DGCA grants aerodrome licence to Shirdi airport

first_imgFlying to the pilgrim town of Shirdi for the darshan of Sai Baba will soon become a reality. The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Thursday issued an aerodrome licence to Shirdi airport, which has a runway long enough for an Airbus A-320 and Boeing 737 aircraft to land.In a statement, DGCA said it issued the licence to Shirdi airport for day operations after ensuring compliance with all relevant standards. “The Maharashtra Airport Development Company (MADC) has developed a green field airport at Kakadi village in Ahmednagar district for which the Ministry of Civil Aviation had granted ‘in principal’ approval in 2011,” the DGCA statement said. The runway of the airport is 2,500 meters in length and is capable of handling Code 3C type aircraft, which include the Airbus 320 and Boeing 737.Suresh Kakani, vice-chairman and managing director, MADC, confirmed that the airport was ready and flight operations would start from October 1 to coincide with the 100th death anniversary of Sai Baba. “All the points raised during the DGCA inspection have been fulfilled. All that now remains is the start of flight operations,” Mr. Kakani said.Zoom Air, Alliance Air and TruJet have expressed a desire to start operations.last_img read more

J&K: probe on as cow smuggling suspect dies

first_imgThe mysterious death of a man, who was detained by the Jammu and Kashmir police on suspicion of being a cow smuggler in Kishtwar district last week, has triggered protests following which the administration has launched a magisterial probe into the incident.Javaid Ahmad Malik, a resident of Bharat village, was detained by officers of Chatroo police station on Friday and died the same day. The police claimed that Malik fell into a gorge while trying to escape from custody but his family alleged that he was beaten to death. They said the victim had gone to the police station on his own to secure the release of two of his relatives who were arrested on charges of bovine smuggling. An FIR has been registered against the police officers for negligence and a departmental inquiry has been initiated, officials said.Cops suspendedSHO of Chatroo police station Mohammad Bashir has been transferred and two others — ‘Munshi’ Jaffar Khan and selection-grade constable Mohammad Amin — have been placed under suspension. Dismissal of a Volunteer Home Guard, Mohammad Shareef, from service has been recommended, the officials said. Taking cognisance of protests in Doda and Chatroo over the death, District Development Commissioner, Kishtwar, Angrez Singh Rana ordered a magisterial probe into the incident. “The inquiry will be conducted by Additional District Development Commissioner, Kishtwar, Imam Din who has been asked to submit his report in a specified time frame,” a police spokesperson said. Senior Superintendent of Police, Kishtwar, Abrar Chowdhary has also ordered a departmental probe by Deputy Superintendent of Police, Headquarters, Nihar Ranjan in the case, he said.last_img read more

Legends Jaworski, Arnaiz grace Game 2 of PBA Finals

first_imgNonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Read Next Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netGame 2 of the 2017 PBA Governors’ Cup Finals between Ginebra and Meralco drew a mammoth crowd at Smart Araneta Coliseum on Sunday.But lost in the shuffle of the 16,159-strong fans who made their way to the Big Dome was the presence of Philippine basketball greats Robert Jaworski and Francis Arnaiz.ADVERTISEMENT Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients  The legendary backcourt tandem was side-by-side again among the screaming crowd when their old teams clash for the title in the season-ending conference.As always, Jaworski’s presence drew a lot of attention as fans came in troves to get a photo of the former senator.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutBut it didn’t take long before the public acknowledged Arnaiz, who was smiling as he soaked in the atmosphere from the rambunctious Araneta crowd, that even celebrities in attendance like newscaster Arnold Clavio couldn’t help but ask for mementos.With Jaworski and Arnaiz terrorizing the backcourt back in their day, they led their old Meralco team, then-known as the Reddy Kilowatts, to the 1971 Open Championship in the defunct MICAA. Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games View comments LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary LATEST STORIEScenter_img Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Black challenges locals to make shots, help Durham Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight They then took their partnership in the PBA, as they helped Toyota win nine titles before switching sides to Ginebra, where they won the franchise’s first taste of gold in the 1986 Open Conference.The Gin Kings ended up taking Game 2, 86-76, to grab a 2-0 lead in the 2017 PBA Governors’ Cup Finals. MOST READlast_img read more

How BJP MLA’s wife rammed brand new Lamborghini into autorickshaw

first_imgA major accident was averted after a Lamborghini sports car gifted by BJP MLA Narendra Mehta to his wife rammed into a stationery autorickshaw and nearly missed running over three pedestrians on Mira Bhayandar Road in Maharashtra today afternoon.The incident took place outside a family-run school Seven Square Academy, where the MLA’s wife Suman lost control of the vehicle while attempting to take a turn and rammed into an autorickshaw. Two women pedestrians fled to safety after they saw the car coming towards them.A video clipping of the same has gone viral on social media.BJP MLA’s wife rams her Lamborghini into an Auto.But if u understand Marathi, (don’t) listen to the Audio pic.twitter.com/WCkLiLitj4; Joy (@Joydas) August 30, 2016Following the incident, Mehta immediately rushed outside the school to check on his wife behind the wheels. He reportedly paid off the autorickshaw driver for the damages incurred. Narendra Mehta had gifted the orange coloured sports car to his wife Suman on her birthday on August 26. Photo: Twitter/ANI No complaint has been filed yet against Mehta’s wife for the accident.Narendra Mehta had gifted the orange coloured sports car to his wife Suman on her birthday on August 26.last_img read more

LG V20: Top features, specifications, India launch and everything you need to know

first_imgLG has launched its latest smartphone in San Francisco, the V20. The phone comes packed with multimedia features and also happens to be the first phone to launch with Android 7.0 Nougat operating system.LG V20 is the successor to V10 smartphone. The company has made changes in the way it looks, now it looks similar to LG’s modular phone G5. However, this one doesn’t have a modular design. LG has announced that the phone will first launch in Korea, followed by other regions. Earlier reports have suggested that it will launch in India by end of September or early October.Here’s everything you need to know about LG’s latest phone:Specifications:Processor: LG V20 runs on Qualcomm’s 64-bit quad-core Snapdragon 820 processor. The Snapdragon 820 supports X12LTE, which means it can offer 3X upload speed and 33 per cent faster download speeds compared to X10LTE.RAM: The phone is backed by a 4GB LPDDR4 RAM.Internal storage: LG V20 comes with 64GB internal storage, which is further expandable up to 2TB using a microSD card.Display: The phone sports 5.7-inch Quad HD IPS display with a resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels. The phone also features a secondary display on the top of the primary one. This secondary display shows notifications and alerts.Rear camera: LG V20 comes with a dual-camera setup on the back. It carries on 16-megapixel sensor for standard angle photography with F1.8 aperture and optical image stabilisation. The camera is accompanied by an 8-megapixel sensor that offers wide-angle with F2.4 aperture.advertisementFront camera: The phone has a 5-megapixel camera on the front with F1.9 aperture. It is also capable of taking wide-angle photos.Software: LG V20 is the first phone to run Android 7.0 Nougat operating system, however, it has been modified by LG’s UX 5.0+ user interface.Battery: The phone has a 3200mAh removable battery.Also read: LG G5 review: Just another star in the galaxySpecial features:LG V20 is packed with a number of advanced multimedia features. The company says that the phone is capable of “delivering the highest multimedia capabilities available in a mobile device”. — LG has introduced Steady Record 2.0 with the V20 smartphone. Using this technology, the camera can record sharper video footage while neutralizing shaky images.– Hi-Fi video recording lets a user record better videos and manually control the audio settings to remove unwanted background noise.– The V20 features 32-bit Hi-Fi Quad DAC which helps the phone deliver clearer sound by minimizing distortion and ambient noise by up to 50 per cent. — LG V20 is also the first phone to come with Google’s In Apps feature. This feature helps users find content not only from built-in apps including contacts, emails, text messages and photos, but also from user-installed apps.– The phone is made of AL6013 metal, which is found in aircrafts, mountain bikes and sailboats. While the metal makes the phone lighter than its predecessor, it also makes it durable. The company says the phone is absorbs shock by more than 20 per cent compared to other materials.last_img read more

Modi praises Germanys success in football, Bundesliga

first_imgBerlin, May 30 (PTI) Prime Minister Narendra Modi today praised Germanys investment in its youth and promoting a sporting culture in the country, pointing out that its football league Bundesliga has a huge following in India.Modi said India wants to enhance cooperation with Germany to replicate the success achieved by the key European nation.”Very few people would know that Bundesliga has a widespread following in India,” he said in his speech after India and Germany signed 12 MoUs and agreements covering diverse sectors, including youth development and vocational training.Germanys Bundesliga is one of the top association football leagues in Europe, and the football league with the highest average stadium attendance worldwide.Germany over the years has made immense investment in its youth system, producing some of the worlds best football players. The countrys focus on promoting a sporting culture has made the German national side one of the most successful teams at international footballing competitions.They have won a total of four World Cups – in 1954, 1974, 1990, 2014 – and three European Championships – in 1972, 1980, 1996.This year, the FIFA U-17 World Cup is scheduled in India in October and the final will be played in Kolkata. As hosts, India will feature in the 24-team event, which will be the first time an Indian team will participate in a FIFA tournament. PTI ABH AKJ ABHlast_img read more

How Arsenal blew their chance to sign Griezmann

first_imgTransfers Griezmann explains how Arsenal blew their chance to sign him Goal Last updated 1 year ago 23:14 11/29/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(3) Antoine Griezmann Atletico Madrid Getty Transfers Arsenal Premier League Real Sociedad Atlético Madrid Primera División Antoine Griezmann The 26-year-old striker has been a top target for several Premier League sides, but the Gunners have no chance of getting him now Antoine Griezmann says he has no interest in joining Arsenal in the future after they missed an opportunity to sign him in 2013.The Atletico Madrid striker has been heavily linked with a move to the Premier League in recent years, with Arsenal and Manchester United said to have been heavily interested.Griezmann, 26, opted to stay in the Spanish capital to help the club through a recent transfer ban.  Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player With Diego Costa returning in January once the ban is over, there has been speculation that the France international could leave the Wanda Metropolitano, but the Gunners can rule themselves out after disappointing him four years ago.Griezmann 3/4 to score v SociedadIn his new book, Behind the Smile, Griezmann told the story of how he came close to moving from Real Sociedad to the Emirates Stadium to unite with Arsene Wenger.”I waited, I waited, and I kept waiting,” he wrote.”When there was no news, my agent Eric Olhats called Gilles Grimandi at Arsenal, who said the manager was still interested in me and to keep waiting.Antoine Griezmann Atletico MadridAntoine Griezmann Atletico Madrid“Finally a few hours before the market closed, he let us know Arsenal would not make a move. I don’t like to be told something and for it not to happen.”So when Eric told me later that they were interested again I told him ‘Forget it, after the blow they gave us’.”A year later, Griezmann moved to Atletico for €35 million and has since scored 89 goals in 176 games.last_img read more

BCCI removes Pakistan cricket related memorabilia from its headquarters

first_imgBCCI removes Pakistan cricket related memorabilia from its headquartersThe Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has removed all memorabilia related to Pakistan cricket from its headquarters in Mumbai. Cricket grounds across the country have taken down posters of Pakistani cricketers after the Pulwama terror attack.advertisement Rasesh Mandani MumbaiFebruary 20, 2019UPDATED: February 20, 2019 19:31 IST BCCI has removed memorabilia relating to Pakistan cricket from its Headquarters in Mumbai (Getty Images)BCCI has pulled down memorabilia and photos related to Pakistan cricket from its four-storeyed headquarters in Mumbai respecting the anti-Pakistan sentiment in the country following the Pulwama terror attack which left 40 CRPF jawans dead.BCCI headquarters is replete with photo galleries celebrating the iconic moments and achievers of Indian cricket.On the first floor of the building, there are a number of memorabilia bats involving cricket teams around the world. In the bat memorabilia section, there were also some autographed bats of Pakistani teams that competed against India which have now been removed.Another famous photograph of the 1992 World Cup involving Javed Miandad and Kiran More where Miandad, visibly irritated by Indian wicket keeper’s constant appealing and banter, frog jumped in his batting crease to mock him has also been removed.A number of other leading cricket associations have removed photographs of former Pakistan captain and now their Prime Minister Imran Khan as well as other Pakistan cricket photos from their stadium galleries in protest.Mumbai’s Cricket Club of India (CCI) has covered Imran Khan’s image at it’s ‘Porbandar all rounders’ restaurant. Even Himachal Pradesh cricket association, Punjab Cricket Association, Karanataka cricket Association and Rajasthan Cricket Association have pulled down Pakistan cricket related material from their stadium galleries in Dharamshala, Mohali, Bangaluru and Jaipur respectively.Also Read | World Cup not more important than the country, say Harbhajan and AzharuddinAlso Read | What will be the worth of a World Cup if India haven’t beaten Pakistan? Aakash ChopraAlso Read | India should put pressure on ICC to throw Pakistan out of the World Cup: Chetan ChauhanadvertisementFor sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Tags :Follow BCCIFollow Pakistan cricketFollow PakistanFollow BCCI headquarterslast_img read more

Readers’ Picks of the Week (Sep 22-28, 2014)

first_imgzoom Radioactive SUV Found Aboard Carrier in VladivostokCustoms officials at the Russian port of Vladivostok held up the Malacca Highway, a Panama-flagged Ro-Ro car carrier on September 11, 2014, upon discovering one of the vehicles aboard emitted radiation.…Read moreMaersk Line to Spend USD 3 Bn a Year on NewbuildingsMaersk Line plans to set aside close to USD 3 billion a year for the period 2015-2019 to finance shipbuilding projects, in an effort to further solidify its position of the shipping company with the largest operating fleet, Reuters reports.…Read moreCaptain and Chief Officer of Grounded Ferry ArrestedThe captain and the chief officer of the Europalink ferry shipwrecked near the islet of Peristeres northeast of Corfy have been arrested by the Greek authorities, the Maritime Operational Centre of the Ministry of Merchant Marine reports. The Italian-flagged ferry was on her regular route from the Greek port of Patras to Ancona, Italy, when it hit underwater rocks at around 2 am on Sunday, September 21.…Read moreShipping Needs a Steve JobsThe shipping industry is ready for the introduction of new technology, all we need is a new generation of tech-savvy middle and senior managers, says Dr. Martin Stopford, author of textbook Maritime Economics.…Read moreEffects of Russia Sanctions Start to Kick InConsequences of economic sanctions imposed by the European Union against Russian companies and officials have started to kick in. …Read more World Maritime News Staff, September 28, 2014last_img read more

US Defense Secy cautions Europe to be wary of China

first_imgLondon: US Defense Secretary Mark Esper cautioned European allies against cozying up to China, arguing on Friday that Beijing seeks greater global influence by leveraging economic power and stealing technology. “The more dependent a country becomes on Chinese investment and trade, the more susceptible they are to coercion and retribution when they act outside of Beijing’s wishes,” Esper said in a speech at the Royal United Services Institute, a think tank. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USEsper’s assertion that China is seeking to expand its influence at the expense of others has been a common U.S. government refrain for years, including during President Barack Obama’s administration. By taking this message to London, Esper seemed to be suggesting that Europeans do not fully share U.S. concerns, which often center on China’s efforts to militarize disputed territory in the South China Sea and its vast trade surplus with the U.S. “I would caution my friends in Europe this is not a problem in some distant land that does not affect you,” he said. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential pollsIn a similar vein, Esper blasted Russia for arms control violations and for aggression in Europe, including its annexation of Crimea in 2014 and what he called Moscow’s continued aggression in eastern Ukraine. In a question-and-answer session after his prepared remarks, Esper said Russian ground-based cruise missiles aimed at Europe are “probably nuclear-tipped.” Esper was making the case for the Trump administration’s argument that the West must do more to counter what he called efforts by China and Russia to “disrupt the international order” to gain advantage. “China’s technology theft for military gain is staggering,” Esper said. It was the first major policy speech by Esper since becoming defense secretary in July. In tone and substance, the remarks showed Esper subscribes to what has become a common theme in Washington, namely that China is the greatest long-term threat to global security. “For anyone who wonders what a world dominated by Beijing might look like,” he said, “I would argue all you need to do is look at how they treat their own people, within their borders.” Esper cited as an example China’s treatment of minority Uighurs since the ruling Communist Party in 2016 launched what it calls a campaign against ethnic separatism and religious extremism in the western region of Xinjiang. An estimated 1 million Uighurs have since been detained in internment camps and prisons across the region, and advocacy groups say that includes more than 400 prominent academics, writers, performers and artists. Critics say the government is targeting intellectuals to dilute or even erase Uighur culture, language and identity. “It is increasingly clear that Russia and China want to disrupt the international order by gaining a veto over other nations’ economic, diplomatic and security decisions,” Esper said.last_img read more

Retaliatory tariffs to hit wide range from pipes to pizzas to lawn

first_imgOTTAWA – Canada will impose retaliatory tariffs on up to $16.6 billion worth of U.S. imports in response to the American decision to place similar levies on Canadian-made steel and aluminum.The Canadian tariffs, which go into effect July 1, cover a broad range of items. Some, mainly unfinished iron and steel products, will be hit with a 25 per cent tariff, while others, including many consumer products, will be tagged with a 10-per-cent duty.Here is a list of some of the affected products, which run from industrial metal bars to gherkins, whiskey and felt-tipped pens.Items subject to 25 per cent– Iron and non-alloy steel in ingots or other primary forms, including semi-finished products, flat-rolled products, bars and rods and wire.– Stainless steel ingots or other primary forms, including semi-finished products, flat-rolled products of stainless steel, bars and rods, angles, shapes and sections, and wire.– Other alloy steel in ingots or other primary forms, including semi-finished products, flat-rolled products, bars and rods, angles, shapes and sections, hollow drill bars and rods, wire.– Tubes and pipes, sheet piling, railway or tramway track construction material, pipe for oil or gas pipelines, casing or tubing used in drilling for oil or gas.Items subject to 10 per cent– Food products, including yogurt, roasted coffee that is not decaffeinated, prepared meals of fowl or beef.– Sweets, including maple sugar and syrup, licorice candy, toffee, other sugar confectionery, including white chocolate, not containing cocoa, other chocolate in blocks — slabs or bar, filled or not filled.– Other foods, including pizza and quiche, cucumbers and gherkins, jams, jellies, strawberry jam, nut purees and pastes, berry purees, and other fruit purees other than banana puree.– Condiments, including soy sauce, tomato ketchup and other tomato sauces, prepared mustard, mayonnaise, salad dressing, mixed condiments and mixed seasonings, other sauces.– Soups and broths, mineral waters and aerated waters, containing added sugar or other sweetening matter or flavour.– Whiskey.– Personal grooming products, including manicure or pedicure preparations, hair spray, shaving and after-shave preparations, soaps and other skin washing products.– Household products, including room deodorizers, automatic dishwasher detergents, candles and tapers, other than those for birthdays, Christmas or other festive occasions; glues or adhesives sold in containers of under a kilogram, tableware and kitchenware, plastic household articles and hygienic or toilet articles, of plastic, toilet paper, handkerchiefs, cleansing or facial tissues and towels, tablecloths and serviettes, printed or illustrated postcards or greeting cards.– Hardware products, including insecticides and fungicides in packages under 1.36 kg each, plywood (other than bamboo), veneered panels and similar laminated wood.– Other steel or iron products, including beer kegs, or parts for stoves, ranges, grates, cookers and barbecues.– Aluminum bars, rods, wire, sheets, foil, tubes and pipes and pipe fittings, most aluminum structural pieces, aluminum reservoirs, tanks, vats and similar containers, including tanks for compressed or liquefied gas.– Aluminum kitchenware, including tables, scouring pads.– Appliances, including refrigerator-freezers fitted with separate external doors, instantaneous or storage water heaters, washing machines.– Miscellaneous items, including lawn mowers, electrical boards, panels, consoles, inflatable boats, sailboats, motorboats, mattresses, sleeping bags and other bedding, playing cards, ball point pens, felt tipped and other porous-tipped pens and markers.last_img read more

Life sentence appeal by Halifax mall plotter rejected by Nova Scotia court

first_imgHALIFAX — Nova Scotia’s top court has rejected the appeal of the life sentence given to an American woman who plotted a Valentine’s Day shooting spree at a Halifax mall in 2015.In a written decision released today, the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal says “there is nothing” to justify Lindsay Souvannarath’s appeal of her sentence of life with no chance of parole for 10 years.Writing on behalf of a three-judge panel, Justice Ann Derrick says the sentencing judge was entitled to determine the gravity of the conspiracy around the plot and was required to decide what sentence would protect the public.Derrick says the judge was satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt that had the plan not been interrupted, Souvannarath and co-conspirator James Gamble would have carried it out.Souvannarath pleaded guilty in April 2017 about six months after Randall Shepherd — a Halifax man described in court as the “cheerleader” of the foiled plot — was sentenced to a decade in jail. The 19-year-old Gamble was found dead in his Halifax-area home a day before the planned attack.Her lawyer, Peter Planetta, had argued the life sentence handed down would have been more appropriate for a terrorism case.Planetta also argued during a hearing last month that Souvannarath’s sentence should be similar to that handed to Shepherd.Crown lawyer Tim O’Leary told the court the sentence was appropriate, though it was on the top end of what’s recommended for the offence.The origin of the conspiracy was traced back to December 2014, when Souvannarath and Gamble began an online relationship.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

UK prime minister may not seek vote on Brexit deal this week

LONDON — British Prime Minister Theresa May has told lawmakers she may not seek passage of her Brexit withdrawal plan in Parliament next week.The embattled leader wrote to lawmakers Friday night saying she would bring the bill back to Parliament “if it appears that there is sufficient support.”She also says she would need the approval of House Speaker John Bercow to bring the plan back for a third time despite his objections.Lawmakers have twice rejected the deal. Britain is scheduled to leave the European Union on April 12 if no deal is approved.She told lawmakers Britain still has options including an extension that would require taking part in European Parliament elections in May.In a conciliatory note, she also offered to meet with lawmakers to discuss Brexit policy.The Associated Press read more

Philippines huge amount needs to be done to curb extrajudicial killings –

With a significant number of extrajudicial killings “convincingly attributed” to its armed forces, a culture of virtual impunity and “the rampant problem of witness vulnerability,” the Philippines’ Government faces the “enduring and large challenge” of restoring accountability, an independent United Nations human rights expert warned today. “There is a huge amount that remains to be done,” UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions Philip Alston said in a statement at the end of a 10-day visit to the South-East Asian country, during which he said he enjoyed the Government’s “unqualified cooperation.” He noted that he had met with virtually all relevant senior officials, including President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. “The Government’s invitation to visit reflects a clear recognition of the gravity of the problem, a willingness to permit outside scrutiny, and a very welcome preparedness to engage” on the issue of extrajudicial killings, he added. Mr. Alston, who also met with civil society groups, victims and witnesses of killings, declined to join in the country’s heated debate over how many people had been killed. “The numbers game is especially unproductive but I am certain that the number is high enough to be distressing,” he said. “Even more importantly, numbers are not what count. The impact of even a limited number of killings of the type alleged is corrosive in many ways. It intimidates vast numbers of civil society actors, it sends a message of vulnerability to all but the most well connected, and it severely undermines the political discourse which is central to a resolution of the problems confronting this country.” He dismissed the army’s claim that the recent rise in killings lies in internal purges by the communist insurgency as “especially unconvincing,” saying it “remains in a state of almost total denial … of its need to respond effectively and authentically” to allegations that military personnel are involved in unlawful killings. “The President needs to persuade the military that its reputation and effectiveness will be considerably enhanced, rather than undermined, by acknowledging the facts and taking genuine steps to investigate,” Mr. Alston added, stating that he did “not in any way underestimate the challenges of waging counter-insurgency operations on a range of fronts.” Mr. Alston stressed that the independent commission created by the president to investigate the killings was losing its “political capital” due to the refusal to publish its report while the judicial system was undermined by “the virtual impunity” prevailing and the risks faced by witnesses. “The present message is that if you want to preserve your life expectancy, don’t act as a witness in a criminal prosecution for killing. Witnesses are systematically intimidated and harassed,” he said, noting that the Witness Protection Program is impressive on paper but deeply flawed in practice. Turning to the larger political context, Mr. Alston noted that the strategy of reconciliation with the leftist groups had been abandoned and the increase in extrajudicial executions in recent years was attributable at least in part to a shift in counterinsurgency strategy. The attempt to vilify left-leaning organizations and to intimidate their leaders had in some instances escalated into extrajudicial execution, he said. “The Philippines remain an example to all of us in terms of the peaceful ending of martial law by the People’s Revolution [in 1986] and the adoption of a Constitution reflecting a powerful commitment to ensure respect for human rights,” he concluded in remarks that were broadcast live on Philippines television. The various measures ordered by the President in response to the independent commission report “constitute important first steps, but there is a huge amount that remains to be done,” he declared. Mr. Alston, who serves in an unpaid, independent capacity, will present a short preliminary report to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on 27 March 2007, with the full report with specific recommendations being made public in the following months. 22 February 2007With a significant number of extrajudicial killings “convincingly attributed” to its armed forces, a culture of virtual impunity and “the rampant problem of witness vulnerability,” the Philippines’ Government faces the “enduring and large challenge” of restoring accountability, an independent United Nations human rights expert warned today. read more

162yearold Donnybrook Fair small but very mighty

Susan Platteeuw sits with her 1932 McLaughlin Buick at the car show on Sunday during the Donnybrook Fair. ASHLEY TAYLOR The car show at Donnybrook Fair featured many classic vehicles. ASHLEY TAYLOR This year’s fair included a bigger demolition derby, a tractor show, axe throwing and entertainment by local magician Lucas Wilson.“Every year we try to have something different,” said Matthews.Local schools bring in the artwork of their students to have on display during the fair.“They’re very dedicated to sending art to us; the teachers are really great,” said Matthews. “We also receive a lot of home crafts, baking, quilting and stuff like that. There’s prize money for it so it’s really great.”A tug of war event Sunday morning drew teams from five local schools, with Walsh Public School finishing first. Also participating were Port Rowan Public School, St. Bernard of Clairvaux School, West Lynn Public School and St. Frances Cabrini School. Cam Smith shows off his 1974 Monte Carlo at the Donnybrook Fair car show on Sunday. ASHLEY TAYLOR jpg, BR jpg, BR WALSH While it has been going on for 162 years, the Donnybrook Fair still attracts newcomers.“What a cute small fair,” said Simcoe native Beth Murdoch, who spent Sunday morning with her two sons at the Walsh fairgrounds.“We’ve lived here all of our lives and have never been.”The fair is always finding ways to improve, with new attractions added each year.“We’re a small fair but we’re very mighty,” said Lynda Matthews, secretary-treasurer of the Charlotteville Agricultural Society, which runs the two-day fair.“We’ve been here for a long time and there’s a lot of history.” jpg, BR A large portion of the fairgrounds was taken over with classic cars.“Every year the car show gets bigger and bigger,” said Matthews. “Sometimes we have to turn cars away because that’s how big it gets.”astaylor@postmedia.com read more

Environmental protestors suspected of orchestrating Gatwick drone chaos

Security services along with the military were called in last night to help to capture the drone pilot who had tormented police armed with sniper rifles and airport authorities since 9pm on Wednesday night. Environmental protestors were suspected of orchestrating a drone attack that shut down Gatwick airport amid questions over how they could wreak chaos for 24 hours. Travellers, including pregnant women and children, slept on the airport floor while aircraft wanting to land were diverted…–– ADVERTISEMENT –– The repeated appearance of the drone within Gatwick’s one-kilometre no-fly zone forced more than 760 flights to be grounded and the travel pans of 110,000 passengers five days before Christmas to be ruined.

Adding to chaos Waiting times for nursing home funding double over three

first_imgNot only is this leading to chaos in our hospitals but in some instances is placing undue financial pressure on older relatives, adding to their fears and concerns. WAITING TIMES FOR nursing home funding have doubled over three months, new figures reveal.And as many as 60 older people every week are being added to “already unacceptable” waiting lists for nursing home funding.This can leave families with a bill of up to €15,000 before any funding is received.The details were released in a series of parliamentary questions from Roscommon – South Leitrim TD Denis Naughten, who asked Minister Kathleen Lynch about the waiting times for the Nursing Homes Support Scheme.This provides “financial support for people who need long-term nursing home care”.The number of people on the waiting list increased by more than 500 over three months, while the waiting time doubled from six to twelve weeks.“While some 1,500 older people have been approved for financial support under the Fair Deal nursing home scheme, they cannot receive payment towards the shortfall between their income and the nursing home cost until they reach the top of a 12 week plus national waiting list,” Naughten said. Click here to see a larger version.Nursing Homes Ireland warned last week these long waiting times for funding could be putting patients’ ‘health at risk’.“Older persons are remaining within acute hospitals for extended periods unnecessarily and being admitted to such settings because their complex care requirements cannot be met at home,” CEO Tadhg Daly said, and warned that it has “implications for wider health service.”“When Fair Deal 2014 budget was significantly cut we warned it would have very serious consequences for health and wellbeing of older persons and increase pressures upon acute hospital services.Our fears are being realised.Previously: Long waiting times for nursing home funding causing ‘distress and hardship’ >last_img read more

Massive Northern California fire gets even bigger

first_imgREDDING, Calif. (AP) — Firefighters battling a huge wildfire in Northern California kept it from doing more damage to the city of Redding but three smaller communities were in danger as flames closed in and residents packed up to leave.The fire grew by about 35 percent overnight to 127 square miles (328 square kilometers) and pushed southwest of Redding, toward the communities of Ono, Igo and Gas Point. The winds that aided firefighters in keeping the flames from more populated areas were propelling it forward at a frightening rate.“We’re not getting a break with the weather,” said Chris Anthony, a spokesman for Cal Fire, the state agency responsible for fighting wildfires. “It just continues to be really hot, really dry and we continue to get those winds. … This fire’s getting so big and there are so many different parts to it.”The so-called Carr Fire was ignited Monday by a vehicle and exploded Thursday night, jumped the Sacramento River and pushed into Redding, about 250 miles (402 kilometers) north of San Francisco and the largest city in the region with about 92,000 residents. Two firefighters were killed and the latest tally of 500 destroyed structures was sure to rise. About 37,000 people are under evacuation orders, 5,000 homes are threatened and the fire is just 5 percent contained.Elsewhere in California, large fires continued to burn outside Yosemite National Park and in the San Jacinto Mountains east of Los Angeles near Palm Springs. Nationally, 89 active large fires have consumed nearly 930,000 acres in 14 states, according to the National Interagency Fire Center. So far this year, nearly 37,000 wildfires have burned more than 4.25 million acres.last_img read more

Hinkley Point C staff to receive interim bonus payments

first_imgMembers of the trade union Unite who are working on the construction of Hinkley Point C, the EDF Energy-led nuclear power station project, are to receive bonus payments as part of an interim agreement while the facility is under construction.The interim bonus arrangements are effective from 1 June 2017 under a previously approved Civil Engineering Sector Agreement (CESA), which governs pay and conditions. The payments, which will be linked to safe and collaborative on-site working, will apply until the end of August 2017.Under the bonus agreement, working supervisors and craft grades will receive £4 an hour, skilled worker grades will receive £3 an hour, and general workers will receive £2 an hour.Representatives from Unite, EDF Energy, contractor Bylor, which is a consortium of French organisation Bouygues TP and construction business Laing O’Rourke, and the Kier-Bam joint venture, which is undertaking the enabling works, will also form a collective differences panel. The panel will look to identify a permanent productivity or milestone-based bonus arrangement that is agreeable to all parties, delivering its recommendations by August 2017.The panel will include a senior executive from EDF Energy and a senior full-time official from Unite.Under the agreement, no industrial action will be considered while the interim arrangements are in place or until the collective differences procedure has been exhausted.The bonus dispute begun in April 2017. Unions Unite and GMB argued that a bonus rate proposed by the Bylor consortium was insufficient to attract the quality of staff needed to ensure that that the civil works phase of the £18 billion construction project was completed on time.Unite and GMB members were balloted in May 2017. They voted to refuse the proposed bonus arrangement.Nigel Cann, programme and construction delivery director for Hinkley Point C at EDF Energy, said: “We are proud about the best in class nature of the overall package for the Hinkley Point C civil workforce. We have created great facilities, an opportunity to develop and a very competitive reward structure.“We are pleased that these interim arrangements allow constructive dialogue to continue to finalise this important agreement. Unite the union has been a constructive partner in the discussions to date and I look forward to this continuing throughout the construction of the Hinkley Point C power station.”Jerry Swain, acting national officer for construction at Unite, added: “I am pleased that following consultation with our stewards and members that we, along with the various parties, have been able to agree a clear path forward and that the prospect of industrial action, which is always a last resort, can be taken off the agenda in order to allow the Differences Panel to deliberate.“The work undertaken by EDF Energy in ensuring that all parties signed up to the interim agreement has been crucial in providing a breathing space and creating the opportunity for a long-term solution being agreed to finally resolve this matter.”last_img read more