Stupid justice: Anderson, Jadeja found not guilty by ICC Judicial Commissioner

first_imgThe Judicial Commissioner has found both England’s James Anderson (right) and Ravindra Jadeja of India not guilty of breaching the ICC Code of Conduct. (AP photo)England’s pace spearhead James Anderson and Indian all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja were on Friday found not guilty of breaching ICC Code of Conduct after a marathon six-hour hearing, putting an end to the suspense over their participation for the remaining part of the Test series. Anderson and Jadeja not guilty, what? The hearing, conducted by Judicial Commissioner Gordon Lewis took place via video-conference, and verdict came as a huge relief for Anderson, who faced the prospect of a two-Test ban if he had been found guilty of a Level 3 offence.Anderson was accused of pushing and abusing Jadeja during the second day of the first Test at Trent Bridge on July 10.England had also pressed for a Level 2 charge against Jadeja as a counter move.”His Honor Gordon Lewis AM, the Judicial Commissioner, has found both England’s James Anderson and Ravindra Jadeja of India not guilty of breaching the ICC Code of Conduct,” ICC said in a statement.”The Judicial Commissioner reached his decisions following a six-hour hearing, which took place via video-conference. Witnesses, including some Indian and English players, provided evidence and were cross-examined by the respective legal counsels,” the statement added.The ECB and Anderson were represented in the hearings by Nick De Marco while Adam Lewis QC represented Jadeja. The hearings were also attended by the two team managers, the ECB?s Paul Downton, the BCCI?s Sundar Raman and MV Sridhar, the ICC?s General Manager (Cricket), Geoff Allardice, and the ICC?s Ethics and Regulatory lawyer, Sally Clark.advertisementAnderson and Jadeja were charged under Level 3 and 2 of the ICC Code of Conduct for Players and Player Support Personnel by India team manager Sunil Dev and England team manager Phil Neale respectively following the alleged incident.The Indians alleged that Anderson pushed and abused Jadeja when the players were leaving the ground for the lunch break and pressed with the charge.The England team then filed a counter charge of Level 2, against Jadeja but match referee David Boon downgraded it to a level 1 offence and docked him 50 percent of his match fee.Although it is an non-appealable offence, the Indians appealed against the verdict and the ICC accepted the plea.All Level 3 breaches carry a penalty of between four and eight Suspension Points while Level 2 offences carry a fine of between 50-100 per cent of applicable Match Fee and/or up to two Suspension Points. Two suspension points equates to a ban of one Test, or two ODIs, depending on which type of match is scheduled next for the suspended player.After a dramatic series-levelling defeat for India in the third Test, the action shifted to the Grand Harbour hotel in the city. The Indian team was lodged here for the duration of the stay in this city and thus it served well as the venue for the hearing.Anderson, who won the man-of-the-match award for his match haul of 7-77 in the 266-run victory for England, arrived at the hotel almost an hour ahead of the scheduled 9am start of the hearing.Gordon Lewis held the hearing from Melbourne via Skype as both sides presented their cases with their legal teams in tow.The Indian team was scheduled to leave for Manchester this morning, where the fourth Test will be played from August 7. Most of the 18-member squad and support staff did leave, with exception of skipper MS Dhoni, coach Duncan Fletcher, Jadeja himself and Gautam Gambhir, who were witnesses in the alleged incident.Dhoni and Jadeja were batting for India when they had returned to the pavilion during the lunch break when the latter was pushed on the way to the dressing room inside the pavilion. Ashwin and Gambhir were said to be present at the boundary line.England too presented their witnesses, namely wicket-keeper Matt Prior and all-rounder Stuart Broad, who arrived just before the hearing was scheduled to start.It is believed that the entire morning was spent in recording the deposition of the witnesses, and this process took nearly four hours. Prior and Broad left the premises together around 1pm, with Anderson overlooking from the hearing room?s window. An hour later, Gambhir left with his family and Fletcher too departed, both in separate cars.The hearing stretched further into a sixth hour as the depositions went on. It is understood that the Indian management had brought forth key video evidence in this matter, which was previously not available since the CCTV installed in the pavilion wasn?t yet in working condition for the second Test.advertisementAround 4pm then, almost six hours after the proceedings started, Dhoni, Jadeja and physio Evan Speechly (another witness) were seen leaving the premises.last_img read more

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Olympiacos Blanks Xanthi, 2-0

first_imgATHENS — Alejandro Domingues and Ibrahim Affelay scored in the second half to lead Greek league leader Olympiacos to a 2-0 victory over Xanthi on March 15.Olympiacos is three points clear of second-place Panathinaikos and has a game in hand. However, Panathinaikos is currently appealing a deduction of three points for crowd violence during its home game against Olympiacos.The league played for a second weekend in a row in empty stadiums, as the Greek authorities mull measures to stem crowd violence.Also, Kalloni beat Veria 4-1, Kerkyra beat OFI by the same score, while missing two first-half penalties, while Giannena vs. Panetolikos and Panionios vs. Platanias ended 0-0.TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img

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Iran prosecutor says no repeat of women at football matches

first_imgTehran, Oct 17 (AFP) Iran’s prosecutor general said Wednesday there would be no repeat of women watching football matches inside stadiums, saying it would “lead to sin”.The comments by Mohammad Jafar Montazeri came a day after around 100 women were allowed to watch their country take on Bolivia in a friendly at the national stadium — an extremely rare step in the Islamic republic.”I object to the presence of women in Azadi Stadium yesterday. We are a Muslim state, we are Muslims,” Montazeri said, according to the conservative Mehr news agency.”We will deal with any official who wants to allow women inside stadiums under any pretext,” he added.Women have been barred from attending matches since the 1979 Islamic revolution, with clerics arguing they must be protected from the masculine atmosphere and sight of semi-clad men.They have also worried about the crush of men and women when leaving stadiums.There had been reports that women would also be allowed to attend the return match of the 2018 AFC Champions League semi-finals on October 23, but Montazeri warned sports officials that he would not allow it.”If this is repeated I will order the Tehran prosecutor to act,” he said. (AFP) ZHZHlast_img read more

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Report: Benin 0 Guinea-Bissau 0

first_imgBenin and Guinea-Bissau played out Saturday’s third consecutive 0-0 draw at the Africa Cup of Nations to leave qualification from Group F up in the air.After their entertaining opening encounter with Ghana finished 2-2, Benin had the most to rue from a dour match because they must still play defending champions Cameroon.The best chances in each half fell to their striker Steve Mounie, who was unable to capitalise despite turning in a tireless performance. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Cameroon – the Indomitable Lions – remain top of the section on four points having won 2-0 in their initial contest against Guinea-Bissau, who against Benin offered little in pursuit of a maiden AFCON win at Ismailia Stadium.Ismailia stadium is ON FIRE! #GHABEN #TotalAFCON2019 pic.twitter.com/YBtgMG1zlO— CAF (@CAF_Online) June 29, 2019Cameroon and Ghana’s earlier stalemate left the door ajar for both group outsiders to progress, possibly contributing to a cagey opening.A superb throughball from Benin midfielder Jordan Adeoti sent Mounie charging towards goal in the 37th minute, when the Huddersfield Town player forced Jonas Mendes to save sharply down to his left.In a development that scarcely felt possible, the quality of creative play from each team diminished after the break and clear openings remained at a premium.Mounie cut the ball across the six-yard box in the 66th minute but none of his team-mates were on hand to convert.Benin’s number nine slammed his hands against the crossbar in frustration when he headed over unmarked from Stephane Sessegnon’s floated free-kick and there would be no way through.last_img read more

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Chinese Coaches Depart Under Technical Agreement in Sport

first_img The Honourable Olivia Grange, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport has described as “successful” the first phase in the implementation of a three-year Technical Agreement on Sport between Jamaica and the People’s Republic of China.Miss Grange was speaking at a ceremony at her Ministry today during which she presented Certificates of Appreciation to the Chinese team of coaches and officials who came to Jamaica at the start of the year to conduct one month of coaching for coaches and athletes in seven sporting disciplines.The Chinese return home tomorrow (February 9) after conducting training sessions with athletes, holding coaching seminars and developing training plans in collaboration with local coaches for the athletes being recommended for training in China in the second phase of implementation which will be in July and August 2018.Sessions which were for Synchronized Swimming, now known also as Artistic Swimming; Swimming; Basketball for females; Football for women; Volleyball for women; Badminton and Gymnastics, were conducted at the GC Foster College of Physical Education Sport, the National Stadium, YMCA and the Jamaica School of Gymnastics.Minister Grange told the Chinese team that, “We are very happy and thankful for the work you did over these past weeks for the advancement of these sports in Jamaica. China is assisting us and Jamaica is assisting China in Sport which is the universal message of peace and love.”“Jamaica and China have a strong relationship and through agreements between us such as this one on sport the bond between the two countries is getting even stronger.”Mr Jianghong Fan, Counsellor in the Chinese Embassy said too that, “although China and Jamaica are already great friends the project brings us closer.”Mr. Fan said the three-year project had got off to a great start and that he wanted to congratulate the Chinese team and the team at the Ministry on behalf of the Chinese Ambassador to Jamaica.Representatives attending the presentation ceremony from the sporting bodies for Swimming, Synchronised Swimming, Volleyball, Badminton, Gymnastics and Women’s Football, all praised the first phase coaching activities and said their sport would benefit “significantly” from the knowledge imparted.For the second phase of the agreement, a group of 138 people will leave Jamaica for China in July and remain until the end of August. The group will include athletes, coaches, government officials and a news reporter.Among the activities for the second phase will be, “an integrative method of theoretical teaching and sports practice with observations of competitions and assessment of results, geared to improving the levels of competitiveness and athletic performance of Jamaican sports teams.”Competitions within Jamaican sports teams as well as with Chinese sports teams will also be organised by the end of the training.The Agreement also calls for China to donate sports equipment to Jamaica; delivery of which is scheduled for October 2018. The Honourable Olivia Grange, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport has described as “successful” the first phase in the implementation of a three-year Technical Agreement on Sport between Jamaica and the People’s Republic of China. Minister Grange told the Chinese team that, “We are very happy and thankful for the work you did over these past weeks for the advancement of these sports in Jamaica. China is assisting us and Jamaica is assisting China in Sport which is the universal message of peace and love.” The Chinese return home tomorrow (February 9) after conducting training sessions with athletes, holding coaching seminars and developing training plans in collaboration with local coaches for the athletes being recommended for training in China in the second phase of implementation which will be in July and August 2018. Story Highlightslast_img read more

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Prosecutors recommend trial for Air France over 2009 crash

first_imgParis: French prosecutors have recommended that Air France face trial for manslaughter and negligence over the 2009 crash of a flight from Rio de Janeiro to Paris in which 228 people died, judicial sources said. They concluded that Air France was aware of technical problems with a key speed-measuring instrument on its Airbus A330 plane, but had failed to inform or train pilots on how to resolve the issue, according to an investigation document seen by AFP. Also Read – US blacklists 28 Chinese entities over abuses in XinjiangFlight AF447 plunged into the Atlantic during a storm on June 1, 2009, with a defect with the plane’s Pitot tubes — which enable pilots to monitor their speed — found to be the cause of the crash. It took two years to find the wreckage of the plane off Brazil which was eventually located by remote-controlled submarines at a depth of 3,900 metres. The prosecutors recommended dropping the case against Airbus, despite demands from the families of victims that the aircraft manufacturer should also be held accountable for the crash. Both companies had been charged with manslaughter in 2011. Also Read – Want to bring back US forces engaged in endless wars: TrumpIn a legal case that is now into its 10th year, investigating magistrates who are in charge of the case must now decide whether to follow the recommendations of prosecutors and bring the case to trial. Air France will also be able to appeal any decision to bring the case to court. A report from French air crash investigator BEA in 2012 concluded that the ill-prepared crew had failed to react correctly when their Airbus stalled and lost altitude after the speed sensors froze up. Aircraft safety has been in the spotlight this year after two crashes involving the 737 MAX plane from US aircraft manufacturer Boeing, which has led to the global fleet of the aircraft being grounded as a result.last_img read more

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Ayodhya case SC asks how birth place can be made party to

first_imgNew Delhi: The Supreme Court Thursday asked ‘Ram Lalla Virajman’, one of the parties in the politically sensitive Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute at Ayodhya, as to how the birth place of the deity can be regarded as a “juristic person” having stakes in the case.The apex court, which was hearing the case on the third day, said that so far as Hindu deities are concerned, they have been treated as juristic person in law which can hold properties and institute a litigation. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c detailsA five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, however, asked senior advocate K Parasaran, appearing for ‘Ram Lalla Virajman’, as to how ‘Janamsthanam’ (birth place) can file a suit in this matter as a party.”Whether the birth place can be held to be a juristic person. So far as idols of deities are concerned, they had been held to be a juristic person,” said the bench, also comprising Justices S A Bobde, D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S A Nazeer. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from ThursdayResponding to the query, Parasaran told the bench, “In Hindu religion, idols are not necessary for a place to be regarded as a holy place of worship…. Rivers and Sun are also worshipped in Hinduism and birth place in itself can be treated as a juristic person.” The law suit filed by the deity in the Ayodhya case has also made the birth place of Lord Ram as one of the parties.The bench then referred to a judgement of the Uttarakhand High Court in which the holy river Ganga was held to be a juristic entity entitled to pursue the litigation. “The Uttarakhand High Court has said that the rivers are also juristic entities capable of being a party in the case,” the bench observed.The bench then asked Parasaran to proceed with his submissions on other issues.Parasaran alleged that the deity ‘Ram Lalla Virajaman’ was not made a party when the magistrate had attached the disputed site and when the civil court granted injunction by appointing receiver in the case.Highlighting the importance of birth place, Parasaran recited a Sanskrit Shloka, ‘Janani janmbhoomis cha swargadapi gariyasi’, and said that a birth place is greater than heaven.The argument would continue in the post-lunch session.At the outset, senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, appearing for a Muslim party, said that the two separate law suits filed by ‘Ram Lalla Virajman’ and ‘Nirmohi Akhara’ respectively are at “loggerheads” of each other and if one is allowed then other goes automatically.He suggested that the Muslim party can be asked to advance submissions in either of the law suits as only can be allowed legally.Fourteen appeals have been filed in the apex court against the 2010 Allahabad High Court judgment, delivered in four civil suits, that the 2.77-acre land in Ayodhya be partitioned equally among the three parties — the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla.On December 6, 1992, the Babri Masjid, constructed at the disputed site in the 16th century by Shia Muslim Mir Baqi, was demolished.last_img read more

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Killings prompt review of Toronto police handling of missing persons cases

first_imgTORONTO – How Toronto police handled the cases of men missing from the city’s gay village will undergo some form of external review in light of six murder charges laid against an alleged serial killer, the police oversight board decided on Thursday.In a motion to the board, Mayor John Tory said a series of “troubling questions” had arisen in light of the killings for which self-employed landscaper Bruce McArthur has been charged.“The genesis of today’s motion goes back to series of tragic and horrific events that deeply affected all of us in Toronto,” Tory said. “It’s fair to say that the list of unanswered and very troubling questions that have caused a lot of anxiety in the community has grown longer.”Tory said it was time to get answers to questions around missing-persons reports in an effort to maintain or renew confidence in policing in the city.Tory’s unanimously approved motion calls for a seven-member working group — which would include three external members — to be set up by April 28 to advise the board by June on the composition and structure of an external review or reviews.What’s important, Tory stressed, is that any review not interfere with judicial proceedings against McArthur, who has been charged with six counts of first-degree murder. The remains of some of the 66-year-old’s alleged victims were found in planter boxes at homes where he worked.Chief Mark Saunders, who has already initiated an internal review that will be made public once completed, has also been calling for some kind of a public inquiry. Saunders said it would be in the public interest to have the review.“For Toronto’s LGBTQ community, this has been a very difficult time and I know that many are very upset and many are still grieving,” Saunders told the board. “They have many questions about what happened and what could have been done differently.”Some members of the public who spoke to Thursday’s board meeting expressed anger at how police have treated the community. One of them accused Saunders of engaging in “victim blaming” by saying police had little co-operation in responding to missing-persons reports.“You are not innocent in any of this,” said deputant Brian De Matos.Police initially began investigating the disappearance of three men in 2012 but ended the project in 2014 after they were unable to classify anyone as a suspect. In August, police launched a second operation that looked into the disappearances of two men from the gay village, eventually leading to McArthur’s arrest earlier this year.Tory said some questions will have to wait until the ongoing police investigations and any trials are completed. He said he continues to support asking the province to consider a full-scale public inquiry at the appropriate time.“This case is beyond horrific and our community deserves justice, absolute answers and closure,” Tory said. “While I recognize all these things could take time after such a tragedy, I am dedicated to this process so that we can restore trust, confidence and begin what I’m sure will be a lengthy healing process.”last_img read more

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TIFFS CANADAS TOP TEN LIST SKEWS A LOT YOUNGER THIS YEAR

first_imgArlen Aguayo Stewart rides away with Katherine Jerkovic’s Roads In February. Both of the Canadian features that won prizes at TIFF made the cut – Katherine Jerkovic’s generational drama Roads In February, which won the $15,000 City of Toronto award for best Canadian first feature, and Sébastian Pilote’s restless-teen study The Fireflies Are Gone, which took the $30,000 Canada Goose award for best Canadian feature film. But that’s just the start.Jasmin Mozaffari’s Firecrackers, a drama expanded by the filmmaker from her 2013 short, Philippe Lesage’s ambitious, exploratory Genesis and Keith Behrman’s sexually charged teen study Giant Little Ones are all occupied with themes of young people finding themselves – as is Patricia Rozema’s tricky adaptation of Amy Nostbakken and Norah Sadava’s theatrical drama Mouthpiece, though that film is a very different animal. And Christy Garland’s documentary What Walaa Wants follows a young woman forging her own path as a cadet in the Palestinian Police Academy after her mother’s release from an Israeli jail.A case could even be made to include Freaks in this thematic umbrella, as Vancouver filmmakers Zach Lipovsky and Adam Stein’s first theatrical feature is built around a little girl (Lexy Kolker) with an overprotective father (Emile Hirsch) who won’t let her leave the house. There’s obviously a lot more to it than that – the film starts as a weird cousin to Terry Gilliam’s Tideland and quickly mutates into a riff on Noah Hawley’s FX series Legion. I would never have expected to see this movie make the Top Ten – seriously, the last honouree this weird was Vincenzo Natali’s Splice in 2009 – and its presence is a surprise, to say the least.It might also indicate the influence of external film critics’ associations. TIFF’s internal programming team consulted both the Vancouver Film Critics Circle and Association Québécoise Des Critiques de Cinéma in compiling this year’s list. (The Toronto Film Critics Association – of which I am a member – was also contacted, but declined to participate.)Gwaai Edenshaw and Helen Haig-Brown’s Indigenous thriller Edge Of The Knife, the first feature produced in the endangered Haida language, and Anthropocene: The Human Epoch, Jennifer Baichwal, Nicholas de Pencier and Edward Burtynsky’s latest chapter in the decade-long documentary project following Manufactured Landscapes and Watermark, round out the list.And if this was a year for new faces and a youthful focus, that meant Canada’s old guard was mostly on the outside. Other than Rozema and Baichwal, filmmakers who might have once been able to make TIFF’s Top Ten just by showing up were conspicuously absent.It’s perhaps no surprise that Xavier Dolan’s long-awaited English-language drama The Death And Life Of John F. Donovan, didn’t make the list; it cratered spectacularly at TIFF, no matter how fervently Dolan’s boosters insist otherwise. Denys Arcand’s The Fall Of The American Empire, the wheezy final entry in the film cycle Arcand started three decades ago with The Decline Of The American Empire, similarly failed to garner any critical or public support, slipping into the same vaguely recalled limbo that swallowed up Days Of Darkness.Also absent: Maxime Giroux’s ambitious historical allegory The Great Darkened Days, a follow-up to his critically beloved Félix & Meira; Don McKellar’s film based on Joseph Boyden’s controversial novel Through Black Spruce; Thom Fitzgerald’s adaptation of Lee-Anne Poole’s stage play Splinters; and Sharkwater: Extinction, a documentary completed after credited director Rob Stewart died during its production.I was a little more surprised to see Darlene Naponse’s Falls Around Her and Igor Drljaca’s The Stone Speakers fail to make the list; the former showcases Tantoo Cardinal in a knockout performance as an Anishinaabe musician returning home to Northern Ontario, and the latter is an intriguing documentary that finds the filmmaker examining his Bosnian-Canadian heritage through the prism of cultural tourism.Neither film is perfect, but they’re excellent examples of idiosyncratic Canadian cinema from gifted storytellers; I was sure they’d be catnip to TIFF’s selection committee. But I’m pretty happy with the titles they chose – especially Roads In February, which is exactly the sort of tiny, lovely little discovery so often overlooked when this list is compiled.Still no comedies, though. Maybe they’ll get to that next year.BY NORMAN WILNER | NOW TORONTO Facebook Advertisement Whether it’s just coincidence or by design, there’s a definite sense of the guard changing in TIFF’s announcement of this year’s Canada’s Top Ten.In addition to the lack of a January showcase for the honourees – as announced last month, this year’s winning films will be given theatrical runs at the TIFF Bell Lightbox over the course of 2019 instead – the 2018 features list is more eclectic than most, embracing genre and experimental works while leaving off certain favourite sons of Canadian cinema.Seven of this year’s anointed features – six dramas and a documentary – focus on young people figuring themselves out. 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Unemployment increase to over 4 percent

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — The unemployment rate in Northeast B.C. moved above 4 percent in the second month of 2018.According to data released by Stats Canada on Friday, the unemployment rate in Northeast B.C. sat at 4.5 percent in February, from 3.8 percent in January.The region saw an addition 600 people added to the labour force in February while the number of people working increased by only 300 up to 38,000 people. Northeast B.C.’s unemployment remains lower than the rest of the province, which is currently at 4.9 percent.  The area with the lowest unemployment in the B.C. was in the Lower Mainland, where only 4.0 percent of the labour force was without work. The highest unemployment rate in B.C last month was recorded in the Thompson-Okanagan, where 7.5 percent of the labour force lacked a job.last_img read more

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Protesters across Russia rally against taking Moscow trash

MOSCOW — Protesters have rallied in more than a dozen Russian cities and towns against waste management plans that foresee Moscow sending its trash to poorer — and often pristine — northern areas.The protests Sunday ranged from a few dozen people up to 1,000 in regions from northwest Russia to Siberia. The biggest rallies were held in the Arkhangelsk region, north of Moscow on the White Sea, protesting plans by authorities to accept trash from Moscow.The first major trash protests took place outside Moscow last winter, when several children were hospitalized with poisoning linked to a local landfill. Authorities have vowed to introduce trash separation and tackle the issue of the overflowing, poisonous landfills that ring Moscow.Moscow has recently decided to ship some of its trash to Russia’s remote, pristine northwest.The Associated Press read more

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FCA invests big in Michigan as analysts question future of Brampton plant

Canada’s auto industry was left on the sidelines in a major spending commitment by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles this week, just as analysts were raising concerns about the future of the company’s Brampton, Ont. assembly plant.The US$4.5-billion commitment by FCA in Michigan, set to create 6,500 jobs, will build a new assembly plant and upgrade existing ones comes after intense political pressure in the U.S. to increase domestic manufacturing.  The investment, which will pave the way for a new three-row Jeep and other models as part of the company’s increasing focus on trucks and SUVs, highlighted the risks for the Brampton plant that produces passenger cars.“That doesn’t bode well,” said John Holmes, professor emeritus at Queen’s University, who co-wrote a report out this week on Canada’s auto industry.“The big challenge for Brampton has been that, yeah they got the new paint shop after the last round of bargaining with Unifor, but they’re building mainly sedans, and the market is really, really soft for cars.”The company and union have downplayed threats to the plant, but the report by Holmes and University of Guelph provost Charlotte Yates notes the plant needs new vehicles in growing segments to survive, even as capital commitments to Canada’s auto sector decline.Investment in Canada’s vehicle assembly sector averaged just $1.2 billion a year between 2010 and 2017, down from $2.3 billion a year in the previous decade, the report said, while since 2004, greenfield investment in Canada has totalled $1 billion compared with $15 billion in Mexico.There’s little sign the trend will reverse as the auto sector prepares for flatter growth in North America and a dip in demand in China. The big Detroit auto companies are increasingly shifting to higher-margin large vehicles to prepare, such as General Motors’ decision to shut its Oshawa, Ont. assembly plant that produces sedans by the end of the year.FCA has also shifted away from cars, discontinuing the Chrysler 200 and Dodge Dart in 2016, as it focuses on expanding its SUVs and trucks under the Jeep and Ram names as well as its higher-end Italian brands.  The company is predicted to phase out the Chrysler 300 produced at Brampton by 2021, said Joseph McCabe, president and CEO of AutoForecast Solutions LLC, though the plant should still get the next generation Dodge Charger and Challenger muscle cars.“We see that the Charger and Challenger remain the halo products in their car strategy, but they are literally the only thing left in Chrysler’s car strategy in North America.”There is a chance, though, that the company could cut the Chrysler car line-up, built on its LX rear-wheel drive platform, entirely, said McCabe.“It’s going to be literally an on and off approach. Either they stay in the car business and they need a place to put the LX and they’ll keep it there. Or, they get out of the car business and then all of the sudden, unfortunately, Brampton gets ramped up to the highest risk facility that Chrysler has in North America.”FCA spokeswoman LouAnn Gosselin said the company doesn’t discuss future plans and products, including the future of Brampton, but did say the company is committed to what it’s producing there.“The products built there have a very loyal and engaged customer base and remain an important part of our product portfolio in the United States and North America, and will continue to be,” she said by email.Unifor president Jerry Dias was also quick to assure that the company is committed to Canada, and the Brampton plant that employs some 3,348 unionized workers.“They are absolutely committed to their facilities here in Canada,” he said. “That plant has been on two shifts for years. It’s steady, they have a loyal customer base, and they’re not going anywhere.”He said he wouldn’t be surprised if the company announces another vehicle to complement the Charger and Challenger, noting that FCA has held off on spending part of the $325 million it committed to the plant’s paint shop until it figures out the next step for the plant.The company’s investment this week in the U.S., however, shows how important government support is for the industry, said Dias.“There’s no question when you have governments that are vocal and active and challenging the companies, you’re much more able to get results.”He said Canadian governments still need to step up.“The sound of their silence is deafening.”Holmes and Yates also called for more concerted government assistance for the sector in their report, especially targeted support for companies that commit to build green vehicles. FCA said its new investments in Michigan would allow for electrification of future Jeep vehicles.And while Canada didn’t get new investments in the latest news, any investment in the Great Lakes region is a win for a sector that is heavily integrated across the border, said Holmes.“Investments in new assembly capacity in Michigan, or Ohio, and Indiana probably holds out some potential for increased parts sales for Ontario firms,” said Holmes.The region as a whole has been eager for new investment as production has trended further south. Holmes noted in the report that of the 17 new North American assembly plants announced since 2006, 10 have gone to Mexico, seven to the southern United States and none to the Great Lakes region. FCA said in its announcement that the new assembly plant with be the first built in the city of Detroit in almost three decades.Ian Bickis, The Canadian Press read more

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Haiti UN to help local authorities fight rash of child kidnappings

“These barbarous acts surpass the limits of human comprehension,” UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) spokesperson Sophie Boutaud de la Combe told a news conference yesterday in Port-au-Prince, the capital. After a significant improvement during the first months of the year, five little girls and three little boys, most of them younger than four, have been kidnapped. The kidnapping have occurred at a time when MINUSTAH, set up in 2004 to help re-establish peace in the impoverished Caribbean country after an insurgency forced President Jean-Bertrand Aristide to go into exile, has been helping Haitian police crack down on armed criminal gangs, resulting in the capture of more than 400 gangsters since the beginning of the year. As a result of those successful operations one of the violence-ridden country’s most dangerous areas, the Cité Soleil neighbourhood in the capital, now has a mayor, officially installed on Wednesday. “This is a new page for Cité Soleil, but there is still a long way to go and MINUSTAH will continue to support the Haitian authorities in consolidating the situation in this neighbourhood,” Ms. Boutaud de la Combe said. MINUSTAH contingents, sometimes 600-strong, joined with Haitian police in sweeps through Cité Soleil in recent weeks, capturing gang leaders and their minions who had been terrorizing the neighbourhood and seizing caches of weapons and ammunition. They then restored badly needed health, medical and water services, rehabilitated schools that the gangs used as their headquarters, turned their lairs into social service centres and built sports fields and other facilities for a population that has suffered from years of gun violence and extortion. The mission is also helping local authorities recover from floods and landslides caused by heavy rains in various parts of the country. The UN World Food Programme (WFP) has already shipped in food for hundreds of victims in the northeast and is planning to help hundreds more in the north. 30 March 2007The United Nations peacekeeping mission in Haiti has vowed to help local authorities fight a resurgence in the kidnapping of young children, three of whom were found murdered in the past two weeks. read more

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UNs finances fragile with only 31 States having paid their 2008 dues

“The financial position of the UN remains fragile,” Mr. Ban writes in his latest report to the General Assembly, which reviews the world body’s financial situation as at 24 October.Funding for the UN budget, which is approved on a biennium basis, is derived from contributions from Member States. Their assessments are assessed based on a number of factors, including per capita incomes. The UN’s regular budget for the biennium 2008-2009 is nearly $4.2 billion.In addition to the regular budget, Member States are assessed for the costs of the UN international tribunals, peacekeeping, and the five-year, $1.9 billion renovation of the Organization’s New York Headquarters, known as the Capital Master Plan (CMP).“The financial indicators for 2008 are mixed,” says the Secretary-General, referring to the four main factors that determine the UN’s financial strength – assessments issued; unpaid assessed contributions; available cash resources; and the UN’s outstanding debt to Member States. “The position of the regular budget is uncertain given the current and projected cash situation, and the final outcome for 2008 will depend on action to be taken in the next few months by a few Member States.”As of 24 October, 133 Member States had paid their assessments to the UN regular budget in full, seven more than on 31 October last year. Of the $756 million that remained outstanding at 24 October for the regular budget, 94 per cent was owed by a single Member State and 6 per cent by the remaining Member States. “Clearly, the final picture for 2008 will largely depend on the action taken by those countries in the coming few weeks,” Mr. Ban says.The total amount outstanding for peacekeeping operations at 24 October is over $2.9 billion, approximately $198 million higher than at the end of 2007, but $575 million below the level at 31 October last year.As with the regular budget, the $2.9 billion in unpaid assessments is “highly concentrated,” according to the report, with over half of the total, 62 per cent, from just two Member States, and another 21 per cent from four others.Cash balances at the end of 2008 are projected to be higher than at the end of 2007 for the tribunals and the CMP, but lower for the regular budget and peacekeeping operations. “Further borrowing may be required from reserve accounts for the regular budget,” says Mr. Ban.The report adds that amounts owed to troop and equipment providers at 31 December are expected to be significantly lower than earlier projections, and some $134 million below the amount owed at 31 December last year. “While payments of troop and equipment obligations were broadly current for a number of missions, cash shortfalls mean that reimbursements have fallen behind the normal quarterly reimbursement process for four missions,” Mr. Ban notes. These are the UN Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO), the UN Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), the UN Observer Mission in Georgia (UNOMIG) and the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP).Mr. Ban pays tribute to the 31 Member States that had paid in full all assessments for the regular budget, the international tribunals, the peacekeeping operations and the CMP that were due and payable as at 24 October.They are Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burundi, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Georgia, Germany, Guatemala, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Mexico, Monaco, New Zealand, Niger, Norway, the Philippines, Moldova, Russia, Samoa, Singapore, Slovenia, South Africa, Sweden, Thailand and the United Kingdom. The Secretary-General encouraged other States to follow their example. “In order to maintain the financial health of the Organization, it remains as critical as ever for Member States to meet their financial obligations to the United Nations in full and on time,” he stressed. 6 November 2008Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has urged Member States to meet their financial obligations to the United Nations for 2008 in full and on time, warning of possible cash shortfalls if assessed contributions are not paid up in the remaining two months of this year. read more

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MR confirms North polls in 2013

However he said there were some outstanding issues which need to be resolved before elections can be held in teh area. President Mahinda Rajapaksa today confirmed that provincial council elections for the northern province will be held in September next year.He said this during a breakfast meeting with newspaper Editors at Temple Trees today, the President’s spokesman Bandula Jayasekera said. The President had earlier this month told The Hindu newspaper of his desire to hold elections in the north in September 2013. Among the issues, the President said, was the electoral list with several people displaced by the 30 year war still returning to Jaffna.

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Arundika appears before FCID on meeting with Udayanga

An arrest warrant has been issued against Weeratunga in the MIG deal case. (Colombo Gazette) Deputy Minister Arundika Fernando appeared before the Police Financial Crimes Investigations Division (FCID) to make a statement over his recent meeting with former Sri Lankan Ambassador to Russia, Udayanga Weeratunga.Fernando had earlier admitted he had met Weeratunga in Japan. Images posted on Weeratunga’s Facebook showed the two posing together.

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UNICEF calls on China India Russia and US to join Mine Ban

“Landmines are a deadly attraction for children, whose innate curiosity and need for play often lure them directly into harm’s way,” UNICEF Executive Director Carol Bellamy told the first World Summit on a Mine Free World being held this week at the headquarters of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) in Nairobi, Kenya. The millions of antipersonnel landmines and other explosive remnants of war across the globe pose a vicious threat to children, who are being injured, killed and orphaned by them long after wars are over, and she called on the four countries – among the largest holders of the weapon in the world – to also do more to assist those whose lives have been disrupted by mines. “Landmines, meant to be used against soldiers in war, are devastating the lives of children at peace,” Ms. Bellamy said. “Countries have a moral responsibility to ratify the Mine Ban Treaty and rid the world of these devastating weapons.” Since it went into force five years ago, 143 states have ratified the treaty, which prohibits signatories from using, stockpiling, producing or transferring landmines. “The cost of playing too close to a landmine is brutal,” Ms. Bellamy said, citing loss of limbs, blindness, deafness, and injuries to the genital area as some of damage landmines inflict on children. In part because they are physically smaller, children are more likely than adults to die from landmine injuries. Over 80 per cent of the 15,000 to 20,000 landmine victims each year are civilians, and at least one in five are children, according to the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL). Among the most contaminated countries are Iraq, Cambodia, Afghanistan, Colombia and Angola. UN Assistant Secretary-General Julia Taft, Director of the UN Development Programme (UNDP) Bureau for Conflict Prevention and Recovery, told the summit that countries like Afghanistan and Angola will never fully develop without the removal of landmines.“The landmine problem is a critical development issue,” she said. “The terrible human toll taken by these indiscriminate weapons is compounded by deep and lasting economic damage. Millions of mines still in the ground mean that there are hundreds of roads that cannot be travelled, thousands of acres of farmlands that cannot be tilled, and entire communities that are deprived of health care and education and essential investment.” An ambitious project to clear mines from a wildlife sanctuary in Angola, scene of a three-decade-long civil war, was launched at the summit today in a bid to give thousands of elephants and local villagers new hope. “The direct threat to people from these seeds of misery must be our first concern but it is clear that the environment, upon which local people depend for items such as food, shelter and natural medicines suffers, too,” UNEP Executive Director Klaus Toepfer said. The $1 million project, backed by the California-based Roots of Peace, initially aims to help restore an ancient elephant migration route linking Botswana with Zambia and Angola. It is part of a wider plan aimed at creating a vast trans-frontier conservation area which is being supported by the governments of Switzerland and the United States. Angola has over 2,200 known sites harbouring mines or unexploded ordnance. read more

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Womens Volleyball Ohio State upsets No 13 Purdue on the road in

OSU junior outside hitter Luisa Schirmer (5) takes a swing past Nittany Lion blockers during a game against Penn State on Nov. 12. Credit: Jenna Leinasars | Assistant News DirectorThe Ohio State women’s volleyball team (9-4, 2-0 Big Ten) upset No. 13 Purdue (11-2, 1-1 Big Ten) in a grueling four set match (25-19, 25-22, 32-34, 25-23) and handed the Boilermakers their first home defeat of the season at Holloway Gymnasium Saturday night.The Buckeyes began trailing behind the Boilermakers in the first set, but used a 5-0 run and took the lead 13-9. Ohio State rode blocks from outside hitter Ashley Wenz and middle blocker Lauren Witte to a 25-19 victory in the first set.The second set proved just as difficult as the first for Ohio State as Purdue took the early lead. But the Buckeyes were able to come back with five consecutive points to take a 20-19 lead. Outside hitter Luisa Schirmer put away eight kills of her own, helping the Buckeyes win 25-22.As each team took turns trailing behind the other through the third set that saw 16 tied scores, it was Purdue that took the longest set of the match 34-32, giving the Buckeyes their first loss.Ohio State was able to rebound in the fourth set, this time behind six kills from middle blocker Madison Smeathers. The winning point came from Schirmer once again, giving the Buckeyes the fourth set 25-23 and sealing the match for Ohio State.With a .600 hitting percentage, setter Taylor Hughes racked up 12 digs and 52 assists, only two shy from breaking her single-game record. Defensive specialist Hannah Gruensfelder was responsible for a match-high 15 digs, and Witte contributed four of her team’s 13 blocks. Schirmer was the star of the night, setting a personal single-game high with 25 kills.With two Big Ten wins under their belts, the Buckeyes will be hit the road again, this time to face No. 20 Michigan on Friday and Michigan State on Saturday. read more

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Tunisia beach massacre police shambolic and cowardly as officers fainted in terror

first_imgCheryl Stollery, whose was running away from the sound of gunfire with her husband John when he was gunned down, said: “I still believe questions have been left unanswered and responsibilities have not been accepted, so we are not able to rest or move on.”She added that “given the ever changing threats around the world and specifically those linked to holiday destinations, we unfortunately do not believe the Inquests heard will be the last to be brought before a British Coroner.”The families called upon tour operators to provide mandatory security information that informs tourist of any terrorist risks. In a statement outside the Royal Courts of Justice after the hearing, Kylie Hutchison, from law firm Irwin Mitchell,  which represents most of the victims’ families said: “It is now crucial that the whole travel industry learns from what happened in Sousse to reduce the risk of similar catastrophic incidents in the future.”The coroner sad that he would take submissions before deciding on whether he could make any recommendations to prevent further deaths. Tunisian hotel gunman Seifeddine Rezgui Tourists pass a plaque dedicated to victims on the beach of the Imperial Marhaba resort The terror cell which directed Rezgui to the five star hotel, just 18 months after he was radicalised, have yet to be arrested and the accomplice who dropped him at the scene has never been traced. Despite criticism of police and security at the hotel, Judge Loraine-Smith said little could have been done to prevent the attack as any measures such as unarmed guards or more CCTV would not have stopped a terrorist with a Kalashnikov. The only thing that would have made a “dramatic” difference to the bloodshed was armed guards stationed at the hotel, but this was not possible under Tunisian law, the coroner noted.  The attacks took place just three months after three militants stormed the Bardo Museum in the capital of Tunis and killed 21 people, mostly European tourists. Official Foreign Office travel advice warned of a high threat of terrorism but did not advise against travel to the country and many said they were completely unaware of the risks. The coroner found that despite TUI’s responsibilty to inform the tourists of the official advice, the only reference to it in their documentation was in relation to visas which were not required for Tunisia. A “crib sheet” for sales people to answer questions on the deteriorating security situation did not mention terrorism or where  to find the Foreign Office travel advice.  However, the coroner rejected a request by families to conclude that neglect by TUI or the owners of the Riu Imperial Marhaba Hotel contributed to the deaths, saying that the law limited the circumstances in which he could make such a ruling. He added: “The simple but tragic truth in this case is that a gunman armed with firearms, ammunition and grenades went to that hotel intending to kill as many tourists as he could.” Meanwhile, a boat driver picked up the weapon and attempted to stop the Rezgui, who had taken performance enhancing drugs, but did not know how to fire the weapon. Another police unit delayed arriving at the scene by collecting more weapons. “They had everything they required to confront the gunman and could have been at the scene within minutes,” Judge Loraine-Smith said. “The delay was deliberate and unjustifiable.”Only when the National Guard arrived was Rezgui shot dead. He added: “The response by police was at best shambolic and at worst cowardly. It was certainly ineffective until the death of the gunman.” Tourists pass a plaque dedicated to victims on the beach of the Imperial Marhaba resortCredit:ZOHRA BENSEMRA  Families of those killed wept as Judge Nicholas  Loraine-Smith, sitting as a coroner, ruled they had been “unlawfully killed” whilst holidaying in the Mediterranean resort in June 2015. Many are now preparing to sue holiday company TUI for damages. The inquest heard that police officers who could have been on the scene within three minutes  took 45. With the exception of two marine guards, no police entered the hotel grounds until the gunman had killed all 38 tourists, Judge Nicholas  Loraine-Smith noted. Of the two guards that did arrive at the scene, one had a grenade thrown at him by Rezgui and although it did not explode he “fainted through terror and panic, dropping his weapon in the process”.  When he regained consciousness he went and hid behind a parasol, whilst his colleague took his shirt off so no one would realise he was an officer.  The police response to the Tunisian beach massacre which killed 30 British tourists has been condemned as “shambolic and cowardly” by a coroner who revealed the only armed officer on the scene fainted in fear. In the deadliest assault on British citizens overseas since the 9/11 attacks, Seifeddine Rezgui walked through the Imperial Marhaba hotel systematically shooting dead innocent holidaymakers. But whilst some risked their lives to try and save others, the only armed officer on the scene fainted and abandoned his gun before hiding behind a parasol whilst other police units deliberately delayed their arrival.  Tunisian hotel gunman Seifeddine RezguiCredit: SITE Intelligence Group Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? 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NHS attempts to save £3 per flu jab have fuelled winter crisis

first_imgAttempts by health officials to cut costs on flu vaccines have fuelled the NHS winter crisis, senior doctors have warned.Health service documents suggest GPs were put under pressure to save around £3 per jab by buying vaccines which do not protect against one of the key strains in circulation.Dr Nick Scriven, president of the Society of Acute Medicine, said around half of flu cases being treated in hospital might have been avoided, if a more comprensive jab had been chosen.It comes amid rising levels of influenza across the country, which could reach epidemic levels if current trends continue.Half of cases in hospital are suffering from A strains, the most deadly of which is a strain dubbed “Aussie flu”, because it fuelled Australia’s worst flu season in two decades.But half are B strains – and the vast majority of cases this year involve a strain called B-Yamagata – known as “Japanese flu” – which is not covered by the vaccines most patients have received. Two types of vaccine were available to British doctors this winter.Quadrivalent vaccines, sold to the NHS for around £8, offer protection against two types of influenza A, including the strain A (H3N2), known as “Aussie flu,” and two types of B strain, including B-Yamagata. 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. “The advice from the national team is that there is minimal evidence of cost effectiveness. In the absence of robust evidence to prove superiority, the local CCGs and NHS England South (South East) are advising that prescribers should select the product with the lowest purchase price to the NHS and not purchase the quadrivalent vaccine for adults.”Documents published by Barking, Havering and Redbridge CCGs and North Hampshire CCG in spring 2017 also said NHS England’s regional outposts had advised against use of the more expensive vaccine.At least nine more CCGs ordered GPs to opt for the cheaper jab. The papers state: “The quadrivalent vaccine has a higher cost than the trivalent vaccine and this would add significant cost pressures to the prescribing budget across the South East.” The World Health Organisation says that the B-Yamagata strain made up 86 per cent of the B cases in circulation, while Public Health England’s laboratory reports show nine in 10 confirmed cases are B-Yamagata.Dr Scriven said “Not using the quadrivalent vaccine has increased the risk of flu admissions. Half of the flu cases we are getting are the A strain, half are the B. It’s probably about half the cases that are coming into hospital that may have been prevented.”Governing body papers, published in October by West Kent CCG, show NHS England South had emphasised the “cost effectiveness” of the vaccines in correspondence to GPs.center_img “Looking ahead to next flu season, the latest research will be factored in to help GPs decide the best vaccines for next year.”An MP told the Commons that 20 patients have died because of ambulance delays this winter, while a service refused to declare an emergency.Labour’s Clive Lewis said NHS managers wanted to move East of England Ambulance Service Trust to its highest state of emergency on 19 December, and to seek help from elsewhere, yet did not declare an incident until 31 December.”I’ve been informed during this period that 20 people died in incidents where ambulances arrived late,” he told the Commons. Guidance from Public Health England (PHE) published last month said that the quadrivalent vaccine was “likely to be cost effective compared with the trivalent vaccine” and suggested it should be considered for adults in at risk groups, such as pregnant women, and might benefit healthcare workers.However, vaccines were ordered far earlier in the year, ahead of distribution in September.An NHS England spokesman said PHE was responsible for advising on flu protection and CCGs were responsible for advice issued in their area.A spokesman said: “Young children, who are most likely to spread flu, are now given the quadrivalent vaccine, which is the most effective protection for them. But for older people, medical experts have advised GPs that it was unlikely to provide them with extra benefits, so GPs and pharmacists took account of this when many months ago they ordered their stocks for this flu season. Trivalent vaccines, which cost the NHS around £5, protect against both the main A strains, but only protect against a second B strain, which has proved to be rare this year.NHS England last night insisted it had issued no national advice to GPs about which vaccines to buy.But documents seen by Health Service Journal show that three clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) reported being told by NHS England’s regional outposts to “select the product with the lowest purchase price to the NHS and not purchase the quadrivalent vaccine for adults.” Stop the spread of flu germs. Use a tissue, bin used tissues and wash your hands thoroughly. Catch it. Bin it. Kill it. More info here: https://t.co/67SMIc3W0N pic.twitter.com/oiJUoYgjvb— NHS Choices (@NHSChoices) January 11, 2018last_img read more

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