How About a National Dumb Day?

first_imgLife is for the living! Life is a banquet and baby, am I starving! Life is a ball! Live fast. Die young. Be a sexy looking corpse! Life is cool!Celebrating life comes naturally to the human race — any genuine or manufactured excuse to cut loose and freak out. Holi, Diwali, Christmas, Pujas, Dussehra, Onam, Pongal (along with all the zillion other festival days) come with the territory, along with the birthdays, Bhai Dooj, Raksha Bandhan and anniversaries, and now the new-age kid’s latest “the day-we-first-met” day.Oldies may have been perplexed, amused or irritated at these exercises and dramabaazi, but they could well be headed for the ICU once they are swamped by the tsunami of special days dreamt up to keep the excitement and buzz ticking in our otherwise dreary, boring, dull or tension-filled and stress-driven lives.Forget Valentines Day, for lovers there’s now, a National Romance Day (Aug 11) as well as a National Bromance Day (Aug 14) to celebrate guy-bonding without… ahem… the other stuff. Quick on the heels of this pyaar-mohabbat is National Kiss & Make Up Day (Aug 25) to officially allow dumbos to go down on their knees, beg forgiveness and swear never to repeat all the ghastly stuff.Chances are after that sublime and weepy make-up, it will be time for some heavy-duty romancing and coochie-cooing after which — can a leopard change its spot? — problems will strike again. Sure enough, it’s time to celebrate, National Blame Someone Day (Aug 13). Once that is sorted out after several rounds of discussions, tears and hysteria, the guy can sweetly invite his companion to celebrate National Make Up Your Mind Day (Dec 31), to end the year on a decisive note. If that falls flat, no bother, there is the opportunity to celebrate National Panic Day (March 9). Once they recognize just how foolishly they have been behaving by letting childishness and ego drive their relationship, in embarrassingly halting, self-conscious fashion they can turn to National Awkward Moments Day (March 18)!Phew! That much for the interacting between the sexes. But hey, there are piles of other days too and the folks who invented them must have had a lot of time in his hands and been both mischevious and inventive. So we have celebratory days saluting National Mosquito Day (July 23), National Toilet Day (Nov 19), National Working Naked Day (Feb 1), National Read in the Bathtub Day (Feb 9), National Underwear Day (Aug 5), National Don’t Go to Work Unless It’s Fun Day (April 3), National Eat What You Want Day (May 11). Bizarre and weird, huh?“Not really,” says New York based drama student and Bollywood junkie Juhi Walia. The 21-year-old believes that all “these special days are really cool, giving a faceless date and day a special personality and spin allowing us to relate to it in whichever way we wish to.”Mumbai-based lawyer Girish Shah concurs. The 35-year-old admits that his parents’ generation find these days weird: “Can’t understand what the hell these days signify and mean. My uncle went ballistic when he heard that abroad there was actually a National Toilet Day and National Working Naked Day! Yeh Saale Phirang, pagal hai? Pagal khana mein band karna chahiye! (These bloody foreigners are mad. They should be locked up in a mental asylum.) Hey c’mon, I think they are fun. Don’t go nanga (naked) to work if you don’t want to, but chill yaar. Follow National Underwear Day if you’re the shy type!” Journalist Dolly Puri laughs. The 30-year-old Delhi-based young lady loves the “absurdity, wackiness, quirky, zany, madcap, bindas colour that it imparts to faceless days. National Mosquito Day? Saluting the lowly machhar (mosquito)! Kitna bada dil hai, na? Kamaal ka log hai (What a big heart, no? Amazing people) who thought it up.”Marketing Executive Kunal Sen, however, is disgusted by these “stupidly cony days! It’s the spasmodic working of unbalanced minds for chrissake! National Don’t Go to Work Unless It’s Fun Day: are we supposed to take it seriously?”Housewife Kavita Rastogi agrees “Pata nahin, anaab-shanaab, (Don’t know, any nonsense) anything jo dimag me aata hai, ghussa deta (whatever comes to mind, causes annoyance) to describe a day! National Panic Day? National Eat What You Want Day? They’ve lost it!”We live in a cool, informal and let-it-all-hang-out-environment. Nothing is sacrosanct and irreverence towards buttoned-down conventions and established norms is the new popular mantra. The special days jack-up the fun moments of our complex lives and add a dose of zaniness to amuse, irritate, sometimes shock. Along the way marketers, forever looking for a bait, wanna milk it. Time for a National Chor Machaye Shor (Thief Raps Up the Noise) Day! Related Itemslast_img read more

Vishwajit Rane accuses Congress of creating unwarranted panic over formalin in fish

first_imgGoa Health Minister Vishwajit Rane on Monday rubbished allegations of the Congress party, which on Sunday had alleged that formalin continues to be used to preserve fish which is sold in Goa’s markets. Mr. Rane told mediapersons at the State Secretariat on Monday that the Congress was trying to trigger a controversy out of a non-issue and questioned the authority of the Congress leaders who on Sunday, quoting a laboratory report, had alleged that fish in Goa was formalin-laced.“Yesterday’s [Sunday] press conference was rubbish. They are not scientists. Girish Chodankar is not a scientist, he is a teacher. He should go back to teaching because he has lost miserably,” an agitated Mr. Rane said. Goa Congress president Girish Chodankar on Sunday alleged that fish, especially mackerel which was sold in Goa’s markets, was found with 2 ppm traces of formalin. Mr. Rane accused the Congress of creating unwarranted panic. “What Congress is doing is only playing politics out of nothing. Let them [Congress] tell me which labs they tested, how they tested and the methodology,” he said.The controversy involving use of formalin in fish erupted in July last year after a team of State Food and Drugs Authority found traces of formalin in fish being sold in a South Goa fish market during an early morning raid after the fish arrived from some Southern States.After much outrage, the government had said that efforts would be taken to check fish which was imported into the State from Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.last_img read more

CWG 2014: Sanjita Khumukcham bags India’s first gold in Glasgow

first_imgSanjita Khumukcham in action during the 48kg weightlifting competition in GlasgowSanjita Khumukcham and Mirabai Chanu Saikhom bagged a gold and silver, respectively, in women’s 48kg weightlifting in a display of overwhelming domination to open India’s medal account on the opening day of the competition in the 20th Commonwealth Games on Thursday.Sanjita won with a total lift of 173kg (77+96) while Mirabai grabbed the silver with a cumulative effort of 170 (75+95) in the absence of other strong competitors.Nigerai’s Nkechi Opara was a distant third with 162 (70+92).Sanjita’s total of 173kg missed the Games record, held the name of 2010 CWG gold winner Augustina Nkem Nwaokolo (175kg effort) by two kilograms. Sanjita’s 77kg effort in snatch however equalled Nwaokolo’s Commonwealth Games record.The contest was all but over at the halfway snatch stage with 20-year-old Sanjita and 19-year-old Mirabai lifting 77kg and 75kg while Opara could come up with 70kg. The Nigerian’s attempt to give a fight to the Indian duo failed as she could not lift 75kg in her third attempt in snatch.Mirabai Chanu Saikhom in action during the 48kg weightlifting competition in GlasgowShe started on 72kg and then straightaway lifted 77kg, not dropping any weight in snatch. Mirabai failed in her first attempt to lift 75kg but achieved success in her third attempt.It was basically a contest between the two Manipuris in an event which India had dominated for long in the Commonwealth Games from the days of Kunjarani Devi.Kunjarani, now a women’s coach, was beside the two state mates on the platform, egging Sanjita and Mirabai in her vernacular language. India had won a silver and bronze in this category in 2010.advertisementThe clean and jerk contest went on almost similar lines with Sanjita and Mirabai taking the bar and the bell after most of their opponents had exhausted their attempts below the 90kg entry weight of the two Indians.last_img read more

Man booked for raping two minor girls

first_imgThane, Jun 12 (PTI) A man from neighbouring Nashik district has been booked for allegedly raping two minor girls here, police said today.The accused, whose identity has been withheld with police, had come to visit his relative in Wagle Estate area here on June 7 where he managed to befriend two girls in the neighbourhood, aged 9 and 6, according to a statement issued by police.He then managed to bring them home by alluring them to play mobile games and allegedly committed the act, it said.The duo, belonging to different families, returned to their house and confided in their parents. They narrated to them the entire incident, police said.Based on complaint lodged by the parents of the two victims, an offence was lodged last night against the accused under IPC section 376 (rape), relevant sections of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.The accused is currently at large and efforts are on to nab him, it said. PTI COR ARS AMS RDSlast_img read more

Vidal hints at Chile retirement

first_imgArturo Vidal ‘Closer and closer to leaving!’ – Angry Vidal hints at walking away from Chile Dejan Kalinic Last updated 2 years ago 11:47 9/1/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(1) Arturo Vidal Chile World Cup qualifying MARTIN BERNETTI Chile Chile v Paraguay Paraguay WC Qualification South America World Cup After his side were stunned by Paraguay in World Cup qualifying, the Bayern midfielder suggested he was nearing international retirement Chile star Arturo Vidal appeared to hint at international retirement after his nation’s shock loss to Paraguay in World Cup qualifying.Vidal scored a spectacular own goal as Chile slumped to a 3-0 loss in Santiago on Thursday, but they remained fourth in the CONMEBOL standings.A veteran of 96 internationals, the 30-year-old midfielder later suggested he could quit the national team, writing on Instagram that some would be happy with his departure. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! ‘I’m getting better’ – Can Man Utd flop Fred save his Old Trafford career? Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina “Now all those people in this country with bad blood should be happy,” Vidal wrote.”But don’t worry, I’m getting closer and closer to leaving!”Victor Caceres and Richard Ortiz struck in the second half for Paraguay, who sit sixth and just two points behind Chile and Argentina.Chile 28/1 to win the World CupDespite Vidal and Alexis Sanchez starting, Juan Antonio Pizzi’s men struggled to create chances in front of their home fans.Pizzi lamented his side’s performance, saying: “We must look for other ways.”If you don’t score, you will not have the chance to compete against the best teams.”Chile have a chance to respond when they visit Bolivia on Tuesday.last_img read more

Here Are The College Football Playoff Rankings After Week 11

first_imgA general view during the national anthem prior to the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship Game between the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Clemson Tigers.TAMPA, FL – JANUARY 09: A general view during the national anthem prior to the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship Game between the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Clemson Tigers at Raymond James Stadium on January 9, 2017 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Tim Bradbury/Getty Images)The third College Football Playoffs rankings are here. After 11 weeks of college football action, the College Football Playoff committee convened to determine the top 25 teams in the nation.Alabama once again entered the week as the unquestioned No. 1 team in the country, followed closely by Clemson. With the top four programs all winning this weekend, there is no change at the top.Notre Dame and Michigan round out the top four, while Georgia and Oklahoma retained their No. 5 and No. 6 spots respectively.There was, however, significant change after No. 10. With losses from Kentucky, NC State, Mississippi State and Boston College this weekend, several teams jumped up in the rankings.Take a look at the full top 25 below.Here’s the full #CFBPlayoff Top 2️⃣5️⃣ rankings for games played through November 10.Is your team in? ?— College Football Playoff (@CFBPlayoff) November 14, 2018Alabama remains in control of every poll and statistical analysis in college football and for good reason. With Tua Tagovailoa under center, the Crimson Tide offense is playing at a level we’ve never seen.Can anyone slow down the Tide? We’ll find out soon when Alabama plays Auburn to end the regular season and Georgia in the SEC title game.last_img read more

DNV GL to Class Stena Line’s New RoPax Ferries

first_imgzoom DNV GL has signed a contract to provide classification services for Stena Line’s new RoPax ferries to be built at AVIC Weihai Shipyard in China, as announced yesterday at Posidonia trade fair being held in Athens from June 6 to 10.Carl-Johan Hagman, Managing Director of Stena Line said that the company managed to develop a design that is 50 percent larger than today’s standard RoPax vessels.“We look forward to working with Stena Line, Deltamarin, AVIC and all the project partners to ensure the successful delivery of these highly efficient, future-ready vessels,” Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen, CEO of DNV GL – Maritime said.Intended for short international routes, the first four vessels are planned to be used within Stena Line’s route network in Northern Europe.The vessels will have the capacity to carry 1,000 people onboard (927 passengers and 73 crew), having 3,100 lane meters in a drive-through configuration.In addition, Stena Line’s new ferries will feature a length of 212 meters and a width of 27.8 meters.The ferries and their main engines will be ‘gas ready’, prepared to be fueled by either methanol or LNG, according to DNV GL.During the classification process, DNV GL said it will also carry out statutory work on behalf of the UK’s Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA).last_img read more

Putting a focus on youth during Black History Month

first_imgThe Black Arts and Innovation Expo takes place on Saturday, February 25, from 2 to 9 p.m. at York Mills Gallery (1885 Leslie St.) in Toronto.BY GILBERT NGABO – METRO Login/Register With: “If we don’t have youth in the driver’s seat, it’s going to be a shaky future,” Higgins  said. A Toronto project is flipping the narrative on how we celebrate Black History Month. Twitter The Black Arts and Innovation Expo aims to put more focus on what young people are doing to forge a better future in their communities. Torstar News Service file – Toronto photographer Adeyemi Adegbesan, whose Instagram account @SoTeeOh has more than 60,000 followers, will also be part of the expo. “We’re all versed on Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King and Miss Lou and Malcolm X, and that’s fantastic,” he said. “But for a lot of millennials it’s starting to sound like cliché, and we have to start looking at contemporary realities of black people.” Dalton Higgins, the creative director for the event, says it’s time to look beyond historic figures. LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Facebook Somali-born Canadian supermodel Yasmin Warsame is involved in humanitarian work in Toronto and Somalia. She’ll be one of the people making special appearances at the event. Higgins said the goal is to bridge a multigenerational gap by keeping the history of African Canadians alive, while making sure youth are taking charge of their own narrative going forward. The expo wants to reflect those realities by underscoring the work of young innovators who are making positive changes in their communities. Apart from panel discussions on various issues, music performances and art exhibitions, the event will also feature special appearances by former world champion hurdler Perdita Felicien, Somali-born supermodel Yasmin Warsame and poet laureate George Elliott Clarke among many others. Advertisement Created two years ago by Excelovate in conjunction with First Book Canada – two Canadian publishing companies with a focus on diversity – the expo is a platform for young talent in the local black communities to showcase their creative achievements. Advertisement The event will also feature the Lion’s Lair entrepreneurial competition, with the winner receiving $10,000 to help launch or expand a business. It’ll also offer 20 scholarships for African Canadian students to pursue post-secondary education in science, technology, engineering and math. Contributed – Bob Marley’s granddaughter Donisha Prendergast, who is an actress, model, dancer and poet, will make a special appearance at the expo. Advertisementlast_img read more

Chinas president meets European leaders on dealfilled trip

PARIS — Chinese President Xi Jinping is meeting with the leaders of France, Germany and the European Commission, as European countries seek to boost relations with China while also putting pressure over its trade practices.German Chancellor Angela Merkel and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker came to Paris to join Xi and French President Emmanuel Macron for Tuesday’s meeting. The leaders are notably preparing for a crucial EU-China summit.Tuesday’s meeting is a key moment in Xi’s European tour, which has involved huge business contracts, including one of the biggest deals ever for European plane maker Airbus.Xi also received the full honours of a formal reception in the French presidential palace Monday night.The EU is China’s biggest trade partner and wants to solidify that relationship.The Associated Press read more

Bird flu UN to send team to Viet Nam to assess risks

The team from the Geneva-based World Health Organization (WHO), which will travel to Viet Nam over the weekend, will work closely with the country’s Ministry of Health on plans to strengthen surveillance for detecting any further cases. Earlier this month WHO warned of the potential evolution of highly pathogenic avian influenza (H5N1) into a human pandemic after preliminary reports on the three new deaths, which followed an outbreak in South and East Asia earlier this year that infected 34 people, 23 of them fatally, and resulted in the deaths or culling of more than 100 million birds. Initial tests identified the latest virus as belonging to the H5 subtype and further testing has now confirmed that two of them are H5N1. WHO said it is particularly important to learn whether the H5N1 strain remains entirely of avian origin. The studies will determine whether it has mutated. The agency is concerned that continuing transmission of the virus to humans will give avian and human influenza viruses an opportunity to exchange genes, potentially giving rise to a new virus with pandemic potential. The most recent victim died on 6 August and no new cases have been identified since then. Arrangements are under way to send specimens from the new cases to a laboratory in the WHO Global Influenza Surveillance Network to perform gene sequencing and other analyses to yield information immediately relevant to assessment of the public health risk. Vietnamese health officials have called for close cooperation between WHO and the country’s two institutes equipped to test specimens for bird flu. This is expected to expedite the sharing of test results on any additional cases that might require investigation. read more

Sexual violence against women and children remains a major concern in Liberia

The report, the UN Mission in Liberia’s (UNMIL) fifth on human rights, says that six months after the country’s Rape Amendment Act came into effect, the cases listed clearly shows that far more effort is required by everyone working in the judicial system to address this reprehensible crime.“Sexual and gender-based violence, particularly against children, continued to be a major concern for UNMIL and all its partners working to uphold the fundamental rights of women and children,” the Mission said in a press release. The report, covering the period May to July 2006, was prepared with information from 25 UNMIL human rights monitors stationed in all Liberia’s 15 counties and, as well as providing an overview of the most important trends, it focuses in particular on challenges facing the judicial system as the country rebuilds after 14 years of conflict.“Circuit Courts in five counties were not operational during the May Term of Court, resulting in violations of the Constitutional and the human rights of both victims and suspects,” said Chief of the Human Rights and Protection Section, Dorota Gierycz, in launching the report.Further, Ms. Gierycz said that where courts were operational, only a fraction of the cases listed for trial were heard. Also, inefficient investigation, prosecution and hearings led to prolonged pre-trial detention in many cases and frequently, suspects were released from detention without facing trial.A positive development has been the submission of a joint report by UNMIL and the Government of Liberia Rule of Law Task Force to President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf outlining a programme to strengthen the judicial sector. As part of this, UNMIL and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) supported a three-day workshop jointly organized by the Ministry of Justice, to consider best practices to strengthen the Rule of Law.Also related to law and order, the head of UNMIL has called for an end to the illegal rubber trade, stressing the importance of the crop in helping the country rebuild.“Illegal tapping and sale of rubber remains a problem and we need to have a proper certification or licensing for dealers and traders. Regulation of the rubber industry needs to be strengthened. We must stop the trade in illegal rubber because it is one of the most important sources of income and growth for Liberia,” said Alan Doss, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Liberia.Mr. Doss made his remarks during a trip to the Guthrie Rubber Plantation, about 50 kilometres west of the capital, Monrovia, where he highlighted the progress made since UNMIL supported the Government in taking control of the plant in August.“The peace process is not just stopping war. It is also about rebuilding the economy and creating jobs… we must ensure that nobody seizes this plantation again and harvests rubber illegally.”In another development, Mr. Doss recently joined members of the Liberian police force, and UN military and police officers on a night patrol in some parts of the capital, as part of increased patrolling to curb the reported increase in violent crime in Monrovia. read more

SaskEnergy nets income of 111 million looks to spend 225 million on

by The Canadian Press Posted Jul 12, 2016 3:46 pm MDT Last Updated Jul 12, 2016 at 4:49 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email SaskEnergy nets income of $111 million, looks to spend $225 million on capital REGINA – The head of SaskEnergy says the utility needs to spend about $225 million a year on capital projects that include moving facilities on the outskirts of Regina and Saskatoon.SaskEnergy president and CEO Doug Kelln says about $100 million of that is needed to maintain infrastructure, while some will be spent relocating stations as Regina and Saskatoon expand.SaskEnergy’s annual financial report shows net income of $111 million for the fiscal year that ended in March.The report also notes that more than $5 million was spent on remediation efforts in communities with slope movement.An explosion destroyed one home and seriously damaged several others in Regina Beach in December 2014 after flooding caused the ground to shift and led to a natural gas leak.SaskEnergy has applied to lower what it charges customers for natural gas to $3.65 a gigajoule from $4.30 — which would be the lowest commodity rate in 16 years. read more

Most actively traded companies on the TSX

Some of the most active companies traded Monday on the Toronto Stock Exchange:Toronto Stock Exchange (15,052.03, down 3.96 points):Polaris Materials Corp. (TSX:PLS). Building Materials. Up $1.74, or 181.25 per cent, to $2.70 on 7.5 million shares.Hydro One Ltd. Instalment Receipts (TSX:H.IR). Utilities. Up 35 cents, or 0.92 per cent, to $38.25 on 4.5 million shares.Trevali Mining Corp. (TSX:TV). Miner. Up four cents, or 2.82 per cent, to $1.46 on 4.05 million shares.Yamana Gold Inc. (TSX:YRI). Miner. Up 19 cents, or 5.54 per cent, to $3.62 on 3.8 million shares.Baytex Energy Corp. (TSX:BTE). Oil and gas. Down 13 cents, or 4.23 per cent, to $2.94 on 3.8 million shares.Lundin Mining Corp. (TSX:LUN). Miner. Up 51 cents, or 5.49 per cent, to $9.80 on 3.7 million shares.Companies reporting major news:Toromont Industries Ltd. (TSX:TIH). Industrials. Up $4.97, or 11.07 per cent, to $49.87 on 1.4 million shares. The industrial equipment company has a friendly deal to buy the Quebec-based Hewitt Group for a combination of cash and shares worth about $1.02 billion. by The Canadian Press Posted Aug 28, 2017 2:43 pm MDT Last Updated Aug 28, 2017 at 3:20 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Most actively traded companies on the TSX read more

South Sudan on verge of fragmenting UN officials warn Security Council

‹ › Civilians flee the violence that erupted in the Protection of Civilians site in Malakal, South Sudan. Photo: UNMISS/Nyang Touch In response to shifting conflict dynamics, Mr. Soumaré said the Mission has adopted a “more agile force posture” to protect civilians affected by violence. UNMISS is focusing on projecting physical presence away from its bases in Bentiu, Bor, Juba, Malakal and Wau through long-duration patrols and temporary operating bases in areas where insecurity is high.This includes the establishment of temporary operating bases in Leer as well as in Mundri, which, along with the deployment of an additional company to Yambio, has strengthened the Mission’s presence in western Equatoria.Humanitarian ChallengesAs violence continues, humanitarian needs are also increasing, the Special Representative said. An estimated 6.1 million people across South Sudan are in urgent need of assistance as a result of interlocking threats, including armed conflict and inter-communal violence, economic decline, disease and climactic shocks. Insecurity and poor road conditions are also negatively impacting the UN’s capability to preposition humanitarian supplies before roads are made impassable by the coming rainy season.Despite these urgent needs, the Mission and humanitarian partners continue to face significant constraints on their operations, including regular instances in which personnel are denied freedom of movement, as well as other violations of the Mission’s Status of Forces Agreement with the Government. These incidents are regularly reported to the Council and to Government counterparts, he noted.“It is of critical importance that the parties move ahead with the formation of the Transitional Government of National Unity,” Mr. Soumaré emphasized. “Nonetheless, we must remember that its formation is but the first of many inter-locking steps forward towards fully implementing the peace agreement.” Once the transitional government is formed, it will need to be empowered to operationalize the institutions of transition, the Special Representative also said.“Only the full implementation of the peace agreement, with clear peace dividends for the people of South Sudan, will help bring stability to the country,” he concluded.Human RightsAlso briefing the Council, Ivan Šimonović, Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, noted that the initial signing of the peace agreement in August had been met with optimism that the parties to the conflict would abide by their declaration of a permanent ceasefire and halt their attacks on the civilian population. “However, the reconciliatory rhetoric propagated by Government and opposition actors has deflected from the fact that the parties to the conflict continue to attack, kill, abduct, rape, arbitrarily detain, and forcefully displace civilians, and pillage and destroy their property,” Mr. Šimonovic stressed.Providing details of attacks on civilians since the signing of the peace agreement, the UN official lamented that new theatres of violence are emerging in areas such as the Equatorias, which had previously been little affected by direct hostilities. He also underscored that an increasing number of armed defence groups had emerged in response to the Government’s “highly militarized approach” to addressing insecurity. “With the diffusion of armed conflict in all parts of the country, and the creation of local armed groups fighting against Government troops, South Sudan faces the risk of fragmentation and related human rights violations,” he said. While conflict-related violence remains a serious concern, Mr. Šimonović emphasized that human rights are under attack throughout the country. As UNMISS recently documented in a report, the space for freedom of expression and dissent has narrowed considerably, with various accounts of deliberately silencing dissenting voices including those of human rights defenders and journalists. However, Mr. Šimonović stressed, no action has been taken as of yet. “Perpetrators of these violations have not been held accountable,” he said. “South Sudan has a long history of forgiveness and amnesties, even for the most serious crimes. To break this longstanding cycle of impunity, and to prevent future violations of international human rights law, we must ensure that the transitional justice mechanisms outlined in the peace agreement are implemented.”Among his recommendations, Mr. Šimonović urged the parties to the conflict to immediately cease all violations of international and humanitarian law and human rights abuses, and implement the peace agreement “in letter and spirit in a timely manner.” He also urged the Security Council and regional leaders to continue engaging the parties to conflict in this regard.“It cannot be tolerated that leaders make declarations in Juba, while the hostilities and attacks on the civilian population continue and intensify across the country. Not only is South Sudan on the verge of fragmenting, but the conflict seriously threatens stability in the entire region,” he said.“The United Nations need to extend all necessary support to the African Union and the Transitional Government of National Unity, once established, to ensure that the cycle of impunity is broken and justice is served,” he concluded. In a statement to the press, the Council condemned “in the strongest terms” violence committed by elements of the Shilluk and Dinka communities, which erupted in the protection of civilians site in Malakal managed by the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), on February 17 and which continued into yesterday, resulting in more than 18 deaths and 50 injuries.The members of the Council said they were particularly alarmed by credible reports of armed men in Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) un uniforms entering the UNMISS camp and firing on civilians, and the looting and burning of tents.Strongly condemning “all attacks and provocations against civilians and the United Nations by armed actors, including SPLA soldiers,” the Council reminded all parties, including Government security forces, of the civilian character of the protection of civilian sites in South Sudan. In its statement, the Council went to call for calm by all sides and to refrain from additional fighting, acts of violence, and further provocations. The 15-member body also called on the Government “to swiftly investigate this attack, with the assistance of UNMISS, and bring the perpetrators to justice. “It is the responsibility of the Government […] to hold those responsible for the attack accountable,” emphasized the Council. The Security Council stressed that attacks against civilians and UN premises may constitute war crimes, and those involved could be potentially subject to sanctions as authorized under its resolution 2206 (2015) for actions that threaten the peace, security or stability of South Sudan.In a scheduled briefing that preceded the Council’s statement, two senior UN officials urged the body and regional leaders to continue engaging all parties involved in the longstanding conflict to attain a sustainable peace.Situation on the GroundMoustapha Soumaré, Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General for South Sudan and deputy UNMISS chief reiterated the Mission’s grave concern over the outbreak of violence at the Malakal site and noted that UNMISS uniformed personnel are undertaking robust measures to strengthen physical security within and around the site, while humanitarian partners are working to resume delivery of essential services.“Meanwhile, we are engaged at all levels in the Government, the opposition and the national security forces, as well as within the communities themselves, to address the underlying factors and avoid a resumption of violence,” Mr. Soumaré said. Violence continues in many regions of the country, including in areas that had previously been relatively calm, he said. Of particular concern is the deteriorating security situation in Western Bahr E1 Ghazal, particularly around Wau, which has also escalated over the past 48 hours. read more

G4S sees growth in global mining division

first_imgInternational secure outsourcing group G4S has announced that its mining division saw annualised growth increase of over 50% in 2012. G4S Mining says it secured £85 million of new business across the globe, with a large proportion coming from the America’s and Europe regions (71% and 50% regional annualised growth). It’s African and AME (Asia and Middle-East) territories also maintained strong growth at 35% and 25% respectively. As part of a strategic review at the beginning of 2012, the company introduced a new programme aiming to focus more on utilising its global reach, enabling it to provide clients with solutions that drive out complexity and cost by addressing and optimising security standards. G4S Mining introduced regional mining teams in Canada, USA, LATAM, Asia/Middle East, Africa and the UK, and worked with the broader G4S Technology division to develop technologies and processes that enabled more efficient business operations.The company now serves over 350 customers, in 58 countries across the six continents, at over 365 sites. G4S says it provides over 100 service offerings across the mining project lifecycle, including travel risk management, risk consultancy services, remote site facilities management, technical IT services, electronic security solutions, manned security guarding and HSE support services and secure transportation.Andrew Hames, director, G4S Global Mining, said: “We are very proud of how we have secured business performance for our clients in 2012; however, we only see this as the beginning of what will be a very positive period for us in this sector. We are in a very unique position as our broad global footprint enables us to provide globally-shared best practise and in-country resources to deliver a service that customers need. We are able to use this expertise and reach to ensure resilience of client operations – mitigate risk, prevent loss, and protect employees, assets and reputation.”last_img read more

Atlas Copco launches new Swellex Spartan rockbolt line at CIM

first_imgAs mine and tunnel safety requirements have become more stringent, Atlas Copco sayst that its Swellex rock bolt system has become “a preferred alternative, offering an environmentally safe solution with high efficiency and immediate support.” Now the group has released the Swellex Spartan at CIM in Toronto, Canada, which it claims is “the industry’s most rigorously tested rock bolt, with capacity and elongation suited to your project’s needs.” Like all bolts in the Swellex system, the Swellex Spartan is easy to install for greater productivity, and provides friction anchoring and mechanical interlocking for greater safety. Spartan bolts also have high quality corrosion resistance for maximum longevity.“There’s different environments in mining and tunneling. There are cases where the rock mass transfers very little energy into the bolt. And in such cases there is no need for a rock bolt that absorbs high energy, you just need a rock bolt that can reach peak load without having necessarily to give a lot of elongation in energy absorbency. The Spartan Line has been engineered for these environments,” says Daniel Misiano, Vice President Marketing – Consumables. “The Spartan line has been engineered for a specific environment to maximize cost effectiveness and profitability. It is being manufactured using the same stringent manufacturing process, the same quality control as other Swellex rock bolts that we offer today.”last_img read more

23 May the big day for wannabe councillors and MEPS

first_imgWANNABE COUNCILLORS AND MEPs will have to battle it out against the incumbents – and each other – for the next four months and a day.The government announced today that local and European Parliament elections will be held together on Friday, 23 May.Polling hours will be between 7am and 10pm on that day. Citizenship is not a requirement for voting in the local elections so anybody over the age of 18 can vote in the area they normally reside.A total of 949 members of 31 local authorities will be chosen in 137 local electoral areas.And just 11 MEPs will be elected in the European elections.Currently, there are 3.25 million local government and European electors on the register but a new register will be published next month.Minister Phil Hogan urged those eligible to vote but not on the register to apply before 6 May.Poll: Do you plan to vote in the local elections?Explainer: What’s happening with electricity pylons and why is it such a big issue?last_img read more

Le chimpanzé au menu du léopard en Tanzanie

first_imgLe chimpanzé au menu du léopard en Tanzanie ? Des chercheurs japonais travaillant dans un parc national tanzanien ont relevé, dans des excréments de léopard, des restes de chimpanzé adulte : le félin s’est-il comporté en charognard devant un singe déjà mort, ou a-t-il capturé lui-même le primate ?Parc national des monts Mahale, en Tanzanie : 1.613 kilomètres carrés de brousse et de forêt tropicale. Particularité : c’est l’une des rares régions du pays où se côtoient – si l’on peut dire – léopards et chimpanzés – lesquels, d’après les recensements, y atteindraient un effectif d’environ 800 individus. À lire aussiMaladie de Charcot : symptômes, causes, traitement, où en est on ?C’est là qu’en été 2012, l’équipe de Nobuko Nakazawa, de l’Université de Kyoto (Japon), a étudié la biologie et l’écologie des grands félins tachetés, et fait une découverte inusitée. En récoltant et en examinant des déjections de léopard pour mieux connaître le régime alimentaire de cette espèce, les chercheurs y ont découvert des phalanges et des rotules de chimpanzé, plus précisément d’une femelle adulte de la sous-espèce Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii, comme l’a établi l’analyse génétique. Les scientifiques ignorent toutefois si le félin s’est nourri sur la dépouille d’un grand singe trouvé mort, ou s’il l’a tué lui-même, expliquent-ils dans la revue Journal of Human Evolution. En effet, le peu d’informations récoltées par les auteurs ne leur permet pas de confirmer l’une ou l’autre des hypothèses.D’autres indices à examiner Les rares observations de confrontations entre les deux espèces montrent généralement que les chimpanzés, faisant front en commun et avec force démonstrations d’agressivité, savent décourager toute tentative d’agression du léopard. Cependant, la nouvelle découverte incite les chercheurs à réexaminer certaines blessures décelées ces dernières années sur trois chimpanzés du parc de Mahale. Des blessures qui, peut-être, pourraient être la signature du grand félin. Le 29 mai 2013 à 10:21 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

Clark Talks Podcast looks at state politics 2017 grads

first_imgThis week, Clark Talks, The Columbian’s podcast, covers education from the state Capitol to the Class of 2017.The podcast begins with the Olympia update, during which state political reporter Lauren Dake talks to Rep. Paul Harris, R-Vancouver, about the ongoing education funding negotiations in the statehouse. Lawmakers are currently in a second special legislative session with the goal of ending the state’s chronic underfunding of public schools.Next, host Dameon Pesanti and small cities reporter Adam Littman introduce a compilation of interviews with five graduating high school seniors. Littman and reporter Katie Gillespie met the students while creating The Columbian’s annual graduation issue. The students chosen this year all displayed some form of activism or advocacy outside the classroom on issues relating to immigration, bullying, student resources and more.The story will run in Sunday’s paper, with a follow-up in Monday’s paper listing all the upcoming graduation ceremonies, organized by Kay Richardson.The episode wraps up with a discussion with Ashley Swanson, who gives a taste of what’s in store for the upcoming weekend.Some of the events are:• Big Paddle Festival, 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday. Registration is required for the interpretive paddles. Port of Ridgefield, 5 West Mill St., Ridgefield; free, $5 to $25 for interpretive paddle.• Hockinson Fun Days, 6 to 9 p.m. Friday; 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, parade at noon Saturday. Hockinson High School, 16819 N.E. 159th St., Brush Prairie; free, pancake breakfast: $5 per person, $15 per family. 360-448-6450 or read more

BSO deputy suspended accused of shoplifting at Walmart

first_imgCORAL SPRINGS, FLA. (WSVN) – The Broward Sheriff’s Office suspended a deputy facing charges of fraud, Monday.Deputy Dean Korenic allegedly shoplifted seven times from the Coral Ridge and Turtle Run Wal-Marts in Coral Springs, according to officials.Officials said Korenic shoplifted while in uniform one time and was driving in his marked patrol car, three other times.Korenic has since bonded out of jail.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more