VANCOUVER – People with spinal cord injuries now have a set of exercise guidelines for maintaining heart health to match those offered to the general population decades ago.Kathleen Martin Ginis, a researcher at the University of British Columbia’s Okanagan campus, led an international committee that recommends 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous intensity aerobic exercise, three times a week, for people with spinal cord injuries.That’s compared with 150 minutes of cardiovascular exercise every week for others, as recommended by the World Health Organization.Martin Ginis said the new guidelines are in addition to recommendations she helped come up with in 2011 for people with spinal cord injuries through her work at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont.She will present her latest research on Thursday in Dublin at the annual meeting of the International Spinal Cord Society.Martin Ginis worked with a team that included participants from Canada, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Sweden, Italy and the United States. Their research will be published this week in the journal Spinal Cord.Besides her own work, the team analyzed 211 studies examining the effects exercise on cardiorespiratory fitness, muscle strength, bone health, body composition and cardiovascular risk factors for people with spinal cord injuries.That population faces significant barriers when it comes to exercise, starting with transportation if they aim to get to a gym, let alone trying to navigate their wheelchairs on sidewalks without ramps, Martin Ginis said in an interview from Dublin.Gyms often exclude people with disabilities, but could accommodate them with adaptable equipment and knowledgeable staff, she said.“If there are ways to get into a facility there are ways to adapt standard exercise equipment for people with spinal cord injuries, at least for strength training,” Martin Ginis said.“We’ve got lots of anecdotal accounts of people with spinal cord injuries being turned away because the people at the gyms or the recreation centres don’t know what to do with them.”People with disabilities often have to pay extra if they come with an assistant to help them with equipment, she said.Martin Ginis called the Abilities Centre in Whitby, Ont., the “gold standard” of gyms because of its inclusive programming that includes arm ergometers, or so-called arm bikes, included in spin classes.“It means they don’t have to request for someone to pull an arm ergometer in and make a big fuss out of it. The aerobics classes are integrated classes so people with all abilities will take an exercise class together with the same instructor,” she said.The centre was a special project of former Conservative finance minister Jim Flaherty, whose son John had health challenges after contracting encephalitis as an infant.Martin Ginis said about six gyms in Canada are dedicated to people with spinal cord injuries, in cities including Vancouver, Calgary, Hamilton and St. Catharines, Ont., and that most are affiliated with universities.Brad Skeats, 43, works out at the Physical Activity Research Centre gym, a Vancouver facility led by researchers at the International Collaboration On Repair Discoveries, or ICORD.His spinal cord was injured 20 years ago when he worked in a sporting goods store and a co-worker ran up from behind and tried to piggy back himself for fun.“It was a pretty crazy, flukey accident. He landed on me the wrong way and that snapped my neck.”Skeats, who went on to compete in wheelchair racing from 2000 to 2010, has a personal trainer and works out three times a week at the dedicated gym that was built in 2012.Finding accessible space was a big challenge before that, even for someone with a sports background, he said.Jasmin Ma, who collects data at the ICORD gym as a PhD student and is a personal trainer for people with spinal cord injuries, said some of her clients are surprised to hear they would be able to do aerobic exercise.“There are a lot of fabulous ways you can do an exercise. It’s just a matter of finding out how you can do it for your specific situation.”She said people who may not have grip strength, for example, could use grip-resistant gloves or “active hands.”— Follow @CamilleBains1 on Twitter.
NIPAWIN, Sask. — A Saskatchewan man accused of threatening to shoot Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and blow up the Parliament Buildings has been acquitted.David Petersen, who is 53, faced a charge of uttering threats over the phone to a government worker on Feb. 12.Judge Hugh Harradence told Nipawin provincial court on Tuesday that he had reasonable doubt Petersen uttered the threats with intention.Harradence said he believed the employee who took the call was sincere in trying to recall the conversation, but there was no recording or notes taken immediately after the call.Petersen, who elected to defend himself, argued the whole case stemmed from a foolish conversation with someone he didn’t know.Last March, he intended to plead guilty to the charges to get them out of the way.But Judge Inez Cardinal wouldn’t accept Petersen’s plea after he said he didn’t believe he was guilty.“I was scared as hell and I didn’t know what to expect,” Petersen said outside court Tuesday about the acquittal.“I wasn’t trying to guess ahead of anything, but I’m not surprised.”Paul Sveinson, a collection content officer for the Canada Revenue Agency, testified last week that he and Petersen talked about 10 times between October 2018 and the Feb. 12 call. He said Petersen sounded depressed and distraught during the last call and brought up Trudeau’s name after no previous mentions of politics.Sveinson recalled Petersen’s exact words as being: “Between you and me, I’d like to take a shot at Trudeau” and “I don’t want to be the guy that goes and blows up Parliament.”Sveinson added the sad, quick demeanour of Petersen’s voice caused him concern for Petersen’s well-being, which resulted in Sveinson contacting a department manager.The employee also testified the call had initially been about Petersen’s life insurance and that caused Sveinson to believe it was a suicide call.Harradence said there was a hole in the evidence about how Trudeau and the Parliament Buildings came into conversation. “Context is critical,” Harradence said.The trial also saw video of Const. Tanner Gillies from the Saskatchewan National Security Enforcement Section interviewing Petersen.Petersen told Gillies during the interview the “take a shot” comment meant he would punch Trudeau in the nose if he was in front of him, not shoot him. He said he wouldn’t shoot Trudeau due to a moral belief that killing another human is wrong.Gillies said in court that while Petersen appeared stressed and was sober, he didn’t think he was a threat to Trudeau. (CJVR)The Canadian Press
SEATTLE — Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz has faced a rocky reception since he announced last weekend that he’s considering an independent presidential bid – and it’s not clear his welcome will be any warmer when he brings his book tour to his hometown of Seattle on Thursday.At least two ardent constituencies are planning to protest outside the theatre where Schultz is scheduled to speak: Democrats who fret his candidacy would hand President Donald Trump another term, and green-and-gold-bedecked basketball fans who haven’t forgiven him for selling the Seattle SuperSonics to a group that moved the team to Oklahoma City more than a decade ago.“Howard and his public relations people may not be thinking clearly about what the reception is going to be,” said Adam Brown, who produced “Sonicsgate,” a 2009 documentary about the team’s sale. “It’s going to be a lot of Sonics fans reminding him how he betrayed the city.”The 65-year-old billionaire and Democratic donor, who stepped down as Starbucks chairman last June, has been on a tour of talk shows and news interviews the past few days, coinciding with the release of his latest book, “From the Ground Up: A Journey to Reimagine the Promise of America.”He said he doesn’t intend to decide whether to run for president for several months, but the reaction from prominent Democrats has been swift. The party chairwoman in Washington state, top advisers to former President Barack Obama and the most powerful political action committee in Democratic politics are among those who have criticized him, saying an independent bid would likely split the opposition to Trump and make his re-election more likely.At an appearance in Arizona on Wednesday he said he would “not do anything to be a so-called spoiler” who hands the 2020 race to Trump.In Seattle, where 92 per cent of voters cast ballots against Trump in 2016, helping get him re-elected might be even less popular than selling off a beloved sports franchise.Chris Petzold, a Democratic activist from the Seattle suburb of Issaquah, organized the protest Thursday. She said she remains sad about the Sonics departure, but the protest isn’t about that.“Now is not the time to risk getting another four years with Donald Trump as president,” Petzold said. “If you want to fix it, why not fix it from within the system, instead of being your arrogant billionaire self? He’s just buying his way into this.”Schultz has repeatedly said he doesn’t want to be responsible for Trump’s re-election, but that he believes there is a way to unite a significant portion of the public that identifies with neither major party.In an opinion piece published Wednesday in The Seattle Times, Schultz acknowledged that he has a “complicated” relationship with Seattle, a city he first fell in love with during a visit to Pike Place Market in 1981. It’s the city where he grew a small coffee-roasting company into an inescapable global chain, where he and his wife raised their two children, and where the couple still lives.Along the way he made Starbucks one of the first U.S. companies to offer stock options and health insurance even to part-time employees; more recently, it partnered with Arizona State University to cover tuition for workers who want to earn their bachelor’s degrees online.In 2001, Schultz led a group of investors in buying the Sonics and the WNBA’s Seattle Storm for $200 million. Due partly to an unfavourable lease deal and the small size of KeyArena, where the team played, the Sonics were losing millions of dollars a year.After being rebuffed by the Legislature in his efforts to win public funding to remodel the venue, Schultz sold the team for $350 million to the group that moved it to Oklahoma City and renamed it the Thunder. The Sonics were Seattle’s oldest professional sports franchise and the first Seattle team to win a national title since the Seattle Metropolitans won hockey’s Stanley Cup in 1917.In his Seattle Times piece, Schultz apologized.“I was so focused on getting myself and others out of a money-losing situation that I made a bad choice and failed to follow a principle that helped me grow Starbucks, which is to try to balance profit with humanity,” he wrote. “Selling the Sonics is the biggest regret of my professional life. … I do not expect my actions to be forgiven or forgotten.”Some Sonics fans considered the apology long overdue — not to mention suspect, given that it coincided with the announcement of his presidential musings.Schultz’s politics aren’t necessarily going to win him many fans in his liberal hometown, either.In Seattle, voters rarely see a tax increase they don’t like; Schultz has called for entitlement reform and branded the calls of Sen. Elizabeth Warren and other Democrats for big tax increases on the ultra-rich “ridiculous.”Seattle was one of the first U.S. cities to approve a $15-an-hour minimum wage; Schultz opposed it, fearing it would cost jobs. The law remains popular, and economists say it has raised pay without any real impact on employment.Schultz’s consideration of a presidential run even drew a rebuke from a fellow Seattle billionaire, early Amazon investor and outspoken liberal Nick Hanauer.“What Howard calls ‘centrism’ is just trickle-down economics_tax cuts for the rich, de-regulation for the powerful, and wage suppression for everyone else,” Hanauer tweeted.Gene Johnson, The Associated Press
Mr. Ramos-Horta is in a serious condition in hospital in Australia after earlier undergoing surgery following the shooting at his home. Prime Minister Xanana Gusmão was not injured in a separate attack on his motorcade, but the fugitive leader Alfredo Reinado was killed in fighting, according to the UN Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT).In a statement read out by Ambassador Ricardo Alberto Arias of Panama, which holds the rotating presidency of the 15-member panel, Council members condemned both attacks “on the legitimate institutions of Timor-Leste.“The Security Council calls on the Government of Timor-Leste to bring to justice those responsible for this heinous act, and urges all parties in Timor-Leste to cooperate actively with the authorities.”The presidential statement also stressed that all Timorese should exercise restraint and maintain stability in the weeks ahead and urged the country’s political parties to resolve any disputes they have through political and peaceful means only.In addition, it endorsed the Government’s efforts to strengthen democracy and ensure public security and stability.This morning’s attacks were also deplored by Mr. Ban’s spokesperson in a statement and by Finn Reske-Nielsen, his Acting Special Representative to the country. UN Police in Timor-Leste remain on high alert and are coordinating with Timorese authorities and with the International Security Forces (ISF).Mr. Reinado had been the target of investigations by the UN Independent Special Commission of Inquiry for Timor-Leste, set up to examine the deadly violence that erupted in the tiny nation in April-May 2006. It found the major and his group were reasonably suspected of committing crimes during the fighting.The 2006 crisis, attributed in part to differences between Timor-Leste’s eastern and western regions, began in April with the firing of 600 striking soldiers, a third of the overall armed forces. Ensuing violence claimed at least 37 lives and drive 155,000 people, or about 15 per cent of the total population, from their homes. The Security Council created UNMIT in August that year to help restore stability. 11 February 2008The Security Council today joined Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in condemning the attempt to assassinate Timorese President Jose Ramos-Horta during an attack on his residence in the fledgling Asian country’s capital, Dili, this morning.
29 May 2008The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Japan today announced a new $92 million initiative to help Africa adapt to global warming. “Climate change is one of the most critical issues that governments and citizens around the world need to address,” said Olav Kjorven, UNDP Assistant Administrator and Director of Bureau for Development Policy.The programme, announced today during the high-level Fourth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD), will be launched in August.The UNDP/Japan initiative seeks to help governments revise their current anti-poverty strategies to come into line with climate change’s potential effects on development.“As a result of climate change, many African countries will experience increased water scarcity and worsened health and food security,” Mr. Kjorven said, stressing that global warming threatens economic and social progress.“Unless we act now, climate change may threaten everything we will attempt to achieve in the future,” he added.Of the $92 million, $11 million will be allocated to projects in collaboration with the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the UN World Food Programme (WFP) and the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).UNDP and Japan have joined forces in the past on successful projects, in countries such as Afghanistan and Sudan and in the areas affected by the Chernobyl nuclear disaster.
The UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) is to discuss a report on Sri Lanka on Monday.The UNHRC is to consider the report of the former Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers by the new mandate holder, Diego García-Sayán, on his mission to Sri Lanka. The visit was conducted jointly with the Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment, Juan E. Méndez.In addition to visiting Colombo, the Special Rapporteur travelled to Anuradhapura, Jaffna and Kandy. The Rapporteur met with the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Minister for Justice, the Minister for Law and Order and the Minister for Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs; the Governors of the Central, North Central and Northern Provinces; and representatives of the Judicial Service Commission, the Human Rights Commission, the Legal Aid Commission, the National Police Commission and the Judges’ Institute. She also held meetings with the Chief Justice and judges from all tiers, the Attorney-General and State counsels, representatives of the Sri Lanka Bar Association, lawyers, academics, representatives of civil society and members of the diplomatic community. (Colombo Gazette) The Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers, Mónica Pinto, visited Sri Lanka from 29 April to 7 May 2016, at the invitation of the Government, to assess the situation and remaining challenges concerning the independence of judges, prosecutors and lawyers and the proper administration of justice. The report is to be discussed on Monday during the ongoing session of the UNHRC in Geneva.
DOWNLOAD1. SMMT – Exports reach record high2. CV production rises by a third3. Low carbon technology in the automotive sector receives £75 million funding4. MAC review of Tier 2 migration5. PM to urge business for EU reform support6. Week aheadClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
Friday’s games mark the start of the quarterfinals and feature a UEFA vs. UEFA matchup in the morning followed by a CONMEBOL vs. CONMEBOL game in the afternoon. In the first match of the day, Germany has a 52.5 percent chance of defeating France and advancing to the semifinals, according to FiveThirtyEight’s World Cup predictions. In the second, however, Brazil is heavily favored to defeat Colombia (72 percent to 28 percent) and play the winner of Germany vs. France in the semifinal next week.France vs. Germany: 12 p.m. EDTBrazil vs. Colombia: 4 p.m. EDTIN BRIEFSee our World Cup predictions for the latest probabilities.IN DEPTHAll eight teams still in the tournament won their respective groups, so there are no true underdogs left. But if we go back to the beginning, Brazil and Germany both had very good chances of reaching this stage of the knockout rounds (80 percent and 68 percent) compared to Colombia and France (46 percent and 45 percent).France and Germany are old foes, having faced each other 25 times since 1930 (prior to 1990, Germany competed as West Germany). In those games France has been victorious 11 times compared to Germany’s eight. However, almost all of these games were friendlies. The last time these two teams met competitively was in the 1986 World Cup semifinals, and Germany edged France 2-0. ESPN’s Soccer Power Index rates France vs. Germany as the most evenly matched of all the quarterfinal games.Brazil vs. Colombia, on the other hand, is supposed to be anything but even. Strangely, these teams have also met 25 times, and Colombia has managed to win only twice. A Seleção have slaughtered Los Cafeteros on more than one occasion, 9-0 in 1959 and 6-2 in 1969, but this is a different Colombia team. Their last meeting with Brazil, a friendly in the U.S. in 2012, ended in a 1-1 draw.Brazil trumps Colombia in overall and offensive SPI ratings (90.6 and 3.1 to 89.4 and 2.6) but Colombia’s defense is slightly better, with an SPI rating of 0.4 average goals allowed to Brazil’s 0.5 (lower defensive scores are better). Brazil’s defense has something to worry about in James Rodriguez, this World Cup’s breakout star for Colombia, who has tallied five goals — the most of any player so far — including this beautiful chest-to-volley on the turn against Uruguay:But Brazil’s Neymar (and Argentina’s Lionel Messi and Germany’s Thomas Muller) are only one goal behind Rodriguez, so if Brazil clinches a win in this clash of the golden boys, Rodriguez may be out of the race for this year’s golden boot.OFF THE PITCHFrance and Germany are neighbors, and each has international power and its own distinct culture — berets and baguettes vs. lederhosen and bratwurst. So given the ease of travel between the countries, it’s not surprising that there’s a lot of cross-tourism. According to the French Ministry of Handicrafts, Trade and Tourism, there were about 6.3 million overnight stays in France from German tourists in 2012. Conversely, the German National Tourist Board reported that there were roughly 3.1 million, or half as many, overnight stays in Germany from French tourists in the same year. When adjusted for each country’s total population at the time, this means that about 8 percent of Germany’s 80.4 million people stayed overnight in France at least once in 2012, while about 5 percent of France’s 65.7 million people stayed overnight in Germany. They may not be the best of friends, but it looks like the old enemies have at least upgraded to a friendly rivalry — at least as far as tourism goes. — Hayley MunguiaFURTHER READINGWith the U.S. Out, Which World Cup Team Will Americans Root For?Tim Howard Lost, But He Just Had the Best Match of the World CupA Chart For Predicting Penalty-Shootout Odds in Real TimeCORRECTION (July 4, 10:57 a.m.): An earlier version of this post had the incorrect year of the last competitive meeting between France and Germany. While the two teams did face off in 1982, they also met in the 1986 World Cup semifinals.
Women are being told by their bosses to put on more make-up, and wear high heels and short skirts to work, research has found.One in five women said they felt that their bosses paid more attention to their appearance than they did to their male colleagues, a survey by law firm Slater and Gordon found.Seven per cent of women said their bosses had urged them to wear high heels in the office or with clients because it made them “more appealing”, while eight per cent were told to wear more make-up so they “looked prettier”. It comes after one receptionist said she was sent home from her job at an accountancy firm for wearing flat shoes. The survey asked 2,000 employees about how they felt their appearance was judged in the workplace.Nearly half of men said their dress code was more clearly defined than women’s and less likely to draw comment. The survey claimed 28 per cent of women reported they had been advised that changing their appearance would be “better for business” while 13 per cent said they had decided to flaunt more flesh at work after suggestions by more senior employees to vamp up their appearance.In contrast over half of men said they had never received comments about their appearance and just three per cent had occasionally been told to dress smarter by their senior colleagues.Current UK employment law states a dress code can be used but this is usually imposed for health and safety reasons, or to promote a particular image, for example, of smartness and efficiency. Nicola Thorp said she was sent home for not wearing heels when working as a receptionistCredit:Adam Gray /SWNS Some bosses tell female staff to wear more make-up, the survey foundCredit:Getty In 2016 there is absolutely no expectation that women in business should wear make-up or high heels in order to be smartly dressedJosephine Van Lierop, lawyer It must not be discriminatory on protected grounds such as gender or religious belief, and disabled employees have the right to have adjustments made to alleviate disadvantage.Employment lawyer Josephine Van Lierop said: “Under current UK employment law employers cannot treat one person less favourably because of their gender but there is no legislation to prevent employers from treating men and women differently in relation to dress code.”Employers will argue that men and women must be dressed smartly or well groomed for a person of their gender.”However, in 2016 there is absolutely no expectation that women in business should wear make-up or high heels in order to be smartly dressed. Imposing this expectation on women only is arguably unlawful sex discrimination.” 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.
(AFP) – Cancer survival is increasing across the world but large gaps endure between nations, while some cancers remain hard to treat everywhere, according to a major review released Wednesday.The progress and the gap are especially large for childhood cancers, according to the CONCORD-3 study covering 71 nations and 18 types of cancer, published in the medical journal The Lancet.For children with brain tumours, for example, five-year survival has improved across the board from 54 percent for the period 2000-2004, to more than 60 percent for 2010-2014.In the United States, Denmark, Sweden and Slovakia, the survival rate progressed to 80 percent or better. In Mexico and Brazil, however, less than 40 per cent of children diagnosed with brain tumours survived in the 2010-2014 period.Similarly, five-year survival for the most common type of childhood cancer — acute lymphoblastic leukaemia — rose to higher than 90 per cent in Canada, the United States and nine European countries, but remained below 60 per cent in China and Mexico.“This likely reflects the availability and quality of diagnostic and treatment services,” the authors said in a statement.The world has seen across-the-board progress on breast cancer, the study showed.For women diagnosed with the disease in the United States and Australia between 2010 and 2014, five-year survival was 90 per cent. In 16 western European countries, the rate improved to 85 per cent, and stood at 71 per cent for eastern European nations.In India, breast cancer survival improved during those five years to 66 per cent.37.5 million casesLiver and lung cancers remain quick killers in both rich and developing countries, but the last 20 years have seen some progress.Between 1995 and 2014, liver cancer survival increased in South Korea (from 11 to 27 percent), Sweden (5 to 17 per cent), and Portugal (8 to 19 per cent).Similarly, lung cancer survival went up by 5 to 10 per cent in 21 countries, including Britain. The most progress was seen in China (from 8 to 20 per cent), Japan (23 to 33 per cent), and South Korea (10 to 25 per cent).Pancreatic cancer remained highly lethal everywhere, with five-year survival rates typically under 15 per cent.“Greater international efforts are needed to understand the risk factors for this rapidly lethal cancer,” said co-author Michel Coleman, a researcher at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.Led by Claudia Allemani from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, the Concord-3 study marshalled hundreds of experts and more than 300 cancer registries covering 37.5 million cancer cases — three-quarters of all the cancers diagnosed worldwide from 2000 to 2014.Thirty-one European countries were included, along with 17 from Asia and 13 from Latin America. Only six African countries were included, due to a lack of data.“Despite more than 20 years of advocacy for …fully functional cancer registries, both political and financial support remains woeful,” said Richard Sullivan, a professor at Kings Health Partners Comprehensive Cancer Centre in London. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedT&T among highest cancer mortality rates in the Americas – reportNovember 7, 2013In “Regional”Blood test offers hope of finding cancers before symptoms developJune 1, 2018In “latest news”Latin America, C’bean record over 28,000 cervical cancer deaths annuallyFebruary 1, 2019In “Health”
The 2018 International Tin Conference in Budapest was successfully held last month, with over 200 delegates in attendance. The conference programme highlighted, in particular, the increasing focus on responsible tin sourcing, while assessing the outlook for tin supply and impact of new technologies.During the conference, various views on responsible sourcing were expressed by a range of stakeholders across the tin supply chain. Supply chain due diligence emerged as a key theme, with the London Metal Exchange, European Commission, the International Tin Association (ITA) all outlining progress in developing and implementing new supply-chain standards and requirements for tin. Tin consumers present raised concerns about overlapping or unharmonized standards. Tin producers hope that the ITA Code of Conduct can address this concern by becoming the universal standard for responsible tin supply in the tin industry.The growth of Electric Vehicles presents new opportunities for tin, with various potential uses in lithium-ion batteries and in the development of supporting infrastructure. However, innovation in the tin industry is also visible in mining and processing technology. Presentations outlined how optical ore sorting can successfully be applied to tin ore processing for hard-rock mines and that it has been adopted both by the San Rafael mine in Peru and Renison in Tasmania.A number of tin exploration and development companies provided progress updates for projects in Australia, Canada, DR Congo and Morocco. Some existing producers outlined how they are working on new sources of tin supply, with Minsur developing its B2 tailings project and carrying out advanced exploration at a number of deposits proximal to the San Rafael mine. PT Timah is trialling both onshore and offshore borehole mining with plans to invest in this extraction method in the coming years. However, the ITA continues to warn that global tin supply will likely be insufficient to meet rising demand in the years ahead without price increases.Its next event will be Asia Tin Week in Shenzhen, China, to be held provisionally September 16-18, 2018.
REPRESENTATIVES OF VETERANS for Peace from the US, UK and Ireland today attended a peace vigil at Shannon Airport to mark the anniversary of the beginning of the war in Iraq.Veterans for Peace was founded in the USA in 1985, in opposition to US military intervention in Central America, and now has over 8,000 members.Its objectives include bringing about a clearer understanding of the cost of war, in particular the US-led occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan, to close the School of the Americas and to counter military recruitment efforts in schools. They have also undertaken significant humanitarian projects in war zones such as Iraq and campaigns against torture.Today anti-war group Shannonwatch said that Ireland’s record of promoting UN peacekeeping missions has been “tarnished” by the Irish government’s complicity in the CIA rendition programme by allowing planes to refuel at Shannon.Last month, a report by the Open Justice Initiative showed that 54 countries, including Ireland, helped to facilitate the CIA’s secret detention, rendition and interrogation programme in the years after 9/11.However the Department of Justice maintained that “no evidence of rendition” was found in any garda investigation into allegations involving Shannon Airport.Shannonwatch said the peace vigil held today was one of the regular monthly vigils organised by the anti-war group.“It also marks the invasion of Iraq by the US and its allies which began on 20 March 2003, and was undertaken on the basis of a lie about weapons of mass destruction that Iraq never possessed,” the group said. “Hundreds of thousands of people died as a result, including thousands of American soldiers.”Shannonwatch said its vigils will continue for as long as Irish territory and airspace is being “misused to facilitate wars of aggression and human rights abuses.”Related: “No evidence of rendition” in garda investigations>More: Report shows Ireland facilitated CIA rendition programme>
SPOKANE — Democrats in Washington state celebrated early primary returns as they seek to capture three GOP-held congressional districts – including one occupied by Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, a top Republican House leader.Washington’s primaries are a top-two system, meaning the two candidates with the most votes advance regardless of party. It’s encouraging to Democrats that their candidate, Lisa Brown, has nearly as many votes as McMorris Rodgers in early returns Wednesday.In two other races the Democrats hope to win, their candidates combined had a larger vote total than the incumbent Republican, giving Democrats hope they’ll consolidate that support in November.Washington is a vote-by-mail state, and voters had a deadline of 8 p.m. Tuesday to have their ballot postmarked or placed in a drop box. In some of the more competitive races, results may not be known for days as most counties will update vote counts only once a day.Just over 24 percent of the vote had been counted by Tuesday night. State GOP chairman Caleb Heimlich said that “it’s still too early to come to any big conclusions.”
ASA welcomed a joint statement from the U.S. and five like-minded nations this week expressing those governments’ mutual desire to pursue innovation in plant biotechnology.Among other commitments, the statement shows an effort by the nations to “endeavor to work together to promote synchronization of [biotechnology trait] authorizations by regulatory authorities, in particular for food, feed and processing purposes.”Joining the U.S. on the statement are the governments of Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, and Paraguay, which combine to account for more than 86 percent of global soybean production.For a transcript of the letter, please click here.
“Nintendo has no third party games.” “The only third party games Nintendo gets are casual and cartoony.” These two common criticisms, fairly or not, have haunted Nintendo since the N64 era at least. And naturally they’ve return to plague the new Nintendo Switch.We’ve got nothing against casual games. Two recent family-friendly games we’ve really been enjoying on Switch are Lego Marvel Superheroes 2 and Snipperclips Plus. It’s great being able to play action-packed adventures as blocky little Guardians of the Galaxy on the go or hear Captain Marvel make Brie Larson/cheese jokes. Meanwhile, Snipperclips Plus adds enough new content, like extra levels and a freeform paint mode, to totally make it worth returning to one of the Switch’s best surprise launch games.However, for a video game system to have a truly healthy library, it needs to have games for everyone, and that includes adult hardcore gamers. Past Nintendo systems, console or handheld, haven’t necessarily kept up with the competition when it comes to AAA games not made by Nintendo itself.That’s why the past week or so has been fascinating to watch as a satisfied Nintendo Switch owner. All it once we got Switch ports of Doom, Skyrim, and L.A. Noire. Despite their lateness, these ports are three very big, very mature, very Western games, the exact type of game we’re very not used to seeing on Nintendo platforms. Given the Switch’s fast success, the thinking is third parties are testing the waters before taking any bigger risks with the device. In the meantime that means Switch owners have three more acclaimed AAA games to partake in.But this AAA third party gamble only works if the games sell well, and the games are only worth buying if they’re actually good on the Switch. We recently played Doom, Skyrim, and L.A. Noire to let you know whether these new Nintendo Switch games are worth picking up for the mature gamers in your lives this holiday. Just make sure to grab a microSD card since big games mean big file sizes even with a cartridge.DoomOver a year later, I’m still astonished by how good Doom is. Id Software managed to take one of its own original sacred texts of first-person shooters, modernize it, but also make it play unlike anything else by staying true to classic Doom’s core spirit of fast brutal gameplay in the depths of Hell. It was my actual Game of the Year last year. The polish and thoughtfulness of Doom’s design and gameplay also make it seem a bit like a Nintendo game, Metroid starring Riddick.And Doom plays so well on Nintendo Switch I’ll probably play through it all over again. As we said during our hands-on the weaker Switch hardware means the game runs at a reduced framerate and resolution. But it still feels as fluid and fun as Doom ever did, and being able to play Doom within seconds no matter where I am will be the death of me. I’m even more willing to give the less-than-stellar multiplayer mode a shot, since that and the arcade mode are the only extras left after custom levels were cut. It may take compromises, but Doom is proof that any current-gen PS4 or Xbox One game could come to Switch in some acceptable way.SkyrimI’m shocked by how much I’m enjoying Skyrim. I played Fallout 4 two years ago but was unimpressed. And Skyrim just seemed like more of the same but older and with a fantasy aesthetic that interested me even less. But because the game is so old now, it appears Bethesda has had time to iron out its infamous technical issues. The result is a sprawling open-world RPG that still runs impressively smooth on a mobile-powered handheld despite the game’s vast complexity and potential for player choice. It doesn’t feel like it’s going to fall apart at any given moment, unlike Fallout 4. The Switch version even manages to include more modest versions of the recent Special Edition visual enhancements.Like Zelda, Skyrim also proves how well-suited the Switch is for open world games. You can easily lose yourself for hundreds of powers playing this on your TV (with optional motion controls) or in bed. But you can also still make meaningful progress in short bursts. I spent an evening tackling a huge dungeon and the following morning train ride selling off extra equipment and healing diseases at a shrine. And speaking of Zelda, you can unlock Zelda-themed equipment. It’s a small addition, but summoning Amiibo prizes through your dragon shouts will never not be hilarious.L.A. NoireL.A. Noire is odd duck among Rockstar games. It was developed by the now-defunct external studio Team Bondi, not internally. It’s set in actual historic Los Angeles and not some fictional period California-inspired city. You play as a straight-laced detective and not some mouthy criminal. And although the game is technically set in a big open world, that’s really just a shell for the intimate detective work the game is far more interested in.But that’s really cool. The game is brave enough to be the almost Phoenix Wright-style adventure game it actually is and not the Grand Theft Auto it initially looks like. On Switch, you can touch the screen or use motion to examine clues from all angles or feel when new information is nearby. The action bits, like gunfights and brawls and chases, feel a little stiff but in a way that oddly makes sense for playing as a cop. You’re even penalized for reckless driving.But of course L.A. Noire’s standout feature is its hyper realistic face-capture animation tech, where you must analyze “subtle” facial tics to figure out if a suspect is lying. It’s kind of surreal seeing such intricate faces, like Mad Men’s own Aaron Stanton/Ken Cosgrove as the lead character, in a game that is still clearly last-gen gen (which at least helps it hit 1080p docked on Switch). But the focus on exaggerated movements, turning the expressions into a puzzle unto themselves, keeps the game from slipping into the uncanny valley. And if you’re looking to hurt your wallet a little less this holiday, L.A. Noire is the only AAA port here offered at a reduced price.The FutureYour mileage may vary depending on your taste in genre and tolerance for technical compromises, but Doom, Skyrim, and L.A. Noire are all absolutely worth playing on Nintendo Switch based on our time with them. Play them right beside Super Mario Odyssey and you won’t feel like you’re getting some second rate experience.These quality third party ports make us hopeful for what other kinds of unexpected current M-rated AAA games could soon go portable. Bethesda is already working on Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus for Switch. The L.A. Noire port sparked rumors of an eventual Grand Theft Auto V on Switch. But you know what I’d love to see on the platform? The Witcher III. Geralt on the go would be a game changer.Want to learn more? Here’s everything you need to know about the Nintendo Switch.Buy it now!Super Mario OdysseyThe Legend of Zelda: Breath of the WildNintendo SwitchProtect Your Nintendo Switch With These Awesome CasesView as: One Page Slides1/51. The Nintendo Switch of course has a fair amount of casual, family-friendly games. But for the library to be healthy, it needs some mature titles, too.2. Doom was arguably 2016’s Game of the Year, and it remains fast and fluid on Switch despite technical compromises.3. Now that Bethesda has had years to iron out old kinks, Skyrim’s vast open fantasy world runs smooth on Switch and is perfect for portable play.4. No matter what platform you play it on, L.A. Noire’s detective yarn is an offbeat kind of Rockstar game.5. Big third parties are running out of excuses not to support Nintendo Switch.Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey. Stay on target Controller Patent Teases SNES Games on SwitchPlay These Nintendo Switch Games Before ‘Pokemon Sword and Shield&…
By: Pan PylasSource: The Associated Press Tags: Spain, Trend Watch Tuesday, November 7, 2017 << Previous PostNext Post >> LONDON — The restive Spanish region of Catalonia faces a potential $500 million financial hit in the fourth quarter as business-related travel dips following the attack in Barcelona and the uncertainty generated by the disputed independence referendum.In an interview Monday with The Associated Press at the World Travel Market in London, Catalonia’s top tourism official Patrick Torrent said the region will likely see a 10-12 per cent fall in tourist numbers during the fourth quarter, which would equate to around 450 million euros. The large bulk of that fall is related to a drop-off in business travel to events such as conventions.Despite the anticipated fourth-quarter decline, the executive director at the Catalan Tourist Board, said Catalonia is set to see revenues this year outstrip those last year and that the expectation is that revenues will rise again next.However, more insight will emerge at the turn of the year when the bulk of pre-reservations are made. His staff, he said, are “on alert” about the impact on the main booking season.The worry among many economists is that deteriorating business environment in Catalonia, which has seen around 1,500 firms move their headquarters out of the region, could worsen further amid all the uncertainty. Credit ratings agency Moody’s has warned that the region’s financial recovery is being jeopardizedMore news: Canada raises travel warning amid escalating protests in Hong Kong“Moody’s believes that the political instability will negatively affect the region’s economy, in particular foreign investor sentiment and the tourism sector, and add pressure to the region’s already weak finances,” it said last week.The Catalan tourism industry, a key income generator in what is Spain’s richest region, has had a difficult few months. After the August attacks in Barcelona and a nearby town that saw 16 people killed, the region has been embroiled in a battle of wills with Spain over the disputed independence referendum in early October which prompted Madrid to impose direct rule and seek the arrest of members of the Catalan government, including its leader, Carles Puigdemont, who has fled to Brussels.The impact of the attack in Barcelona on holiday travellers was short-lived, according to Torrent, and “less important” than other cities in Europe, such as Brussels or Paris.“The perception of Barcelona and Catalonia as a safe destination has not suffered any impact,” he said, noting figures showing tourism numbers higher in September.More news: Rome enforces ban on sitting on Spanish StepsTorrent said he met up with Alvaro Nadal, the Spanish minister of energy, tourism and digital matters, on Monday for the first time since the triggering of Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution which imposed direct rule on Catalonia.Torrent said the Spanish government has made no requirements upon him or his staff and that it is “business as usual” until an early Catalan regional election on Dec. 21.“It’s not intervention. It’s more a kind of co-ordination,” he said. “It’s easy, it’s not complicated, with good relations without problems, at this moment.”Before direct rule, Torrent would speak with Spanish tourism officials two or three times a month. Now, it’s that amount of times a week.Torrent urged all participants in upcoming demonstrations in Catalonia before the election, including one this Saturday, to remain peaceful and law-abiding.“It’s important to say that our streets are normal, our restaurants are working as usual, our destination is exactly the same situation,” Torrent said. Catalonia’s tourism faces a 10% hit in fourth quarter Share
FILE – In this Sept. 25, 2018, file photo, Bill Cosby arrives for a sentencing hearing following his sexual assault conviction at the Montgomery County Courthouse in Norristown Pa. Court filings on Friday, April 5, 2019, showed that Cosby has agreed to settle lawsuits in a Massachusetts case filed by seven women who said he defamed them when he accused them of lying about sexual misconduct allegations. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File) bill cosby|Defamation|lawsuits Filings: Bill Cosby agrees to settle 7 defamation lawsuits Related Stories High court won’t take up dispute involving Bill CosbyCosby vows no remorse, even if he sits in prison 10 years by Maryclaire Dale, The Associated Press Posted Apr 5, 2019 10:43 am PDT Last Updated Apr 5, 2019 at 2:37 pm PDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Bill Cosby has agreed to settle lawsuits filed by seven women who say he defamed them when he accused them of lying about sexual misconduct allegations, according to court documents filed Friday in Massachusetts.The papers in federal court in Springfield show the two sides have negotiated a settlement since Cosby went to prison last fall in a separate Pennsylvania sex assault case. The 81-year-old comedian is serving a three- to 10-year prison sentence there.The judge overseeing the defamation case in Massachusetts must still approve the settlement. The terms are confidential.RELATED: High court won’t take up dispute involving Bill CosbyIt’s not yet clear whether Cosby will now drop his counterclaims against the seven women, including one who recently died. They are among the dozens of women who have accused Cosby of sexual misconduct. He has denied their allegations and is appealing his Pennsylvania conviction.Messages seeking comment were left with Cosby’s spokesman and a lead lawyer in the defamation case.The women suing Cosby for defamation say he defamed them by branding them liars after they went public with allegations of sexual assault. They include Tamara Green, Therese Serignese and Barbara Bowman.Cosby has denied their allegations.RELATED: Cosby vows no remorse, even if he sits in prison 10 yearsLawyer Joseph Cammarata, who represents the women, said Friday that “each plaintiff is satisfied with the settlement.” He declined to comment further.However, he warned in a status report also filed Friday that his clients would seek to depose Cosby and gather other documents and evidence if he does not drop the counterclaims, which accuse the women of harming his reputation through their accusations.Cosby’s wife, Camille, had been ordered to give a deposition in the case in 2016, after a heated court fight over her testimony.Lawyers for the Cosbys tried to quash her subpoena to testify, saying she didn’t have any relevant information on the women’s claims and that any marital conversations she had with her husband of 50 years were confidential. The judge agreed that marital conversations were private, but the women’s lawyers noted she also served as his business manager throughout their long marriage.The case had largely been put on hold, though, while Cosby was amid the Pennsylvania criminal case, which involved a 2017 trial that ended in a deadlock and his conviction at a 2018 retrial.
One would think that the politician would need to be able to answer emails on the fly at all hours of the day, The main argument of the Kerala unit is that any alliance with the Congress may harm CPM’s prospects in the coming Lok Sabha poll since Congress is its major opponent in the state. When contacted.
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