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Adan: Messi makes football better

first_imgLionel Messi ‘Messi makes football better’ – Betis keeper Adan marvels at Barcelona talisman Dom Farrell 18:15 1/22/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(9) LionelMessi - cropped Getty Images Lionel Messi Barcelona Real Betis Primera División Antonio Adan might be a former Real Madrid man but that has not stopped him from saluting the genius of a star turn at Camp Nou Lionel Messi makes football better, according to Real Betis goalkeeper Antonio Adan, even after the Barcelona superstar piled misery upon him on Sunday.Messi inspired a devastating second-half performance from Barcelona, scoring twice and creating another for Luis Suarez as Ernesto Valverde’s La Liga leaders stormed to a 5-0 win at Estadio Benito Villamarin.The result extended Barca’s advantage at the summit over Atletico Madrid to 11 points and Real Madrid youth graduate Adan was left in awe, having mistakenly felt his team-mates might have had Messi under control. 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 “It’s spectacular. In the first half he had not appeared. He seemed to be walking,” the 30-year-old told Cadena Ser.”But he takes four balls to score two goals and give two assists. He makes this sport better.”Betis vice president Lorenzo Serra Ferrer also felt it had been a privilege to witness Messi at his brilliant best.”Messi deserves that because it is a show, what he has done in the second half,” he said. “Not only in attack but claiming balls in their own half of the field. “His humility and ability make him bigger and the public of the Villamarin has been able to appreciate the extraordinary player that is Leo Messi.”last_img read more

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Agro-Economic Zone for Holland Estate

first_img Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Investment, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. J.C. Hutchinson, says a major agro-economic zone is to be established at the Holland Estate in St. Elizabeth. Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Investment, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. J.C. Hutchinson, says a major agro-economic zone is to be established at the Holland Estate in St. Elizabeth.He made the disclosure at a recent handover ceremony for the expanded Middlesex Infant School in Holland Bamboo, in the Parish.Mr. Hutchinson said the agro-economic zone will comprise farms on the 2,400-acre estate as well as packaging and processing facilities.“Come June/July of next year, land is going to become available. I want to say to you, it has all been taken up already, and what we are talking about is a combination of large farmers and small farmers,” Mr. Hutchinson said.“We… have some persons who have said they want to do 100 acres of papaya and some also want to do fruit trees,” Hutchinson added.The Minister said when reaped, Grade ‘A’ produce would go to hotels and the export market, Grade ‘B’ to the local market, while Grade ‘C’ produce, would be used for the extraction of purée, juice and other value-added produce.The agro-economic zone will replace sugar-cane operations by J Wray & Nephew Limited at the estate.In addition, Mr. Hutchinson said produce from the agro-economic zone will be utilised in the breakfast programme at the Middlesex Infant School.“We have to ensure that these children get a proper breakfast in the morning. Why I say breakfast is because those who come to school, and you have 30 to 40 per cent of them coming to school… without a breakfast and by 9 or 10am you find the brain is not functioning properly,” he stated.“On top of that, you find most of them, when they come, the first thing they’re going to do is drink a bag juice. When you have sugar and water what happens to the child? Gone to sleep,” Mr. Hutchinson stressed.In this regard, Minister Hutchinson said fruit juice produced at the agro-economic zone will be contributed to the Middlesex Infant School.“So once you get the value chain going, we are going to get all the bag juice out of this complex, and we are going to provide them with fruit juice,” Minister Hutchinson said. He made the disclosure at a recent handover ceremony for the expanded Middlesex Infant School in Holland Bamboo, in the Parish. Mr. Hutchinson said the agro-economic zone will comprise farms on the 2,400-acre estate as well as packaging and processing facilities. Story Highlightslast_img read more

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INQUIRY DROPOUTS

first_imgAPTN NATIONAL NEWSFOUR GROUPS IN BC THAT WERE GRANTED STANDING AT THE UPCOMING PICKTON INQUIRY – SAY THEY’RE DROPPING OUT.THE BC GOVERNMENT HAS REFUSED TO PAY FOR THE GROUP’S LEGAL HELP.NOW – THE INQUIRY LOOKING INTO DEATHS OF DOZENS OF WOMEN AT THE HANDS OF SERIAL KILLER ROBERT PICKTON – SEEMS IN JEOPARDY.APTN’S WAYNE ROBERTS HAS THE STORY.last_img

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Soaring to new heights a young man gets his wings

first_imgAPTN National NewsHe’s overcome a number of obstacles in his young life, including surviving life saving surgery.But that hasn’t stopped Clarence Audy from soaring to new heights in an attempt to reach his dreams.APTN National News reporter Meagan Fiddler has the story of a remarkable young man from a Manitoba First Nation.last_img

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CMHC reports annual pace of housing starts slowed in December to 216980

first_imgOTTAWA – Housing starts in Canada hit their highest total in a decade in 2017, but are expected to slow this year, economists said Monday.BMO senior economist Robert Kavcic said the full-year tally of housing starts for 2017 came in at 221,000.“Canadian homebuilding activity had its best year in a decade in 2017, backed by underlying demographic support and strengthening labour markets in the country’s largest provinces,” he wrote in a report.However, he noted that this year the number of starts is expected to moderate closer to the 200,000 level, with a record number units under construction to start the year.Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. said Tuesday the seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts for December of 2017 came in at 216,980 units, down from 251,675 units in November. The six-month moving average for December was 226,777 compared with 226,178 in November.The housing agency said the overall decline in the annual pace of housing starts in December came as the pace of urban starts fell 15.1 per cent to 198,132 units for the final month of last year.The pace of multi-unit urban starts slowed 22 per cent to 135,176, while the rate of single-detached urban starts increased by 4.7 per cent to 62,956 units.Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 18,848 units.The housing market has been identified as a key risk to the economy and been scrutinized by economists and policy-makers.Rising interest rates and more stringent lending rules are expected to weigh on the market this year.Royal Bank assistant chief economist Paul Ferley said the total number of starts for 2017 were up 11.4 per cent from 198,000 in 2016.“Looking ahead, our expectation is that recent tightening of mortgage lending, further official interest rate increases in both Canada and the U.S. and current poor affordability in a number of key markets will contribute to housing starts continuing to trend lower.“Our forecast assumes that starts will drop to 195,000 this year and 185,000 in 2019.”last_img read more

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Moroccos Football Team Slips to 42nd Place in FIFA Rankings

Rabat- Morocco’s national football team dropped two places to 42nd in the the latest FIFA World Rankings released on Thursday.With a total of 692 points, Morocco ranks fourth in the African continent, with Tunisia ranking first and 23rd worldwide and Senegal second, clinching the 27th position, while the Democratic Republic of Congo was placed third in the African continent and 39th in the world.The Moroccan squad is followed in Africa’s ranking by Egypt (43rd), Cameroon, (51st) and Nigeria (52nd). The world ranking is still topped by Germany that won the “Team of the Year” title in 2017, followed by Brazil, Portugal and Argentina .The Moroccan team is now gearing up for the 2018 World Cup, which will take place in Russia this summer. The Atlas Lions finished undefeated in the 2018 World Cup qualifiers against strong opponents, including Mali, Gabon, and Cote D’Ivoire. The Moroccan squad will play in Group B and will face with Iran on June 15, Portugal on June 20, and Spain on June 25.This is the fifth time the Atlas Lions qualify for the World Cup following the editions of 1970 and 1986 in Mexico, 1994 in USA, and 1998 in France. read more

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Steel tariffs softwood high on agenda as Trudeau heads to American governors

OTTAWA — U.S. President Donald Trump is promising to tax steel imports again less than a week after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he believed Canada will escape expected steel tariffs imposed by the U.S.Speaking to reporters as he flew to France for a bilateral meeting, Trump said there are two ways to address what he calls unacceptable dumping of foreign steel into the U.S. market — quotas and tariffs.“Maybe I’ll do both,” he said according to a transcript of the conversation released by the White House Thursday.“Steel is a big problem. Steel is, I mean, they’re dumping steel. Not only China, but others. We’re like a dumping ground, okay? They’re dumping steel and destroying our steel industry, they’ve been doing it for decades, and I’m stopping it. It’ll stop.”The comments came immediately after Trump spoke about the trade deficit the U.S. has with South Korea, which is the third-largest source of steel imports to the U.S.But Canada is the biggest, accounting for 17 per cent of all steel imported into the United States last year.Steel was one of the subjects discussed by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau with Trump on the sidelines of the G20 leaders’ summit in Germany last weekend. Trudeau told reporters after he was “comfortable” Canada would not be affected by any national security-related import tariffs on steel.“The kind of back and forth complimentarity between Canada and the U.S. on steel is something we both value tremendously as countries and will ensure to protect,” Trudeau said July 8.The U.S. Department of Commerce is weeks overdue to decide whether or not to slap new import duties on steel on the basis of national security. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross was to have made the decision in June but as of Thursday, nothing had been finalized.He was briefing congressional representatives on the issue in Washington Thursday.Steel is also set to be on the agenda Friday when Trudeau has a bilateral meeting with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence during the annual meeting of the National Governor’s Association in Rhode Island. Softwood lumber and NAFTA are also set to be discussed. Negotiations on the trade deal will begin mid-August, while Canada and the U.S. are currently negotiating on new trade deal on softwood lumber.Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland will also be at the meeting.Her spokesman said Thursday Canada’s feelings on steel remain the same as they were following the G20.“Our North American steel and aluminum industries support good middle class jobs, are highly integrated, and our trade is highly balanced,” said Adam Austen. “As key allies and partners in Norad and NATO, Canada and the U.S. are integral to each other’s national security and Canada is a safe and secure supplier of steel and aluminum to the U.S.”Amanda DeBusk, chair of the international trade department at the D.C. law firm Hughes Hubbard and Reed, said while the Trump administration’s international trade policies may be less predictable than his predecessors, there is reason for Canada to be optimistic.“If you look at the history of trade relations in the past the U.S. has given Canada and Mexico a pass on the types of trade restrictions that are being talked about in regards to steel,” she said.The U.S. steel industry fight with China and other countries predates Trump. At the end of 2016, before Trump was inaugurated, the U.S. already had 113 different trade remedies in place on steel imports including 20 against China alone. None of them were against Canada.— follow @mrabson on Twitter. read more

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UN weapons inspection commission and Iraq start talks agree to meet again

In a statement to the press, UNMOVIC said it had provided the Iraqi officials with a list of practical arrangements related to getting inspectors back into the country following a nearly four-year absence.The Iraqi side said it needed some time to study and consult in Baghdad about these practical arrangements, according to the statement.UNMOVIC and Iraq agreed that further talks would “take place and be concluded at a meeting in Vienna in the week beginning 30 September,” the statement said, noting that the timing remains undecided as UNMOVIC Executive Chairman Hans Blix needs to be available to the Security Council.At the meeting in the Austrian capital, Iraq will provide UNMOVIC with the backlog of its semi-annual monitoring declarations. In addition, Iraq will consider national legislation based on models provided by UNMOVIC concerning the prohibition of all weapons of mass destruction activities.”Both sides believe it was a useful meeting and the Iraqi delegation welcomed the resumption of inspections,” UNMOVIC said.Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Iraqi official Saeed Hasan echoed this view, calling discussions “fruitful.””We received documents from Mr. Blix on this issue and we agreed to meet in Vienna in 10 days to finalize the practical arrangements,” he said. “Also in this meeting we reiterated and expressed the readiness of Iraq for the speedy and smooth resumption of UNMOVIC and IAEA activities.” In addition, the talks touched on “issues relating to our future common work.”Mr. Hasan said Iraq was “looking forward to meeting with Ambassador Blix and UNMOVIC officials to finalize the work and go ahead in order to implement fully all the provisions of Security Council resolutions in order to lift sanctions and return the situation to normal.” read more

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UN peacekeeping missions mandate in Burundi extended until beginning of December

The United Nations Security Council today extended the mandate of its peacekeeping UN Operation in Burundi (ONUB) for six months until 1 December and called on the African Great Lakes country’s political actors to try harder to ensure the success of their political transition, national reconciliation and long-term stability.The political parties should refrain from any actions that might affect “the cohesion of the Arusha Agreement process,” the Council said in a resolution unanimously approved today. The peace accord was brokered by former South African President Nelson Mandela and was signed in Arusha, Tanzania, in 2000.With Burundi’s constitution approved in a February referendum and its elections scheduled for later this year, the Council said it looked forward to Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s “recommendations by 15 November 2005 on the role of the United Nations in supporting Burundi, including on the possible adjustment of ONUB’s mandate and force strength, in accordance with progress made on the ground.” The Council said it was also awaiting his proposals for an international support mechanism after the transitional period.The Council had authorized the peacekeeping mission, in the establishing resolution in May of last year, to have 5,650 troops and up to 120 civilian police (CIVPOL).It welcomed ONUB’s efforts to implement Mr. Annan’s zero-tolerance policy on sexual exploitation and abuse and to ensure full compliance with the UN code of conduct.The Council also urged ONUB’s troop-contributing countries “to take appropriate preventive and disciplinary action to ensure that such (sexual exploitation) acts are properly investigated and punished in cases involving their personnel.” read more

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Osisko drops lawsuit in takeover battle Goldcorp offer extended to April 15

by The Canadian Press Posted Mar 3, 2014 8:05 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Osisko drops lawsuit in takeover battle, Goldcorp offer extended to April 15 A Goldcorp sign is pictured at the annual meeting in Toronto on May 2, 2013. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Aaron Vincent Elkaim MONTREAL – Osisko Mining Corp. (TSX:OSK) said Monday it has settled a lawsuit it filed against Goldcorp Inc. (TSX:G) as part of the Montreal-based company’s fight against a hostile takeover by the senior gold miner.Under the settlement, the offer from Vancouver-based Goldcorp has been extended to April 15, from March 10, while Osisko continues its search for an alternative bid.Osisko has also agreed to waive its shareholder rights plan by April 14 and provide Goldcorp with access to due diligence materials starting April 1, or earlier if Osisko signs a deal with another bidder.“Given the robustness of our process to pursue value maximizing alternatives, the extension to April 15, 2014 provides a meaningful extension to the anticipated time to complete this work,” Osisko president and chief executive Sean Roosen.“The April 15, 2014 date also provides certainty of timing for those in the process to complete their work and propose executable arrangements to unlock value for all stakeholders.”Osisko has urged its shareholders to reject the Goldcorp offer and called it inadequate and opportunistic.Goldcorp said it was pleased the lawsuit, in which Osisko had accused it of breaking a confidentiality agreement and failing to honour a standstill agreement, was over.“This agreement will avoid the possibility of further delays in the completion of our offer that could have arisen from appeals of the pending litigation and the operation of Osisko’s shareholder rights plan,” Goldcorp president and chief executive Chuck Jeannes said.Under terms of the Goldcorp bid, Osisko shareholders would receive 0.146 of a Goldcorp share and $2.26 in cash per Osisko share.The price of gold and share prices for many gold producers have risen in recent weeks but Osisko shares have traded well above the implied value of the Goldcorp offer since the bid was first announced.Osisko’s shares closed up 45 cents at $7.50 on the Toronto Stock Exchange on Monday after trading for as much as $7.54.Goldcorp shares closed up 55 cents at $30.32, making the implied value of its offer about $6.69 per share.Osisko’s main asset is the Canadian Malartic gold mine in northern Quebec where it has been ramping up operations since its first commercial production in May 2011. read more

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Dr James Borchers named Director of Medical Services

Dr. James Borchers is the head team physician for OSU athletics and Director of Medical Services for The Ohio State Univeristy Wexner Medical Center. Credit: Courtesy of OSU Department of AthleticsLast week, Dr. James Borchers was named head team physician for the Ohio State Department of Athletics. In the new position, Borchers will be responsible for overseeing day-to-day operations of other team physicians and ensuring that every varsity student-athlete receives the best possible care.Borchers said he is excited to take on the challenges of the new position. He started in his new role on Sept. 22.“It’s very humbling,” Borchers said. “It’s a position that I think I’ve prepared for and am really looking forward to doing. It means a lot for me in my career development, and it means a lot for me doing it here at Ohio State.”Dr. Christopher Kaeding, executive director of sports medicine at OSU, decided that with the recent expansions of the sports medicine program, it would benefit from someone heading the team physicians.“With the expansion of our program and the increase in demands, regulation and bureaucracy and the caring for a Division I collegiate athletic program, we need to expand our personnel and resources to meet those needs,” Kaeding said.And for Kaeding, Borchers was a shoe-in for the job. “I think he has a passion for the job,” Kaeding said. “He has 12 years of experience, and he understands and is very good at implementing the team concept of caring for the student athletes.”Borchers has been working at Ohio State for 12 years, but his time as a Buckeye started long before his time in the sports medicine program. After leaving his hometown of Bellbrook, Ohio, Borchers played center and long snapper for the OSU football team from 1989 to 1993. But, as a player, Borchers was still a bit unsure about what the future had in store for him.“At that time when I played, I had an interest in medicine, but I also had some other interests and I didn’t really, at that point, have it figured out that that’s what I wanted to do,” Borchers said. “But certainly we had great team physicians back then, and I really appreciated the care I got. And I think as I went on and went to medical school and got involved in medicine, I really appreciated it more.”After graduating from OSU, Borchers went on to the Northeastern Ohio College of Medicine, where he received his M.D. He completed his residency and fellowship at the University of Toledo Athletic Department from 2000 to 2004. Since then, Borchers has been providing care to varsity athletes at his alma mater in the role of team physician.While working as a physician, Borchers completed his master’s of public health at Ohio State in 2008, a degree that has done a lot to benefit him in his line of work.“It’s been helpful as a sports medicine physician because although we are concerned about individual athletes, often times we are making decisions, too, that affect teams and groups of people and looking for ways to help treat certain injury types or prevent certain injury types so it really has been helpful for me with my career,” Borchers said.Over the last two years, Borchers has had a more advanced role in the sports medicine field, serving the program at OSU as lead physician, associate professor, and division director of sports medicine.To Kaeding, Borchers’ promotion serves more as a new title than new tasks to complete.“It’s actually a very small jump from being the director of clinical operations to being the head team physician,” Kaeding said. “He’s essentially been doing the majority of the job as head team physician already; we’re just recognizing him with the formal title.”But the new title does come with some additional responsibilities. In addition to overseeing other team physicians, Borchers will serve as the executor of the policies decided on by the Ohio State Sports Medicine Administrative Group. According to Kaeding, the group has to “formulate the policies and procedures for the care of the athletes.”The group is an “intersection where the medical center and athletic department meet” and it consists of Janine Oman, senior associate athletics director for student services and sport administration, and Doug Calland, associate athletic director for sport performance, along with Kaeding and Borchers. Looking ahead, Borchers has a few goals in mind.“Primarily, first and foremost, (our goal) is to make certain that we’re leaders in advancing health and safety for our student athletes,” Borchers said. “We want to make certain that we are staying on the forefront of everything we can do to promote health and safety for our student athletes and be advocates for them.”Borchers said being at the top of sports health care and providing a friendly and helpful atmosphere is key to the success.“Secondarily, we want to make certain that we’re providing an environment where we are doing all that we can to help these student athletes be accessible to the things they love to do,” Borchers continued. “And so we have to help work within our multidisciplinary team to make that happen and if I can provide some leadership in that area, I will be happy to accomplish it.” read more

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Mens basketball Ohio State battles Stanford at PK80 after suffering first loss

Ohio State senior forward Jae’Sean Tate (1) dunks the ball during the second half of a game against Texas Southern at the Schottenstein Center on Nov. 16. Credit: Nick Clarkson | Social Media EditorThe Ohio State Buckeyes (4-1) go back to the court in Portland, Oregon, against the Stanford Cardinal (3-3) in the PK80 Invitational Friday night at 9 p.m. Chris Holtmann had his first loss as the Buckeyes’ head coach Thursday night in an 86-59 loss against No. 17 Gonzaga, while the Cardinal were dominated by No. 7 Florida, 108-87.Here’s a rundown of the Buckeyes’ matchup with Stanford at the Moda Center.Projected StartersStanford:G – Daejon Davis – Freshman, 6-foot-3, 175 lbs., 7.0 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 4.8 apgG – Isaac White – Freshman, 6-foot-1, 185 lbs., 11.5 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 1.3 apgF – Oscar da Silva – Freshman, 6-foot-9, 210 lbs., 7.2 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 0.5 apgF – Reid Travis – Redshirt junior, 6-foot-8, 245 lbs, 21.5 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 2.2 apgF – Michael Humphrey – Senior, 6-foot-9, 245 lbs., 11.8 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 0.7 apgOhio State:G – C.J. Jackson – Junior, 6-foot-1, 175 lbs., 11.2 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 4.8 apgG – Musa Jallow – Freshman, 6-foot-5, 200 lbs., 7.0 ppg, 1.4 rpg, 0.8 apgF – Jae’Sean Tate – Senior, 6-foot-4, 230 lbs., 14.6 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 2.2 apgF – Keita Bates-Diop – Redshirt junior, 6-foot-7, 235 lbs., 16.8 ppg, 10.0 rpg, 0.6 apgF – Kaleb Wesson – Freshman, 6-foot-9, 270 lbs., 11.0 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 0.4 apgScouting StanfordOhio State was exposed inside against Gonzaga on Thursday. The Bulldogs were taller at every position matched up against the Buckeyes and much will be the same in the frontcourt versus Stanford.Forwards Reid Travis and Michael Humphrey are the two most experienced members of a young Cardinal team. They attack the glass almost every possession, but can also stretch the floor. Humphrey and Travis each attempt more than two 3s per game.Ohio State forward Jae’Sean Tate often subdues any physical disparities with his aggressive play on the glass and in the post, but where the Buckeyes will have to play sound defense is when 7-footer Josh Sharma (4.5 ppg) enters off the bench. Sharma played 20 minutes against Florida and scored nine points while grabbing six rebounds.If sophomore center Micah Potter’s ankle injury holds him out for a second straight game, freshman Kaleb Wesson will have to play extended minutes against a big lineup.Stanford is without senior guard Dorian Pickens, who is nursing a foot injury, which forced head coach Jerod Haase to start three freshmen. Pickens is averaging 10.5 points in two games.The Cardinal had the 13th-best 2017 recruiting class, according to 247Sports, but they’re an inexperienced group. Against Florida, Stanford struggled to get back in transition and defend the 3-point line. Florida shot 65 percent in the first half and made 15-of-22 3-point shots versus the Cardinal.Like Ohio State, Stanford is often overmatched against top teams. But unlike Ohio State, the Cardinal have a bad loss on its resume to Eastern Washington.In that game, the Cardinal shot 34 percent and were 2-of-16 from the 3-point line.Stanford is ranked No. 77 and Ohio State is No. 74, according to KenPom statistical ratings.Where the game is wonOhio State and Stanford have both struggled turning the ball over so far this season. Both the Buckeyes and Cardinal were gouged in transition by their first opponent in the PK80 Invitational, which makes that an area that can decide the game Friday night.Stanford turned the ball over 18 times versus Florida. Ohio State had 15 turnovers against Gonzaga. The Gators converted those into 32 points and the Bulldogs scored 17 off turnovers.Florida and Gonzaga were faster and more athletic than the opposition and it showed when the two teams were running down the floor. Ohio State and Stanford are both relatively young teams and will likely improve in transition defense as the season wears on, but that’s an area Holtmann has prided himself on in coaching the Buckeyes. It could be the deciding factor Friday. read more

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Mobile phone networks could be shut off during G8 due to terror

first_imgNEW LAWS COULD see mobile phone networks shut down in certain areas during the G8 summit due to the threat of terrorist activity.Minister for Justice and Defence Alan Shatter told the Select Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality today that the proposed amendments to the Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) Bill 2013 came about because of the possibility of terrorist activity when the G8 takes place in Fermanagh in June.He said that he intends to introduce amendments to “deal with threat to life and property posed by explosive devices which make use of mobile communications technology in their construction or activation”.Prevent death or damageShatter described the purpose of the amendments as allowing for “direction to issue to mobile phone services providers to cease service provision in a limited area in order to prevent death or damage to property”.The provision will contain safeguards to ensure that any interference with services is limited to the extent necessary to deal with the threat, he added.In order for the full house to have an opportunity to consider these new elements, the amendments will be introduced at report stage on 22 May.As these provisions are outside the scope of the current title of the bill, the title will also have to be amended.The reason behind the legislation, said Shatter, is that it is “possible that terrorist groups may try to use the occasion of the summit to at the very least garner publicity for themselves”.He said that there is also a “real danger of loss of life if such a device was successfully detonated”.ThreatsIn 2012, Pakistan blocked its mobile phone service during Eid to prevent possible terror attacks. Mobile phones have been used to detonate bombs in some countries, including Madrid in 2004.In 2003, the FBI said that it found bombs that were detonated by remote control in Saudi Arabia, while in 2002 a Jersusalem bombing was detonated using a call from a mobile phone.It was also investigated whether a bomb planted in Belfast in March of this year could have been detonated by mobile phone.Read: Michelle Obama and daughters set to visit Ireland>last_img read more

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Smokers pay extra for doc

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram A medical practice in NSW that charges smokers $10 extra to see a GP have been criticised for discriminating against those that need the care the most.The fee discrepency came to light after a couple were told that if they had been non-smokers the fee would have been $56 instead of the $66 standard consultation fee the Lochinvar Medical Centre in the NSW Hunter Valley charges for smokers.“I feel it’s discrimination against smokers,” Joanne Dennis told The Australian. “They don’t charge more for people addicted to alcohol or cannabis or speed. It’s my choice to smoke. I don’t feel I should be charged for it, I’m charged enough when I buy a packet of cigarettes.” Ms Dennis said the practice manager, Felicity Goswell, the wife of the clinic’s GP, John Goswell, had said it was a reward system for non-smokers.“They are being judgmental … would he be judgmental of someone’s weight or someone’s mental illness?”Liz Marles, vice-president of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, said charging smokers higher doctor’s fees would not encourage smokers to quit.Carol Bennett, executive director of the Consumers Health Forum, said charging smokers more was “a bit like penalising the poor” and the “ultimate goal should be to improve healthcare outcomes”.last_img read more

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Athens where art never sleeps

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Athens is the New Berlin has become a common press tagline recently. Vallejo Gantner, the former director of PS122, one of New York’s contemporary performance institutions and I, a Diaspora Greek arts manager, were in Athens in to see if the city is going through a creative regeneration.  Artists, collectives, new bars, farm-to-table restaurants, startups, and alternative music venues are amassing in Athens. Abandoned buildings, the scars from what Greeks simply call ‘the Crisis’ are turning to cultural spaces and startups. Political statements are now blazoning street art. Artists from Mexico, Bali, New York and Western Europe are making Athens a new base. Is Athens the New Berlin? No, it is Athens. But, something is happening.Over 30m tourists visited Greece in 2017. According to the World Tourism and Trade Council, seven percent of Greece’s GDP $14.7bn USD is derived from tourism. 2017 will end as an “all-time record year for Athens tourism”, with more than five million visitors.“The stories coming out of Athens, talk of new ideas in the arts, of start-ups, of a new pulse – is it real? Gantner asks. Can Athens avoid the traps of gentrification? Worldwide there is a conversation around creative industry-driven economic urban rejuvenation– but in the medium to long term, it may ignore a host of negative outcomes.“You see more from the outside, but it’s better that someone talks about you than you talking about it” says Nikos Trivoulidis the Development Manager of Benaki Museum.Benaki museums include collections of Ancient Cycladic, Byzantine and Islamic Art as well as a new contemporary space.“We are agents of change, we do not follow government agendas, and we’re independent,” Trivoulidis says.Old money is coming back as shiny new cultural institutions. The Onassis Cultural Centre, a new €560 million complex includes a concert hall, theatres, exhibition spaces, and studios. The Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Centre  extends over 210,000sq meters was a snap at €760 million. Designed by Renzo Piano it houses the National Opera and National Library within a vast park full of landscaped, hollow signifiers.  The shelves of the library remain strangely bare.Benaki, Onassis and Niarchos, the key philanthropic institutions, are the elephants in the city, presenting, programming and making some grants.Yet, these foundations’ billions are managed outside Greece through complex offshore holding structures. Few trust government. The state has retreated from much of Athens’ cultural and civic life.It regulates and adds more taxes on the citizenry and small business, playing catch up for years of bad management. But from the state’s absence also comes freedom.Institutions are forced to explore new avenues in their quest for sustainability.National Theater of Greece director Stathis Livathinos has a vision for experimental programming in a stalwart traditional theatre institution. Georgina Kakoudaki, the education director the Epidaurus Lyceum Hellenic Festival says the Festival “once focused on tourism” is now invested in “pedagogy, Greek performance and international contemporary theatre”. Athens starts at 9am and ends at 4am. The city has its own distorted symphony made of diverse music from limitless bars and cafes, car horns, vendors’ shouts, people talking, dogs barking, scouters and motorbikes.Psyri, previously a poor inner city neighborhood is now a hipster hub. The hole-in-the-wall bar, Cantina Social, renowned for alternative music and heaving late night parties is burrowed in a secret courtyard. Embros an abandoned warehouse is a performance space run by a collective presenting theatre, performance, dance and alternative music.One of the group who initially took over Embros, Gigi Argyropoulou, an artist and curator working in performance and cultural practice, went on to cooperatively initiate the occupation and curation of Green Park a former genteel café, now shuttered and abused, in a once elegant city park.“We broke in during summer pretending we were from the Ministry of Works, we cleaned Green Park, used electricity illegally and the event produced itself,” Argyropoulou says.“We had over 300 presentations and we broke down categorizations by having established artists, new artists, community activists, immigrants and refugees” she adds.Ash Bulayev, a former curator from EMPAC in New York City, lives in Athens now.“I consult for the Onassis Foundation and work on international projects, a proportion of my income comes from outside Greece,” he says.“Life here is good, we do what we want, but it’s hard to know how an artist can live only from Greek income,” he says as we obliterate the baby quid and dry white wine in a tavern in Psyri’s hair-thin alleyways.Daniel Wetzel a co-director of Rimini Protokoll has also made Athens his home. The group’s Evros Walk Water presented in May, was built on narratives from young refugees in Athens and a loop of John Cage’s 1959 Walk Water.“I am astonished at how many things we’ve done despite the lack of money in Athens,” he Wetzel says.Yolanda Markopoulos the director of Mind the Fact, festival engaging refugees, homeless and low-income families, headed an artists’ occupation of an abandoned multi-storey building in 2007.“The Crisis gave us freedom, no one was telling us what to do,” she says.“Pakistani, Afghani, and Bangladeshi refugees stayed in Athens because of how we involved them in the project” Markopoulos points out.Ioanna Valsamidou a co-curator of the festival says that she can’t remember “the city being so alive as it is now”.“The over fifties those who lost everything can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel” she says.There is an impressive, locally generated energy of the young and fired up. However the veterans, those that lost, and those inside institutions convey the cynicism of the often betrayed.Barbara Dukas, from the National Theatre of Greece is doing what she can.“I produced Women of Troy in Iran, I undertook delicate negotiations like, is it Iran or Persia? And, what of the role of women in the work? It was successful, but here we struggle,” Dukas says.Jim, a tired middle-aged real-estate agent, makes the same commission from selling seven apartments as he did selling one before the Crisis. Yet, he’s now selling apartments again this time to Greek Diaspora from the US and Australia, Israelis, Germans and Chinese for a third of the cost in their cities.Jim warned an Israeli buyer wanting to buy in Exarchia – the Anarchist friendly neighborhood – that riots erupt between Anarchists and police sporadically. His buyer said, “Great it reminds me of Haifa but without the bullets.”Not all in the arts sector welcome the new spotlight on Athens as the benefits fall unevenly.Vasilis, the owner of Bios Romantzo Centre has for the last eighteen years run a multilevel contemporary arts and performance center in the historic building of Romantzo magazine.“The BBC, the Guardian, everyone comes here to ask about resilience,” Vasilis is tired of Crisis born “fetish for Athens”.“Whatever you do, don‘t call us the new Berlin,” says Gabriella Triantafyllis the Programming Manager of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Centre.Triantafyllis says that no state subsidies from 2010 to 2016 have resulted in “performance values and skills seriously dropping.”Scratch the surface and pessimism about the long-term sustainability of the arts becomes clearer. Veterans identify gaps in capacity both artistic and institutional.“Discussions of the creative economy forget the arts, we can have lots of new restaurants and bars but that’s not enough.“Look at Psyri you can’t have a neighborhood of just cafes, bars and clubs,” Triantafyllis says.A choreographer, who wishes to remain anonymous, broke into tears when she spoke of “exhaustion,” of “losing spaces”, “of the poverty” and the lack of resources. The craving for institutional recognition by artists, and some form of reward is difficult to shake.Unlike PS122, which began by artists breaking into an abandoned public school in New York’s Lower East Side and is now a major, private and publicly support institution, Athens occupations are energized, political, but temporal. They begin, explode and fade into history, a little like Athens has over the millennia. Trying to find Green Park in the mistreated Pedion to Areos Gardens at dusk we see what look like fireflies. The flashes however are lighters heating pipes of Sisa, ‘the poor person’s coke’ a dangerously toxic meth. The cops roll in on their motorbikes and the addicts scatter like the living dead.Next to the park is a sports stadium where young African and European Greeks students play together. Training in discus and javelin creating a retro-future multicultural tableau.Athens is about sharp contrasts. Fashionable bars and cafes a street away from older impoverished Greeks bedding down on the street. Young entrepreneurs and artists are finding opportunities.Maybe the Greeks’ instinct for freedom and enterprise has kicked in. Is it enough? It’s difficult to predict. But certainly things are happening for the first time in a long time.last_img read more