Panda ‘welcomes’ his removal as spokesman

first_imgEven though Lok Sabha MP from Kendrapara Baijayant Panda has “welcomed” his removal as spokesperson of the Biju Janata Dal Parliamentary Party, trouble seems to be far from over in Odisha’s ruling party.Feigning ignorance about the reasons behind his removal, Mr. Panda told a news agency on Saturday that if his removal benefits the party he would certainly welcome it. Attempts to talk to him over the phone proved futile.Sources in the BJD said by removing Mr. Panda as the spokesperson, Chief Minister and BJD president Naveen Patnaik had given out a message that he was not happy about the MP going public about party’s internal matters.‘Attempt to provoke CM’Political analysts are of the view that Mr Panda’s comments about his removal were an attempt to provoke Mr. Patnaik to take action against Cuttack MP Bhartruhari Mahtab, who also had written articles about the party.However, BJD sources said that no action is likely against Mr Mahtab.Mr. Panda had been removed as the spokesperson for going beyond the party line, said Food Supplies & Consumer Welfare Minister and party spokesperson, Surjya Narayan Patro.Responding to queries from the media, the Chief Minister had recently asked party leaders to approach him directly if they any concerns instead of going to the media. What has disturbed the BJD leadership is that both Mr. Panda and Mr. Mahtab wrote about party’s internal problems after the panchayat elections in which the Bharatiya Janata Party did exceedingly well, replacing the Congress as the BJD’s main rival.The exact nature of Mr. Patnaik’s approach to strengthen the party organisation will become evident after the Presidential elections in July, political analysts said.last_img read more

Texas Cancer Research Agency Back on Track

first_img Texas’s $3 billion cancer research agency is back in business. Yesterday, state leaders lifted a moratorium on new grants at the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) that had been in place since December.Governor Rick Perry had asked CPRIT to freeze operations after a string of controversies involving conflicts of interest and other irregularities. The trouble began in May 2012 with the resignation of CPRIT Chief Scientific Officer Alfred Gilman, a Nobel Prize winner, over the agency’s review procedures, and culminated in the resignation of two other top leaders.In the months since, the Texas legislature passed a bill to overhaul CPRIT’s operations. The agency also has a new oversight board that will hold its first meeting tomorrow.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)In a letter, Perry and other leaders say the agency can now finalize 118 awards that had been approved when the moratorium took effect. According to a timeline on CPRIT’s website, the agency is recruiting scientific peer reviewers and expects to issue new requests for proposals in the next few weeks.Since 2010, the agency had made 498 awards for cancer research and prevention to Texas institutions totaling $836 million, making it the second largest U.S. funding source for cancer research after the National Cancer Institute. CPRIT last_img read more

Over 500 political workers and leaders in detention in Kashmir

first_imgOver 500 important political workers and leaders, including former chief ministers Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, have been detained in Jammu and Kashmir since the Centre decided to revoke provisions of Article 370 and divide the state to two union territories, officials said.Activists across the political spectrum have been detained in Srinagar as well as other parts of the valley, they said.According to latest reports, about 560 such workers have been lodged in makeshift detention centres in Sher-e-Kashmir International Convention Centre in Srinagar and other such centres in Baramulla and Gurez.Former chief ministers Omar Abdullah of the National Conference and Mehbooba Mufti of the PDP have been detained at Hari Niwas on Gupkar road.Amid the restrictions in place in the city, one person was killed in Noorbagh locality. A group of youngsters had gathered in the area and they were chased by CRPF personnel because of confusion over curfew, they said.One of the youths jumped into the Jhelum river to escape the wrath of the heavily-armed paramilitary forces, but drowned. There was a protest in the locality but it ended after a cane charging in which six people were injured, they said.The officials said curfew has not been declared, but authorities have ordered strict implementation of Section 144 of the CrPC which prohibits assembly of over five people in an area.There are reports of other such clashes from across the valley but details are still not known because of the clampdown on communication links, they said.last_img read more


first_imgPlaying as a forward, Falcao has scored a staggering Playing as a forward, Falcao has scored a staggering 932 goals in 697 club appearances as well as 339 strikes in 201 appearances for Brazil on the international front. Owing to his incredible success, Falcao achieved superstardom in the sport. He said, “Futsal is like religion to me. To get an opportunity to play the sport that has made me what I am today in front of so many people is a once in a lifetime opportunity. Asked what makes him think that Futsal would click in India and Falcao said the concept, which is fast growing in popularity, would go well with the fast developing Indian economy. “India is the fastest growing country and Futsal is the fastest growing indoor sport of the world ? it would be a great platform to showcase what Futsal is all about to the Indian youth. “Futsal is a young sport which oozes of tricks, flair and flamboyance. For the second largest population of the world which has opened itself up to so many different sports, futsal will definitely attract a lot of young talent.” To conclude, he reiterated that the indoor version of football is the way forward. “Futsal is the fastest growing indoor sports in the world. Many countries have mandated their football federations to take up futsal in a much larger way. It comes down to a simple question – who doesnt love a sachet!? “Having established itself as a unique sport with a different talent pool as compared to football, futsal is becoming hugely popular in the core markets of the US and UK.” PTI AH PM PMadvertisementlast_img read more

Team India living it up in Sri Lanka: Pool splashes and fun dinners

first_imgTeam India has been through a lot in the past two months. They were unable to defend the Champions Trophy in a one-sided defeat to Pakistan in the final and then the controversial Anil Kumble-Virat Kohli saga dominated headlines.Things took a nastier turn when the BCCI tried to settle for a new coach in Ravi Shastri and asked for applications for the post.After what seemed like an eternity, Kohli finally managed to get his way with Shastri being announced as full time head coach, at least until the next World Cup in two years time.Shastri in turn got to pick his own team of support staff of coaches and the result in his match being a 304-run hammering of a below-par and disappointing Sri  Lankan team in Galle. The attention was firmly back on the cricket being played on the field, and probably rightly so.On Saturday the hosts, chasing a mammoth 550 for victory, only managed 245 runs before their second innings folded in the final session of the penultimate day, after opening batsman Dimuth Karunaratne had been dismissed for 97.Asela Gunaratne, who had fractured his thumb and was ruled out of the series, and stand-in captain Rangana Herath, who suffered a hand injury on Friday, did not bat for Sri Lanka in the second innings.Returning to the longest format in the game, India continued their domination and finished off the game with a day to spare. The effect of a much more stable dressing room telling. The mood of the squad has been relaxed with the whole team gelling well and spending time with each other on their hard earned off-days.advertisementA day which was spent “chilling by the pool” and Kohli, Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul were prompt to put up their fun pictures on social media.Sun soaked ?#supertan #lankandiaries hardik pandya (@hardikpandya7) July 31, 2017When skipper says #selfie you pout and . #chillday by the beach ?????????? #galle @imVkohli K L Rahul (@klrahul11) July 30, 2017Fun times in the sun with these boys! @imVkohli @klrahul11 hardik pandya (@hardikpandya7) July 30, 2017Chilling by the pool. Good times. ? @klrahul11 Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) July 30, 2017Pandya made his debut in Galle and will look to continue his good world with bat and ball, while KL Rahul missed the first Test with a bout of viral fever but looks fit to return to the playing XI in the second match in Colombo starting on Thursday.  Before the start of the first Test, BCCI had posted a video on Facebook where players can be seen having lunch, stressing how the ‘Men in Blue’ are closely monitored by nutritionists who keep a check on what they eat after and during matches and on days when they have to practice.last_img read more

Toronto Blue Jays End 17-Game Bronx Losing Streak with Help from Yankees

first_imgTHE BRONX – For nearly two years, the Toronto Blue Jays had walked off the field at Yankee Stadium with losses. Every time.Dan Johnson’s 70-foot infield hit helped the Blue Jays stop their 17-game skid in the Bronx.Johnson drove in four runs with the seventh-inning single and a three-run homer in the ninth, lifting the Blue Jays over New York 6-4 on Saturday for their first win at Yankee Stadium since Aug. 29, 2012.“We were trying anything,” Johnson said, “just to kind of change the feeling, the mojo here.”Toronto didn’t take batting practice before Friday’s 6-3 loss or on Saturday. Manager John Gibbons described the losing streak as feeling “Volkswagen tracks” on his neck.Brian McCann’s two-run homer off Drew Hutchison (7-9) put New York ahead, but the Blue Jays tied the score in the fifth against Chris Capuano, who was making his Yankees debut, on Melky Cabrera’s RBI double and Steve Tolleson’s sacrifice fly.Toronto went ahead in the seventh when Shawn Kelley (1-3) walked Cabrera leading off and Jose Bautista doubled him to third.Dioner Navarro, who had three hits, followed with a grounder to McCann, an All-Star catcher playing first base this week because of Mark Teixeira’s strained back. McCann took a step in, checked the runners, but allowed Navarro to get by him and reach on a fielder’s choice that loaded the bases.“It was a such a strange play,” Navarro said. “We caught a break right there.”Kelley struck out Tolleson, and Johnson was jammed by left-hander Matt Thornton as the ball blooped to the right side. Second baseman Brian Roberts reacted slowly, and the ball landed on the grass in front of him, with McCann and Thornton not far away. All runners were safe, and Toronto led 3-2.“When you lose 17 in a row, you deserve something like that,” Gibbons said.Johnson at first thought the ball might be caught or even called an infield fly.“One of the softest hits I’ve ever got,” he said. “There was three guys converging on it, so I couldn’t really figure out what was going on.”Roberts didn’t think he had a chance to grab it.“Maybe it’s a play I’m supposed to make, but it didn’t happen,” he said. “Bounces don’t always go your way. One guy does everything right and one guy does everything kind of wrong, and the result goes in favor of the one that does everything wrong.”Johnson made it 6-2 with a ninth-inning drive off Jeff Francis over the short porch in right, his first homer since hitting three for the Chicago White Sox at Cleveland on Oct. 3, 2012.Toronto reliever Casey Janssen allowed Carlos Beltran’s two-run homer in the ninth.Hutchison stopped a three-start skid to win for the first time since July 1. He gave up two runs, five hits and three walks in 6 2-3 innings with seven strikeouts.Aaron Loup walked a pair of batters with two outs in the eighth before throwing a called third strike past Brett Gardner with on a two-seam fastball with a full count. Casey Janssen allowed Carlos Beltran’s two-run homer in the ninth.“We needed a win — especially against these guys and especially here,” Loup said. “It seems like everything was bouncing against them today, so it ended up working out for us.”TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

Lorenzo declared fit to race in Thai MotoGP but still in pain

first_imgBuriram (Thailand), Oct 4 (AFP) Jorge Lorenzo was on Thursday declared fit to race in Thailand’s inaugural MotoGP after suffering a foot injury, despite the Ducati driver still feeling the effects of a crash in Aragon last month. The 31-year-old Spaniard dislocated his toe at Turn One of the Aragon Grand Prix, a crash which undid his hard work to seal pole position. He blamed compatriot and world champion Marc Marquez, who went on to win the race and inch closer to his fifth MotoGP world title. Marquez is 72 points ahead of second-place rider Andrea Dovizioso, while Lorenzo is in fourth. In a tweet Thursday MotoGP said Lorenzo was “declared fit” for the weekend’s racing at the Chang International Circuit in Buriram. But Lorenzo, a three-time championship winner, was still using crutches on Thursday to keep the pressure off his damaged foot. “I am positive… Hopefully I will jump into ride tomorrow and I will have enough power,” he told reporters of his chances of competing in Thailand, a day before the start of practice sessions. Marquez called his compatriot on Monday to discuss his condition but was coy on what was said between the pair, who will be stablemates next year at Repsol Honda. “I speak with him (only),” Marquez told reporters. Thailand is hosting the MotoGP for the first time, a big win for a country with hopes of one day luring the Formula One. Preparations were in full swing Thursday, as the sleepy town of Buriram in northeastern Thailand revs up for its biggest sporting event.advertisement Rows of tents also lined the outside of the track in fields to provide extra lodging for the more than 100,000 people expected to descend on the town for Sunday’s race. Fans making the five-hour drive up from Bangkok passed by rice paddies and grazing water buffaloes, a landscape common to Thailand’s rural northeast. The event will take on a local twist with a special exhibition of Muay Thai, the country’s traditional martial art. Riders have not been on the track since February, and some have said the weather is a cause for concern at the tail-end of Thailand’s rainy season, which leaves open the possibility of slick and humid conditions. “It’s very very hot, and it can rain every day,” Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi said. “We hope first of all for a dry race.” With the exception of a brief downfall on Thursday afternoon, the weather was clear and slightly cloudy. (AFP) ATKATKlast_img read more

Shooter Tushar Mane bags silver to open India’s medal account in Youth Olympics

first_imgBuenos Aires, Oct 7 (PTI) India opened its medal account in the Youth Olympic Games with shooter Tushar Mane bagging a silver in the men’s 10m air rifle on the opening day of competitions here on Sunday. Mane, who qualified third for the final, shot 247.5 to win the silver while Grigorii Shamakov took the gold with 249.2. Aleksa Mitrovic of Serbia won the bronze with a score of 227.9. It was close fight among the three podium finishers till the end and Mane edged out Mitrovic for the silver medal by collecting 228.0 as against 227.9 of the Serbian shooter in the penultimate round. But, the final round was not the best one for the Indian as he shot 9.6 and 9.99 while the eventual gold winner had 10.4 and 10.7. In the qualification round held earlier in the day, Mane had shot 623.7 to finish third and qualify for the final. India is being represented by 46 athletes in 13 sports in the prestigious event. This is India’s largest ever contingent at the Youth Olympics. India won two medals — a silver and a bronze — in the last Youth Olympics in 2014 in Nanjing in China. PTI PDS PDS SSCSSClast_img read more

China Wants to Invest in Fourth Set of Locks in Panama

first_imgzoom Work on Panama Canal ExpansionThe Panama Canal Administrator Jorge L. Quijano held an informative meeting with a delegation headed by Mo Wenhe, Chairman of the China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) and Wei Hua Wang, representative of the Chinese-Panamanian Office of Business Development.Mo Wenhe showed interest in the development of projects in the Panama Canal during the upcoming years.“We are exploring our participation in all Canal projects, especially in the design, construction and financing of a Fourth Set of Locks,” Wenhe said.CHEC is a full-service provider of Engineering-Procurement-Construction (EPC), Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) and Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) for the public and private sectors. Currently, CHEC is present in over 80 countries including Panama and conducts projects worldwide for over US$10 billion. The company will be setting up its regional headquarters in Panama.The expansion program of the Panama Canal registered an overall progress of 78%, while the new locks project is currently 73% complete.The project is expected to be complete by December 2015.Press Release, August 12, 2014last_img read more

Traffic Advisory Hants County

first_img Local area office: 902-798-2369 Fax: 902-798-2927 -30- HANTS COUNTY: Elmsdale Bridge Trunk 2 between Elmsdale and Lantz will have intermittent laneclosures for construction of detour approaches and bridge. Traffic control will consist of traffic control persons. Workwill take place from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. and is expected to becompleted by Friday, Oct. 10.last_img

Brilliant Pacquiao downs Thurman to capture WBA crown

first_imgLas Vegas: Filipino legend Manny Pacquiao rolled back the years to become the oldest welterweight champion in boxing history with a thrilling split decision victory over WBA champion Keith Thurman on Saturday.The 40-year-old Pacquiao, 10 years older than the previously undefeated Thurman, delivered a vintage performance at the MGM Grand Garden Arena to leave the sell-out crowd of 14,356 roaring its approval.Pacquiao floored Thurman with an electrifying combination in the first round and remained on the front foot throughout a pulsating 12-round duel. Also Read – Andy Murray to make Grand Slam return at Australian OpenAlthough the bloodied Thurman rallied in the later rounds to narrow Pacquiao’s lead, the judges scored it in the Filipino’s favour. Two judges scored it 115-112 for Pacquiao with the third scoring it 114-113 for Thurman.A jubilant Pacquiao punched the air as the arena erupted after the victory was confirmed.”It was fun,” Pacquiao said afterwards. “My opponent is a good fighter and boxer. He was strong.” Thurman had riled Pacquiao in the build-up to the fight by vowing to “crucify” his deeply religious opponent, and later promising to send the Filipino icon into retirement. Also Read – Fast bowler Behrendorff to undergo spinal surgeryPacquiao, who improved to 62-7-2 with 39 knockouts, was gracious in victory.”I’m not that kind of boxer who talks a lot; we were just promoting the fight,” he said.”He’s a good boxer and he’s strong. I was just blessed tonight.” Pacquiao, who earned an estimated 20 million from Saturday’s fight, is now a major player in the competitive welterweight division once again after capturing Thurman’s WBA welterweight ‘super’ champion belt.The eight-division world champion said he will now return to the Philippines to resume his work as a senator before deciding on his next move inside the ring. “I think I will fight next year,” he said. “I will go back to the Philippines and work and then make a decision.” – No complaints – ================= Thurman meanwhile had few complaints in defeat, embracing Pacquiao after the final bell in recognition of an epic contest.”I knew it was too close,” Thurman said. “He got the knockdown so he had momentum in round one.”This was a beautiful night of boxing. I wish I had a little bit more output to go toe to toe. I felt like he was getting a little bit tired, but he did have experience in the ring.I would love the rematch.” Earlier, a pumped-up Pacquiao had danced into the ring to the strains of Rocky movie anthem “Eye of the Tiger” to bring the crowd to its feet.Deafening chants of “Manny, Manny” rolled around the packed arena as Pacquiao immediately set about building an advantage.Towards the end of the round, the crowd erupted as Pacquiao sent Thurman crashing to the canvas, uncorking a left to the ribs before detonating a right hand on the American’s jaw.That set the tone for the early rounds, with Pacquiao urging Thurman on before using his superior handspeed and footwork to bamboozle his rival.A dazzling combination wobbled Thurman again at the end of the second, and Pacquiao delighted the crowd with an Ali shuffle as the round closed.Although Thurman improved, Pacquiao was able to control the tempo and had Thurman in trouble again in the fifth round with blood pouring from his mouth.Thurman though was in no mood to surrender and he came back into the fight, snapping Pacquiao’s head back with a right cross left jab combination in the seventh round.The younger Thurman appeared to be gaining momentum as the fight drew on, backing up Pacquiao with a clean combination in the eighth.But again, Pacquiao responded strongly, swarming forward in the ninth round to have Thurman rattled again.With Pacquiao leading after the 10th and 11th rounds, Thurman came out for the final round knowing he probably needed a knockout to win.But Pacquiao drew on all of his experience, skipping out of range cleverly to keep Thurman at bay and score a famous win.last_img read more

A Tribe Called Red picked as one of the best

first_imgAPTN National NewsThe Polaris Music Prize announced its list of the top 10 best Canadian albums of the year.A popular Indigenous music trio made the cut.A Tribe Called Red’s album Nation to Nation is among the top 10.The nominations are based on artistic merits alone.Music journalists, bloggers and other experts get to vote and the winner gets $30,000.last_img

Scotiabank says pipeline constraints to cost economy 107 billion in 2018

first_imgThe costs come as delays continue for all three major proposed oil pipelines to export more oil from Western Canada, including Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain expansion, Enbridge’s Line 3 replacement, and TransCanada’s Keystone XL.Canadian producers would need Line 3 and at least one of the other pipelines to go forward or face indefinite pipeline constraints that would have an impact on Canada’s well-being with consequences that extend well beyond Alberta, said Perrault.“The elevated discounts come with a steep economic cost, and represent to a large degree a self-inflicted wound,” he said.The latest economic impacts of the pipeline constraints come as Alberta and British Columbia continue to quarrel over the construction of the Trans Mountain project, pitting arguments of economic impact against the importance of protecting coastlines and limiting greenhouse gas emissions.The current squeeze in pipeline capacity has been expected for some time, but the leak and temporary shutdown on TransCanada’s Keystone pipeline last November sped up the problem, said Perrault.The shutdown led to oil storage tanks in Alberta to fill to record volumes and sent the spread between Western Canadian and U.S. crude to more than US$30 a barrel, while the regulator-imposed 20 percent reduced capacity on Keystone has continued to limit a recovery. The discount on Western Canadian oil production since the spill has hovered around US$24 a barrel, much higher than the US$13 spread for the past two years, and Scotiabank expects it to average US$21.6 a barrel for 2018.Western Canadian production is discounted somewhat both by quality and transportation costs, but has spiked several times in the past decade as pipeline space runs tight. CALGARY, A.B. — Delayed oil pipeline construction is causing a steep discount for Canadian crude prices that is costing the economy roughly $15.6 billion a year or about 0.75 percent of GDP, according to Scotiabank.“Pipeline approval delays have imposed clear, demonstrable and substantial economic costs on the Canadian economy,” said Scotiabank’s chief economist Jean-Francois Perrault in a report Tuesday.The discount, however, is expected to ease through the year as more rail capacity becomes available to ship oil, bringing the expected cost to roughly $10.7 billion or 0.5 percent of GDP for 2018 and then $7 billion or 0.3 percent of GDP a year until more pipeline capacity comes online.last_img read more

Almost 100 million needed to help feed Indonesias poorest says UN agency

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has appealed for $98 million to run a three-year project to feed the hungry in Indonesia, where millions of poor children across the South-East Asian archipelago are malnourished. Launching the initiative yesterday in the capital Jakarta, WFP’s Asia Regional Director Tony Banbury said the agency’s current assistance programmes in Indonesia will be at risk unless new funding is secured soon. The planned three-year programme – which has not received any significant contributions or pledges so far – will provide 840,000 Indonesians with direct food aid, focusing on “the poorest of the poor” in West Timor, Lombok, Madura, East Java and Greater Jakarta. The scheme will target mothers and children in particular, with the WFP working with the Government and private sector partners to also provide health, hygiene and nutrition information. The most recent surveys indicate that an estimated 13 million children under the age of five are malnourished in Indonesia, and in some areas, such as the province of Nusa Tenggara Timor, 30 per cent of children in that age category are classed as severely malnourished. “Hunger is still a very real threat for too many poor Indonesians,” Mr. Banbury said. “Despite Indonesia’s impressive economic gains of recent years, there are still millions of poor families who cannot provide enough food for their children.” As part of the launch, WFP has recruited two well-known Indonesians, the investor and businessman Edwin Soeryadjaya and the actress and model Luna Maya, to help promote the initiative and raise public awareness. Mr. Soeryadjaya has become a member of the Asian Philanthropist Trust, which the WFP has established with some of the continent’s most influential business figures, while Ms. Maya becomes a WFP Ambassador Against Hunger. 29 November 2007The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has appealed for $98 million to run a three-year project to feed the hungry in Indonesia, where millions of poor children across the South-East Asian archipelago are malnourished. read more

Lululemon profit spikes as revenue soars 33 on strong sales

VANCOUVER — Lululemon Athletica Inc. is reporting a big increase in second-quarter earnings on the strength of soaring revenue and higher comparable store sales.The Vancouver-based retailer of high-end activewear said net earnings were $57.2 million or 39 cents per share, compared with $38.4 million or 26 cents per share in the second quarter of fiscal 2011.The boost in profit came as Lululemon reported that revenue rose 33% in the three months ended July 29 to $282.6 million from $212.3 million in the same quarter of fiscal 2011.[np-related /]Comparable store sales increased 15% on a constant dollar basis.Earnings were also boosted by a lower effective tax rate, thanks in part to a $7.2 million adjustment that reversed taxes provided for in two previous quarters.The Vancouver-based company raised its forecast for full-year net revenue to $ 1.345-$ 1.360 billion, up from last quarter’s forecast of $1.32-$1.34 billion.Lululemon said it expects full-year earnings per share from $1.76 to $1.81, up from its previously forecast $1.55 to $1.60.Shares, however, were down 4% at US$65.78 in premarket trading Friday morning.With files from Reuters read more

DMK AIDMK want India to boycott CHOGM

“Any high level participation or engagement from the Indian side in the CHOGM will not only embolden the Lankan regime but also incense public opinion and sentiment in Tamil Nadu on this very sensitive issue even further,” said Jayalalithaa in a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, strongly urging him not to attend the November 15-17 meeting in Colombo. The Prime Minister of Canada had already announced that he will not participate in the CHOGM, a top-level summit of the 54 member states, if Lanka failed to improve the efforts on rehabilitation of the war-affected Tamil population and fixing accountability for alleged crimes during the last phase of its war with Tamil rebels. After series of appeals and protests over India’s stand on Sri Lanka at the UNHRC that led to turmoil in Tamil Nadu and a political upheaval in Delhi, the Centre is under pressure from Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa and DMK president M Karunanidhi to boycott an important international summit slated to be held in Colombo later this year, the New India Express reported.Archrivals Jayalalithaa and Karunanidhi found themselves on the same platform when they raised the demand that the venue for Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) be shifted from Sri Lanka, failing which India should boycott the summit and lobby among member states to follow suit so as to put pressure on the Lankan government over allegations of genocide, war crimes and human rights violations. The issue also figured in the executive committee meeting of the DMK that was held on Monday. In a resolution, the former UPA ally, which had assumed a belligerent posture on dealing with Lanka, urged the Centre to take lead in boycotting the summit. “We urge the Commonwealth that the meeting should not be held in Colombo for whatever reasons. If our appeal is not met, India should stay away respecting the sentiments of Tamils across the world,” read the resolution. read more

Annan pledges UNs continued support for West African security development

In a message to the Heads of State and Government gathered in Dakar for the 25th summit meeting of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Mr. Annan said that as further proof of his commitment to work with ECOWAS and other regional organizations he had decided to open a UN Office for West Africa to support the region’s quest for sustainable peace and development. Yesterday, the Security Council welcomed the initiative as an important step to harmonize UN efforts in the subregion. “The United Nations will continue to be a close partner of ECOWAS in sustaining this momentum,” the Secretary-General said, noting that future challenges included the stabilization of the situation in Sierra Leone and the restoration of security and confidence in the Mano River Basin countries.”The United Nations is also committed to working with ECOWAS leaders to implement the New Partnership for the Development of Africa, and to mobilize international support for this vital endeavour,” he added.Mr. Annan’s message was delivered on his behalf by UN Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs Ibrahima Fall.In a recent example of UN-West African cooperation, two key documents adopted earlier this week in Dakar by ECOWAS foreign ministers on the fight against trafficking in human beings had been prepared jointly with the UN Office for Drug Control and Crime Prevention. read more

At UN Colombias Duque stands behind peace process vows to stamp out

As President of a country composed of over 40 per cent tropical rainforests, Mr. Duque said Colombia is one of the nations most exposed to the effects of climate change. It is clear, he said, that deforestation in the Amazon is “directly linked” to illegal armed groups seeking territories to engage in their illicit activities, which in turn are financed by drug trafficking. To put an end to this, he said that his Government had managed this year to reduce deforestation in the country by about 17 per cent. He added that earlier this month, Colombia, along with six other Amazonian countries, has signed the ‘Leticia Pact’, which aims to protect the world’s largest rainforest, which for weeks during this past summer had been devastated by wildfires.Turning to peacebuilding in Colombia, Mr. Duque highlighted the efforts to establish a “culture of legality” in the country, following the peace agreement signed in 2016 between the Government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC-EP). In this context, he said that the demobilization, disarmament and reintegration of former guerrillas was under way and included, among others, more than 25 projects which had benefited some 1,934 ex-combatants to date.“Today, it is a united nation that speaks to this House, confident in its ability to overcome violence through law,” he stated, and thanked the international community for the establishment of the UN Verification Mission in Colombia. However, Mr. Duque warned against those who “persist in the path of crime.” He told the Assembly that a few weeks ago, a “group of narco-terrorists” had tried to intimidate Colombia “under false ideological pretexts.” The Colombian Government had not and would not yield to the threats of this “group.”As proof of his determination to fight against narco-traffic, Mr. Duque noted that the Government had managed, for the first time in seven years, to limit the growth of coca cultivation in the country. “The more coca there is, the less peace there is,” he explained, calling the drug trade “predator of the environment,” and “fuel for terrorism” he added that to fight more effectively against the consequences of this traffic, he was working, alongside others towards creation of an international anti-corruption court.Turning to the situation in Venezuela, President Duque said that millions are “fleeing a once rich and now starved nation.” Mr. Duque affirmed that he had formal evidence of the support granted by the Venezuelan Government to criminal groups, who aimed to “attack Colombia.” He intended to hand over a dossier of this proof to the President of the General Assembly and the UN Secretary-General. read more

Introducing NBA Power Ratings And Playoff Odds

Starting this week, with the help of basketball analytics experts Jeremias Engelmann and Steve Ilardi, we’re rolling out weekly NBA power rankings fueled by ESPN’s Real Plus-Minus player ratings. These power ratings predict how well each team will perform over the coming week of games; we’ll also list each team’s projected end-of-season win total and its odds of making the playoffs.If you want to read more about how these ratings work, scroll below the rankings.Q: What do these ratings mean?A: They represent each team’s projected per-100 possession performance — schedule-adjusted and relative to league average — for the coming week, taking into account the quality of players on each roster, as well as injuries and expected minute allocations.Q: How is player quality measured?A: Using ESPN’s Real Plus-Minus (RPM), which attempts to isolate each player’s contribution to the team’s scoring margin while on the court by adjusting for the quality of his teammates and opponents faced. While the version of RPM listed at is a single-season metric, these power ratings use the more predictive multiyear version of RPM.Q: Where do the rosters come from?A: ESPN’s depth charts and injury wire.Q: Who generates the projected minute allocations?A: Jeremias Engelmann, the creator of Real Plus-Minus, provides the minute projections for each team.Q: How are these different from other computer power ratings available, such as the Hollinger Power Rankings?A: Most power ratings are, to some extent or another, backward-looking; they can only generate ratings using inputs from games the team has played. Given a large enough — and relevant enough — sample of played games, this is usually not a problem. But in the case of early-season rankings, or when a team experiences roster changes midseason (via trades or injuries), it takes time for traditional power ratings to catch up to the team’s new quality.These RPM power ratings, however, are based on the talent of the players on hand for each team. The advantage of this approach is that when a player is added to or subtracted from a team, a talent-based rating can adjust immediately, without waiting for new games to be played. In other words, injuries, trades and signings are instantly accounted for in these rankings.The other side of that coin is that, barring personnel changes, these ratings aren’t going to change drastically from week to week. RPM player talent estimates have a strong grounding in Bayesian statistics; and for veteran players, their prior rating carries a good deal of weight. So, while a team’s “statement win” in a given week might have a tangible effect on human or even recency-weighted computer power rankings, it’s unlikely to move the needle much with these ratings.Q: Why look at only the next week?A: The ratings can also be modified to use long-term minute projections for players who are injured but will return later in the season. For now, though, we’ve chosen to use the short-term version to get a good snapshot of where each team stands.Q: What are the projected wins and playoff odds?A: Those are generated via the aforementioned long-term RPM talent ratings, rather than the short-term numbers from the power rankings themselves. The long-term ratings are used to simulate every remaining game in the 2014-15 schedule, and the simulated results are added to the NBA’s actual standings. Expected wins are the average number of wins for the team at the end of the season across the simulations; playoff probability shows the percentage of simulations in which the team qualified for the postseason.Q: How good are these ratings?A: It’s hard to say, as this type of analysis — using aggregated player talent ratings to estimate team strength — doesn’t have a long track record. However, RPM itself (or at least its predecessor, xRAPM) is consistently the single most predictive advanced metric available to the public. And the FiveThirtyEight preseason projections, which used a similar methodology, are performing well in a prediction contest against other metrics. read more

Senior medics urge junior doctors to call off strike plans

first_imgJeremy Hunt will impose a new contract on junior doctors from October Credit:Neil Hall  But the first such strike was suspended following warnings that the health service could not operate safely if so many doctors walked out at short notice.A number of senior doctors have expressed concern about the dangers of pushing ahead with such lengthy periods of action. Until now, the longest strike has been two days. The meeting on Wednesday came after the head of the NHS said it was impossible to ensure no harm to patients, if up to 50,000 junior doctors abandon their posts for weeks on end – regardless of how much notice was given.In a public intervention last week, Simon Stevens said: “We should be in no doubt that it will not be possible to ensure there will be no harm to patients, even with several weeks’ notice, if we are talking about multiple weeks of up to 50,000 doctors not being available for emergency care at hospitals across this country.” 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. Junior doctors have been urged to consider calling off planned strikes by senior medics from the British Medical Association.A meeting of the union’s council -made up of around 30 leading doctors – on Wednesday urged trainee medics to think again before embarking on the biggest strikes in NHS history. It followed warnings from senior BMA figures that the plans could cost lives. The meeting is understood to have passed a motion urging the BMA’s junior doctors committee (JDC) to consider all actions short of the strikes, before planned industrial action goes ahead.  Jeremy Hunt  Sources close to the negotiations said several senior doctors felt the plans were too dangerous and did not have the backing of most junior doctors. However, one said they expect the more militant JDC to proceed with the strikes regardless, after holding their own discussions later this month. Thousands of medics have been asked to take part in a string of week-long strikes, starting on October 5, in action which was billed as “the trade union dispute of this century”. The BMA last night refused to comment on what was discussed at the meeting.  Leaked documents have recently revealed a limited appetite for strike action among junior doctors, who will sacrifice three weeks’ pay if they take part in the action.Junior doctors were initially balloted about a new contract last November, when they voted overwhelmingly in favour of industrial action to reject changes to pay and working patterns.However since then there have been a series of concessions, resulting in terms which the head of the union’s junior doctors committee described as “fair” and “safe.”In recent weeks, a number of junior doctors have expressed concern that they have never been asked if wish to strike over the current deal, let alone take part in week-long walkouts. Private polling of junior doctors has found just one in three support walkouts.last_img read more