Spot-fixing: Pak President Zardari tells PCB to help tainted trio

first_imgDisappointed with the PCB’s handling of the spot-fixing trial at the end of which led to three of country’s cricketers being jailed in the UK, Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari has instructed it to provide all necessary legal help to the tainted trio. Interior minister Rehman Malik said Zardari, also the patron-in-chief of the PCB, is miffed with the way the matter was dealt with by the Board. The spot-fixing trial ended on Thursday with former Test captain Salman Butt and pacers Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir being jailed after 20 days of non-stop hearings. Malik said that he had briefed the President on the trial and sentences handed to the three players. “The President has directed that he be given a comprehensive report from the Pakistan Cricket Board on the issue and on the sentences given to our players,” Malik said. The President has also directed the PCB and Malik to look for ways to bail out the three players. While the court handed out a 30-month sentence to Butt who was captain when the spot-fixing allegations surfaced, Asif was given a one year jail term and Amir, 19, was told to spend six months in a youth detention and correction centre. Malik told reporters that he had asked Pakistan’s High Commissioner to UK Wajid Shamsul Hassan to provide necessary legal aid to the trio where possible. Malik had said that if it were a conspiracy against the players, it should be revealed to the world and a commission should investigate the issue from scratch. “We cannot rule out the possibility of any of the convicted players being innocent,” he said. Malik said that the players will not be left alone and that legal aid would be provided to them. But former Test captain Rashid Latif expressed surprise over Malik’s statement. “What is the use of seeking report now. What was the government doing when the trial first began in June. Why react now when the damage has been done to Pakistan cricket,” he said. Noted lawyer Umar Khayyam, who represented Test batsman Yasir Hameed in his complaint against the now defunct “News of the World” newspaper said the government has lost its opportunity to do something for the players. “There is a provision where before the trial goes to court a diplomatic clause can be evoked on the request of a government which is a member of the Commonwealth and considered a friendly country by the country where the trial is being held,” Khayyam said. He noted that since the start of the spot-fixing scandal the PCB and government had lagged behind and not been proactive in playing their role in the entire episode. “Under the diplomatic clause the PCB could have asked the government to use the diplomatic clauses to get the players back to Pakistan safe and sound and than put them on trial in Pakistan,” he noted.advertisementlast_img read more

UEFA launches eChampions League with $100,000 prize

first_imgAdvertisement AdvertisementThe rise of electronic sports (esports) has been widespread over the past half-decade. In the footballing world as well, esports has been a figurative stakeholder per se with EA Sports’s FIFA video game series taking center stage as a sponsor in the Premier League and now in the UEFA Champions League. With the advent of Champions League license into FIFA’s latest edition FIFA 19, the European footballing body is planning to dwell into esports.Recently Premier League announced the ePremier League which starts in January and UK-based players will compete against one another on Fifa 2019. After the initial online qualification round, clubs will host live play-off rounds, with two competitors from each of the 20 clubs reaching the final.The eChampions League Fifa 19 tournament culminates with a final in Madrid on 31 May – a day before the Champions League final.“It creates a unique opportunity for the competitive Fifa superstars to represent their clubs in the pinnacle of club football,” said EA Sports gaming chief Brent Koning.Global online knockout tournaments will take place on 2-3 March, with 64 players progressing to a live qualifying event in April.The top eight competitors will then represent their clubs at the final in May, with the winner taking a $100,000 (£76,830) share of the $280,000 (£215,125) prize pool.last_img read more

Indian Boxing Champion, Vijender Singh vs Ghanaian Veteran, Charles Adamu to be telecast on…

first_imgVijender Singh:“I am fully excited for my Dubai debut. I know Charles Adamu is an experienced boxer but I can easily knock him in the early rounds. I am sure he will try his best but I have worked hard in the last two months on my technique and fitness.” Watch Vijender Singh vs Charles Adamu in Rotunda Rumble 2 live and exclusive on SONY TEN 1 and SONY TEN 1 HD on 22nd November 2019 from 9:00PM onwards. Advertisement A pugilist from Haryana, Vijender Singh has a stellar record with a bronze Olympic medal, a bronze World Championships medal, gold and bronze Asian Games medals, a bronze and two silver Commonwealth Games medals and one bronze and silver Asian Championships medals. Since turning professional in 2015, he has an unbeaten streak of 11-0 and the WBO Asia Pacific and Oriental Super middleweight titles. The 34-year old Indian will take on Charles Adamu or “The Crusader”, a two-time Commonwealth Games champion, who has won 33 of his 47 professional fights. The Ghanaian veteran went professional in 2001 and has fought against the world’s top boxers in Ghana, UK, Canada, South Africa, Denmark, Latvia and more. While he will enter the ring with a lot more experience, the 42-year old has won only one of his last five bouts, giving hope to the Indian boxer and his fans.Rotunda Rumble 2 will also feature fights between top boxers like British super-lightweight, Jack Catterall taking on Germany’s Timo Schwarzkopf and Pakistan’s Muhammad Waseem against former world champion Ganigan Lopez. The fight card also features Thomas Patrick Ward, Martin Casillas, Rohan Date, Abilkhaiyr Shegaliyev, Jayr Raquinel and Hasibullah Ahmadi. The card is a must-watch for boxing fans and enthusiasts as one of India’s most decorated boxers’ takes on a boxing veteran to prove his mettle.Comments: AdvertisementSony Pictures Sports Network (SPSN) will bring Rotunda Rumble 2 featuring ace Indian boxer, Vijender Singh take on Charles Adamu at Caesars Palace Bluewaters in Dubai on 22nd November 2019 to Indian audiences. The match, which is Vijender Singh’s second fight in 2019 and 12th professional fight overall, will be telecast live and exclusive on SONY TEN 1 channels, 9:00PM onwards.last_img read more

French Open prize money raised by 8 per cent, new court inaugurated

first_imgFrench Open organisers have announced an eight per cent increase in the total prize money to 42.6 million euros ($48.35 million) and also inaugurated a new court that is the famed Grand Slam tennis tournament’s third-biggest.Prize money will jump the most for men and women who are ousted in the qualifying stage or who lose in the first round, with the latter now set to earn 46,000 euros ($52,333) apiece, an increase of 15 per cent over last year, Efe news reported on Friday.The winners of the men’s and women’s singles will each receive 2.3 million euros ($2.6 million), up 4.55 per cent from last year, while the singles finalists will earn 1.18 million euros, an increase of 5.36 per cent.On Thursday, tournament organisers also inaugurated a new 5,000-seat court that is the first piece of a renovation project launched in 2018 at tennis’ clay-court Grand Slam.Known as Court Simonne Mathieu, it is named after a star French player of the 1920s and 1930s who won two Roland Garros women’s singles titles (when the tournament was known as the French Championships). Mathieu (1908-1980) also was a runner-up at that tournament on six occasions and became a French resistance fighter during World War II.The new court is the third-biggest at Stade Roland Garros after Court Philippe Chatrier (the main stadium) and Court Suzanne Lenglen.last_img read more

I am flexible batting at any position cant demand number spot Iyer

first_imgPort-of-Spain: Shreyas Iyer says he is “flexible” batting at any position as the Indian team management continues its search for a reliable number four batsman. Iyer, who is part of the team touring the Caribbean islands, could be in competition with the likes of K L Rahul and Rishabh Pant over the next two ODIs against the West Indies. “We have got no idea. It’s totally the management’s decision. I can’t go and say that I want to bat at number four and they would put me in that spot. It’s not like that,” Iyer said when asked about the problematic position. Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over Chandigarh India could not find an answer to their number four conundrum through the World Cup and the search will continue in the remaining two games of the three-match ODI series. “It’s going to be a vacant spot and they are going to definitely try and give chances to all the players in that position. Currently, no one is convinced with that position,” the player said at the pre-match press conference. “Personally, I am not thinking about batting only at No.4. I want to be someone who is very flexible batting at any number or if you go into any situation you should be able to grab that opportunity and make the best use of it.” Also Read – Vijender’s next fight on Nov 22, opponent to be announced later Iyer, who has a couple of half-centuries in the five ODI innings he has played so far, is coming into the team after an year and is eager to make the most of the opportunities. Rain interrupted the team’s training session on the eve of the second ODI here on Saturday. But despite the lack of practice, Iyer drew confidence from his India A stint in the Caribbean, where he was the third-highest run-getter in the one-dayers with 187 runs in four innings. “It’s going to be another two opportunities for me to make the best use of it. Hopefully this also doesn’t rain off. We are hardly getting any net practice. I am eager to go out there and carry forward the momentum which I got from my India A matches. Looking forward to a good series finish.” The first ODI in Guyana was washed out after only 13 overs. Asked about switching to ODIs from T20Is, Iyer said India have the momentum going into this series coming off a 3-0 sweep in the shortest format. “The momentum is always on our side. The way the team is playing currently, it’s totally amazing,” he said. “If one doesn’t perform, the next one raises his hand and he takes the responsibility to take the team through and this is what has been happening throughout the year.”last_img read more

Former CRA employee charged with accepting bribe from Tony Accurso

first_imgMONTREAL — Another former Canada Revenue Agency employee has been charged with taking bribes from one-time Quebec construction magnate Tony Accurso, the RCMP announced Friday.Antonio Girardi, 54, a former CRA team leader, faces charges including breach of trust by a public officer, forgery, fraud and conspiracy.The RCMP said in a news release that new evidence obtained in collaboration with authorities in Switzerland and the Bahamas uncovered the transfer of significant sums to offshore bank accounts.The police force alleges that Accurso, 67, paid $740,000 to Girardi and Adriano Furgiuele, who has already been charged, while they were employed at the CRA. He is also alleged to have paid more than $1.9 million to businessman Francesco Bruno, also already charged.The payments were allegedly in exchange for favourable treatment of the tax files of Mr. Accurso’s companies, Simard-Beaudry Constructions and Constructions Louisbourg.Girardi is the 15th person and eighth former CRA employee charged as part of the RCMP’s Projet Coche. He is scheduled to appear in court in Montreal Dec. 5.Accurso, Bruno and Furgiuele were previously each charged with six counts of conspiracy, fraud, forgery and breach of trust by a public officer in connection with the case.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Daniel Craig Named As UN Global Advocate For Elimination Of Mines

first_imgThe United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today announced the designation of renowned actor Daniel Craig as the first UN Global Advocate for the Elimination of Mines and Explosive Hazards.Ban Ki-moon (right), appoints actor Daniel Craig as the first UN Global Advocate for the Elimination of Mines and Explosive HazardsCredit/Copyright: UN Photo/Evan SchneiderIn a brief ceremony held at UN Headquarters, the Secretary-General thanked Mr. Craig for his commitment to support the UN’s vision of a world free from the threat of landmines and explosive remnants of war.Video: UN chief appoints actor Daniel Craig as global mine action advocate“Along with moviegoers worldwide, I have been on the edge of my seat watching Mr. Craig, as James Bond, defuse ticking time-bombs with seconds to spare. I am even more excited that Mr. Craig has agreed to use his star power to draw attention to the noble causes of mine destruction and mine awareness,” said Mr. Ban.“As 007, Mr. Craig had a ‘licence to kill.’ Today we are giving him a ‘licence to save,’” said the UN chief.The designation is one of a number of events organized to observe the 10th anniversary of the International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action and the Secretary-General expressed hope that Mr. Craig would raise public awareness about UN mine action efforts, visit mine action programmes worldwide, and assist in raising political and financial support.Mr. Craig, who has said he looks forward to taking up the Secretary-General’s invitation to visit UN mine action programmes in the coming months, added that he was humbled by his designation.“The briefing from the Secretary-General, and from all of the United Nations staff I have met, demonstrated the enormity of the task,” he said. “The use of improvised explosive devices in Iraq, Somalia and Mali; the widespread use of ‘barrel bombs’ in Syria, and the landmine contamination in Cambodia, Colombia and Afghanistan must all be addressed simultaneously. It is a big job. The United Nations needs political and financial support to succeed.”Video: Daniel Craig Message for Mine Action DayDesignation as UN Global Advocate for the Elimination of Mines and Explosive Hazards applies for three years but Mr. Craig has a long standing interest in the global campaign to ban landmines and explosive remnants of war and has already done work for the UN Mine Action Service (UNMAS), narrating two videos for the office in 2014.The Secretary-General paid tribute to Mr. Craig’s work and that of the Mine Action Service, which has been working to clear mines, educate people on risks, assist victims, destroy stockpiles and advocate for the elimination of landmines and explosive hazards since 1997.“The United Nations is playing a vital role in freeing the world from the threat of mines and explosive remnants of war,” said Mr. Ban. “I welcome the support of Mr. Craig to work on these issues. I count on his advocacy to make a difference.”last_img read more

Jimmy Carter Work Project To Build 100 Homes In 1 Week In

first_imgBringing together 1,500 volunteers from within Nepal and around the world, Habitat For Humanity’s 32nd annual Jimmy & Rosalynn Carter Work Project will take place in the Chitwan district in Nepal, Nov. 1-6, 2015.During the week, volunteers will build 100 homes in partnership with low-income families in need of permanent shelter.“Today these families are living in makeshift grass and thatch huts with mud floors, and over the course of the week we will replace these unstable structures with permanent housing that they can call home,” said Jonathan Reckford, Habitat for Humanity International’s CEO. “Such improved housing can help families feel a sense of security, as well as enable better educational and health outcomes and create improved employment opportunities. We are looking forward to building alongside Nepali families and helping them to achieve the strength, stability and independence they need to build a better life for themselves and their families.”Families will be selected based on need, their ability to repay an affordable loan and willingness to contribute their own labor – or sweat equity – toward the construction of their homes.In celebration of the upcoming build project, Habitat for Humanity Nepal held a groundbreaking ceremony on Aug. 28 with local families, government representatives and Habitat partners.“We are pleased to be part of an important, transformational project that will improve the lives of so many families in the Ratnanagar community in Chitwan,” said Desiree Bartosiak, Habitat for Humanity Nepal’s national director. “Thanks to the support of volunteers and sponsors, we will be able to help 100 families have safer places to live. They will no longer have to fear their roofs getting blown away by the wind or water leaking into their homes when it rains.”Habitat for Humanity Nepal has been partnering successfully in Chitwan for several years. Most recently, volunteers from 16 countries gathered last year to build homes in the district in partnership with 36 families during Habitat’s Everest Build III.Since 1984, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, have given a week of their time to help Habitat build and repair houses while raising awareness of the need for affordable housing around the world. Last month, President Carter shared that he has begun treatment for melanoma and his participation in this year’s build project will depend on counsel from his medical team.“President and Mrs. Carter have been champions of Habitat for Humanity for more than three decades, and we are grateful for their support and passion for our mission,” said Reckford. “We remain hopeful circumstances will allow them to join us in November as we continue to work toward a shared goal of building homes, community and hope in Nepal.”For more information about this year’s Carter Work Project, visit: /2015.last_img read more

Mohd Shami’s estranged wife held after high drama

first_imgLucknow: Hasin Jahan, estranged wife of cricketer Mohd Shami, was taken into custody by police in Amroha in Uttar Pradesh after she reached her husbands house and created a ruckus. She was later released on bail. Hasin Jahan reached her husband’s house in Sahaspur Ali Nagar village late on Sunday night. When her in-laws asked her to leave. she locked herself and her child in a room. The police were called. When the police failed to bring a truce between the warring parties, they took Hasin Jahan into custody. Talking to reporters, Hasin Jahan said: “I have come to my husband’s house and I have every right to stay here. My in-laws are misbehaving with me and the police is supporting them. They should have arrested them but they are taking me to the police station.” Mohd Shami is currently busy with IPL. He is a member of the Kings XI Punjab.last_img read more

Quebec retail brands Metro Jean Coutu merging to better face competition

MONTREAL — Two of Quebec’s iconic retail brands are merging to better face industry competition with Metro Inc.’s $4.5-billion takeover offer for the Jean Coutu pharmacy group.Shareholders of Jean Coutu (TSX:PJC.A) are being offered a combination of cash and stock worth about $24.50 per share.Uniting two highly-respected brands represents an exciting milestone for the company, said Jean Coutu, the founder of the company that bears his name.“Sometimes you have to forget your ego and try to combine with a real friend,” he said at a news conference on Monday.Coutu, 90, insisted he’s not emotional about the decision to sell and hang up his white pharmacist’s coat following a period of deep reflection for the family that has run it since 1969.“I think the move we are doing actually is good for both of these companies, it’s good for myself and it’s good for the future because we open up more opportunities than staying what we were.”After exiting the U.S. market in 2013 with the sale of its stake in the Rite-Aid pharmacy chain, Jean Coutu Group has had limited opportunities for growth.Meanwhile, the food and pharmacy industries have faced intensifying competition from other food retailers, Wal-Mart, Costco and Amazon’s entry in the grocery space with its purchase of Whole Foods.The merger follows Loblaw Companies Ltd.’s (TSX:L) $12.4-billion cash-and-stock deal in 2014 of Shoppers Drug Mart, which operates as Pharmaprix in Quebec.Metro CEO Eric La Fleche said the combination is a unique opportunity for two of Quebec’s best known companies to join forces to propel growth against retail giants.“We need this size to have economies of scale and efficiency to fight with the large players that we currently face,” he said.In addition to increasing food available in pharmacies and health products in Metro stores, La Fleche said the combined company will be better able to extend its reach and possibly grow in “other geographies.”“Perhaps down the road there could be an opportunity to broaden the pharmacy network in Ontario or elsewhere in Canada,” Le Fleche said.Quebec’s second-largest pharmacy network, including Jean Coutu and Brunet, will operate as a separate division of the grocery company, headed by Francois Coutu, son of the company founder.He said the company conducted exclusive negotiations with Metro after it came to the conclusion that the combination would help its chain to grow.“We came to the conclusion that Metro was the ideal partner,” Coutu told reporters.He said disagreement with Health Minister Gaetan Barrette’s efforts to reduce drug costs didn’t influence its decision to sell.Jean Coutu shareholders would own 11 per cent of Metro (including five per cent by the Coutu family) and the pharmacy chain will appoint two board members.The combined company will have nearly 87,000 workers at more than 1,300 stores — in Quebec, Ontario and New Brunswick — and about $16 billion in annual revenues.It is aiming for $75 million in cost savings within three years. Some of that will come from the closure of two pharmacy distribution centres that will affect a few hundred people. The work will be moved to Jean Coutu’s large new building and headquarters in Varennes, southwest of Montreal.The transaction requires regulatory approvals and support from two-thirds of the votes cast by Jean Coutu Group shareholders at a special meeting to be held in November. The deal is expected to close next spring.The Coutu family and affiliated entities which hold 93 per cent of voting rights, along with company directors and senior officers, have agreed to vote in favour of the deal.Metro said it plans to sell some or all of its 32.3 million shares in convenience store operator Alimentation Couche-Tard (TSX:ATD.B) over time to reduce its debt. read more

Childrens hospital a grassroots madeinSaskatchewan success story

Liam Richards / Saskatoon StarPhoenix He expects the hospital to be “close to capacity” in its first week of operations as children are transferred from Royal University Hospital and outlying areas of the province, he said.The four-storey hospital includes a dedicated care centre for pediatric care, a maternity ward and intensive neonatal care unit and a sleep lab, as well as play rooms and recreational spaces. Its design was influenced by consultation with more than 600 schoolchildren and adolescents and First Nations and Métis communities.Livingstone said its design and capacity will help reduce inequalities in health care for communities across the province, especially northern and First Nations communities that may not have had access to care in-province.“We incorporated everything we could that the children and families asked us to, so they felt they were coming home when coming to this hospital, regardless of where home is,” Livingstone said.The project received initial funding of $200 million in 2009 under former Sask. Party premier Brad Wall, who attended the ceremony, although its origins began in 2005 when the Sask. NDP first began discussions about a new facility. “They say patience is only a virtue when there is something worth waiting for,” Premier Scott Moe said. He called the new building a “great place of hope,” adding that arriving specialists will also teach at the neighbouring medical college, which was recently expanded from 60 to 100 seats.The hospital’s final cost is $285.9 million, which includes $257 million from the province and $28.3 million from the Pattison foundation, which also provided an additional $46.6 million for equipment and furniture.Pattison, the Saskatoon-born business magnate and philanthropist, focused his speech on thanking volunteers for their work.“Money is money, but people and volunteers and communities like this in this province, they contribute so much of their time and effort and that’s what makes a community, a city, a province or a country,” he said.Near the ceremony’s end, the giant scissors meant to cut the ribbon briefly malfunctioned — the last in a series of delays that have pushed back the hospital’s opening since it was announced. “I think she’d like it here,” he said.Saskatchewan and Prince Edward Island are the only two provinces in the country without a dedicated children’s hospital.Dr. Laurentiu Givelichian, a neonatal pediatric specialist, spearheaded initial calls for a dedicated facility.“For me, this is a 12-yea-old, long pregnancy and our baby is born today,” Givelichian said.The hospital will focus on the “sickest of the sickest” children across the province, freeing up resources at other hospitals and concentrating expertise and resources, he added.“This hospital right from the beginning was designed to be the hospital that connects Saskatchewan.”For many families, a child spending weeks or months in hospital care is a tragic reality.Thirteen-year old Blake Wheeler, who was born three months premature, shared his story at the ceremony, detailing the struggle his family faced as he received life-saving care.“My baby pictures show a tiny baby with feeding tubes and attached lungs,” he said.The ribbon is cut!Welcome, #Saskatchewan, to your new provincial maternal and children’s hospital.#JPCHOpening #HopeLivesHere— Pattison Children’s (@PattisonKids) September 5, 2019 Liam Richards / Saskatoon StarPhoenix Elara Johnson, age nine, speaks to former Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall following a ceremonial grand opening of the Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital in Saskatoon on Sept. 5, 2019. The hospital will open to the public on September 29th, 2019. Liam Richards / Saskatoon StarPhoenix A play room of the Jim Pattison ChildrenÕs Hospital in Saskatoon, SK on Thursday, September 5, 2019. The children’s hospital will open to the public on September 29th, 2019. Liam Richards / Saskatoon StarPhoenix Liam Richards / Saskatoon StarPhoenix Logan Johnson, age 5, gives a photograph to Dr. Marcus Wellbear, the children’s hospital mascot, following a ceremonial grand opening of the Jim Pattison ChildrenÕs Hospital in Saskatoon, SK on Thursday, September 5, 2019. The children’s hospital will open to the public on September 29th, 2019. Construction was halted in 2016 following the accidental death of a contractor on-site. Part of the site flooded earlier in May.Givelichian was suddenly dismissed from his role as head of the Saskatoon Health Authority’s pediatrics department the same month, amid reports of internal tensions among staff. Givelichian and Livingstone declined to speak about his termination.On Thursday, the focus was on the hope for a better future for Saskatchewan families.Gline’s deceased son, Ethan, is one of several names on the inside of the new hospital’s walls.“It was really powerful, seeing his name on that pillar,” Glines said. “It means a lot to us, that his life and even his death is meaningful.”Related NICU twin room of the Jim Pattison ChildrenÕs Hospital in Saskatoon, SK on Thursday, September 5, 2019. The children’s hospital will open to the public on September 29th, 2019. Saskatoon parent Lisa Glines has given birth to three medically complex children, one of whom died. Her family has travelled to Alberta, B.C., and the United States for medical treatment that was unavailable in Saskatchewan, an ordeal she said was financially expensive and emotionally draining.“Being close to home and being in a child and family-friendly environment is so important to the healing process,” she said.The new hospital has large wings and private rooms especially designed to allow families to stay together.Saskatchewan Health Authority CEO Scott Livingstone said the facility will have a staff of 72 specialists, 60 of whom are already hired. He said some positions like emergency room pediatric staff are difficult to recruit, but he expects the hospital to open on time barring unforeseen circumstances. Doctors, parents and politicians are celebrating the upcoming opening of Saskatchewan’s first children’s hospital, a long-awaited project that families say will address a critical care gap for sick children in the province.The 176-room Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital will open on the University of Saskatchewan campus on Sept. 29 — 12 years after an NDP government first announced it in 2007.“It’s a day that we’ve waited for, but one that was worth the wait,” said Grant Kook, a former Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital Foundation board member who lost his daughter to cancer at the age of six. The Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital in Saskatoon, SK on Thursday, May 2, 2019. New children’s hospital creates a ‘home-like environment’ Children’s hospital to be named after Jim Pattison following ‘historic’ $50 million gift Former Sask. health minister says it’s ‘unfortunate’ NDP snubbed at children’s hospital opening Liam Richards / Saskatoon StarPhoenix Philanthropist Jim Pattison speaks during the ceremonial grand opening of the Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital in Saskatoon on September 5, 2019. read more

Security Council extends mandate of UN office in GuineaBissau for a year

The United Nations Security Council today extended the mandate of the five-year-old UN Peacebuilding Support Office in Guinea-Bissau (UNOGBIS) for another year and expanded its work, citing the Transitional Government’s need for help in structuring mechanisms for national reconciliation and reform.In a unanimously adopted resolution, the Council noted the fragility of the West African country’s progress towards peace and stability, especially after the military mutiny and assassinations of 6 October. Fulfilling a pledge in a Presidential Statement last month that it would “consider suitable ways” of improving the Office’s role, the Council added several new initiatives to its technical work with a view to laying the groundwork for free and transparent presidential elections scheduled for next year.The new mandates included supporting political dialogue, promoting national reconciliation and respect for law and human rights, helping ensure a return to constitutional normalcy and helping to mobilize financial aid. Where UNOGBIS had previously been asked to get the Government to commit to “voluntary arms collection, disposal and destruction,” the Council now said UNOGBIS must “encourage the Government to fully implement the United Nations Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects.””Within the framework of a comprehensive peace-building strategy, [UNOGBIS should] actively support efforts of the United Nations system and Guinea-Bissau’s other partners towards strengthening state institutions and structures to enable them to uphold the rule of law, the respect of human rights and the unimpeded and independent functioning of the executive, legislative and judicial branches of Government,” the resolution said.In this regard, the Council cautioned that while addressing amnesty for those involved in military interventions since 1980, the National Assembly should “take account of the principles of justice and fight against impunity.”It urged the Government to undertake security sector reform and requested the addition of an Emergency Fund to the existing but expiring Emergency Economic Management Fund (EEMF), both to be administered by the UN Development Programme (UNDP). read more

Canadian dollar edges higher US currency weakens amid retail disappointment

by Malcolm Morrison, The Canadian Press Posted Oct 15, 2014 6:42 am MDT TORONTO – The Canadian dollar closed higher Wednesday as the greenback fell back a little on worse than expected U.S. retail sales.The loonie rose 0.38 of a cent to 88.83 cents US after plunging 7/10ths of a cent on Tuesday.The greenback eased somewhat as data showed that U.S. retail sales for September fell 0.3 per cent amid broad weakness. Economists had expected a 0.1 per cent decline.Other data Wednesday from the Federal Reserve showed the U.S. central bank’s latest economic survey indicated that most regions saw modest or moderate economic growth in September.However, the loonie was volatile, coming back from a low of 87.84 cents US as investors opted for safety and bought into the U.S. currency. The benchmark U.S. Treasury yield stood at two per cent Wednesday afternoon, down 0.2 of a point from Tuesday after having moved as low as 1.873 per cent.“All eyes are once again on the risk fallout across a number of markets (but sorely concentrated in oil) with little in the way of let-up overnight,” said Mark Chandler, head of Canadian FIC strategy at RBC Dominion Securities.“The weakness in oil prices is spilling over in a nasty fashion in Canada.”The commodity-sensitive Canadian currency has suffered from oil prices that have plunged recently to 2 1/2 year lows after the International Energy Agency slashed its oil-demand growth forecast for this year by more than a fifth. The November crude contract edged six cents lower to US$81.78 a barrel.The higher U.S. dollar helped depress other commodities as December copper gave back eight cents to US$3.01 a pound while the flight to safety pushed December bullion up $10.50 to US$1,244.80 an ounce. Canadian dollar edges higher, U.S. currency weakens amid retail disappointment AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email read more

More than 1000 children in northeast Nigeria abducted by Boko Haram since

Since the conflict started in northeastern Nigeria nearly nine years ago, at least 2,295 teachers have been killed and more than 1,400 schools have been destroyed. Most of these schools have not reopened because of extensive damage or ongoing insecurity.The issue of child abduction drew renewed attention when 276 girls were taken from a school in the town of Chibok in 2014.Four years on from this tragic incident, more than 100 girls have yet to be returned to their families, said UNICEF.The recent attack on a school in Dapchi, in which five girls lost their lives is just the latest indication that there are few safe spaces left for children in the northeast.“These repeated attacks against children in schools are unconscionable,” said UNICEF Representative in Nigeria Mohamed Malick Fall. “Children have the right to education and protection, and the classroom must be a place where they are safe from harm.”UNICEF stands with Nigerian authorities, who have made a commitment to make schools safer by protecting educational facilities from violence and military use during armed conflict. read more

Wrestling Ohio State opens up home schedule versus No 5 Missouri

OSU junior Kyle Snyder declared victor in a bout against Nebraska on Jan. 17, 2016. Credit: Lantern File PhotoSt. John Arena once again will roll out the Block-O stamped mats, reveal new championship banners and welcome anticipating wrestling fans for the first time this season on Thursday night, when it hosts a bout between top-ranked teams.The No. 4 Ohio State wrestling team will face off against the No. 5 Missouri Tigers at 7 p.m. “I am excited to be back home,” said junior heavyweight Kyle Snyder.  “Just the fans and being able to compete in front of your home crowd and see the people who really support you is always a big reason why I came back, and why I like to compete.”A varsity debut is being made Thursday night, as Luke Pletcher, freshman at 141 pounds, had his redshirt status pulled and will replace redshirt sophomore Ke-Shawn Hayes, after an undisclosed injury put Hayes out of competition for the rest of the 2016-17 season.OSU coach Tom Ryan has confidence in the newly called-up freshman before the dual match, looking into Pletcher’s future as a solid reason behind having him step up and compete earlier than expected.“Luke’s ready to wrestle,” Ryan said.  “He’s been working really hard, where he’s won his first two tournaments.  So he’s ready to roll.”Snyder anticipates a competitive match between wrestlers from both teams, noting the hype surrounding the top-ranked dual, headlined by two U.S. Olympians competing under one roof.  Missouri’s J’den Cox, a senior at 197 lbs., who earned bronze in the 86-kg freestyle event at the 2016 Rio Olympics, whereas Snyder won gold in the 97-kg division.  “Missouri’s got a good team,” Snyder said.  “Our team’s got a bunch of dudes who can wrestle hard and score a lot of points, so that’s what we’re going to try to do.”The 197-pound bout between OSU redshirt freshman Kollin Moore and Missouri’s Olympian, Cox, was one of several matches Ryan highlighted on Tuesday. He also said redshirt freshman Jose Rodriguez will make the varsity start in the 125-pound match.OSU won the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational over the weekend, but Ryan said there were still plenty of improvement to be made before wrestling against Missouri.“We’re working quite a bit on defense to leg attacks,” Ryan said.  “(Being on) bottom is a big issue for us, so heavy focus on getting out — we’ve struggled there a little bit.”Snyder’s focus lies mostly with the team victory rather than reveling in individual achievement against a top-five opponent.“I’m just going to wrestle, and I need to get bonus points,” Snyder said. “Maybe pin (his opponent), and we’ll see what happens.” read more

New Zealand to alter Crown Minerals Act to streamline mineral exploration

first_imgAccording to a report in The New Zealand Herald, the New Zealand Government is planning “significant” changes to the Crown Minerals Act in 2013 to make it easier for miners to explore and then extract minerals, and is expected to consult the public and industry soon. The Government has indicated for some time that it intends reviewing the Act, which sets out the regulatory framework for prospecting and mining, activities it wants to boost under its economic development plan. “We’re going to make significant changes to the Crown Minerals Act because conversations to date under previous ministers have found that there are opportunities to improve the way that companies can access our minerals, apply for opportunities to explore, that type of thing,” Energy and Resources Minister Phil Heatley was quoted as saying.A consultation paper will be released in the first half of 2012. However, the increased development of resources in New Zealand is not without controversy. The proposal comes as oil exploration company TAG Oil has written of turning the East Coast into the “Texas of the south” with the potential of building thousands of wells in the region. Mr Heatley would not comment on which aspects of the Crown Minerals Act would be amended, but said “we can certainly make it more streamlined as a general high-level term for these companies to identify probable areas”. Under Schedule Four of the Act, mining is prohibited on much of the conservation estate, and the National Government in 2010 backed off from plans to remove some areas from that protection in the face of significant public opposition.The NZ Herald article said that Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce had recently expressed confidence that the Government could “bring the public along” with its plans to develop a bigger mining industry. Mr Heatley said that although the Government planned to “get the best out of natural resources” to create jobs and lift the economy “we’re very, very conscious of our environmental obligations”. The Chief Executive of mining industry group Straterra, Chris Baker, was quoted as saying New Zealand needed a regulatory regime that was “competitive” with other countries to attract mining industry investment. “There’s no question a number of potential investors would say we are not competitive, so there needs to be changes that make the process, and this is not about lowering standards, it’s about making the process transparent, understandable and deliverable.”last_img read more

Greece Cyprus and Israel hold trilateral meeting with energy deal in sight

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram The leaders of Greece, Cyprus and Israel met in Nicosia on Tuesday, in what was the fourth in a series of trilateral summit meetings to determine energy cooperation and discuss regional development in the Eastern Mediterranean.Among the issues discussed by Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu, Greek PM Alexis Tsipras and Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades, were the role of Turkey in the region, the Cypriot issue, the Syrian crisis and tension in the Middle East.The meeting took place two days before Israeli forces were attacked by Iranian forces in the Golan Heights, escalating tension between the two countries. Israel has been warning Iran against establishing permanent military presence in Syria and has been one of the most prominent opponents of the nuclear deal the country had signed with the US, before President Trump decided to pull his country off it.Apart from issues relating to the Middle East conflicts, the trilateral meeting addressed the issue of international security, which is the next step after the energy agreements. Particular focus was given to the gas pipeline connecting Israeli and Cypriot deposits in the eastern Mediterranean with Europe – a particularly ambitious project that all parties see as a basis for further cooperation.The trilateral meeting confirmed the three countries as being the most stable democracies in the region, particularly affirming Greece geopolitical role. Tweeting about it, the Greek PM emphasized on the importance of this cooperation as a way to “reinforce stability and prosperity of our countries, and the wider region, amid a period full of challenges but also of opportunities”.last_img read more

Agent Franck Kessié is untouchable at AC Milan

first_imgFranck Kessié is one of the “untouchables” at AC Milan and will not be going anywhere right now, says his agentThe 21-year-old midfielder signed for the Rossoneri last year from fellow Serie A side Atalanta.But Kessié has recently been linked with a departure from the San Siro amid an alleged row between manager Gennaro Gattuso and new sporting director Leonardo.Paris Saint-Germain have been linked with the Ivory Coast international.“We’re only on the ninth day of the league season and I don’t know why we’re talking about the transfer market already,” Agent George Atangana told Calcio Mercato.“Franck is in his second year at Milan, where he didn’t arrive by chance, and he’s gradually completing his maturation process at a high level.“I have read about possible ruptures between Leonardo and Gattuso, with Kessié at the centre, I’m not aware of that dynamic.Rick Karsdorp, Roma, Serie AKarsdorp reveals he had too much stress at Roma Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 The Dutch defender has been with the Gialorrossi since 2017, but he has not enjoyed his time in the Italian Lega Serie A.“I have a good, established relationship with the club, and I’m sure if Milan wanted to sell Kessié I’d be the first to know.“On the contrary, in recent conversations, I’ve learned that Franck is one of Milan’s untouchables.“Of course in modern football no player is unsellable – Cristiano Ronaldo went from Real Madrid to Juventus, after one year [Leonardo] Bonucci went back to Turin and [Gonzalo] Higuain went the other way.“But I want to reiterate that Franck wants to continue his experience in a Milan shirt.”Kessié has managed seven goals and assists in 63 appearances across all competitions for Milan.The Italian club have him under contract until June 2022.last_img read more

Clam diggers expected to get plenty of December chances

first_imgLONG BEACH — Three razor clam digs totaling 11 days, including New Year’s Eve, tentatively have been scheduled through December for the Long Beach Peninsula.The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife announced the digs last week. Final approval depends on marine toxin tests indicating the clams are safe to eat.The Long Beach digs, including low tide and height, are:Nov. 30, 4:28 p.m., -0.1 feet; Dec. 1, 5:13 p.m., -0.9 feet; Dec. 2, 5:59 p.m., -1.4 feet; Dec. 3, 6:44 p.m., -1.7 feet; Dec. 4, 7:30 p.m., -1.7 feet; Dec. 14, 4:45 p.m., -0.1 feet; Dec. 15, 5:26 p.m., -0.3 feet; Dec. 16, 6:03 p.m., -0.4 feet; Dec. 29, 4:05 p.m., -0.2 feet; Dec. 30, 4:55 p.m., -0.9 feet, and Dec. 31, 5:42 p.m., -1.4 feet.“Although these digs are still tentative, tide levels look good,” said Dan Ayres, coastal shellfish manager “That’s especially true for the dig beginning Nov. 30, and for the New Year’s Eve dig.”As many as 20,000 diggers have descended on the beaches to gather razor clams on New Year’s Eve, he said.“Razor clam digging on New Year’s Eve has become a tradition for many Washingtonians,” Ayres said. “The tides aren’t conducive to a holiday dig every year, but they’re with us in 2013.”last_img read more