005, the annual budget for road paving in the province has more than doubled. The road builders in this province will still have access to more than 95 per cent of all road work. They will still be able to operate a successful business in Nova Scotia. I have a lot of respect for the work of our road builders and I want them to know that when they bid for tenders in a fair way, they will be accepted. They will have plenty of opportunity to work on Nova Scotia’s roads this summer. I want all Nova Scotians, especially those living in rural parts of the province to know that the decision to move forward with this project was simply a matter of getting a better bang for our buck. The reality is that more road work in their communities will get done because of the mobile plant and chip seal crew. I made the decision to move forward with this project because it is in the best interests of Nova Scotians. It is a decision that I stand by and it is a decision that will not be reversed. I encourage the road builders and any other concerned stakeholders to contact my office and arrange a meeting with myself and my staff. We will go over the business plan with them page by page so they have a good understanding of the reasons why these initiatives are not only fair to the road builders themselves, but to the thousands of Nova Scotians who will benefit from having more road work done in their communities. Paying less means paving more. -30-last_img read more

Weekly Traffic Advisories

first_img PICTOU COUNTY: Highway 104 Highway 104 from about one kilometre west of French River Bridge east six kilometres to Broadway Bridge will be reduced to one lane for crack filling and micro-surfacing until Wednesday, Aug. 31. Work takes place from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-896-7085 KINGS COUNTY: Hortonville Bridge Hortonville Bridge, about one kilometre east of Exit 10 on Highway 101, will be reduced to one lane for bridge construction until Friday, July 15. Work takes place from sunrise to sunset. Local Area Office: 902-542-6344 GUYSBOROUGH COUNTY: Trunk 16 Trunk 16, from almost four kilometres west of Fox Island Road, east to the Canso town line, will have alternating lane closures for gravelling and repaving until Friday, July 22. Traffic control people and a pilot vehicle will be on site. Work will take place from 6:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-533-2771 HALIFAX REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY: Highway 118 Highway 118, southbound to Portobello Road Overpass, will be reduced to one lane from Monday, July 4, until Monday, Aug. 15, for repairs. Traffic control on site. Local Area Office: 902-424-0054 PICTOU COUNTY: Highway 104 Sections of the eastbound lanes of Highway 104, from the Pictou-Colchester county line, east for about 9.5 kilometres, will be reduced to one lane for paving until Wednesday, Aug. 31. Motorists are advised that there will be a speed zone reduction from 110 km/h to 80km/h when travelling through the two kilometre work zone. Work takes place from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-752-6224 PICTOU COUNTY: Highway 104 Highway 104, from Exit 22 west to Exit 20, about six kilometres will be reduced to one lane for crack filling and micro-surfacing until Wednesday, Aug. 31. Work takes place from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-896-7085 CAPE BRETON REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY: George Street Work on a section of George Street, near the Highway 125 overpass, will take place until Friday, July 22. Traffic control people will be on site. Expect delays caused by trucks leaving and entering traffic stream. Work takes place from sunrise to sunset. Local Area Office: 902-563-2518 RICHMOND COUNTY: Trunk 4 Sections of Trunk 4, west from Lakeshore Drive, will be reduced to one lane from Monday, July 4 until Monday, Oct. 31, for repaving. A pilot vehicle will be onsite. Travel with extra caution. Local Area Office: 902-625-4200 PICTOU COUNTY: Route 245 Route 245, from Smith Road to Brown’s Mill Road, about six kilometres, will be reduced to one lane for patching and repaving until Friday, Sept. 30. Public should expect delays. Traffic control people on site. Work takes place from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-752-6224 COLCHESTER COUNTY: Station Road – Londonderry Station Road, Londonderry will be reduced to one lane for patching and repaving until Wednesday, Aug. 31. Traffic control people will be on site. Work takes place from dawn to dusk. Local Area Office: 902-893-5785 KINGS COUNTY: Bridge Closure Traffic on the Busby McMahon Bridge on Brooklyn Street, near Aylesford, is reduced to one lane until further notice. Traffic lights are in place. Local Area Office: 902-679-4979 COLCHESTER COUNTY: Route 326 Route 326 between Upper River John Road and Mountain Road is reduced to one lane for cold planing, grading, patching and guard rail installation until Sunday, July 31. Work takes place from dawn to dusk. Local Area Office: 902-893-5776 NEW WORK ANNAPOLIS COUNTY: Trunk 8 Trunk 8 from Virginia Road intersection south for three kilometres will be reduced to one lane for road work until Monday, Oct. 31. Traffic control on site. Work takes place from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-825-4151 CAPE BRETON REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY: John Joe Gillis Bridge John Joe Gillis Bridge on Route 216 (Eskasoni Road) between Civic Nos. 435 and 440 will be closed for repairs from Monday, July 4 until Monday, July 11. Detour route on Gillis Lake Road to Trunk 4 to Chapel Road. Local Area Office: 902- 563-2371 PICTOU COUNTY: Trenton Connector The Trenton Connector or Bascule Bridge, between Trenton and Abercrombie Road, will be reduced to one lane for deck and joint repairs until Friday, July 15. Traffic signals on site. Work takes place from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-893-6194 COLCHESTER COUNTY: Highway 102 Traffic on sections of the Halifax-bound lanes of Highway 102 will be reduced to one lane for repaving from north of Stewiacke for four kilometres to Exit 11. Work will take place from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. until Sunday, July 31. Drivers should travel with extra caution in the area. Local Area Office: 902-890-1573 GUYSBOROUGH COUNTY: Melford Brook Bridge The Melford Brook Bridge on Route 344 at Middle Melford is closed. A two-lane detour bridge is in place until a permanent bridge is built. The speed limit has been reduced to 60 kilometres per hour and warning signs are in place. Local Area Office: 902-533-2771 VICTORIA COUNTY: Corsen Bridge Traffic on Corsen Bridge on the Cabot Trail, two kilometres south of Ingonish, is reduced to one lane until further notice. Local Area Office: 902-383-2232 CUMBERLAND COUNTY: Northport Bridge Northport Bridge on Route 366 is closed until late August, while it is replaced. A detour is available from Shinimicas Road to east of the bridge and Mudcreek Road to west of the bridge. Cyclists should travel with caution. Local Area Office: 902-667-2972 PICTOU COUNTY: Ferry Road Ferry Road, from the Three Brooks Road to Highway 106, about a half kilometre, will be reduced to one lane for road work until Wednesday, Aug. 31. Public should expect delays. Traffic control people on site. Work takes place from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-752-6224 GUYSBOROUGH COUNTY: Route 316 Route 316 from 4.7 kilometres west of Trunk 16 to about one kilometre west of the White Head Road will have alternating lane closures for upgrading, cold planing an re-paving until Monday, Oct. 31. Pilot vehicle and traffic control people on site. Work takes place from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-533-2771 CUMBERLAND COUNTY: Allan Hill and South Branch Roads Allan Hill and South Branch roads in the Advocate area have a weight restriction of five tonnes until further notice. Local Area Office: 902-667-2972 CAPE BRETON REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY: Route 216 Route 216, from Trunk 4, west for about seven kilometres will be reduced to one lane for repaving until Friday, Sept. 30. Work takes place from daylight to dusk. Local Area Office: 902-794-5120 CUMBERLAND COUNTY: Highway 104 Sections of the westbound lanes of Highway 104 between Exit 6 (Oxford) and Exit 7 (Thomson Station) will be reduced to one lane until Monday, July 4, for paving. Please drive with caution in the construction area. Local Area Office: 902-447-3160 INVERNESS COUNTY: Trunk 19 Trunk 19, for about 6.5 kilometres from Campbell’s Road to south of Chishom Road, and River Deny’s Road, for about two kilometres from Trunk 19, will be reduced to one lane for cold planing and asphalt repairs until Monday, Oct. 31. Pilot vehicle and traffic control people will be on site. Work takes place from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-625-4200 KINGS COUNTY: Highway 101 Highway 101, Exit 12 to 13, will be reduced to one lane for cold planing and repaving until Friday, July 15. Drivers should expect delays of up to 20 minutes. Local Area Office: 902-542-6344 CONTINUING WORK INVERNESS COUNTY: Murrays Hill Bridge Murrays Hill Bridge, which crosses the Mabou River near Rankinville Road, is closed until further notice. Local Area Office: 902-625-4388 CUMBERLAND COUNTY: Highway 104 Lane Closure Traffic on the westbound lanes of Highway 104 will be subject to lane closures between exits 6 and 7 during repaving. Work is scheduled for completion on Sunday, July 31. Delays are possible. Drivers should use extra caution in the area. Local Office: 902-447-2550 COLCHESTER COUNTY: Route 289 – Springside Route 289 from Junction 336 (Springside) east for six kilometres will be reduced to one lane for paving until Wednesday, Aug. 31. Work takes place from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-896-7085 KINGS COUNTY: Highway 101, Exit 11 and Exit 12 Highway 101, from one kilometre east of Exit 11 (Greenwich) to Exit 12 (New Minas), will be reduced to one lane for patching, crack sealing and surfacing until Sunday, July 31. Traffic control people will be on site. Work takes place from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-538-4199 PICTOU COUNTY: Highway 104 Two temporary intersections are now in use on Highway 104, Trans-Canada Highway, near Sutherlands River. One is located about 70 metres west of the Exit 27A intersection. To access Trunk 4, use this temporary intersection. The other intersection is on School Road in front of East Pictou Middle School. To access School Road, including F. H. MacDonald Elementary School and East Pictou Middle School, use this temporary intersection. They will be used until summer. Local Area Office: 902-755-7184 LUNENBURG COUNTY: Sperry Bridge Sperry Bridge in Petite Rivière will be closed for repairs until Friday, July 8. Detour on Route 331 from junction at Italy Cross Road to junction at Petite Rivière. Local Area Office: 902-543-8169 HANTS COUNTY: Highway 101, Exit 5 Highway 101, eastbound lanes from Exit 5 east to the beginning of the Portland Cement Concrete Section near Ellershouse, and the westbound lane will be reduced to one lane for paving until Friday, July 15. Signs are in place. Work takes place from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-798-5957 COLCHESTER COUNTY: Route 326 Route 326 from south of East Earltown, north for about 6.5 kilometres toward Denmark, will be reduced to one lane for repaving, brush cutting, guardrail repair and other upgrades from until Sunday, July 31. Traffic control people will be on site but delays are possible. Work takes place from sunrise to sunset. Local Area Office: 902-893-5776 DIGBY COUNTY: Dick Theriault Road The bridge on Dick Theriault Road, about two kilometres southeast of the old DAR crossing, is closed for repairs. There is no detour. Transportation officials will be on site 24 hours a day until the bridge is repaired. Local Area Office: 902-769-2192 RICHMOND COUNTY: West Bay Highway Sections of West Bay Highway (Dundee Road), east from County Line Road, will be reduced to one lane until Monday, Oct. 31, for paving. A pilot vehicle will be onsite. Travel with extra caution. Local Area Office: 902-625-4200 PICTOU COUNTY: Three Brooks Road Three Brooks Road, from Pictou town line to Highway 106, almost nine kilometres, is reduced to one lane for road work until Wednesday, Aug. 31. Public should expect delays. Traffic control people on site. Work takes place from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-752-6224 CUMBERLAND COUNTY: Trunk 4 Lane Closure Traffic on Trunk 4 near Exit 7 off Highway 104 will be subject to lane closures during repaving. Traffic will be controlled by signs and traffic control people. Work is scheduled for completion on Sunday, July 31. Delays are possible. Drivers should use extra caution in the area. Local Office: 902-447-2550 CAPE BRETON COUNTY: Highway 125 Traffic on the westbound lanes of Highway 125 near Sydney River will be reduced to one lane between Exit 4 and Exit 5A for repaving until Sunday, July 31. Work takes place from sunrise to sunset and delays are possible. Drivers should use extra caution. Local Area Office: 902-563-2518 ANNAPOLIS COUNTY: Clarence Road Clarence Road, from Fitch Road intersection west for three kilometres, will be reduced to one lane for ditching, culvert replacement, milling, patching and shouldering until Monday, Oct. 31. Traffic control is on site. Work takes place from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Local Area Office: 902-825-4151 VICTORIA COUNTY: MacLeod Bridge The northbound lane of MacLeod Bridge, on the Cabot Trail in Cape North, will be closed for repairs until further notice. A traffic control person will be on site until traffic signals are installed. Local Area Office: 902-295-2700 -30-last_img read more

Consultations on Family Law Changes Begin

first_imgThe province is asking Nova Scotians to give feedback on legal reforms that will help ensure that families going through a break-up have modern and clear laws governing child custody and access. The Maintenance and Custody Act and Reciprocal Enforcement of Custody Orders Act are the two laws being updated and clarified. “These laws have become outdated and need to be modernized. For example, one change will add family violence as a factor to consider when making custody or access decisions,” said Justice Minister Ross Landry. “The public consultations will help ensure that the legislative changes proposed reflect the opinions and wishes of Nova Scotians.” The proposed changes to the Maintenance and Custody Act will provide clear guidelines when courts are making custody and access decisions — such as taking into consideration whether a parent has committed family violence. They also include the principle that a child should have as much contact with each parent, if it is in the child’s best interests. The Maintenance and Custody Act deals with issues of custody, maintenance and access between separating couples where divorce proceedings have not commenced or are not relevant. For families experiencing divorce, the federal Divorce Act applies. The Reciprocal Enforcement of Custody Orders Act will be replaced with modern legislation that it is consistent with other provinces and territories. This legislation allows for the recognition and enforcement of custody and access orders from other jurisdictions. The changes to these acts are part of a multi-year project to improve and modernize the province’s family laws. For more information and to find out how Nova Scotians can participate visit www.gov.ns.ca/just/consultation . Interested members of the public are invited to review the documents and provide feedback, electronically or in writing, by Oct. 24. Questions and feedback may be sent by e-mail to familylawfeedback@gov.ns.ca, by phoning 902-424-6094 or sent by mail to Family Law Reform Project, Nova Scotia Department of Justice, 5151 Terminal Rd., P.O. Box 7, Halifax, B3J 2L6.last_img read more

Proposed Scrap Metal Legislation Targets Thieves

first_imgThe province is proposing legislation that will make it harder for thieves to sell stolen metals, which will better protect the health, safety and property of Nova Scotians. “The thieves who are stealing oil pipes, telephone cables and power lines are threatening the safety of Nova Scotians, harming our environment and hurting the economy of our province,” said Justice Minister Ross Landry. “Nova Scotians want these vandals and thieves stopped, and we intend to make it harder for them to profit from their crimes.” Before the legislation is introduced, Mr. Landry is asking for input from Nova Scotians, including the scrap metal industry. The legislation would require scrap metal dealers and recyclers to keep a record of their transactions, including the identity of the seller. They must also notify police when they receive certain items, such as industrial copper wire. The penalties for not complying with the legislation would be a fine of up to $5,000 or one year in jail. “Copper theft is a real problem in Nova Scotia,” said Paul Casey, director of reliability and control centre operations for Nova Scotia Power. “These thefts cause unnecessary power outages, they cost our customers hundreds of thousands of dollars in unnecessary expenses, and they create hazardous worksites for our crews who have to repair the damage.” The consultation period will close Friday, Oct. 21. More information on how Nova Scotians can be involved can be found at www.gov.ns.ca/just/consultation .last_img read more

Extension Granted for Independent Investigation

first_imgThe independent investigation into the arrest and detention of Victoria Rose Paul will be extended by three months. Independent investigator Nadine Cooper Mont asked for, and has received, an extension to June 1, to complete her report. “I am focused on providing the most thorough possible investigation,” said Ms. Cooper Mont. “I understand the need to complete this report in a timely fashion. However, I also need to be satisfied that no stone was left unturned.” Ms. Paul was arrested on Aug. 28, 2009. While in the custody of Truro Police Service, she suffered a massive stroke and was transferred to hospital on Aug. 29. The 44-year-old woman died Sept. 5, 2009 in a Halifax hospital. Ms. Cooper Mont is investigating how Truro Police Service handled the incident, and is reviewing the subsequent investigation by Halifax Regional Police. “I want to continue to express my sympathy to the family and friends of Ms. Paul,” said Justice Minister Ross Landry. “I also want to thank all involved for their patience as this important independent investigation is completed.” Mr. Landry announced the investigation Aug. 25, 2011. It was expected to last six months.last_img read more

Province Offers More Protection for Cyberbullying Victims

first_imgVictims of cyberbullying now have more places to turn as Nova Scotia leads the country with new cyber-safety laws. Justice Minister Ross Landry announced today, Aug. 7, people can seek a protection order from the court or sue if they, or their child, is being cyberbullied. The protections are part of the new Cyber-safety Act to protect victims and hold cyberbullies accountable for their actions. “Too many young people and their families are being hurt by cyberbullies,” said Mr. Landry. “I committed to families that the province would work with them to better protect our children and young people. Court orders, and the ability to sue, are more tools that help put a stop to this destructive behaviour. “This sends a clear message, cyberbullying is a serious act with serious consequences. Think before you text.” The parts of the Cyber-safety Act effective today allow victims to apply through the Justice of the Peace centre for a protection order that could place restrictions on, or help identify, the cyberbully. Victims can also sue the cyberbully, whose parents can be held liable for damages if the cyberbully is a minor. “We’ve all been affected by cyberbullying, whether it has happened to us or someone we know or we’ve just seen it online,” said Chantel O’Brien, a member of the province’s Youth Advisory Council. “These amendments will be a wake-up call to those who think they can hide behind a computer to avoid being held accountable. It’s reassuring to see the government taking action to ensure youth can feel safe in their own homes.” New changes to the Education Act clarify the role of principals in acting when this issue affects schools. They now have a clear responsibility to respond, even to incidents of bullying and cyberbullying that occur beyond the school ground or after school hours. The CyberSCAN unit, the first in Canada, is the final piece of the Cyber-safety Act. The unit will be running in September. Roger Merrick, the unit’s director, is hiring five investigators who will investigate all complaints of cyberbullying, whether the victim is a minor or an adult. In addition to the new civil laws, Premier Dexter led discussions on actions to address cyberbullying at Council of the Federation meetings in July. Premiers acknowledged his national leadership and endorsed initiatives he brought to the table such as strengthening the criminal code to make distributing intimate images without consent a crime. The province has also committed to an independent review by out-of-province experts into the Public Prosecutions Service and police actions in the Rehtaeh Parsons case. The review will begin after the criminal investigation is complete. For more information about the Cyber-safety Act, go to http://novascotia.ca/just/.last_img read more

River Hebert Renovations Go Ahead

first_imgStudents in River Hebert will soon be attending an improved and expanded school. Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Karen Casey announced today, Dec. 5, that Dora Construction has won a $6.15-million competitive tender for renovations and an addition to River Hebert District High School. The renovations will create a Primary to Grade 12 school. River Hebert Elementary will then close and students will move into the facility in 2015. “The young people and families of River Hebert are eager to see this project completed,” said Ms. Casey. “I want to thank the community for its patience during this project. We made a commitment to see this project move forward again. After these renovations, the students will be attending a modern school that includes improved learning opportunities in all program areas.” The province took over management of the project in September. The renovations include updating the building and a two-storey addition. The project includes improved areas, such as a library, cafeteria, music room, science labs, a youth health centre and new elementary classrooms. Total cost of the project is $10 million.last_img read more

Museum of Natural History Launches Sable Island Exhibit

first_imgThe Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History launched a new permanent exhibit, Sable Island: Over the Dunes, Beyond Wild Horses, today, Oct. 8. Research and development in science and exhibit technology began more than two years ago. A planning team used the natural history collection to help convey the rich diversity of plants and animals. “Everybody on the team has been very keen, and I attribute that to the profound subject matter,” said David Carter, design lead. “The spirit of Sable Island helped us through the production, helping us achieve an engaging experience for visitors. “It is truly a living exhibit because it has program space for the science community and Sable Island researchers to use for presentations to the public, and it is well suited for school groups.” Sable Island National Park Reserve, 300 kilometers southeast of Halifax, is famous for its wild horses and shipwrecks. The exhibit explores the rich diversity of plants and animals that thrive on the sandbar island despite the winds, waves and isolation. “There is a certain mystique about Sable Island that keeps people wanting to know more about it,” said Communities, Culture and Heritage Minister Tony Ince. “The exhibit will give visitors of all ages a chance to see the depth and richness of the museum’s collection of Sable Island specimens and artifacts, many on display for the first time.” The 2,000-square-foot exhibit includes a recreated research station and a sandbox that allows visitors to change the island’s topography by moving the sand. The exhibit also includes a rearing horse skeleton that rotates so visitors can see it against a backdrop of a window mural of two full-sized stallions. The exhibit features selections from the largest Maritimes walrus collection in the world, with skull, jawbone and tusk specimens dating back to the mid-1700s. Sable Island: Over the Dunes, Beyond Wild Horses opens with a public reception today, Oct. 8th at 7:30 p.m. at the Museum of Natural history, 1747 Summer St. Halifax. For more information, visit naturalhistory.novascotia.ca .last_img read more

2015 Human Rights Awards Recipients

first_imgThe 2015 Nova Scotia Human Rights Awards were presented at Government House today, Dec. 10, commemorating the 65th International Human Rights Day. Individuals and organizations are nominated annually by their peers to recognize contributions to the community in the field of human rights. “Human rights underpin the relationships we have with each other and with the institutions that serve us,” said Diana Whalen, Minister responsible for the Human Rights Commission. “Each of us can contribute to fostering awareness and respect for human rights and create a more just and inclusive Nova Scotia.” This year’s youth award recipients are a group of teenage students from Highland Park Junior High’s Gender/Sexuality Alliance. The alliance provides a safe space and support for their LGBTI peers and educates the larger student body, administration and staff about LGBTI issues. Among the group’s initiatives are the creation of a gender-neutral washroom and helping to raise awareness of the province’s Guidelines for Supporting Transgender and Gender-nonconforming Students. Warren C. “Gus” Reed and Afua Cooper are the two recipients of this year’s Dr. Burnley Allan “Rocky” Jones award for individuals. Mr. Reed is a well-known advocate for accessibility, inclusion and the rights of people with disabilities. He is the co-founder and spokesperson for the James McGregor Stewart Society through which he writes and advocates on issues ranging from physical accessibility of public and private-sector buildings to the under representation of Nova Scotians with disabilities in the province’s workforce. Ms. Cooper is a tireless community leader, advocate, academic and author in the area of cultural diversity and inclusion. A professor at Dalhousie University, she is dedicated to fostering empowerment, engagement and leadership to share and shape the understanding and contributions of people of African descent. She is the James Robinson Johnston chair in Black Canadian Studies, the only position of its kind in Canada. Project ARC – Action, Responsibility, Choice – is this year’s recipient in the group/organization category. A vibrant and diverse theatre troupe of multitalented youth aged 12-18, they use performing arts and interactive peer education to engage children and youth on issues of human rights, respect and inclusion. “This year’s recipients represent the commitment required to address significant human rights issues that affect all of us,” said Eunice Harker, chair of the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission. “To see youth so well represented is impressive and will hopefully inspire others to take action and create positive change.” Government House was chosen as the venue for this year’s awards presentation in part due to its recent receipt of a 2015 Award of Excellence in VisitAble Housing from VisitAble Housing Canada. Improvements to the accessibility of the residence during its three-year renovation included the installation of an elevator, accessible washrooms and barrier-free paths of travel. “I am delighted to be able to play a role in presenting these important awards” said Lt.-Gov. J.J. Grant. “Today’s recipients have set a fine example for all Nova Scotians to follow.” To learn more about the human rights awards and the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission, visit http://humanrights.gov.ns.ca. For photos from today’s awards ceremony email jeff.overmars@novascotia.ca.last_img read more

Legislature Rises After Spring Session

first_img introduced the Service Dog Act, clarifying owners’ rights and responsibilities introduced a new Mineral Resources Act to encourage mineral exploration and development clarified government records management to make operations more efficient introduced a tax credit for donations to food banks by local farmers aligned business record-keeping requirements with other Maritime provinces to make it easier for businesses who operate in more than one province For a complete list of bills passed this session, visit nslegislature.ca . Government continued with its commitment to growing the economy, improving the education system and providing opportunities for youth during the spring sitting of the 62nd general assembly, which wrapped-up today, May 20. “This session focused on investing in opportunities for economic growth, improving the quality of public education, and starting the QEII redevelopment,” said Premier Stephen McNeil. “Budget 2016-2017 is a step in the right direction for a stronger Nova Scotia, and we will continue working together with Nova Scotians to stay on track.” This session was highlighted by the introduction of a balanced budget which included investments to grow the wine industry and other export sectors, high-speed Internet and immigration. Government increased funding for home support and nursing and other programs to keep seniors active and healthy. Government continued investing in education by reducing class sizes in grades 5-6, implementing the Education Action Plan and adding three new SchoolsPlus sites and an expansion of a fourth. Government also invested in a multi-year redesign of the QEII Health Sciences Centre and increased funding to reduce orthopedic wait times to help all Nova Scotians. During this session government also:last_img read more

Vardhan cycles to work on day one as health minister

first_imgNew Delhi: It was doctor’s day at Nirman Bhawan, the official address of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, as Dr Harsh Vardhan, who has been appointed as the new Health Minister in the Modi cabinet, arrived on a cycle to take charge as the Union Health Minister on Monday. Vardhan, who won the Chandni Chowk Lok Sabha seat in Delhi, ascribed the act to his (reaching office on a cycle) ‘green good deed’ for the day as he sets one ‘greed good deed’ every day and advised all to do the same to protect the environment. Also Read – Pak activated 20 terror camps & 20 launch pads along LoCAfter taking charge, he tweeted that he was “grateful” to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for trusting him. “Today, I took charge as the Health and Family Minister. I am thankful to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for trusting me. The health of the people of this country is the top priority of the Modi government. I will put in best of my efforts to fulfil my responsibilities as a minister,” he said. Highlighting his priorities, Vardhan said, “Strengthening the implementation of the Ayushman Bharat-Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojna (PM-JAY), ensuring that people in every nook and cranny of the country are able to avail the benefits of the scheme.” Also Read – Two squadrons which participated in Balakot airstrike awarded citations”Since the launch of PM-JAY, around 27 lakh people have availed the benefits under the scheme. However, still many people are not aware of it. Some people who are in dire need of the benefits provided under the insurance scheme is not able to avail it due to eligibility criteria issues,” Vardhan said. Vardhan also emphasised to make health a ‘Jan Andolan’ through people’s involvement. On other priorities, he said, “We have to complete the unfinished target of transforming nearly 1.5 lakh primary health centres and sub-centres as ‘health and wellness centres’ by 2022.” Eradication of Tuberculosis by 2025, completing new AIIMS projects announced by the previous government and reforming the medical education sector will also be key priorities of the newly-appointed minister.last_img read more

11 sentenced to life imprisonment in Jharkhand for rape

first_imgDumka: A local court Monday sentenced 11 persons to life imprisonment for raping a 19-year-old woman in Dumka district of Jharkhand in 2017. District and Sessions Judge (II) Pawan Kumar, who had convicted them on June 7, also imposed varying fine totalling Rs 2.97 lakh on them, additional public prosecutor Surendra Prasad Sinha said. According to the FIR lodged at Muffasil Police Station, the convicts had first demanded money and a mobile phone from the woman as penalty because her friend was a non-tribal, and then all of them raped her near Dighi village on September 6, 2017. The girl and her male friend were returning after taking a stroll near Sidho Kanhu Murmu University campus at Dighi, eight km from here, when they encountered the men at the crossing of Ring Road and Dighi Road.last_img read more

WBBSE waives processing fee for students wanting to check answer scripts

first_imgKolkata: The West Bengal Board of Secondary Education (WBBSE) has waived the processing fees of students seeking inspection of their answer scripts under Right to Information (RTI) Act.However, for supply of certified photocopy of the answer scripts, a charge of Rs 2 will be charged for each page. The petitioner will have to deposit the money in cash against the receipt of a challan at the board office. A student dissatisfied with his/her marks in a particular subject and wanting to see the answer script of Madhyamik examination under RTI Act had to pay a fee of Rs 100 for taking photocopies of their scripts home. Also Read – Centuries-old Durga Pujas continue to be hit among revellers”Now the student will have to pay only the photocopy charges and no processing fee,” an official in WBBSE said. A notification in this regard undersigned by WBBSE president Kalyanmoy Ganguly has been uploaded in the website of the board. It may be mentioned that the West Bengal Council of Higher Secondary Education (WBCHSE) has introduced a new system, through which students who have already appeared for their higher secondary examination can apply for self inspection of their answer scripts. An online interface has been made available at the council website from July 5, through which the students can apply for self inspection of his/her answer scripts of the examination, by filling up a prescribed format. The student will be able to keep track of the latest status of the application as well. The council will make the scripts available and the student will be notified to pay a visit on a particular date.last_img read more

S Korea Japan fail to resolve growing trade dispute

first_imgSeoul: South Korea and Japan on Friday failed to immediately resolve their dispute over Japanese export restrictions that could hurt South Korean technology companies, as Seoul called for an investigation by the United Nations or another international body. Tokyo last week tightened the approval process for shipments of photoresists and other sensitive materials to South Korea, saying they can be exported only to trustworthy trading partners. Also Read – Maruti cuts production for 8th straight month in SepThe move, which could affect South Korean manufacturers of semiconductors and display screens used in TVs and smartphones, has triggered a full-blown diplomatic dispute and further soured relations long troubled over Japan’s brutal colonial rule of Korea before the end of World War II. At their first meeting in Tokyo since the crisis erupted, Japanese officials told their South Korean counterparts that Tokyo saw weaknesses in Seoul’s export controls. They said that the trade curbs were not retaliation for South Korean court rulings that ordered Japanese firms to compensate aging South Korean plaintiffs for forced labor during World War II, as per a Japanese trade ministry official. Lee Ho-hyeon, an official from South Korea’s trade ministry, said Japanese officials cited inadequate bilateral discussions as a reason why their government tightened controls on high-tech exports to South Korea, but didn’t clearly say whether Tokyo believes Seoul may have illegally transferred sensitive materials to North Korea. Also Read – Ensure strict implementation on ban of import of e-cigarettes: revenue to CustomsLee said South Korean officials countered by saying that Seoul has a stronger export control system than Tokyo’s. The Japanese officials also reiterated that they won’t negotiate over the trade curbs and said, without specifying, that there have been “inappropriate” cases regarding Japanese exports to South Korea. When pressed by South Korean officials, the Japanese said the cases were unrelated to illegal shipments to a third country but refused to provide details, Lee said. He said South Korean officials protested that Japan was providing only “very abstract” reasons for its stricter export controls. “The positions still differ (between two sides),” Lee said. “We did not see any willingness by Japan to change its measures from this meeting.” The meeting started in an icy atmosphere, with officials skipping handshakes and staring at each other across the table in silence for several minutes, and continued for nearly six hours. Kim You-geun, deputy director of South Korea’s presidential national security office, said South Korea has been thoroughly implementing U.N. sanctions against North Korea over its nuclear weapons program. He demanded that Japan provide evidence for claims made by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his conservative aides that there may have been illegal transfers of sensitive materials from South Korea to North Korea. Kim said his government proposes Japan accept an inquiry by the U.N. or another body over the export controls of both countries to end “needless arguments” and to clearly prove whether the Japanese claims are true or not. He said South Korea has been imposing stringent export controls on arms and sensitive materials that can be used for both civilian and military purposes as a signatory of major international pacts that govern such transactions.last_img read more

Delhi CM writes to Amit Shah Sitharaman seeking funds

first_imgNEW DELHI: Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday wrote letters to Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman over the need of funds for Delhi.”I would like to bring to your kind attention that the Government of NCT of Delhi has a separate Consolidated Fund w.e.f. December 1993. The pattern of funding of Delhi’s Budget has been changed from the year 1994-95 and is at par with other States. The financial transactions of Government of NCT of Delhi including servicing of small saving loans are being met out of our own resources like other States,” he wrote. Also Read – Gurdwara Bangla Sahib bans single use plasticThe CM also noted that the omission of article 270(3) resulted in an anomaly which has adversely affected the finances of Delhi. ” The transfer of grants in lieu of share in Central Taxes has remained stagnant at Rs. 325.00 crore per annum since the year 2000 which happened to be the last year of the duration of the Tenth Finance Commission. Leaving out Union Territories out of the ambit of Finance Commissions, has only affected the Union Territories with Legislature since the Budget of the other Union Territories is entirely met from the Consolidated Fund of India,” he wrote. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderHe further observed, “I shall be grateful if you could kindly look into the matter personally and provide additional Terms of Reference to the Fifteenth Finance Commission to enable the Commission to recommend the legitimate Share of NCT of Delhi in Central Taxes, basic & performance grants to local bodies and other grants if any being recommended to States for the Award period of the Fifteenth Finance Commission. ” The CM noted that Additional Terms of Reference to the Finance Commission at this stage would bring justice to the people of Delhi and rectify the anomaly created by the inadvertent omission of Article 270(3).last_img read more

Kolkata registers 65 deficit rainfall in July

first_imgKolkata: The city has registered around 65 per cent average deficit rainfall in July so far while the figure in case of the state stands at 36 per cent.The Regional Meteorological Centre in Alipore in the last month predicted a shortage in rainfall across the state in July. Bengal had also received less amount of rain in June compared to the corresponding month in the previous years due to the late coming of the monsoon and an irregularity in the rainfall. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaThe situation did not improve in the current month as the rain deficit continues to haunt the people in the state. Deficit rainfall is a major cause of concern for the farmers and it may affect the crops in various districts. The weather office on Monday said that there is no possibility of rainfall in the city and South Bengal districts in the next three days. All the North Bengal districts are expected to receive heavy rainfall in the next four days. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayA rainfall alert has been issued to the districts in North Bengal. According to a weather official, a low pressure trough is expected to form over Bay of Bengal on Thursday which would bring moderate to heavy rainfall in all the South Bengal districts on Friday and Saturday. The city dwellers are under the spell of hot and humid weather for quite some time. Due to a shortage in rainfall the humidity level in South Bengal shoots up giving difficult days to the people across South Bengal. “As there was no significant rainfall in South Bengal in past two months, people are experiencing sultry weather. A low pressure trough formed over Bay of Bengal few days ago finally moved towards Odisha and Andhra Pradesh giving a miss to the city. There has been a significant shortage in rainfall in the city and South Bengal districts as well in July,” a weather expert said. Various farmers from districts such as East Burdwan, Nadia, Murshidabad and North 24-Parganas have already complained about damage of crops due to high-level of humidity. The paddy cultivation has also been affected due to scarcity of rainfall. The rain deficit in the two consecutive months hit the farmers hard and the shortage also casts a spell of doubt as to what will happen to their crops if the situation continues. North Bengal districts have received heavy rainfall ever since the south-western monsoon made incursion into the region.last_img read more

Two held for killing head constable

first_imgNew Delhi: Delhi Police on Monday said that they had solved the murder case of head constable who was shot dead in Jaitpur area last year. The investigating agency arrested two men from Alwar area in the case. Police identified the accused as Chinder Pal (22) and Irshad Khan (19). However, one of the associates is still absconding. The investigating agency further disclosed that during investigation, it was found that on September 11, 2018, the accused persons were roaming on their bike in the area of Jaitpur and targeted a bike parked in the residential area near Tanki Road, Meethapur. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murder”Accused were conducting recee before stealing the bike. In the meantime, deceased HC Ram Avtar reached the spot and got suspicious about the movement of accused persons, ” police said. Adding furtherr, police said that Ram Avtar questioned the accused persons about their presence in the area but none of them gave satisfactory reply. “The assailants thought that Ram Avtar might be a hurdle so they decided to eliminate him. Chinder Pal shot him with a country-made pistol. Thereafter, all three accused persons fled on their bike from the spot, ” police said. Later on September 12, 2018, police were informed by the hospital that Ram Avtar was declared brought dead due to gunshot injury.last_img read more

4L to be skilled under Textile Ministrys Samarth scheme

first_imgNew Delhi: Around four lakh people across 18 states will be skilled under ‘Samarth’, a scheme for capacity building and skilling in the textile sector, as part of agreements signed between the Centre and state governments.Sixteen state governments signed MoUs with the Ministry of Textiles at a function here on Wednesday in the presence of Union Minister Smriti Irani to take Samarth – Scheme for Capacity Building in Textile Sector (SCBTS) forward. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’Eighteen states have agreed to partner with the ministry under the scheme. Representatives of Jammu & Kashmir and Odisha were not present during the function. “Given the diligence that you (state government representatives) have shown by your mere presence here, that gives me hope that today 18 of us including Government of India have resolved only under this one roof to skill 4 lakh people which I think is the first such big step ever in the history of our country,” the textile minister said. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KThe 18 states include Arunachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Kerala, Mizoram, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Tripura, Karnataka, Odisha, Manipur, Haryana, Meghalaya, Jharkhand and Uttarakhand. After the training, employment will be provided to all these beneficiaries in various textile-related activities. The programme covers the entire value chain of textile sector except spinning and weaving. The textile-related segments for which skill development will be provided towards capacity building include apparel and garmenting, knitting, metal handicraft, textile and handloom, handicraft and carpet, among others. “It has been the endeavour of the prime minister that for a new India we ensure that each and every citizen who seeks resources for sustenance is skilled and it is this endeavour in the sector of textiles that SAMARTH took shape,” Irani said. However, she observed that Tamil Nadu, especially the Tirupur cluster desires more skilling opportunities. The number of beneficiaries in Tamil Nadu is estimated at 1,400 covering the textiles and handloom segment. Highlighting that 75 per cent of those who work in textile sector are women, Irani said in the MUDRA scheme also it has been seen that 70 per cent of the beneficiaries are women, suggesting the state representatives to look at district-wise tailoring opportunities for women as part of the outreach for skilling across states. She further added that Northeastern states must focus on silk and jute sector and review the targets of skilling under Samarth scheme. Textile Secretary Ravi Capoor in his address said India is a very small player in the global market and there is huge potential of employment generation in the textile sector. He informed that there is a gap of 16 lakh trained skilled workers in textile industry. The Samarth scheme targets to train 10 lakh people over a period of three years (2017-20) with an estimated budget of Rs 1,300 crore.last_img read more

Second occupant of car comes to fore in Shakespeare Sarani accident

first_imgKolkata: Air is yet to clear on the Shakespeare Sarani accident case, with identification of another person who was in the Jaguar with Raghib Parvez at the time of accident.During interrogation, Raghib stated that one of his friends was also in the car at the time of accident, who had fled with him. After his statement, CCTV footages were scrutinised again, where police found presence of the second person. On Thursday, Arsalan, Raghib and their maternal uncle Md Hamza were produced at Bankshall Court. Though Arsalan and Hamza were granted bail, Raghib has been remanded to police custody till September 3. Significantly, the defense counsel did not even appeal for his bail. Police are also mulling to initiate case against other family members of Parvez, for misleading them. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaAfter Raghib was arrested, investigating officers grilled him throughout the night. During interrogation, Raghib stated that he and one of his friends were coming back from a birthday party. He was going to Salt Lake in order to drop his friend there. But all of a sudden, they got in touch with another friend and went towards Kyd Street. But at the last moment, the second friend refused to meet. As a result, Raghib turned his car and was going towards Park Circus in order to go onto Maa flyover. After getting this information, Raghib’s friend was detained and questioned. However, police did not disclose his name as he is a witness to the case. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayDuring the hearing, the defense counsel argued for Arsalan and Hamza’s bail, as they were charged with causing disappearance of evidences, providing shelter and allowing the accused to flee. However, he did not utter a word about Raghib’s bail. Sources claimed that it was almost a matter of surety that Raghib will not be granted bail as he had fled the country after committing the crime. Arsalan and Hamza’s bail was eventually granted against bail bond worth Rs 5,000. Their passports will have to be submitted to the police as well. Meanwhile, Raghib was produced with charges which were earlier slapped on Arsalan. Sources informed that although none of the other members of the Parvez family has been booked till Thursday, police are mulling to initiate case against them as they had misled investigators by framing Arsalan as the offender.last_img read more

KMC to hold competition to drive out dengue

first_imgKolkata: The Kolkata Municipal Corporation will hold competition among puja organisers conducting anti-larvae drive in all the 16 boroughs under its jurisdiction. The participating Durga Puja committees will fill up application forms which will be available from September 2 to 9. The KMC will give cash prizes to five Durga puja committees in each borough. There will be trophies for the champion and runner’s up puja committee and three puja committees will be given special prizes under the Mayor’s choice category. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaThe puja committee will be given festoons, banners and leaflets free of cost by the KMC on dengue prevention which they will put up and distribute in their respective areas. Senior civic officials said the dengue awareness drive by the puja committees have earned tremendous response from the public in the past few years. The puja organisers distribute leaflets among the visitors on dos and don’ts against dengue. Also, the colourful banners and posters that are put up attract the people. The puja committees carry out cleanliness drives in the areas surrounding the puja pandals and remove the plastic tea cups and water bottles. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayThe civic officials said the sustained awareness drives along with regular vigilance have helped to reduce the number of dengue cases. The awareness drives and the anti-larvae drives are carried out throughout the year. Deputy mayor Atin Ghosh said drives were carried out at the houses, housing complexes, educational institutions and state and central government establishments that include offices, staff quarters and hospitals. The KMC has set up sengue detection clinics in every borough and blood collection centres in every ward. The people afflicted with the disease are given medicines free of cost. The KMC has asked all the private laboratories to conduct blood test as per ELISA norms and not by using dengue kits.last_img read more

Maruti to halt production at Haryana plants for two days

first_imgNew Delhi: The country’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) on Wednesday said it has decided to suspend production at its Gurugram and Manesar plants in Haryana for two days. The company said it will halt manufacturing operations at the two manufacturing facilities on September 7 and 9. “Both days will be observed as no production days,” MSI said in a statement. Reeling under severe slowdown, the auto major had reduced its production by 33.99 per cent in August, making it the seventh straight month of reduction. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details The company produced a total of 1,11,370 units in August as against 1,68,725 units in the year-ago month. Passenger vehicles’ production last month stood at 1,10,214 units as against 1,66,161 units in August 2018, a decline of 33.67 per cent. In July, the automaker had cut its production by 25.15 percent to 1,33,625 units. On September 1, the company had reported a 33 per cent dip in total sales last month at 1,06,413 units as compared with 1,58,189 units in August 2018.last_img read more

Bowbazar residents reluctant to sign NOC for demolition of houses

first_imgKolkata: The residents and shop owners at Bowbazar are reluctant to sign the no-objection certificate (NOC) for demolishing their buildings that have been severely damaged due to the tunnel boring for East-West Metro project, unless Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation Limited (KMRCL) gives them in writing when they are going to hand over their new houses.”We have not signed the no-objection certificate. We want KMRCL to give us in writing the duration after which they would hand over the new houses,” said Vijay Suryavanshi, a resident of 12, Syakra Para Lane, who also runs Vijay Assay Centre Private Limited. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaWhile the KMRCL has identified 35 buildings in Bowbazar which are beyond repair, 20 such buildings will soon be razed to the ground. KMRCL, the executing agency of the East-West Metro project, has already informed the core committee headed by Chief Secretary Malay De about the development. A total of approximately 74 buildings have suffered damages or developed cracks in the mishap. More than 600 residents living at Durga Pithuri Lane, Syakra Para Lane and Gour De Lane have been evacuated till now. The evacuated residents of all these houses have been shifted to various hotels across the city for temporary accommodation by KMRCL. It might be mentioned that state Planning and Statistics minister Tapas Roy also had to vacate his house situated at 105 B B Ganguly Street. According to senior civic officials, the worst affected buildings are over 100 years old and have not been repaired for the past 50 years or more.last_img read more

Tweets about tragic events are a social media minefield experts warn

first_imgTORONTO – Think before you post, social media experts say after an uproar emerged over messages that expressed sorrow over Toronto’s deadly van tragedy while also appearing to promote shoes and hot yoga.Social media users were quick to criticize Moksha Yoga Bloor West when it posted a photo of the man accused in the killings on Facebook and Instagram on Tuesday with the words “Alek is our mirror” and encouraging “the practice of compassion.”Alek Minassian faces 10 first-degree murder charges and 13 attempted murder charges for allegedly driving a van down a Toronto street and sidewalk on a killing rampage. More charges were expected Friday.The yoga studio’s director Don Christensen says Instagram and Facebook removed the message without his knowledge after an onslaught of criticism. He apologized on Facebook on Wednesday, saying his timing was off and that he failed to consider the impact.Christensen adds in an interview Friday that the post was not meant as promotion.“I issued a call for compassion. In no way was I telling people how to grieve and I’m sorry this hurt people,” Christensen says. “The practice of compassion is what helped me when I lost family members to murder.”Meanwhile, the Instagram feed for fashion blogger Amber Desilets, under the moniker canadianfashionista1, came under fire for promoting shoes Monday while also mentioning the tragedy earlier that day.“I hummed and hawed about sharing tonight’s blog post, but in case you’re looking for an escape from sadness, I’m sharing my top wearable trends for spring, including these fabulous new kicks from my friends at @skechers.canada that can be found at @dswcanada #ad #skechers,” it read.Desilets says she’s “mortified” by how it was received, and realizes now that “it wasn’t a good idea.”She says that Skechers scheduled the post a month ago and that when it came time to mention shoes, she felt compelled to also address the tragedy.“I have a lot of friends and family that live in the area and it was devastating, so I wanted to address it. Never did I want to make money or anything off a tragedy, obviously. I think it just came off wrong. I probably shouldn’t have mentioned it at all.”She says Skechers saw the post once it went live and says nothing. They didn’t ask her to remove reference to the brand until the backlash emerged the next day.The brand could not be reached for comment.“We live and learn. I can only move forward and I’m sorry that I offended people,” Desilets says.Brands love working with influencers for their authenticity and genuine passion, but it’s clear that can sometimes lead to problems, says Jonathan Davids of the media company Influicity, which connects big brands with online tastemakers.“There’s always a fine balance between giving creative freedom and allowing influencers to shine and be in their own spotlight versus ensuring that they’re being brand-safe,” says Davids.Influencers would be better off to separate branded posts from those containing personal comments, he suggests.Striking the right tone is a challenge for average social media users, too, says York University philosophy professor Regina Rini.Speaking about a tragedy with tact can be harder to do online than in person, she adds, and society has not yet adapted to this relatively new way of communicating.Before social media, people would chat over the dinner table, or around the proverbial water cooler.“It’s a normal human thing for everyone to just say the predictable thing: ‘Oh, it’s so sad,’ ‘Oh, I was just there last week,’” says Rini, Canada research chair in philosophy of moral and social cognition.“That’s normal and healthy for people to try to process this. But then once you have a megaphone and you forget that what you’re doing is actually shouting to the entire world, things that are normal and healthy for us to have in small group conversations, they sound kind of pompous when you broadcast them like that.”It’s easy for average social media users to get confused about how big their potential audience really is, she adds.“If you get noticed, then suddenly everyone does read it and the things that might have seemed appropriate to your community … they’re not appropriate to everyone. It seems trivializing and insensitive to make a tragedy about yoga to someone who doesn’t care much about yoga.”Calgary-based blogger Ryan Massel says he was surprised to learn that his Toronto-based co-writer “liked” Desilets’ post on behalf of his site, immrfabulous.com. He says she had backed it without fully reading the post, a practice not uncommon in the tight-knit influencer community.“We’re just cheerleaders of each other, we work in an industry where we’re all a team so we ‘like’ each other’s photos based on content. Some people won’t read the text of it,” he says.But he does not approve of Desilets’ post and also worries about how these controversies will affect his industry’s reputation, fearing “it looks so bad for all of us.”“People are already hard on us and thinking that we’ll do anything for money and we’re just there to shuck a buck,” he says.Massel says he’s refrained from saying anything about the attack but he can see how a blogger might feel compelled to mention it, even if it doesn’t mesh with their image.“I can’t agree with what (Desilets) did but what happens is we just want to share our content and when tragedy happens in the world we still have things that we’re putting out. And we put it out because we have good intentions, we want people to feel good in that moment,” he says.“Sometimes as influencers we step back and we go, ‘There was really solid tragedy today, and I feel guilty putting out something that is good.’ And we shouldn’t feel guilty about putting out something that’s good. We should just be who we are.”Rini says it’s unrealistic to just tell people to stop tweeting about their feelings.Instead, she reminds social media users to always think about their audience.“Imagine that somebody personally affected by this situation is going to read what you posted,” she advises.“Think about what it would look like to see their face and how their voice would sound. How hurt would they be? Is it worth it?”last_img read more

High school teacher charged with cocaine trafficking in New Brunswick

first_imgBATHURST, N.B. – A middle school science teacher with alleged Hells Angels ties has been charged with cocaine trafficking, shedding light on northern New Brunswick’s difficult struggle with outlaw motorcycle gangs and illicit drugs.Julie Michaud, who is also a French teacher at Place-des-Jeunes School in Bathurst, was one of nine people scooped up in a wide-ranging crackdown on alleged associates of the notorious biker gang and their drug-related activities.The involvement of a school teacher in the region’s protracted battle against criminal motorcycle club activities appears to have shaken this tight-knit community.A spokeswoman for the Francophone North-East School District said support services were offered at the Bathurst school last week for both students and personnel affected by the shocking arrest.Annie LeBlanc-Levesque confirmed that Michaud is currently absent from the classroom, but she would not say whether the teacher had been suspended pending the outcome of the case against her.The 35-year-old teacher from Allardville, a small rural community south of Bathurst, was released on conditions and is expected back in court on May 28.The Grade 7 and Grade 8 teacher has been charged with six crimes, including laundering proceeds of crime and possession of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking.The nine arrests last week were the culmination of a nearly 18-month RCMP investigation dubbed Operation J-Thunder that examined cocaine trafficking along the Quebec border and across northern New Brunswick.“There are outlaw motorcycle gangs here in New Brunswick and this is certainly an example of our efforts to disrupt and dismantle organized crime,” Cpl. Jullie Rogers-Marsh said in an interview Monday.Criminal motorcycle clubs are not restricted by borders and “that’s why it’s important for law enforcement agencies to work together,” she said, adding that New Brunswick RCMP recently collaborated with Quebec provincial police.The New Brunswick arrests coincided with more than 60 Hells Angels-related arrests in Quebec — including a Montreal-area police officer — part of broader efforts to stomp out the outlaw biker gang’s activities.The investigation into the trafficking of cocaine on the Acadian Peninsula and in Restigouche, Madawaska and Victoria counties started in November 2016.Police seized about $900,000 and 5.5 kilograms of cocaine over the course of the 18-month investigation.Investigators determined that the drugs were linked to the Hells Angels in Quebec.The Mounties worked with the Edmundston Police Force and exchanged information with the provincial Surete du Quebec during the investigation.The Hells Angels wield considerable clout in the lucrative drug market and have been an ongoing issue across Eastern Canada for years.– By Brett Bundale in Halifaxlast_img read more

McNeil attacks school boards in Nova Scotia election campaign

first_imgHALIFAX – Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil said he’ll put the province’s school boards under the microscope if re-elected because trustees’ decision to vote themselves pay increases while cutting while cutting classroom resources has put them out of step with Nova Scotians’ priorities.McNeil told The Canadian Press Sunday that a proposed 24 per cent stipend increase approved by all but one board sends the wrong signal.“We ask our school board partners to act like every other public servant. You need to make sure that your salary increases are in line with what the province can afford,” McNeil said Sunday. “It is sending a very wrong signal to parents, teachers that school boards would vote themselves a 24 per cent pay raise and then try to justify taking funding out of classrooms that we specifically have increased so that it would be there.”McNeil said if his government is re-elected on May 30 he’ll launch a review of school board administration to look for savings.The Liberals say they’ll freeze school closures while reviewing whether board decisions are in line with the province’s commitments to classroom conditions.McNeil says he wants to make sure schools have the space to put a tighter rein on class sizes in junior and senior high schools, provide universal pre-primary care and add 100 new teachers.“The decision will still be made at the local level, but I think any reasonable person would expect that they should have all the information before they make the decision,” said McNeil. “This is not a top-down approach. This is making sure that they (school boards) know that the broader public policy has changed.”The new policies come at the recommendation of a council looking at classroom conditions, which was established after the province imposed a contract on its 9,300 unionized teachers in February following a messy contract dispute.McNeil said some teachers still have hard feelings about how the negotiations played out, but the Liberals have tried to strike a “balance” by giving them more input into classroom changes.Schools that are slated to be closed would still proceed, said McNeil, and the review would wrap up by the end of the 2017 to take effect the next school year.Tory leader Jamie Baillie accused McNeil of playing politics with education while several of the province’s schools were shuttered on his watch.“His government has caused chaos in our classrooms,” Baillie said in an interview Sunday. “Teachers don’t trust him. Parents wonder why he’s suddenly taking an interest in school boards when he had three years to take action.”The Progressive Conservative Party has long endorsed a review of the province’s school boards, Baillie said, calling them “overly bureaucratic.”Baillie said rural schools have suffered under a Liberal government, and if elected, he would work to ensure taxpayer dollars are used to benefit students.The Nova Scotia School Board could not be reached for comment.last_img read more

Ontario to ban scalper bots in proposed ticket sale reforms

first_imgTORONTO – Ontario is promising to clamp down on online ticket scalping, a source of frustration and anger for fans who have often been unable to secure tickets to their favourite sport or music events.The Liberal government said Monday it will introduce new legislation this fall that will make automated ticket-buying “bots” illegal. It would also cap markups on resold tickets at 50 per cent of their face value.Under the proposed law, ticket resellers would have to disclose more information, including the face value of tickets and any surcharges.The so-called “scalper bots” — software programs designed to purchase online a large number of tickets for a concert, show, or other event, enabling the person running the software to sell those tickets at a profit — made headlines last year when many Tragically Hip fans were unable to buy tickets to the band’s farewell tour.“By the time any real fan is able to log on and search for tickets the best seats are gone,” Yasir Naqvi, Ontario’s attorney general, said as he made the announcement.“Many events sell out completely in minutes, even seconds, and many of these tickets end up on resale sites for huge markups, of course.”He has acknowledged, however, that enforcing a ban on scalper bots, which are not unique to Ontario, would be difficult.Naqvi said major ticket sellers, including Ticketmaster, have told the government that they already employ technology to combat bots, which has been “fairly successful,” but they lack sufficient resources.As a result, the government plans to give the industry and fans the right to sue those who use bots or facilitate the reselling of those tickets. Once it passed, the law would apply to tickets for events that take place in Ontario, regardless of where the ticket seller and buyer are based, Naqvi said.Naqvi said the law would also make it illegal to sell tickets purchased with bots and to “facilitate” the resale of those tickets, which would affect the two biggest online ticket resellers in Ontario, Ticketmaster and StubHub.Naqvi said both companies are capable of determining when scalpers dump large amounts of tickets, purchased by bots, on their sites for resale.The new law would give those companies more information to work with, by requiring all entities that sell tickets on their sites to disclose basic contact information.“That will be a very strong and blunt tool, because if you then see the same corporation selling a large number of tickets, perhaps even individually, it will be easier for StubHub to identify and look into where those tickets are coming from and why they’re being sold,” he said.Naqvi said capping the markup on tickets will give scalpers less financial incentive to use bots in the first place.The changes are based on public feedback gathered through a survey conducted earlier this year, he said.“Between bots, lack of transparency and unfair prices on resale sites, there is a pervasive sentiment that the system is rigged.”The opposition Progressive Conservatives said price gouging in the ticket resale market is a “mess” of the Liberals’ own making, noting that scalping was illegal in Ontario until the government changed the law in 2015, making it legal for tickets to be sold for more than their face value when the reseller can authenticate the ticket or offer a money-back guarantee.“Their criticism ignores the fact that tickets were already being sold and bought online before 2015,” Naqvi said, adding that the government chose to regulate ticket sales because it could not stop them from taking place online.StubHub said in a statement Monday that it supports legislation prohibiting the use of bots and Ticketmaster did not respond to requests for comment.last_img read more

Albertan takes stand at triple murder trial says friend gunned down his

first_imgRED DEER, Alta. – A central Alberta man accused of killing his parents and sister took the stand in his own defence Tuesday, telling the court that his friend gunned them down during a botched attempt to steal a deer head.Jason Klaus and Josh Frank each face three counts of first-degree murder in the Dec. 8, 2013, deaths of Gordon, Sandra and Monica Klaus.Klaus told court that Frank shot his family after taking the head of a trophy whitetail deal off of the wall of the family’s farmhouse.Frank dropped the deer head on the floor after spooking the family dog and then knocked over their Christmas tree.The bungled theft took a deadly turn when someone approached in the dark.“He shot my sister,” Klaus testified while fighting away tears.“There was another person coming down the hallway with a gun. He shot him. He heard a scream, which was mom, and he shot her. Then he said he had to shoot Monica again, because she wasn’t dead.”Klaus told court that he and Frank were drinking at a bar in nearby Castor, Alta., before the killings took place, and that he was extremely intoxicated.Together they had come up with a plan to commit insurance fraud by having Frank steal a truck from the Klaus’s farmyard.Stealing the deer head was not part of the plan.Klaus said the shootings left him in shock and he was afraid to go to police.“He said if I went to the cops or any of my family members and told them, he was going to include me in the plan of killing the family and taking the deer head,” Klaus testified.“Also, he was going to put a bullet in my head and possibly another family member. He was going to say that I helped him plan this.”Klaus’s testimony about what happened that night is different from the one he and Frank each told undercover Mounties during a Mr. Big sting operation.In 2014 he told RCMP undercover officers that he had helped Frank plan to murder his family, but that it was Frank who pulled the trigger, a story Frank corroborated.Klaus was expected to finish his testimony Wednesday before facing cross-examination.Frank is to take the stand later this week at Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench. (RD News Now)last_img read more

Quebec police chief defends arrest of reporter for alleged harassment

first_imgMONTREAL – A Quebec police chief has defended the decision to arrest a reporter after the subject of a story he was working on lodged a complaint of criminal harassment.Radio-Canada said Friday the complaint against Antoine Trepanier stems from calls and emails he sent seeking reaction to a story about the head of the chapter of Big Brothers Big Sisters in western Quebec.The network said the complainant was Yvonne Dube, who is executive director of the organization’s Gatineau chapter and the subject of the interview requests.Gatineau police Chief Mario Harel held a news conference Friday to defend the process that led to Trepanier’s arrest this week.“It is our duty to respond to an (alleged) victim’s complaint, which we did, and it’s our duty to protect the public,” Harel said. “We have the obligation to listen to the (alleged) victim, take their statement and, with that statement, we assess the situation.“Once we deal with a person suspected of having committed an infraction under the Criminal Code, the first thing we have to do is to give him his rights — the right to keep silent and the right to have a lawyer.”He refused to say whether Trepanier gave police his version of eventsRadio-Canada said it is standing behind Trepanier, whose investigation involved an Ontario court decision that said Dube falsely passed herself off as a lawyer between September 2011 and March 2012.“We find that his arrest was unfounded, that he was only doing his job and that he fully respected the CBC’s journalistic standards and practices,” Yvan Cloutier, Radio-Canada’s director of French services in Gatineau, said in a statement on the network’s website.Trepanier will continue to work as a reporter in the Gatineau newsroom.The CBC’s French-language network said the reporter first contacted Dube on Monday and spoke to her for 20 minutes. It said she initially agreed to an on-camera interview before backing out. The reporter then emailed her again Tuesday to give her another chance for an interview.The complaint was filed later that day and the reporter was called to the police station in the Hull district.Accompanied by two managers, Trepanier was arrested and released on a promise to appear in court June 20.Gatineau police said it would be up to the Crown to decide whether charges would be filed.Trepanier is not permitted to contact Dube and must notify police of any change in address or employment.Stephane Giroux, head of the Quebec journalists’ federation called the arrest “extremely worrying” and noted it was based solely on a single complaint without investigation.By imposing a condition of no contact, the journalist doing his job has in effect been silenced, Giroux said.Canadian Journalists For Free Expression also said it is “gravely concerned” by the decision to arrest Trepanier and called on the Crown to withhold charges given the impact a charge could have on press freedom.The organization said a reporter’s job involves asking difficult questions of community leaders and acting proactively to give the respondent a chance to comment.“The law is intended to protect victims of domestic abuse, stalking or other serious criminal behaviour,” executive director Duncan Pike said in a letter to the Crown.“Using it as a way to discourage or silence speech, advocacy or public interest journalism is deeply troubling.”last_img read more

NAFTA end game Countries now scrambling to conclude a preliminary deal

first_imgWASHINGTON – The NAFTA countries are pushing intensely over the coming days to reach an agreement, Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland suggested Friday as she met her U.S. and Mexican counterparts in Washington.The scope of such a deal is still undetermined.Sources say the countries have yet to decide on whether to settle for a preliminary statement of principles now, and negotiate a final deal later; or seek a more formal agreement immediately, and if necessary to pare back the list of negotiating objectives to achieve that.One thing is clear: the countries are staring at the calendar, see political deadlines approaching, and are working to wrap up some sort of agreement before the task becomes a practical impossibility this year.The countries’ lead political ministers dined together Thursday in Washington, then held a day’s worth of meetings Friday, from which Freeland emerged sounding positive, even referring to a potential end game in the talks.“We’ve entered a new, more intensive stage of engagement,” Freeland told reporters as she exited the U.S. Trade Representative’s office, across from the White House.“That always happens around now in a trade agreement … The pace of progress increases as you get closer to the end.”That intensive engagement is going to continue in the coming days, she said. Freeland was expected to leave Washington later Friday, but officials and ministers are now negotiating frequently by phone.A plethora of incoming political events has added urgency to the process: Mexico’s presidential election campaign, the U.S. legislative midterms, and rules in U.S. law that will soon make it impossible to conclude a ratification vote in Congress this year.One trade insider said there are two realistic possibilities for a quick agreement being weighed.One is to scale back the scope of the talks, and drop a bunch of controversial issues; the other is to present something highly preliminary this spring and keep negotiating the details after July’s Mexican election.That’s because the idea of a full overhaul of a new NAFTA that is not only detailed, but ambitious, and quickly completed, is a fantasy, said trade consultant Eric Miller of the Rideau Potomac Strategy Group.“An agreement-in-principle is anything you want it to be,” he said.“(But) a deal on a fully renegotiated NAFTA by the end of May, as the Trump administration would like, simply will not happen. There just isn’t enough time.”It’s unclear the countries have even discussed, in any detailed way, major sticking points — like dairy, which is a perennial top irritant in Canada-U.S. trade talks and would need to be resolved to have a thorough deal.Autos have been the central issue so far.The Trump administration’s overarching goal is to pull manufacturing jobs back from Asia and Mexico, and in recent weeks it has agreed to modify its most controversial auto proposal.The new U.S. proposal would grant credits to parts-makers that pay wages beyond $15 an hour and help those companies more easily meet the proposed U.S. floor of 85 per cent North American parts for a car to avoid a tariff.It’s an extension of a Canadian proposal from January. Canada first suggested revamping the old formula for calculating regional content, and installing a new system of credits for certain behaviour.Canada’s presentation actually illustrated its argument with a picture to emphasize that the auto industry is rapidly evolving, and needs adaptable new rules to account for changes in materials, fuel sources, and software.The Canadian proposal was presented with an image of the cartoon family The Jetsons, zipping along in their flying car in the year 2062, under the headline: “Rules of origin for the 21st century.”Obtained by The Canadian Press, the proposal included eight elements. Nearly half the plan involves credits to help achieve the 85 per cent via spending on research and development; using steel and aluminum from this continent; and building new plants on the continent.The American suggestion builds on that.The U.S. is proposing to credit companies somewhere between 25 to 35 per cent of the way toward that tariff-free threshold if they pay at least $15-an-hour wages.Sources say Mexico is wary of the proposal and its potential to steer away jobs, but has not shot it down entirely, and is likely insisting on certain conditions that would soften its impact.One industry source said the idea is a no-go if it’s used as a stick — to punish companies that have lower salaries. But he said it could be designed as an incentive, to reward high salaries: “The question is, can you make an effective carrot?”He said details that matter include the length of the phase-in period for the policy to take effect.Upon leaving the talks Friday, Canada’s U.S. ambassador, David MacNaughton, couldn’t say whether an actual deal might be concluded soon, or whether countries were aiming for a more preliminary outline of principles. The current attitude is to achieve whatever can be achieved this spring, he said.“I think we’re trying to get as much done as we possibly can,” MacNaughton said. “We’re continuing to make progress.”last_img read more

1000s of Canadian breast cancer patients will reap reward of nochemo study

first_imgTORONTO – When Lisa Freedman was diagnosed with breast cancer, a genetic test of her tumour suggested chemotherapy would have no effect on the risk of recurrence, allowing her to safely skip the treatment and its dreaded side-effects.“When the test came back, it showed that I would have a 13 per cent chance of recurrence if I had chemo and a 12 per cent chance if I didn’t have chemo,” said the Toronto lawyer, 61.“So that became an easy no-chemo decision,” said Freedman, who has been cancer-free for two years.A recently published U.S.-led study of more than 10,000 women whose tumours were tested determined that most patients with early-stage estrogen-positive breast cancer and no lymph-node spread should be able to avoid chemo and be treated with surgery, radiation and a hormone-blocking drug like tamoxifen alone.The study is the largest ever performed looking at breast cancer treatment, and its results are expected to spare thousands of women in Canada each year from having to undergo rounds of chemotherapy and its harsh side-effects.Funded by the U.S. National Cancer Institute, with additional funding from the Canadian Cancer Society Research Institute, the research looked at women with breast cancer with an intermediate risk of recurrence, based on their scores from the genetic test.Previously, scores from the US$3,000 Oncotype DX test, used since 2004, allowed doctors to sort out women at high risk and low risk of recurrence to determine whether they would benefit from chemotherapy.But women with in-between scores fell into a grey area — should they get chemo or not?That’s what the study, which began in 2006 and included 10,253 women aged 18 to 75, set out to determine, with participants randomized to receive chemo plus a hormone-dampening drug or that medication alone.The results were stunning.After nine years, the findings put the women virtually in a dead heat: more than 90 per cent of those in both groups were still alive, while almost 85 per cent in each were free of recurrence.Researchers concluded that almost 70 per cent of women with this form of breast cancer could safely dodge chemotherapy.“(For) women in-between, where there was some uncertainty, I think this study is very reassuring that for the majority of them we don’t have to give chemotherapy,” said Dr. Andrea Eisen, an oncologist at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto, where 56 patients took part in the multi-centre trial.The results represent an evolution in how this most common form of breast cancer will be treated in the future, agreed Dr. David Cescon, a breast medical oncologist and researcher at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre.“There have been other studies that have contributed, other supportive information along these lines, which have allowed us to avoid chemotherapy, particularly for women in the lower end of this middle-risk group,” he said.“But this will allow us to make those recommendations with more confidence, particularly in the higher end of the middle range for older women.”For Freedman, being told she didn’t need chemo was welcome news, though she admitted that the time from diagnosis to having a surgical lumpectomy and the tumour test moved so quickly, she “never had to go through that whole angst.”Still, she was well aware of the horrors of chemo and had wondered how she would be able to work through the treatment regimen.“I kind of visualized myself lying on the floor in the bathroom throwing up, with my hair falling out and trying to get my strength back,” Freedman said.“So when (the oncologist) said there was absolutely no need for chemo, it was a sigh of relief, almost tears of relief.”Eisen said there has been an ongoing shift over the decades in how breast cancer is treated.“Everybody used to have a mastectomy, then we realized doing a lumpectomy and radiation was essentially just as good,” she said.“And then everybody used to have an ancillary lymph-node dissection, so removal of a lot of lymph nodes under the arm. And then we realized that a smaller operation called a sentinel node biopsy could give in most cases equivalent information.“So now this is the first time we’re really looking at drug treatment … That’s kind of a signal of how good the outcomes are becoming, that we’d look at taking away treatment, rather than giving more.”— Follow @SherylUbelacker on Twitter.last_img read more

John Torys and Jennifer Keesmaats stances on 5 issues in Torontos election

first_imgTORONTO – Toronto goes to the polls Monday to vote for their favourite among three dozen candidates running for mayor. However, polls suggest no candidate poses a major threat to incumbent John Tory. His biggest threat is Jennifer Keesmaat, the city’s former chief planner, who entered the race mid-summer after Premier Doug Ford’s council-cutting decision threw the campaign into chaos.Here are their stances on some of the issues facing Toronto:HousingTory has said if he is re-elected, he plans on building 40,000 affordable rental units over 12 years.He proposed an “affordable housing secretariat” to co-ordinate the city’s activities on the issue, and has suggested introducing affordable housing development plans alongside every major infrastructure project in the city.Keesmaat said she plans to build 100,000 housing units over the next 10 years in an effort to tackle the lack of affordable rentals in Toronto.She has also proposed a rent-to-own program financed by a surcharge on luxury properties that would target Torontonians who are struggling to transition from the rental market. The program would have tenants pay monthly instalments that goes towards a down-payment to eventually purchase the home for a set price.TransitKeesmaat wants the construction of the TTC subway relief line to be built three years earlier than the scheduled completion date of 2031. She has also said that she would make the downtown King Street pilot project, which restricts cars from travelling through a busy stretch of the road, permanent.To address road safety, Keesmaat said she would reduce speed limits to 30 km/h on all residential roads and redesign intersections and school zones.Tory touted his track record on transit and noted that under his leadership, Toronto city council approved the Transit Network Plan, which includes the creation of the relief line — a plan critics say doesn’t go far enough to reduce congestion in the city’s downtown core.CrimeTory has said he will match the Ontario government’s $25 million towards community safety programs in the city. He said he would also create a community safety advisory body.He has proposed a handgun ban. He also said he hired 200 police officers in 2018 and he plans to hire 200 more in 2019.Keesmaat has also said she would ban handguns and ammunition. She said she would address root causes of violence and focus on crime prevention by providing economic opportunities and programming for youth.TaxesIf elected, Keesmaat said in the first 100 days the city would request provincial amendments to property tax legislation to allow for a surtax on homes worth more than $4 million. She said this is to secure a “revenue stream” to fund the rent-to-own program.Tory has proposed keeping property taxes at or below the rate of inflation over the next four years if he were to be re-elected. He said he would also secure funding from the provincial and federal governments to build infrastructure and tackle the city’s “capital backlog” so that the burden is not on property tax payers alone.InfrastructureTory has said he will continue to invest in cycling infrastructure in the city, including bike lanes, but has long come under fire from cycling advocates for doing little during his tenure.Keesmaat has proposed tearing down the eastern portion of the Gardiner Expressway.She said she will also commit to making Toronto greener and more sustainable by expanding green infrastructure projects such as the Queensway Sustainable Sidewalk and implementing a storm water management system.last_img read more

Flush with party funds Manitoba Tories could call early election

first_imgWINNIPEG — Flush with party fundraising cash and facing two opposition parties still in rebuilding mode, Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister is not ruling out a snap election call well in advance of the scheduled date of Oct. 6, 2020.In a year-end interview with The Canadian Press, Pallister would not commit to stick to the date.“Why would I give my opponent that advantage? I’ll just say 2020 is what it’s scheduled for,” Pallister said. “I was in sports too long. I’m not giving away whatever minor advantages I may have. I’m not giving them away.”Pallister hinted the election could be moved up, depending on whether Prime Minister Justin Trudeau changes the federal election set for Oct. 21, 2019. Trudeau recently told The Canadian Press he is sticking firmly with that date.“I’ve seen federal Liberal governments go early … so we’ll just wait and see.”Pallister’s Progressive Conservatives are, by many measures, in a good position to hit the campaign trail. They were elected in 2016 with the biggest majority in Manitoba in a century, and have been raising exponentially more money than the NDP and Liberals, who took more than a year to pay off their campaign debts.The Tories are also facing a more evenly divided opposition that could split the centre-left vote in the next election. The Liberals won a byelection last summer in St. Boniface — a constituency previously held by the former NDP premier — and have enough legislature seats for official party status for the first time in more than 20 years.The Tories should also benefit from changes they made last year to election financing laws. Political contribution limits have been raised and limits on partisan political advertising have been loosened.Under the former rules, parties were limited to what they could spend on advertising throughout an election year. Now, there are limits only on the 90-day period before a fixed election date.And if Pallister decides to go to the polls in 2019, there would only be advertising limits in the campaign period — which can be between 28 and 34 days — because it is not the year of a fixed election date, according to Elections Manitoba.NDP Leader Wab Kinew said his party is gaining steam. Fundraising is increasing, he said, and the party was recently able to boost its advertising plans. The crowd count at the party’s annual fundraising levee in November was the largest since the last election.And while Kinew said there is much more work to do to get ready for the next vote, he feels people are becoming more receptive to the NDP’s opposition to the government’s cuts to front-line services such as health care.“That’s my real focus — to contrast against Pallister and to offer a strong alternative,” Kinew said.While Pallister wouldn’t commit to an election date, he did firmly commit to cutting the provincial sales tax by one percentage point before calling the voters to the ballot box. He campaigned on that promise in 2016. The move will require a vote in the legislature, which would force the opposition parties to either support or oppose it.“Absolutely,” Pallister said firmly when asked whether he will abide by his tax-cut promise. “That I can tell you for sure is happening.”Steve Lambert, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Fire next door to BC pipeline fuel tank facility under control

first_imgBURNABY, B.C. — A fire just a few hundred metres from the Kinder Morgan fuel tank facility in Metro Vancouver has been contained.Burnaby Fire Department’s Deputy Chief Dave Samson says they were called about 8 p.m. Saturday to the blaze burning in a large equipment storage facility used by a demolition business.By the time crews arrived, he says the building was engulfed and they could only pour water on the exterior.Samson says the fire was about 230 metres from the closest fuel tank, although there was is no concern the blaze would spread and no one was hurt.The building is in a property bordering a narrow greenbelt at the edge of the Kinder Morgan facility where 13 huge tanks hold crude oil and refined products awaiting distribution.A woman living directly across the street from the fire described the blaze as “pretty spectacular,” saying sparks from the fire were shooting above the tall trees on the property.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Refugees hoping to become citizens face high bar to achieve language benchmarks

first_imgSURREY, B.C. — Fatum Ibrahim is pointing to her nose and smiling ear-to-ear.“Nose,” she proudly pronounces, eager to demonstrate her expanding English vocabulary.Three years ago, a day shy of Valentine’s Day, 36-year old Ibrahim and seven family members landed in Surrey, B.C., as part of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s signature Syrian Refugee Initiative. She didn’t know a word of English, nor could she read or write in her native Arabic.Despite taking language classes four days a week, she has a long way to go to meet the English-language requirement for Canadian citizenship. While her mom, dad, grandmother and two school-age brothers are eligible to become citizens this year, she and two other adult siblings, who also never learned to read or write, will not be. Without a passport, they are stuck in Canada, unable to visit the six siblings they left behind in Turkey.“I want to be a Canadian. I love it because our country has been destroyed and is gone. Now Canada is our only country. … But I don’t think I will learn to pass the English test until the end of my life,” Ibrahim says through an interpreter.Ibrahim and her two siblings, both of whom live with intellectual disabilities, are not anomalies.Government-assisted Syrian refugees came to Canada with less education than the refugees who came before them. Eighty-one per cent of the first 15,000 government-assisted refugees reported an education level of secondary school or less.While Syria’s average literacy rate — eight in 10 before the war took a toll — is relatively high for the region, there is a sizeable disparity between rates for men and women. Only 77 per cent of Syrian women are literate, compared with 90 per cent of men, with rural women such as Ibrahim faring the worst. It was these women and their families whom the Canadian government prioritized for resettlement.“I went to school only for one year, in the first grade. But I didn’t like it. I wasn’t smart,” Ibrahim says. “None of my sisters finished school; our brothers did. We spent our days cooking, cleaning the house, laughing, playing. We were so happy. … Only here in Canada did I start school again. I was terrified.”Diana Jeffries manages English-language classes for Pacific Immigrant Resources Society, with funding from the federal government’s Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) program. She says adult literacy learners such as Ibrahim are right to wonder whether they will ever qualify for citizenship.To meet the English-language requirement, individuals must reach Level 4 of the Canadian language benchmarks, meaning they can understand simple sentences and use basic grammar. Ibrahim has sat in a Level 1 class for more than a year.“It is impossible. I have never seen someone who is non-literate get past a Level 2 literacy level,” says Jeffries. “You also have to take into account, not only do these women have no literacy skills, they often have tons of anxiety about being in a classroom. They also are women who have a lot of other things going on — often, they lack any sense of agency and have so many other needs with children, caretaking and domestic violence. It can take six months to learn how to print on a line and because it takes a really, really long time, they can give up.”Ibrahim is not giving up yet, having just learned how to hold a pen and write her first name. She and her mom, Shakha, try to make it to their three-hour classes Mondays to Thursdays.But chronic health challenges lead to sporadic attendance. And attendance matters more than ever.Since 2016, LINC programs have adopted a new way of measuring language proficiency. Called the portfolio-based language assessment, it requires students to collect evidence of 32 successfully assessed assignments in order to rise to the next level. Assessments are held in class, so missing a session means missing an opportunity to progress.Julie Ship, the settlement language co-ordinator for British Columbia’s Affiliation of Multicultural Societies and Services Agencies, argues that the portfolio process is not designed for adult literacy learners who face barriers to classroom engagement. There was no feasibility study of how changes to the assessment process might affect refugees with low-to-no literacy in their native tongues.“We are hearing clients are intimidated by the whole process, and if they miss a class, which happens a lot when there are health appointments or they need child minding, they miss out on the assessment,” Ship says. “It is almost too rigorous. The idea was to introduce a steady flow of assessments, but it actually kind of backfires, because talking about assessments all the way through still conveys something scary.”In fact, the portfolio process is so rigorous that it exceeds the government’s language requirement for citizenship. To become a Canadian citizen, refugees aged 18 to 54 who have lived in Canada for three years must demonstrate that they can speak and listen at Level 4. Older refugees such as Ibrahim’s mother, father and grandmother are exempt.The portfolio assessment process gauges skills in four areas: speaking, listening, reading and writing. Although individuals can pay $200 to bypass LINC classes and take an English-language test, they must be able to read and write to use its online interface. That puts refugees with no experience of reading or writing at a disadvantage. Without a Level 4 certificate, these refugees won’t become citizens, with the capacity to vote or freely travel, until they turn 55.Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada responded to a request for comment with a statement that did not address questions about the needs of refugees who are illiterate in their primary language.It says in 2018-19, it is spending about $762 million to support the settlement needs of newcomers across all provinces and territories, excluding Quebec, and it spends more on language training than any other settlement service.“IRCC-funded language training is offered at a range of ability levels from basic literacy to advanced language skills,” it says. “This includes more specialized courses such as labour market language training, which offers job-specific programming, mainly at higher language proficiency levels, coupled with mentoring and work placements to speed up the transition to employment.”In 2008, before the influx of Syrian refugees, Jeffries ran a pilot program specifically for refugees with multiple disadvantages. The program’s funding was not renewed and did not run long enough to compare results with standard programming.“The pre-literacy classes were fantastic, because it was really using different teaching pedagogies that were more experiential and kinesthetic,” Jeffries says. “Reading on a flat surface is not easy, nor is looking at black-and-white text on a piece of paper left to right. We could do art projects that were language-based and that were satisfying. In cooking, they could make measurements. We could paint the alphabet, and just do more creative things. Now, there is nothing like that with portfolio-based language assessment.”Andrea Solnes, an independent consultant in settlement language, has been writing a guidebook on marginalized and multi-barrier learners, based on research with English-as-second-language teachers. Best practice suggests pair work, learning stations, active use of volunteers and paid teaching assistants.“None, that’s how much specific training there is about illiteracy. Teachers are clearly expressing that they would like more,” Solnes says.To improve outcomes for adult literacy learners, both Solnes and Ship see value in an approach that is less focused on meeting standards and more focused on building relationships between refugees and the broader community.“Because language classes are often the first services that newcomers to Canada access, it is such a strong place to work from,” Solnes says.But she says the push for a more standardized assessment structure means students spend less time outside the classroom learning other skills they need to be successful in Canada. “It’s important to not just look at language outcomes, but overall community engagement.”Ibrahim is seeking more community support. She asks whether the interpreter can help her prepare for the language test. While she feels she is making progress in the classroom, it is outside those four walls where she struggles most.“I only understand at school with my teacher,” Ibrahim says. “What is there outside of school to help me learn? I wish there were other classes after my class. We are trying. English is very hard.”— Sarah Schulman, a sociologist and founder of InWithForward, is a fellow in global journalism at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto.Sarah Schulman, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Suspect arrested in shooting that sent transit officer to hospital in Surrey

first_imgSURREY, B.C. — Police say they’ve arrested a man accused of shooting a transit officer in Surrey, B.C., on Wednesday.RCMP began looking for Daon Gordon Glasgow on Thursday.On Sunday morning, they tweeted that he had been arrested without incident, but did not say whether he is facing any charges.Glasgow had been wanted in connection with a shooting on a SkyTrain platform that sent Const. Josh Harms to hospital with serious injuries.Harms was released from hospital that evening and is expected to recover.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

How do airlines fill capacity lost with grounding of 737 Max planes

first_imgVANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – How long will Canada’s fleet of Boeing 737 Max 8s be grounded?That’s the question facing the country’s airlines, which fly more of the aircraft combined than almost any other nation on the planet.At this point, there’s no real time frame for when these planes might be airborne again, with Transport Minister Marc Garneau announcing on Wednesday that the aircraft would not be allowed to fly out of, into, or over the country indefinitely.Air Canada had been flying more than 10,000 passengers a day using it’s 20 or so 737 MAX 8s. The country has 41 of the planes in total on all its airlines.Airline industry analyst Keith Mackey, speaking to NEWS 1130 from Florida, has been asked how airlines can fill the capacity they’ve lost with the grounding of these planes.He says the short answer is: they probably don’t.“They could use under-utilize equipment to make up the slack, they could use larger equipment and combine some of the smaller airplane flights,” he explains.Mackey adds leasing aircraft is also a possibility, but many other global airlines are in the same boat so finding availability is very difficult.“The likelihood of finding any airplanes for lease right now are probably pretty slim,” he adds.If the investigation in to Sunday’s crash in Ethiopia goes quickly, Mackey believes the Boeing 737 MAX 8 and 9 could be back in the air quickly, but that’s no sure thing.“I would have suspected that by now we’d be well-along in the investigation,” he says. “But [Wednesday] the recorders were still in Ethiopia, and there’s no one in Ethiopia that has the skill or the equipment to be able to read them.”The flight and data recorders arrived in France for analysis on Thursday.In the meantime, it likely just means a lot of difficulties for passengers on very crowded airlines.Next stepsIf all goes well, aviation consultant Kit Darby suggests the Boeing 737 MAX 8 could be back in the air quite quickly, but it all depends on what investigators can determine after Sunday’s Ethiopian Airlines crash.“The preliminary information from the latest accident is limited. It appears to be similar [to the Lion Air crash in Malaysia in October 2018] but until we get the data off the data recorder and voice recorder to confirm that these two accidents are related, we don’t even know if we are dealing with the same problem,” Darby tells NEWS 1130.“Then it depends on if it is just a software change — and a lot of things are software-driven these days — and that can happen relatively quickly. If it is a hardware issue and it’s something mechanical that has to be physically changed on the aircraft, then that would take a lot more time.”Darby says the fix could take a few days, a few weeks or, in the worst case scenario, several months.What kind of financial impact will that have on airlines? It depends on how many 737 MAX 8s they fly.“Some carriers that don’t operate this type would actually benefit because they would have all their fleet available, their load factor would go up and they would become more profitable,” he points out.“Overall, on a percentage basis, it’s still relatively small. It’s a new airplane and not pervasive all over the planet like the older models of the 737.”However Darby agrees with Mackey that “it’s in everybody’s interest to get these airplanes back in the air as quickly as possible.”-With files from The Canadian Press and The Associated Presslast_img read more

Montreal says nearly 100 households without apartments on moving day

first_imgMONTREAL — Nearly 100 households are still looking for housing in Montreal as tens of thousands of Quebecers are on the move for the province’s traditional moving day.City Coun. Craig Sauve says that as of Sunday night, 94 households had asked the municipal housing office for help finding new apartments.Of those, some 30 are considered high risk and are being offered emergency shelter services by the city, while the others are being asked to stay temporarily with family or friends.Sauve says the vulnerable families would be offered a place to store their goods until a new home is found, and help to move if necessary.Most residential leases in Quebec begin and end July 1, resulting in a mad scramble that begins months in advance to find new homes and movers.Veronique Laflamme of housing group FRAPRU says the city should have acted sooner, saying housing advocates have been warning for months that rising rents and low vacancy rates would leave low-income families without homes.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Landmark Calgary Tower still closed seven weeks after elevator scare

first_imgThe Canadian Press CALGARY — One of Calgary’s most recognizable landmarks remains closed seven weeks after an elevator with eight people on board plunged several floors.Aspen Properties, owner of the Calgary Tower, says it doesn’t have an update on repairs to the elevator at the popular tourist destination.The agency that governs elevators in Alberta says the elevator is stuck in the same position it was in when it broke in July. The Alberta Elevating Devices and Amusement Ride Safety Association says the car is held up in an area of the elevator shaft that is not easily accessible.Aspen Properties’ website says 300,000 people visit the 190-metre tower each year, paying for tickets, visiting the two restaurants and testing their courage on the glass floor.It took firefighters four hours to rescue the eight people trapped inside the elevator when a cable broke July 12 and the car stopped about 12 storeys up.Rescuers using a harness pulled passengers out of the disabled lift and lowered them to the ground.Patrons in the restaurant at the top of the tower walked down the stairs or were carried by firefighters.No one was injured.The Calgary Tower was built to celebrate Canada’s centennial anniversary in 1967. It was completed in 1968. (CTV Calgary)last_img read more

Animal League Americas Celebrity Gala To Feature Natalie Maines

first_imgNorth Shore Animal League America, the world’s largest no-kill animal rescue and adoption organization, will hold its annual Animal League America Celebrity Gala on Friday, November 22nd at 7 p.m. at the Waldorf Astoria New York.Animal League America Celebrity GalaHighlighting the life-saving efforts of Animal League America, this annual event will also launch Animal League America’s largest life-saving project in history – Bianca’s Furry Friends Adoption & Wellness Center, named in memoriam of Beth & Howard Stern’s beloved Bulldog, Bianca.The Gala will support Animal League America’s ever-expanding no-kill mission with all proceeds from the event dedicated to Bianca’s Furry Friends. This 14,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art Feline Adoption & Wellness Center will enable Animal League America to rescue many more animals by adding a second floor to the existing shelter that will host a cage-free environment for felines, a Feline Behavior Department, Grooming Facilities, Kitten Adoption Playrooms, Feline Medical Exam Rooms and Isolation, Treatment and Recovery Areas.Animal advocate and Rachael’s Rescue founder Rachael Ray will be honored for her life-saving work while host Peter Rosenberg moderates the night, featuring entertaining performances by Dixie Chicks Lead Singer Natalie Maines, Comedian Tom Cotter and America’s Got Talent Sensation Kid the Wiz.For more information about Animal League America’s Celebrity Gala and to purchase tickets, visit www.animalleague.org.last_img read more

American Humane Association Announces StarStudded Lineup For Hero Dog Awards

first_imgWith just a few weeks to go until the fourth annual American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards, American Humane Association – the country’s first national humane organization – is revealing the roster of talent to appear at the star-studded Hollywood event.Co-hosted by football legend Terry Bradshaw and actress and animal advocate Beth Stern, the gala event at the Beverly Hilton on Saturday September 27 will celebrate eight courageous canines, all vying for the coveted title of 2014 American Hero Dog.Pop vocal group Wilson Phillips will be the featured musical entertainment for the evening, performing several well-known hits from their catalogue. The show will be taped by Mersey Masala Productions for a nationwide broadcast on Hallmark Channel on October 30. The producers are Paul Flattery and Irene Crinita and the director is Dennis Rosenblatt.Presented by the Lois Pope LIFE Foundation, the American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards seek to identify and recognize America’s Hero Dogs – ordinary dogs who do extraordinary things, whether it’s saving lives, lending sight or hearing to those in need, or just welcoming us home at the end of a hard day. The evening will also feature the presentation of the first-ever American Humane Association Hero Veterinarian and Hero Veterinary Technician Awards, presented by Zoetis following a nationwide search to find and recognize the achievements of the top veterinary professionals in the country.Stars from the stage and screen will come together to pay tribute to this year’s crop of heroic hounds and their handlers on the other end of the leash. Together, they will walk the red carpet and then attend the gala in the same room where the Golden Globes are filmed each year. Comedic legend and “Saturday Night Live” veteran Martin Short, “America’s Got Talent” winner and Las Vegas entertainer Terry Fator, and “CSI: NY” star Gary Sinise will all contribute special pre-taped segments to the show.Featured presenters for the evening include “America’s Veterinarian” Dr. Marty Becker, Oscar-winner Marlee Matlin, world-renowned dog trainer Victoria Stilwell, “NCIS” star Pauley Perrette, television and movie star Billy Baldwin, “Desperate Housewives” star James Denton, “Nashville” star Charlotte Ross, and more to be announced soon. As the television broadcast partner for the show, Hallmark Channel has enlisted many of its own stars to also appear at the Hero Dog Awards as presenters, including Larry Miller, Lori Loughlin, Lacey Chabert, Mark Steines, Cristina Ferrare, Bailee Madison, Barbara Niven, and Kellie Martin. Reality television star Lisa Vanderpump and her famous Pomeranian Giggy will also do a special live auction during the show.The 2014 American Hero Dog will be determined by the public and a panel of select special celebrity judges, including country superstar Naomi Judd, philanthropists and animal advocates Philippe and Ashlan Gorse Cousteau, “The Bachelor” Prince Lorenzo Borghese, “True Blood” star Kristin Bauer van Straten, actress Christie Brooke, “Tough Love Miami” star Leilani Dowding, “Saving Mr. Banks” actress Victoria Summer, actress and animal advocate Alison Eastwood, actress Emmanuelle Vaugier, supermodel Joanna Krupa, NASCAR driver Blake Koch, actor Lou Wegner, singer Shara Strand, Hollywood talent manager Joanne Horowitz, businesswoman and philanthropist Paige Dunham, and 2011’s Law Enforcement/Arson Dog Category winner Sadie and Jerry Means, along with Lisa Vanderpump, Victoria Stilwell, and Bailee Madison.“We have such an incredible roster of talent set to appear at the 2014 American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards,” said Dr. Robin Ganzert, American Humane Association’s president and CEO. “But of course, the brightest shining stars in attendance that evening will be our eight amazing Hero Dogs and their courageous handlers. It’s going to be an incredible evening, and I can’t wait to see who America has chosen as its 2014 American Hero Dog.”For ticket information for the 2014 American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards, please call 202-841-6080 or email jilln@americanhumane.org.last_img read more

CMF ANNOUNCES 45M INVESTMENT IN NINE DIGITAL MEDIA PROJECTS

first_imgAdvertisement Advertisement Funding through the Commercial Projects Pilot Program is designed to support Canadian interactive, innovative and leading-edge digital media content and software applications which have an increased emphasis on commercial success.To access a list of new projects that received production support as part of the Commercial Projects Pilot Program, click here.About the Canada Media FundThe Canada Media Fund (CMF) fosters, develops, finances and promotes the production of Canadian content and applications for all audiovisual media platforms. The CMF guides Canadian content towards a competitive global environment by fostering industry innovation, rewarding success, enabling a diversity of voice and promoting access to content through public and private sector partnerships. The CMF receives financial contributions from the Government of Canada and Canada’s cable, satellite and IPTV distributors. Please visit cmf-fmc.ca. Toronto, December 13, 2017 – The Canada Media Fund (CMF) announced today a $4.5M investment for the production of nine innovative digital media projects that applied for funding to the Experimental Stream Commercial Projects Pilot Program.Of the projects receiving an investment as part of this program seven are Games and two are Rich Interactive Media. Of the companies developing these projects Alberta and British Columbia each have one, while four are based in Ontario and three in Québec.The Experimental Stream encourages the creation of innovative, interactive digital media content and software applications. Including this latest round of funding, the CMF has invested $191M in the production of 337 interactive digital media projects since the Experimental Stream was created in 2010. Facebook LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Login/Register With: Twitterlast_img read more

Werewolf wins big at Toronto Film Critics award

first_imgWerewolf, a film about a Cape Breton couple suffering from homelessness and methadone addiction, won the grand prize at this year’s Toronto Film Critics Association awards gala.Filmmaker Ashley McKenzie accepted the $100,000 prize for the Rogers Best Canadian Film Award at The Carlu restaurant in downtown Toronto on Tuesday evening.“With Werewolf, a raw, yet tender portrait of a couple in methadone recovery, Ashley McKenzie casts fresh light on a pressing issue,” said Phil Lind, vice-chair of Rogers Communications — which sponsors the awards — in a statement issued Tuesday. Advertisement Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Login/Register With: Facebookcenter_img McKenzie’s first feature film follows Blaise and Vanessa as they eke out a living mowing lawns and surviving outdoors.Other nominees included Hello Destroyer, about a hockey “enforcer” coming to terms with the aggression of his minor-league hockey team, and Wexford Plaza, which follows an unexpected relationship between a strip-mall security guard and makeup salesman. Advertisement “Werewolf,” a film about a couple battling methadone addiction, won the Toronto Film Critics Association’s top award Tuesday night. (TIFF) Twitterlast_img read more

GLOBAL NEWS MORNING CALGARY LAUNCHES NEW TEAM WITH A NEW FORMAT

first_imgAdvertisement CALGARY, Canada – Global Calgary is reinventing morning news by launching a companion online digital format, bringing a multi-platform approach to the news, weather, and traffic information Calgarians need to start their day. Starting Monday, June 11, Global News Morning Calgary will feature content specifically designed for digital audiences on social media platforms to create more interaction and engagement with Calgary’s number one morning news broadcast.*“Global News Morning has a long history of innovation and creativity to ensure our audience is up to date with the stories that matter most to Calgarians,” said Kenton Boston, Vice-President, News and Information, Western Canada for Corus Entertainment. “Now, we are going to give you that experience online as well so our digital audience can continue to grow with Global News.”Joining the team to drive this innovative format is Global Calgary’s newest digital journalist, Matthew Conrod, who will be the online Social Host of the program. Conrod previously worked in Toronto as a host and live reporter for the AHL’s Toronto Marlies, and worked on radio and television programs at Rogers Sportsnet. Conrod will ensure linear television audiences stay up to date with information curated from the digital space, while reporting the daily news on the station’s Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook platforms. Global News Morning Calgary’s new four-person team will also see the expansion of roles for some familiar favourites. Dallas Flexhaug brings her local experience and exceptional news sense into the anchor position full-time, with meteorologist Jordan Witzel taking on new duties as co-anchor, conducting interviews with notable Calgarians and celebrities. Leslie Horton will expand her role to ensure important community events are featured across platforms while evolving her market-leading coverage of the traffic stories that impact viewers each morning.To celebrate the new show as well as the kick-off of the Calgary Stampeders season, viewers are invited to tune in to the new show on Monday, June 11 and Monday, June 25 for a chance to cheer on the Stampeders in a suite hosted by the Global News Morning team.Global Calgary has been part of the Calgary marketplace for more than 60 years, and was recently awarded Best TV Newscast (Large Market) by Canada’s Radio Television Digital News Association. Global News Morning Calgary continues to air weekdays at 5 a.m. MT.*Source: Numeris PPM Canada, Jan 1-May 13, 2018 Edmonton/Calgary EMA.SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS:Twitter: @CorusPR, @GlobalCalgaryFacebook: Facebook.com/GlobalCalgaryInstagram: @globalcalgaryGlobal Calgary is a Corus Entertainment Network.Corus EntertainmentCorus Entertainment Inc. (TSX: CJR.B) is a leading media and content company that creates and delivers high quality brands and content across platforms for audiences around the world. The company’s portfolio of multimedia offerings encompasses 44 specialty television services, 39 radio stations, 15 conventional television stations, a global content business, digital assets, live events, children’s book publishing, animation software, technology and media services. Corus’ roster of premium brands includes Global Television, W Network, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network Canada, HGTV Canada, Food Network Canada, HISTORY®, Showcase, National Geographic, Q107, CKNW, Fresh Radio, Disney Channel Canada, YTV and Nickelodeon Canada. Visit Corus at www.corusent.com. Login/Register With: Advertisement Advertisement Facebook Twitter LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment last_img read more

ETOBICOKE PERFORMER BROOKE LYNN HYTES BECOMES FIRST CANADIAN ON RUPAULS DRAG RACE

first_imgHytes is the drag queen persona of Etobicoke, Ont.-raised performer Brock Hayhoe, who began as a ballet student before gravitating to drag at Toronto bars and nightclubs.Canadian fans of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” have long griped that a homegrown performer hadn’t appeared on the series, despite a vibrant array of acts to choose from across the country. Part of the challenge was getting a visa to work in the United States.“I’ve been watching the show since the very beginning and it’s something I never thought I’d be able to do because I’m Canadian,” Hayhoe said in the unveiling on YouTube.“I have to be legal to work here, and I made it happen. I make stuff happen, what can I say?”The winner of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” takes home a prize of US$100,000 and sets forth on a whirlwind of global appearances at various events that firmly establishes their name in the drag community.Hayhoe studied at the National Ballet School in Toronto before heading stateside to pursue a drag performance career in New York.In the years that followed he bounced between Canada and the U.S., eventually landing in Nashville after he won the 2014 Miss Continental pageant with a ballet performance of Britney Spears’ “I’m a Slave 4 U.”Hayhoe also dances with Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo, an all-male drag ballet company.The premiere date of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” season 11 on OutTV will be announced soon.THE CANADIAN PRESS Advertisement Drag queen performer Brooke Lynn Hytes is shown in this undated handout photo. Hytes is filling some tall shoes as the first Canadian competitor in the history of “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” The popular reality TV series revealed the line-up of contestants for its 11th season in a live YouTube announcement. Hytes is the drag queen persona of Etobicoke, Ont.-raised performer Brock Hayhoe, who began as a ballet student before gravitating to drag at Toronto bars and nightclubs. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO – VH1, OutTV Advertisement Advertisement TORONTO — Drag queen performer Brooke Lynn Hytes is filling some tall shoes as the first Canadian competitor to be featured on “RuPaul’s Drag Race.”The popular reality TV series revealed the lineup of 15 contestants for its 11th season in a live YouTube announcement.center_img Facebook LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Twitter Login/Register With:last_img read more

PRODUCTION BEGINS IN TORONTO ON THE MARIJUANA CHRONICLES BASED ON A TRUE

first_img LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Director and Writer Craig Pryce says: “After discovering Diana’s fascinating research on the bizarre and unethical experiments studying the effects of marijuana on females in Toronto 1972, I knew it would make for a fascinating movie. I’m very excited to tell this true story that focuses on five young women and how they used their unique strengths, resilience and friendship to overcome adversity despite several agendas imposed on them during their days in virtual captivity.”“The Marijuana Chronicles” features an all Canadian female leading cast including Julia Stone (Weirdos, Wet Bum, The Killing, Everything will be Fine), Morgan Kohan (Ransom, Star Trek Discovery, Kim’s Convenience), Tymika Tafari (Murdoch Mysteries), Brittany Bristow (Royal Matchmaker, Wildlife Quest, Shadowtown), and Kyla Young (Alias Grace). Luke Bilyk (Degrassi, Kiss & Cry) and Greg Calderone (Heroes Reborn, Saving Hope) will also play in the film.PUBLICIST:  TARO PR Login/Register With: Principal Photography has officially commenced in Toronto for “The Marijuana Chronicles,” written and directed by Craig Pryce (Hallmark’s Good Witch, PSI Factor, Goosebumps, HBO’s The Dark, Zack Files, Life with Derek).Pryce received four Directors Guild nominations and two Gemini nominations and directed episodes of “Dark Oracle”, a series that won an International Emmy.“The Marijuana Chronicles” is based on a true story that took place in 1972 over 98 days. It studies the scientific, social and physical effects of Marijuana use during an all-female group study. Pryce optioned this story from investigative reporter, Diana Zionislic who acts story consultant. Facebook Advertisement Advertisement Advertisement Twitterlast_img read more

Expert advising NB on shale gas lied about credentials

first_imgAPTN National NewsRevelations a professor lied about his credentials are reverberating across the East.Louis Lapierre has a long history in academia. He was recently the head of New Brunswick’s Energy Institute which was supposed to advise the province on shale gas.APTN’s Ossie Michelin has just returned from the province and brings us more.last_img

A Nunavut mother on life after daughters suicide

first_imgAPTN National NewsWhen we look at Nunavut’s suicide epidemic, we usually look at it from the outside and the tragic amount of people who kill themselves in Canada’s newest territory.This time, APTN sat down with a Nunavut woman who has survived the loss of a daughter to one of Nunavut’s biggest problems.APTN’s Kent Driscoll has this story.last_img

Liberals accused of blocking committee from calling PCO to testify about MMIWG

first_imgNation to NationFederal opposition MPs say Liberal members on the Indigenous Affairs committee are blocking them from calling staff from the Privy Council Office (PCO) to testify on how it is handling administrative and financial requests from the National Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.“We had the interim report,” Conservative MP Cathy McLeod told Nation to Nation host Todd Lamirande. “My colleague (Arnold Viersen) said we need to get the PCO here to explain what is happening and perhaps inquire a little more into it and certainly whenever he brings it up… he gets shut down.“That is the job of a committee to look at what’s happening.”The inquiry’s interim report outlined 10 issues that it considered “significant challenges” to operating smoothly – two involved the PCO.“On average it takes four months to hire new staff,” said the interim report. “We must also follow Privy Council Office’s (PCO) requirement for security clearances. As a result, once the National Inquiry has decided to hire someone, it takes an average of five weeks for the security process to be complete before the National Inquiry can make a formal offer.“This has seriously obstructed our ability to do our work in a timely way.”Another concern is the situation with setting up offices. In some locations, it took months of red tape to get office space rented and furnished, including computers.“Federal government procurement and contracting policies resulted in up to eight months’ delay before offices could be opened,” the commissioners wrote in the report. “Even then, offices opened without proper telephone, internet, and office equipment.”NDP MP Sheila Malcolmson told Nation to Nation that the commissioners were hired to do the work of listening to families – and said none of them thought they were going to have to be information technology experts.“We don’t want to undermine the commissioners,” Malcolmson said. “But we want the government to keep its promise to make the inquiry as well as it can.”According to Malcolmson and Mcleod, the Liberals on the committee have voted to defer the matter ever since.Liberal Don Rusnak, who is the parliamentary secretary for the minister of Indigenous Services, and a non-voting member of the committee, said the issue isn’t closed.“The committee is a master of its own destiny,” he said. “But I think (the vote) is coming up shortly.”Neither member of the opposition was buying that.“It’s pretty quick and easy to say ‘yes, let’s do a quick vote.’ We need to get the PCO here for a meeting,” said McLeod. “To talk about what’s going on so to say that they haven’t voted yet and keep voting to defer it is a little disingenuous.”Malcolmson said the Liberals on the committee are taking the matter one step further.“I was on the Indigenous Affairs committee this week – I was fairly stunned actually how fast the Liberal majority on committee said ‘no, we closed debate we don’t even want to discuss this’ then they tried to go in-camera, no justification to go in-camera, to talk about the role of the Privy Council Office administering funds for the inquiry,” she said.“What do they have to hide? I’ve never seen another committee be so protective of this parliamentary bureaucracy.”The PCO is a non-partisan wing of government bureaucracy and is located in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) across from Parliament Hill.It gives advice to cabinet and logistical support to departments for matters such as inquiries.It’s not out of the ordinary to have its staff called to testify at a committee.In June, a number of bureaucrats from PCO testified before the Public Accounts committee on a number of issues including the MMIWG inquiry.Kami Ramcharan, assistant deputy minister of corporate services at the PCO told members of the committee that her office provides all the financial, human resources and procurement to ensure the money the inquiry spends follows the rules.Ramcharan said the PCO has two dedicated people within the department who do nothing else but process procurement requests, or payment requests for the inquiry.“We’ve had enough resources within the PCO budget to be able to pay for expenditures related to the commission up to this point so they have not been without resources available for what they would need in terms of doing it,” she said.“Have they had full access? Absolutely.”But there have also been concerns from families, and the inquiry, about people being paid out for travel, and other expenses.Ramcharan said the PCO has guidelines to follow – and paperwork needs to be done.“In terms of examples related to payments not being made on time, I know there have been some challenges,” she said. “We won’t just say someone’s going to go and travel, and they’ve spent $100. We actually need to see the authority for that spending to happen, we need to see the receipts associated, and we have to have all of those checks and balances in place before we can issue the money.“There have been challenges from the people who, say, travel for the advisory committee meetings, for the hearings, to get their information in together, to get it signed off through the commission structure into PCO for us to then turn it around.”Maryann Mihychuk, chair of the committee, did not respond to APTN’s request for comment.Crown Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett and Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott will go before the committee Nov. 30.N2N’s political panel discussed Justice Minister Jody Wilson Raybould’s announcement.She announced her government’s support of Bill C-262.It’s a private member’s bill sponsored by NDP MP Romeo Saganash.It seeks to have the UN’s Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People fully implemented by the Canadian government.last_img read more

Agreementinprinciple released for 60s Scoop settlement

first_imgJohn MurrayAPTN InvestigatesThe firm contracted to manage the applications and settlement for the ’60s Scoop lawsuit has released the agreement-in-principle for the settlement.There are between 20,000 to 200,000 potential survivors that may be eligible.They can now participate in developing the final details of the agreement which the federal government has capped at $750 million.The agreement-in-principle still doesn’t include Metis and non-status adoptees.jmurray@aptn.calast_img

Freshii seeks to reassure investors after cutting guidance for growth

first_imgMONTREAL – The chairman and chief executive of Freshii sought to reassure investors about the restaurant chain’s growth after it said earlier this week that it would open fewer locations than expected.Speaking to an investor conference in Montreal, Matthew Corrin said Wednesday the company could have started a process to terminate its contracts with large franchisees who failed to meet the store opening commitments in their contracts.However, he says Freshii opted against doing that because the franchisees are doing the right things and the value in the long term is greater if the company continues to support their development.Corrin says it hurts to miss a store opening, but in his opinion it would be a too short-term view to penalize a franchisee.“If you recognize the true value is supporting and seeing them through to building their scale and then collecting a royalty in perpetuity, the value creation of that royalty is much greater than the one-time upfront fee that we got at the start of the relationship,” he said.Freshii (TSX:FRII) shares fell 35 per cent on Tuesday after the company lowered its guidance for new store openings and scaled back its longer-term expansion targets.The company attributed the reduction to the closure of its locations in Target stores, challenges in ramping up the number of locations and a more conservative pace of store openings by its multi-unit franchisees than expected.Corrin said multi-unit franchisees are looking to roll out several restaurants at the same time as part of a larger plan.“Instead of looking at five sites and selecting three of them, they will literally look at 50 locations and narrow it down. Just the exercise of doing that extra level of diligence on 50 sites versus three, adds a layer of time,” he said.In its revised outlook, Freshii said it expects between 90 and 95 net new store openings in its 2017 financial year, down from 150 to 160 locations.The company also lowered its longer-term expansion targets and now plans to open between 730 and 760 stores by the end of its 2019 financial year, rather than the 810 to 840 stores previously anticipated.last_img read more

US boycott gains strength as Canada readies tariffs on 166 billion in

first_imgA consumer boycott of American-made products and services is gathering steam as Canada counts down to this weekend’s imposition of retaliatory tariffs on $16.6 billion worth of American products.Popular hashtags on social media include #BuyCanadian and #BoycottUSA, as consumers express their dislike of U.S. President Donald Trump’s imposition of tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum as of June 1 and threatened levies on Canada-made vehicles.“I really don’t like Trump, that’s what it stems from,” said Beth Mouratidis, a 54-year-old from Barrie, Ont., who said she has been avoiding buying American products for about a year and posting her findings on Facebook, along with shared tips and information from her friends.She said the trade war is costing Canadian and American jobs and she wants to help stop that by buying products like Chapman’s ice cream, which her research shows is proudly Canadian-made.“It takes a lot more time because you’re reading all the labels,” she said. “The sad thing is, even if you read all the labels … you still don’t know 100 per cent.”One consumer posting with the #BuyCanadian hashtag on Twitter said snack fans should buy only Old Dutch potato chips, pointing out the finicky family cat will only eat the Canadian-made product.Others call for buying French’s ketchup instead of Kraft Heinz due to French’s use of Canadian tomatoes, whereas Kraft Heinz Canada closed its Leamington, Ont., works in 2015 in favour of U.S. production.The ketchup boycott has been noticed by Kraft Heinz, legal affairs vice-president Av Maharaj said Thursday in an interview.“While it is true we did move Heinz ketchup to Ohio, three-quarters of the volume from the Leamington plant is still there,” he said, adding the company is still a major manufacturer of food and beverages in Canada.He wouldn’t say if Kraft Heinz plans to launch a Made-in-Canada advertising campaign to present its side of the story.On Thursday, Unifor, Canada’s largest private sector union introduced its “I Shop Canada” national social media campaign, urging consumers to support Canadian jobs by buying and promoting local products and services.“U.S. trade attacks on Canada are a clear and present threat to our national economy,” said Unifor national president Jerry Dias in a statement.“I firmly believe that if aware and given the choice, consumers will gladly support Canadian brands and services and the jobs behind them.”The campaign urges consumers, workers and companies to share information and images about made-in-Canada goods and services on Twitter using the #IShopCanada hashtag and @IShopCA tag. On Facebook, it is offering an I Shop Canada frame for profile pictures.An online poll conducted by Abacus Data in the first week of June found that more than half of 2,200 Canadians surveyed said they intend to avoid buying U.S. wines and cross-border shopping.The polling industry’s professional body, the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association, says online surveys cannot be assigned a margin of error as they are not a random sample and therefore are not necessarily representative of the whole population.Mouratidis, who has a part-time job handing out samples in liquor stores, said the boycott campaign is winning followers.“I did a product tasting that was American on the weekend and I had one person outright refuse to take a sample,” she laughed.“He didn’t even want to taste it because it was American. Wow, that’s even more than me. I would have tasted it.”With a file from Tara Deschamps in Toronto.Follow @HealingSlowly on Twitter.last_img read more

Brothers acquire Harveyswamped exmuseum site in Galveston

first_imgGALVESTON, Texas — A Galveston building that housed a vintage military aircraft flight museum and was swamped in 2008 during Hurricane Ike has been sold.The Galveston County Daily News reports brothers Billy, John and Todd Sullivan purchased the 100,000-square-foot building formerly home to the Lone Star Flight Museum. Terms weren’t released.Water inundated the museum when Ike came ashore in Galveston in September 2008. The Lone Star Flight Museum has relocated to Houston to avoid the threat of more hurricanes, such as Harvey in 2017.The Sullivans will lease the city-owned land from Scholes International Airport. The brothers assumed the museum’s remaining lease of 31 years, with monthly payments of about $1,500.Billy Sullivan says the brothers will likely use the building for hangar space or possibly a flight school.___Information from: The Galveston County Daily News, http://www.galvnews.comThe Associated Presslast_img read more

Building Trades executive director says BC needs more apprentices on major projects

first_imgHe said that by having apprentices comprise 25 percent of the workforce on large-scale projects, it will help ensure that those apprentices become Red Seal-certified tradespeople that will be able to work anywhere across Canada. Sigurdson has in the past criticized the lack of apprentices working on the Site C project. According to BC Hydro’s statistics, the apprentice population working on Site C peaked last July, when there were 62 apprentices out of a total contractor workforce of 2,145. That works out to just 2.8 percent of contractors. The number of apprentices working on Site C fell to its lowest level in December 2017 and January 2018, when the total was just eight. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — The value of having more apprentices working on large-scale construction projects were the main topics of a speech by BC Buildings Trades Council executive director Tom Sigurdson at a Chamber of Commerce luncheon on Tuesday.Sigurdson, whose organization represents a number of construction trade unions including those representing bricklayers; plumbers, plasterers; millwrights; and ironworkers among many others, spoke about the need for community benefit agreements to be implemented on all large public projects in B.C. In his presentation, he explained that those agreements will help alleviate a skilled labour shortage that the province will be facing over the next decade.Sigurdson said that though a number of large infrastructure projects are either planned or already underway in B.C., forecasts show that there will be roughly 7,600 less skilled trades workers in the province. He cited Royal City Record news article from several years ago, which said that one in eight high school students would need to follow a career path in the construction industry.last_img read more

North Peace Secondary School closed due to electrical issue

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – North Peace Secondary School will be closed on Tuesday.School District 60 announced the school will be closed on February 12, 2019, due to a burst pipe that has caused electrical issues in the building.  The ELC at the Pomeroy Sport Centre will remain open.The District says an update on the status of the school will be released during the day on Tuesday. For more updates, watch this website or visit the School Districts website at prn.bc.calast_img

Northern Development Initiative Trust to fund 250000 towards North Peace Cultural Centre

first_imgPRINCE GEORGE, B.C. – The Northern Development Initiative Trust has approved nearly $1 million in funding for economic initiatives in Northern B.C.The approved funding will go towards four major projects in its service region that will support and strengthen the local economy through the Economic Diversification Infrastructure Program.In Fort St. John, the North Peace Cultural Centre has been approved for $250,000 to help cover renovation costs to its theatre. The Centre’s upgrades will include the replacement of all 413 seats, new carpet, new stage drapery and the replacement of the lighting systems.North Peace Cultural Society Executive Director, Baptiste Marcere, says the upgrades will improve the quality of performances and the overall safety of the theatre.“The NPCC theatre is the performance hub of the North Peace attracting thousands of people to hundreds of performances each year. These will mean better performances in the theatre for both local and touring productions. Safety is of prime consideration and now, broken seats and carpet fringe will no longer be an issue.”The Economic Diversification Infrastructure program provides grant funding to support major infrastructure projects in order to strengthen the local economy.last_img read more

School District 60 to move forward with proposed lane closure at Bert Bowes Middle School

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – At a special School District 60 board meeting on Monday, School Trustees reviewed the proposed lane closure at Bert Bowes Middle School.Earlier this year, the City of Fort St. John initiated a lane closure that would allow the School District to amalgamate their parcels in this area.In 1972, the City and School District 60 completed a number of road and lane closures in the 9900 block between 108 and 102 streets. According to the City, this lane, which is an internal road for Bert Bowes and the District’s maintenance yard, was inadvertently missed.Since the proposal has been reviewed, Trustees have voted to sign for consent and will now move forward with the lane closure to amalgamate this parcel of land.last_img read more

Muzaffarpur shelter case: ED attaches assets worth Rs 7.3 cr

first_imgNew Delhi: The ED on Wednesday said it has attached assets worth Rs 7.30 crore, including 23 plots and three vehicles, belonging to Brajesh Thakur, the main accused in Bihar’s Muzzafarpur shelter home case where minor inmate girls were allegedly raped and sexually assaulted.The agency said it has issued a provisional order under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) for the attachment of assets of Thakur, the owner of the centre and the NGO, Sewa Sankalp Evam Vikas Samiti, that ran it. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity!”Immovable and movable properties consisting of 26 plots of land, three vehicles, bank balance in 37 accounts and investments in mutual funds and insurance policies, totalling to Rs 7.30 crore, have been attached. These assets belong to accused Brajesh Thakur and his family,” the Enforcement Directorate (ED) said. The ED had filed a PMLA case in this context in October last year. The alleged sexual exploitation of the girls was first highlighted in an audit report submitted by the Tata Institute of Social Science (TISS), Mumbai, to the state’s Social Welfare Department in April, 2018. An FIR was lodged in May 2018 against 11 people, including Thakur, the owner of the NGO which ran the government-funded shelter home for destitute girls. The probe was later taken over by the CBI. In all, the sexual abuse of 34 inmates out of 42 was confirmed in their medical examination.last_img read more

IAF’s MiG 27 aircraft crashes near Jodhpur

first_imgJodhpur: A MiG 27 aircraft of the Indian Air Force crashed on Sunday near Jodhpur in Rajasthan but the pilot ejected safely, official sources said. The MiG 27 UPG jet took off from Utarlai airforce base and the jet experienced engine problems leading to the crash at around 11:45 AM in Sirohi district about 120 km south of Jodhpur, they said, adding that the pilot ejected safely. The sources said a court of inquiry has been ordered to investigate the cause of the accident. Preliminary reports indicate no loss of life and property on ground. The jet was on a routine mission, they said. The fighter aircraft crashed in Shivganj police station area near Godana dam in Sirohi district. Police and administrative officials have reached the spot to cordon off the area, Sirohi district SP, Kalyan Mal Meena, said.last_img read more

Cong fields Kamal Nath’s son Nakul from Chhindwara Lok Sabha seat

first_imgNew Delhi: The Congress on Thursday fielded Kamal Nath’s son Nakul Nath from the Chhindwara Lok Sabha constituency — that has been a bastion of the Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister for decades.Nakul Nath is the second in the list of sons of chief ministers making their foray into politics in the Congress, after the party fielded Vaibhav Gehlot from Jodhpur Lok Sabha seat in Rajasthan. He is the son of Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot. Sons of many former chief ministers in the Congress have already made their entry into politics. These include former Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda’s son Deepinder Singh Hooda, former Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi’s son Gaurav Gogoi, former Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh’s son Vikramaditya Singh, former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Digvijaya Singh’s son Jayawardhan Singh and former Karnataka Chief Minister Mallikarjun Khrge’s son Priyank Kharge. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’The party also announced that Kamal Nath will contest the bypoll for the Chhindwara Assembly constituency. The bypoll has been necessitated as the Congress lawmaker from there vacated the seat for Kamal Nath to get elected to the Assembly as he had not contested the December polls. A total of 12 Lok Sabha candidates were declared by the Congress for Madhya Pradesh on Thursday, including Nakul Nath from Chhindwara, Congress Working Committee member Arun Yadav from Khandwa, and Vivek Tankha from Jabalpur. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KFormer Leader of Opposition Ajay Singh, who had lost the Assembly election from Churhat last year, has been fielded from Sidhi Lok Sabha seat. Nakul Nath will be hoping to succeed to his father who has represented Chhindwara in the Lok Sabha nine times. With this list, the Congress has so far announced candidates for 21 out of 29 Lok Sabha seats in Madhya Pradesh. The total number of Lok Sabha seats on which the Congress has declared its candidates is 369. Earlier in the day, the Congress announced the names of two candidates for Lok Sabha polls in Gujarat. The party has fielded Sher Khan Abdul Shakur Pathan from Bharuch and Babubhai Katara from Dahod (ST). The announcement comes days after the Gujarat Congress unit requested senior party leader Ahmed Patel to contest the Lok Sabha poll from Bharuch. Patel, currently a Rajya Sabha member, won from Bharuch thrice, in 1977, 1980 and 1984, but lost to BJP’s Chandubhai Deshmukh in 1991, after which he did not contest from the seat.last_img read more

Hyundai to train 10,000 sales consultants for its global connected tech

first_imgNew Delhi: Hyundai Motor India Tuesday said it is training a team of over 10,000 professionals for its global connected technology that is all set to debut in its upcoming compact SUV Venue. The auto major will introduce its global technology BlueLink in the Indian market with the launch of the compact SUV which is set to hit roads in May this year. The company is training 615 ‘Blue Link Wizards’ who in turn would train over 10,000 sales consultants across its sales network across the country. “Our team of Blue Link Wizards and trained sales consultants will make the technology truly accessible to all our customers,” Hyundai Motor India Senior General Manager Marketing Puneet Anand told reporters here. The trained consultants will also visit the home of Venue buyers for feature explanation and education, he added.last_img read more

Zoya, Reema and Nitya on obsession with box office

first_imgMumbai: When four filmmakers Zoya Akhtar, Reema Kagti, Alankrita Shrivastava and Nitya Mehra came together to make their latest web series, it “liberated” them from the trappings of box office, something which they find inane. In an interview, the filmmakers behind ‘Made In Heaven’, who, in their personal career, have had their share of hits and misses, said that growing obsession of quoting box office figures is not healthy. For Reema, who has helmed films like Talaash and Gold, there is no correlation between the films business and the number people who like it. Zoya, fresh from the success of Gully Boy, said the trade figures of a film should ideally matter to only those involved. “You can’t deny that, because of Twitter and other social media everyone throws up numbers. It has become a great deal because of it,” said director Alankrita.last_img read more

Usain Bolt beats a bus in a race in Argentina

first_imgRabat – During his second day in Buenos Aires, Usain Bolt, the Jamaican world record holder in 100 and 200 meters, easily won a race against a bus in a free exhibition held on the famous 9 de Julio Avenue, downtown Buenos Aires, according to Spanish sport newspaper Marca.In a promoted race held opposite the famous Teatro Colón, the athlete who holds six Olympic gold medals and eight world championships, attracted more than 30,000 people. In his challenge to overcome the 59 bus, the Jamaican showed all his magnetism and freshness to run 80 meters in a light trot that was enough to keep the duel.After this presentation, Usain Bolt won a 120 meters race against his countrymen Mario Forsythe, Kimmari Roach, and Daniel Bailey of Antigua and Barbuda.  “What I like is running in front the crowds and although it costs because it is done in less than optimal conditions, it is a great morale boost,” was the final sentence of the world’s fastest man who appeared on a warm day in the capital Buenos Aires.The 27-year old athlete said that his next challenges will be Olympic titles in the Rio 2016 Olympics and to achieve a new world title in the 100 meters.last_img read more

Tunisia: An International March Against Terrorism

Tunis – Foreign heads of states, members of parliament, party leaders, and representatives of organizations took part in the international march against terrorism on Sunday, March 29, at the Bardo Museum, Tunis. At the same time, tens of thousands of citizens, mostly young people, participated in a second march at Bab Saadoun, near the city center, to denounce terrorism.In the different cities in Tunisia, young Tunisians working for NGOs organized workshops and cultural activities as part of the fight against terrorism, especially during the World Social Forum (WSF), which was held from March 24 to 28. “I came to the march because I am Tunisian. Facts have demonstrated again at the WSF that young people are a big power. Young people are already mobilized against terrorism. We must now organize and supervise this mobilization. We have just received proposals for the organization of a young Congress against terrorism,” said Chokri Terzi, Tunisian Secretary of State for Youth, in Habib Essid Government.The “Mitterrand” slip Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi misspoke during his speech in the great hall of the Bardo Museum, after the inauguration of the monument commemorating the victims of Bardo attack on Sunday. Addressing his French counterpart, Francois Hollande, he said “Mr. President of the French Republic, François Mitterrand.” Francois Mitterrand was President of France from 1981 to 1995.Mohamed Ennaceur, the President of the Assembly of People’s Representatives, corrected him. “I’m sorry dear friend, it was the one I knew in my age,” Beji Caid Essebsi justified. Gabonese President Ali Bongo, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski, and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi also participated in the march.“We are the elected representatives of the nation. I was present in the parliament on the day of the attack and today I am participating in the march to say No to terrorism. We do not accept terrorism in Tunisia. We are working on the anti-terrorism law. We will study it, and in mid-April we will vote,” said Suhail Alouini, deputy member of Nida Tunes. According to him, the law will protect citizens against terrorism. It will be much tougher on people who advocate terrorism, and will protect the Tunisian police and military and will protect human rights. “It’s a balance that we try to keep. We hope to get there,” he added.In 2015, two Republican marches were organized in the world after terrorist acts. The first was held in Paris in January following the events at Charlie Hebdo on January 7 and Hyper Kosher on January 9, while the second march was organized following the terrorist attack against Bardo museum on March 18.United colors of ReligionsThe Tunisian Islamist movement Ennahda was also present at the march. “This is an event that marks the solidarity with the families of the victims, and also with Tunisia, who stands against terrorism. It is also a message to terrorists from the anywhere world who say that terrorism has no country or religion.Muslims, Jews and Christians are united against terrorism,” said Rached Ghannouchi, leader of the Ennahda movement.Other religious leaders also participated in the Republican march, including the Chief Rabbi of Tunisia. “The march has boosted morale of Tunisians who see now that everyone is with Tunisia. The country has its men of all faiths. We hope that Tunisia will always be protected,” said the Chief Rabbi of Tunisia, Haim Bitan.Tunisians living in Tunisia and elsewhere in the world gathered to denounce these acts. In some media outlets, terrorists are often associated with religion, and the media often circulates stereotypes that create confusion between religion and violence. “I am first a Tunisian. And this is my fight against terrorism. The tragedies in France and Tunisia were committed by people who have nothing to do with religion. They are trying to scare us. Today we met to show that we are for the unity and friendship among peoples and religions,” said Imam Chalghoumi, denouncing the recent acts at the Bardo Museum.Claimed by the Islamic State group, the Bardo attack on March 18 left a total of 22 dead, including 21 foreign tourists and a Tunisian policeman. “The Tunisian people know that they are not alone. Let’s all together at the front and fight terrorism,” said the Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi. read more

Albanian TV Anchors Appear Topless to Boost Audience

Rabat – In the midst of difficult competition to gain more viewers, a private Albanian channel asked its news anchors to appear topless with an open-bust jacket in order to boost viewership numbers.The presenters proceeded to read the news in this fashion, with nothing underneath their jackets, in order to seduce the channel’s viewers, according to AFP.Faced with fierce competition in Albania, Zjarr TV owner Ismet Drishti came up with an unprecedented concept to attract a large number of viewers. “Albania’s TV channels are manipulated by political power,” Drishti told AFP. “The audience is in major need of a medium that will broadcast the information like it is- naked.”Drishti believes that the idea is a win-win situation: present the news and publicize the TV channel. “We do not sell sex; we reproduce the news as it is. It is symbolic and good publicity,” Drishti added.Drishti also mentioned that his TV channel’s audience is constantly growing, adding that the TV’s bulletin is broadcast by cable. “Actually, these bare bulletins broadcast by cable and the internet resulted in a listening audience that continues to increase,” he said.Greta Hoxhaj, a news anchor that presents the news every day at 7:30pm, appeared with Zjarr TV’s staff half-topless.Hoxhaj describes the shortcut she took on her rise to fame: “I worked hard for five years in local television where I remained unnoticed,” she told AFP. “However, within three months doing Zjarr TV I became a star.” read more

John Kerry Enjoys His Time in Marrakech, Visits Bazaars

Rabat – Pictures posted by the American embassy in Rabat on Friday show Secretary of State, John Kerry enjoying his time in Marrakech, Morocco’s first tourist destination.During his visit to Morocco to take part in the UN Conference for Climate Change COP22 in Marrakech, John Kerry, US Secretary of State, met with King Mohammed VI and visited the city’s famous bazaar.The US Secretary of State held a private meeting with King Mohammed VI during his visit to the COP22 summit held in Marrakech between November 7 and 18. The US official made a statement to the press following the meeting with the King and stated that the meeting was “very comprehensive and very positive.”“President Barack Obama and I are grateful for the quality of the relationship we have with His Majesty, Morocco and the government,” he said.Regarding Morocco’s organization of COP22, Secretary Kerry said that “Morocco did a wonderful job.”The 22nd session of the UN conference in Marrakech, would result in a “strong declaration, which enshrines the Paris Agreement on climate,” Kerry added.The American diplomat seized the opportunity to visit the famous bazaar area in Marrakech. The US Embassy in Rabat posted photos on Facebook of the US official in many antiquity boutiques. The caption with the photos states, “Everyone admires Moroccan handicrafts, including US Secretary of State John Kerry and Ambassador Bush.”The caption also shows that the US Department of Commerce and Morocco’s Ministry of Crafts are currently working together to promote Moroccan artists in the framework of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the two countries. The Free Trade Agreement between the United States and Morocco was signed on June 16, 2004 and became effective in 2006. The Morocco-US FTA aims at increasing the bilateral commercial exchange between the two countries by eliminating trade barriers. read more

Germany Deported 14 Times More Maghrebi Migrants in 2018 than 2015

Rabat – Germany deported 1,873 rejected asylum-seekers to the Maghreb region in 2018, 35 percent more than in 2017. Germany deported 826 Moroccans (up from 634 in 2017), 678 Algerians (504 in 2017), and 369 Tunisians (251 in 2017).According to the Rheinische Post, which cited the German interior ministry, the number of immigrants Germany has deported to the Maghreb region grew nearly 14 times from 2015.In 2015, Chancellor Angela Merkel installed a new policy to keep German borders open to an influx of immigrants fleeing war and other hardships. The liberal migration policy received backlash especially after terrorist attacks. Since then, Germany has tried to negotiate to reduce migrant flows, especially of economic migrants as opposed to refugees.Germany’s new interior minister, Horst Seehofer, proposed plans to hold asylum seekers in centers for up to 18 months until the requests of the undocumented migrants are processed.The policy would give Germany the power to deny undocumented migrants at the borders.The German Federal Council, the Bundesrat, postponed a vote last week on a law to rank Morocco, Tunisia, and Algeria as “Safe Countries of Origin” to speed up the process of deportation. The postponement came because of resistance from the green party in Germany.The law was already approved last month by the Bundestag, the German Parliament.According to Article 16a of the European Union’s Asylum Procedures Directive, “safe countries of origin” are countries “in which, on the basis of their laws, enforcement practices and general political conditions, it can be safely concluded that neither political persecution nor inhuman or degrading punishment or treatment exists.” read more

Is a Visit to Morocco ‘a Visit to the Patriarchy’?

Rabat – When I was 16, a middle-aged man stopped me on a street corner, ostensibly asking for directions. It soon became clear that he had no interest in finding the nearest metro station. Calling me “beautiful,” he asked for my phone number, and when I refused, he literally chased me to the restaurant where I was meeting friends.At 18, I was groped by a stranger outside a nightclub, and at 23 verbally and physically harassed by a colleague in the school I worked at.At 26, a riot policeman grabbed my breasts and called me a w***e during a stop and search. And at 27 I was chased through a market by a stranger wanting to “talk.” I am not alone. According to Globalissues.org, 75% of women globally have experienced sexual harassment. It is a serious issue, not to be taken lightly, and it is a global one.The first incident took place in Madrid, the second two in London, the third in France, and the most recent in Casablanca. Have these incidents led me to believe that all Spanish, English, French, and Moroccan men are perverts? No, because that would be a gross generalization, and it would be xenophobic.‘Moroccan men are so disgusting even insects won’t land on them’You can imagine my surprise, then, when I heard a comedian in my favorite podcast saying that all Moroccan “men are so disgusting that even insects won’t land on them” and that a visit to Morocco was like a trip to “the patriarchy.”Sara Pascoe, a well known intersectional feminist comedian, told listeners of the Guilty Feminist that she could not sleep in her hotel in Morocco because she “was terrified one of these men was going to break into [her] room and murder” her.After my initial shock at hearing such statements on a podcast I have always enjoyed for its famously politically correct, intersectional stance, I discovered that Pascoe regularly uses this skit. On BBC Radio 4, she even referred to Moroccans as “hungry hippos.” So why would a comedian, known for her liberal and politically correct attitudes think it was acceptable to generalize about an entire population based on one brief experience?Pascoe recounted her experience on holiday in Morocco, where, she said, as a solo female traveler, she was harassed on the street, leaving her in tears. Now, this does sound like a truly unpleasant experience, and I do not mean to belittle it in any way. I just question whether this one experience can be used as a basis for a judgment on an entire nation.Statistics from Globalissues.org show that 60-69% of women in the UK, the US, and Morocco have experienced sexual harassment. The number for France is higher, at 70-79%, and in Spain, 50-59% have been harassed. The #Metoo movement also proves that this is a global issue.Why is it worse if the harasser is Morrocan?Sara Pascoe is not alone in her strange, and aberrational, statements about Morocco. For example, my sister recently proposed a girls trip to Morocco, but her friends rejected the idea out of hand. They, like comedian Pascoe, had decided that, because they are Western women, the Moroccan men would not leave them alone.Trawling through Trip Advisor and the Lonely Planet, I found countless posts about sexual harassment from “disgusting” Moroccan men.Personally I do not find that harassment in Morocco is much worse than in any other country. I did, however, experience some harassment in Casablanca but was always defended by male bystanders. To be fair, I also know plenty of Moroccan men who insects would be pleased to land on and who are extremely respectful to women.Wanting to get more perspective on the matter, I asked some of my female friends who have visited me here whether they thought harassment was particularly bad for tourists in Morocco. The responses were mixed, but Marakech got a very bad press.Anna, 32, a very tall, blond, and extremely English-looking woman, said that she had absolutely no problems in Essaouira and felt entirely safe and relaxed.However, she recounted her experience of being “hissed at” and asked “Why don’t you want to be my girlfriend?” while looking for a pharmacy in Marrakech. She added that it was “irritating” rather than “intimidating.” Anna’s unpleasant experience in Marrakech happened before I moved to Morocco, and it did not stop her from visiting again. She understood that one experience in one city does not define an entire nation.Meanwhile, Kerry, 29, from Edinburgh, who freely admits that she stands out as a “very tall, pale British woman in western dress,” said that she never felt “unsafe or threatened.” She said that sometimes she was looked at but did not think it was “creepy.” People just seemed “curious.”Kerry added, though, that she had expected to be harassed. “I’ve heard bad stories about Marrakech from other European travelers.” However, having heard these reports, she came with an open mind. She has visited Morocco twice and is planning a third trip this coming spring.Read Also: Morocco Ranks 63rd in Best Countries for Women, Long Way to Go for Gender EqualityThomasin, 30, had an entirely positive experience. She said, “Essaouira is one of my favorite cities I have visited as a tourist, I felt really safe because there were a lot of women in the streets.”I asked her about the markets, which are supposedly “notorious” for harassment. “The salespeople left me alone and didn’t badger me and I didn’t feel stared at like I have in some European countries. Obviously I’m always wary as a traveler, but I loved Morocco. Wasn’t sure about the hammam though.”Thomasin added she had felt harassed in Rome, to the point that she did not enjoy it. “Tourist heavy cities are often a different kettle of fish than other places in the same country, and you can’t really make judgments about a place based on that.”Let’s look at the factsA UK government report published in 2018 states: “Sexual harassment pervades the lives of women and girls and is deeply ingrained in our culture.” The report goes on to say that sexual harassment in the UK is “a routine and sometimes relentless experience for women and girls, many of whom first experience it at a young age.” I have never heard or seen advice not to visit the UK because of sexual harassment.Stop Street Harassment, a US NGO, released a report in 2017 which states that 81% of women in the US have been sexually harassed in some form. Have you ever been told not to visit the US because of sexual harassment?Statistics from Morocco’s National Observatory show that 73% of women in Morocco have experienced sexual harassment in public spaces. There is no denying that it is a high number, but it is no higher than the percentages in the UK, or the US. But apparently, even for liberal, politically-correct minded people, this means that all Moroccan men, in all Moroccan cities, are disrespectful, sexually aggressive, and “disgusting.”Everyone’s experience is different and valid, but it does not give anyone the right to generalize about an entire male population.While sexual harassment in any form is a serious global issue, and one Morocco desperately needs to address, I cannot help but feel that there is a certain level of unconscious racism in the generalizations circulating about Moroccan men. I am also surprised and disappointed that people like Pascoe, who pride themselves on their intersectionality and liberal views, cannot seem to see the double standard.Read also: Moroccan Court Hands Unprecedented Sentence to Harassment Convict read more

Moroccan FM: ‘ Africa Is Disproportionately Affected by Climate Change’

Rabat – Nasser Bourita, Morocco’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, has said that Africa is growingly and “disproportionately” affected by climate change.  Speaking at a consultative meeting of the Climate Commission for the Sahel region at UN headquarters, Bourita emphasized the continent’s exposure to a number of climate-induced crises mostly caused by actors outside the continent.  “The Sahel region, like the African continent, is unduly and disproportionately affected by the consequences of global warming to which it contributes almost nothing,” he said.The minister noted that the meeting, organized on the eve of the Climate Action Summit, “is an appropriate opportunity to convey our messages to the United Nations and the world.” “Our region is determined to take up its environmental challenges,” said Bourita.  He also added that “the First Africa Action Summit for Continental Co-emergence, held on the margins of COP22, made it possible to enshrine this commitment.”Calling for a responsible and supportive commitment, urging the international community to honor its commitments in terms of helping the Sahel region tackle its growing climate-induced challenges. “If there is one promise to the Sahel today that should finally be honored,” Bourita stressed, “it is to help redress the imbalances caused by climate change.”The minister recalled that international partners expressed, at the First Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Climate Commission for the Sahel Region held in Niamey in February 2019, their commitment to finance the implementation of the Commission’s Regional Priority Programme with a budget of $3.41 billion.“This is an important step that should continue to provide this Commission with full bilateral, regional and international support for the implementation of the Climate Investment Plan (PIC-RS) in its entirety,” he added.Aziz Rabbah, Minister of Energy, also participated in pre-summit activities. The minister attended the Coalition on Energy Transition event organized by Denmark and Ethiopia.A Summit-related press release from the Ministry of Energy emphasized Morocco’s efforts on energy efficiency and other environment-friendly policies. “Morocco has succeeded, as part of its new model of development…to develop an energy model based mainly on the rise of renewable energies and the strengthening of energy efficiency,” said the statement.The ministry also noted that Morocco’s new, energy-efficient model “positions it today among the advanced countries that are really committed to this energy transition.”Several foreign ministers from African countries, as well as representatives of France, the United Kingdom, and the United Nations system, attended the Consultative Meeting of the Climate Commission.The Sahel Region Climate Commission brings together 17 countries from three African subregions: West, Central, and Eastern Africa. It includes, among others, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sudan, and Chad. read more

Greek prime minister calls for early election after EU loss

ATHENS, Greece — Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has called for an early national election following the defeat of his party at the European Parliament elections.Tsipras said from the Syriza party offices that “the result does not rise to our expectations … I will not ignore it or quit.”The government’s term expires in October and before Sunday night’s announcement, government officials insisted that elections would be held at the end of the term.Tsipras said he will visit the Greek president to request the early dissolution of parliament after the second round of local and regional elections on June 2.This puts the election date at June 30 at the earliest.The Associated Press read more

Middle East Ban Kimoon welcomes US Presidents proposal for international meeting

17 July 2007United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today welcomed United States President George W. Bush’s proposal for an international meeting on the Middle East this autumn. “The Secretary-General welcomes the statement made by US President George W. Bush on the Middle East peace process,” a spokesperson for Mr. Ban, who is scheduled to meet the President today in Washington, DC, said in a statement. “He is encouraged by the President’s renewed commitment to a two-State solution, entailing the creation of a viable and contiguous Palestinian state living side-by-side with a secure Israel.”The Secretary-General also welcomed the President’s proposal for an international meeting this autumn. “He looks forward to discussing these ideas with his partners in the Quartet in Lisbon on 19 July,” spokesperson Marie Okabe told reporters in New York. The diplomatic Quartet is comprised of the UN, US, European Union and the Russian Federation. read more

Soaring cereal tab continues to afflict poorest countries UN agency warns

“Food price inflation hits the poor hardest, as the share of food in their total expenditures is much higher than that of wealthier populations,” said Henri Josserand of the Global Information and Early Warning system of the UN Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO).Citing FAO’s new Crop Prospects and Food Situation report, he noted that “food represents about 10 to 20 per cent of consumer spending in industrialized nations, but as much as 60 to 80 per cent in developing countries, many of which are net-food-importers.”The report states that the rise of 56 per cent in 2007-2008 comes after the already harsh increase of 37 per cent in 2006-2007 that had been squeezing lowest-income households hard. For low-income, food-deficit countries in Africa, the cereal bill is projected to increase by a colossal 74 per cent, due to the sharp rise in international cereal prices, freight rates and oil prices, according to FAO.Food riots have already been reported in Egypt, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Madagascar, the Philippines and Haiti in the past month, the agency said. In Pakistan and Thailand, army troops have been deployed to avoid seizing of food from the fields and from warehouses.To help countries cope with the situation, FAO said it has launched an Initiative on Soaring Food Prices (ISFP), offering technical and policy assistance to help vulnerable farmers increase local food production. Field activities are starting in Burkina Faso, Mauritania, Mozambique and Senegal.It is also working with Governments, the UN World Food Programme (WFP) and other partners to create strategies to alleviate the situation.The FAO report, in addition, tentatively predicts that cereal production in 2008 could increase by 2.6 percent to a record 2,164 million tonnes, with the bulk of the increase in wheat.“Should the expected growth in 2008 production materialize, the current tight global cereal supply situation could ease in the new 2008-09 season,” the report said.But much will depend on the weather, FAO cautioned, recalling that at this time last year prospects for cereal production in 2007 were far better than the eventual outcome. 11 April 2008With food riots reported across the globe from the Philippines to Haiti, the United Nations agricultural agency warned today that the cereal import bill of the world’s poorest countries is forecast to rise by over 50 per cent in the current fiscal year. read more

Serb politician jailed by UN tribunal for identifying witnesses

Vojislav Šešelj, who is facing nine charges relating to his alleged role in an ethnic cleansing campaign in the Vojvodina region of Serbia between 1991 and 1993, authored a book containing detailed information – including the names and court-given pseudonyms – about the three witnesses.Mr. Šešelj said he did not reveal the witnesses’ names with the intention of intimidating them, but rather to “unmask a plot in public” regarding some events in the indictment for his war crimes trial.But the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) said it was gravely concerned with “the deliberate way in which the protective measure decisions” concerning the witnesses had been defied by Mr. Šešelj.“The Chamber considers this a serious interference with the administration of justice, particularly given the potential adverse impact of such conduct upon witnesses’ confidence in the Tribunal’s ability to guarantee the effectiveness of protective measures,” according to a summary of the judgment read out by Judge O-Gon Kwon, the ICTY’s Vice-President.“Furthermore, the Chamber recognizes the need to discourage this type of behaviour, and to take such steps as it can to ensure that there is no repetition of such conduct on the part of the Accused or any other person.”The ICTY, which sits in The Hague, also ordered Mr. Šešelj to withdraw the book from his website and to report back to the Tribunal on this action by 7 August.The separate war crimes trial of Mr. Šešelj, which began in late 2006, was adjourned in February this year. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges, which include murder, torture and persecution. 24 July 2009The United Nations tribunal for the former Yugoslavia today gave the leader of the Serbian Radical Party a 15-month jail term after finding him guilty of contempt of court for publishing the names of three protected witnesses in his war crimes trial. read more

Antimalaria efforts in Africa bearing fruit but challenges remain – UN

A report on malaria in Africa by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the Roll Back Malaria (RBM) Partnership shows a ten-fold increase in global malaria funding from external sources to nearly $1.8 billion in 2009, a five-fold increase in global production of insecticide-treated nets to 150 million, and a more than 30-fold increase in the procurement of artemisinin-based combination therapies (ACT) to 160 million doses.“Investment in malaria control is saving lives and reaping far-reaching benefits for countries,” said Coll Seck, RBM Partnership Executive Director. “But without sustained and predictable funding, the significant contribution of malaria control towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals could be reversed,” said Dr. Seck.“Today, with approximately one third of the global investment needed, country programmes are saving a child’s life every three minutes. This is very positive. We cannot afford to relax our efforts,” he added.Data presented in the report confirms that of the nearly 350 million insecticide-treated nets needed to achieve universal coverage, nearly 200 million were received in African countries between 2007 and 2009, and countries have adopted more effective, but also more expensive, treatment strategies.However, the proportion of African children receiving an ACT is still very low and data on the use of diagnostics is still largely unavailable. ACT drugs are recognized as the best for the treatment multi-drug resistant strains of malaria.“With strong collaboration, great progress has been made in the battle against malaria,” said Ann M. Veneman, UNICEF Executive Director. “But more remains to be done as children and pregnant women are still dying of this preventable and treatable disease, especially in Africa.”Two thirds of all malaria control financing is generated by the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, with the United States President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), the World Bank and other bilateral donors making up the balance of external funding.Most of the funding is directed at Africa, where 90 per cent of global malaria deaths occur.The report highlights that while total annual global funding reached approximately $2 billion by the end of 2009, malaria funding still falls short of the estimated $6 billion required annually by the Global Malaria Action Plan (GMAP) to ensure universal coverage of malaria control interventions. 19 April 2010Significant progress has been made in combating malaria in Africa, but more remains to be done as the end of the decade dedicated to making control methods and treatments universally available approaches, the United Nations-led global partnership for coordinated action against malaria said today. read more

UN unveils full list of staff killed in recent deadly attack in

Twenty-three people died in total as a result of the attack on UN House, while 116 others were injured, according to information released by the UN Resident Coordinator in Nigeria, Daouda Touré.Mr. Touré paid tribute to those who died, saying they had “devoted their lives to improving the living conditions of ordinary Nigerians across the country. We will never forget them as individuals. Nor will we forget the passion and courage with which they proudly served the mission and ideals of the United Nations.”Four staff working for the UN Development Programme (UNDP) were killed: Rahmat Abdullahi, a registry clerk; Iliya David Musa, a receptionist; Felicia Nkwuokwu, also a receptionist; and Stephen Obamoh, a radio operator/driver.The World Health Organization (WHO) lost three staff members: Musa Ali, a logistics assistant; Edward Dede, a national professional officer; and Abraham A. Osunsaya, an administrative assistant.Two staff members from the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) died – Johnson Awotunde, a monitoring and evaluation specialist, and Ahmed Abiodun Adewale Kareem, a shipping assistant.Also killed were Elisha Enaburekhan, a driver for the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), and Ingrid Midtgaard, associate expert for the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).All the deceased were Nigerian, except Ms. Midtgaard, who came from Norway.Top UN officials have stressed that the attack will not dissuade the Organization from continuing to carry out its work in Nigeria.Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also announced that the UN would conduct a global threat review in a bid to improve security conditions for staff worldwide. 14 September 2011The United Nations has announced the names of the 11 staff members who perished when the world body’s offices in the Nigerian capital, Abuja, were attacked by a suicide bomber on 26 August. read more

UN human rights office distressed by Saudi executions

The United Nations human rights office today said it is deeply distressed by the recent execution in Saudi Arabia of 10 men, eight of whom were foreign migrant workers, and called on the country to establish a moratorium on the use of the death penalty.The eight Bangladeshi migrant workers were beheaded in public in the capital, Riyadh, on Friday after they were found guilty of killing an Egyptian in 2007, according to media reports. Three other Bangladeshis were sentenced to prison terms and flogging in the same case.The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) noted that, of the at least 58 people reportedly executed in Saudi Arabia this year, 20 were migrant workers.“We call on the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and all other States that still maintain the death penalty to respect international standards that provide safeguards to ensure protection of the rights of those facing the death penalty,” said OHCHR spokesperson Rupert Colville.He told a news conference in Geneva that about 140 of the 193 UN Member States are believed to have abolished the death penalty or introduced a moratorium, either legally or in practice.“We call on the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to join these States and establish a moratorium on the use of the death penalty,” said Mr. Colville. 11 October 2011The United Nations human rights office today said it is deeply distressed by the recent execution in Saudi Arabia of 10 men, eight of whom were foreign migrant workers, and called on the country to establish a moratorium on the use of the death penalty. read more

UN agency warns of danger of bird flu research and urges safety

30 December 2011The United Nations health agency has voiced deep concern that scientific research undertaken on a strain of highly pathogenic influenza could have negative consequences but also acknowledged that tightly-controlled studies needed to continue to limit the possibility of future risks to the global population. In a statement released today, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned that recent studies on whether changes to the H5N1 strain of avian influenza could make it more transmissible between humans might lead to “possible risks and misuses.” Recent media reports have noted that, if published, details of the research could provide bio-terrorists with crucial information on how to mutate the virus into a deadlier, human-to-human transmissible form.“While it is clear that conducting research to gain such knowledge must continue, it is also clear that certain research, and especially that which can generate more dangerous forms of the virus than those which already exist, has risks,” the WHO statement warned, noting that any further research should be done “only after all important public health risks and benefits have been identified and reviewed.” WHO also urged all research teams to fully abide by the regulations set out in the new Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Framework, which sets out a guideline to the sharing of influenza viruses with pandemic potential and the resulting benefits.Since 2003, the H5N1 virus has killed or forced the culling of more than 400 million domestic poultry and caused an estimated $20 billion of economic damage. Although it does not infect humans often, about 60 per cent of those infected with it die. The latest death occurred earlier this year in Cambodia, which has registered eight cases of human infection this year – all of them fatal. While H5N1 was believed to be eliminated from most of the 63 infected countries, in August 2011 the UN’s Food and Agriculture Agency (FAO) reported a surge in outbreaks of the virus, with almost 800 cases recorded between 2010 and 2011. read more

UNICEF set to distribute aid to Madagascars cyclone victims

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) will start distributing medicines and mosquito nets tomorrow to the parts of eastern Madagascar hardest hit by Cyclone Giovanna, which has killed at least 16 people and left a trail of destruction.The death toll from the cyclone, which struck the coast early yesterday and has since crossed the island country, is expected to climb further, according to Dominic Stolarow, UNICEF’s emergency coordinator in Madagascar.Aerial assessments are under way with on-the-ground checks to follow as many areas remain cut off because of flood waters and the damage caused by the cyclonic winds, which topped 180 kilometres per hour in some areas.Numerous hospitals, health-care centres and schools have been flattened or badly damaged by the cyclone, as well as countless homes. In one town alone, an estimated 3,000 houses were destroyed.Electricity and water supplies have been cut in many areas, although those services have now been largely restored to the neighbourhoods of the capital, Antananarivo, that had been worst hit by Giovanna.Mr. Stolarow told the UN News Centre today that providing clean water and decent sanitation, re-establishing health care, building temporary classrooms and ensuring there is enough food for families in need are the top priorities for UNICEF and other humanitarian agencies.He said the agency would tomorrow help to distribute about 10,000 mosquito nets as well as large stocks of emergency medicines, working with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and local authorities.Madagascar is frequently beset by cyclones and tropical storms in the early months of the year. Giovanna hit the country exactly a year to the day since Madagascar was struck by Cyclone Bingiza, which killed 14 people and destroyed almost 6,000 homes. 15 February 2012The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) will start distributing medicines and mosquito nets tomorrow to the parts of eastern Madagascar hardest hit by Cyclone Giovanna, which has killed at least 16 people and left a trail of destruction. read more

Tense conditions prevail in Libyan town after deadly ethnic clashes – UN

A team comprising staff from the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) and the UN Humanitarian Country Team has wrapped up an assessment visit to Kufra, and found that the ceasefire brokered by local authorities last week is still holding, according to a press release from UNSMIL.More than 100 people are now thought to have died in Kufra as a result of clashes between the Toubu and Zwai tribal groups earlier this month in the desert town.Long-simmering tensions between the two ethnic communities erupted on 12 February in Kufra, which is also a key staging point for migrants making their way between sub-Saharan Africa and the north of the continent.UNSMIL reported today that as much as half of Kufra’s population has sought refuge outside the town, while some 200 third-country migrants are waiting to be moved from the area.The UN and Libyan humanitarian partners continue to provide assistance to Kufra residents, supplying food, medicines, mattresses, blankets and hygiene kits. The mission said more supplies will arrive soon from existing stocks in the country and elsewhere.UNSMIL reiterated its call on the Toubu and Zwai to resolve their dispute peacefully and said it would continue to help Libya’s interim national authorities to pursue reconciliation efforts. 27 February 2012The situation remains tense in the south-eastern Libyan town of Kufra, where the death toll from recent inter-ethnic clashes is at least 100 and half the population has fled, the United Nations reported today. read more

Tim Hortons opens first restaurant in Oman

OAKVILLE, Ont. — Oman has its first Tim Hortons restaurant as the iconic Canadian chain expands operations in the Persian Gulf states.The Oman restaurant is the 20th Tim Hortons to open in the region since the chain signed a master licence agreement with the Apparel Group last year.The agreement calls for up to 120 multi-format stores to be opened in the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman over a five-year period.“We’re thrilled that the Apparel Group has reached the milestone of 20 restaurants in the GCC (Gulf Co-operation Council), since opening the first location in Dubai in September of 2011,” said David Roy, managing director, international operations, Tim Hortons.“With each restaurant, we are able to reach new customers in different communities and countries.”Using a targeted approach to explore international opportunities is part of the company’s strategic plan.“The company will continue to focus on expansion in existing GCC markets, focusing next on Qatar,” it said.Apparel Group is a global fashion and lifestyle brand based out of Dubai that operates more than 50 leading brands in 14 countries.Tim Hortons, has more than 4,100 restaurants system wide, including more than 3,300 in Canada offering coffee, baked goods and fast-food service.Since opening its first U.S. store in Buffalo, N.Y., in 1985, it has expanded to more than 750 stores in a dozen states — including Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia — and plans to open another 300 locations over the next three years.The Canadian Press read more

Closing Bell TSX closes higher for 6th day jobs data suggest Fed

TORONTO — The Toronto stock market closed higher for a sixth session Tuesday with most sectors showing gains as traders sensed that the TSX may have turned the corner amid improving global economic conditions.Here are the closing numbersTSX — 13,248.06 +61.53 0.47%S&P 500 — 15,467.66 +75.46 0.49%Dow — 1,754.67 +10.01 0.57%Nasdaq — 3,929.57 +9.52 0.24%Traders also took in weaker than expected U.S. jobs data that suggested the Federal Reserve likely will be in no rush to start winding up a key element of economic stimulus.The S&P/TSX composite index climbed 61.53 points to 13,248.06, its highest level since July 2011, led by mining stocks.The U.S. Labour Department said job creation for September came in at 148,000 while the jobless rate dipped 0.1% to 7.2%. Economists had been looking for job gains in the neighbourhood of 180,000.Also, August job creation was revised upward from 169,000 to 193,000. The report was to have been released weeks ago but was held up by the partial U.S. government shutdown that ended last week.There has been growing speculation since May about when the Fed might start to taper its monthly purchases of US$85 billion of assets, which have kept interest rates low and supported strong gains on many equity markets this year.“If there was any doubt that that wasn’t to occur in the fourth quarter, I think basically today has removed that uncertainty entirely,” said Stephen Lingard, portfolio manager at Franklin Multi-Asset Strategies.“It is a 2014 story because underlying economic growth is not too strong. It really is on the precipice of being too weak; payrolls still haven’t recovered from the great financial recession.”The Canadian dollar was up 0.11 of a cent at 97.19 cents US as other data showed that Canadian retail sales edged up 0.2% in August to $40.3 billion. Economists had expected a gain of 0.3%.New York gained momentum as other data showed that spending on U.S. construction projects rose at a solid pace in August, helped by further gains in residential building. Overall construction activity climbed to the highest level in more than four years.Construction spending increased 0.6% in August compared with July.The Dow Jones industrials moved up 75.46 points to 15,467.66, the Nasdaq gained 9.52 points to 3,929.57 and the S&P 500 index closed up 10.01 points to another record at 1,754.67.The TSX gold sector led advancers, up about 4.55% while December bullion advanced $26.80 to US$1,342.60 an ounce. Barrick Gold (TSX:ABX) jumped $1.21 to C$20.47 and Goldcorp (TSX:G) ran up $1.26 to $26.99.The base metals sector gained 4% as the December copper contract on the Nymex rose three cents to US$3.34 a pound. Teck Resources (TSX:TCK.B) rose $1.17 to C$29.72.The financials sector was 0.3% ahead while CIBC (TSX:CM) improved by 1.06 cents to $86.41.The energy component turned lower, down 0.48% as oil prices went further into negative territory after other data showed rising inventories. The U.S. government said Monday, in a report delayed five days due to the government shutdown, that U.S. crude supplies rose by four million barrels in the week ended Oct. 11.The November crude contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange decline $1.42 to US$97.80 a barrel, its lowest level since June 28. Canadian Natural Resources (TSX:CNQ) shed $1.06 to C$86.41.Traders also focused on earnings news this week.After the close Tuesday, Canadian National Railways (TSX:CNR) said quarterly profits climbed 6.1% to $705 million. CN also posted adjusted earnings of $1.72 a share, a dime better than estimates. Revenue came in at $2.7 billion, against estimates of $2.644 billion.Canadian Pacific Railway (TSX:CP) reports on Wednesday. CN had closed down 15 cents to $109.75, just under its 52-week high of $110, and CP gained 50 cents to $134.74.Netflix reported Monday after the close that earnings quadrupled as the Internet video subscription service’s lineup of original programming helped attract 1.3 million more U.S. subscribers in its latest quarter. Netflix earned $32 million, or 52 cents per share, four cents higher than estimates.Revenue rose 22% from last year to $1.1 billion to match analyst projections. Its stock surged in after hours trading Monday and in pre-market trading Tuesday. But the shares were hit with a wave of profit taking and closed down down $32.47,or 9.15%, to $322.52 after earlier running up as high as $389.16.The string of gains on the TSX through late October has left the main index up about 6.55% year to date, with advances this month led by the gold, base metals and financial sectors.“I don’t know if we would definitively signal the all-clear but this Canadian market underperformance that we have seen, we do think is getting long in the tooth,” added Lingard.“It feels like we could be nearing an inflection point where at least Canada isn’t a significant underperformer as it has been lately.” TOP STORIESApple unveils ‘screaming fast’ iPad AirColler Capital said to be in talks to join BlackBerry biddersNetflix stock drops after analysts calls valuation ‘difficult to justify’No proof of job crisis in Canada, TD analysis showsWHAT’S ON DECK WEDNESDAYECONOMIC NEWSCANADA10 a.m.Bank of Canada policy announcement and report UNITED STATES8:30 a.m.Import price index: Economists expect a 0.2% rise from the month before, a decline of 1% year over year 9 a.m.FHFA House Price Index (Aug) House price index: Economists expect 0.8% rise CORPORATE NEWSUNITED STATESThe Boeing Company Q3 earnings: Analysts expect US$1.54 a share Bristol-Myers Squibb Q3 earnings: Analysts expect 44¢ a share Caterpillar Inc. Q3 earnings: Analysts expect US$1.67 a share Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc Q3 earnings: Analysts expect 83¢ a share E*Trade Financial Corp Q3 earnings: Analysts expect 17¢ a share Eli Lilly Q3 earnings: Analysts expect US$1.03 a share Motorola Solutions, Inc. Q3 earnings: Analysts expect US$1.02 a share The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc. Q3 earnings: Analysts expect 63¢ a share AT&T Inc. Q3 earnings: Analysts expect 65¢ a share CANADAAgnico Eagle Mines Ltd Q3 earnings: Analysts expect 9¢ a share Canadian Pacific Railways Q3 earnings: Analysts expect $1.71 a share Encana Corp Q3 earnings: Analysts expect 16¢ a share read more

Fresh Disney titles coming to Netflix Canada only months after they leave

TORONTO — Disney titles are coming to Netflix Canada starting next year.[np_storybar title=”One-third of Netflix users in Canada streaming from U.S. catalogue, poll finds” link=”https://business.financialpost.com/2014/07/16/one-third-of-netflix-inc-users-in-canada-streaming-from-u-s-catalogue-poll-finds/”%5DThere’s a not-so-secret trick for Canadian Netflix subscribers to access movies and TV shows that are supposed to be available only south of the border [/np_storybar]On Thursday, Netflix Inc. and The Walt Disney Studios announced a multi-year exclusive licensing deal that will bring first-run Disney live-action and animated films to the popular streaming service.Starting in mid-2015, Netflix Canada subscribers will be able to watch new movies from Disney’s live action division, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm, Disneynature and DreamWorks Studios about eight months after the titles leave the theatre.That means upcoming titles like “Finding Nemo” sequel “Finding Dory” and “101 Dalmatians” live-action spinoff “Descendants” will likely land on Netflix.Disney most recently licensed the pay TV broadcast rights for its productions including “Frozen,” “The Avengers,” “Brave” and “The Muppets” to Corus Entertainment, which aired them on The Movie Network and Movie Central channels.Netflix launched a Canadian service in 2010 and is home to popular TV series such as “House of Cards” and “Orange is the New Black,” as well as a wide variety of films.The company has about 48 million members in more than 40 countries. read more

Key foreign currency quotations

Quotations for key foreign currencies in terms of the Canadian dollar. Quotations are nominal, for information purposes only.Canadian dollar value on Tuesday, the previous day, three-months and one-year: Currency Tue Fri 3 months Year U.S. dollar 1.2371 1.2390 1.3483 1.2990 British Pound 1.6094 1.6060 1.7416 1.7272 Japanese Yen 0.0114 0.0113 0.0122 0.0125 Euro in U.S. 1.1909 1.1880 1.1252 1.1158 Euro in Cdn 1.4733 1.4719 1.5171 1.4494Quotations provided by the Bank of Canada

TNA calls for genuine reconciliation

A majority of the UNHRC members including India voted in favor of a U.S sponsored resolution on Thursday which called for the implementation of recommendations of a war commission appointed by the Sri Lankan President and to also address accountability issues on the final stages of the war between the military and Tamil Tiger rebels. “The need for substantial progress in human rights protection, genuine and meaningful reconciliation and accountability are deep-felt needs of all citizens of the country. We therefore urge the government to avail itself of the opportunity provided by the Resolution of the Human Rights Council and dedicate itself to serving these urgent needs as provided for in the resolution,” the Tamil National Alliance said.Following the end of the war in May 2009 with the defeat of the rebels the Tamil National Alliance was engaged with the government in talks to reach a political solution for the Tamil people. The Tamil National Alliance said it hopes that the resolution and the clear collective will of the Council will encourage the government to face the future with fortitude and move decisively to protect human rights and take tangible action to advance genuine reconciliation. The Tamil National Alliance on Friday called on the government to take tangible action to advance genuine reconciliation in the country.In a statement on the outcome of a vote on Sri Lanka at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), the Tamil National Alliance said that vote will benefit all Sri Lankans, regardless of ethnicity. The talks however stalled after the government insisted that a final solution can only be reached with the backing of parliament and other Tamil political parties.The Tamil National Alliance, in its statement on Friday, said it strongly believes that the resolution adopted at the UNHRC is a first step in the pursuit of justice and accountability.The Tamil National Alliance said it will, on behalf of the Tamil people, work with commitment and dedication towards the advancement of these goals. read more

All ex child combatants freed

The government says all former LTTE child soldiers who underwent rehabilitation, have been freed.Minister of Plantation Industries and Special Envoy of the President on Human Rights Mahinda Samarasinghe told the third committee of the 67th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York yesterday that with regards to the rehabilitation and reintegration of ex-combatants, out of approximately 12,000 persons as of 1 October 2012, 10,985 persons, which included 594 LTTE child soldiers have been rehabilitated and reintegrated into society. He said that the government adhered to a policy of not subjecting ex-combatant children to legal proceedings based on the rationale that they were victims and not perpetrators. “We note with pleasure that Sri Lanka has now been delisted by the UN Secretary-General from Annex II of the UN Security Council Resolution 1612, on Children and Armed Conflict. This is a result of the efforts taken by the GOSL to inquire into several cases on child recruitment and comply with the recommendations of the Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict and those of the UNSG’s Special Representative,” the Minister said. (Colombo Gazette) He also said that all child soldiers released were afforded the opportunity of a formal education and that they were reunited with their families.He also said that 212 former combatants, who were previously pursuing tertiary education were re-inducted into the university system to follow their undergraduate studies. “Not a single child combatant remains in rehabilitative care or legal custody today,” the Minister said. read more

At least 13 killed in prison riot

The situation however further escalated and the military was called in as the prisoners broke into the prison armory and stole the weapons. The Colombo national hospital said that 13 bodies were brought to the hospital and 34 others were admitted with injuries. Among those injured was the head of the STF.A journalist who went to cover the riot was also injured and admitted to hospital. Police and army reinforcements were deployed to the prison and the situation as brought under control, the prisons commissioner said. At least 13 people were killed and more than 30 others were injured when a riot broke out at the Welikada prison.The riot broke out when prison guards together with the police STF attempted to search the cells of the Welikada prison for heroin and mobile phones. The prisons department said that the prisoners had fired at the security forces and the police using the weapons they had stolen.Eye witnesses said that some inmates had attempted to escape from the prison and were shot at by the security forces. Irate prisoners then attacked the prison guards and police with stones forcing the police to fire tear-gas inside the prison to control the situation. read more

Former LTTE members seek international backing

A group of former LTTE members contesting the August 17 Parliament election, have sought international assistance.The Crusaders for Democracy consists of former LTTE cadres who have been rehabilitated and are looking to live an ordinary life. Vidyatharan also said that the people in the South should not fear the former LTTE members and should instead accept them in the same way that they accepted the JVP after the Marxists entered democratic politics.He also said that, after the election the Crusaders for Democracy will look to work with the political parties in the South for national reconciliation. (Colombo Gazette) Leader of the Crusaders for Democracy N. Vidyatharan said that the Crusaders for Democracy will campaign for the August 17 Parliamentary election seeking the right to represent the Tamils in Parliament. Vidyatharan said that the international community, including the United States, the UK and India, who have been calling on the LTTE in the past to renounce violence, must now accept the members of the Crusaders for Democracy as they have renounced violence and have joined the democratic stream. read more

UN reiterates North must be involved in talks

The United Nations has reiterated that the Northern Province must be involved in talks to establish a mechanism to investigate incidents related to the war.Former Foreign Minister, Professor G.L Peiris had earlier questioned a statement made by the UN that the Northern Provincial Council must be included in the accountability process. Dujarric said the principle of inclusive, participatory and consultative processes will apply to UN support for the establishment of credible accountability and reconciliation mechanisms that meet international standards.He said the UN believes that there should be genuine and inclusive consultations on a national basis, including the Northern Province, to help arrive at the right model in the Sri Lankan context. (Colombo Gazette) Stéphane Dujarric, the spokesperson for UN Secretary General Ban ki-moon however said that the UN believes that there should be genuine and inclusive consultations on a national basis, including the Northern Province, to help arrive at the right model in the Sri Lankan context. Dujarric said the UN supports the Government and the people of Sri Lanka in their efforts to advance reconciliation and accountability.“At the request of the Government of Sri Lanka, the UN is exploring the provision of a broad package of technical and financial assistance in consultation with all key stakeholders.  The framework of UN support for peacebuilding in Sri Lanka was presented in Sri Lanka last June by the Resident Coordinator.  What is being discussed for support by the Peacebuilding Fund are initiatives to advance the process of reconciliation in Sri Lanka through the resettlement of internally displaced persons, national reconciliation, and the development of credible transitional justice mechanisms in line with international standards.  UN support is always built on the basis of inclusive, transparent and participatory consultations with all key stakeholders. $1 million has already been disbursed to support resettlement and integration initiatives for the remaining internally displaced persons in the north and east on seized land that has been returned by the Government.  For the rest, the UN continues to consult with the Government of Sri Lanka, and all key stakeholders, to finalize the details of UN support,” he said. In a statement yesterday in New York, Dujarric said that he had been asked to clarify an earlier statement he made on Sri Lanka and on the accountability process. read more

Over 30 arrested for violating court order and protesting

At least 27 people sought treatment at the Hambantota hospital after stones were pelted towards the police and the venue of the project and the police retaliated with water cannons and tear-gas. The protesters, led by some monks, marched towards the venue of the event which was attended by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and other Ministers and diplomats. Over 30 people have been arrested for violating a court order and protesting in Hambantota this morning.Several people were injured during a tense situation in Hambantota when protesters defied a court order and staged a protest near the venue of the launch of the Sri Lanka-China Industrial Zone Development Project. A court order was issued yesterday against the protest being staged in the area and the police informed the protesters about this and prevented them from going further.Most of those arrested over the incident were remanded. (Colombo Gazette) read more

India says Sri Lanka is a valued friend and neighbour

The Indian President India and Sri Lanka share a unique relationship.“The close ties of friendship between our countries have been built over centuries. The expanding scope of our wide-ranging relationship continues to be the strong foundation of our contemporary discourse,” he said. “Independence Day greetings to the people of Sri Lanka, a valued friend & neighbour. May Sri Lanka continue to prosper in the years to come,” Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a tweet. Meanwhile, the President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee also extended his greetings and felicitations to the Government and people of Sri Lanka. The President said that under the renewed dynamism in the Sri Lankan polity under President Maithripala Sirisena’s leadership will help to forge a stable path for the future of Sri Lanka and further strengthen the Indo-Lanka partnership to the mutual benefit of its peoples.“On this occasion, I would like to assure you that as a close friend and neighbour, India will continue to extend her support to the Government and people of Sri Lanka as you pursue your national goals,” he added. (Colombo Gazette) India says Sri Lanka is a valued friend and neighbour and the friendship between both countries continues to be the strong.The Indian Government says it will continue to extend support to the Government and people of Sri Lanka to achieve its National goals. read more

Sri Lankan couple who entered Tamil Nadu arrested

A Sri Lankan Tamil couple were arrested under the Foreigner’s Act after they reportedly entered India clandestinely through a boat on Saturday, The Hindu newspaper reported.Police identified the couple as V. Dharmakumar (37) and Nainurusha (33) of Baticaloa. They had landed near Thangachimadam in Ramanathapuram district on the night of Friday. Later, they came to a Sri Lankan Refugee Camp in Uchapatti near Tirumangalam.The Q Branch police handed them over to Austinpatti police in Madurai, who arrested them. (Colombo Gazette) read more

UN chief deeply concerned over floods in Sri Lanka

UN Secretary-General António Guterres said he was “deeply concerned by the devastating impact caused by Cyclone Mora on Sri Lanka and Bangladesh,” adding that the UN stood “ready to scale up its support to the government-led response efforts in both countries.”The UN said that the UN Migration Agency (IOM) deployed three rapid assessment teams to the most affected districts. “When the rain has eased on Sunday and Monday, rescue workers used the break in the weather to deliver much-needed aid to the worst-hit areas. But many villages remain inundated and cut off from basic services,” said the UN’s migration agency.Sri Lanka’s Health Ministry is also deploying mobile health units and will introduce vector control measures to combat expected outbreaks of mosquito-borne dengue fever, which often follows flooding. Displaced people living in emergency shelters are particularly vulnerable. (Colombo Gazette) In a press statement, IOM maintained that while its teams travel to the four worst-hit districts of Ratnapura, Galle, Matara and Kalutara – in the south and centre of the country – the Government indicated that over 768 houses have been destroyed and 5,869 partially damaged while 80,409 people were temporarily displaced to 361 safe locations. More than half the displaced are located in Ratnapura district. The flooding is believed to be the worst since May 2003, when a similarly powerful monsoon from the southwest destroyed 10,000 homes and killed 250 people, according to IOM. read more

President accuses politically indecent groups for protests

The President was speaking at a ceremony held today (June 22) at Lankapura Maha Vidyalaya, Polonnaruwa, the President’s office said. “The Government has taken the policy decision that the private sector university or educational institute should provide education according to the rules recognized by the government” he said.The President vested the new two storied building of Vijitha Primary School in Pulathisigama with the students.Chief Minister of North-Central Province Peshala Jayarathne, Provincial Minister Sampath Sri Nilantha ad the Principal of the school Sarath Hemakumara also participated in this event. “To make the dreams of the rest of the students a reality, state universities as well as private universities with higher standards should be established. We cannot limit the educational rights of any child at any time in the country,” he said.The President stated that nearly 80,000 people are going abroad for higher education annually. He said it is a matter to be worried that the children of low-income families are going abroad for education by finding money through pawning their houses and lands. President Maithripala Sirisena says some politically indecent groups are trying to show the country that the Government is acting to emasculate free education by depriving the opportunities of the students of the medical faculties in Government universities.“They are misleading university students. I don’t blame any university student for the actions of those who conspire to use students as tools. These are done by undisciplined political groups,” he said. He pointed out that nearly 2, 50,000 students sit for AL exam annually and 90,000 of them are eligible for university education but university admission is offered only for 25,000 students. read more

Court orders DNA test on suspect in rape of three girls

The NCPA says it had received a complaint to the effect that the investigation by the Police was not being conducted properly. The Muttur Magistrate today ordered a DNA test to be carried out on the main suspect in the rape of three girls.The National Child Protection Authority (NCPA) had sought approval for the DNA test to be carried out on the suspect over the May 2017 rape incident. The NCPA had also sought approval to record video statements from the three victims and the court granted approval.The Muttur Magistrate ordered the CID to take over the investigations from the Muttur Police. Appearing in the case today the NCPA informed court it was investigating the complaint and sought court approval for the DNA test. The case is to be heard again in September. (Colombo Gazette) read more

PM says economy has improved under Maithripala Sirisena

He said that when the current unity Government took office it had to take steps to pay a huge debt as a result of some unsuccessful projects implemented by the former regime. Wickremesinghe said that the Government has been able to settle a major part of the loans and is now focusing on developing the country. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe says the economy is now stable thanks to the leadership provided by President Maithripala Sirisena.Speaking at an event held today to mark International Nurses Day, the Prime Minister said that the Sri Lankan economy was at an all-time low when the former Government was in power. (Picture shows the President and the Prime Minister at the event today) The Prime Minister also said that while the strong US economy is having an impact on developing countries, Sri Lanka is in a position to withstand that pressure.He said that the Sri Lankan economy is being properly managed and so the Government is in a position to allocate funds for key sectors like education and health. (Colombo Gazette) read more

Former Parliamentarian Anuruddha Polgampola granted bail

The move to suspend him followed several concerns raised over his appointment.Polgampola had received his letter of appointment from President Maithripala Sirisena at the President’s Official Residence on May 4 after which the appointment was withdrawn. (Colombo Gazette) Former Parliamentarian Anuruddha Polgampola, who was arrested by the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) recently over his alleged involvement in the fraud of Rs 8 million, was granted bail by court today.Polgampola was recently appointed as the new Chairman of the State Timber Corporation but the appointment was later suspended. read more

JVP hands over noconfidence motion on Government

Last week a no-confidence motion was submitted to Parliament against Minister Rishad Bathiudeen.Dissanayake said that the focus must not be on individuals but on the entire Government. (Colombo Gazette) The Government had earlier said that information regarding the attacks had been communicated to the authorities prior to the attacks, but the information had not been acted on. The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) handed over a no-confidence motion against the Government to Parliament today,The no-confidence motion was handed over to Speaker Karu Jayasuriya. Dissanayake said that the public can decide at the next election if they have faith in this Government.He said that Parliament can also decide if this Government must continue and the way to decide that is through a no-confidence motion. JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake said earlier that the no-confidence motion will hold the Government directly responsible for the Easter Sunday attacks. read more

Students raise money in ball hockey tournament

Front row, from left: Charissa DiMarco, Elizabeth Angotti, Alicia deVries. Back row, from left: Codieann Campbell, Chelsey Cook (special events co-ordinator with the Alzheimer Society of Niagara), Brian Broley from ballhockey.com, Laura Broley, Kristina Wamboldt, Jennifer Nurse, Stephanie Gumieniak and Taylor Jones.The Brock Leaders Citizenship Society has raised more than $5,000 for the Alzheimer Society Niagara Foundation.The society, which is comprised of students who have shown noteworthy academic or leadership ability, held a fundraising ball hockey tournament in St. Catharines earlier this year. The event is known as the Flora Broley Memorial Ball Hockey Tournament. The students raised $5,210 for the local charity.Students in the society receive a scholarship and must perform 40 hours of community service while maintaining an 80 per cent average. read more

Hamilton fire and police waiting on green light to use naloxone

As early as next week both Hamilton Fire and Hamilton Police could be given the green light to use naloxone kits when responding to drug overdoses.Hamilton Fire crews already have naloxone kits on their trucks and they’ve been trained to use them.“For the safety of firefighters alone we carry naloxone kits, nasal kits. If a firefighter is exposed to a drug and is suffering the effects of a drug overdose, we have the ability to deliver it to ourselves” said Stan Double, President of the Hamilton Professional Firefighters Association.But they are still waiting for the okay to deliver it to the public.“Things don’t happen overnight. We’re certainly prepared to work with the fire department, the city and councillors to ensure this critical service can be put in place.”Last year Hamilton Fire responded to more than 200 drug overdose calls. In many cases they’re first on scene which is why it makes sense to have naloxone kits on their trucks.So far this year, Public Health has distributed more than 350 naloxone kits as part of their harm reduction program. It equates to saving more than 80 lives.Currently, Hamilton Police officers aren’t equipped with naloxone kits, but that too may change.In the past, police say they believe the life-saving drug should be handled by paramedics. Cost was also a factor until the province stepped-in. The SIU- Ontario’s police watchdog- says if naloxone is administered by a police officer they will be investigated.“They want to do the right thing. They’re going to do the right thing, but this throws a wrench into just acting and doing what’s best right then and there.” said Clint Twolan with the Hamilton Police.At a time when Hamilton’s opioid death rate exceeds the provincial average, emergency responders agree, it’s time for a change. Hamilton Fire will present their case to the board of health for approval on Monday.Poice say they will speak about naloxone on Thursday at the Police Services board meeting. read more

Accidental firework show in South Carolina town

Residents in the town of Fort Mill, SC woke up to a surprise when storage containers outside firework shop went up in flames this July 4th.Photos posted to social media by Michael Stechschulte show multiple firework explosions.Fireworks stand is on fire @WCCBCharlotte @wcnc pic.twitter.com/RoGlMZD9SM— Michael Stechschulte (@Msteck101) July 4, 2019York County police posted photos of the firefighters dodging the sparks as they worked to battle the blaze.Firefighters are battling a fire at Davy Jones Fireworks store on the section of Carowinds Blvd. near the store is closed. You can turn North towards Carowinds Park off Ext 90 but not south. #YCSONEWS #YOCONEWS pic.twitter.com/knAxLxMM63— York County Sheriff (@YCSO_SC) July 4, 2019 NOTICE: To clarify this is not the actual store the fire was in containers outside the store. Carowinds Blvd from Hwy 51 to the I-77 Exit ramp is closed to traffic.Please find an alternate route. #YCSONEWS #YOCONEWS#4thofjuly #IndepenceDay pic.twitter.com/hXo47RryBd— York County Sheriff (@YCSO_SC) July 4, 2019The store’s website says they have Artillery Shells, Assortments, Firecrackers/Salutes, Fountains, Multi Shots, Heavy Weight Multi Shots, Novelties, Roman Candles, and more.Investigators have not yet said what might have caused the blaze. read more

WatchGouging to blame for surging gas prices not taxes says BC Premier

But Horgan says the Metro Vancouver mayors’ council asked him for assistance to cover the shortfall in funding new transit projects, and he gave them a tax tool they have the option of using.The council has said that if it finds other ways to make up the shortfall, it won’t have to use the increased gas tax. Grant Hindsley/AP Photo VICTORIA — Premier John Horgan says price gouging, not higher taxes, is responsible for skyrocketing gasoline prices in British Columbia.Horgan says the price per litre rose nine cents between Tuesday night and Wednesday morning and that suggests fuel companies are seeking bigger profits.He says there’s a disconnect between the price of a barrel of oil and the price at the pumps and he’s raised the issue of gouging with the federal government.Outage in Canada’s oilsands is pushing U.S. crude to four-year highWe’re finally told what the carbon tax will cost us. Are you sitting down?Opposition Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson accused Horgan of a “tax grab” last week after the NDP government approved a 1.5 per cent increase in the gas tax to fund Metro Vancouver transit.The price of gas per litre rose nine cents in British Columbia between Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. read more

Grieving loved one speaks out in video urging tips in triple homicide

A family member of one of three people found dead last November outside an Indigenous community southwest of London has made another emotional plea to the public, hoping to shake loose new information that could help police in their investigation into the killings.“We shouldn’t even have to do this, but I look at it, if we do this, if it ever happens again, maybe the community will come forward a little faster because the waiting is killing us,” says Linda Porter, tears streaming down her cheeks, in a video released Thursday by the Ontario Provincial Police in which she asks anyone with information to come forward.Linda Porter is the sister of Alan Porter, 33, of Six Nations of the Grand River – one of three people whose bodies were found shortly before 10 a.m. on Nov. 4 in a rural area on Bodkin Road near Jones Drive, just outside Oneida of the Thames First Nation.The other two bodies were those of Michael Shane Jamieson, 32, and Melissa Trudy Miller, 37, also from Six Nations. Miller was seven months pregnant with a baby boy when she died.Their bodies were found with a stolen, grey Silverado pickup truck.Since the investigation began, police have charged Kirsten Bomberry, 36, of Six Nations with three counts of accessory after the fact to murder.But beyond that, police have said very little about the case, including how the trio died.The release of the video Thursday, the second time relatives of the victims come forward asking for help, comes as the police appear to be at a standstill in the investigation – more than three months after the bodies were first found.“We are using this video as one more tool to appeal to the public to have someone come forward with information,” said Sgt. Laura Brown of Western Region OPP.In November, police held a news conference along with family members of the victims. Later that month, police also closed one block at Fourth Line between Tuscarora Road and Onondaga Road in Six Nations as part of their investigation.But Brown said police had no more information to release about the investigation besides the video.“Hence the appeal for information,” she said.Brown wouldn’t say either how many tips police have received since launching the investigation, only saying they fully investigate every new piece of information they receive. An OPP poster published Thursday Feb. 14, 2019. Some other questions remain, including if there are any links to the killing in 2017 of Miller’s common-law spouse; his body was found near where the victims of this triple homicide were discovered.Douglas Hill, 48, had been missing from his Brantford home since June of 2017 when his remains were found near Southwold, at the opposite end of Bodkin Road from the most-recent crime scene, in August 2017.Court documents revealed Hill died after he was struck in the head with the claw end of a hammer.A Brantford woman and a Six Nations man and woman were charged with being accessories after murder. After an extensive preliminary hearing, a judge determined there was insufficient evidence to proceed with the charges.Days later, a murder charge against a female teen who can’t be identified because of her age was dropped.“All three of these guys, their kids are growing up without their dad, without their mother. It’s tough going on without them, but it is tougher knowing that there are killers in our community. That’s what it’s scary. Because we have kids out there. Who is next?” Porter says in the video.“If anybody out there can help us bring some kind of closure, please.”jjuha@postmedia.comTwitter.com/JuhaatLFPress read more

Kosovo after talks with UN officials NATO delegation warns against extremist violence

During their visit in Pristina, Lord Robertson and representatives of the Council’s 19 countries deplored the recent violence stressing that it undermined the international community’s support for Kosovo’s reconstruction and development. According to the UN Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) the NATO chief and the Council members met today with UNMIK officials and members of the Interim Administrative Council (IAC) and the Kosovo Transitional Council.Lord Robertson said he had invited the head of UNMIK, Hans Haekkerup, and a delegation representing all Kosovo communities to visit Brussels on 26 April for further talks. Briefing the visiting delegation, Mr. Haekkerup said elections would be held this year, and while there was “a question mark” about Kosovo Serb participation, there were indications that they would take part. read more

Explosion rocks warehouse in Afghanistan UN reports

The blast at a warehouse of the Afghan Construction and Logistics Unit, a non-governmental organization (NGO), reduced 80 per cent of the area’s 200 private homes to rubble, according to a UN spokesman, who cited hospital statistics putting casualty figures at nine dead and 53 injured. The facts behind the explosion are not yet definitively known, according to UNAMA.UN personnel visited the site of the explosion, while the Mission convened a meeting of all UN agencies and international NGOs the area to review needs and provide assistance to victims.The UN Mission personnel went to the site of the explosion for further damage assessment and to determine additional assistance needs. read more

Myanmar UN envoy sees Daw Aung San Suu Kyi Annan urges her

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today welcomed the report from his Special Envoy for Myanmar that he has seen Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, but also remained seriously concerned that she and other democracy leaders were still denied freedom of movement and urged the Government to release them.The Special Envoy, Razali Ismail, met with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi shortly before he left Yangon on Tuesday to wind up his five-day mission to Myanmar, and reported that she is uninjured and in good spirits, according to a spokesman for the Secretary-General.Mr. Razali had been in Myanmar from 6 June under a specific instruction from the Secretary-General to see Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, who had been held incommunicado under “protective custody” since the violent clashes on 30 May between her supporters and pro-government protesters in northern Myanmar.“However, the Secretary-General remains seriously concerned about the fact that Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and other senior leaders of the National League for Democracy (NLD) are still denied freedom of movement,” spokesman Fred Eckhard said in a statement. “He, once again, strongly urges the Government of Myanmar to release her and other NLD leaders from the continued detention immediately and begin a dialogue aimed at national reconciliation without further delay.”At the same time, the Secretary-General called on the international community, and especially countries in the region, to join in his appeal to safeguard the process of national reconciliation and democratization in Myanmar, “which continues to represent the only guarantee for progress towards prosperity and stability,” the statement said. “He continues to believe that the present situation is not merely a question of ‘law and order,’ but rather one that derives from the political aspirations of the Myanmar people who are overwhelmingly in favour of change,” it added.The Special Envoy is expected to visit New York later this month to discuss with the Secretary-General and representatives of the international community, especially the countries of the region, future steps that need to be taken to implement the mandate given by the General Assembly to facilitate national reconciliation and democratization in Myanmar. read more

Annan hails meetings between leaders of India and Pakistan

In a statement released by his spokesman, Mr. Annan welcomed the meetings held in Islamabad yesterday and today between Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee of India with Pakistan’s President, Pervez Musharraf, and its Prime Minister, Zafarullah Khan Jamali.”He considers that these meetings represent another important step forward in the continuing bilateral efforts to improve relations and resolve outstanding issues between the two countries,” the spokesman said. “The Secretary-General urges both sides to continue with these efforts and hopes the summit meetings will give a new impetus to serious and sustained dialogue.” read more

World tobacco demand set to rise until 2010 but at slower rate

The number of smokers is expected to grow from 1.1 billion in 1998 to around 1.3 billion in 2010, an increase of about 1.5 per cent annually, according to the report by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). But consumption per adult is expected to decline by around 10 per cent by 2010, and individual consumption will probably be around 1.4 kilos per year — from around 1.6 kilos in 2000. Applying an aggressive anti-smoking and anti-tobacco policy, consumption per person could even be cut by 20 per cent, FAO said.Cigarette smoking is the most prevalent use, with China leading the world with some 320 million smokers. In India, the second most important consumer, smoking cigarettes accounts for only 25 per cent, with most people consuming the product in non-cigarette forms such as chewing. Tobacco demand in developed countries is declining slowly and will reach about 2.05 million tons in 2010, 10 per cent lower than the 2.23 million tons consumed in 1998, FAO said. This can be attributed to slower population and income growth. Increasing awareness of the damaging health effects together with government anti-smoking measures such as banning advertising and greater taxation have also reduced tobacco consumption.But more tobacco will be smoked in developing countries, where consumption is expected to grow to 5.09 million tons by 2010 from 4.2 million in the late 1990s, an average annual growth rate of 1.7 per cent, significantly lower than the 2.8 percent rate over the previous three decades. read more

TimorLeste has made remarkable progress but still needs help UN official

Presenting a report by Secretary-General Kofi Annan on the UN Mission of Support in East Timor (UNMISET), peacekeeping chief Jean-Marie Guéhenno told the Security Council that Timor-Leste, the poorest country in Southeast Asia, “continues to face significant challenges for which it will require international assistance.” Mr. Guéhenno’s list of challenges included developing public administration capabilities, conducting serious crimes investigations and improving internal security and law enforcement, as well as external security and border control. With regard to Indonesia, he said, “Agreement on the border and practical arrangements for its management have not yet been reached and the potential for tensions or destabilizing actions remains within communities in the Western Districts.” UN military observers have been supporting close relationships between Timorese and Indonesian border personnel, Mr. Guéhenno said, recommending that “a small group of military liaison officers could be retained along the border to discharge similar functions for a further year after 20 May 2004.” Echoing this view, Timor-Leste’s Foreign Minister, José Ramos-Horta, said with the country’s institutions of law and order still precarious, UN peacekeeping would constitute the best guarantee against any recurrence of instability. An extended mandate for the mission, he said, would provide time and space for the country to strengthen its defence and police forces. Some 30 countries participated in the debate, widely hailing Timor-Leste’s recent progress. While welcoming improved relations between that country and Indonesia, delegates urged both to resolve issues related to border demarcation and refugees. The proposed extension of a reduced UN mission for one year beyond the current mandate received wide support, with participants urging a focus on security and policing. Video of the Council meeting [3hrs 21mins] read more

UN atomic watchdog urges Irans accelerated cooperation on nuclear programme

The International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) Director-General, Mohamed ElBaradei, also reported that he could give not assurances about the non-diversion of nuclear material in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), which “continues to pose a serious challenge” to non-proliferation since it has not allowed verification activities for nearly two years. He also stressed that, while the Agency’s efforts to prevent nuclear terrorism have continued to accelerate and expand, “clearly, the circumstances that first led to a plan for protection against nuclear and radiological terrorism have not diminished.” While voicing satisfaction over progress in understanding the nature of Iran’s nuclear programme in connection with its legal obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), Mr. ElBaradei noted that in June the country reversed its decisions to suspend some enrichment related activities undertaken as a confidence building measure. “I have continued to stress to Iran that, during this delicate phase while work is still in progress to verify its past nuclear programme, and in light of serious international concerns surrounding that programme, it should do its utmost to build the required confidence through the Agency,” he said in his introductory statement to the opening of the Agency’s Board of Governors meeting in Vienna. “I would urge Iran, therefore, to continue to accelerate its cooperation, pursuing a policy of maximum transparency and confidence building, so that we can bring the remaining outstanding issues to resolution within the next few months and provide assurance to the international community,” he added. Enriched uranium can be used to make nuclear weapons and the IAEA has strongly deplored Iranian breaches of the NPT, which included a long-running failure to disclose past activities. Mr. ElBaradei has repeatedly said the Agency had no proof Iran’s activities were linked to a nuclear weapons programme and Tehran has consistently denied any such intention. Today he noted that no additional undeclared Iranian activities had come to light since his last report to the Board in June. Iran has also provided new information in response to Agency requests, although in certain instances the process needed to be accelerated, he said. Progress was also made towards ascertaining the source of high enriched uranium (HEU) found at the Kalaye Electric Company and Natanz, in part due to the cooperation provided by other States, and it appears plausible that this HEU contamination may not have resulted from enrichment by Iran at these locations. But the IAEA is continuing to pursue the identification of sources and reasons for such contamination. On Libya, which in December renounced all programmes leading to the production of internationally proscribed weapons, Mr. ElBaradei reported that the North African country had provided prompt access to locations requested, made senior personnel available and taken corrective actions as required by its NPT safeguards agreement. Verification activities confirmed that for many years Libya had pursued a clandestine programme of uranium conversion and enrichment, he added. On the Republic of Korea (ROK), which last month told the IAEA that scientists had produced a minute amount of enriched uranium without government knowledge during vapour laser isotope separation experiments, Mr. ElBaradei said the Agency would continue its investigations and had received full cooperation. But, he added: “It is a matter of serious concern that the conversion and enrichment of uranium and the separation of plutonium were not reported to the Agency as required by the ROK safeguards agreement.” On the Middle East he regretted that there had been no progress in consultations with the various states on the application of full scope safeguards to all nuclear activities there. read more

UN mission in Burundi congratulates people on maturity of referendum vote

The UN Operation in Burundi (ONUB), set up last May to help cement a multi-party, power-sharing government and pave the way to peace in the tiny Central African nation torn asunder by conflicts between Hutus and Tutsis, provided technical and logistical aid to the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) in holding the vote.”The people of Burundi are to be congratulated for the degree of maturity with which they voted in exemplary fashion – those who voted yes and those who voted no, for that is democracy,” Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s Deputy Special Representative Nureldin Satti told a news briefing today in Bujumbura, the capital.CENI said some 90 per cent of the country’s 3 million registered electorate voted with more than 90 per cent casting a “yes” ballot, while about 8 per cent voted “no.”Mr. Satti said he was optimistic that Burundi has the ability to organize the next several steps in the electoral calendar, leading up to legislative and presidential elections.ONUB helped CENI transport nearly 130 tons of voting material by air and land for the referendum and contributed to civic education and to posting some 100 electoral experts throughout the country. It also sent 45 verification teams totalling some 300 people to the 17 provinces on voting day, which was 28 February.These teams noted that the ballot conformed to international standards and that there were no incidents marring the credibility of the process. read more

UN Middle East envoy condemns latest violence in West Bank and Gaza

“Without prejudice to Israel’s right to legitimate and proportional self-defence, UNSCO [the United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process], reiterates the United Nations’ consistent and vocal opposition to extra-judicial killings,” said one of two statements released today by envoy Alvaro de Soto’s office in Jerusalem.”The restraint that Israel has observed, by and large, in the last few months, has been noted. It is to be hoped that, at a time when the Palestinian Authority (PA) is clearly moving to enforce law and order, Israel, and all other parties, will refrain from activities that might contribute to a further escalation of the situation,” the statement added.In an earlier statement condemning yesterday’s Qassam rocket attack, Mr. de Soto said that the incident illustrated once again the imperative and urgency of ensuring security and ending violence and added: “It is understandable that Israel should have felt it necessary to react strongly.”It also said that Mr. de Soto has been following the developments in Gaza over the past 24 hours very closely and notes that Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas is currently in the region.”[Mr. de Soto] hopes that his presence there will lead to energetic action and the early restoration of calm,” the statement said. read more

Afghan election funding shortfall almost filled UN mission reports

The remaining $4.6 million shortfall will not jeopardize the elections, but “clearly, with the election just 10 days away, we’re hoping to see the remaining funding gap closed very quickly,” UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) spokesman Adrian Edwards told a news briefing in Kabul, the capital.“At this time what we are mainly talking about is the need to [promptly] pay bills and settle accounts,” he said. “I think I have made it clear all along that we do expect the full amount to appear.“Obviously when you are running such a vast project as a nationwide election, and where you also have separate elections in every province as well as the parliamentary one, then clearly you want to able to pay your bills early on,” he added. When he raised the alarm on 1 August, there was a $31 million shortfall. Since then more funding began to arrive, most recently, an $11 million contribution from the European Commission and $5 million from Japan.Mr. Edwards gave the current funding breakdown as $115.7 million received and committed, $23.7 million pledged, and $14.9 million carried over from last year. read more

UN national parliaments must cooperate to foster democracy – Annan

“We help nascent democracies to conduct elections and promote transparent, accountable governance,” he told the 114th Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) in Nairobi, Kenya, in a message delivered yesterday by Amir Dossal, Executive Director of the UN Fund for International Partnerships.“We work with countries emerging from a violent past to build democratic institutions and strengthen civil society. In the developing world, we assist one of every three parliaments. We do this because the state of democracy in our world is everybody’s business.”Democracy, he said, “enables internal disputes to be resolved through political means, reducing the appeal of violent extremism.”Mr. Annan noted the important reforms that have taken place at the UN since the last IPU meeting, including the establishment of an enhanced Human Rights Council, the creation of a Peacebuilding Commission to assist countries emerging from conflict and the launch of a UN Democracy Fund, to reinforce the work of the UN system in democracy-building.He also cited the introduction of wide-ranging management reforms to enable the UN to respond to the challenges of the 21st century.“With these and other measures, we are continuing our efforts to build a more effective instrument of service to humankind,” he declared. He noted that last year’s UN World Summit called for strengthened ties between the UN and national and regional parliaments, in particular through the IPU.“Member States recognized that the involvement of parliaments is crucial if we are to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)” and implement the Summit’s decisions, he said referring to the set of targets set by the Millennium Summit of 2000 to slash a host of socio-economic ills such as extreme poverty and hunger, infants and maternal mortality, and lack of access to education and health care – all by 2015. read more

UN General Assembly Committee urges selfdetermination for Puerto Rico

The special committee of the United Nations General Assembly that deals with decolonization issues today adopted a text calling for an expedited process in Puerto Rico to determine what kind of relationship the territory’s population would prefer to have with the United States. The unanimously adopted resolution, sponsored by Cuba, calls for an investigation into the 23 September assassination of pro-independence leader Filiberto Ojeda Rios and violent acts against others. It also calls on the United States to respect fundamental human rights in Puerto Rico, pay for the clean-up and decontamination of areas of the island affected by United States military activities, and address the ensuing serious environmental and health consequences. As in previous years, the special committee’s text called on the President of the United States to release Puerto Rican political prisoners serving prison sentences for more than 25 years for cases relating to the struggle for the independence of Puerto Rico and the demilitarization of Vieques Island, which had been used for combat exercises by the US military. Many petitioners speaking today and yesterday, including representatives of Puerto Rico’s main political parties, supported the text, saying that the island’s current relationship with the United States was deeply flawed and had stunted its socio-economic development and allowed the exploitation of its natural resources by American companies and the United States Navy. The decolonization committee was formally known as the Special Committee on the Situation with regard to the Implementation of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples. read more

Loonie up traders try to gauge progress on fiscal cliff negotiations

Loonie up, traders try to gauge progress on fiscal cliff negotiations AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by Malcolm Morrison, The Canadian Press Posted Nov 28, 2012 4:28 pm MDT TORONTO – The Canadian dollar shed early losses to close higher against the greenback Wednesday amid reassuring words about resolving a looming fiscal crisis in the United States.The currency was ahead 0.29 of a cent to 100.82 cents US. It had been negative earlier with traders inclined to avoid riskier assets in the wake of comments from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid late Tuesday that there had been “little progress” in talks aimed at avoiding the so-called fiscal cliff in the U.S. at the end of next month.Economists say the combination of steep tax increases and spending cuts would significantly cut economic growth and likely push the U.S. back into recession and damage other economies around the world as well.But the tone turned more positive Wednesday morning after House Speaker John Boehner said he was optimistic that a budget deal can be reached with President Barack Obama and the Democrats.Adding to optimism was a remark from President Barack Obama that he believes that members of both parties can reach a “framework” on a debt-cutting deal before Christmas.And an administration official says two of President Barack Obama’s top negotiators on the “fiscal cliff” will meet separately on Thursday with top political leaders.Early loonie weakness also reflected nervousness about another set of negotiations early in the new year that will aim to again raise the U.S. government’s debt ceiling.There are also growing worries that Argentina may default on its debt.Commodity prices were also off the worst levels of the session as January crude on the New York Mercantile Exchange dropped 69 cents to US$86.49 a barrel.December copper fell one cent to US$3.52 while December gold declined $25.80 to US$1,716.50 an ounce. read more

60 of Canadians to travel over holidays to spend an average of

60% of Canadians to travel over holidays; to spend an average of $563: BMO TORONTO – It looks like Santa won’t be the only one on the move this holiday season.The Bank of Montreal (TSX:BMO) says a strong loonie and a relatively stable economy is fuelling a desire by many Canadians to get away over the Christmas-New Year’s period.According to the bank’s 2012 Holiday Travel Outlook released Thursday, some 60 per cent of Canadians plan to travel over the holidays, spending an average of $563 apiece on their trips.The survey found that while some 39 per cent planned to travel within their home province, almost one in five, or 19 per cent, were looking to go abroad.The most popular destination outside of Canada as the United States, with 13 per cent of Canadians heading south of the border.Some three per cent chose Mexico as their preferred destination while eight per cent collectively chose other destinations and 12 per cent said they would be going to other provinces besides their own.Meanwhile, the survey found that those in Atlantic Canada were the most likely to travel over the holidays (80 per cent), while those in Quebec were the least likely (41 per cent).Travellers will be younger, with almost three-quarters or 74 per cent of Canadians under 30 planning to travel compared with 42 per cent of those 65 and over.To help fund travel plans, the report found that Canadians’ use of reward points is on the rise. Two out of 10 Canadians (21 per cent) planned to travel on reward points this year, up seven per cent over last year.“Affordability remains an important factor when deciding on an appropriate vacation destination and reward programs provide a practical and convenient way for more Canadians to take advantage of a broad array of redemption options and upgrade their vacation experience without breaking the budget,” said Nick Mastromarco, director, BMO Bank of Montreal.BMO said the results were from an online survey conducted by Pollara between Oct. 11 and Oct. 16 with a random sample of 1,000 Canadians 18 years of age and over. by Hugh McKenna, The Canadian Press Posted Dec 13, 2012 8:11 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email read more

Marvel circus producer Feld Entertainment to team up on live superhero arena

MCLEAN, Va. – The people who bring you The Greatest Show on Earth will be taking Spider-Man, the Hulk, Thor and the X-Men on a worldwide road show.Feld Entertainment Inc. produces the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus along with shows such as Disney on Ice. It announced a partnership Wednesday with Marvel Entertainment to produce a live arena show.Feld CEO Kenneth Feld tells The Associated Press he expects the show to open in July 2014.Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Feld says production costs will likely exceed $10 million.The Marvel partnership is one of several deals Virginia-based Feld Entertainment has made in recent years to expand its appeal to older kids, especially boys. The company also produces motor sports and monster truck shows. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by Matthew Barakat, The Associated Press Posted Mar 13, 2013 4:49 am MDT Marvel, circus producer Feld Entertainment to team up on live superhero arena show in 2014 read more

Alcoa may curtail quarter of aluminum output as industry confronts low prices

by Ross Marowits, The Canadian Press Posted May 1, 2013 3:52 pm MDT Alcoa may curtail quarter of aluminum output as industry confronts low prices AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email MONTREAL – Alcoa said it may curtail about one quarter of its global aluminum production as the company and its industry rivals continue to adjust to low metal prices.The U.S.-based company said Wednesday it may curtail an additional 460,000 tonnes of aluminum capacity, or 11 per cent of its global output.Alcoa (NYSE:AA) has already idled 568,000 tonnes of production capacity, or 13 per cent of its global network.The company, which has large operations in Quebec, did not say what countries or regions of the world are being considered as part of its 15-month review.“Because of persistent weakness in global aluminum prices, we need to review every option to maintain Alcoa’s competitiveness,” said Chris Ayers, president of global primary products.The company said the latest review is in response to a more than 33 per cent drop in the price of aluminum since 2011.“Any action taken will only be done after a thorough strategic review and consultations with stakeholders.”Alcoa said it will focus on higher-cost plants and those that have long-term risks due to energy costs and regulatory uncertainty.Industry observers say it’s highly unlikely that Alcoa’s Quebec smelters will be affected because they benefit from low-cost energy.But company officials declined to exclude Canada or say how costs compared with other facilities in the world.Alcoa employs 3,100 workers in Canada, including those at Quebec smelters in Baie Comeau, Becancour and Deschambault. They are among 61,000 Alcoa employees in 30 countries around the world.The three plants have annual capacity to produce nearly one million tonnes of aluminum.Alcoa said it will consider a number of alternatives, from discontinuing pot relining to full plant curtailments and permanent shutdowns. Its alumina refining system will also be reviewed, resulting from any curtailments in smelting.Analyst Tony Robson of BMO Capital Markets said Alcoa continues to run “old and high-cost plants” using older technology, particularly in the U.S., Australia and Europe, that have cash costs above the current aluminum price.“Given its cost structure and high debt levels, Alcoa has little choice with this process unless the aluminum price rebounds on a sustainable basis,” he wrote in a report.Robson said the most likely target is the Point Henry smelter in Australia, which has 190,000 tonnes of annual capacity.“Closing another 460,000 tonnes of primary capacity would hasten Alcoa’s declining market share in smelting… and continue the transformation of the company from a metals producer to a fabricator/industrial concern.”Robson said the potential cuts may improve cash flows in the medium term.Analyst Carol Levenson of Gimme Credit said the company’s margins could be hit unless overhead is also cut.She said Alcoa reduced its smelting capacity by 20 per cent in 2009 with an accompanying employee reduction and cost savings.Lower prices have prompted the entire aluminum industry to close, sell or idle high-cost assets.Rio Tinto Alcan (NYSE:RIO) said it continues to review its operations.“The industry is facing significant challenges on a number of fronts but price is certainly a big one,” said spokesman Bryan Tucker, also pointing to energy and raw material costs.The company is selling its Pacific smelters which have 1.6 million tonnes of capacity.“We are the lowest cost producer in the world because of the quality of the assets that we have. Those that aren’t Tier 1 we’ve either already selected for divestment or will continue reviewing them,” Tucker said in an interview.Just this week, the company announced the sale of its 205,000-tonne Sebree smelter in Kentucky to Century Aluminum for US$65 million in cash and debt.Rio has closed smelters in England, Wales and Beauharnois, Que., while operations in Cameroon, France and Norway are running at less than full capacity.About 276,000 tonnes of capacity will be removed when Rio Tinto closes facilities in Shawinigan and Arvida, Que., by the end of 2014. That will be offset by the addition of 60,000 tonnes with the impending opening of a facility using AP60 technology.An expansion in Kitimat, B.C., will increase production to 420,000 tonnes from the current 187,000-tonne output.Meanwhile, Rio Tinto Alcan said its anode operations in Alma, Que., have begun a gradual restart following the accidental death of a worker late Monday. The temporary shutdown didn’t affect aluminum production.Alcoa Fraser Phillips of RBC Capital Markets said Alcoa’s move is not a surprise and should conserve cash and reduce losses, but he said more will be required to change the fortunes of the aluminum market, which has excess capacity.“More concerning is the continued strong growth in capacity, particularly in China,” he said in a report.“We believe more curtailments will be required to slow the growth in capacity and ultimately to begin to reduce inventories before a sustained rebound in price is possible.” read more

National retailer Hudsons Bay Company names Bonnie Brooks to vicechair

TORONTO – After five years, Bonnie Brooks is handing over the reins of the Hudson’s Bay Co. (TSX:HBC) to become vice-chair at the country’s biggest department store.Brooks, 60, has been the retailer’s high-profile president since 2008 and will be succeeded by Liz Rodbell, who was most recently its chief merchant and executive vice-president.The changes, which are effective immediately, will have both executives report to HBC chairman and CEO Richard Baker.Despite the surprise announcement, Baker said it was business as usual at HBC.“It’s important to us that we build a world class team of managers and executives and we thought this was a good time in order to expand our team at the top level,” he said Tuesday in an interview.Brooks, an industry veteran, has been praised for reshaping and rebranding the national retailer over the last few years into an upscale chain that offers high-end clothing, handbags, shoes and accessories.With her at the helm, Hudson’s Bay has also partnered with several new brands and retailers, including Britain’s Topshop.As vice-chair, Brooks will move on to a more “advisory capacity” with the company’s board of directors, the Toronto-based retailer said.“(The new role) really puts Bonnie in a stronger position for us to leverage her talents,” said Baker. “She will be spending a lot of her time on long-term strategies and advising me and working on trends and improving the quality of our stores and the quality of our customer service.”Brooks, who has also been featured in radio advertisements for Hudson’s Bay for several years, will continue to be the face and voice of the chain.“Nothing is changing. Bonnie is not going anywhere. She did such a good job, you get promoted,” Baker said. “She’s going to be expanding that vision to more aspects of our business and less burdened by our day-to-day business.”Prior to joining parent HBC, Brooks was the president and CEO of the Hudson’s Bay department stores. She’s also worked for Asia’s Lane Crawford retail stores, Holt Renfrew, and was editor-in-chief of Canadian fashion magazine Flare.Retail consultant Maureen Atkinson said this executive shuffle is definitely a promotion for Brooks.“It’s good for her certainly and probably the organization, having that kind of knowledge and experience there in a very senior capacity, ” said Atkinson, a senior partner with J.C. Williams Group.“We heard so many promises in the past so clearly she has been able to deliver on really what she said and I think this is just a recognition of that.”Founded in 1670 as a trading company with rights to large portions of what is now Canada, HBC currently has 90 Hudson’s Bay department stores across the country. The company also owns 69 Home Outfitters housewares stores and 48 Lord & Taylor department stores in the United States.Rodbell, 55, has been an executive with HBC since February 2012 after having joined Lord & Taylor in 1985.Baker said the responsibilities of chief merchant will be taken over by several people.He added that the retailer continues to have its eyes on expansion and growing its business. It expects to have five more Topshop locations open in its stores by the end of the year and is turning its focus on its online business.Last week, Hudson’s Bay also opened the largest women’s shoe department in the country at its flagship store in downtown Toronto.Baker said even the highly-anticipated arrival of upscale U.S. retailer Nordstrom next year is of little worry to the retailer.“What they’re going to find is a beautiful Nordstrom store, that has very few promotions and very high prices and very good service,” he said.“We are excited and energized by the fact that the Canadian customer will be able to walk through the value product offering at Nordstrom and come back and visit what Hudson’s Bay’s value proposition is, and we think our customers will be even more excited and energized to shop in our stores after they visit Nordstrom.”Shares in Hudson’s Bay Co. fell 52 cents to close at $16.23 on the Toronto Stock Exchange. The company went public last November. by Linda Nguyen, The Canadian Press Posted Jun 18, 2013 10:15 am MDT National retailer Hudson’s Bay Company names Bonnie Brooks to vice-chair AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email read more

This weeks top 10 paid and free apps for iPhone and iPad

App Store Official Charts for the week ending July 28, 2013:Top Paid iPhone Apps:1. Smart Alarm Clock: sleep cycles & noise recording, Plus Sports2. Where’s My Mickey?, Disney3. djay 2 for iPhone, algoriddim4. Minecraft — Pocket Edition, Mojang5. Heads Up!, Warner Bros.6. Contra: Evolution, PunchBox Studios7. AfterLight, Simon Filip8. Pimp Your Screen, Apalon9. Block Fortress, Foursaken Media10. Free Music Download Pro — Mp3 Downloader, ASPS AppsTop Free iPhone Apps:1. Despicable Me: Minion Rush, Gameloft2. Beemo — Adventure Time, Cartoon Network3. Candy Crush Saga, King.com Limited4. Banana Kong, FDG Entertainment5. The Idiot Test 3, Nexx Studio6. YouTube, Google, Inc.7. Vine, Vine Labs, Inc.8. Google Maps, Google, Inc.9. Can You Escape, Kaarel Kirsipuu10. Instagram, Burbn, Inc.Top Paid iPad Apps:1. Minecraft — Pocket Edition, Mojang2. Where’s My Mickey? XL, Disney3. djay 2, algoriddim4. Block Fortress, Foursaken Media5. Plants vs. Zombies HD, PopCap6. Survivalcraft, Igor Kalicinski7. Breach & Clear, Gun.8. SpongeBob Moves In, Nickelodeon9. Temple Run: Oz, Disney10. Doc McStuffins: Time For Your Check Up!, DisneyTop Free iPad Apps:1. Despicable Me: Minion Rush, Gameloft2. Beemo — Adventure Time, Cartoon Network3. Banana Kong, FDG Entertainment4. Candy Crush Saga, King.com Limited5. PAC-MAN DASH!, NamcoBandai Games Inc.6. Google Maps, Google, Inc.7. Summer Girl Makeover, Ninjafish Studios8. Doctor X — Med School, Kids Fun Club by TabTale9. Pet Rescue Saga, King.com Limited10. YouTube, Google, Inc. by The Associated Press Posted Jul 30, 2013 11:17 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email This week’s top 10 paid and free apps for iPhone and iPad on the App Store read more

Calgarys Equal Energy to be acquired by Petroflow in US230M deal

Calgary’s Equal Energy to be acquired by Petroflow in US$230M deal AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by The Canadian Press Posted Dec 9, 2013 8:34 am MDT OKLAHOMA CITY – Oil and gas company Equal Energy Ltd. (TSX:EQU) will be acquired by Petroflow Energy Corp. in a cash deal valued at US$230 million.Equal Energy’s board has approved the sale, which gives the company US$5.43 per share, which is below Friday’s closing price of $5.74 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.However, it was a 56 per cent premium to the company’s trading price the day before Equal Energy said in March it was pursuing strategic alternatives. Equal’s shares were trading down a penny following Monday’s announcement, at $5.73.The company says it will not to solicit any other bids, and agreed to a US$2 million break fee if it backs away from the deal — the same amount Petroflow will have to pay Equal if Petroflow backs out.In March, it received interest from Alabama-based Montclair Energy LLC., which had put forth a $142-million takeover offer.At the time, Equal said it turned down Montclair’s proposal because the U.S. company was unwilling to wait until a special committee could consider the offer and possible alternatives. Montclair, one of the company’s larger shareholders, upped its bid from $4 a share to $4.85 per share in September.Equal Energy holds a portfolio of oil and gas properties in Oklahoma.Petroflow Energy Corp. and Petroflow Canada Acquisition Corp. is an exploration and production company based in Oklahoma. read more

200M to University of Calgary for medical research

With a dollar-for-dollar match, the province and University of Calgary alumnus Geoffrey Cumming have announced a $200-million donation for medical research at the university. It is one of the largest donations ever made to a Canadian university.The money will be used to study priority areas of brain and mental health and infections, inflammation and chronic diseases.Cumming said he intends the gift to attract the world’s best researchers to Alberta to make significant medical advances.“It transforms lives and what I really want to do is have the science done here but the benefits of that will benefit Albertans, benefit Canadians and benefit Canadians Worldwide,” said Cumming. “Good societies have great education, great health systems and a good environment, so I try to do things in all of those areas.” In honour of the gift, the medical school at the university will be renamed the Cumming School of Medicine. PHD students thanking Geoffrey Cumming and @davehancockmla for today’s announcement @ucalgary #yyc AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by News Staff Posted Jun 17, 2014 1:19 pm MDT $200M to University of Calgary for medical research read more

Indigo CEO Heather Reisman says lifestyle goods will drive growth plans

TORONTO – Despite recent high-profile failures in Canadian retail, Indigo CEO Heather Reisman said Monday that the market is poised for a resurgence and her company is looking to grow.At the company’s annual general meeting in Toronto, Reisman said Indigo Books and Music Inc. is well-placed to navigate the choppy waters that sunk both Future Shop and Target Canada in the past six months.“If you give them a compelling physical experience, customers want to have it,” she said, adding that in-store traffic increased by two per cent in the company’s 2014 fiscal year.Indigo lost $3.5 million in the year ending March 28, 2015, improving on its $31 million loss the year before.Facing online competition and price cuts from rivals at Wal-Mart and Amazon, Indigo is working to widen its appeal beyond books.In the past five years the company has expanded its offerings beyond books and music to include a wide variety of lifestyle items including housewares, electronic devices, and toys and gifts from the likes of Lego and American Girl.The company is now looking to expand that concept to more of its 218 stores while remaining one of Canada’s largest booksellers, Reisman said.She said the company will open a new flagship location in Toronto’s Sherway Gardens mall in February 2016.Indigo has 91 large stores under its own name and the Chapters brand, as well as 127 smaller stores in malls and other shopping centres under the Coles brand as well as others.After closing eight stores last year, Indigo has plans to grow again, Reisman said.“We’re in the mode in looking to expand a bit in smaller markets,” she said. “There is nothing in our portfolio that I see today that we would not want to sustain.”Indigo has invested in its online storefront and offers ebook downloads as well as free shipping to nearby stores.Reisman said Indigo has been more resilient than music or movie retailers because it gives customers easy access to books in whatever form they choose.And unlike music and movies, where consumption has switched from physical to digital, nothing beats the feel of a good book, she added.“When you want to sit back and enjoy a book and actually engage in it, I think physical books are just a great technology,” she said. Indigo CEO Heather Reisman says lifestyle goods will drive growth plans AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by Peter Henderson, The Canadian Press Posted Jun 29, 2015 1:26 pm MDT read more

Valeant confirms its in talks to potentially sell Salix stomach drug business

Valeant confirms it’s in talks to potentially sell Salix stomach drug business by The Canadian Press Posted Nov 1, 2016 4:46 pm MDT Last Updated Nov 1, 2016 at 6:40 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email MONTREAL – Valeant Pharmaceuticals said Tuesday it’s in discussion that may lead to the sale of its core stomach drug business Salix.The comment was issued in response to published reports that the drugmaker is in advanced talks to sell Salix Pharmaceuticals Ltd. in order to trim its hefty US$30-billion debt load.“We are currently in discussions with third parties for various divestitures including but not limited to Salix,” Valeant said in a release. “The discussions may or may not lead to a definitive agreement.”The Wall Street Journal said Tuesday, citing people familiar with the matter, that the Quebec-based company is looking to unload Salix to Japan’s Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. for about US$10 billion.The purchase price includes about US$8.5 billion in cash and future royalty payments to Valeant, the paper said, adding another unnamed potential bidder is also interested.Valeant bought Salix in 2015 for US$11.11 billion. It makes gastrointestinal products like Pepcid for ulcers and Zegerid for heartburn.Valeant’s (TSX:VRX) shares surged on the report, closing up 30.24 per cent per cent, or $7.24, to $31.18 in trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange. In New York, they rose nearly 34 per cent. read more

Shareholders vote in favour of Enbridges 37B Spectra Energy takeover

CALGARY – Shareholders have voted in favour of Enbridge’s $37-billion takeover of Spectra Energy in what will be the largest acquisition of a foreign company in Canadian history.The all-stock deal, if approved by regulators, will bring together Enbridge’s extensive oil-focused pipeline portfolio with Spectra’s sizable natural gas pipelines and infrastructure to form a company that was projected to have a combined value of $165 billion when it was announced in September.Enbridge shareholders voted more than 99 per cent in favour of the deal, while Spectra shareholders at a special meeting voted 98 per cent in favour of the deal.Al Monaco, chief executive of Enbridge, said the company continues to work on regulatory approvals and expects the deal to close in the first quarter of next year.Enbridge says the combined company will have a $74-billion inventory of projects, including the $7.5-billion Line 3 Replacement Project the federal government approved in early December.Under the terms of the deal, Spectra shareholders will receive 0.984 Enbridge shares for each common Spectra share they own, with Enbridge shareholders expected to own 57 per cent of the combined company and Spectra shareholders the rest. Shareholders vote in favour of Enbridge’s $37B Spectra Energy takeover by The Canadian Press Posted Dec 15, 2016 4:15 pm MDT Last Updated Dec 15, 2016 at 8:24 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email read more

Prosperous Oregon considers historic renter protection law

PORTLAND, Ore. – Yesica Sanchez recently found a notice attached to the front door of her two-bedroom apartment that said her rent was almost doubling. The divorced mother held the paper in her hand in a state of shock.“We wanted to faint. After I pay all of my bills, I don’t have anything left to pay that extra amount,” Sanchez said while visiting the apartment of her cousin, who got a similar notice. So did every other resident of the Normandy Apartments in Portland.Oregon has become one of America’s most popular moving destinations, with tens of thousands of newcomers each year drawn by its forests and mountains, its quirky city of Portland and its job opportunities. Oregon set a historical low jobless rate in March of 3.8 per cent.But the inflow has caused a rental housing crisis across the state, with too few homes being built. Families face steep rent hikes or evictions to make way for better-heeled tenants. People have even resorted to living in tents or their vehicles. Now, lawmakers are debating remedies for what House Speaker Tina Kotek calls an “emergency that demands bold action.”In one of the session’s most bitterly contested proposals, the Legislature is considering forcing landlords to pay tenants one month’s rent if they use one of the “landlord-based reasons” for evicting a tenant, and three months’ rent if they violate the new law and issue a no-cause eviction. The bill also reverses a 1985 ban on most rent controls in the state, allowing cities and counties to adopt their own.If it passes, Oregon would be at the forefront in the U.S. in establishing renter protections, said Doug Farquhar of the National Conference of State Legislatures.Rep. Karin Power, a Democrat from the Portland suburb of Milwaukie and one of the bill’s sponsors, said the housing crisis is a statewide problem that calls for a statewide solution.But other lawmakers spoke in opposition, saying the measure would be a disincentive for people to buy or build properties to rent, ultimately worsening the housing crisis.Charlie Tabasko, a realtor in the coastal town of Waldport, was among almost 400 people to submit written testimony, an extraordinarily high number. He said making landlords “bear the burden of society’s inequities” is crazy.Don Moeller, a retiree in Salem, also wrote in, saying senior residential facilities should be barred from increasing rent beyond tenants’ ability to pay, possibly making them homeless. One hundred seniors, the oldest 98, signed Moeller’s letter.“Oregon is in trouble, and that’s why I’m voting yes for House Bill 2004,” Rep. Mark Meek, a Democrat from Oregon City, announced before House members approve the bill by a 31-27 vote.It is now before the Senate. If the Senate approves, the measure goes to Gov. Kate Brown, who recently called the crisis unacceptable.Many U.S. states ban rent control, though Nebraska law allows tenants to recover three months’ rent if they’re unlawfully evicted or if landlords shut off utilities. In Michigan, lawmakers are considering repealing the state’s rent-control prohibition. A similar proposal in California was recently put on hold by its sponsor.In 1971, when Oregon’s population was 2.1 million, Gov. Tom McCall was so concerned about population growth eroding quality of life that he tried to dissuade people from moving to America’s 33rd state.“We want you to visit our state of excitement often,” McCall said in a speech. “Come again and again. But for heaven’s sake, don’t move here to live. Or if you do have to move in to live, don’t tell any of your neighbours where you are going.”Despite those words, Oregon’s population has almost doubled since then to 4.1 million. From July 2015 to July 2016, Oregon was America’s sixth-fastest growing state in percentage population.Finding, and keeping, housing for the 40 per cent of Oregonians who rent has become a dire situation in the woodsy towns in the south, in the mountains, along the Pacific coast and in Portland.Among the most vulnerable, experts say, are seniors, minorities and victims of domestic abuse who can’t afford to move out of the abuser’s home. Historically black Portland neighbourhoods are being lost to gentrification.Home construction since the Great Recession has lagged far behind demand. To meet the current need, 110,000 new housing units — almost six times the number built last year — would have to be constructed. But builders have trouble getting financing from lenders stung by the downturn, said Josh Lehner, an economist with the Oregon Office of Economic Analysis.After Sanchez’s rent doubled from $700, it took many calls and filing of income and credit reports before she found a new home. Outside, painters were already remodeling the complex that was sold to a new landlord.Sanchez and her 5-year-old son moved to Oregon from Oaxaca, Mexico, four years ago, and she fretted about keeping him in a nearby bilingual elementary school. She has a car, so will be able to drive him to school.Yesica’s cousin, Fidelina Sanchez, has been less lucky.She glanced around the apartment she can no longer afford and nervously twisted strands of her ponytail while her daughter played under a religious shrine.“We are still looking for a place,” Fidelina said.___Associated Press writers Julia Shumway in Lincoln, Nebraska; David Eggert in Lansing, Michigan; and Sophia Bollag in Sacramento, California, contributed to this report.___Follow Andrew Selsky on Twitter at https://twitter.com/andrewselsky___This story has been corrected to show the new proposed law would provide one month’s rent payment to tenant for eviction with landlord-based reason, and three months for no-cause evictions. by Andrew Selsky, The Associated Press Posted May 2, 2017 9:31 am MDT Last Updated May 2, 2017 at 5:00 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Prosperous Oregon considers historic renter protection law In this April 22, 2017 photo, a for rent signs is displayed in front of a house in Salem, Ore. Droves of people are moving to America’s 33rd state, drawn by its natural beauty and job opportunities, but the fast growth has created a housing crisis. (AP Photo/Andrew Selsky) read more

Government must have power in approval of infrastructure bank deals Barton

Government must have power in approval of infrastructure bank deals: Barton by Andy Blatchford, The Canadian Press Posted May 19, 2017 12:38 pm MDT Last Updated May 19, 2017 at 2:40 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email OTTAWA – The man who played a lead role in drawing up the blueprint for Canada’s proposed infrastructure bank says the agency should not be completely independent of political oversight.Cabinet needs to have a say in the selection of projects supported through the bank, which is designed to merge public and private cash for infrastructure, said Dominic Barton, chair of the government’s influential economic growth council.The infrastructure bank is a key tool in the Liberals’ economic growth strategy. It’s designed to use $35 billion in public funds as leverage to attract billions more in private investment for large projects, such as rail lines, bridges and transit systems.Earlier this week, Finance Minister Bill Morneau said the federal cabinet will have powers when it comes to the approval of projects under evaluation by the bank. It’s important, he said, for government to protect the interests of Canadians when huge, multibillion-dollar projects are under consideration.Barton, hand-picked by Morneau to lead the council, said the bank must also strike a balance between government and the market.“I think the cabinet has to clearly play a role in saying, ‘OK, we like these priority areas,’ ” Barton, the global managing partner of consulting giant McKinsey & Co., said Friday in an interview with The Canadian Press.“But then in terms of how the actual projects are structured and set up, they can’t play a role in that. That’s got to be done on a market basis … if we want to get some of the private capital to come in and help us be able to do more.”Following Morneau’s remarks, the head of the infrastructure group for one of Canada’s biggest pension funds said he’s worried about the prospect of cabinet needing to sign off on some projects.Andrew Claerhout of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan told a Senate committee hearing this week that private investors like his fund will want to know whether they’re negotiating with the bank or cabinet ministers.“That’s probably the thing that’s given me the most pause,” said Claerhout, whose fund holds about $18 billion worth of infrastructure investments around the world.“I think there needs to be more clarity on what is desired with that because if it is that cabinet gets a final look, that’s very negative, in my view.”He added he could probably “live with” a design that would give cabinet a first look at a project proposal and allow it to decide early on whether it will approve it, before negotiations begin.Barton’s growth council, which has provided advice that has helped shape policy directions taken by the Trudeau government, first unveiled its idea for a so-called infrastructure bank last fall.In its report, the council said when it comes to governance, the bank should be “sufficiently independent to achieve commercial credibility, balanced against governmental accountability.”Barton said it’s helpful the bank is being built former Ontario Teachers CEO Jim Leech — someone who intimately understands what investors are looking for when it comes to the degree of independence as well as investment opportunities.Political opponents have attacked the proposed bank, warning it would force Canadians to pay twice for their infrastructure — first through the public treasury and then through user fees that will generate corporate profits.Some rivals have also argued the use of billions in public money to lure private investment would shift considerable risk onto taxpayers, in the event of cost overruns or defaults.But Barton said the involvement of private investors will reduce the risks. He’d “be worried,” he added, about a plan to only raise government debt with nothing from the private side.The government has also been under fire over recent media reports that Ottawa consulted BlackRock Inc., the world’s largest asset manager, about its concept for the bank.Ottawa also engaged BlackRock to help it assemble some of the world’s most powerful investors to a November summit in Toronto as it tried to promote Canada as an attractive place to invest. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participated in the event.The Liberals have insisted BlackRock was among a broad range of stakeholders that were consulted, including municipalities, provinces, unions and industry.Mark Wiseman, a senior managing director for BlackRock, is also a member of the growth council.Barton said the government needed to get expert views on its bank and that BlackRock will be one of many firms jockeying for a chance to invest in Canada.“I honestly think that’s ridiculous,” Barton said when asked if he thought there’s a conflict of interest.“If BlackRock’s competitive, then they’ll get in. If they’re not, they won’t.”Follow @AndyBlatchford on Twitter read more

UN Security Council condemns any and all outside support to M23 armed

“In this regard, the Security Council expresses deep concern at reports indicating that such support continues to be provided to the M23 by neighbouring countries. The Security Council demands that any and all outside support to the M23 as well as other armed groups cease immediately,” Ambassador Gert Rosenthal of Guatemala, which holds the Presidency of the Security Council for the month of October, said in a presidential statement.“The Security Council calls upon all countries in the region to condemn the M23, as well as other armed groups, and to cooperate actively with the Congolese authorities in disarming and demobilizing the M23 as well as other armed groups and dismantling the M23 parallel administration,” the statement added.The DRC’s eastern provinces of North and South Kivu have witnessed increased fighting over recent months between Government troops and the M23, which is composed of soldiers from the DRC’s national army who mutinied in April. In addition to the violence leading to an alarming humanitarian situation, marked by rape, murder and pillaging, the fighting has displaced more than 300,000 people, including many who have fled to neighbouring Rwanda and Uganda, as well as within DRC.Peacekeepers from the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in DRC (MONUSCO) have been aiding the DRC’s Government troops in their efforts to deal with the M23. Earlier this week, six UN peacekeepers and a local interpreter were wounded in an overnight ambush while returning from a patrol with 12 other peacekeepers near Buganza in North Kivu province after finding the bodies of four civilians.As well as expressing deep concern regarding the deteriorating security and humanitarian crisis in the eastern DRC – caused by the M23 as well as other armed groups – the Council also condemned the M23’s attacks on civilians, humanitarian actors and UN peacekeepers, and its abuses of human rights, including summary executions, sexual and gender based violence and large-scale recruitment and use of child soldiers.It called for perpetrators, including individuals responsible for violence against children and acts of sexual violence, to be apprehended, brought to justice and held accountable for violations of applicable international law. “The Security Council expresses its intention to apply targeted sanctions against the leadership of the M23 and those acting in violation of the sanctions regime and the arms embargo and calls on all Member States to submit, as a matter of urgency, listing proposals to the 1533 Committee,” according to the Council’s presidential statement.The Council’s 1533 Committee deals with an arms embargo which applies to non-governmental entities and individuals operating in eastern DRC, as well as targeted travel and financial sanctions.In the presidential statement, the Security Council stressed the urgency of constructive engagement and dialogue between the DRC and its neighbours, especially Rwanda, and the need to address the underlying causes of the conflict in eastern DRC. It welcomed the efforts of Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, as well as of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the African Union (AU), to restore peace and security to the area. The ICGLR held a meeting at which it discussed the issue of eastern DRC in Kampala, Uganda, last week. “The Security Council takes note of the decisions by the ICGLR and the AU regarding the deployment of a ‘Neutral International Force’ in eastern DRC and takes note of the ongoing coordination efforts between these organizations and the United Nations to clarify the objectives, modalities and means of the proposed Force in relation to MONUSCO,” according to the Council statement.In September, the ICGLR launched, in the eastern DRC town of Goma, the so-called Expanded Joint Verification Mechanism (EJVM). First discussed in June, the mechanism is a technical body, comprising experts from both DRC and Rwanda and those of the UN and AU, to address DRC-Rwanda border security issues.“It further welcomes,” the Council statement read, “the support provided by MONUSCO to the EJVM and encourages, in coordination with ICGLR members, the participation of MONUSCO, as appropriate and within the limits of its capacities and mandate, in the activities of the EJVM and the reporting on any flow of arms and related materiel across borders of eastern DRC.”The Council also called on the Secretary General to continue his ‘good offices’ and to explore, when appropriate, further high-level diplomatic mechanisms to facilitate dialogue between relevant parties, including on the underlying causes of the conflict in the African country’s east.In addition to other methods, the UN chief uses his ‘good offices’ – steps taken publicly and in private, drawing upon his independence, impartiality and integrity – to prevent international disputes from arising, escalating or spreading.MONUSCO, with 19,000 uniformed personnel, is the latest iteration of UN peacekeeping missions that have helped to bring stability and civilian elections to the vast nation after it was torn apart by civil wars and rebel movements. Outside of the east, much of the country has achieved a measure of stability. read more

Deputy UN chief stresses need to advance sustainable tourism as cities continue

In remarks to the Working Luncheon on Sustainable Urban Development and Tourism, hosted by the Permanent Mission of China to the UN, Jan Eliasson noted that growth of urbanization and tourism is a natural consequence of a globalizing, inter-dependent world. And much of the growth in recent decades has been spearheaded by China and other Asian countries.Last September, the Beijing municipal government took the initiative to establish the World Tourism Cities Federation, headquartered in Beijing. In less than a year, membership has grown to 57 cities. “Cities are a driving force for tourism,” the Deputy Secretary-General said, pointing out that international tourist arrivals grew from 25 million in 1950 to over 1 billion in 2012. International tourism revenues have also risen significantly, surpassing the $1 trillion milestone in 2011. “Behind the statistics lies an even greater story – the growth of cities and tourism in Asia and the Pacific,” he added, noting that international tourist arrivals in Asia and the Pacific have grown from just 23 million in 1980 to a total of 233 million last year. “The emergence of Asia and the Pacific in world tourism is testimony not only to the rise of Asia and the Pacific in the global economy but also to the speed and scope of urbanization and globalization,” he stated. “While we celebrate this momentum for growth, we should also pause and ask: Can this remarkable, increase in urbanization and tourism be sustained, economically, socially and environmentally? What are the implications for sustainable development worldwide? …“As we look ahead, how will governments, the tourism industry and local communities work together to advance sustainable tourism?”Mr. Eliasson said that, on the economic front, it is necessary to work together to ensure that sustainable urban development and tourism becomes a driving force for economic growth through job creation, investments and through the impact of sustainable urbanization and tourism on other sectors of the economy.“In short, we must ensure that the fruits of sustainable urban development and sustainable tourism are shared broadly and equitably,” he stated.It is also vital to promote the social and cultural dimension of sustainable urban development and tourism, as well as to protect cultural diversity and to respect local traditions and customs. Turning to the environment, he said city governments, the tourism industry and local communities must work together to protect the ecosystems that provide the foundation for urban growth and tourism. “They must also take measures to address the negative impact of increased urbanization and tourism on the environment, not least by addressing air pollution, congestion, shortages in water supply and lack of sanitation,” he stated.“Let us never forget that damage to the environment threatens the very viability, indeed the survival, of sustainable urban development and tourism.”Noting that tourism employs millions of people across the world, generates commerce and trade and lifts communities out of poverty, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon last month stressed that the industry “can and must play a role in our shared efforts to build a more sustainable world.”In a message to the Global Summit of the World Travel and Tourism Council in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, Mr. Ban said that greening the industry is crucial to its future, and the planet’s.“Last year we reached an historic mark: more than one billion tourists crossed international borders. We must ensure that these movements are a transformative force – a force that builds peace, stimulates the economy, preserves the environment and promotes universal values.” read more

UN health agency ramps up efforts against Tanzania cholera outbreak

“Carrying out social mobilization, including door-to-door campaigns and health education is a key component to educate populations and inform district and community leaders about the disease,” Dr. Rufaro Chatora, the UN World Health Organization (WHO) Representative for Tanzania, declared in a press release. The Tanzanian cholera epidemic – spawned by a massive inflow of Burundian refugees fleeing their country’s political unrest – has claimed 34 lives since the beginning of the outbreak on 10 May. In total, 4,662 suspected and confirmed cases have been reported. Since early April, nearly 100,000 Burundians have fled their country and streamed across the country’s borders into neighbouring states such as Rwanda, Tanzania, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), according to UN estimates. At the same time, the cholera epidemic gained momentum as refugees gathered along the shores of Lake Tanganyika in Tanzania.As a result of the ongoing outbreak, the WHO has announced that it is mobilizing some 164,000 doses of oral cholera vaccines (OCVs) to populations living in high risk areas, including all refugees at the Nyarugusu camp, as well as at-risk Tanzanian communities neighbouring the camp, and identified villages such as Kagunga, Karago and Kigoma Ujiji. Meanwhile, in addition to the OCV campaign, relief and health efforts are also focusing on the provision of safe water, sanitation and personal hygiene as the main cholera prevention and control measures. In the press release, Dr. Chatora explained that additional staff from both the WHO and the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) had arrived on the ground to help support the Regional Health Management Team and facilitate the coordination and preparation of the campaign “in order to reach and protect as many people as we can.” read more

In Cameroon top UN relief official calls for increased support to families

“Deprived and traumatized families fleeing violence in the Central African Republic and Nigeria are being hosted by impoverished but generous communities, themselves facing daily hardship,” the UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Stephen O’Brien, said in a press release.“The Government of Cameroon and communities have been very generous in providing protection and assistance to the displaced. The international community must do more to help alleviate the suffering of thousands of families,” he added.According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), Cameroon has witnessed a four-fold increase in the number of displaced people hosted since early 2014. The unrest in the Central African Republic has led to the influx of 251,000 refugees into Cameroon’s eastern regions, while cross-border attacks and suicide bombings by suspected Boko Haram elements have triggered the recent displacement of more than 150,000 Nigerian refugees and internally displaced Cameroonians in the Far North, the country’s poorest region.“The attacks in the Far North of Cameroon are increasing in frequency. Entire communities have been uprooted from their homes. Tens of thousands of people have lost access to their fields and grazing land due to insecurity. In addition to responding to the life-saving needs of the displaced, I am deeply concerned about a spike in food insecurity in the coming months,” Mr. O’Brien continued.During his visit to Cameroon, Mr. O’Brien met with Government officials and the humanitarian community, to discuss ways of improving assistance to the 1.3 million people chronically vulnerable to food insecurity and malnutrition, often due to the effects of hostile and changing climate.“More than a million people across the country are food insecure; one in five of these families will go hungry without immediate food assistance.” said Mr. O’Brien. “I call on the international community to increase assistance to humanitarian organisations and the Government of Cameroon to better respond to the mounting needs. Refugees, internally displaced persons and their hosts all need more help to better cope with the extremely difficult circumstances. Women and children are particularly at risk.”OCHA estimates that 1.8 million people across Cameroon urgently require the most basic assistance and protection. Meanwhile, the humanitarian community has appealed for $264 million, yet only 42 per cent of this has been received. read more

Syrian journalists murder denounced by UNESCO chief

“It is an unacceptable tragedy for society as a whole when those who contribute to public debate and to the free flow of information are made to pay with their lives for doing their important work,” UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Director-General Irina Bokova said of last week’s killing of Ahmad Mohamed al-Mousa in Idlib, northwest Syria.Mr. al-Mousa, who was murdered by unidentified masked men, was a reporter for the citizen journalist collective Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently (RBSS), which focuses on human rights violations in the region.His murder follows that of RBSS co-founder and Executive Director Ibrahim Abdel Qader who was killed along with Fares Hammadi, Head of Production at Eye on the Homeland, a Syrian media collective, in Sanliurfa, southeast Turkey, last month – also denounced by Ms. Bokova.UNESCO issues statements on the killing of media workers in line with Resolution 29 adopted by UNESCO Member States at the Organization’s General Conference of 1997, entitled “Condemnation of Violence against Journalists.” read more

Thousands in DR Congos Kasais to benefit from UN food nutrition efforts

“These interventions will not only protect vulnerable people, but help revive agricultural production and boost social cohesion in communities affected by the crisis,” Claude Jibidar, the head of the UN World Food Programme (WFP) operations in the country, said Wednesday. Together with the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), WFP will distribute fortified maize meal, legumes, fortified vegetable oil and iodized salt, as well as cash, 18,000 households – whether displaced, returnee or host families – across DRC’s Greater Kasai province. In particular, children aged 6-59 months, and pregnant and breastfeeding mothers will be provided with special nutrition supplement treatments for three months. On its part, FAO will supply vegetable-growing kits – hoe, rake, spade, watering can, and vegetable and fruit seeds – to allow families to eat for two months and sell what they don’t consume. “We are able to ramp up our efforts and work closely together to prevent people, including young children, from dying of hunger and malnutrition,” added Alexis Bonte, the acting head of FAO programme in the country. Also on the cards is trainings on raising guinea pigs as a source of protein; processing and marketing bamboo for firewood, utensils, baskets, canoes and fishing equipment; and setting up vegetable gardens near women’s associations and health centres. The programmes will be rolled out in partnership with the country’s Ministry of Agriculture and local non-governmental organizations.Resources required for the efforts have been made available through a $10 million funding assistance provided by the Government of Belgium. ‘Tragedy’ felt by Congolese people ‘demands’ greater solidarityHowever, despite the initiative, the humanitarian crisis in the region continues to grow and become more complicated. Across the strife-torn Kasai region, formerly a rich maize-growing region, more than 3.2 million people suffer from severe hunger and there is widespread malnutrition among children. The conflict has also driven over a million people from their homes and farmlands. “The tragedy experienced by the Congolese people demands greater solidarity,” said the two UN agencies, underlining the need for lasting peace that allows everyone “to grow their own food, rebuild their livelihoods and secure a more prosperous future.” read more

Tunisia at a turning point stresses UN rights expert

“Tunisia is at a turning point in its post-revolution history,” said the UN Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and association, Clément Nyaletsossi Voule. His statement followed a 10-day visit during which new legislation on the issue was being discussed.“My meetings with various interlocutors allowed me to understand the stakes of the democratic transition,” he noted, welcoming the progress the country has achieved in terms of human rights protection over the past seven years, and the political will shown by the authorities to adopt new laws and establish institutions in line with international human rights standards.However, he expressed deep concern over the current law establishing a National Registry for Enterprises, aimed at combating money laundering and terrorism.Given that the bill creates requirements that would limit the capacity of associations to operate freely, and the important role played by them in the democratic transition, he called for Parliament to exempt associations from the new law. The call was ignored as the bill was adopted last Tuesday, reportedly without further debate.In his statement, Mr. Voule urged the authorities to reconsider the approval of a law he considers “regressive” for Tunisian civil society.He also expressed concerns about reports of arbitrary arrests and disproportionate use of force during the January 2018 protests against the finance law and austerity measures.In addition, the expert cited delays in putting in place some of the institutions established by the 2014 constitution, such as the constitutional court, the new court of auditors and an institution to safeguard human rights. “Without these institutions, the democratic transition, of which the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association are essential pillars, cannot be ensured and might be undermined,” he said. “I truly hope that the democratic transition will be irreversible and lead to a fair and democratic society, in line with the slogan of the revolution,” he added, “employment, freedom, dignity.”The conclusions and recommendations of the Special Rapporteur will be presented during the 41st session of the United Nations Human Rights Council in June of next year. Preliminary conclusions are available here. read more

2009 ends year with strong growth December up 389

·         New car registrations rose in December by 38.9% to 150,936 units.·         Full year registrations down 6.4% to 1,994,999 units, the lowest level since 1995.·         Since its introduction, the scrappage scheme has accounted for over a fifth of all new car registrations and is estimated to represent 20.8% of the December market. ·         Average new car CO2 emissions fell by 5.4% on the 2008 level to 149.5g/km in 2009. “Another tough year awaits the UK motor industry in 2010, with new car registrations expected to be below 2009 levels and only limited recovery in the van and heavy commercial vehicle markets.  Sustaining the progress made in the latter part of 2009 will require stronger demand from fleet and business buyers, alongside the greater availability and affordability of credit and finance,” he continued. For more please see the attached documents.DownloadClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) “The December new car market was boosted by the Scrappage Incentive Scheme and consumers looking to avoid January’s VAT increase,” said Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive. “The 2009 market of 1,994,999 new car registrations was significantly above early expectations and reflects the positive impact of the scheme, due to end in February. 2009 ends year with strong growth, December up 38.9% read more

Music student hopes to bounce his way into record books

Students bounce basketballs in time to music as part of a project by music student Yoshiaki Okita.The sound of a cranked car stereo isn’t always music to people’s ears.It was, however, to Yoshiaki Okita when, last spring, he heard the booming bass line spilling from a vehicle as he waited to cross the street.The loud thumping reminded the first-year music student of a bouncing ball and that got the wheels turning. Okita, who studied music part-time for three years before transitioning to full-time studies, began composing a song whose time would be kept with basketballs rather than a drum.He “tinkered” with his original music for months after getting a draft down in just two weeks. Then he began crafting how it would be performed.There would be a composer, horn section, and three expert ball bouncers trained in percussion to be accompanied by people dribbling to the beat. They would all wear t-shirts emblazoned with the Brock logo.By December, his aptly named “Bouncing Balls” tune tweaked to perfection, Okita began work on another number: a proposal to perform the piece as part of the University’s 50th anniversary celebrations — and perhaps bounce Brock’s way into the Guinness World Records for most balls dribbled in time to music.On Monday, Okita took his place in the Bob Davis Gym with 26 other volunteer basketball percussionists, two trumpeters, a pianist, and Chris Barletta, a percussionist student who served as conductor. Together, they performed Bouncing Balls decked out in their Brock tees, compliments of Alumni Relations.Students bounce balls in time to music composed by student Yoshiaki Okita (fifth from left, first row).Guinness currently doesn’t have a record for most balls bounced in time to music, but Okita is hopeful that may change once the organization sees a video of the event.Regardless, the thudding of balls on hardwood, like that car stereo, was symphonic to Okita.“The highlight was of course to have my music played and every one seemed to enjoy participating, including the youngest one next to me,” he said in an email afterward.“He was good. It was a high.” read more

Student research on display at Mapping the New Knowledges conference

Think of Brock University’s Mapping the New Knowledges Conference as an encyclopedia of graduate student research coming to life.On Thursday, April 7 more than 100 graduate students from across all of Brock’s six academic Faculties, will talk about their wide-ranging areas of research and scholarship at the 11th annual Brock conference organized by the Faculty of Graduate Studies and the Graduate Students’ Association (GSA).There is a full day of sessions and special events scheduled with the hub of activity on the 400 and 300 levels of the Plaza Building and the 300 level of the Cairns Family Health and Bioscience Research Complex.A complete conference schedule along with the abstracts of all presenters is posted at https://brocku.ca/webfm_send/40225Aidan Smyth, GSA president, is presenting at the conference for the second consecutive year.“MNK is a day in which everyone takes a break from working in their offices and labs to come out and learn about each other’s research,” says the master’s student in Applied Health Sciences. “The conference opened my eyes to the wealth of innovative research going on at Brock and gave me the opportunity to learn more about the research projects that my peers and lab mates were working on. ?It’s energizing to meet new students and listen to them talk about their passions and research interests.”The conference opens at 8:30 a.m. when Professor David Gabriel, Applied Health Sciences, will give the keynote address. Gabriel is recognized internationally for his research and teaching in biomechanics and neuromuscular physiology. He was elected in 2010 as an International Fellow of the National Academy of Kinesiology. The academy’s membership is considered a “who’s who list” of the top individuals in the fields of Kinesiology and Physical Education.There are 77 graduate students giving oral presentations in three sets of concurrent sessions and 42 graduate students presenting at two poster sessions. As well, five graduate students are competing in the finals of Brock’s Three Minute Thesis® Contest with the winner advancing to the provincial 3MT® finals on April 14 in Waterloo.The conference will also feature the presentation of the Graduate Mentorship Awards and the Marilyn Rose Graduate Leadership Award. The awards presentation will take place immediately following a Bench Dedication in memory of Marilyn Rose, former FGS Dean, being held at 12:45 p.m., on the pathway between MacKenzie Chown and Cairns Complex.The conference will wrap late afternoon with the GSA Social at Isaac’s.“This is a unique conference — few universities in Canada offer similar opportunities through which graduate students develop their research presentation skills in a welcoming and transdisciplinary atmosphere,” says Mike Plyley, Dean, Faculty of Graduate Studies, who has helped to organize the conference since it was first held in 2006. “While on the surface, MNK is one day in the life of graduate students, it means so much more because it strengthens our alliance as researchers and scholars as we discover new potential ways to work together in making a difference in our world.”Follow the conference at #BrockMNK2016Conference schedule overview8 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. Registration and Breakfast in Plaza 400 Level Mezzanine8:30 to 9 a.m. Welcoming/Opening Remarks, Plaza 400 Level Mezzanine9 to 10:40 a.m. Concurrent Oral Session 1, Plaza Levels 300 AND 40010:40 to 11:20 a.m. Coffee Break and Poster Viewing Session 1, Cairns Complex Level 30011:25 a.m. to noon 3MT® Contest, Plaza 400 Level MezzanineNoon to 12:45 p.m. Lunch, Plaza 400 Level Mezzanine12:45 p.m. to 1 p.m. Marilyn Rose Bench Dedication, Pathway between MacKenzie Chown and Cairns Complex1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Presentation of 2016 Marilyn Rose Graduate Leadership Award and Graduate Mentorship Awards, Plaza 400 Level Mezzanine2 p.m. to 3:20 p.m. Concurrent Oral Session 2, Plaza Levels 300 AND 4003:20 to 4 p.m. Coffee Break and Poster Viewing Session 2, Cairns Complex Level 3004 p.m. to 5:20 p.m. Concurrent Oral Session 3, Plaza Levels 300 and 4005:30 p.m. Graduate Students’ Association Social, Isaac’sClosing remarks, announcement of the 3MT® winner and runner-up and draw prizes read more

A warm welcome to all students from Brock U Chancellor Shirley Cheechoo

It gives me great pleasure to extend a very warm welcome on behalf of Brock University. No matter your race or circumstance, we are delighted to have you here to participate and to share your knowledge. We want you to achieve your full potential, and we are thankful for your safe arrival.We acknowledge that many of you traveled from afar, and I want to say to the parents that we recognize your commitment and the tremendous effort you make. This shows us how important our work is here at Brock. To students, remember that Brock and your parents are here to provide assistance in your development and ongoing education. You must prepare yourself, for you will be challenged, but you will also be inspired and motivated so you can achieve your goals.It is a pleasure to have so many of you here. There are friends waiting to be met, so don’t be shy, go out and meet them. Returning students, remember how you felt on your first day. Say ‘Hi’ to people as you walk down the halls. Enjoy this opportunity to make friends, renew your contacts and enjoy the rich student experience.Remember to be a part of your student council, a group with shared interests, where you can discuss problems, events or changes you would like to see. Bring them to us. We will do what we can to make your studies here at Brock effective and pleasant.I wish you all a successful year in your work here at Brock University.Miigwetch,Shirley CheechooChancellor, Brock University read more

Brock political scientists to host panel discussion on Trump presidency

With President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration fast approaching, Brock University political scientists will be coming together to discuss what a Trump presidency will look like and how it might impact Canadians.The Department of Political Science is hosting a public panel discussion at St. Catharines Public Library Tuesday, Jan. 17 at 7 p.m. to discuss the chaos that has followed the election in November and explore what to look out for as Trump transitions into office.The Rise of Trumpism: What’s Next for the United States, Canada and the World? will examine the past, present and future political landscape and cover themes on nationalism, fascism and misogyny.“I was not surprised by the election results, and from a long career of studying politics, I think there are good reasons why democracies in their declining stages turn to this kind of ruler,” says Brock University political scientist and professor Leah Bradshaw. “Trump is a demagogue, that is to say, a creature of democracy who appeals to the worst elements of democratic popular will. Trump is not an isolated phenomenon. Western liberal democracy is in trouble.”“I plan to discuss what Trump’s election means for the Canada-US relationship,” says Associate Professor Blayne Haggart. “In the worst-case scenario, Trump’s presidency could present Canada with an existential crisis by upending the international rules and norms upon which Canada has based all of its economic and international policies for seven decades.”The event is open to the public but tickets are required and are available through Eventbrite.ca. The discussion will be live-streamed on facebook.com/brockufoss and the moderator will be taking some questions from Twitter with the hashtag #USElectionBrockWhat:   “The Rise of Trumpism: What’s Next for the United States, Canada and the World?”When:   Tuesday, Jan. 17 at 7 p.m.Where: St. Catharines Public Library, Mills Room, 54 Church St.Who:   Panel includes professors from the Department of Political Science:Leah Bradshaw, Professor, Specializes in Political Theory and CitizenshipBlayne Haggart, Associate Professor, Specializes in North American Political EconomyStefan Dolgert, Associate Professor, Specializes in Contemporary Political TheoryDiscussion will be moderated by Marty Mako read more

New Brock library space encourages modern approach to studying

Lying back with a book in hand, Ben Skippen felt at home.Nestled in a giant bean bag chair and immersed in Crime and Punishment, the second-year Media Communications student was lost in literature while enjoying his new study spot on the fifth floor of Brock University’s James A. Gibson Library.Behind him, also making use of the new Children’s Educational Foundation of Canada (CEFC) Commons, students filled rows of tables where they worked to share ideas for various group projects.Students Matt Durham and Ben Skippen enjoy the new Children’s Educational Foundation of Canada Commons, which officially opened to the Brock community Tuesday, March 6.Designed to inspire creative and collaborative activity, the 3,600 square feet of innovative library space made its quiet debut last week, but was officially opened to the Brock community with a ribbon-cutting ceremony Tuesday, March 6.The $460,000 project aimed to create a fresh and modern environment that accommodates a variety of learning styles and encourages both individual and group study with 130 new study spaces and three new group study rooms.The renovation was made possible by a generous donation from the CEFC. The $263,000 gift supported the fifth floor project, while also contributing to Brock’s Archives and Special Collections endowment and the purchase of library resources.University Librarian Mark Robertson said the new CEFC Commons has quickly become one of the most popular spaces for students on campus.“One of the most rewarding aspects of a project like this is seeing how students discover, embrace and interpret the space — and embrace it they have,” Robertson said.Feedback over the past week has been overwhelmingly positive, he said, with many students expressing the desire to see similar renovations on other library floors.The fifth floor project complements the opening of the Matheson Learning Commons in 2008 as well as renovations to the library’s sixth floor completed in 2015.University Librarian Mark Robertson speaks about the future of the James A. Gibson Library during the opening of the Children’s Educational Foundation of Canada Commons on Tuesday, March 6.Brock University President Gervan Fearon said the CEFC Commons is part of the library’s ongoing evolution, which strives to provide students the space they need to not only study but also do creative work.“Without donors, we aren’t always able to make projects like this happen,” he said. “It’s important for us to recognize the contributions of the Children’s Educational Foundation of Canada.”The CEFC Commons provides a “taste of what is possible” for Brock’s library in the future, Robertson said. “The enthusiastic embrace of this space by our students shows the need and the powerful impact modern learning spaces can have on our campus.”Brock Graduate Students’ Association President Shannon Kitchings said libraries should be “playgrounds for everybody,” and that’s what this new space has helped to accomplish.“They should be accessible. They should be inspiring. They should offer a space to encourage all the thoughts possible — the brilliant ones and the impossible ones,” she said. “It should be a place to make mistakes, to make discoveries, to make all kinds of intelligent magic and I really think this new renovation is the perfect place to do that. It is beautiful, light, inspiring, transparent and it is ours and that is amazing.”Brock University Students’ Union President Faisal Hejazi said the CEFC Commons has “already had a tremendous impact on the student body,” which has previously requested more study space on campus.“Several peers have approached me with positive feedback. They feel their voices are being heard and their needs are being addressed.”The new Children’s Educational Foundation of Canada Commons on the fifth floor of the James A. Gibson Library has quickly become a popular study spot for students on campus.Brock students Gursharan Singh, Sagar Prajapati and Umar Altaf claim a study space in the new Children’s Educational Foundation of Canada Commons. read more

Mayfield doesnt regret actions says not cookiecutter QB

BEREA, Ohio — Baker Mayfield won’t change for anyone and refuses to be a “cookie-cutter quarterback.”Cleveland’s outspoken rookie said Wednesday that he doesn’t regret calling former Browns coach Hue Jackson “fake” and he has no intention of changing his behaviour. Following the Browns’ 35-20 win on Sunday in Cincinnati, Mayfield was cold toward Jackson and then said he was unhappy his first NFL coach accepted a job with the Bengals, a division rival.Mayfield’s comments drew criticism and he fired back with a post on Instagram assailing Jackson. Mayfield declined to elaborate about their relationship.The No. 1 overall draft pick said he’s entitled to his opinion, and “although I’m an athlete, I’m not a cookie-cutter quarterback, never have been, never will be. I speak my mind. That’s just how I am, so I didn’t like the (Jackson) move and people don’t have to care. I’m not looking for anybody’s approval.”___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFLTom Withers, The Associated Press read more

Ohio State mens tennis loses heartbreaker to UCLA 43 in NCAA tournament

Courtesy of OSU athleticsThe Ohio State men’s tennis team saw its season come to an end when it lost to top-ranked UCLA, 4-3, in the NCAA tournament semifinals on Monday.The No. 5 Buckeyes had to dig themselves out of a 2-0 hole after they lost the doubles point for the third time this season. Redshirt senior Devin McCarthy and junior Ille Van Engelen lost an 8-3 decision to junior Adrien Puget and redshirt freshman Karue Sell of UCLA before redshirt junior Peter Kobelt and senior Connor Smith lost, 8-4, to Bruins sophomores Marcos Giron and Dennis Novikov.McCarthy then won his 22nd-consecutive singles match to help OSU earn its first point, bringing the score to 2-1. The Buckeyes fell behind, 3-1, though, after freshman Constantin Christ fell to Sell in singles play.OSU won back-to-back matches to even the score, 3-3, and set the stage for a winner-take-all final singles match between Kobelt and Giron.Kobelt took the first set by a score of 6-4, but was not able to sustain the effort needed to send his squad to the finals. Giron won the final two sets by scores of 7-6 (4) and 6-4, respectively.McCarthy and Van Engelen finished their Buckeye careers with the loss to the Bruins. Smith, Kobelt and junior Blaz Rola will compete in the NCAA doubles and singles championships on May 22. OSU ends the season with a 35-3 overall record. read more