If we have to start blocking roads

first_imgAPTN National NewsBritish Columbia chiefs are threatening blockades if the province doesn’t start to deal with outstanding title and rights issues.This after a recent B.C. Supreme Court ruling that stated First Nations were not property consulted when a ski resort was incorporated as a village.Calling it an injustice, chiefs in the area now demand the province stop ignoring their concerns and sit down and negotiate.APTN National News reporter Rob Smith has this potentially explosive story.last_img read more

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After 2018 floods Keralites want climate change to drive poll narrative

first_imgKochi: With memories of last year’s devastating floods still fresh in the minds of people of Kerala, they want the issue of climate change to be a dominant theme of the electoral discourse in the run-up to Lok Sabha polls beginning April 11. A total of 483 people lost their lives in the August 2018 floods, which were the state’s worst in a century. According to the Kerala government, one-sixth of the state’s total population was directly affected by the deluge and related incidents. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’ The residents now want the political parties to take up climate change as one of the main issues in the upcoming general election. “I am 100 per cent certain about the need for climate change to be one of the main discussion points in the impending elections,” said Arun K Nair, a senior management executive with a leading hospital group in Kochi. “As a Keralite who has enjoyed the most optimum climatic conditions for over four decades, the plight of flood victims in other parts of the country was more like a tall tale for me, but only until I witnessed the floods in Kerala last year,” he said. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&K Arun’s relatives, living in nearby Aluva, were among those hit hard by the floods. According to a UN report released last year, which assessed the damage caused by the floods in Kerala, the state would need about Rs 31,000 crore for recovery and reconstruction. Thiruvananthapuram-based writer K S Manu said the floods were a time when people realised the incapacity of politicians as majority of the rehabilitation work was undertaken by young volunteers. He said the deluge was a man-made disaster which was allegedly caused by “an eccentric political decision when more than 22 dams were opened one by one.” The floods not just led to loss of lives, but also loss of property and means of livelihood, he added. Manu alleged that the state government had made a “conscious effort” to divert people’s ire by creating new political issues like the entry of women of menstrual age into Lord Ayyappa temple in Sabarimala. “Justice will be denied to people unless the general political discourse is changed. It should be based on green politics and modern concepts of a welfare society,” he said. Manu also questioned the sincerity of politicians in handling such issues. “Whether it is Left or Right, a natural disaster means funds, and funds mean bribes and misappropriation,” he said. Referring to the failed rehabilitation of victims of 2004 tsunami, which ravaged the south west Kerala coast, Manu asserted that politicians and politics will not change anytime soon. Citing a report released by the IPCC last year — Global Warming of 1.5 C, noted Indian climate expert Chandra Bhushan said a 2 degrees Celsius warmer world will have devastating effects on communities, economies and ecosystems. Bhushan, who is also the deputy director general of New Delhi-based advocacy group Centre for Science and Environment, urged the politicians to listen to the people and take steps to minimise the impact of climate change. In a speech in September last year, United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres had referred to the devastating Kerala floods to highlight the urgency of the climate crisis, which, he said, was nearing the point of no return. The UN chief had also emphasised on the need to step up efforts to reverse the course of climate chlast_img read more

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Delhi Police adopts different methods to redress complaints of citizens

first_imgNew Delhi: In the police stations of Delhi, the grievances of complainants were redressed in different manners. Apart from filing FIR, the city police also referred the complaints to other agencies or with proper counselling, cases were compromised between two parties.Police sources told Millennium Post that (till March) more than 7,000 FIRs were registered. As many as 4,351 lost reports were lodged and copies were given to the complainants. More than 1,140 cases were referred to other agencies. “As many as 15,461 cases were compromised after city police properly counselled two parties involved in the case to resolve the matter at initial stage. After mutual understanding, these cases were compromised,” said sources. While other actions were taken in 5,619 cases. Earlier, Millennium Post already reported that more than 45,000 complainants with their grievances visited city police stations till March this year. Sources further told that there were 39,800 complaints which were related to different natures including sexual assault, robbery, kidnapping, hurt, theft, quarrel, cheating, forgery and others came. In a recent meeting, the Police Commissioner reviewed the status regarding handling of complaints at police stations and prompt registration of cases. Sources further added that 31,891 complainants were referred to police officers by Public Facilitation Officers. According to Delhi Police, they have taken a conscious decision to ensure fair and truthful registration of crime and it has helped in devising proper strategies to tackle crime in the city. Along with modern investigative techniques, traditional beat-level inputs played a major role and also in its prevention and detection in organizing resources as per ground in ensuring better service delivery to the citizens. Recently, in a meeting to review the redressal of grievances received through Centralized Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System (CPGRAMS), which was chaired by Chairman, Public Grievances Commission, it was also told that officials should listen to the public and their grievances and not let them wait for so long. Sources further said that more often than not, the grievances are not being heard properly by the police officers, Investigating officers enquiring into the matter or not allowed to meet the SHO and supervisory officers. “One patient hearing to the complainant at the initial stage strengthen the trust of the public in the police,” Deputy Secretary said in the meeting.last_img read more

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Moroccan Player Aziz Bouhaddouz Joins Saudi Arabias Al Batin

Rabat – Saudi Arabia keeps eying Moroccan international footballers. Moroccan footballer Aziz Bouhaddouz has officially joined Saudi’s Al Batin club.Al Batin announced Bouhaddouz’s transfer on Twitter on Wednesday, August 22.???? ?? ???? | ?#?????_???????_???????????? pic.twitter.com/rkkAWGARl6— ???? ?????? ??????? (@albatinclub) August 22, 2018The club wrote that the transfer was signed, owing to the support of Turki Al Sheikh, the president of Saudi Arabian Football Federation. Bouhaddouz, who left FC St Pauli for Saudi Arabia’s Batin, also played with the Atlas Lions in the 2018 World Cup.????? ?? ????? | @Turki_alalshikh????? ????? ?????? “??????”#?????_???????_???????????? pic.twitter.com/KestMSeTCi— ???? ?????? ??????? (@albatinclub) August 22, 2018The footballer, however, scored an own goal against Morocco in its first World Cup game against Iran in the final minutes of the game, which ended 0-1.The Atlas Lions left the tournament after the first round. Many Moroccans felt the team was unlucky in referees’ use of video assistant referee (VAR) in the country’s other two games against Portugal and Spain.Bouhaddouz started his career with FC Dietzenbach and moved in 2004 to play with SpVgg 03 Neu-Isenburg. The footballer then spent three seasons with FSV Frankfurt.Saudi Arabia has shown notable interest in Moroccan footballers lately, convincing Morocco’s star Noureddine Amrabat to join Saudi Arabia’s Al Nassr.Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal also signed Achraf Bencharki in January from Wydad of Casablanca. However, the footballer may leave the Saudi team to join France’s RC Lens in the coming days.Saudi Arabia’s Al Wahda also offered MAD 6 million to recruit Moroccan football player Badr Banoune, who plays currently for Raja of Casablanca, Morocco.Recently, Atlas Lion Karim El Ahmadi signed with Al Ittihad Jeddah for a two-year contract.However, Saudi Arabia does not seem to be a favorite destination for Moroccan football fans as they believe that the teams are not strong enough to help them in their careers. read more

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Lankans not affected in Italy quake

The Consular Affairs Division of the Ministry of External Affairs will render all possible assistance to the public to obtain information about their next of kin in the affected areas. According to the initial reports that the Embassy of Sri Lanka received from the Civil Protection Agency of Italy and the Sri Lankan community in the affected areas, no loss of life or casualties among the Sri Lankans have been reported. The Ministry of External Affairs says there has not been loss of life or casualties reported among Sri Lankans following the earthquake in Italy.The Ministry of External Affairs and the Embassy of Sri Lanka in Rome, Italy have been monitoring the situation in the aftermath of the earthquake that struck with a magnitude of 6.0 on the Richter scale at 4 am on May 20, 2012, affecting parts of the Italian regions of Bolonga and Modena. However, the Embassy of Sri Lanka in Rome has been instructed to closely monitor the developments and assist the Sri Lankans, if affected, in all the means possible. read more

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Government opposition in war of words on LG polls

The Government and the opposition argued in Parliament today on the failure to hold the Local Government (LG) elections.Opposition Parliamentarian Dinesh Gunawardena accused the Government of intentionally postponing the elections. However Minister of Provincial Councils and Local Government, Faiszer Musthapha, insisted that there was no attempt to intentionally postpone the election.He said that an issue on delimitation had resulted in the polls being postponed. Minister Faiszer Musthapha said that once the issues on delimitation are resolved, steps will be taken to hold the election. (Colombo Gazette) read more

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UN experts decry torture of Rakhine men and boys held incommunicado by

Children at Thet Kel Pyin Muslim Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp in Sittwe, the capital of Rakhine state, play in the child-friendly space. (2019), by © UNICEF/Nyan Zay HtetThey cited Naing Aung Htun as a case in point. Held incommunicado from 8-21 August, soldiers allegedly jolted Mr. Htun with electric shocks until he confessed to ties with the Arakan Army.“It is essential for detained people to be able to communicate with the outside world, especially with family members and their lawyer”, the UN experts said. “We are especially concerned because incommunicado detention may facilitate torture.”They also expressed concern over the practice based on reports that at least 15 men in custody were killed due to their alleged association with the Arakan Army. The military says that it is investigating these deaths, to which the experts call for the results to be made public and for any perpetrators identified, to be held accountable.On 8 August, the Myanmar military rounded up Mr. Htun and around 50 others in Buthidaung, northern Rakhine.Five men were arrested and held incommunicado on suspicion of associating with the Arakan Army. On 13 August they appeared in Buthidaung court and were charged under section 50 (a) of the Counter-Terrorism Law 2014. Four of them were released on 27 August. Naing Aung Htun’s father, who visited him in prison on 22 August, said his son sustained injuries to his face, was unable to chew and complained of headaches, chest and back pain. He received medical treatment in a civilian hospital before being transferred to a military hospital for three days and was then returned to detention. He was charged with an additional offence, on 21 August.“There must be an investigation into the allegation that Naing Aung Htun was tortured, and he must receive appropriate medical attention”, said the UN experts. “His right to a fair trial must be upheld, such that any confession he made as a result of torture should be excluded from evidence against him.”And the incommunicado detention of five men arrested in Kyaukyan village is not an isolated occurrence, said the independent experts, citing several other cases of Rakhine men and boys who have been charged with terrorism offences. Two years ago, a spike in targeted alleged human rights abuses of mainly-Muslim Rohingya overseen by the Buddhist majority government of Myanmar, forced hundreds of thousands of Rohingya to flee across the border into Bangladesh.The three UN experts presenting their findings are Yanghee Lee, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar;  Agnes Callamard, Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions; and  Nils Melzer, Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.Special Rapporteurs are appointed by the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council to examine and report back on a specific human rights theme or a country situation. The positions are honorary and the experts are not UN staff, nor are they paid for their work. “The practice of incommunicado detention must be immediately brought to an end. Detainees’ right to a fair trial, including access to a lawyer, must be upheld,” the UN Special Rapporteurs said on Monday.In custody since the outbreak of armed conflict in northern Rakhine and Chin last December, the experts stressed the need for “a credible independent investigation into the allegations of torture and inhuman treatment, deaths in custody, and reliance on forced confessions in cases involving Arakan Army-related allegations”. “All perpetrators of such violations must be held accountable”, spelled out the UN experts, adding, “we are distressed by the use of incommunicado detention where individuals are suspected of being associates of the Arakan Army” insurgent group. read more

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Trop de radios dentaires augmenterait le risque de tumeur au cerveau

first_imgTrop de radios dentaires augmenterait le risque de tumeur au cerveauSelon une récente étude américaine, les personnes qui font régulièrement l’objet de radiographies des dents présenteraient un risque accru de développer une tumeur au cerveau. Une découverte qui suggère d’éviter de pratiquer de tels examens tous les ans.Si le risque de s’exposer trop souvent aux rayons X lors d’examens médicaux a déjà été pointé du doigt, c’est une nouvelle alerte que viennent de déclencher des chercheurs américains. Selon leur étude publiée aujourd’hui dans la revue américaine Cancer, les personnes qui se prêtent régulièrement à des radiographies dentaires seraient plus enclines à développer des tumeurs au cerveau. Pour arriver à cette conclusion, Elizabeth Claus de l’université Yale et son équipe ont analysé des données recueillies auprès de 1.433 patients américains de 20 à 79 ans souffrant de tumeurs au cerveau de type méningiome.À lire aussiDengue : symptômes, traitement, prévention, où en est-on ?Ces tumeurs se forment dans la membrane qui enveloppe le cerveau et la moelle épinière. Mais celles-ci s’avèrent la plupart du temps bénignes et se développent peu rapidement. Toutefois, elles peuvent provoquer des incapacités et induire des risques mortels dans certaines conditions. D’où l’importance d’identifier les facteurs de risque. Or, en étudiant les données des patients, les scientifiques ont constaté que ceux qui ont subi tous les ans un examen radiographique des dents et ont été ainsi exposés à des rayons X présentaient un risque 1,4 à 3 fois plus élevé de développer un méningiome qu’un groupe témoin constitué de patients en bonne santé.Néanmoins, le taux de prévalence dépend du type d’examen dentaire qui a été mené, les rayons X pouvant être utilisés de différentes façons, et de l’âge du patient, souligne l’étude relayée par l’AFP. Si les personnes qui vont chez le dentiste sont maintenant exposées à des radiations moins importantes qu’auparavant, cette découverte devrait encourager les patients comme les praticiens à réexaminer les raisons qui motivent un tel examen, selon les chercheurs. “L’étude nous offre l’occasion parfaite pour accentuer la vigilance en matière d’utilisation des rayons X pour les dents qui, comme beaucoup d’autres facteurs de risques, peuvent être atténués”, estime ainsi Elizabeth Claus.A ce jour, l’association dentaire américaine recommande qu’un examen dentaire soit pratiqué sur les enfants tous les ans ou une fois tous les deux ans, sur les adolescents tous les dix-huit mois ou trois ans et sur les adultes tous les deux ou trois ans.Le 10 avril 2012 à 10:21 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

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Money to Burn Should You Buy an NES Classic

first_imgStay on target Money to Burn: Should You Buy Mac Tonight Merch?Money to Burn Poll: Should You Buy a Resident Evil 4 Chainsaw Controller? Conspicuous consumption. It’s a way of life, especially if you’re a nerd. While it’s easy enough to be a complete person not defined by your interests or #brand allegiances, that’s boring! These days there are countless toys and props and plastic for geeks to spend their hard-earned(?) cash on. In fact, there’s so much, it can be hard to decide what’s actually worth buying.Any true fan will know the rarer the nerd swag the cooler it is, and you won’t find too many authentic rare loot drops at your local department store. For that, you’ll need to head to auction sites like eBay. But again, with so many choices, how can you figure out the best nerd items to snag when you have Money to Burn?The NES Classic. Everybody wants it. Nobody actually has it. Last year Nintendo made dreams come true when they put out a little replica console that could play 8-bit hits like Super Mario Bros. and Metroid. But then they dashed those dreams across the rocks by making the device almost impossible to find.And every day that goes by your chance of purchasing an NES Classic goes down. Nintendo stopped manufacturing them back in April. Scalpers have picked up much of the existing stock, and stores that do still sell them like ThinkGeek bundle them with plastic garbage you don’t need or want but are still forced to buy. At this point, you’re better off just cutting your losses. Try to buy a SNES Classic instead when that launches since it has better games anyway. Or build your own retro box.But if you’re still hoping against hope to someday own an NES Classic, eBay remains your best bet. You should still expect to pay more than the original $60 asking price, but if you look around and hop on auctions early you might be able to minimize the extra cash you spend. SNES Classic fervor might also reduce demand for the NES Classic. Of course, the opposite could be true.So if you really need that retro gaming fix and the hypothetical Nintendo Switch Virtual Console isn’t good enough, should you buy an NES Classic Edition if you have Money to Burn? Let us know! Should You Buy an NES Classic?Yes (Money!)No (Burn!)VoteView ResultsCrowdsignal.comShould You Buy an NES Classic?Money to Burn is Geek.com’s ongoing series of polls. We put up a geeky eBay listing, talk about it, and leave it up to you whether or not the physical item is worth buying (Money) or is just cheap trash (Burn). And of course you should leave a comment explaining your rationale. Then be sure to keep coming back to Geek.com to vote in the latest poll. Dispose of that income, you dorks!last_img read more

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Vin Diesel in Talks to Star in LiveAction Bloodshot Film

first_img Hellboy Poster Releasaed, Vin Diesel’s Bloodshot & More Comic Movie NewsSony set to get Harbinger cinematic universe Stay on target Hollywood mega-star Vin Diesel is current in talks to star in Sony’s Bloodshot live-action film, according to TheWrap. Bloodshot will be the first of five films based on characters from Valiant Entertainment.Bloodshot is a nanite-enhanced super soldier who is tasked with finding or eliminating super-powered individuals called “psiots.” In order to keep him obedient, the secret government organization known as Project Rising Spirit implants Bloodshot with false memories before each mission. Bloodshot eventually breaks free of Project Rising Spirit and begins waging a one-man war against the organization. The character was created in 1992 by Kevin Van Hook, Don Perlin, and Bob Layton.Valiant’s comics are decidedly more mature than either Marvel or DC. Thankfully, Sony plans to make Bloodshot an R-rated film. According to insiders, the film will take inspiration from 80s sci-fi movies like Total Recall, Terminator, and Robocop.For those who may not know, Valiant Comics was a rival to Marvel and DC Comics back during the 90s comic book boom. After the speculation bubble burst, Valiant was sold off to Acclaim who itself went under several years later. The company returned in 2012 as Valiant Entertainment and brought back many of the characters it created in the 90s. Valiant has sold 80 million books in its lifetime.Sony plans to release two Bloodshot movies and two films based on Harbinger. The fifth movie in Sony’s plans, Harbinger Wars, will bring together both franchises. Harbinger Wars is based on the comic book event of the same name. The first film out of the gate will be Harbinger, where Bloodshot would appear as a villain before starring in his own movie.Bloodshot is being produced by Neal Moritz and Valiant Entertainment CEO & Chief Creative Officer, Dinesh Shamdasani. Moritz and Diesel have previously worked together on Fast and Furious. Dave Wilson is attached to direct the film and Eric Heisserer will write the screenplay. Heisserer is also writing the screenplay for Harbinger.Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.last_img read more

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Jodrell Bank Observatory Named UNESCO World Heritage Site

first_img These Stunning Images Will Make You Want to Go to SpaceNASA Space Telescope Resumes Operations After Gyroscope Glitch Stay on target Jodrell Bank Observatory in England has been named as the UK’s newest UNESCO World Heritage Site.Famous as the home of the Lovell Telescope—the world’s third-largest steerable radio scope—the station was established in 1945 by astronomer and namesake Bernard Lovell.In the seven decades since, the University of Manchester-owned observatory has played an important role in the research of meteors, quasars, pulsars, masers, and gravitational lenses.It was also heavily involved with the tracking of space probes at the start of the Space Age.The Lovell Telescope became operational in mid-1957—just in time for the launch of the Soviet Union’s Sputnik 1 artificial satellite. And good thing, too, as it was the only instrument able to track Sputnik’s booster rocket by radar.“Jodrell Bank is more than just a relic from the post-war flourishing of research technology,” according to UK ambassador to UNESCO Matthew Lodge. “It is also a beacon and center of excellence for world-leading research and education, reminding us that there is far more to the Universe than meets the eye.“[Its] rich scientific heritage bears testimony to the UK’s leading role in science research worldwide,” he said in a statement.There are three other active telescopes on site, including the Mark II, completed in 1964. Jodrell Bank Observatory is also the base of the Multi-Element Radio Linked Interferometer Network (MERLIN) facility.Today, the grounds serve as global headquarters of the Square Kilometer Array, a radio telescope project that aims to build the world’s largest telescope—comprised of a network of instruments in South Africa and Australia.“I am delighted that Jodrell Bank has become the UK’s 32nd UNESCO World Heritage Site,” the country’s Heritage Minister Rebecca Pow said in a statement. “The research completed here has transformed our understanding of the Universe and it is right that this is recognized.”The 74-year-old station joins the likes of Iceland’s Vatnajökull National Park, the mounded tombs of ancient Japan, India’s fortified city of Jaipur, and the Mesopotamian city of Babylon as newly inscribed UNESCO World Heritage sites.Jodrell Bank Observatory—judged important to the collective interests of humanity—is now legally protected by international treaties.“This is fitting recognition of the history of science and discovery at Jodrell Bank, and the world that continues today,” Nancy Rothwell, president and vice-chancellor of the University of Manchester, added.“Indeed, the site is fantastic for the University because of its heritage, its teaching, and its research,” she continued. “And also because it is a place where many members of the public come to learn and be inspired about science.”The World Heritage Committee has been meeting in Baku, Azerbaijan, to decide which sites deserve special status and protection. The 43rd session continues until July 10.The 20th century architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright—a total of eight buildings—is the United States’ only addition (so far) this year.More on Geek.com:Astronomers Watch Black Hole Violently Destroy a Star3,000-Year-Old Fingerprints Found at Ancient, Iron Age Village in UAE‘Star Wars’ Fans Transform German Observatory Into Enormous R2-D2last_img read more

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Gold Sees Longest Weekly Losing Streak in 16 Years

first_imgGold slipped to near 5-1/2-year lows on Friday and was on course for a sixth straight weekly fall, its longest retreat since 1999, after upbeat U.S. economic data strengthened expectations for a near-term hike in interest rates.Bullion was also set to end July with its biggest monthly decline in more than two years after a deep rout last week further shook investor confidence, with more losses seen ahead.The July 20 selloff saw gold trip more than 3 percent, encouraging more investors since then to trim their holdings that pulled the global spot benchmark to $1,077 days later, its lowest since February 2010.Spot gold was down 0.3 percent at $1,084.60 an ounce by 0240 GMT, and has dropped more than 1 percent for the week. Bullion has lost 7.5 percent so far for the month, its steepest since June 2013.Data on Thursday showed the U.S. economy grew 2.3 percent in the second quarter, less than the 2.6 percent estimated in a Reuters poll, although first-quarter gross domestic product was revised to show growth of 0.6 percent instead of a contraction.That reinforced expectations the Federal Reserve is on track to raise interest rates, possibly at its next meeting in September, buoying the dollar and hurting gold anew.The data came after the Fed’s policy meeting this week at which it concluded that the world’s largest economy is “expanding moderately.””That big overhang is enough to keep gold trading at low levels,” said Argonaut Securities analyst Helen Lau, referring to the looming U.S. rate increase.Waning investment demand and weak physical appetite for gold also pose further downside risk for prices, said Lau.”Despite trading at multi-year lows, physical demand has been on the low side with premiums in China and India hardly moving,” MKS Group trader Jason Cerisola said in a note.A potential hike in U.S. interest rates dims the appeal of non-interest bearing assets such as gold.U.S. gold for August delivery dropped 0.4 percent to $1,083.80 an ounce.The Fed will not need to see balanced risks to the economy to proceed with an interest rate hike in September, according to former Fed officials and a review of central bank statements through recent turns in policy.In other metals, spot platinum and palladium were slightly weaker and not far off multi-year lows, while silver was steady.last_img read more

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5 unreported Myanmar mass graves confirmed AP

first_imgAerial view of a burned Rohingya village near Maungdaw, north of Rakhine state, Myanmar 27 September 2017. REUTERSThe faces of the men half-buried in the mass graves had been burned away by acid or blasted by bullets. Noor Kadir could only recognize his friends by the colours of their shorts.Kadir and 14 others, all Rohingya Muslims, had been choosing players for the soccer-like game of chinlone when the gunfire began. By the time the soldiers stopped shooting at the Myanmar village of Gu Dar Pyin, only Kadir and two teammates were still alive.Days later, Kadir found six of his friends lying among the bodies in two graves.They are among more than five mass graves, all previously unreported, that have been confirmed by The Associated Press through multiple interviews with more than two dozen survivors in Bangladesh refugee camps and through time-stamped cellphone videos. The Myanmar government regularly claims massacres like Gu Dar Pyin never happened and has acknowledged only one mass grave containing 10 “terrorists” in the village of Inn Din. The AP’s findings, however, suggest not only the military’s slaughter of civilians but the presence of many more graves with many more people.The graves are the newest piece of evidence for what looks increasingly like a genocide in Myanmar’s western Rakhine state against the Rohingya, a long-persecuted ethnic Muslim minority in the predominantly Buddhist country. The UN special envoy on human rights in Myanmar, Yanghee Lee, said Thursday that the military’s operations against the Rohingya bear “the hallmarks of a genocide.”last_img read more

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WMATA Announces Metrorail Safety Improvement Plan

first_imgThe general manager of the Washington, D.C. area’s transit system announced on May 6 substantial changes in the way the Metrorail will operate because of malfunctioning equipment and parts.Paul J. Wiedefeld, the general manager and CEO of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA), announced that expanded track repair work will begin in June to improve Metrorail safety and to restore customer confidence in service reliability. The plan includes 15 so-called “safety surges” over the next year that would repair equipment and update the rail system’s technology.One of the biggest changes is to the schedule. Wiedefeld said that the rail system will close at midnight each night instead of being open till 3 a.m. on weekends. In addition, there will be weekday work on rail lines that will start as early as 8 p.m. in many cases.Wiedefeld said there is a draft plan that details a comprehensive schedule of track work that will take place throughout the year, including the month-long closure of some Metro stations on the same rail line.For example, the Blue/Silver and Orange line rail lines from Eastern Market station to Minnesota Ave. /Benning Road will have reduced service from Aug. 20, 2016 to Sept. 16, 2016, while the Stadium Armory and Potomac Avenue stations will be shut down during that time. These lines have a large number of African-American customers because the trains are traveling to predominantly Black communities east of the Anacostia River and in central Prince George’s County, Md.The draft plan states that buses will be available during that time to take customers to Eastern Market, Minnesota Avenue and Benning Road stations when they have to go off the rail system because of the closure of Stadium Armory and Potomac Avenue stations. Buses will be available for all of the safety-surge areas.The draft plan urges customers to use alternate transportation to travel to avoid delays in their personal schedules.WMATA’s Metrobus system and its ills were not discussed during Wiedefeld’s announcement of the plan. The final version of SafeTrack will be released on May 16.Since his selection on Nov. 30, 2015 as general manager of WMATA, the second-busiest rapid transit and bus system in the nation, Wiedefeld has made upgrading the rail system a priority and has taken bold steps to insure customer safety. During the Jan. 22-24 blizzard earlier this year, Wiedefeld shut down the entire system from 10 p.m. Jan. 22 to limited service on Jan. 25, an unprecedented move by a general manager.Wiedefeld also gained national attention for shutting down the rail and bus system on March 16 because of concerns regarding the system’s cables. Since that time, there have been system flare-ups with the equipment and technology and Wiedefeld seemed to have had enough.“The plan is going to take some sacrifice from all of us,” the general manager said. “But it is clear that the current approach is not working [and] more aggressive action is necessary.”Wiedefeld called on leaders of the Washington area’s jurisdictions to support his plan of action.“Metro’s safety culture change depends on support from the entire region,” he said. “We have to begin by understanding that safety trumps inconvenience.”last_img read more

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Jacó Happenings

first_imgNo related posts. Last month’s leg two of the 2012 Los Sueños Signature Billfish Series showed an increase in participation with 156 anglers releasing 668 billfish.  The top angler wasFrancis Johnson, Jr., representing the boat “Sea Fix.” First place went to the boat “Bandolera” and Captain Ronnie Fields, second place to “C’est Tout Bon” and Captain Shannon Pecot and third place to “Never Say Never” and Captain Dennis Ward. For more information about tournaments at Los Sueños, contact Ashley Bretecher toll-free at 1-866-865-9759 or email a.bretecher@lsrm.com.The next meeting of the Central Pacific Women’s Group is Wed., April 18, at Hotel Cocal from 9-11 a.m. Lunch is included, as is jewelry-making instruction.All who participate will learn to make pendants and will walk away with their very own piece of jewelry. Participation costs $10, watching the meeting is free. All materials will be provided. Please contact Kathy Lynn prior to April 12 so she can be prepared with enough materials. Kathy’s creations will be on sale and 10 percent of all proceeds will be given back to our group.  For more information, contact centralpacificwomensgroup@gmail.com.Mike Marino and Vladamir Alvarado from Costa Rica Waterfall Tours have added a new exhilarating activity.  They are now offering canyoning and waterfall rappelling down a 300-foot waterfall with five rappels and two zip lines.  This high-adrenaline tour offers an exciting and challenging physical activity in one of nature’s greatest wonders.  Check it out at www.costaricawaterfalltours.com or call 2643-1834.Desi Morffe has opened a new location in Jacó Beach on the main strip below Le Loft.  Stop in and see her latest bikini designs, dresses and beach wear.  Her shop opens seven days a week at 11 a.m.  For more information, call 8813-2669 or email desimorffe@hotmail.com.Tomorrow, there more than 3,000 athletes will participate in the Jacó Extreme Challenge, which is set to begin with a Running Expo from 9 a.m.-3 p.m., followed by the race at 4 p.m. It starts at the Morgan’s Cove Hotel. For more information, please visit www.atletismoextremo.com.Lastly, Chris Clark from WRV has announced that the new Costa Rica collection T-shirts and tank tops are on sale at the El Pana Surf Shop.  Stop by and grab one before they are all gone.–Christina Truittchristina_truitt@yahoo.com Facebook Commentslast_img read more

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The 36 best Gustavo Cerati songs to get you through the day

first_imgThe world lost a musical icon today with the death of Argentine singer, songwriter and unequaled rocker Gustavo Cerati. Cerati died at 55 after spending four years in a coma due to a brain aneurysm.We, like so many others, are devastated by the loss, but thankfully Cerati’s legend lives on in the diverse music he and his colleagues created. To celebrate Cerati’s life, we made a playlist to get us through the day. We picked our 36 favorite songs from his solo career and during his time with Soda Stereo. If you haven’t listened to his music before, start right now.R.I.P., Cerati.“Hay vacíos que no pueden llenar…” Facebook Comments Related posts:Legendary crooner Joe Cocker dies at 70 Argentine rock star Charly García successfully undergoes hip surgery Kevin Johansen and The Nada to join illustrator Liniers in live art-music show in Escazú CELAC should be seen as an ally of the region’s social movements, says indigenous leaderlast_img read more

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AP Interview US Afghan withdrawal halfway done

first_imgAbout 90 percent of coalition operations now are partnered with Afghan forces, and Afghan forces are in the lead more than 40 percent of the time, he said.“We want to get that number higher, and that will come from battalion and higher units being able to take the lead with respect to planning,” he said. “Planning is really the hallmark of any large military formation, and it’s typically a weakness in new formations and new armies. So we are putting a lot of effort into teaching them how to plan, execute, recover from the mission and then re-cock and go back out again.”By the end of this year and into next year, Allen would like to see 5,500 personnel working in police and army advisory teams, but now the mission has 20 percent fewer advisers than it seeks.“I don’t know if we will make up all of that,” he said, “but it’s an ongoing request and I don’t miss an opportunity to emphasize that we really do need these folks.”As the Afghan forces gear up, the exit of foreign troops continues.The drawdown of 23,000 U.S. troops this year, now slightly more than half completed, will accelerate in the coming few months, he said. Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements Still, Allen said that he knows the clock is ticking on the NATO coalition’s combat mission, which is to end at the close of 2014 _ just 29 months from now.In a wide-ranging interview in his office at NATO headquarters in Kabul, Allen also said that while Afghan security forces were increasingly taking the lead, more work needs to be done to shore up their confidence in planning and executing operations. He said this summer’s coalition operations were aimed at pushing insurgents farther from population centers, expanding the security zone around the capital, Kabul, and getting more Afghan forces into the lead in the east, which borders Pakistan.The Afghan army and police force are battling low levels of literacy, corruption within their ranks and lack of equipment and experience, but Allen said they were showing themselves to be increasingly capable on the battlefield. Getting them into the lead is an essential goal of the next 29 months, he said.“We haven’t even recruited the whole Afghan national security force. That’s not going to happen for another couple months, but by Oct. 1, we hope to be at 352,000,” he said. “We don’t finish completely fielding the Afghan forces until December 2013. So just at that level alone there is significant work remaining to be done.” Comments   Share   Check your body, save your life “If you look at the 10 most violent districts, almost all of them are in the south or the southwest,” he said. “But it constitutes a relatively small part of the population of Afghanistan overall, ” he added.“We want to continue to push the insurgency increasingly out of the population centers into areas where they can be isolated, where they can be disrupted, where they can be rendered irrelevant,” he said. “And that’s the nature of the operations that are under way now.”U.S., NATO and Afghan forces also are working in the east to stop the infiltration of insurgents crossing the border from Pakistan to Afghanistan, expand the security zone around Kabul in Wardak and Logar provinces, just south of the capital, and improving security along highways extending southward from the capital.In the northeast, coalition and Afghan forces are conducting extensive operations in Kunar and Nangarhar provinces _ areas where al-Qaida and other transnational militants are active.Unneeded military equipment also has started making its way home.“The intent, ultimately, is to have the excess out of the theater about the time the mission would be completed in 29 months,” he said. “And it will take all of that time, actually, to move that excess out _ either a shipping container or a vehicle about every seven minutes between now until then.” Top Stories 4 must play golf courses in Arizonacenter_img Associated PressKABUL, Afghanistan (AP) – This year’s pullout of 23,000 American troops from Afghanistan is at the halfway mark, U.S. Gen. John Allen, the top commander of U.S. and NATO forces, said Sunday in an interview with The Associated Press.It’s a kind of milestone toward wrapping up the U.S. and NATO combat role after a decade in the war-torn nation _ but Allen cautioned against putting too much emphasis on the U.S. troop drawdown, because the U.S.-led coalition’s campaign is continuing. Natural spring cleaning tips and tricks for your home Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates Even so, he said it would be a mistake to focus too much on the exit of U.S. troops and equipment.“It’s not just about the drawdown and it’s not just about America,” he said. “There are 50 states in this coalition. There is also a significant Afghan national security force presence and that number is getting bigger by the day and they are getting more capable by the day.”He emphasized that work in Afghanistan will not end with the NATO combat mission in 2014.“We’re probably going to see some post-2014 military presence _ some U.S. presence and a NATO presence _ and while we’ve got much work to do in the next 29 months, we’ll have additional time later for the continued professionalization of the Afghan security forces,” he said, adding that the post-2014 NATO mission is still in the planning stage.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Sponsored Stories “August will be the heaviest month,” Allen said. “A lot is coming out now and a great deal will come out in August and early September. We’ll be done probably around mid-September or so.”President Barack Obama pulled out 10,000 U.S. troops from Afghanistan last year and ordered another 23,000 to be withdrawn by Sept. 30. That will leave roughly 68,000 American troops still in the country. By Oct. 1, 40,000 NATO forces will also still be fighting.Up to one half of the 23,000 troops being pulled out this year are combat forces, he said. Small numbers are being pulled from the relatively stable northern and western parts of the country. Some will be withdrawn from the east and the south “and a good bit in the southwest,” he said.Helmand province in the southwest and Kandahar province in the south are areas where the Taliban has its strongest roots. Tens of thousands of U.S. troops and their NATO and Afghan partners have worked the past two years to rout insurgents from their strongholds in the two provinces. Insurgents today are trying to reclaim their influence there.The NATO mission has concentrated on population centers, and this summer, it is focusing on going after insurgents outside the cities.last_img read more

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An icon on the east coast recognised at NSW Tourism Awards

first_imgCountry Club at night The annual NSW Tourism Awards were held on Friday Night at Rosehill Gardens where the Country Club Hotel, the cornerstone of the award winning Shoal Bay Resort & Spa, was announced as the Gold Award Winner for the Best Tourist Pub in New South Wales.  Shoal Bay Resort & Spa was also announced as Bronze Award Winner in the categories of Deluxe Accommodation and Meetings & Business Tourism.The 2010 NSW Tourism Awards marks the first year that the category of ‘Tourist Pubs’ was introduced. The category was open to pubs that significantly contribute to the tourism experience within their region. The focus of the award is that both the facilities and services enhance the tourism experience for domestic and international visitors.With a history spanning more than 76 years the Country Club Hotel, located on the white sands of Shoal Bay by the entrance to Port Stephens, is a pioneer when it comes to the Port Stephens tourism industry. The Country Club Hotel is a treasure trove of history surviving war and fire to become the corner stone of today’s award winning Shoal Bay Resort & Spa.Steeped in history, the Country Club Hotel remains the entertainment capital of Port Stephens and one of the most popular places for socialising on the East Coast of Australia. The Gold Award win at the 2010 NSW Tourism Awards recognises the Country Club Hotel’s contribution to the Port Stephens and NSW Tourism Industry, as well as its involvement in history shaping events that contribute to the authentic pub experience that guests from near and far enjoy year after year.Gary Bourke, Country Club Hotel Manager is delighted with the recognition; “I am so proud of the recognition from Tourism NSW and all of the team at the Country Club are so happy to receive this award.  We are genuinely focused on making every visit to the Country Club one to remember and aim to provide the best in quality entertainment and atmosphere. We take pride in catering to the diverse needs of domestic, international and local visitors, providing a truly unique and authentic Australian pub experience. We also believe in giving back to the community and support a variety of local sporting clubs and organisations. This certainly makes it all worthwhile”.This outstanding recognition for the Resort marks the culmination of the most successful year on record after winning multiple tourism awards at a local, regional and now state level.Presented by Tourism NSW, in conjunction with the Tourism Industry Council NSW, the Awards ceremony and Gala Dinner is the largest and most prestigious event on the NSW Tourism calendar.  Award finalists were selected after a three day judging process by a panel of NSW tourism industry experts and Awards sponsors.  The Marketing Manager for Shoal Bay Resort & Spa, Rebecca Smith, was delighted with the positive recognition Port Stephens will receive from the Country Club and Resort’s continued success. “We are incredibly proud to be part of such a beautiful part of the North Coast and the Hunter and to represent this region at such a distinguished level.  This success is a testament to the Country Club and Resort’s longstanding history. Our continued commitment to promoting Port Stephens and the Resort as the ideal holiday destination and most versatile Meetings & Conference facility in this region is rewarded by this recognition. Being successful at the NSW Tourism Awards encourages us to raise our expectations and services even further and to strive for bigger and better things to come in 2011”.Country Club Hotel – Gold Award Winner for best Tourist Pub in NSW at the 2010 NSW Tourism Awards.Shoal Bay Resort & Spa – Bronze Award Winner for Deluxe Accommodation, Bronze Award Winner for Meetings & Business Tourism at the 2010 NSW Tourism Awards. Source = Shoal Bay Resort & Spalast_img read more

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