The Assembly elections are a mere formality and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has already secured the public’s mandate through the overwhelming response to its Mahajanadesh Yatra, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said on Friday.He was speaking at the commencement of the third leg of the State-wide tour, which entered Ahmednagar district on Friday and is to cover western and northern Maharashtra in the next few days.Taking potshots at the Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), Mr. Fadnavis said: “The results to the election are a foregone conclusion… the few big leaders that the opposition has at the moment, like Ajit Pawar, Prithviraj Chavan, Ashok Chavan and Supriya Sule, must get into the practice of remaining there for a long time to come as it will be impossible to dislodge the BJP in the State and the Centre for the next 25 years.”“Several people ask me what is the need of this Yatra as no pehelwan (political heavyweight) in the opposition party is left to take the field. I tell them that it is the BJP’s tradition to thank the people for their wholehearted support, detail our achievements in the past five years and take a firm resolution to finish unfulfilled tasks,” said the Chief Minister, adding that the erstwhile Congress-NCP government had squandered the good will of the people despite being given a chance to develop the State for 15 years.Promising that every person in the State would have a roof over their heads by 2021, Mr. Fadnavis claimed that no previous government had taken up and fulfilled so many public welfare projects in a span of five years.Mr. Fadnavis said the BJP-Sena government had given ₹50,000 crore in financial aid to farmers in the last five years in contrast to the ₹20,000 crore doled out by the Congress-NCP government during its 15-year regime.Claiming that Maharashtra now topped the country in investment and industry, the Chief Minister said that the government had improved the infrastructure in the rural hinterland, completing 22,000 km of rural roads under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana.Reiterating that the Opposition’s allegation of electronic voting machine (EVM) tampering was “ludicrous”, he said: “They [the Congress-NCP and others] do not realise that it is [Prime Minister Narendra] Modi who is in the minds of every voter whenever he presses the button.”Mr. Fadnavis addressed public meetings in Akole and Sangamner, the bastions of former National Congress Party (NCP) veteran Madhukar Pichad and State Congress chief Balasaheb Thorat respectively.Mr. Pichad and his son Vaibhav Pichad, who is the sitting MLA of Akole, left the NCP to join the BJP last month.Praising the father-son duo, Mr. Fadnavis said: “The BJP has grown in strength in Akole ever since Mr. Pichad threw in his lot with us…Vaibhav Pichad, who is an articulate and knowledgable legislator, will be re-elected by a record margin in the upcoming polls.”
Drilon apologizes to BCDA’s Dizon over false claim on designer of P50-M ‘kaldero’ Duterte calls himself, Go, Cayetano ‘the brightest stars’ in PH politics Canadian vaping study details danger from ‘popcorn lung’ chemical FILE – In this Aug. 21, 2015, file photo, track coach Alberto Salazar watches a training session for the upcoming World Athletic Championships at the Bird’s Nest stadium in Beijing. Salazar, who trained four-time Olympic champion Mo Farah and a number of other top runners, has been given a four-year ban by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. USADA said in a news release Monday, Sept. 30, 2019, that Salazar and Jeffrey Brown were receiving four-year bans for, among other violations, possessing and trafficking testosterone while working at the Nike Oregon Project (NOP), where they trained top runners. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File)DOHA, Qatar — Renowned track coach Alberto Salazar, who trained four-time Olympic champion Mo Farah, along with a gold medalist and other top contenders at this week’s world championships, has been kicked out of the competition after being handed a four-year ban in a case long pursued by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.USADA said in a news release early Tuesday that an arbitration panel decided on the four-year penalty for Salazar and endocrinologist Jeffrey Brown for, among other violations, possessing and trafficking testosterone while training top runners at the Nike Oregon Project (NOP).ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. USADA said it received information from 30 witnesses, including distance runner Kara Goucher and a former NOP coach, Steve Magness. Goucher left NOP in 2011, and in the ProPublica piece, she called Salazar a “sort of a win-at-all-costs person and it’s hurting the sport.” Magness was sent down to Brown’s office in Houston for an L-carnitine infusion to see how effective it was. He left NOP in 2012.After the ban was announced, Magness sent out a tweet that said: “Tell the truth. Own your mistakes. Choose the difficult path.”Farah, who runs for Britain, worked with the Nike Oregon Project while he was racking up six world and four Olympic championships. During that period, UK Athletics did its own investigation into Salazar and gave Farah the OK to continue working with him. Farah parted ways with Salazar in 2017, saying he wanted to move back home.On Tuesday, Farah released a statement saying he has “no tolerance for anyone who breaks the rules or crosses a line.”Salazar also coached Galen Rupp of the U.S., a 2012 and 2016 Olympic medalist, who in the past has strongly denied any wrongdoing.The 61-year-old Cuban born coach was a college star at Oregon, who went on to win four major marathon titles, in New York and Boston, from 1980-82.USADA’s dogged pursuit of him in a difficult case that never directly implicated any of his athletes was a reminder of how track’s doping issues stretch well beyond the Russian scandal that has overtaken the sport over the last several years. The other four Salazar athletes in Doha this week are from Ethiopia (Yomif Kejelcha), Germany (Konstanze Klosterhalfen), Australia (Jessica Hull) and the United States (Craig Engels).USADA said it relied on more than 2,000 exhibits between the two cases and that proceedings included nearly 5,800 pages of transcripts.“The athletes in these cases found the courage to speak out and ultimately exposed the truth,” USADA CEO Travis Tygart said. “While acting in connection with the Nike Oregon Project, Mr. Salazar and Dr. Brown demonstrated that winning was more important than the health and wellbeing of the athletes they were sworn to protect.” MOST READ Ethel Booba on SEA Games cauldron: ‘Sulit kung corrupt ang panggatong’ Bayern Munich humiliates Tottenham 7-2 in Champions League Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next “The Oregon Project has never and will never permit doping,” Salazar said.Nike supported him, putting out a statement saying that the arbitrators’ reports illustrate “the amount of care Alberto took to ensure he was complying with the World Anti-Doping Code.”Hassan said she was aware of the USADA investigation when she joined Salazar’s team “and have always had a clean conscience, knowing we are being monitored to the absolute fullest by USADA and” the World Anti-Doping Agency.“I am saddened by the timing of USADA as it brings my championship out of balance,” she said.The existence of the long-running USADA investigation became public after a 2015 report by BBC and ProPublica that detailed some of Salazar’s practices, which included use of testosterone gel and infusions of a supplement called L-carnitine that can greatly enhance athletic performance.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Matteo Guidicelli had saved up for Sarah G’s ring since 2014? This jewelry designer is also an architect Brown did consulting work for the NOP and was a personal physician for some of the runners.Among the seven runners listed as members of Salazar’s team are Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands, who won the 10,000-meter gold medal on Saturday night, and is entered to run later this week in the 1,500; and Donavan Brazier and Clayton Murphy of the U.S., each of whom are scheduled to run in the 800-meter final Tuesday.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGreatest ever?SPORTSBecoming his own manSPORTSFormer PBA import Anthony Grundy passes away at 40The USADA ban went into effect Monday, and track’s governing body, the IAAF, moved quickly to revoke Salazar’s credential for the final six days in Doha. The Athletics Integrity Unit, which oversees anti-doping in track, notified the NOP athletes that they could not associate with their coach because of his ban.In a statement released by NOP , Salazar said he was shocked by the arbitration outcome, and that he would appeal. He said throughout a six-year investigation, he and his athletes “endured unjust, unethical and highly damaging treatment from the USADA.” Duterte mulling ban on plastic use PLAY LIST 00:33Duterte mulling ban on plastic use01:42Cops track down 4 persons of interest in ambush of DOLE employee00:50Trending Articles02:11Makabayan bloc defends protesting workers, tells Año to ‘shut up’03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games01:38‘Bato’ to be ‘most effective’ CHR head? It’s for public to decide – Gascon02:07Aquino to Filipinos: Stand up vs abuses before you suffer De Lima’s ordeal01:28Ex-President Noynoy Aquino admits contracting pneumonia00:45Aquino agrees with Drilon on SEA games ‘kaldero’ spending issue Becoming his own man DTI creates Marahuyo, a luxe Filipino fashion brand for global buyers View comments
FILE – In this Nov. 4, 2018 file photo Shalane Flanagan of the United States reacts after crossing the finish line third in the women’s division of the New York City Marathon in New York. Flanagan says she is retiring from competitive running to become a coach. She made the announcement Monday, Oct. 21, 2019 saying she has only one regret: “I regret I can’t do it all over again.” (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, file)Four-time Olympian Shalane Flanagan, who ended a 40-year American drought when she won the New York City Marathon in 2017, is retiring from competitive running to become a coach with the Nike Bowerman Track Club.“I have felt my North Star shifting,” the 38-year-old Flanagan said Monday on social media. “My passion and purpose is no longer about MY running; it’s more and more about those around me.”ADVERTISEMENT This jewelry designer is also an architect DTI creates Marahuyo, a luxe Filipino fashion brand for global buyers ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Duterte had wanted Albayalde to take terminal leave — Go PLAY LIST 02:31Duterte had wanted Albayalde to take terminal leave — Go00:54Gordon: Albayalde may still face charges even after retirement00:50Trending Articles02:11Makabayan bloc defends protesting workers, tells Año to ‘shut up’03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games01:38‘Bato’ to be ‘most effective’ CHR head? It’s for public to decide – Gascon02:07Aquino to Filipinos: Stand up vs abuses before you suffer De Lima’s ordeal01:28Ex-President Noynoy Aquino admits contracting pneumonia00:45Aquino agrees with Drilon on SEA games ‘kaldero’ spending issue LATEST STORIES Drilon apologizes to BCDA’s Dizon over false claim on designer of P50-M ‘kaldero’ In a pair of Instagram posts, Flanagan thanked her five coaches, family, friends, teammates and sponsors.“I hope I made myself a better person by running. I hope I made those around me better. I hope I made my competition better,” she said. “I hope I left the sport better because I was a part of it.”A two-time NCAA cross-country champion, Flanagan still holds the American records at 3,000 meters, 5,000 meters and 15K.“My personal motto throughout my career has been to make decisions that leave me with ‘no regrets’…..but to be honest, I have one,” she said. “I regret I can’t do it all over again.” Duterte calls himself, Go, Cayetano ‘the brightest stars’ in PH politics Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next A native of Marblehead, Massachusetts, and the daughter of distance runners — her mother was the first woman to break 2 hours, 50 minutes in the marathon — Flanagan won a silver medal in the 10,000 meters at the 2008 Olympics.Her victory in the ’17 New York Marathon was the first for an American woman since Miki Gorman in 1977; she finished third last year — her third time on the podium in the race. She was fourth in the 2013 Boston Marathon, her best finish in four tries at her hometown race.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGreatest ever?SPORTSFormer PBA import Anthony Grundy passes away at 40SPORTSSan Miguel suspends Santos, Nabong, Tubid indefinitely after ‘tussle’ in practiceBut she said after running Boston in 2018 that it would be her last time.“I’ve broken bones, torn tendons, and lost too many toenails to count,” she wrote. “I’ve experienced otherworldly highs and abysmal lows. I’ve loved (and learned from) it all. Over the last 15 years I found out what I was capable of, and it was more than I ever dreamed possible. Now that all is said and done, I am most proud of the consistently high level of running I produced year after year.” NBA 2019-20: Suspense returns; LA teams seek Hollywood ending Matteo Guidicelli had saved up for Sarah G’s ring since 2014? View comments Ethel Booba on SEA Games cauldron: ‘Sulit kung corrupt ang panggatong’ Becoming his own man Canadian vaping study details danger from ‘popcorn lung’ chemical
Shimla (HP), August 22 (PTI) The Himachal Pradesh cabinet today approved three amendment bills to be introduced in the monsoon session of Vidhan Sabha and decided to withdraw the proposed Food commission bill and Town and Country Planning (Amendment) bill.The cabinet, presided over by chief minister Virbhadra Singh approved the Excise and Taxation (amendment) bill to replace the ordinance promulgated by the government to denotify 16 state highways as major district roads to facilitate opening of liquor vends.The cabinet approved the Transfer of Land Regulation bill 2016 to facilitate the tribals to get loans from scheduled banks by mortgaging the property at district level. It also gave the nod to Himachal Pradesh Single Window Investment proposal and facilitation Bill 2017 to remove the irritants faced by investors.The cabinet dropped the Town and Country (amendment) Bill seeking to delete to clauses relating to real estate developers as these have already incorporated in the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) Bill passed by the parliament.The cabinet also withdrew the proposed Dood Commission Bill.The cabinet decided toincrease the remuneration of teachers appointed by School management Committees (SMC) by 20 per cent, approved development plans for Dharamshala and Nadaun towns, creation of 1000 post of JalRakshak and 300 posts of pump operators in Irrigation and Public Health department for maintenance of water supply and irrigation schemes besides creating 26 posts of ground men in youth services and sports department.A proposal to upgrade the Community Health Centres at Baddi and Jaisinghpur to 50 bedded was also given approval besides opening a fire post at Dehra. PTI PCL SMJadvertisement
Australia pacer Mitchell Starc’s second hat-trick in the same Sheffied Shield match drew rounds of applause from Mitchell Johnson and skipper Steve Smith but the most special reaction came from the wife.Alyssa Healy, Starc’s wife, is an Australian cricketer too and she watched her husband make history online.The 27-year-old Starc will be Australia’s pace spearhead in the Ashes which start later this month. He has so far picked 148 wickets from 36 Tests but has not played any international cricket since June.Starc was rested for Australia’s tour of India but he has found ominous form, days before cricket’s oldest series gets underway.Great win by the Blues. 2 hat tricks in 1 match by @mstarc56 was something special to witness? https://t.co/4Rq5N04nqy- Steve Smith (@stevesmith49) November 7, 2017Seriously 2 hat tricks in the same game @mstarc56 ?? Now time to rip in to the poms- Mitchell Johnson (@MitchJohnson398) November 7, 2017Starc became the eighth bowler and first since 1979 to achieve the feat. R.O. Jenkins, Amin Lakhani, T.J. Matthews, C.W.L. Parker, J.S. Rao, A. Shaw and A.E. Trott had also claimed two hat-tricks in the same match. In fact, Rao and Trott had taken two hat-tricks in the same innings.Starc removed Jason Behrendorff and David Moody with the last two balls of his 15th over. He then returned to see off Jon Wells with the first of his 16th over. The left-arm quick finished with seven wickets to help New South Wales crush Western Australia by 171 runs. Josh Hazlewood, who is almost certain to partner Starc with the new ball, took six wickets.advertisement
This donation was made possible through part proceeds from the staging of the 2017 Guardsman Games, an obstacle course race hosted by the Group, in partnership with the Jamaica National Group. The Bustamante Hospital for Children, in Kingston, is expected to save $28 million in energy costs over the next 20 years, through the installation of a solar energy system.The system, which was donated by the Guardsman Group to power the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit (ICU), is a pilot project facilitated by Future Energy Corporation.This donation was made possible through part proceeds from the staging of the 2017 Guardsman Games, an obstacle course race hosted by the Group, in partnership with the Jamaica National Group.The system, which has already been installed, was officially handed over during a ceremony at the Arthur Wint Drive location of the hospital on Monday (August 20).Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton, thanked Executive Chairman of the Guardsman Group, Kenneth Benjamin, for conceptualising the Guardsman Games, noting that he is pleased that the proceeds “go back to doing good.”“He has ensured that the ICU is benefiting from this solar system which will create savings for us and, by extension, help us to carry out our functions in the environment of limited resources. So, we are always looking for partnerships. We are always looking for the opportunity to benefit in a very constructive way as we seek to advance good public health in our country,” he said.Managing Director of the Guardsman Group, Vinay Walia, pointed out that the solar system will continue to provide green energy for up to 40 years and more.He noted that the system will result in significant savings that can be directed towards the purchase of necessary equipment and infrastructure.“The solar system is expandable and, one of the aims of Guardsman Games, going forward, is to challenge corporate entities and individuals to contribute towards the expansion of this system, so that we can provide reduced energy for other areas of the hospital and, ultimately, continue to improve care given to our nation’s future – its children,” he said.In the meantime, Acting Chief Executive Officer, Bustamante Hospital for Children, Karlene Taylor McKenzie, expressed appreciation for the donation of the solar system.“We are looking forward to the energy savings…as a result of implementation of this system. This will help us to reduce our energy costs as we strive to continue to offer first-class patient care to Jamaica’s most valuable assets – our children,” she said. Story Highlights The system, which was donated by the Guardsman Group to power the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit (ICU), is a pilot project facilitated by Future Energy Corporation. The Bustamante Hospital for Children, in Kingston, is expected to save $28 million in energy costs over the next 20 years, through the installation of a solar energy system.
Christopher Reeve’s children have released the following statement via the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation on the death of Robin Williams.Robin Williams with Christopher Reeve“The Reeve family, like many, will remember Robin for the humor, energy and brightness he brought into our lives through the screen. We will cherish him, though, for the quiet and unwavering support he showed our family through the hardest times. The world knew Robin as a comedic titan, but to our family, he was simply one of our Dad’s dearest friends. From the moment they were classmates at Juilliard, their friendship transformed into a brotherhood that was built on a mutual admiration for the theater, the arts and, most importantly, laughter.“After our father’s accident, Robin’s visit to his hospital room was the first time that Dad truly laughed. Dad later said, “My old friend had helped me know that somehow I was going to be okay.” Robin and his incredible family stayed by our side for the rest of Dad’s life, and long after that as well. He and Marsha Garces Williams joined the Board of the Reeve Foundation, and provided unending support without fanfare or question.“Robin’s unparalleled legacy on screen will last through the ages. But beyond the gift of laughter, he gave our family and the Reeve Foundation the gift of his simple, steadfast friendship. It’s a gift we’ll treasure forever.”Christopher Reeve and Robin Williams met as roommates while studying at Juilliard. While training side by side, their camaraderie on stage blossomed into a friendship that would remain steadfast through each chapter of their lives. Following Christopher’s accident, Robin stayed at his side and was a pillar of support for the entire family.“‘The world has lost a tremendous activist and artist, and an inspiration for people worldwide. I have lost a great friend.’ Ten years ago, Robin Williams shared those words when Christopher Reeve passed away,” said Reeve Foundation President & CEO, Peter Wilderotter. “It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing of a dear friend, former board member and advocate for our community. While the world knew Robin Williams as an Oscar-winning actor, we knew a different side to the man whose smile was as big as his heart.“To share a familiar and beloved story: When Christopher was first hospitalized, Robin Williams arrived in his room, dressed as a doctor, reprising his role from the movie Nine Months. ‘He announced that he was a proctologist and had to examine me immediately. For the first time since the accident, I laughed,’ as recounted by Christopher in his autobiography.“Without hesitation, Robin joined the Reeve Foundation Board of Directors and immediately assumed the role of advocate for our community. For his dedication and unwavering support, the Reeve Foundation honored Robin in 1998 at A Magical Evening with the inaugural “Human Spirit Award” and then recognized him again in 2007 at an event in Los Angeles Even his attendance at events resulted in a surge of supporters reaching out to contribute to the Reeve Foundation mission.“While our hearts ache with the loss of our friend, it is unlikely Robin would want us to mourn his passing with silence, but to celebrate his life through laughter. Together, let’s remember Robin for the man who made the world laugh.”Source:ChristopherReeve.org
Hong Kong: A group of Hong Kong activists face jail after being convicted Tuesday on colonial-era “public nuisance” charges for their role in organising mass pro-democracy protests that paralysed the city for months and infuriated Beijing. The convictions followed a trial that has renewed alarm over shrinking freedoms under an assertive China which has rejected demands by Hong Kongers asking for a greater say in how the financial hub is run. Nine activists were all convicted on Tuesday of at least one charge in a prosecution that deployed rarely-used colonial-era public nuisance laws over their participation in the 2014 Umbrella Movement protests, which called for free elections for the city’s leader. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USIt is the latest blow to strike the beleaguered pro-democracy camp which has seen key figures jailed or banned from standing as legislators since their civil disobedience movement convulsed the city but failed to win any concessions. Among the most prominent members of the group on trial were sociology professor Chan Kin-man, 60, law professor Benny Tai, 54, and Baptist minister Chu Yiu-ming, 75. The trio founded the pro-democracy “Occupy Central” movement in 2013, which joined the student-led Umbrella Movement a year later that brought parts of the city to a standstill for months. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential pollsAll three were found guilty of conspiracy to commit public nuisance. Tai and Chan were also convicted of incitement to commit public nuisance although all three were acquitted of incitement to incite public nuisance. Of the remaining six defendants — a group of younger protest leaders, including two sitting lawmakers — all were convicted of at least one public nuisance charge. In an unusual move prosecutors tried the group under Hong Kong’s common law system, which carries a much steeper sentence than statutory public nuisance laws. Each protest leader could now face up to seven years in jail, rather than three months had the charges been brought under statutory law. Judge Johnny Chan ruled that the 2014 protests, which took over key intersections for many weeks, were not protected by Hong Kong’s free speech laws because the demonstrations impinged on the rights of others. “The unreasonableness of the obstruction was such that the significant and protected right to demonstrate should be displaced,” he said. “The act was one not warranted by law.” The defendants remain on bail with the court expected to continue hearing mitigation arguments in the coming days before handing down sentences. There were emotional scenes on Tuesday afternoon as the oldest defendant, Reverend Chu, delivered a statement in which he described the dock as “the most honourable pulpit of my ministerial career”. He warned Hong Kong’s leadership against ignoring youth-led calls for greater democratic freedoms. “The bell tolls. It gives out a warning sound, that something bad and disastrous is happening,” he said. In a submission sent to journalists fellow defendant Shiu Ka-chun added: “I want to warn the authoritarian government, even if you kill all the roosters, you cannot stop the dawn’s arrival.” Human rights groups and critics hit out at the convictions, saying the use of the vaguely worded public nuisance laws — and wielding the steeper common law punishment — would have a chilling effect on free speech in Hong Kong. “Hong Kong courts, by labelling peaceful protests in pursuit of rights as public nuisance, are sending a terrible message that will likely embolden the government to prosecute more peaceful activists,” said Maya Wang, a senior China researcher at Human Rights Watch. Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong, said it was “appallingly divisive to use anachronistic common law charges in a vengeful pursuit of political events which took place in 2014.” Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang fired back at those criticisms, saying other countries would also have brought such a prosecution to “maintain order”. “The central government resolutely supports (Hong Kong) in punishing the main organisations and planners of the illegal Occupy Central movement in accordance with the law,” he told reporters. Hong Kong enjoys rights unseen on the Chinese mainland, which are protected by the 50-year handover agreement between Britain and China, but fears are growing that those liberties are being eroded as Beijing flexes its muscles. At the trial, prosecutors argued that the mass protests had caused a “common injury done to the public”, who had been affected by the blockage of major roads, and that the leaders of the movement deserved to be punished. In his verdict Judge Chan denied his ruling would impact the ability of Hong Kongers to protest. The Occupy movement highlighted widespread frustration, especially among the young, over Hong Kong’s direction but failed to win any reforms from Beijing.
MUNICH — The Latest on the international security conference taking place in Munich (all times local):11:50 a.m.German Chancellor Angela Merkel is defending European powers’ decision to stand by the Iran nuclear deal, describing it as an “anchor” allowing the West to exert pressure.U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence accused Germany, France and Britain of trying to “break” American sanctions on Iran and called on them to follow Washington in pulling out of the nuclear deal.Merkel told the Munich Security Conference Saturday the split over Iran “depresses me very much,” but downplayed the substance of the differences.She said: “I see the ballistic missile program, I see Iran in Yemen and above all I see Iran in Syria.”But “the only question that stands between us on this issue is, do we help our common cause, our common aim of containing the damaging or difficult development of Iran, by withdrawing from the one remaining agreement? Or do we help it more by keeping the small anchor we have in order maybe to exert pressure in other areas?”___11:45 a.m.Egypt’s president has called on Western countries to boost efforts at tackling extremist ideology in online media and mosques.Speaking at the Munich Security Conference Saturday, Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi says countries must “tackle websites that are inciting hatred and spreading extremist and terrorist narratives among communities in the Islamic world and in the West.”He also said authorities should “be very mindful of what is being promoted at houses of worship,” adding that extremists should not be allowed to preach. He underlined his efforts in Egypt to control the sermons in mosques.Egypt has wide-ranging restrictions on free speech.El-Sissi also mentioned that in the terrorism context, the failure to reach a fair and final settlement in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict represents the main source of instability in the Middle East.___11:15 a.m.German Chancellor Angela Merkel is calling on China to join international disarmament negotiations after the collapse of a Cold War-era treaty on nuclear weapons in Europe.The U.S. earlier this month announced that it was pulling out of the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces treaty, accusing Russia of violating it. Moscow followed suit, strongly denying any breaches. The U.S. administration also worried that the pact was an obstacle to efforts to counter intermediate-range missiles deployed by China.Merkel told the Munich Security Conference Saturday that the U.S. withdrawal was “inevitable” because of Russian violations. But she noted the end of a treaty conceived “essentially for Europe” leaves Europe trying to secure future disarmament to protect its own interests.The Associated Press
In a message to the Association of Caribbean States (ACS) in the Haitian capital, Port-au-Prince, on Saturday, Mr. Ban called for the international community to join forces to seek out “common solutions to common problems” like global warming.At the UN climate change talks that recently wrapped up in Poznan, Poland, he had appealed for “bold, urgent steps” to address the issue. That event marks the half-way point in efforts to reach agreement on a successor pact to the Kyoto Protocol, the legally binding regime for reducing greenhouse gas emissions whose first commitment period ends in 2012.The Secretary-General stressed that the region serves as a prime example of the key role played by nature and climate on all aspects of life.“As our climate becomes more dangerous and unstable, so, too, will life on these islands,” he said in the message, which was delivered to a seminar on climate change and the environment by Joel Boutroe, the UN Humanitarian and Resident Coordinator for Haiti.The Caribbean is “particularly vulnerable” to the increasingly extreme weather events spurred by climate change, Mr. Ban said, stressing that efforts to help developing countries adapt to such fluctuations must be stepped up.He also underscored the need to curb disaster risks, with over 90 per cent of all disaster deaths taking place in developing nations.“The poorest – those least responsible for global warming – are likely to suffer first and worst from the consequences of climate change.”The Secretary-General said that ‘greening’ the global economy can help to pull the world out of the current economic crisis, with funding for lower-carbon projects potentially stimulating growth.“Economic growth need not be tied to the growth of greenhouse gas emissions,” he noted. “But to get from here to there, we need to harness political leadership from every sector of society and from every nation” to achieve a breakthrough at the UN climate change conference next year in Copenhagen, Denmark, where negotiations are slated to end. 15 December 2008Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has stressed the importance of political will and leadership in tackling the “quintessential global threat” posed by climate change.
“The Secretary-General believes the election provides Togo with a chance to emerge from a difficult political transition as a united and peaceful nation,” a statement issued by his spokesman said, citing fatal clashes last weekend between supporters and opponents of the ruling party.”In light of the many concerns already raised about the electoral process, he urges authorities to do all within their power to ensure that citizens are able to vote freely and peacefully to ensure a credible and transparent outcome,” the statement added.”He reiterates the UN’s readiness, following a peaceful electoral process, to work with all segments of the society to promote national reconciliation and socio-economic development.”Mr. Annan has been closely following the political situation in Togo ever since the death of President Gnassingbe Eyadema on 5 February, calling on the country to respect its own constitution, which calls for the President of the National Assembly to become acting president until fresh elections are held within 60 days.Instead, Mr. Eyadema’s son, Faure Gnassingbe, a cabinet minister, was appointed Head of State shortly after his father’s death, and the constitution amended. When Mr. Gnassingbe stepped down at the end of February, after the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) imposed sanctions, Mr. Annan pledged support for the political transition.
Tomorrow’s quadripartite discussion in Monrovia – including the participation of officials from the neighbouring Governments and representatives of the UN Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) and the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) – will assist the security of the region, as well as address the sources of conflict, including return of refugees and distribution of humanitarian aid, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Côte d’Ivoire, Albert Gerard Koenders, told UN Radio.UNOCI and UNMIL reinforced their patrols after an attack last month by armed elements in Petit Guiglo, in Côte d’Ivoire’s western region. Blue helmets have deployed to Petit Guiglo, and are supporting Ivorian forces and protecting civilians through ground and air patrols.Security is a primary concern as Ivorians prepare for the 21 April local polls. A 2010 presidential election, meant to be a culminating point in the peace process, resulted in months of violence when former President Laurent Gbagbo refused to step down after losing to Alassane Ouattara, who finally took office in May 2011.“If you have elections then tensions will rise,” said Mr. Koenders, who is also the head of UNOCI.“Our mandate is to assist Ivorian actors to ensure that in all those different constitutes there are peaceful elections, and also calling on politicians to remain calm and really have open and free and transparent elections,” Mr. Koenders noted. He added UNOCI also provides technical support to the polls through support to the independent electoral commission.UNOCI has been supporting the reunification and stabilization of the West African country, split by civil war in 2002. The Security Council extended its mandate by one year in July 2012, but it is possible that its responsibilities might be revised when the 15-member body discuss UNOCI this year.“We are slowly in a situation of transition in the mission,” said Mr. Koenders, who is at the UN Headquarters this week to discuss the situation in his region and to defend the proposed Mission budget for the upcoming year. He depicted UNOCI as focusing on four factors: security, confidence-building, human rights and job creation. As a peacekeeping mission, Mr. Koenders said, UNOCI is creating a “security net” for Ivorians to take over their security with less assistance from the UN.The UN is also assisting capacity-building measures to better unify the army and to create more confidence between the army and the gendarmerie.Mr. Koenders noted the Mission’s work in support of respect for human rights and equitable justice, which “requires an investment and political willingness from Ivorian authorities with support in a technical way from us.” He added that justice must be equitable and “independent of the political affiliation of those who are suspected of serious crimes.”To assist the Ivorians, the UN is supporting the Government and partners to establish “catalytic programmes to create jobs, return of social service and so on” so that “increasingly the Ivorians see the dividends.” Economic growth in Cote d’Ivoire is predicted to reach 9 per cent this year, Mr. Koenders said, “but in many areas it is important the people see the difference.”
The Middle Eastern country is host to some half a million Palestinian refugees, who have lived there for decades after fleeing their homes in the aftermath of the 1948 war. It is estimated that all of them are now directly caught up in the conflict that has raged in the country for more than two years.Prior to March 2011, when the uprising against President Bashar Al-Assad began, Palestinian refugees were already among the poorest communities in Syria, with 27 per cent of the population estimated to be living below the poverty line – $2 per day – and over 12 per cent unable to meet their basic food needs.“Before the crisis, we were providing social protection to Palestinian refugees classified as poor,” said an UNRWA staffer who works on relief and social services issues in Syria. “We were providing subsidies and relief assistance to poor refugees and we were leading development initiatives aiming at reducing poverty and addressing the problems of vulnerable groups,” she said in a recent interview with the UN News Centre.The conflict has affected humanitarian access and disrupted education and health services, exacerbating stress and uncertainty in refugee communities, according to UNRWA, which has provided basic services, and at times emergency assistance, to Palestinian refugees in Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, the West Bank and Gaza for over 63 years. In Syria, the Agency has reported that increasing numbers of Palestinian refugees are being killed, injured or displaced amid the intensifying violence in the country, where more than 70,000 civilians have already lost their lives since the conflict began.In early March, five Palestinian children were among the casualties when they were caught by incoming gunfire and shelling. The previous month, 12 Palestinian refugees were killed by heavy weaponry in the Damascus suburb of Yarmouk; five of them were members of the same family.UNRWA has cautioned that the Palestinian refugees are unable to move around safely and face severe restrictions owing to escalating threats from shelling and armed clashes, exacerbating vulnerabilities that existed prior to the Syrian conflict.From development assistance to emergency aidThe conflict has changed the way UNRWA staff work, particularly as the Agency’s tasks have evolved from providing regular services – ranging from education to health needs – to delivering emergency assistance such as distributing cash, food and medical supplies.Amid the escalating conflict and numerous operational challenges, UNRWA has been working to keep schools, clinics and food distribution centres open. Its 3,600 staff inside Syria, who live and work among refugee communities, are equally affected by the conflict. Struggling to meet the critical needs of those they serve, they do so often under circumstances of significant personal risk, including kidnappings, disappearances and car-jackings.The way UNRWA staff work has “completely changed,” said a staffer from Homs. “We shifted immediately to emergency response.” She recalled that before the conflict, staff would begin the day by carrying out the Agency’s regular services.Currently, however, one of the most important tasks is to ensure the safety of staff, which means starting the day by reviewing the security situation, advising staff on their movements and on whether to stay indoors or to come to their offices. “The biggest challenge is that we don’t have communications in Homs – mobiles, Internet, landlines – so this is an example of how our life has changed,” she stated.The conflict has led the Agency to explore new and more creative ways to distribute its assistance. For example, UNRWA provides some refugees with ATM cards to enable them to go and withdraw their assistance from private banks in safer areas, when it becomes too dangerous to go to one of the Agency’s offices.Staff members also send refugees text messages informing them of the timing and locations of ATM card and food distributions, and cooperate with other partners such as the World Food Programme (WFP) to deliver food assistance in areas experiencing armed violence.The Agency operates in an increasingly challenging environment, in which staff face threats on a daily basis. Communications are regularly constrained by Internet and phone outages, further adding to the operational challenges. Inter-city mobile phone connections as well as international landlines are also down sometimes.Education in particular has been disrupted since most UNRWA schools have been deemed unsafe because they are in areas that are too dangerous, have been damaged in the fighting or are accommodating internally displaced persons (IDPs). There are some 8,400 IDPs sheltering in 21 UNRWA-managed facilities in Syria, as of 29 May, of which 87 per cent are Palestinian refugees. The Agency reported that increasing numbers of refugees are seeking shelter at UNRWA facilities and refugee camps in Hama, Homs, Aleppo city and Latakia.Meanwhile, 10 out of 23 health centres were closed last week, including eight in Damascus. Several health centres are compelled to reduce their hours of operation due to inaccessibility for staff and patients alike. Constrained by funding shortageThe efforts of UNRWA staff have also been constrained by a shortage of funds, which have not kept pace with the needs of the refugees which have grown exponentially over the course of the conflict.“They need more and we are not able to meet their minimum needs,” said another staffer from Damascus. “We are working all the time, and I’m sure that the concerned are working seriously on fundraising and meeting refugees’ needs, but there are half a million refugees in need for help and our resources are very limited.”Addressing a humanitarian forum in February, UNRWA Commissioner-General Filippo Grandi highlighted the vulnerability of the Palestinian community in Syria and called on all donors to honour the pledges they made to assist the Agency. Total budget for January to June 2013Of the $1.5 billion UN-wide humanitarian appeal for Syria issued in January, $90 million was for UNRWA’s relief efforts over the first six months of the year. To date, the Agency – which is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions from UN Member States – has received some $78 million. Another key problem is that, unlike Syrian nationals, the Palestinian refugees are limited in their options to flee the country owing to their status. The UN estimates that over 1.5 million people have fled the escalating violence in Syria and taken refuge in neighbouring countries. According to UNRWA, this includes some 63,200 Palestinian refugees who have fled to Lebanon and Jordan. Thousands more have fled to Turkey and Iraq.“It’s not easy for the Palestinian refugees to flee,” said one staffer. “There are movement restrictions with regard to Palestinian movement [outside the country]. The only open border, for the time being, is Lebanon.
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. — Isaiah Tisdale scored 18 points, Jeromy Rodriguez added 14 with eight rebounds and four assists and ETSU beat North Dakota State 79-61 on Saturday.Mladen Armus scored nine points and grabbed 13 rebounds with four assists, Tray Boyd III added 13 points and D’Andre Bernard scored 10 off the bench for the Buccaneers (5-2), who shot 59 per cent to 40 per cent for the Bison.Jarius Cook scored eight straight and the Bison closed to 62-55 on his 3 with 6:59 to play, but Patrick Good’s 3 capped an 11-3 run for a 73-58 Buccaneers’ lead and ETSU scored six straight in the final 2:25.The Bison led 10-9 on Tyson Ward’s dunk, but Good’s 3-pointer put ETSU up for good, 12-10, and the Buccaneers led 39-27 at halftime.Rocky Kreuser scored 13 points, Ward scored 11 points with four assists and Cook 10 for North Dakota State (2-4).The Associated Press
The house was bought for £1.4m in 2007 in Ms Chapman’s name – but within a year transferred into their joint names. It is now thought to be worth £1.7m.The relationship finally ended in 2016, when the judge found Ms Ladwa gave back her £75,000 engagement rings.Ms Chapman also sued for the return of what she said were loans, including expensive designer shoes, bags and jewellery by Cartier, Christian Dior and Louis Vuitton, and the proceeds of sale of the Aston Martin, but the judge ruled she could keep them. An unemployed female law graduate has won half of the £1.7m home she lived in with her ex-girlfriend after arguing she played the role of a “housewife” in the relationship.Shree Ladwa, 43, was gifted expensive jewellery and hundreds of thousands in cash during a 16-year relationship with her businesswoman ex, Beverley Chapman, 46.Ms Chapman worked to fund their luxury lifestyle, paying off the mortgage, buying her an Aston Martin for her birthday and proposing with a diamond ring on a Monte Carlo clifftop. But the “tempestuous” relationship foundered, leading to a bitter county court battle over their £1.7m former home near Chingford, Essex, as she accused Ms Ladwa of never doing a “proper day’s work”.Ms Ladwa, meanwhile, claimed she was entitled to half the property, like any other “housewife” in a traditional “divorce” battle. That was their intention all along, she said.Arguing that Ms Ladwa should get nothing, Ms Chapman complained she was used as a “cash cow” by her ex, who had pressured her into putting the house in joint names. Beverley Chapman outside Central London County Court Credit:Paul Keogh Ruling on the case, Judge Stephen Murch found that it was their “common intention” on buying the house that it would be jointly owned. And he rejected Ms Chapman’s claim that she only transferred the house into joint names because of Ms Ladwa’s “undue influence”.”Having seen Ms Chapman give evidence, I cannot accept that Ms Ladwa was the kind of person who could make her act against her will,” he said.He added: “Unfortunately, I was left with the impression that Ms Chapman has convinced herself that her version of events is to be preferred, regretting what she now perceives to have been undue generosity when she was in a relationship with Ms Ladwa.”Central London County Court heard the couple began dating in 2000 and they lived together from very early on in their relationship.Ms Chapman worked in her family’s successful building business, while Ms Ladwa was a third-year law student at university.Her degree did not lead to a permanent job, Ms Chapman’s lawyers told the court. The home in Chingford, EssexCredit:Paul Keogh Ms Ladwa’s only income was a £25,000-a-year allowance from her mother and Ms Chapman said it was only her ex’s incessant nagging that led her to put the house in joint names.She had loaned almost £400,000 to Ms Ladwa over the years, the court also heard. Her barrister, Anthony Geadah, said it was a relationship of “love and affection” and Ms Chapman had merely been honouring a “promise” to a partner of many years when she agreed to put the house in joint names.Comparing the case with a divorce battle, he said Ms Ladwa was “effectively the housewife”, while Ms Chapman was out making money for them to live on.Ruling on the case, Judge Murch said the house had been bought largely with money from their joint bank account, including the proceeds of sale of their previous home.The case was considered in a three-day hearing at Central London County Court in January, and the judge’s ruling only now made public. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
A driver who allegedly hit and seriously injured a pedestrian before fleeing in November made a first appearance Wednesday in Clark County Superior Court.Sarah Marie Willman, 34, pleaded not guilty to hit-and-run injury. Judge Bernard Veljacic set bail at $10,000, which Willman posted, according to court records.Vancouver police were dispatched shortly after 8 p.m. Nov. 23 to the 7800 block of Northeast Fourth Plain Boulevard for a report of a vehicle that hit a pedestrian. A white Nissan Altima struck a man in the crosswalk and fled the scene, according to an affidavit of probable cause.The pedestrian, Bernard Polinsky, was breathing but unresponsive while lying in the left lane of eastbound Fourth Plain near Northeast Vancouver Plaza Drive, according to the affidavit. He was taken to PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center and treated for broken ribs, cuts and scrapes.Witnesses reported that Polinsky walked south across Fourth Plain in the crosswalk from the southeast corner of the intersection against the red light. A car ahead of the Nissan nearly hit Polinsky, and the driver honked their horn, according to the affidavit. The Nissan, slightly behind that car, then struck him.After the Nissan pulled over, the driver told witnesses “she can’t be there” because she was partying earlier. Despite witnesses telling her she should stay, the driver fled the scene, the affidavit said.
Something for the weekend: Negotiating a new pay deal agreement with employees can involve the input of a trade union, as well as numerous communications between all of the involved parties to iron out the finer details. The Australian Federal Police (AFP), however, took a different stance when it introduced a pop-up window on an internal criminal investigation database which advocated why affected police officers should accept its proposed deal.The pop-up message, which had to be acknowledged before it could be closed, encouraged police officers to accept a proposed enterprise agreement. The message was displayed on an internal computer system in the run up to the trade union Australian Federal Police Association (AFPA) official member ballot on 10 July 2017.The pop-up box sought to highlight the key points of the proposed enterprise agreement. It read:“YesI get a pay rise nowI keep my leave entitlementsI get paid for the hours I work”The message also looked to deter AFPA members who would be voting from refusing the deal. It said:“NoI don’t get a pay rise nowMy current enterprise arrangement still appliesBargaining process will recommence”According to the AFPA, the pop-up message was removed within four hours.The final vote on the enterprise arrangement resulted in 80.88% of members refusing the proposed pay deal, in alignment with the recommendation from the AFPA. The participation rate was 87.2%.The trade union stated on its Facebook page: “We do not believe support for the proposed [enterprise agreement] is in the best interests of members of the AFPA.“This strong result gives us a clear mandate to go back to the AFP and firmly defend the rights and conditions of our members.”Angela Smith, president at the AFPA, said: “I am continually being contacted by members who are expressing concerns about both the way AFP is relaying information to members and about the agreement itself. Late last week, the AFP used an operational computer system to push their industrial message.“At face value, this was a blatant misuse of a key internal criminal investigative system that was quickly abandoned after our association and our members questioned the ethics of this approach. This type of management tactic has contributed to a growing sense of unease among our members.”Here at Employee Benefits, we can see how these pay negotiations may have strayed into murky digital waters. Hopefully the AFP and the AFPA will reach a mutual agreement soon.
MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – Police have arrested a Mount Sinai employee after he allegedly sexually battered a patient.Miami Beach Police took 42-year-old Christian Vidal into custody for an incident that took place at the hospital on Nov. 7, 2018.He worked as a mental health technician at the hospital located in the area of Alton Road and Sullivan Drive.Vidal bonded out on $10,000.Mount Sinai officials released a statement following Vidal’s arrest: “Mount Sinai’s top priority is the safety of our patients, visitors and employees. Mount Sinai Medical Center cannot comment on matters regarding patient privacy, ongoing investigations and legal proceedings. To the extent that we are aware of an incident, the appropriate authorities are contacted immediately and have our full cooperation.”Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Many of them held signs; some read ‘Close the Camps’ others ‘Reunite Families.’ For many of the protesters, the thousands of miles between Sitka and the border is no excuse not to be vocal. (Photo by Nina Sparling, KCAW – Sitka) (Photo by Nina Sparling, KCAW – Sitka) “We’re standing at the Roundabout of Halibut Point Road and Sawmill Creek Road,” said Kevan O’Hanlon, one of several Sitkans who gathered at the traffic circle near downtown to express their outrage at the treatment of migrant children in detention centers. “So it’s where we get most of our traffic and we’re just standing, waving, holding signs, seeing a lot of people we all know.” “If you’re driving around this roundabout and you think ‘I can’t close the camps,’ you can actually ask the people that can to do so,” she said. “You have the right and privilege to do so.” That drive to do something runs in strong in one Sitka family: Margot O’Connell’s. O’Connell carried a sign today. Her mom, Tory O’Connell was on her way back from a trip to Clint, Texas, to try and see the migrant detention center for herself. Levi Albertson said, “I’d like to see every citizen come out and see this isn’t who America is or who should be.” He hopes the demonstration catches the eye of locals. “I said to my husband I have to go back for solidarity,” Burness said. “In the long term we have to be on the right side of history and in the long term this is going to be the wrong side of history. And I don’t want to be on the wrong side of history. I want to be on the right side of history.” (Photo by Nina Sparling, KCAW – Sitka) “Honestly more than anything I hope my neighbors see it,” he said, referencing some of the comments he’d seen online earlier. “I don’t think they’d be okay with it if it were their kids getting locked up. I think one of the big things that we lack is empathy for the other.” (Photo by Nina Sparling, KCAW – Sitka) And the immediate audience was mostly Sitkans driving to or from lunch, and a few tourists. But many of the protesters hoped to catch the eye of representatives in Washington D.C. and Juneau. Mandy Evans distributed copies of letters Sitkans could send to their representatives expressing their concern and desire for change. “It’s important to be visible,” she said. Visibility, she hopes, can help to counteract the narrative that this isn’t a problem that affects Sitkans. “It affects everyone,” O’Connell said. The demonstration followed a series of heated exchanges online after the event was posted to community Facebook group ‘Sitka Chatters,’ but the noontime gathering remained calm. Demonstrators held their signs and waved at tour buses winding around the roundabout. Michael Mausbach was among those protesting. “Just because we’re on an island with 14 miles of road in the North Pacific doesn’t mean we can’t advocate for children in other parts of this country,” Mausbach said. “It reflects on us as well.” “She has the ability to take action and she does it,” O’Connell said. She thinks the work her mom does is important in a moment when there are so many who are more directly affected by this and don’t have the privilege to advocate. Sitkans gathered during lunchtime on Tuesday, July 2 to bring visibility to their concern about current immigration policy. (Photo by Nina Sparling, KCAW – Sitka) And visible the protesters were. So much so that one cruise ship passenger rushed off her tour bus to join them. Janice Burness calls New Jersey home and is in town for one day only. The border crisis maybe thousands of miles away, but that hasn’t stopped Sitkans from expressing their disapproval for current immigration policy. As part of a day of action, during the lunch hour today, a group of about two dozen Sitkans gathered to protest family separation and the detention of migrant children. Burness gets back on the cruise ship tonight. And just as the protest wrapped up in time for everyone to get back to work, the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General released a report calling for DHS to address what it called “dangerous overcrowding and prolonged detention” at several of the facilities. For Maggie Gallin, the issue is personal. Her family migrated to the United States in previous generations. “I feel an obligation,” she said, “to give some kind of a voice to the kids who are being held.” Mostly, she hoped that other Sitkans saw the protest.