first_imgBoI is the second bank to have filed a case against the billionaire diamantaire, who is believed to be in New York after he had used an allegedly fake passport to escape Hong Kong after Indian authorities turned on the heat. Earlier, PNB had filed a recovery suit amount to $5 million, suggested the report.Read it at Times Now Related Itemslast_img

first_imgTrending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending 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 Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president Only six of 36 teams in a title series that went 0-2 down have gone on to reverse the outcome, but coach Norman Black said his Bolts are going to take inspiration from one of those teams that made the biggest comeback of all time.“Most of the teams down 0-2 have not won the championship,” Black admitted. “But we saw a team 0-3 down to win the championship. Until they (Gin Kings) win that fourth game, we will go out there fighting.”Black was talking of San Miguel Beer, which rallied against Alaska last season in this same tournament to win the championship by taking the last four games.The Meralco coach is not doubting his players as far as effort is concerned, actually praising them for going all out each game.“These are my players, and I’m sure they are trying their best. They are not performing the way they did in the elimination round, and I am sure [the] Ginebra [defense] has a lot to do with that,” Black said.ADVERTISEMENT Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Read Next Black better find a Pacquiao in his players quick, or, in using a boxing term to describe this series many saw to be close and tipped to go deep, this one would most likely not go the distance. “We took a big punch from them early in the game and survived that,” Cone said. “We managed to make it a possession-by-possession game [in the closing minutes] and had a good closing kick.”The analogy came a few minutes later, just after he praised LA Tenorio and the other Kings for a job well done.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 shutout“I’m just glad it wasn’t Manny Pacquiao who gave us that punch there, otherwise, we wouldn’t have gotten up from it,” he said with a smile, noting that Meralco still has a lot of fight left and the best-of-seven title series is far from over.“They still have many punches to give,” said Cone, coaching in his 31st title series. “We should be careful of that. We won two straight games and it only shows that they can also win two straight to tie this thing up. You can’t be pleased with yourself.” MOST READ Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netTim Cone has always been a great copy for reporters, dissecting the game, explaining how it was won or lost, etc.There’s also no one better in the PBA in giving out analogies to describe his games, with the close 86-76 Game 2 victory over Meralco in their PBA Governors’ Cup Finals being no exception.ADVERTISEMENT Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients  Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH View comments LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Aid expected to pour in for differently abled athletes Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIESlast_img read more

first_imgKevin Pietersen says he is proud of his unbeaten double hundred that gave England the upperhand in the ongoing first cricket Test against India as he had never worked this hard for runs in his career.”It’s something to be proud of, definitely. There’s been some fairly complimentary thing being said to me in the dressing room. I’ve never had to work harder,” Pietersen, who made an unbeaten 202 in England’s 474 declared, said after the second day’s play on Friday.”With the conditions I batted in, and having to face MS Dhoni for half an hour as well, I reckon it’s right up there with the hundreds I’ve scored. They bowled really well in swinging conditions and the pitch was seaming as well. I was missing balls by a couple of inches on occasions… it was real hard graft,” he added.About the course of the match, he expects the ball to seam and swing to put Indians in a spot of bother.”History tells us that getting result at the Lord’s is quite difficult. But the wicket we have at the moment is aiding seam and swing and we all know swing is alien to Indian batting,” Pietersen stated.Emboldened with his success, Pietersen revealed his ambition to enter the 10,000 Test runs club now that he has completed 6,000 runs.”I would love to have (10,000 runs). I love to set goal for myself and hopefully I would reach there if I bat this way.”This is Pietersen’s 18th century in his 75th Test but quite uncharacteristically, he never have had to graft in the manner he has done at Lord’s over the last two days.advertisement”The conditions were very difficult and they bowled very well. Sometimes you were playing and missing by couple of inches. It was a real hard graft. It made you wonder if India were batting yesterday where they must have been,” Pietersen said.Pietersen also gave credit to Alastair Cook, Andrew Strauss and Jonathan Trott for consuming a lot of overs.”Credit to the first three batsmen (deserve credit) for they ate up a lot of balls. Trott was magnificent again and Strauss batted for 80 balls which was great under the circumstances.”When it’s seaming and swinging you try to get overs in the other bowlers. They did a great job for men like Prior and Swann to take advantage of what’s been created a day before.Bell also batted beautifully.”Pietersen had two moments of anxiety — the first, when he was on 49 and Rahul Dravid appeared to have caught a chance at leg slip before replays ruled it in his favour.The second moment arrived when he was on 73 and umpire Billy Bowden gave him out caught behind off Dhoni only for the Decision Review System (DRS) to come to his aid.”I was on 49 when Rahul used the technology. He wasn’t sure (so he did it). He is a fantastic servant of the game, a true Indian legend. I have played with him in IPL for 2-3 years and there is no way he would have claimed a catch when he knew it wasn’t out.”As for the second chance, I had to review it. I can’t get out to Dhoni. Having said so it was difficult to see him through. He was moving it both ways and it was nipping around.He is a talented man.”Another Indian for whom Pietersen has only admiration and affection is Praveen Kumar, who grabbed his maiden five-wicket haul in Tests. .”I captained him for a year in the IPL. He is fantastic and a very skillful bowler. If there is anyone in the Indian team, I would be happy to have got five wickets, it would be PK. He is a fantastic guy,” Pietersen said.Pietersen revealed that England had decided in advance to give Indians half an hour of batting on Friday evening.”We wanted to bowl for half an hour at Indians. I kept passing messages to Strauss that if he really wanted to pull us out (declare) now, there are no dramas. My 200 wasn’t important?I had scored quite a few runs already. Team is more important and not a 200 in a Test match.”Pietersen took a dig at his critics who have been terming his form as none too great in recent times.”It’s been only six matches that I haven’t scored a century. I got a 85 against Sri Lanka in 100 balls.”You do go through good patches and bad patches. As long as you are true to yourself and continue to do hard work, you have to be rewarded.”advertisementPietersen returned to speak about Sachin Tendulkar around whom there is a huge expectation to get his 100th international century.”There are a lot of great cricketers who haven’t done well at Lord’s ? Warne, Ponting for example. We would try and make sure Sachin doesn’t get a hundred.”He also didn’t find fault with Harbhajan Singh’s bowling who went wicketless but conceded over 150 runs in England innings.”Harbhajan bowled very well. Harbhajan on that wicket which was friendly to seamers, tied it down. On occasions, even I found it very hard to score. I don’t think he bowled badly,” he concluded.last_img read more

first_imgColombo, Sep 24 (PTI) Sri Lanka should not be allowed to water down a UNHRC resolution on its alleged rights violations during its civil war with the LTTE, according to a prominent rights group which said that the current draft was “counterproductive” to the reconciliation efforts of the government. New York-based Human Rights Watch said Sri Lankas conduct of proposing amendment after amendment to water down United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) resolution on the report by the Human Rights High Commissioner was an attempt to try and strip away all references to implement the recommendations. The amendments affected by Sri Lankan tinkering include international participation in a justice mechanism and ending impunity. “Virtually no paragraph was left unscathed. The delegation even suggested deleting proposals to ensure victim and witness protection, to investigate attacks on human rights defenders and journalists and to address sexual violence and torture,” an HRW release said. Referring to the “trust us” plea by the Sri Lankan foreign minister Mangala Samaraweera, the HRW says “Sri Lanka is asking the world to accept its promise to being accountability as it sees fit.” But trust must be earned. Against decades long backdrop of politically motivated interferenceand inaction on justice issues, there is simply no basis whatever the sincerity of top officials to be confident of Sri Lankas ability to deliver justice without a significant international role, HRW asserts. The HRW statement followed the Sri Lankan Ambassador in Geneva statement that draft of the new resolution to be submitted by the US was not helping in adopting a collaborative approach to reaching consensus. Many paragraphs in the current draft are in fact counterproductive to the reconciliation efforts of the government, the release said. The UNHRC report as mandated by the resolution of 2014 suggested the setting up of a hybrid court with international judges, prosecutors and investigators. Sri Lanka is averse to the idea and insist on sticking to a local mechanism with international expertise. The report charged both the government troops and the LTTE of committing crimes against humanity between 2002 and 2011 in the islands civil war. PTI CORR AMS AKJ AMSadvertisementlast_img read more

first_imgNEW YORK — David Wright refused to make excuses for two lethargic losses to Miami. Still, he’s looking forward to a brief break before the rival Yankees come to Citi Field for a tantalizing three-game series between teams making a playoff push.Adam Conley slowed the Mets’ pursuit of a National League East title with a career-high seven innings, and the streaking Marlins handed New York a 6-0 loss Sept. 16.“There’s going to be days where we get outplayed and today we got outplayed in every area of the game,” Wright said. “I think the off day is coming at a good time.”Entering with an 8 1-2 game lead over Washington in the division, Manager Terry Collins chose to rest his left-handed hitters against Conley, a 25-year-old lefty.With reserve outfielder Juan Lagares leading off, the Mets were shut out for the first time since July 23, and they lost consecutive games for first time since losing to Boston on Aug. 28-29.The Nationals cut the lead by a game with a 12-2 victory at Philadelphia. New York’s magic number for the division title remained 10.“We had such an emotional high going coming out of Atlanta,” Collins said. “I think you’re seeing a little bit of a drainage. … I think we need to just get away for a little bit.”Rookie Steven Matz is set to start the opener Sept. 18 against the Yankees, who will send Masahiro Tanaka to the mound.Facing a makeshift lineup of all right-handers, Conley (4-1) had the best start of his young career in front of his wife and infant daughter.He allowed three hits and struck out six as Miami beat New York for a second straight night to secure its fifth straight series win — matching a franchise record set in 2003 for most consecutive series won in one season, according to STATS.“The thing for me that makes me the most proud is that these guys are playing the game the right way,” Manager Dan Jennings said on his birthday.“I think all any manager ever wants is for your team to step up and play the right way. It shows a pride factor and it creates fun. They’re having fun. We’re having fun right now. We realize that we’re not playing for the postseason but at the same time we’re playing to get ready for 2016.”Dee Gordon went 2-for-5 with a ninth-inning RBI to finish the season series against the Mets hitting .427 (35 for 82).All was quiet a night after Collins vowed the Mets will “answer in our own due time” to star Yoenis Cespedes’ getting hit by a pitch by Tom Koehler in the first inning of a 9-3 loss that ended an eight game winning streak.Martin Prado and J.T. Realmuto homered off Bartolo Colon, who lost for the first time since Aug. 9.Colon (14-12) was lifted with two outs in the sixth after walking Pablo Ozuna, the first free pass he allowed to a Miami batter in 55 innings dating to last season.Justin Bour had a sacrifice fly off Colon in the sixth and a long homer against Tyler Clippard in the eighth that made it 4-0.Colon allowed three runs and seven hits in 5 2-3 innings.“I was feeling good, thought I was executing well, but they attacked early and made some good swings,” Colon said through a translator.(HOWIE RUMBERG, AP Baseball Writer) TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

first_imgOAKLAND, Calif. — Yankees Manager Joe Girardi is still undecided whether or not to send Ivan Nova back to the bullpen once the rest of the starting rotation gets healthy.The way Nova has pitched as a starter, it’s going to be a tough call either way.Nova pitched six innings for his second win since moving into the starting rotation, Carlos Beltran hit a two-run homer and the New York Yankees held on to beat the Oakland Athletics 4-1 on May 19.“It is very different than being in the bullpen,” said Nova, who is unbeaten in three starts this season. “When you’re starting, if you don’t have it in the first inning you can have it in the second inning. This is my natural position and I feel good about it.”Nova (3-1) allowed one run and four hits in his longest outing this season since replacing the injured CC Sabathia in the Yankees’ rotation. The right-hander threw just 62 pitches, had three strikeouts and lowered his ERA to 1.65 in three starts.“He’s pitching great,” Girardi said. “We’ll worry about that when the time comes but I really like what he’s doing.”Aaron Hicks added an RBI double while Brett Gardner had two hits and two walks to help the Yankees win the opener of the four-game series.Oakland swept New York when the teams played in the Bronx but got little going against Nova and three relievers.“That’s the best we’ve seen (Nova) pitch,” A’s Manager Bob Melvin said. “That was a true hard sinker, and the curve was just enough to keep us off balance. He had a really good sinker today.”Josh Reddick homered for Oakland before leaving after fracturing the thumb on his left hand stealing second base in the seventh.Dellin Betances, Andrew Miller and Aroldis Chapman pitched the final three innings to complete the six-hitter for New York. Chapman worked the ninth for his fifth save.The Yankees missed multiple opportunities to break the game open but took a 2-1 lead on RBI doubles by Beltran in the third and Hicks in the sixth.Both runs came off Oakland starter Kendall Graveman (1-6).Beltran hit his ninth home run of the season and the 401st of his career in the ninth.Reddick homered off Nova in the fourth but the A’s managed just three runners after that and hit into two double plays.Gravemen, who beat the Yankees on April 20 for his only win this season, suffered his fifth consecutive loss. The right-hander gave up eight hits in 5 2-3 innings with three walks and four strikeouts.(MICHAEL WAGAMAN)TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

first_imgEngland’s Joe Root said that the omission of batsman Alex Hales has had a unifying effect on the team. Hales had been named in the preliminary squad for the World Cup that starts on May 30; despite serving a 21-day suspension following an “off-field incident”, which The Guardian later reported was a positive test for recreational drugs.After the matter went public, Hales was subsequently dropped from the team. Captain Eoin Morgan said that the incident had led to a “complete breakdown in trust” and that all the senior players of the team agreed that dropping Hales was the best decision.”Yes, absolutely,” Root is quoted as saying in a BBC Sport report. “Now we’re back playing cricket, which is really good for the group. We can concentrate on our full focus being on the cricket going into the World Cup.”Root, who is England’s Test captain, also said that Jofra Archer can still make a late entry into the World Cup squad. The Barbados-born pacer was impressive during the little play that was possible in England’s washed out first ODI against Pakistan.”He’s been extremely impressive so far,” said Root. “It’s early days, but the way he bowled yesterday was particularly good.”When guys come in and perform well, that is good for the squad. If guys are performing at the best of their ability, that will improve the standard of the group.”Root also clarified that Archer’s potential late entry won’t cause any disharmony in the team. “I don’t think he’s created any rifts, uncertainty, or problems in the team, it’s purely providing competition and that can only be a good thing,” he said.advertisementAlso Read | With Jofra Archer in the World Cup, England will be a better team: Liam PlunkettAlso Read | Jonny Bairstow picks World Cup glory over Ashes win for England in 2019Also Seelast_img read more

first_imgBRUSSELS – The North Atlantic Treaty Organization is lending its support to the U.S.-led coalition against the group calling itself the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.“NATO joining the coalition to defeat (ISIL) is a strong political message of unity in the fight against terrorism,” Sec.-Gen. Jens Stoltenberg said Thursday.The decision came as NATO leaders are gathering in Brussels to discuss how they can better share the cost of defence and co-ordinate efforts in the fight against terrorism, which was once again thrust into the spotlight after the deadly attack on a concert arena in Manchester, England this week.Those are the main items on the agenda, but the main motivation behind this ad hoc meeting is to introduce U.S. President Donald Trump to NATO — a military alliance he once called “obsolete” — and convince him it is still relevant today.All 28 NATO allies, including Canada, are already part of the anti-ISIL coalition, and the military alliance has been involved in training Iraqi forces.Still, Trump had been urging the alliance to take on a bigger role.Stoltenberg said that by formally joining the coalition, NATO will be better able to co-ordinate its efforts there, but it does not mean it will be involved in combat operations.It will mean practical support, such as more flying hours for its fleet of its surveillance aircraft, information-sharing and air-to-air refuelling.NATO will also set up a new terrorism intelligence cell at its headquarters in Brussels, which will include getting better at sharing intelligence on foreign fighters, and appoint a special co-ordinator to oversee the counter-terrorism efforts.Trump has also been vocal about his demand for the other members of NATO to pick up their fair share of the tab when it comes to defence spending, which is where things could get uncomfortable for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.Canada spends just over one per cent of its GDP on defence, which is just half of NATO’s target and puts the country among the bottom third of allies.The Liberal government has argued that its contribution is bigger than the numbers suggest, pointing to its commitment to send up to 455 troops to head up a multinational mission in Latvia, as part of efforts to curb Russian aggression in the Baltics, as another way to contribute.There seemed to be some support for that notion from Stoltenberg.“This is not just about cash, but also modern capabilities and meaningful contributions to NATO’s missions, operations and engagements,” Stoltenberg said Thursday.“Today, we will take steps to keep up the momentum,” adding that NATO members will agree to come up with annual national plans to help them meet the target.There has been much speculation about the role that Russia will play in the talks, especially given explosive allegations and domestic U.S. investigations of close ties between the White House and Russia.Eastern European partners are concerned with Russian aggression and there are also growing concerns around the relationship between Turkey and Moscow, and their roles in the Syrian conflict.Stoltenberg, though, tied the issue of Russia to the one of burden-sharing, which is top of mind for Trump.“One of the reasons why we are investing in our collective defence, why we are increasing our presence in the eastern part of the alliance, is of course as a response to the aggressive actions of Russia we have seen in the Ukraine,” Stoltenberg said.“So, Russia is on NATO’s agenda,” he said.Stoltenberg also said that NATO will assess its “level of support and the future of the mission” in Afghanistan, where the alliance currently has 13,000 troops involved in training.“Our aim is to train the Afghan forces to enable them to step up their efforts in stabilizing their own country, countering Taliban but also fighting different terrorist groups in Afghanistan, including (ISIL),” Stoltenberg said.Stoltenberg said NATO will decide on exact troop levels later this year, but will not return to a combat operation in Afghanistan.— Follow @smithjoanna on Twitterlast_img read more

first_imgVANCOUVER – There’s little evidence that legalized marijuana poses a threat to public health and safety, and there may be benefits, says a new study from Canadian doctors and researchers.The report, submitted to the Senate this week, outlines the positive and negative impacts legalization has had in other jurisdictions.“It hasn’t been a public health disaster or crisis yet, but there are some key areas that we need to watch,” said Rebecca Haines-Saah, a public health specialist at the University of Calgary and one of the report’s authors.The federal government has promised to legalize recreational marijuana later this year under Bill C-45, which is expected to go to a final vote in the upper house Thursday.Dr. M.J. Milloy with the B.C. Centre on Substance Use worked on the study and said researchers did not find significant declines in road safety in American states where marijuana had been legalized, but they did find a drop in alcohol sales.They also found that rates of fatal opioid overdoses went down in some places.“There is evidence to suggest that when legal cannabis is available, people substitute that for other substances,” he said.“We are hopeful that we might see some of the same benefits here.”B.C. declared a public health emergency because of overdose deaths in April 2016. The provincial coroner’s service has said there were more than 1,400 fatal overdoses across B.C. last year.The Senate report also outlines 28 indicators to watch for as Canada legalizes marijuana, grouped under the themes of public safety, cannabis use trends, other substance use trends, cardiovascular and respiratory health, and mental health and cognition.The indicators include instances of cannabis-impaired driving, rates of use among youth and the number of marijuana-related calls to poison control centres.Watching those areas will be key to determining if marijuana policy has been a success, said Haines-Saah.It’s possible some of the negative indicators will see an uptick, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that legal pot is having a detrimental affect, said Haines-Saah.She noted that some American jurisdictions have reported increases in cannabis-related calls to poison control centres following legalization.Those incidents may have been happening previously, too, but parents were too scared to call because the drug was illegal, Haines-Saah said.It’s important to look at the broad picture instead of specific instances, she said.“I think we’ll see more people reporting use and harms in the first few years, but that doesn’t mean they’re real harms. It just means that reporting bias has been removed because of the stigma.”Data about many of the suggested indicators is already being collected by various levels of government, and researchers or statisticians can use that to look at the impact of changes to marijuana policy, Milloy said.Legalization is a “fundamental change” and decisions about public health need to be informed by scientific evidence, he added“We really think that closely monitoring and evaluating the possible impact of cannabis legalization on public health is key.”last_img read more

first_imgTORONTO – When Mark Wlodarski started collecting bobbleheads about a decade ago, dollar signs were far from his mind.The Toronto Blue Jays, whose bobbleheads he coveted most, Wlodarski says were “just horrid” and their merchandise were hardly desirable.That changed around 2015. The Jays shot up in the standings, bolstered by newcomers Josh Donaldson and Troy Tulowitzki, who came with bobbleheads that attracted droves of collectors.The shift taught Wlodarski — the owner of about 650 bobbleheads at his collecting peak, who insists his love of the figurines is about passion not profit — plenty about how to master the collectibles market.The market can be fraught with high price tags and even higher emotions, but experts say there are tens of thousands of dollars to be to made, if you’re willing to part with high-value items like baseball cards, comics, coins, stamps and vintage film posters.They say maximizing what can be made or nabbing an item for as little as possible can be tough because it takes a mix of timing and luck.The trick to making money off collectibles, Wlodarski said, is learning how to assess a market.“You have to know when it’s time to get into any hobby, and get out of any hobby,” he said.To do that, Wlodarski keeps an eye on how teams are performing and how popular characters and other celebrities are. If a team is headed for the playoffs or a television show, movie or character are really taking off, collectibles tied to them are worth more and it’s a good time to sell, but a terrible time to buy. When that popularity is waning, there are generally better deals to be found, but if you’re selling, less money to be made.Bobbleheads given away recently at sports games or events will be plentiful and won’t command much cash, but ones from older seasons, when few were made, can be worth a pretty penny, he said.Not everything will increase in value over time though, said Stephen Ranger, the vice-president of auction and appraisal business Waddington’s.“The things your mother and your grandmother collected are not always the things that have sustained market value,” he said. “Our tastes have changed. It would be rare to find a 30-year-old who is interested in Royal Doulton figurines.”Ranger said fine wines from Bordeaux and Burgundy are proving to be quite valuable as is art from Canadian modernists including Jack Bush, Harold Town and Claude Tousignant.Other experts say many Beanie Babies, a hit with kids in the 1990s, aren’t just tiny in size, but also now in value. Many also say old-fashioned ceramics can be hit-or-miss too.If there’s an item you’re keen on nabbing, Wlodarski said it’s imperative to have a budget “or else you could go broke obtaining it.”If you’re on the selling side, Kent Sikstrom, Kijiji Canada’s community relations manager, said photos taken from multiple angles and in good lighting can increase what a seller will make when advertising on online platforms. Descriptions of the collectible with information on its age, dimensions and condition help too.Posts made on the online sales platform on or near weekends usually net more traffic because more people have time to browse on Saturday and Sunday, said Sikstrom, who collects action figures and hockey cards.If you’re selling an entire collection, Sikstrom recommended splitting up the items into separate posts because it’s harder to find someone willing to shell out for every item you have for sale.If it’s taking a while to sell something or you’re hesitant to post obscure collectibles for sale, he reminds, “There is always a collector for everything.”“One person’s trash is another one’s treasure.”last_img read more

“There are complaints that some countries have not been dealt with carefully, other countries believe it was not democratic, other groups believe that the matter has been out of the hand of the UN and they would like also that UN would take over this problem again,” he told a year-end news conference in New York about the summit, which set no mid- or long-term limits on global warming greenhouse gas emissions for individual countries.“But I think we should be realistic that what happened there, it is really something positive,” he said, noting that he had not expected a concrete binding resolution to emerge. “I think that the conclusion of a certain agreement was really good progress and we have to follow that up.“We all agree that the United Nations should take the lead and we’ll continue to take the lead and we will have certainly the summit of Mexico. We’ll finish what we have started in Copenhagen. But I’m very happy that the majority of countries of the world are aware of the dangers of this problem and they would like to do what they have to do to save the world and to have an agreement, a binding agreement.”Asked about the years-long debate on expanding the Security Council to represent the world as it is now, not as it was decades ago when the 15-member body was last upgraded, Dr. Treki stressed that everyone is agreed about reform. “We need reform in the United Nations, in the General Assembly especially,” he said, reprising his call for the revitalization of that 192-member body in the interests of real democracy. At present only Council decisions are binding. He noted the different points of view on reform – “some people want to enlarge the Council with a new member, permanent member, with veto, without veto” – and underscored African complaints that their continent is deprived of representation as a permanent member.“I see from my contacts that all agree the African situation should be corrected and Africa should be represented,” he said.Asked whether relations between the UN and the United States had improved under the administration of President Barack Obama, Dr. Treki referred to the new US leader’s pledge at the General Assembly opening in September to cooperate more and more with the UN.He said he had talks in Washington last week with State Department officials and members of Congress and “they showed me certainly their support for the United Nations.“We need to have more discussions especially with the members of Congress,” he added, noting that he had invited some of them to come to New York to meet with UN ambassadors. “They assured me that they believe that the… problems facing the world as a whole need a collective action through the United Nations.” 22 December 2009While most countries are not happy with the outcome of this month’s summit on climate change in Copenhagen, “really good progress” was made towards a binding agreement “to save the world,” with the United Nations leading the way to possible adoption at next year’s meeting in Mexico, General Assembly President Ali Treki said today. read more

Major tea company Tetley – which is owned by India’s Tata Global Beverages – said it was in touch with the Rainforest Alliance regarding the findings. The expose raises questions about the effectiveness of ethical label schemes – which are used by major tea brands and can mean higher prices – and their ability to detect and combat labour abuses of workers at the bottom of global supply chains. Sri Lanka is the world’s third biggest tea exporter behind China and India, earning $1.4 billion last year, and about 4 percent of a 21 million population live and work in tea estates.Sumathi, 25, a tea picker who works on a Rainforest Alliance and Fairtrade-certified estate, said her daughter was born with a heart condition and needed frequent medical care. The deductions on her monthly payslip – taken without her consent – amounted to $35, enough for 10 trips to hospital.“Why would I let them take my money when I don’t even have enough to bring my baby to the doctor?” she said.Tharshini, 51, who also works on an estate backed by the two certifiers, said she was suffering from malnutrition and anemia.Her most recent monthly payslip showed she took home $4.50 after the estate deducted 87 percent of her earnings for debt repayment and various fees to pay towards an estate funeral fund, a co-op fund, tea and the salary slip itself.“I’m sick a lot because I don’t have enough money to buy food or medicine,” she said.Tharshini said if she picked less than 18 kg of tea, the estate paid her for a half-day, regardless of how many hours she worked, adding that she rarely met the quota due to exhaustion. The same quota policy was in effect at several other tea estates, according to both estate managers and workers. Wages were also halved if workers arrived late by just 15 minutes.According to the payslips gathered by the Thomson Reuters Foundation, workers at Fairtrade-certified estates were subject to 74 percent wage deductions on average, while those at Rainforest Alliance-backed estates saw 65 percent taken away. Several of the payslips showed deductions of over 75 percent – and slashing wages by more than three-quarters is illegal under the Wages Board Ordinance and the Allowances to Plantation Workers Act, said Dissanayake, the former government lawyer.The 17 wage slips showed labourers taking home an average of $1.54 daily after debt repayments, salary advances, and fees. In reality, some workers earned less as wages being halved for not meeting quotas or arriving late does not appear on the payslips. Several labourers also complained that their estates only abided by the certifiers’ ethical standards during audits but they were afraid of reprisals if they revealed this to auditors.“Normally we don’t wear the protective gear when we spray chemicals, but on the day that Fairtrade comes, the manager tells us we have to,” one worker said on condition of anonymity.Four tea estate managers defended their working conditions, with one saying his plantation did not do anything to prepare for audits because “we implement the standards perfectly”. “I’m under pressure from the workers on one side and from the management on the other side to maximize profits,” said one of the estate managers, declining to be identified.Indra Gallearachchi, deputy general manager at the Rainforest Alliance-certified Robgill estate, said wage deductions paid for services to make “workers’ lives easier”.Major tea companies have increasingly relied on certification schemes to assure consumers over ethical produce.Some firms are now setting their own standards but leading brands, including Tetley and Twinings, still say they source all or most of their tea via Rainforest Alliance and Fairtrade. Tetley said it was in contact with Rainforest Alliance but had not sourced tea from the certified estates visited by the Thomson Reuters Foundation in the past year, although seven of them feature on Tetley’s supplier list that is available online.Twinings’ Head of Social Impact, Céline Gilart, said the firm was fully committed to ethical sourcing, but that it has “limited leverage” because it does not own the tea estates. The Thomson Reuters Foundation’s investigation echoed a 2018 report by Britain’s Sheffield University, which found little difference in the conditions of 600 tea workers on certified and non-certified farms in Assam and Kerala, in India.Genevieve LeBaron, a politics professor who led the two-year research, said major tea companies must shoulder some of the blame for labour exploitation on plantations. “There just simply isn’t enough money going to the bottom end of the supply chain,” she said.“Companies could most certainly address that if … they paid enough for tea to ensure that workers had a living wage.”(This story was originally published by the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women’s and LGBT+ rights, human trafficking, property rights, and climate change) Labourers in Nuwara Eliya – a district in Sri Lanka’s central highlands – said their wages were also halved if they failed to meet a daily picking quota or arrived to work late. Such deductions violate several labour laws – the Industrial Disputes Act, Wages Board Ordinance and the Allowances to Plantation Workers Act – said four lawyers including Lahiru Dissanayake, who used to work for Sri Lanka’s attorney general. Plantations in Sri Lanka that supply tea stamped slavery-free to top global companies are under investigation by ethical label groups after an expose found illegal wage deductions that have left some workers ill and unable to afford healthcare.An investigation by the Thomson Reuters Foundation found some workers at tea estates certified by Rainforest Alliance and Fairtrade taking home as little as 26 Sri Lankan rupees (14 U.S. cents) a day after fees and deductions levied without consent. Sri Lanka’s labour ministry declined to comment on the findings despite repeated requests over a two-week period.The Minister of Plantation Industries, Navin Dissanayake, said he “disagreed” that workers’ wages were being halved. Wage slips from 17 workers at nine Rainforest-certified tea estates – six of which were also backed by Fairtrade – showed daily earnings widely being cut by more than three-quarters for debt repayments, salary advances and a laundry list of fees. “Tea estate workers are still not treated as citizens,” said lawyer Tambiah Eliyathamby, adding that halving workers’ wages violated the legally binding collective bargaining agreement between estates and unions within the Industrial Disputes Act.“They are treated as inferior and face discrimination,” said Eliyathamby, who heads Thambiah Law Associates, a private firm, and is general secretary of the People’s Workers’ Union.Dissanayake, who was appointed minister of plantations in 2015, said he was unaware of earnings being cut over quotas. “(However) I concede that estate workers are one of the most impoverished communities with the highest rate of malnourishment,” he said. “The situation has improved over the past 20 to 30 years, but that doesn’t mean we should be happy.” Rainforest Alliance and Fairtrade both said they were investigating the findings as deducting wages without workers’ consent was not allowed by law and contravened their standards.“The allegations you have reported to us … if confirmed, represent serious violations of the Fairtrade Standards,” said a Fairtrade spokeswoman, adding that the group’s independent certifier, FLOCERT, would follow up on the findings.A spokeswoman for Rainforest Alliance said it was investigating the findings, and the estates in question could “have their certification status suspended or cancelled”. Consumer goods giant Unilever – which owns a dozen well-known tea brands from PG Tips to Lipton – said it was “deeply concerned” and would investigate. read more

Hamilton Police say two suspicious fires near Binbrook are being investigated as possible arson.Fire and police crews responded to a fire at a vacant home on Golf Club Rd. around 3:30 a.m. Thursday.Within minutes, a second blaze broke out less than 10 minutes away at a barn on Westbrook Rd.The two fires are believed to be linked because of the close time and location, police said in a release.Investigators with the arson unit are looking to speak with anyone who saw people or vehicles in the area at the time.They are also looking for any surveillance video. read more

SAN FRANCISCO — With Pacific Gas & Electric in bankruptcy as it faces billions of dollars in claims over wildfires started by its equipment, San Francisco is offering to buy pieces of the utility’s assets for $2.5 billion so the city can run parts of the power system on its own.Mayor London Breed and City Attorney Dennis Herrera said in a statement that the offer was “competitive, fair and equitable” and will lead to financial stability for the beleaguered investor-owned utility.“We look forward to positive, collaborative discussions with PG&E on this critical issue,” the statement issued Sunday said. “Throughout this process we will protect the best interests of our city as we strive toward the independent energy future that San Francisco deserves.”The offer was presented before PG&E was expected to submit its plan Monday for reorganizing its finances to get out of bankruptcy.PG&E said in a statement that it doesn’t believe the sale would be “in the best interests of our customers and stakeholders.”San Francisco, where PG&E was founded more than a century ago, began examining options for taking over pieces of the utility after it filed for bankruptcy protection in January.A May report by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission said public ownership of the electric grid could help the city become carbon neutral by 2030 and stabilize electricity rates.The city already has its own power system but relies on PG&E to deliver electricity to many customers.California lawmakers passed a measure in July to bolster PG&E by requiring any local government’s purchase of utility assets to be approved by state regulators.Cities previously could use eminent domain to take ownership of assets at fair market value. The change would allow regulators to consider other costs in deciding the purchase.Breed, along with San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo and Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, told lawmakers that expanding regulators’ oversight would infringe on cities’ authority to provide electric service in the future.A provision in the legislation signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom also requires new owners to protect PG&E workers’ jobs for three years. San Francisco said it would recruit PG&E employees to operate the proposed municipal system and honour their union contracts.PG&E filed for bankruptcy because it said it could not afford billions in damages from recent deadly wildfires caused by downed power lines and other company equipment, including a November fire that killed 86 people and largely destroyed the town of Paradise.The new law creates a fund of up to $21 billion to help PG&E and the state’s other major utilities — Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas & Electric — pay out future claims as climate change makes wildfires across the U.S. West more frequent and more destructive.To use the fund, companies would have to meet new safety standards to be set by state regulators and take steps such as tying executive compensation to safety.PG&E also must emerge from its bankruptcy proceedings and settle its pending lawsuits from homeowners, insurance companies and local governments by June 30 of next year to tap into the fund.Daisy Nguyen, The Associated Press read more

“MONUC is concerned by increasing acts of gangsterism in Kinshasa and understands the population’s apprehension,” the acting deputy spokesperson for the UN Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUC), Rachel Eklou Assogbavi, told journalists yesterday.Asked whether MONUC would toughen its stance against insecurity in Kinshasa, the military spokesman Colonel Thierry Provendier said: “Criminal activities are legally-related matters. The Transitional Government is responsible for law enforcement and security. MONUC calls on the authorities and the Interior Minister, in particular, to meet the population’s security expectations, so that voter registration can start peacefully.”With regard to the eastern Ituri province, Col. Provendier said that despite the UN-imposed arms embargo, “supply routes are countless. MONUC has stepped up its border patrols and the pressure maintained thus far makes illegal weapons supplies to DRC difficult and risky.””The effectiveness of this embargo relies on the cooperation of the nine States bordering the DRC,” however, he noted.On the 11 June attack on the MONUC patrol operating on Lake Albert, which is a natural border between DRC and Uganda, he said, “MONUC operations deter the few hard-liner militia who have so far failed to realize that disarming and returning to a civilian life is their only viable option.”Ms. Eklou Assogbavi added, “MONUC warns militiamen who have not yet disarmed and reiterates that, with the exception of Bunia, all other transit sites will be closed by June 25. There will be no delay.”As of June 14, “14,827 persons, including 4,204 children, had handed over their weapons,” she said.Referring to the 16 June Day of the African Child, MONUC Child Protection’s Daniela Baro said the ongoing integration of armed forces had led to the release by militias of 7,908 children, including 1,082 girls, but the recruitment of child soldiers continued in Ituri, even though the recruiters were subject to investigation and prosecution. read more

MONTREAL – Transcontinental says it will further reduce its printing capacity by closing a plant in the Montreal area next month that will result in the loss of about 150 jobs.Canada’s largest printer said Thursday that its plant in LaSalle, Que. will close Dec. 20.Marian Kerr, senior vice-president of retail and newspapers, said the decision was made to remain competitive as the printing industry continues to undergo major transformation that is altering supply and demand.“Given the capacity and potential of our network, we have concluded that we have excess production capacity in relation to market demand,” she said in a statement.It is the latest of a series of similar moves that have been made across the country, especially following the acquisition last year of most of the former Quebecor World assets in Canada held by Quad/Graphics.Transcontinental (TSX:TCL.A) announced in March that about 500 jobs would be cut with the closure of two of the six Quad/Graphics plants, one in Dartmouth, N.S., and one in suburban Montreal.The acquisition of the Canadian assets of Quad/Graphics was expected to bring in $230 million in new business and generate at least $40 million in net earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization over 12 to 24 months.In 2011, Transcontinental consolidated production at a Montreal printing plant and closed two plants, one in Quebec and one in Manitoba.Transcontinental is the largest printer in Canada and the fourth-largest in North America and has about 10,000 employees. It publishes consumer magazines and French-language educational resources, as well as community newspapers in Quebec and the Atlantic provinces. It also has a network of more than 3,500 websites.On the Toronto Stock Exchange, Transcontinental’s shares closed down three cents to $10.27 in Thursday trading. by News Staff Posted Nov 1, 2012 5:17 pm MDT Transcontinental closing Montreal-area printing plant, 150 jobs will be lost AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email read more

Speaking in Geneva, Santiago Canton, Chairperson of the Commission of Inquiry on the 2018 protests in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, explained what the panel knew about the Israeli Defence Force’s relevant military protocols with regard to demonstrators. “Under the rules, they could be shot in the leg at any moment,” he said. “While in theory, this key inciter status was to be conferred only when the crowd was posing an imminent threat to life, in reality – and that has been one of the main findings of the Commission – that was rarely the case.”Mr. Santiago’s comments followed his assertion that the panel’s “main conclusion…is that we found reasonable grounds to believe that the Israeli Security Forces committed serious violations of human rights and international humanitarian law”.During last year’s demonstrations in the Gaza Strip – referred to as the “Great March of Return and the Breaking of the Siege” – the Commission found that 189 Palestinians were killed, 183 with live ammunition. Victims included children, persons with disabilities – including a double amputee who was shot and killed while sitting in his wheelchair – journalists and medical personnel.Less than two weeks from the anniversary of the beginning of the protests, the panel’s concern is to avoid a repeat of deadly demonstrations such as those on 30 March, 14 May and 12 October. “We hope that the international community gets involved in order to avoid more killings and more shootings during the anniversary,” Mr. Santiago told reporters after his address to the Human Rights Council earlier in the day. “I think that is why this presentation was important. It’s important that Israel change the rules of proceedings and stop the shootings, basically.”‘Triggers were pulled 6,000 times’In addition to those killed during weekly protests at the border fence with Israel, the UN panel underscored the damage caused by high-velocity bullets, which replaced the rubber bullets initially used against demonstrators.“In the case of many of the killings, there were very small entry wounds and huge exit wounds,” Commission member Sara Hossain said. “We also have detailed evidence about the kinds of bullets, but also about the use of long-range sniper rifles, sophisticated optical aiming devices,” she added. “We know that the target could be magnified in the sight of the snipers, so they could know the consequences of at least some of the shootings. But nevertheless, triggers were pulled, and the trigger was pulled more than 6,000 times.”Asked about the legality of targeting unarmed protesters in a crowd, the Commission insisted that doing so based on individuals’ membership of an armed group was unlawful.“We believe that in situations of crowd control and in situations that we deem to be civilian in nature, if there are individuals in the crowd that may be a legitimate target, you still cannot shoot at the crowd, because you may kill or shoot innocent individuals”, Mr. Santiago said.Israel probe into 11 incidents welcomedThe Commission also welcomed inquiries into 11 incidents which Israel has said it will undertake, although Ms. Hossain called for more transparency.“On the nature of investigations, for the ones from Israel, they have announced that there are these 11 incidents…but that is after one year,” she said. “And there is no announcement as to the progress of those investigations and we think that there is at least a moral obligation to disclose what the outcome of those is.”The issue of demonstrators launching incendiary kites and balloons from Gaza was also covered in the Commission’s report to the Human Rights Council, Ms. Hossain said, noting that “significant property damage” had been caused in southern Israel.In a related development on Monday, Human Rights Council-appointed Special Rapporteur Michael Lynk warned of an impending “humanitarian catastrophe” in Gaza linked to the “stifling restrictions” on the Strip’s residents.“Israel has maintained a hermetic air, sea and land blockade around Gaza, controlling who and what enters and leaves the (Gaza) Strip,” Mr. Lynk told the Council. “For nearly five million Palestinians living under occupation, the degradation of their water supply, the exploitation of their natural resources and the defacing of their environment, are symptomatic of the lack of any meaningful control they have over their daily lives.”A major concern is the “collapse of natural sources of drinking water in Gaza and the inability of Palestinians to access most of their water sources in the West Bank”, the Special Rapporteur said.Scale of Gaza victims’ needs is immense, warns UN health agency Coinciding with developments at the Human Rights Council on Monday, the World Health Organization (WHO) appealed for $5.3 million to help the many thousands of Gazans hurt and handicapped in the demonstrations.“The sheer magnitude of trauma needs in Gaza is immense; every week injured patients continue to arrive at hospitals requiring complex long-term treatment.” said Dr Gerald Rockenschaub, head of WHO’s office for the Occupied Palestinian Territory.WHO reiterated concerns that the upcoming one-year anniversary of the Great March on 30 March could result in further casualties and an increase in people requiring trauma care and rehabilitation services. read more

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has welcomed today’s announcement by home secretary Theresa May that from April 2011, the majority of highly skilled workers entering the UK under Intra-Company Transfer arrangements will be exempt from government’s proposed immigration cap.This change in policy, called for by SMMT in September, sends a strong signal to potential investors about the UK’s positive business environment. It will also assist the rebalancing of the country’s economy, strengthening industry’s global leadership in low carbon technology development and production. “Today’s announcement by government is welcome news for the UK automotive industry as highly skilled employees from across the world are essential to maintaining and improving our global productivity and competitiveness,” said SMMT chief executive, Paul Everitt. “The UK is already leading the way for low carbon technology and this latest decision will enhance the UK’s appeal as an investment location for international companies.” In late September, SMMT called for intra-company transfers to be excluded from government’s migration limits, over concerns that capping the number of highly skilled migrants could negatively impact UK competitiveness and the re-balancing of the economy. In July, the Home Office imposed a temporary limit on non-EU migrant workers, which caps workers to 24,100 from June 2010 to April 2011. Government then produced a consultation on how a permanent cap could be implemented, a move that SMMT lobbied to be adjusted to take account of highly skilled workers.Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) SMMT warned that limiting intra-company transfers through caps, lottery allocations or more stringent eligibility requirements could harm the operation of global companies, such as those represented in the UK automotive sector, where knowledge and skills transfer is essential in contributing to low carbon growth, and could diminish the attractiveness of the UK as a place to do business. read more

first_imgAn easily maneuverable, self-contained, heavy-duty lifting system which can be used in even the tightest locations and over rough terrain has been released throughout South-East Asia by Enerpac, The Enerpac POW’R-RISER® lifting jack combines a high capacity (54-181 t) cylinder and an electric or air-powered hydraulic pump unit integrated into a mobile cart. Enerpac POW’R-RISER has the speed, power and versatility for a wide variety of on-site site applications, including servicing tires, tracks and other maintenance functions on heavy equipment, lifting and positioning of large constructed elements and many other applications that require heavy lifting equipment in remote locations.Key features include:• Can be rolled into position for easy placement• No exposed hoses or fittings to damage• Narrow width for hard-to-reach areas• Wide selection of capacities, strokes and jack heights for a variety of applications• Electric motor fully enclosed to withstand elements.• 54, 90, 136 and 181 ton capacities with pneumatic or electric pumps for the toughest jobs• SUP-R-STACKTM extension system allows lifting at all heights without blocking.For safe mechanical cribbing of a lifted load, accessory locking u-rings can be placed around an extended piston and come in four lengths for each POW’R-RISER capacity. They are available individually or in sets. Locking u-rings are accommodated by storage racks integral to the POW’R-RISER.POW’R-RISER provides safe, efficient, mobile lifting and load-holding for the toughest applications and is backed by Enerpac’s extensive product support. This support includes national and worldwide networks of local distributors and authorised service centers as well as regional customer and technical service centers.Enerpac is long established as a major supplier of high-pressure (700 bar) hydraulic equipment, having service backup across South-East Asia and a strong distribution network. Its ranges of 700 Bar (10,000 psi) precision hydraulic cylinders, tools and safety equipment is complemented by professional bolting technology being introduced by Enerpac to address the needs of major areas of industry, including mining and energy, infrastructure construction, manufacturing, pipelines, mobile machinery, tracked and heavy vehicles, cranage and fixed plant. www.enerpac.comlast_img read more

first_imgRevealing the costs of the trip in a written Dáil PQ to Deputy Alan Kelly, Ross confirmed that his four-night stay at the four-star Excelsior hotel in Rio cost €1,893.A spokesman for the Department of Tourism and Sport said the €1,893 spend is the cost of the six-night trip that Minister Ross was booked in for but he returned after four nights. The lobby at the Excelsior hotel Source: Windsor HotelsIn addition, Ross’s return flights to Rio cost €7,098, which included a charge incurred for rescheduling of flights back early.He added that there is a credit note of €2,893 from Air France resulting in the net cost of the flights totalling €4,205.Ross also confirmed that the hotel costs for his junior colleague, Patrick O’Donovan in Rio cost €1,577 with his flight costs totalling €4,526.The tax-payer had to spend an additional €6,299 between flights costing €5,726 and hotel costs of €573 for Minister Donovan’s four night stay in Rio for the Paralympics in September.The figures also show that the taxpayer spent an additional €1,532 for Ross to travel to Chicago for the historic win by the Irish rugby team over the All-Blacks in November.In addition, €784 was spent on a flight for Ross to see Ireland beaten by Belgium during Euro 2016 in Bordeaux, while the flight costs of sending O’Donovan to see the Italy game in Lyon cost €654.The government jet flew O’Donovan and others over to see Ireland’s opener against Sweden in Paris.More:The tribunal is dead, long live the tribunal: Ireland’s messy love affair with ‘the truth’Read: ‘She kept her head. She was going to take that medal home if it killed her’ Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Shell shock here in Rio— Shane Ross (@Shane_RossTD) August 17, 2016 Ross watching Annalise Murphy sailing in Rio Image: Morgan Treacy/INPHO Friday 17 Feb 2017, 6:19 PM Short URL By Gordon Deegan 65 Comments It cost over €12,000 to send Shane Ross to deal with Rio ticket controversy Ross admitted on his return that Pat Hickey ‘ate him for breakfast’ 19,556 Views Feb 17th 2017, 6:19 PM Image: Morgan Treacy/INPHO Source: Shane Ross/Twitter Share Tweet Email1 Ross watching Annalise Murphy sailing in Rio THE DRAMA-FILLED trip by the Minister for Tourism and Sport Shane Ross and his Junior Minister to Rio de Janeiro for the 2016 Olympics cost the taxpayer €12,201.In total, the State has paid €21,470 to fly Minister Ross and his junior minister Patrick O’Donovan to international sporting events since last June.In August 2016, Minister Ross flew out to Rio to meet with then-Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) chief Pat Hickey following the arrest of THG employee Kevin Mallon in the Olympic ticketing controversy.Ross admitted on his return that Hickey ‘ate him for breakfast’ at their initial meeting where the Minister admitted to getting little information as to what was going on.The Independent Alliance TD arrived in Rio on 14 August and three days later, Minister Ross famously tweeted ‘Shell shock here in Rio’ following the shock arrest of Hickey. Ross then cut his trip short to Rio to deal with the mounting controversy back in Dublin.last_img read more