Murdoch will attend the Commons committee meet to explain his position on the phone-hacking case. Bowing to pressure from British lawmakers and others, father-son duo Rupert and James Murdoch, on Thursday, decided to attend the key meeting of a House of Commons committee next week to explain their position on the phone-hacking case.Earlier in the day, the Murdochs, who are US citizens, had informed the Culture, Media and Sport Committee chairman, John Whittingdale, that they would not be able to attend it, following which a summons was served on them.Rebekah Brooks, chief executive of News International and a British citizen, had agreed to appear before the committee that will be telecast live to a large audience.After the summons were served on the Murdochs, a spokesman of News Corporation said: “We are in the process of writing to the select committee with the intention that Mr James Murdoch and Mr Rupert Murdoch will attend next Tuesday’s meeting.”Rupert Murdoch had earlier announced that he would depose before the judge-led inquiry announced by Prime Minister David Cameron on Wednesday.Before agreeing to attend the committee meeting, Rupert Murdoch wrote to Whttingdale: “Unfortunately, I am not available to attend the session you have planned next Tuesday. However, I am fully prepared to give evidence to the forthcoming judge-led public inquiry and I will be taking steps to notify those conducting the inquiry of my willingness to do so.”However, after the House of Commons summons were served, there has been a change of stand.advertisement- With PTI inputs
“We hung around,” Knicks coach David Fizdale said. “That’s kind of what we do. We’re pests. But when we miss open shots and they’re knocking every single one of them down, that’s how the game broke open.”TIP-INSKnicks: The Knicks were without Mitchell Robinson (sprained left ankle) and Allonzo Trier (strained left hamstring). … Damyean Dotson had 14 points off the bench after missing the last two games with a sore shoulder.76ers: Some of the loudest cheers came before the game when Hall of Famer Julius Erving rang the ceremonial bell. . The Sixers had their best shooting first half of the season (58.7 percent).MR. 10,000When asked about becoming the 47th active NBA player to score 10,000 points, Redick was self-deprecating before pausing to appreciate his longevity.“If you had told me 10 years ago as a third-year guy struggling to get into the rotation that I would score 10,000 points, I would think you were crazy,” he said. “It’s a cool thing for me. I didn’t realize I was that close.”EASY TRIPLE-DOUBLESJust because Simmons had his fourth triple-double of the season — and the 16th of his career —doesn’t mean he was happy with his performance.“Some guys don’t ever get (triple-doubles) in their career,” he said. “I’m fortunate to have a playing style where it’s pretty easy.” Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting TIMMY TIMEFizdale said Hardaway, the team’s top scorer who missed New York’s last game, has been dealing with plantar fasciitis but added that he has no thoughts of shutting him down.“Only a couple of us knew it was really bothering him,” the Knicks coach said. “I think just one game of rest really helped him. He came back and felt like himself.”UP NEXTKnicks: Host Atlanta on Friday night.76ers: Host Toronto on Saturday night.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next MOST READ SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss TS Kammuri to enter PAR possibly a day after SEA Games opening LATEST STORIES SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion Simmons finished with 13 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists, but said his numbers don’t tell the whole story.“I was just frustrated,” Simmons said. “I want to play well and perform for the team. I want to make sure we win every game we play. I think the second half was a different kind of Ben.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine football chiefJimmy Butler added 20 points and rookie Landry Shamet had a career-high 17 off the bench for the Sixers (21-12), who shot 53.4 percent from the field and 50 percent from 3-point range.Philadelphia had lost three of four, including a lopsided defeat in San Antonio on Monday. Houston Rockets set NBA record with 26 triples in 136-118 win Lacson: 2019 budget delay due to P75-B House ‘insertion’ “For most of the game, our offense was humming,” said JJ Redick, who finished with 14 points, surpassing the 10,000-point milestone for his career. “I thought Ben was great in terms of being on the attack. They really had no answer for Jo (Embiid). And the biggest thing was the second half, we were pretty good defensively.”Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 27 points and Kevin Knox had 21 for the Knicks (9-24), who have lost three straight and eight of their last nine. Emmanuel Mudiay, averaging 20 points per game in his previous nine contests, was held to 11 points on 3-of-12 shooting.“It’s tough when you have Ben Simmons, who’s really fast, who’s running downhill the whole game,” Knox said. “You’ve got Embiid, who’s hard to really guard in the post. … They’ve just got a lot of weapons.”The Sixers were clicking offensively from the start, scoring 38 points on nearly 70 percent shooting in the first quarter, capped by a four-point play from Furkan Korkmaz. They led by as many as 14 in the first half and took a 69-61 lead into halftime, though the Knicks closed the half on a highlight-reel alley oop from Hardaway to Knox.After the Knicks cut Philly’s lead to three early in the third, Embiid and Simmons had back-to-back one handed slams to get the home crowd going and help the Sixers pull away.ADVERTISEMENT Hotel management clarifies SEAG footballers’ kikiam breakfast issue LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño Is Luis Manzano planning to propose to Jessy Mendiola? Philadelphia 76ers’ Ben Simmons (25) hangs on the rim after a dunk as New York Knicks’ Noah Vonleh (32) looks on during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2018, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)PHILADELPHIA — Ben Simmons was angry at himself by halftime. The New York Knicks paid for it after the break.Joel Embiid had 24 points and 10 rebounds, Simmons got his second triple-double in his last three games, and the Philadelphia 76ers snapped out of a funk to beat the Knicks 131-109 on Wednesday night.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View comments
Vadodara, Apr 2 (PTI) A website on the Dhirubhai Ambani Memorial House at Chorwad in Gujarat was launched today by BJP President Amit Shah in New Delhi.The website – www.dhirubhaiambanimemorialchorwad.com – was launched in the presence of Parimal Nathwani, Independent Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha) and Group President of Reliance Industries Limited, a press release from RIL said.”The website contains the pictures of the ancestral house of Dhirubhai Ambani, chronology of Dhirubhai Ambanis life, historical information about Chorwad, development works carried out by RIL in Chorwad among other details,” it added.According to the release, the website will provide much needed information about famous places around Chorwad to the visitors.Late Dhirubhai Ambani was the founder of Reliance Industries. PTI COR NRB MKJ
IN the local derby between Omonia and Apoel, the defending champions won 4-1 after taking the lead in the 18th minute through a penalty with Giorgos Efrem, with Omonia’s Carlitos sent off in the same incident having upended Demarco.Two more goals followed from Pieros Soteriou, in the 34th and 38th minutes. Omonia then managed to pull one back through Renato Margaca early in the second half, but Franco Vinicius wrapped up the goals for the day with Apoel’s fourth in the 67th minute, making sure of the three points for manager Thomas Christiansen, despite hopes that Omonia would once again beat their Nicosia rivals, as has been tradition in recent years.There was also an upset in the game between bottom placed Anagenysi Dherynias and leaders AEK, as it ended in a goalless draw.Source: Cyprus-mail.comTweetPinShare0 Shares
The Tata Harrier has been close on the heels of becoming one of the most awaited cars this year since its Indian debut at the 2018 Auto Expo held in February 2018. Now a new leaked image shows the SUV from the rear. Additionally, with the impending launch of the Harrier, Tata is also working on increasing its sales network strength and is planning to give its customers a more detailed and richer experience with a premium makeover of their dealerships. The leaked image released online of the Harrier SUV shows the design very similar to the concept H5X SUV which made its debut at the 2018 Auto Expo. The Harrier retains the high-set LED headlamps, and the humanity line which connects the headlamps and the grille.The Harrier will be built on the Omega platform. The L550 platform is a derivative of the L550 platform from the stables of Jaguar Land Rover for the Discovery Sport. Interior wise, the Harrier will feature front and rear AC vents, sunroof, touchscreen infotainment system, steering mounted controls, electric seats with memory function, parking sensors, and reverse camera.Tata designers have pointed to the fact that the final production model will be very much similar to the concept model. Other styling similarities include wheel arches, front and rear armrests, slim headlamps which are in accordance with their Impact Design 2.0 language. The Harrier is expected to be powered by a Kryotec 2.0-litre 4-cylinder, turbo-diesel engine with a 4-wheel drive system which will be developed by Tata. The powertrain will be mated to a 6-speed manual or a Hyundai sourced 6-speed automatic. The engine will get multiple drive modes which are already available on Tata’s Revotron and Revotorq line of engines.advertisementExpect the pricing to be placed around Rs 15.50-20 lakh.
Transfers Bartra leaves Borussia Dortmund to join Real Betis Joe Wright 07:12 1/31/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(1) Bongarts Transfers Real Betis Borussia Dortmund Primera División Bundesliga The Spanish defender leaves the Bundesliga after spending a season and a half with the Signal Iduna Park club Real Betis have signed defender Marc Bartra from Borussia Dortmund for an undisclosed fee.Dortmund confirmed on Tuesday that the Spain international centre-back had returned to La Liga to join Betis, where he has signed a five-and-a-half-year deal.The transfer comes after a difficult few months in Germany for the former Barcelona man, who was injured in the bomb attack on the Dortmund team bus last April. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player “I have no words to describe the moments and feelings that I have lived in only a year and a half,” he said in a statement released via his Twitter account.”It has happened very fast but at the same time I feel like I had been [here] many more years. Everything has been very powerful and I have experienced amazing feelings, inside and offside [sic] the field.”Thanks to my colleagues who welcomed me and gave me their love from the first to the last day. Thanks to the trainers who trust on [sic] me.”Above all, millions of thanks to you, supporters. I would never have imagined feeling so much love… you are an example to everyone.”I gave everything in every moment and we were able to achieve and celebrate a trophy together [last season’s DFB-Pokal].”Bartra suffered damage to his wrist when Dortmund’s bus was hit by a roadside bomb ahead of a Champions League quarter-final clash with Monaco.The 27-year-old testified in court this week, at the trial of the man suspected of carrying out the attack.In light of that incident and the fact Bartra has only made nine starts in the Bundesliga this season, Dortmund suggested they agreed to a substantially reduced transfer fee to allow the player to return home.Thank you BVB family! I have no words to describe the moments and feelings that I have lived in Dortmund with you and I will never forget it. Danke für alles Borussen! pic.twitter.com/TCCMEA8zDT— Marc Bartra (@MarcBartra) January 30, 2018″Marc Bartra is a wonderful person and a great footballer who immediately won our hearts,” said CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke, via the club’s website.”Unfortunately, terrible things have happened to him in Dortmund due to the cowardly attack. Against this backdrop, we respect Marc’s desire to return to his homeland.”Because we feel committed to Marc in a special way, we have made a significant concession in the transfer negotiations. “Borussia Dortmund wishes Marc and his family all the best for the future.”
The Compulsory Acquisition (Shares in Petrojam Limited) Act, 2019 was piloted by Prime Minister, the Most. Hon. Andrew Holness. In his address, the Prime Minister said the decision to move in the current direction was not taken lightly, noting that Petrojam and Jamaica have been left at risk due to years of inaction. Legislation to retake ownership of the 49 per cent shares in Petrojam held by the Venezuelan State-owned oil and natural gas company, Petróleos de Venezuela (PDV) Caribe, was passed in the House of Representatives on February 19. Story Highlights Legislation to retake ownership of the 49 per cent shares in Petrojam held by the Venezuelan State-owned oil and natural gas company, Petróleos de Venezuela (PDV) Caribe, was passed in the House of Representatives on February 19.The Compulsory Acquisition (Shares in Petrojam Limited) Act, 2019 was piloted by Prime Minister, the Most. Hon. Andrew Holness.In his address, the Prime Minister said the decision to move in the current direction was not taken lightly, noting that Petrojam and Jamaica have been left at risk due to years of inaction.“Technical assessments have found that refining operations will be negatively impacted by 2020 if Petrojam is not in a position to execute Phase 1 of the refinery upgrade (Vacuum Distillation Unit Project),” Mr. Holness noted.“This is primarily due to the imminent international obligations as stipulated by the International Maritime Organization regulations regarding sulphur, which will become effective on January 1, 2020, and the transition by the Jamaica Public Service Company Limited (JPS) to Liquefied Natural Gas for its 190 MW power plant by June 2019, thereby reducing the need for heavy fuel oil produced by Petrojam,” he added.Mr. Holness argued that without an upgrade, Petrojam would be unable to further process heavy fuel oil (HFO) into high-value products, and having lost a major customer in JPS, Petrojam would become unprofitable.The Prime Minister also cited the United States Executive Order 13808 dated August 24, 2017, which essentially prohibits United States persons from entering into specified transactions with the Government of Venezuela and any political division, agency or instrumentality thereof, including PDVSA.“While Petrojam itself was not identified as a ‘sanctioned entity’ under the Executive Order, the fact is that its banks and correspondent banks, which facilitate basic transactions with suppliers and service providers, are considered US persons, and were, therefore, at risk or at perceived risk of high fines for breaching such sanctions, and accordingly, they were hesitant to continue providing such services which were fundamental to the most basic operations of Petrojam,” he said.The Prime Minister explained that the Government has no choice but to take action in the interest of preserving the energy security of Jamaica.“It is important to understand that the Government of Jamaica does not see this as a political issue… . I want to make it absolutely clear that the decision to acquire the shares is an economic decision,” Mr. Holness emphasised.The Prime Minister also highlighted that payments to and from Petrojam have been subjected to increased due diligence by the primary suppliers of lines of credit, as well as intermediary banks, and the disruption or delay of transactions for Petrojam Limited has become a source of unease for Petrojam’s suppliers.“An even more serious concern is the overseas suppliers of goods and services to Petrojam. Owing to Petrojam’s continued association with Venezuelan entities, some suppliers have advised Petrojam that they are no longer willing to take the risk of supplying to Petrojam, and others have expressed grave concerns,” Mr. Holness said.The need for an upgrade of the refinery was recognised from as early as the 1990s, and Petrojam and the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica (PCJ) have undertaken several studies on the refinery upgrade.“The challenge has always been the cost of the upgrade, which can run into hundreds of millions of dollars, with estimates as much as more than a billion dollars, depending on the extent of the upgrade,” Mr. Holness said.In February 2005, a Letter of Intent was agreed between the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, acting through its Ministry of Energy and Petroleum, and the Government of Jamaica, acting through the Ministry of Commerce, Science and Technology, confirming, in principle, that they would pursue feasible options for the improvement of the refinery.Additionally, in June 2005, further to the Letter of Intent, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the same parties, with a view to establishing a Joint Venture.On August 14, 2006, a Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) was signed between the PCJ, Petrojam and PDV Caribe SA (PDV Caribe) to cooperate in the ownership and management of Petrojam and to undertake the refinery upgrade, which was recognised as critically important for the energy security of Jamaica.“It stated that PDV Caribe SA and the PCJ agreed to embark on a Refinery Upgrade Project (RUP) through the medium of Petrojam. The JVA defines the RUP as a project that will be carried out to expand the Kingston Refinery Processing capacity from 36 kilo barrels per day to 50 kilo barrels per day,” Mr. Holness said.The first phase of the RUP will include a revamp of the Atmospheric Distillation Unit, and the installation of new units, including a Vacuum Distillation Unit, Naphtha Reformer. Phase II will be evaluated aiming at incorporating a Deep Conversion Unit in the Refinery.“The JVA also set out that in order to facilitate its purpose, the parties would enter into a Share Sale and Purchase Agreement pursuant to which PCJ would sell, and PDV Caribe would purchase, shares in Petrojam. The Share Sale and Purchase Agreement was signed in August 2007, selling 49 per cent of the shares in Petrojam for the sum of US$63.7 million, based on valuations by internationally recognised consultants with expertise in valuing assets in the energy sector,” the Prime Minister explained.Mr. Holness pointed out that despite discussions and negotiations, the RUP has not been achieved.
Land degradation and desertification are some of the greatest environmental challenges for the world in light of climate change, rapidly growing population and increasing demand for food, fibre and biomass energy. As the latest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says, land “provides the principal basis for human livelihoods and well-being, including the supply of food, freshwater and multiple other ecosystem services, as well as biodiversity.” Also Read – A special kind of bondBut the problem of land degradation and desertification is acute in Asia and Africa. Under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 15.3, a land degradation-neutral world by 2030 would not only depend upon the success of Africa and Asia to combat it, but the overall success would be critically determined by the success in achieving them in the two continents. UN agencies and the scientific community have been in a continuous discourse on identifying and generating empirical and scientific methods for monitoring, assessing and reporting the progress on land degradation and desertification. Also Read – Insider threat managementIn Asian countries, the degraded areas mainly include the deserts of China mainland, India, Iran, Mongolia and Pakistan; the sand dunes of Central Asia; the steeply eroded mountain slopes of Nepal; and the deforested and overgrazed high-lands of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic. Asia holds almost 60 per cent of the world’s population. Of this, nearly 70 per cent live in rural areas and depend directly on land and land-based ecosystem services. As a result, Asia is most severely affected by land degradation, desertification and drought in terms of the number of people. In Africa too, the situation is alarming. Agenda 2063 – Africa’s blueprint for transforming the continent into a global powerhouse – talks about creating a prosperous Africa based on inclusive growth and sustainable development. The continent meeting the SDGs is in line with the aspirations of Agenda 2063. At the sixth special session of the African Ministerial Conference on Environment held in April 2016, the ministers decided to use outcomes of the Economics of Land Degradation (ELD) Initiative by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The 2015 ELD study provides a vehicle for the generation of policy-relevant information that links the biophysical aspects of land degradation with the economic drivers of change and subsequent implications for society. Africa is particularly vulnerable to soil erosion and is the most severely affected continent. Two-thirds of productive land has degraded, as per a UNCCD estimate. To achieve SDGs and to realise the aspirations of Agenda 2063, Africa needs to sustainably manage its natural resources. Desertification has affected 45 per cent of Africa’s land area, of which 55 per cent is at high or very high risk of further degradation. The socioeconomic consequences of land degradation are food insecurity, poverty, social tension, reduced availability of clean water and increased vulnerability of affected areas. Soil, especially topsoil, is an important natural resource base in the production of food, fibre and biomass energy. It takes 200 to 1,000 years to form 2.5 cm of topsoil under cropland conditions. Land degradation is causing loss of topsoil and the nutrients it contains, which, in turn, leads to reduction in crop production. Nutrient depletion from 105 million ha of cereal crop-lands in 42 African countries is causing a loss of 280 million tonnes of cereal crops a year. The economic value of this was estimated at US$ 127 billion per year by the ELD study. It shows that benefits of action against land degradation through sustainable land management are seven times higher than the costs associated in the next 15 years. Economic appraisal (cost of restoration v benefit of restoration) in the ELD Asia study indicates that if all Asian countries invest and develop sustainable land management technologies on its 487 million ha of agricultural land in the next 13 years, the total cost would be $ 1,214 billion, that is, $ 2,494 per ha. The present value of the flows of total benefits from investing in sustainable land management is estimated at $ 4,216 billion, or $ 8,663 per ha. This means Asia could create a net present value of $3,008 billion, equal to $6,169 per ha with a benefit-cost ratio of 3:5. China mainland, Saudi Arabia, Uzbekistan, Iran, Myanmar, Indonesia and Japan together account for 88.34 per cent of the net present value, with the ratio ranging from 3:02 in Japan to 6:75 in China mainland. The study also indicates that investing in sustainable land management technologies and becoming agricultural land degradation-neutral by 2030 would help countries reduce the poverty gap to zero, increase the total per capita domestic food crop production to 858 kg across Asia, and result in economic growth and expansion in the agricultural sector. The drop in annual production in Asia due to topsoil loss-induced loss of NPK (nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium) amounts to 16.7 million tonnes of crops with a total value of $ 9.9 billion at the weighted average price of crops produced in the region. In other words, preventing topsoil loss-induced NPK loss would increase productivity by 0.68 per cent per year. Annual production loss due to topsoil loss-induced NPK loss is 1.31 billion tonnes or close to 53 per cent of the annual total crop production in the region. The corresponding value of this annual loss at the weighted average crop prices amounts to close to $ 732.7 billion. Thus, Asian countries need to act against topsoil loss-induced soil nutrient depletion that is aggravating agricultural land degradation. This may require investment in sustainable land management technologies on agricultural lands. For both Africa and Asia to attract investment in sustainable land management practices, the study suggests that sustainable land management is the key to control land degradation and to achieve land degradation neutrality. The benefits of action through sustainable land management to control land degradation outweighs the cost of action in all studied African countries. The net present value of action is non-negative against changes in the discount rate, prices of cereals and planning horizon. The cost of inaction measured in terms of cereal crops loss due to soil erosion-induced nutrient depletion over 15 years (2016-30) is equivalent to 12.3 per cent of the GDP of the 42 countries, as studied. Investment in sustainable land management practices will only be equivalent to 1.15 per cent of the GDP of 42 countries in Africa. The scientific data and economic analysis indicate that in addition to achieving SDG 15.3, investment in sustainable land management on agricultural land would enable most Asian countries to achieve other related SDGs as well. Moreover, results of this study have an important contribution in providing the methods, indicators, and results for measuring and reporting SDG target 15.3 and for integrating particularly the value of soil as a natural capital in the nations’ social accounting matrices. (The author is Chief Environmental Economist, United Nations Environment Programme. The views expressed are strictly personal)
Kolkata: The committee headed by an emeritus professor of Jadavpur University’s civil engineering department carried out health study of 11 buildings at Bowbazar on Tuesday, that have suffered damages due to the tunnel boring work for the East-West Metro project.A total of approximately 74 buildings have suffered damages or developed cracks and the residents of all these buildings have already been evacuated and shifted to various hotels by Kolkata Metro Railway Corporation Ltd (KMRCL), the executing agency of the E-W project. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari Puja”We have kicked off the process of identifying the buildings that can be restored and the ones that need to be demolished. We have already done it for 11 houses today (Tuesday),” said Nitin Som, emeritus professor of Jadavpur University’s civil engineering department, who heads the committee of KMRCL constituted for health study of the buildings. It may be mentioned that the committee will categorise the buildings as per their extent of damage. In the first phase, the buildings that can be repaired through minor work will be identified, while the second phase Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwaywill cover those buildings that have suffered damages to an extent of restoration. Lastly, the third phase will cover those buildings with heavy damages. “The third phase is a complicated process as these buildings need detailed investigation before taking a decision on whether they can be restored through heavy repair or have to be demolished,” a KMRCL official said. More than 600 residents living at Durga Pithuri Lane, Syakra Para Lane and Gour De Lane have been evacuated for safety reasons and have been lodged at hotels in different places of Central Kolkata. KMRCL has already identified five buildings at Durga Pithuri Lane that should be pulled down and work for the same has already started on Monday. Two buildings have already been pulled down. The engineers on Tuesday were found taking measures to strengthen a couple of buildings at Syakra Para Lane, to ensure that they do not collapse due to demolition work or clearing of debris in and around these buildings. It may be mentioned that a machine that was boring an East- West Metro tunnel in Bowbazar, had hit a giant aquifer on August 31. Water from the aquifer flooded the tunnel, leading to widespread subsidence.
TORONTO – The Ontario Liberals promised new legislation on Saturday that would reduce the province’s debt, saying they were presenting the only realistic financial plan between the three major parties.Liberal Leader Kathleen Wynne said that in years when the province beats its own fiscal projections — something she noted her party has done for the past four years — the proposed legislation would require 100 per cent of unspent money to go towards reducing debt.The governing Liberals made the promise as they launched their full campaign platform, much of which was similar to the government’s latest budget released in March.The promise to use unspent money to reduce debt comes amid rhetoric from Wynne that writes off the New Democrats and Progressive Conservatives as having economically unfeasible plans for government. She took particular aim at the NDP, which both the Liberals and Tories have labelled as radical.“We’ve got some really good momentum in terms of our economy, so we do not need … to have policies from a government in Ontario that are going to slow that down,” Wynne said Saturday during a campaign event in Toronto. “That’s what I’m worried about when I look at what the NDP are suggesting.”The Liberals have also taken their fair share of criticism, however, particularly over the ballooning provincial debt during their time in power.In March, Ontario’s publicly held debt for 2018-19 was projected at $337.4 billion — up from $285.4 billion in 2014-15.The Liberals promised for years, after a decade of deficits, to return Ontario to the black by 2017-18. They did — presenting a balanced budget that year — but promptly plunged the province back into deficit in this year’s budget with a host of new spending promises. They now project a $6.7-billion deficit in 2018-2019, with no plan to return to balance until 2024-2025.Wynne pushed back against her opponents’ critiques on Saturday, noting that Progressive Conservative Leader Doug Ford has yet to release a detailed fiscal plan, and alleging that NDP leader Andrea Horwath’s is full of errors.The Liberals, who are running far back in third place according to multiple polls, have also accused the Tories of using consumer-friendly promises to distract voters from their lack of a platform.In a move aimed at beer drinkers, Ford promised this weekend he would set the minimum price of a bottle at $1 plus deposit if elected.The Liberals said the policy is akin to the Tories proposal to sell beer at corner stores, which the party introduced a day after allegations were raised about it potentially benefiting from stolen toll-highway data.“Ford’s Conservative team is promising cheap beer instead of explaining his expensive promises,” read a Saturday release from the Liberals.“At this rate, he’ll show up for Sunday’s leaders’ debate with a carton of smokes and a round of shooters for voters.”In response to that attack, Progressive Conservative spokeswoman Melissa Lantsman said Ford trusts consumers and retailers to make responsible choices about the sale of alcohol.“It’s time for the government to stop gouging the people,” Lantsman said in an email. “Change is coming and help is on the way.”Meantime, an association that promotes the interests of licensed brewers said it was committed to working with the next government of Ontario to sell their products in a socially responsible way.“In terms of price, almost half (44 per cent) of the price of beer in Ontario is tax,” read a statement from Canada’s National Brewers. “It’s simple — the best way to lower beer prices is to lower the tax on beer.”The three major parties are now preparing for the final leaders’ debate on Sunday, and have less than two weeks to go until voting day on June 7.Wynne acknowledged her party is clearly in third place at this point in the campaign, but said there’s still time to bounce back.“It’s a big hill. I know we have a big hill,” Wynne said. “But we’ve been in tough places before, so what I’m going to do is fight our way back.”
WASHINGTON — Two House committees have subpoenaed Deutsche Bank and several other financial institutions as part of investigations into President Donald Trump’s finances.The House financial services and intelligence panels issued the subpoenas Monday, according to Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff. He says the subpoenas are part of an investigation “into allegations of potential foreign influence on the U.S. political process.”The California Democrat did not name the other financial institutions.House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters, also a California Democrat, says “the potential use of the U.S. financial system for illicit purposes is a very serious concern.” She says her committee is looking into those matters, including whether they pertain to Trump.The investigations are among several House Democrats are conducting into aspects of the president’s personal and political life.Mary Clare Jalonick, The Associated Press
United National Party (UNP) leader Ranil Wickremesinghe says China gave him an assurance it will not interfere in the political crisis taking place in Sri Lanka.There have been claims made that China was funding Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa to buy the support of some UNP members. Asked about this at a media conference today, Wickremesinghe refused to comment on the allegation. However he said the Chinese Ambassador to Sri Lanka informed him that China will not interfere. The Chinese Ambassador to Sri Lanka Cheng Xueyuan met Wickremesinghe after he was removed as Prime Minister.The Chinese Ambassador also met newly appointed Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa. The former Prime Minister said that most foreign diplomats feel Parliament must be convened to resolve the issue. Wickremesinghe also denied reports that he has called for the UN Peacekeeping force to be deployed to Sri Lanka.He said that a forged letter was circulating to that effect but he insisted he had not made such a request. (Colombo Gazette) Wickremesinghe said that at the meeting with him, the Chinese Ambassador sought details on the political crisis.He said the Chinese envoy had assured that China will not interfere in the domestic affairs of Sri Lanka.Wickremesinghe had over the weekend also briefed foreign diplomats in Sri Lanka on the crisis.
“Globalization, coupled with demographic dynamics, is resulting in increased exclusion and social dislocation in some situations,” warns the report, which will be presented to government ministers attending the next session of the Commission later this month in Bangkok”In the ESCAP region, these are reflected in deepening poverty in its different forms, growing social and income inequalities, and eruptions of social and ethnic tensions,” according to the report, entitled, “Sustainable Social Development in a Period of Rapid Globalization: Challenges, Opportunities and Policy Options.”Among the “social risks and vulnerabilities” cited by the report are changing conditions in local labour markets, an aging population, and a population increasingly on the move. Other factors resulting in social dislocation include social and civil conflict, the prevalence of people with disability, the HIV/AIDS epidemic and fall-out from the 1997 financial crisis.The study finds that some people are being excluded “partially or wholly from sustainable livelihood, decent employment, minimum earnings and consumption, physical and human capital development.”On a positive note, the report states “globalization and the ‘opening up’ of societies have increased opportunities for people’s participation and contributed to the strengthening of civil society.”Globalization has also meant that people are beginning to network as never before, creating new associations and interest groups in fields such as environmental protection, women’s empowerment and human rights.International links are also forged between some trade unions and farmers’ organizations as they collaborate to meet the challenges of possible downsides of the globalization of production, the report says.
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the Security Council have strongly condemned the “heinous” terrorist attack that took place today in Hermel, Lebanon, a town near the country’s northern border, which killed at least four people and wounded dozens of others.“The members of the Security Council underline the need to bring the perpetrators to justice,” the 15-member body said in a press statement issued in New York shortly after the incident, which, according to news reports, was a suicide bomb attack carried out a gas station in the town, which is near Lebanon’s northern border with Syria. In the statement, the Council extended its condolences to the families of the victims and expressed sympathy to all those injured in the heinous act and to the people and Government of Lebanon. Reaffirming that terrorism constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security, Council members also reaffirmed the need to combat the scourge in all its forms and manifestations “by all means, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and all obligations under international law. Recalling its Presidential Statement of July 10, 2013, the members of the Council appealed to all Lebanese people to preserve national unity in the face of attempts to undermine the country’s stability and stressed “the importance for all Lebanese parties to respect Lebanon’s policy of disassociation and to refrain from any involvement in the Syrian crisis, consistent with their commitment in the Baabda Declaration.” A statement issued by Mr. Ban’s spokesperson in New York echoed the Council’s condemnation as well as the 15-member body’s call for the “perpetrators of this crime and all other acts of terrorism” to be brought to justice.“The recent escalation in acts of terrorism and violence in Lebanon is of grave concern,” said the statement, adding that Mr. Ban reiterates his call on all Lebanese to rally behind their State institutions, including the army and security forces, as the best means to confront such unacceptable and indiscriminate actions and to safeguard their country’s security and stability. Today’s incident was the latest in renewed spate of deadly attacks in Lebanon, the most recent being an explosion in a southern Beirut suburb that killed four people and wounded a number of others on 21 January. That attack was condemned by the Security Council, the Secretary-General and the UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon, Derek Plumbly. The car bombing, which was the second to strike the suburb of Haret Hreik in January, was “a further deeply disturbing act of indiscriminate terror,” the Secretary-General said in a statement on that incident issued by his spokesman.
At today’s SMMT 2012 International Automotive Summit at Canary Wharf, London, Ian Robertson, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, Sales and Marketing BMW, announced that the new generation of high-tech, 3-cylinder petrol engines for the future BMW i8 plug-in hybrid sports car will be built exclusively at the BMW engine plant at Hams Hall, near Birmingham.Ian Robertson said, “Our Hams Hall engine plant, which last week celebrated production of the three-millionth engine since the plant was opened in February 2001, will make an important contribution to the future success of the new BMW i brand and the company’s strategy for achieving sustainable mobility. The new 3-cylinder petrol engines will enable our future BMW i8 plug-in hybrid sports car to set new standards for dynamic performance in combination with industry-leading fuel-efficiency and low carbon emission levels.”Paul Everitt, SMMT Chief Executive said, “The announcement that BMW will build its new i8 sports car engine in the UK at its Hams Hall plant is great news for the UK and demonstrates that international companies continue to see the UK as a competitive manufacturing base and key market for new products.”Business Secretary Vince Cable said, “BMW’s decision to produce engines for their i8 plug-in hybrid sports car at Hams Hall is more good news for the UK automotive sector and underlines its growing competitive strength. It is yet another indication that international companies see the UK as one of the best places to develop and manufacture low emission vehicle technologies.”During his keynote address at the SMMT Summit to leaders from across the automotive industry, Ian Robertson said that the BMW Group, as a major UK investor, employer, manufacturer and exporter, welcomed continuing joint government-industry initiatives to re-balance the UK economy, strengthen the manufacturing sector and improve the standards of training and skills that underpin the success of the industry. He also emphasised the importance of new, emerging markets around the world for creating export-led economic growth and employment.During his presentation, Robertson also welcomed UK government activities to help stimulate the early market for ultra-low carbon emission vehicles and emphasised the need for continued support in developing the market for electric vehicles which will play an important role in further reducing CO2 emissions and achieving increasingly ambitious carbon reduction targets in the years ahead.Despite the current economic difficulties in many countries in Europe, including the UK, Robertson declared his confidence and optimism in the positive development of the automotive sector and its ability to play an increasingly important role as a key sector of the UK economy.Over three million engines have been produced to date at the Hams Hall engine plant for a wide range of BMW and MINI vehicles. This milestone follows record production in 2011 and confirmation that facilities are to be upgraded to enable production of the new generation of engines. The UK-built engines are supplied in sequence to production plants in Germany, Austria and Oxford and currently power the BMW X1, BMW 1 Series, the new BMW 3 Series as well as all MINI petrol engines.The BMW i8 Concept is a contemporary sports car boasting an innovative eDrive plug-in hybrid concept combining an electric drive system with a high performance three cylinder TwinPower Turbo engine producing 349hp/300Nm. Acceleration of 0-62mph in under five seconds combined with the fuel consumption in the European cycle of under approximately 78mpg gives sports car performance with small car fuel consumption. Thanks to its plug-in hybrid drive, most daily journeys can be taken in zero-emission all-electric mode with an electric range of approximately 20 miles. The 2+2 seater provides enough space for four people giving a high level of everyday practicality.Click through the link to see all of the news emerging from today’s 2012 SMMT International Automotive Summit. Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
“We don’t even know if the [previous] owners know his real age, he could have any story.”People who work at the cattery contacted the number on his microchip, but never received a response.Luckily, they have found a home for him if he does not get claimed by the end of the month.Michelle Do Carmo, clinic manager, said: “For older cats we look for a quiet home where they can relax and enjoy his retirement – somewhere a bit more chilled out and quiet”. “Banjo must have used up all of his nine lives by now,” centre manager Beverly Leavy said. “He is such a charming, sweet old man, he is eating well and enjoying life in the cattery.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. An abandoned cat, Banjo, is believed to be Britain’s oldest feline.He was found surviving alone by RSPCA Southall Cattery, who were shocked by how old he appeared to be.They believe he is 27 – which would make him the oldest cat in Britain and 125 in human years.His rescuers don’t know why he was abandoned, as he was microchipped in 1991, but it is remarkable he survived on the streets at such an advanced age. They are now trying to find him a home so he can have a comfortable retirement. She didn’t know why someone would abandon such an elderly cat.”It could be a number of reasons, as everyone has got different backgrounds”, she said.”Most of the time it’s money issues or they’ve got evicted or are moving home.” The cattery has contacted Guinness Book of Records to confirm he is indeed the oldest cat in Britain.Aneel Odhwani, the animal care assistant who has been looking after Banjo, said: “He’s friendly and laid back, very undemanding. He loves his food and he loves being groomed – the ideal cat to rehome,”We’ve had people asking on our Facebook page, ‘How do you know old old he is? Because he looks so young!’
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedHardik Pandya out of World XI T20, Mohammed Shami, Adil Rashid inMay 28, 2018In “Sports”Shami out of Afghanistan Test after failing fitness testJune 11, 2018In “latest news”Will MS Dhoni tour the West Indies? Selectors to meet on July 19July 16, 2019In “latest news” (BBC) Top Indian cricketer Mohammad Shami has been charged with attempt to murder following a complaint by his wife.Mohammad ShamiShami was dropped from a list of contracted players for the national team announced by the Board of Control for Cricket in India on 8 March.Police say the charges against the 27-year-old fast bowler include domestic violence, rape, attempted murder and criminal intimidation.Shami has represented India 87 times in all formats of the game since 2012.The charges against the player carry prison terms of 10 years or more.He has denied his wife Hasin Jahan’s claims, who first accused him of adultery, making public a series of messages that Shami allegedly sent to women during their four-year marriage.“It’s definitely a part of a big conspiracy against me,” said Shami, 27, who has won 30 Test caps.A BCCI supervisory committee said the allegations had put them in a difficult position.“We are in a bit of Catch 22,” Vinod Rai, chairman of the committee, told cricket website ESPNcricinfo.“Ordinarily you would distinguish and say that is a personal issue and the contract is a professional issue.“But someone could easily point out and say this allegation is an unsavoury one and you are still rewarding him.”Ms Jahan also filed a rape complaint against Shami’s elder brother.
We were better to leave well enough alone. If people want to drink, we have terrific pubs that would be happy to have the business.Kilkenny Borough Council voted to relax the restrictions on public consumption of intoxicating liquor on a vote of eight to three earlier this month.There will be certain safeguards introduced and any relaxation of the ban will require the approval of the local authority by a two-thirds majority.Restrictions on locations and times will also be regulated by the council.It is understood that those backing the change hope that it will help in any future bid for the city to host the popular Fleadh. Earlier this year, Derry hosted the event with local authorities granting temporary licences to a small number of designated areas in the city centre.That is not a fair comparison though, according to Cuddihy, who claimed there is “no shortage” of police in Northern Ireland.“I believe in five years we will have frittered away the bye-laws, which the gardaí have said have been effective (they pre-date national laws by some years) in their policing,” he continued.Cuddihy believes that members of the council will come under pressure to relax the rules for any number of the festivals and events that take place in Kilkenny.“I don’t want to be the Temple Bar on the Nore,” he concluded.Read: A pint in the Stag’s Head listed in top 50 ‘must eat experiences’More: Diageo defends Arthur’s Day saying it’s a music festival and celebration of the pubPoll: Are you going to partake in Arthur’s Day this year? LAWS THAT WERE put in place to ban drinking from Kilkenny’s streets and public spaces 11 years ago have been amended to allow a relaxation of the rules under certain circumstances.The move has disappointed the city’s former mayor Paul Cuddihy who led the campaign to have the bye-laws introduced in 2002.“It sounds awfully old-fashioned but we had huge problems with alcohol and we fixed that problem, largely,” the Fine Gael councillor told TheJournal.ie.“It is not entirely fixed but it is a great deal better than it had been. We had people urinating in letter boxes, people drinking slabs of beer in the streets, in parks, school yards and grave yards.”
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram A meeting between Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and Russian President Vladimir Putin – their first in more than two years – presented the Greek leader with a chance to discuss the high cost of natural gas and to reaffirm interest from Russia in the sale of the Hellenic Railways Organization (OSE) and Thessaloniki port.The two men met in Brussels after Samaras addressed a Business Europe conference and Putin had met with European Union officials.The cost of natural gas was a key item on the agenda of talks between Samaras and Putin as the meeting came amid discussions between Russian gas giant Gazprom and Greece’s Public Gas Corporation (DEPA) about the same issue. The Greek government is thought to have ordered DEPA officials to reject any price of more than $400 per 1,000 cubic meters.Sources said that Putin did not make any binding commitments on the matter but indicated that he would examine the issue. In his comments after the meeting, Samaras drove home the point that Greece could not afford to keep paying natural gas prices that are about 30 percent above the European average. “My country is currently coming out of a six-year recession and low energy prices from Russia are crucial to our recovery,” he said.On the issue of OSE, Putin made it known that there is Russian interest and asked whether Athens would be able to package the railways and Thessaloniki port into a single privatization tender. The government, however, will be unable to comply with this request.Samaras extended an invitation to Putin to make an official visit to Greece soon.Meanwhile in Athens leftist SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras lashed out at the imposition of austerity reforms over the past few years, claiming that the troika-imposed measures violated the Greek Constitution. “For three years now, the Constitution and the procedures that it dictates have been violated, on the orders of our lenders,” Tsipras said after talks with Sotiris Rizos, the president of the Council of State, the country’s highest administrative court.Tsipras subsequently met with Eleni Raikou, the capital’s top corruption prosecutor, for a briefing on the progress of the graft probes she is overseeing. “Whoever stole public money must return it,” he said.Source: Kathimerini
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram A 30-year-old Cranbourne West man is due to face Moorabbin Magistrates’ Court on 21 February 2019 for a contest mention hearing regarding two counts of unlawful assault.The man, a former nurse employed by Caulfield hospital was caught on camera abusing a defenseless patient suffering from cerebral palsy and recovering from a car accident.Billy Aivaliotis, 33, after being treated in the Royal Melbourne Hospital immediately after he was struck by a car, was transferred to Caulfield hospital by his family to receive care.The incident was revealed when the Aivaliotis family, concerned about the patient’s weight-loss and signs of bruising hid a camera in a picture frame after their persistent attempts to raise the matter with staff kept kept being ignored.Mr Aivaliotis (pictured), who was born with cerebral palsy.Indeed, on 22 January, the footage from the secret camera revealed a male nurse grabbing Mr Aivaliotis by the throat, before moving him aggressively on to a bed at 8.06am that day. At 8.10am the nurse stood over Mr Aivaliotis attempting to clean him, but forcefully pushed the patient in the neck or face area.The family shared the story with the Herald Sun, which was also later aired on the Current Affair.The male nurse does not work at the hospital anymore and following a thorough investigation, a report in July made 26 recommendations which Alfred health promised to implement by the end of the year.In a statement, the Aivaliotis family said: “To leave a loved on in the care if a hospital and their staff demands total trust and support, which we were committed to. After this devastating realisation, we have absolutely no faith in this broken and failed system of care. We had to take matters into our own hands after zero action from the hospital. Billy cannot voice his feelings. He is incapable of demonstrating his fears and concerns. His family is his voice, and we do everything possible to ensure his safety and well-being.”