first_imgOTTAWA – The Trump administration is likely to quickly trigger the process that will lead to renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, now that a new U.S. trade representative has been confirmed, say two Trudeau cabinet ministers heading Canada’s side of the talks.International Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne said he’ll likely get his first opportunity to meet face-to-face with Robert Lighthizer when the two attend an APEC minister’s summit this week.The U.S. Senate approved Lighthizer as President Donald Trump’s trade czar on Thursday.Soon after, Trump said it was his intention to quickly file a 90-day notice with Congress to kickstart the NAFTA talks with Canada and Mexico, a requirement under U.S. law.Canada maintains a solid footing for the negotiations, whenever they begin, Champagne told Global TV’s “West Block.”“We are ready, we are prepared, and we’re going to see what they put on the table,” he said.“But we’re going to be firm in our position as to protecting Canadian workers and protecting Canadian interests.”Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said she also expected to meet with Lighthizer soon, and that the pre-negotiation process would likely start “very soon.”With Lighthizer’s confirmation, “I think that the process ought to now get moving,” Freeland told CTV’s Question Period.“And we’re enthusiastic about that,” she added.“We’re keen to sit down at the table with our American and Mexican partners and to modernize what has been a really great trade agreement for our continent.”The Trump administration has signalled that it wants significant changes in a range of sectors, including dairy, lumber, automobiles, pharmaceuticals and the NAFTA dispute-resolution system.Trump himself has said he expects “massive” changes, telling The Economist last week that “big isn’t a good enough word” to describe the negotiations.But whether there is time for a “massive” restructuring of the long-standing trade deal is being questioned by observers, who point out that Mexico has expressed a desire to get a new deal by early next year, before the Mexican election.In the meantime, both Freeland and Champagne said Canada will continue pressing Ottawa’s position in behind-the-scenes discussions with political actors in the U.S.; that NAFTA has been a boon for jobs in both countries.last_img read more

first_imgThe Canadian Press EDMONTON — The growing scandal at an all-boys private school in Toronto made its way to the Grey Cup this morning with the coaches of both teams asked about it at a pre-game news conference.St. Michael’s College School has been rocked by allegations of assault and sexual assault by students, including violent hazing.Six boys are facing charges in connection with an alleged sexual assault captured on video that police sources say involved members of a school sports team.Calgary Stampeders coach Dave Dickenson said he and Ottawa Redblacks coach Rick Campbell were concerned at what had gone on, saying sports should be positive and inclusive.Campbell declined comment, saying he did not want to downplay a serious issue but needed more information on what happened.Since the scandal broke last week, a number of former students have come forward with allegations of “sexualized” hazing and the school has said recent incidents clearly indicate it has a problem.   last_img read more

first_imgA wave washes over evidence …… The reader must not get the impression that the Gujarat model went unchallenged. In fact, there were many voices apart from Sen and Drèze who wrote extensively about the limitations of the Gujarat model. Some pointed to the fact that growth rates in Gujarat were high even before Modi came to power. Others pointed out correctly that Gujarat’s social indicators lagged behind those of many other states. In human development rankings, states like Kerala did far better, while states such as Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu had their own growth stories to tell. I myself wrote about the inadequacies of the Gujarat model. From one of my articles in 2014, I will take the liberty of quoting a section that seemed to capture what many were saying at the time. While I and many others felt the Gujarat model represented a discredited ‘trickle-down’ model of economics, Jagdish Bhagwati was arguing that its growth had a ‘pull-up’ effect. That was in essence how the Gujarat model was positioned. As we learnt in 2014, this latter argument won spectacularly. Also Read – Torpedoing BengalThe preceding discussion provides some context for the transformation of Narendra Modi, the man tainted forever by the 2002 Gujarat riots, into a Thatcherite reformer and decisive leader who would pursue good governance, fight corruption and bring achhe din. It is now time to recall what Modi actually promised in specific terms to the people of India. What was the vision and the policies and programmes that gave concrete shape to the exhortation: ‘You gave Congress 60 years, give BJP just 60 months’? Also Read – Educational model of coexistenceModi fought two successful campaigns. While we all focus on his spectacular victory in the 2014 election, he also fought an intra-BJP battle against other contenders who attempted to thwart his rise. He won his party’s internal battle using a potent narrative with just the right amount of Hindu nationalism mixed with a heavy dose of development through ‘good governance’. He had already built up a formidable reputation as a business-friendly chief minister who constantly marketed the Gujarat model of development. And he was already seen as an unabashed standard-bearer of Hindutva since the 2002 Gujarat riots. The BJP establishment had no answer to Modi’s nationalist narrative that powered his inexorable rise to the top. In June 2013, he became chairman of the BJP’s Central Election Committee over the resistance of some of its most senior leaders such as L.K. Advani. Modi was well on his way. The ‘achhe din’ campaign Modi and BJP ran a terrific campaign promising to remake India with ‘minimum government, maximum governance’ and a pledge to usher in achhe din. In speeches at the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and the BJP’s national council meeting, Modi rolled out his vision for India’s economy. He attacked the UPA for the ‘despair’ prevailing in India and how the country had become a country of ‘underachievers’. Modi presented an all-encompassing vision from the social sectors to infrastructure development to job creation and high economic growth. On education, he said the BJP’s dream was ‘to have an IIM [Indian Institute of Management], an IIT [Indian Institute of Technology] and an AIIMS [All India Institute of Medical Sciences] in all states’. With an eye on middle-class voters, Modi talked up infrastructure and the rural to urban transition. He spoke of building 100 smart cities and bullet trains. He also promised to build hydroelectric power plants, manufacturing hubs, roads, airports and ports. The PM’s party also wanted greater FDI for job and asset creation in all sectors except multi-brand retail. The BJP spoke of generating 10 per cent growth, creating millions of jobs and focusing on much-needed skill development. It was soon clear to everyone that Modi’s impressive rhetorical style was endearing him to the public. While the speeches were not purely about economic development, it is fair to say that the development plank was central to the campaign. Yes, there were references to BJP’s religious and social causes. However, for the most part, the ‘achhe din’ campaign was about good governance, improving economic performance, creating jobs and transforming India into an economic powerhouse that would lift poor people out of poverty and usher in high standards of living for the middle class. The ‘Modifesto’ as BJP’s Manifesto With opinion polls consistently showing that Modi would lead the next government, the BJP’s manifesto, dubbed ‘Modifesto’, was to be the icing on the cake. However, the manifesto was inexplicably delayed. In fact, the BJP released its manifesto on the first day of polling. While not many people may read election manifestos, they are important for holding political parties to account. As widely reported at that time, key members of the committee in charge of drafting the manifesto were not too fond of Modi. Murli Manohar Joshi, the head of the manifesto committee, had to give up his Lok Sabha constituency, Varanasi, so that Modi could contest from there. Former finance minister Yashwant Sinha was back-benched and another senior leader, Jaswant Singh, was expelled. The delay in the release of the manifesto appeared to be strategic in nature, allowing Modi to grow stronger without revealing too many specifics about the delivery of promises. The manifesto generously spouted feel-good statements but remained very stingy about specifics. However, at that point, voters seemed to have made up their minds and any critique of the manifesto for its lack of detail, especially by the Congress, had very few takers. As a Frontline magazine article pointed out, Modi’s imprint on the manifesto was clear. While the images of most senior BJP leaders were on its cover, Modi’s popularity required help from neither the manifesto nor the party leaders gracing its cover. The manifesto boldly declared BJP to be a modern and inclusive party, relegating its pet projects such as the Ram Temple, uniform civil code and cow protection to the peripheries of the document. Frontline noted wryly, ‘So, for the BJP government, apparently both rural and urban areas are to be high priority. And all sections of people are to be empowered: the poor, the elderly, the new middle classes and entrepreneurs, rural dwellers, urban residents, Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Other Backward Classes, minorities, other weaker sections, women, children, senior citizens, the “specially-abled”, the youth, sportspersons, farmers and small-scale business owners.’ Frontline went on to ask: ‘Did anyone get left out in this breathless attempt at inclusion?’ It is helpful to see the manifesto’s broader context without drowning in its details. At the time of the election, I was doing all I could to run down this manifesto. Of course, as with any manifesto, there was a lot to genuinely criticize. However, I could also see the elegance of the presentation. The BJP contended that the next government had to deal with immediate concerns before building a framework supportive of systemic reforms. These reforms required a broader platform, hinting at the need for inclusion. To my mind, that was logical and smart. With immediate problems out of the way and a stronger and inclusive framework, India could leap forward. This presentation clearly captured the hearts and minds of many opinion makers; hence, the victory of hope over genuine fears was complete. (Excerpted with permission from The Great Disappointment; written by Salman Anees Soz; published by Penguin eBury Press. The excerpt here is a part of the chapter titled ‘The Promise’.)last_img read more

Brigadier Silva was the General Officer Commanding of the military’s controversial 58th Division that battled the LTTE in the Vanni in the final days of the conflict.There are multiple reports that strongly implicate Silva with war crimes. The UN Panel of Experts Report (2011) alleged that it was in surrendering to his Division that several LTTE members were shot dead (the infamous ‘White Flag Case’). According to the South Africa based International Truth and Justice Project (ITJP – 2018), eye witnesses placed Silva on site and claim he even shook hands with the LTTE political wing leaders who surrendered on 18 May 2009, only to be summarily executed shortly thereafter. It has called on the Office of the Missing Persons (OMP) to investigate this as the first case if it was serious about criminal accountability for enforced disappearances, and for Major General Silva to be questioned first. Troops under his command were also credibly accused of shelling hospitals and no-fire zone packed with women, children and elderly refugees. “Such appointment, particularly as Sri Lanka’s human rights record is about to be reviewed in Geneva in March 2019, is a clear message to the international community that the country cares little about its views and the potential consequences of its failures in faithfully implementing the UNHRC resolution 30, 34/1,” GTF said. Among all the Sri Lankan military officers implicated in war crimes, Silva is perhaps the most well-known. In many ways, he symbolised war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by the Sri Lankan armed forces during the last stages of the war and the extent to which the country is prepared to hide and protect its military from honest scrutiny and accountability, GTF added. When Silva was appointed as Sri Lanka’s Deputy Permanent Representative to UN in August 2010, it was viewed not just as Sri Lanka’s attempt to give the highest protection to the most notorious of its military officers, but also as a test of the international will with regards to the extent of their commitment in ensuring war time accountability.During his UN tenure, a law suit was filed against Silva by the relatives of Tamil victims in the District Court of the Southern District of New York, which as expected, Silva fended off invoking diplomatic immunity. Though the original attempts at preventing Silva’s appointment to the UN failed, a consolation of some sorts was achieved when Silva was debarred from participating in meetings of the Special Advisory Group related to UN peace keeping missions of which he was a member representing the Asian group of countries.The chairperson of the Group, Louise Frechette, a former UN Deputy Secretary General, informed Silva that his participation in the Group was ‘inappropriate’ and advised him to keep away from all ‘deliberations’ of the panel. GTF says the question is how the international community will face up to these challenges when Sri Lanka once again reports its progress on implementing resolution 30, 34/1 in March 2019, when it will have nothing to report on the criminal accountability of its armed forces.GTF notes the Silva episode must be one important factor when UNHRC member countries decide on appropriate responses and setting up mechanisms to achieve accountability and reconciliation in Sri Lanka for the post March 2019 period. (Colombo Gazette) Despite these setbacks, the rise and rise of Silva in the ranks of the Sri Lankan army continued unabated after his return from New York – first promoted as Adjunct General, Director of Operations and now a General and the army’s Chief of Staff. None of this is surprising, and indeed expected, by those who intimately understand Sri Lanka’s real lack of commitment to address criminal accountability involving its armed forces, particularly those prominent officers often venerated as war heroes despite their despicable record. The Global Tamil Forum (GTF) has raised concerns over the recent appointment of Shavendra Silva as the Chief of Staff of the Sri Lankan Army.In a statement, the influential London based diaspora group said the appointment of Silva has sent shock waves through the Tamil community, and to all those interested in human rights and accountability in Sri Lanka. read more

CALGARY — Soaring gasoline prices in Calgary and Edmonton have pushed the national average to a five-year high, according to an online price monitoring firm.Dan McTeague of says the national average price for regular gasoline was 136.0 cents per litre on Thursday, up from 105.2 cents on the same date last year and closing in on the previous high of 139.1 cents in June 2013.According to the website’s live price counter, prices in Calgary averaged 138.2 cents per litre on Thursday morning, up 11.6 cents from last week’s average and 43.8 cents from the same date a year ago.‘Gouging’ to blame for surging gas prices, not taxes, says B.C. Premier John HorganCanadian oil prices on track to rise steadily higher as transport problems ease and demand growsIran tells Trump: Please stop tweeting, you’re driving up oil pricesEdmonton prices were at 136.2 cents per litre, up 13 cents from last week and 47.8 cents from 12 months ago.McTeague says the biggest cause of this week’s surge in Alberta prices was “gas bar shenanigans,” as retailers who hadn’t passed on recent increases in wholesale prices decided to catch up all at once.He doesn’t expect the increases to stick, pointing out some stations in Edmonton are already retreating.A gas pump is shown at a filling station in Montreal. An online price monitoring firm says gasoline prices in Canada have spiked at the highest average price ever recorded thanks mainly to a 17-cent increase in the price per litre of regular fuel in Calgary. “These prices will turtle but the point is that we are testing levels that have never been seen before,” he said.He says average prices in Alberta are below the peak in September 2008 but most people are likely paying more for fuel because the current average is brought down by Costco, which tends to sell gasoline at cost to bring members into its stores.McTeague says price increases are also being driven by higher profit margins at refineries, stronger oil prices, the weak Canadian loonie and higher Canadian taxes on fuel.According to the website, prices on the Prairies have jumped the most compared to last year, with Alberta’s average price up 37 cents to 132.3 cents per litre as of Wednesday night, Manitoba up 36.2 cents and Saskatchewan ahead by 31.5 cents.The site says British Columbia’s average price was the highest in the land as of Wednesday at 144.2 cents, a rise of 30.9 cents in the past 12 months. Graham Hughes / THE CANADIAN PRESS read more

The numbers of migrants needed by developed receiving countries and the potential numbers willing to leave poorer sending countries are out of balance, Joseph Chamie, the Director of the Population Division in the UN’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs, told a press briefing at UN headquarters.Japan and most of Europe have been facing labour shortages, population aging and decline, and fertility rates well below replacement levels. “These have significant implications for pension schemes, health care, educational programmes and housing,” he said.On the other side of the demographic coin, migrants have been leaving sending countries because of difficulty finding employment at home, but “the supply of the potential migrants who are free to leave their homelands simply exceeds manifold the demand which is set by the receiving countries,” he said.Drawing a contrast, he said population growth in the 15 member countries of the European Union was 300,000 for 2003, but in India a similar population increase of 294,000 took just seven days.In Europe in the past most migrants moved north from southern Europe. Today the migrants, especially those entering illegally, are not only less well-educated and skilled than the native population, but are often vastly different ethnically, raising concerns about integration and assimilation, he said, adding that recent successes of the European right-wing have been based on opposition to such migration.The 9/11 attacks on the United States, as well as attacks elsewhere, have caused a tightening of entry procedures in several countries. The United States is estimated to have 8 million to 10 million migrants without legal entry papers, and Europe has a similar number, showing that cross-border controls are not being managed well, Mr. Chamie said.He noted that the Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Air and Sea, a supplement to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, entered into force today, giving governments a legal tool against traffickers. read more

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is profoundly disturbed by news reports alleging that children might have been among those abused in detention centres and prisons in Iraq, a spokesman said today. “Although the news reports have not been independently substantiated, they are alarming nonetheless,” UNICEF spokesman Damien Personnaz told a news briefing in Geneva, adding that any mistreatment, sexual abuse, exploitation or torture of children in detention is a violation of international law. Mr. Personnaz’s statement was the latest reaction by a UN body to widely disseminated reports and photographs of abuse of detainees by United States-led coalition personnel in Iraq. Last week Acting UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Bertrand Ramcharan expressed revulsion regarding the reports and photographs. The detention or imprisonment of a child must be used only as a measure of last resort and for the shortest appropriate period of time, and for their safety and protection children should never be incarcerated with adults, Mr. Personnaz said. “All persons in detention must be treated with humanity and with respect for their inherent dignity as human beings,” he added. “In particular, States had an obligation to protect children and to ensure that their officials were aware of, trained in, and complied with the relevant international standards.” read more

The President of the General Assembly today urged representatives of civil society to help shape the debate on migration and development, especially how to harness the benefits of this phenomenon for the common good and for the prosperity of all nations, rich and poor. “If current trends continue, migration may enhance current inequalities between various categories of States,” Vuk Jeremić said in remarks to the informal interactive hearings on international migration and development held at UN Headquarters in New York.“It could even result in what some demographers have called the ‘spectre of ghost countries – of nations that will simply become devoid of necessary human resources to carry on in the longer term’,” he added.Globalization has resulted in the advent of a new era of mobility, said the President. Over the last decade, the total number of international migrants has increased from 150 million to 214 million, creating both challenges and opportunities for societies throughout the world. In this context, the Assembly will hold, on 3 and 4 October, the second High-level Dialogue on International Migration and Development in New York, following the first one held in 2006.“I would therefore strongly encourage you to discuss not only how you can shape preparations for the forthcoming High-level Dialogue, but also how to influence the way Member States could incorporate the issue of migration into their debate on how to bridge the gap between overall rich and poor countries,” Mr. Jeremić stated.He noted that the UN has created agencies to address many pressing global issues – from arms trafficking, nuclear power, and human rights, to telecommunications, intellectual property, and climate change. “But there is no international mechanism that seeks to regulate migration flows,” he continued. “No accepted criteria have been established; no universal guidelines endorsed. There is literally no global governance on an issue that will fundamentally affect the future of virtually every nation on Earth.“I believe that in the time ahead, Member States should begin their work on creating a basis for coordination on a topic that stands at the crux of sustainable development, as to ensure that migration does not turn into a zero-sum game, where the progress of any nation is held back by that of another.”He also noted that migration is one of the few constants of human history. “All of us trace our roots to somewhere else – some have to go back just one or two generations; others, further rearward. But virtually everyone’s forbearers, at some point over the course of millennia, took the courageous and difficult decision to give up everything that was familiar, in order to seek greater opportunity in territories unknown.” The subject of migration has stirred passionate debates, because for all the good it can bring, it also generates social tensions, the President stated, adding that recent arguments about how to integrate newcomers in a number of Member States have proven especially controversial. In his remarks to the meeting, Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson said the benefits of migration can only be fully harnessed, and the situation of migrants tangibly improved, with “sustained and strong partnerships as well as strategic cooperation between different actors.”The role of civil society is fundamental, he added. Labour unions and employers’ organizations play a critical role in immigration reform; advocacy groups ensure that the voices of migrants are heard and heeded; diaspora organizations highlight the diversity of many contributions which migrants can make to societies; and the academic community has greatly contributed to refuting long-held myths and prejudices by grounding the migration debate in evidence. “The challenge is to share this evidence with the public at large to dispel negative perceptions and often-stated stereotypes,” said Mr. Eliasson. “We need to engage the media to make the public and policy makers aware of the vital and positive role migrants can play in helping build and invigorate nations, economies and cultures.”The deputy UN chief highlighted the need to: improve engagement within and cooperation between States; ensure that migration policies are based on facts; and promote the integration of migrants into societies and economies.Additional priorities are to coordinate national migration policies to ensure that labour market and development considerations are taken into account when planning future migration, and to develop a framework for managing migration from countries and regions affected by crisis and violence. read more

first_imgMartin McGuinness will be “difficult to forgive” in the eyes of many, a priest has told mourners at the former IRA leader’s funeral.The Irish Republican politician was remembered by mourners including Bill Clinton, the former US president, at a ceremony in the Long Tower church, Londonderry. The coffin of Northern Ireland's former deputy first minister and ex-IRA commander Martin McGuinness is carried up Barrack Street The son of former Northern Ireland Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness, Emmet McGuinness (centre left), helps to carry the coffin “That’s a great political story but I’m the last American president that ever lived in a house without an indoor toilet and it’s very much overrated, except for its political value,” Mr Clinton said.Earlier thousands lined the streets of Mr McGuinness’s home city as his coffin was carried from his home in Bogside to the church.Peter Robinson and Arlene Foster, the former Democratic Unionist Stormont first ministers,  also attended the requiem mass. There was a round of applause inside the church as Mrs Foster took her seat.The symbolism of the leader of unionism attending a former IRA man’s funeral is highly significant.While Mr McGuinness was leader of the IRA it carried out attacks including a remote controlled IRA bomb near Sligo which killed Lord Louis Mountbatten. Hours later, 18 paratroopers from the British Army were killed in an IRA ambush in Co Down.  But he also helped broker a historic peace deal, the Good Friday Agreement, in 1998. “Republicans were not blameless, and many people right across the community find it difficult to forgive and impossible to forget,” he said.”By any standards, Martin McGuinness was a remarkable man and his life was a remarkable journey. The values he had, the principles he championed are still very much alive.” The coffin of former Northern Ireland Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness is carried through the Bogside area of Londonderry Chief celebrant Father Michael Canny recalled the many tributes made to the Sinn Fein politician since his death, but admitted that for many, his leadership of the IRA would be “difficult to forgive”. Mr Adams amongst mourners at the funeral Credit: REUTERS/Phil Noble Mr Adams amongst mourners at the funeral  Sinn Fein’s Michelle O’Neill, Gerry Adams and Mary Lou McDonald speak at Derry City CemeteryCredit:Brian Lawless/PA Wire Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. The coffin of Northern Ireland’s former deputy first minister and ex-IRA commander Martin McGuinness is carried up Barrack StreetCredit:Brian Lawless/PA Wire Sinn Fein's Michelle O'Neill, Gerry Adams and Mary Lou McDonald speak at Derry City Cemetery He added: “There was not a bad Martin McGuinness or a good Martin McGuinness. There was simply a man, like every other decent man or woman, doing his best.”Mr Clinton also delivered a heartfelt eulogy, as he told modern leaders to copy Mr McGuinness’s “honourable compromises”. His comments came before Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams, speaking at the graveside, challenged those who described Mr McGuinness as a “terrorist”.”Martin McGuinness was not a terrorist. Martin McGuinness was a freedom fighter,” he said. “He was also a political prisoner, a negotiator, a peacemaker, a healer.” Clinton arrives at the service. McGuinness was once chief of staff of the IRA but later became Sinn Fein's chief negotiator in the talks that led to the Good Friday agreement bringing peace to Northern Ireland Former US President Bill Clinton and former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern (left) arriving for the funeral of Northern Ireland’s former deputy first minister and ex-IRA commander Martin McGuinnessCredit:Niall Carson/PA Clinton arrives at the service. McGuinness was once chief of staff of the IRA but later became Sinn Fein’s chief negotiator in the talks that led to the Good Friday agreement bringing peace to Northern IrelandCredit:Dan Kitwood/Getty Images Europe “Most of the publicity Martin got as a politician was the very absurd notion that he actually got along with Ian Paisley. I thought it was great that he got a word in edgeways, I never could,” he said.Mr Clinton’s speech was also interspersed with applause and laughter as he recalled Mr McGuinness’ “marriage” to “Gerry” Adams and compared his own upbringing in Arkansas with Mr McGuinness’ early years as one of seven children in a Bogside house with no indoor toilet. The coffin of former Northern Ireland Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness is carried through the Bogside area of LondonderryCredit:PAUL FAITH/AFP/Getty Images The son of former Northern Ireland Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness, Emmet McGuinness (centre left), helps to carry the coffinCredit:PAUL FAITH/AFP/Getty Images He made a number of jokes as he spoke to mourners, including admitting he could never get a word in when he spoke to Ian Paisley. Former US President Bill Clinton (centre) and former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern (left) arriving for the funeral of Northern Ireland's former deputy first minister and ex-IRA commander Martin McGuinness, at St Columba's Church Long Tower, in Londonderry. Mr McGuinness. 66, died on Monday from a rare genetic condition. Speakers paid tribute to his efforts in the Northern Irish peace process, which led to the Good Friday agreement, signed in 1998.last_img read more

Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Related$550M cocaine bust: GRA agent, others refused bail, remanded to prisonMay 31, 2017In “Court”$500M cocaine bust: CANU seeking popular biker, businessmenMay 15, 2017In “Crime”$550M drug bust: Stephen Vieira arrestedMay 20, 2017In “Crime” (CMC) The Guyana Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU) says it is seeking international assistance as investigations continue into the recent G$550 million drug bust in East Bank Essequibo.The police report that on May 14, CANU agents conducted a raid at a premises in the area and searched a truck laden with several pallets of 1×6 dressed lumber prepared for export to the United States. According to CANU, several boards were drilled randomly and revealed a white substance suspected to be cocaine.The cocaine being unearthed (Stabroek News photo)Following the discovery, the truck, its driver and porters were escorted to CANU headquarters where a detailed search of the cargo was completed. The search revealed cocaine in random boards scattered among genuine boards in each pallet. The compromised boards all had a dug out cavity with vacuum sealed plastic packets containing the drug.CANU said its investigation revealed that the truck was hired to pick up and transport the lumber from a saw-mill and then transport it to a wharf in Georgetown. Three men – Hakeem Mohamed, Tazim Gafoor and Nazim Gafoor — were held after the discovery but they were subsequently released when the 72-hour maximum period for detention without charge expired.The investigators did not apply for an extension since they did not gather any new information. The police later held motorbiker Stephen Vieira whose name was found on several shipping documents. Vieira who was in the country at the time of the bust, had travelled to Jamaica via Suriname and Trinidad, one day after the bust was made.He returned to Guyana late last week and was arrested on arrival at the Cheddi Jagan Airport. When he appeared in court on Tuesday, he was released from custody, but according to CANU, he remains under investigation.Following Vieria’s release CANU said a digital video recording device was retrieved from Nazim Gafoor but the information was erased.As such, CANU is now seeking international assistance in retrieving the data that may have been therein,” the agency said in a release on Tuesday.CANU also confirmed that Vieria’s girlfriend, who was arrested and questioned, was also released from custody.However, the owner of the saw-mill, Narine Lall, has not yet been contacted or questioned. Meanwhile, CANU has appealed for patience as investigators work to ensure the anti-drug agency does not lose the expected court case.“It would be expedient to charge persons only after we have enough evidence to link the parties and the contraband all with a view to ensuring a successful prosecution rather than to rush and come up short in the courts,” the agency said. read more

first_imgBayern Munich manager Niko Kovac is confident that James Rodriguez will remain at the club for the new season, despite reports suggesting that Real Madrid are considering recalling him from his loan dealThe Colombia international left the Spanish giants last summer to join Bayern in a two-year loan deal with the club paying €6.5m per season.But Rodriguez has been linked with a surprise return to Real this summer following the departure of Zinedine Zidane with the 27-year-old understood to be considering the idea of returning to his parent club and making a go of things under new manager Julen Lopetegui.In a morning press conference, Kovac commented on the rumours that have been going around the Bundesliga giants of late and gave the media his verdict on Rodriguez’s future.“We have him on a current loan deal which is still valid. It will end, either in this direction if we say, ok, we will not take up the option, or we do,” he said, as quoted by ESPN’s Mark Lovell.Sergio Ramos, Real MadridZidane reveals Sergio Ramos injury concern for Real Madrid Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Zinedine Zidane has put Sergio Ramos’ availability for Real Madrid’s trip to Sevilla next weekend in doubt after withdrawing him against Levante.Niko Kovac quotes on James Rodriguez in full. “We have him on a current loan deal which is still valid. It will end, either in this direction if we say, ok, we will not take up the option, or we do.”— Mark Lovell (@LovellLowdown) July 19, 2018Rodriguez scored eight goals in 39 appearances in all competitions for Bayern last season.last_img read more

first_imgLiverpool boss Jurgen Klopp seemed less concerned when asked about taking a break from Premier League action to play in the FA Cup.The Reds travel to the Molineux to face Wolverhampton Wanderers on Monday, on the back of their 2–1 loss to Manchester City in the league last Thursday.Speaking about the lack of opportunity to get an immediate response to the City loss in the league, Klopp said, according to the club’s official website:“I don’t think about things I can’t change too much.”“I don’t know, it’s OK, it’s like it is, we’ve known it for a while, so it’s not that I feel we have to react immediately in the league because that would feel a little bit like we are insecure about ourselves. We don’t know exactly how it will happen.”Jadon Sancho, Borussia DortmundCrouch: Liverpool could beat Man United to Jadon Sancho Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Peter Crouch wouldn’t be surprised to see Jadon Sancho end up at Liverpool one day instead of his long-term pursuers Manchester United.“When the draw came up and we saw Wolves it was like, ‘wow, thank you very much’ and it’s away. Then we played there and it was really difficult. Now we have to go there again and so it’s a really tough draw and nobody was looking forward to it and saying at the moment of the draw, ‘nice game, let’s go there and win’.”“We have Brighton to come after and it is always a tough place to go, they’ve had a fantastic season. Do I want play Brighton directly after Man City? I don’t know, I didn’t think about it.”“We have now between the Premier League games nine days or so, and in between is a very, very tough FA Cup game. I didn’t think about it, it’s OK like it is.”last_img read more

first_imgSummit Ascent Holdings Ltd has completed its HK$297 million fundraising exercise after successfully placing 300 million newly issued shares.In a Monday announcement, the company confirmed it had placed all available shares at HK$1.01 per share, raising HK$297 million in the process which will be used to “further develop the hotel and gaming business” at its Russian integrated resort, Tigre de Cristal, located in the Primorye Economic Zone. Load More Suncity Group looking to develop new resort hotel in Okinawa, Japan after US$10 million land purchase Suncity launches Japanese website, unveils Wakayama IR concept RelatedPosts The transaction also sees majority shareholder Suncity Group’s stake reduced from 29.68% to 24.74%, of which 22.01% is held by its wholly-owned subsidiary Victor Sky Holdings Limited.Suncity acquired its majority stake in Summit Ascent from Taiwan’s First Steamship Company Limited in April. JW Marriott at Galaxy Macau named venue and Galaxy Entertainment Group named Venue Sponsor for 2019 Asian Gaming Power 50 Black Tie Gala Dinnerlast_img read more

first_imgAnother image shown was of a new weapon called the Charge Rifle. The weapon is from the Titanfall games — Apex Legends takes place in the same universe. In those games, it allowed human pilots to do big damage to the giant mechs called Titans by charging up the weapon for a few seconds.  How is Apex Legends different from Fortnite and PUBG? 2:42 Gaming Respawn Entertainment didn’t immediately reply to a request for comment.  There was also an image of a Halloween outfit for one of the Legends, Gibby, shown during the presentation. Tagscenter_img 0 Share your voice Post a comment Now playing: Watch this: A new character is coming to Apex Legends. Respawn Entertainment Apex Legends season 2 will have a new character out soon by the name of Crypto and a leak gives players the first clear look at the next Legend. The pictures come from a presentation for the game at the Gamestop GME Conference happening in Nashville, Tennessee.A Reddit user posted the leaked image of Crypto on the Apex Legends subreddit Tuesday. The picture shows the design for the character in his entirety. Crypto made a partial appearance in the Apex Legends season 2 trailer on June 27, where only his hands and part of his outfit were shown. The user says there were no details provided during the presentation about the battle royale game made by an EA representative, but did point out that behind Crypto it says “season 3,” indicating the character will not be released until developer Respawn Entertainment ends the current season at the end of September.last_img read more

first_imgNew Delhi : The owner of a chemist shop and his associate were arrested by the police for allegedly selling medicines without prescriptions to minors at inflated rates, officials said on Tuesday. The owner of the shop in south Delhi’s Kotla Mubarakpur area, Vivek Kumar Singh and salesman Ranjit Singh were caught red handed while selling medicines to a minor without prescription. On Monday, a juvenile had approached the police and filed a complaint, saying the owner of ‘Om Sai Medicos’ at Sher Singh Bazaar, was selling medicines to juveniles without prescription, police said. Also Read – National Herald case: Officer bearers of Congress were cheats, Subramanian Swamy tells court Advertise With Us “The police raided the shop and the accused was caught red handed,” said Vijay Kumar, Deputy Commissioner of Police (south). During interrogation, the accused disclosed that the combination of certain drugs and injections creates a new psychotropic effect. “These injections were meant for relieving pain of cancer patients. But the duo were selling it to juveniles and drug addicts at higher prices without prescription,” the officer added. The drugs usually costs around Rs 70-80. But the accused used to sell them without prescription for Rs 250, police saidlast_img read more

first_imgJust after the Great Indian Sale, e-commerce major Amazon has launched yet another shopping fest. Having started on February 14, its EMI fest will continue till February 20.Under this seven-day EMI fest, Amazon offers EMI deals on various smartphones, laptops, televisions, refrigerators, washing machines, laptops, air conditioners, microwave ovens, chimneys, dishwashers and furniture. The e-retailer gives No Cost EMI and 10 percent cashback on purchasing the select products with ICICI credit cards.To avail the offers, Amazon kept a minimum purchase of Rs 7,000. The cashback amount will be credited to the customer’s account on April 20.Tempted to go on a shopping spree on Amazon? Now, shop easily and pay in installments. Here are the 10 best products to buy during the Amazon EMI fest.1. Sanyo 123.2cm (49 inches) Full HD LED IPS TV (Black)M.R.P.: 46,990.00 | Deal Price: 31,999.00 EMI starts at 1,569.00 BUY NOW2. OnePlus 5T (Midnight Black 6GB RAM + 64GB memory)Price: 32,999.00 EMI starts at 1,569.00 BUY NOW3. Dell Vostro 14 7th Gen Core i5 Laptop (14-inch/8GB/1TB/Windows 10 Home), BlackM.R.P.: 44,990.00 | Deal Price: 43,990.00 EMI starts at 2,091.00 BUY NOW4. LG 190 L 3 Star Direct-Cool Single-Door Refrigerator (Marine Heart)M.R.P.: 16,890.00 | Deal Price: 13,299.00 EMI starts at 554.00 BUY NOW5. Voltas 1.4 Ton 3 Star (2017) Split AC (Copper, White/Black)M.R.P.: 40,490.00 | Deal Price: 27,990.00 EMI starts at 1,331.00 BUY NOW6. Haier 5.8kg Fully-Automatic Top Loading Washing Machine (White)M.R.P.: 14,990.00 | Deal Price: 12,117.00 EMI starts at 576.00 BUY NOW7. Bajaj 20 L Grill Microwave Oven (Black)M.R.P.: 6,500.00 | Deal Price: 4,490.00 EMI starts at 223.00 BUY NOW8. Spacewood Joy Queen Size Bed (Woodpore Finish, Natural Wenge)M.R.P.: 26,128.00 |  Deal Price: 8,999.00 EMI starts at 428.00 BUY NOW9. Apple iPhone 7 (Black, 32GB)M.R.P.: 49,999.00 | Deal Price: 42,999.00 EMI starts at 2,044.00 BUY NOW10. Onida 124.46cm (50 inches) 50UIB 4K UHD LED Smart TV (Black)M.R.P.: 68,990.00 | Deal Price: 46,999.00 EMI starts at 2,519.00 BUY NOWlast_img read more

first_imgAt least 67 people were confirmed dead in tragic fire at Chwakbazar on Wednesday night, officials confirmed, although unofficial reports indicated higher death toll.According to witnesses, the fire victims could not even run away from the spot as the incident took place within moments. The spot was crammed with crowd and vehicles.Bodies of most of the victims were burnt beyond recognition. Inspector general of police Md Jabed Patwary informed the media that 37 bodies were identified as of Thursday evening.“The corpses have turned into skeletons. Some are burnt beyond recognition. DNA test is needed to identify those bodies,” DMCH’s National Burn and Plastic Surgery Unit chief coordinator Samanta Lal Sen told Prothom Alo.Fire service officials blamed combustible chemical (body spray), inadequate water supply in the narrow alley and inability of fire fighters to reach the spot with equipments as the reasons of such a huge number of deaths..Local traders, however, did not want to admit that chemical was behind the fire. Some of them said the fire was caused by a gas cylinder blast — a claim that was echoed by the industries minister. Others claimed that the fire ensued from electric transformer blast.Industries minister Nurul Majid Mahmud Humayun said the fire originated from a gas cylinder blast, reports UNB.He said Wahed Mansion, a four-storey building which caught the fire first, housed a hotel while there was a vehicle with gas cylinders for delivering those to households. “The explosion took place from any of them.”But a fire service official maintained that they did not find any evidence of gas cylinder blast.Dhaka Power Distribution Company’s lineman Mobarak Hossain refuted the ‘theory of transformer blast’ saying there was no transformer in the area where the fire broke out.The four other transformers of the adjacent area are also intact.Fire service authorities did not make any comment about the origin of the fire. However, fire service department director Shakil Newaz told Prothom Alo that it would take at least 7 days..Meanwhile, 11 people were admitted to DMCH.Death toll may rise further as some of them are in critical conditions, said DMCH sources.Near and dear ones of the victims gathered at the DMCH and tried to identify or looked to bodies throughout the day on Thursday.People who survived the fire but had family members missing started thronging the morgue since morning.Thirty-six of the identified deceased are named as Arafat, Shahadat Hossain, Helal Uddin, Enamul Haque Kazi, Mosharraf Hossain, Kamal Hossain, Siddique Ullah, Wasi Uddin, Syed Khabir, Jummon, Ali Hossain, Yamin Khan Roni, Morshed Alam, Mithu, Sajib, Hafez Md Kawsar, Abdur Rahim alias Dulal, Mahir, Sonia, Abu Bakkar Siddique, Imtiaz Imroze Rasu, Masud Rana, Mabubur Rahman Raju, Ashraf Haque Rajan, Omar Faruk, Md Ali, Apu Raihan, Jasim Uddin, Md Raju, Md Nayan Khan, Ayesha Khatun, Anwar Hossain, Siam Arafat, Mojibur Hawladar, Alauddin Mahi and Nur Hossain.last_img read more

first_imgOn Jan. 19, Morgan State University (MSU) announced the award of a three-year, $716,700 grant from Lumina Foundation to support the university’s implementation of the Historically Black Colleges and Universities Student Success Project. The project is a proactive endeavor to implement strategies that research suggests can increase completion rates, while improving outcomes for historically underserved students. The HBCU Student Success Project, which was designed to expand on positive steps already taken by the university, will utilize data drawn from a comprehensive student analytic system to improve academic, financial and social supports. The project also includes technical assistance and evaluation support for the university.“We are fortunate to have this opportunity to expand our relationship with Lumina Foundation by being selected as one of the standout HBCUs participating in this student success project,” said MSU President David Wilson. “In spring 2016, we launched Morgan’s 50 by 25 Campaign as a university-wide effort to increase graduation rates at Morgan to 50 percent by the year 2025, and with Lumina’s support over the next three years, we are hoping to improve student retention by 4 percent while significantly increasing on-time and six-year completion rates on the road to that goal.”Morgan State is one of three prominent HBCUs and the only public university among those selected to be awarded grants totaling more than $1.5 million. The other HBCU participants involved in the project are Dillard University and Howard University.The Lumina Foundation is an independent, private organization based in Indianapolis whose mission is increasing access to higher education. According to the foundation, its goal is to prepare people for informed citizenship and for success in a global economy. “Lumina Foundation is pleased to support Morgan State University in its efforts to improve student outcomes,” said Danette Howard, Lumina’s chief strategy officer and senior vice president in a statement. “Morgan State University will concentrate over the next three years to utilize improved student data to not only increase student persistence and completion but also to eliminate attainment gaps for Pell-eligible students. Morgan State University has developed a comprehensive plan to reach these outcomes. We are very excited to see the results and learn from their work.”last_img read more

first_imgStory Links In each of Scott’s first two seasons he coached an All-Sun Belt Conference player in Kenny Cattouse and DuJuan Harris. Harris ranked second in the conference in rushing in 2008 with 1,077 yards and played five seasons in the NFL. In Scott’s last season at Troy he coached Shawn Southward, who rushed for 602 yards and 12 touchdowns, to Sun Belt Conference Freshman of the Year honors. Before his stint in the Bluegrass State, Scott spent three seasons at Texas Tech from 2010-12. While the Red Raiders have a reputation for their explosive passing game, Scott’s running backs made significant contributions to the offense as well. The Red Raiders rushed for 135.7 yards per game and scored 52 rushing touchdowns during his three seasons. Scott was an integral part of an offensive staff in 2016 that was one of the most explosive in the nation, setting more than 40 individual and team records.  Coaching one of the most inexperienced positions, Scott’s tight ends made considerable contributions as the Tar Heels won eight games and played Stanford in the Sun Bowl. Tucker, who was named first-team All-ACC freshman by Athlon, and Fritts averaged more than 10 yards per reception.  Scott was a part of an offensive turnaround at Troy, inheriting an offense that ranked 66th in rushing offense and 77th in total offense prior to his arrival. In just one season, Troy moved to 35th nationally in rushing offense with 182.6 yards per game and 16th in total offense with 452.8 yards per contest. In his final season at Troy, the Trojans ranked third in the nation in total offense. In Scott’s second season at Texas Tech, the improvement continued as the Red Raiders were on pace to have their best year rushing since the late 1990s before Tech’s top two rushers both sustained season-ending injuries. The Red Raider running backs still rushed for 1,516 yards on the season. Scott returned to Chapel Hill after coaching at Kentucky, where he mentored the running backs from 2013-15 and was the run game coordinator in 2014-15. He helped develop a solid Wildcat running attack that featured Stanley Williams, who averaged 7.1 yards per carry, and Jojo Kemp, who gained 5.7 per attempt. LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Chad Scott, who spent the last three seasons at North Carolina, has been named the running backs coach at Louisville, head coach Scott Satterfield announced Friday. A native of Plant City, Fla., Scott played at Kentucky before transferring to North Carolina and lettering in 2004 and 2005. He earned first-team all-ACC honors from after rushing for 796 yards and eight touchdowns as a senior. Scott, who made his first career start against No. 4 Miami, rushed for a career-high 175 yards on 25 carries and scored twice in a 31-28 victory. Scott spent time in the National Football League with Cleveland and Pittsburgh before returning to his alma mater in 2006 as a graduate assistant video analyst. Scott entered the coaching profession at Troy as an assistant coach for running backs from 2007-09, helping lead the Trojans to three consecutive Sun Belt Conference Championships and a pair of appearances in the New Orleans Bowl. Scott inherited a running attack that ranked 115th in rushing offense in 2009 at 84.0 yards per game, improving that mark in his first season to 75th nationally with 141.3 yards per contest. The team’s leading rusher, Baron Batch, was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers and spent three years with the organization. Scott graduated from UNC in 2004 with a degree in sociology. He is married to the former Shambrica Jones, who played basketball at Kentucky, and the couple has a daughter, Kori, and a son, Jakobe.SCOTT AT A GLANCECoaching Experience2006: North Carolina (graduate assistant/video analyst)2007-09: Troy (running backs)2010-12: Texas Tech (running backs)2013: Kentucky (running backs)2014-15: Kentucky (running backs/run game coordinator)2016-18: North Carolina (tight ends)Playing Experience2000-01: Kentucky (RB)2002-04: North Carolina (RB) In 2012, Texas Tech averaged 139.9 yards per game on the ground with three backs rushing for more than 400 yards each. Texas Tech won the TicketCity Bowl over Northwestern following the 2010 season and defeated Minnesota in the Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas in 2012. Prior to joining Satterfield’s staff, Scott served as the tight ends coach for the Tar Heels in 2016-18.During Scott’s tenure with the Tar Heels, the tight end position saw a lot of production, highlighted by Carl Tucker’s 16.6 yards per catch average last season, and Brandon Fritts’ 25 receptions for 177 yards and four scores in 2018. Alma Mater: North Carolina, 2004Hometown: Plant City, Fla.Birthdate: June 11, 1981Wife: Shambrica (Jones)Daughter: KoriSon: Jakobe Print Friendly Versionlast_img read more

first_imgColin was a scorching 4-1 in Week 13 for one of his best weeks of a solid season.  He’s 36-23-1 on the year, and can’t wait to keep the momentum rolling with a bunch of winners this week.Here are Colin’s Week 14 NFL plays:Vikings (-2.5) at Panthers – Colin likes Minnesota as 2.5-point road favorites against an inconsistent Carolina. The Vikings are 5-0 ATS over their last 5 games, while the Panthers are just 2-3-1 ATS over their last 6 at home. A Carolina offense that’s failed to gain 300 Yards 7 times this year will face a Minny D that just held the Falcons offense to seasons lows in Yards, Pass Yards, and 3rd Down %, on the road. It could be a long day.Once labeled a liability, Case Keenum is just the 3rd player in Vikings History to have a Passer Rating of 100 in 4 straight games, and completed all 13 passes in the 2nd Half in Atlanta. He’s the best QB in this matchup. Take the Vikings, lay the 2.5. 28-23, Minnesota. Advertisement 3. 49ers (+3) at Texans – Colin likes Jimmy G and the Niners getting a field goal on the road in Houston. 49ers are 5-2 ATS over their last 7 on the road, and Garoppolo completed over 70% of his passes in his 1st start for San Francisco. He should carve up Texans Pass D that has allowed opposing QB’s to throw for 13 TD’s, only 3 INT’s, and a Passer Rating of 107.4 in their last 6. The 49ers have averaged 126.7 Rush YPG in winning 2 of their last 3, while Houston has allowed 168.5 Rush YPG in their last 2 games (both losses).Take Jimmy G and the Niners, the field goal, and the outright win. 28-26, San Fran. 4. Titans at Cardinals (+3) – Colin likes Arizona as a home underdog against Marcus Mariota and Tennessee. The Titans are 1-4 over their last 5 on the road and 2-3 overall in their last 5, while averaging just 14.6 PPG, 248.8 YPG, and almost 3 Giveaways per game. In his last 4 road games, Mariota has 2 touchdowns, 8 picks, and a pathetic passer rating of only 62.1. Arizona has forced 6 turnovers in their last 3 games.Since the bye in Week 8, Larry Fitzgerald is averaging 10.2 Targets/PG, 7.4 Rec/PG, 76.8 YPG, 2 TD, and he could do damage against a Titans D that has allowed 7 Passing TD’s in their last 4. Take the Cardinals, the field goal, and the home win. 28-20, Arizona.center_img 2. Bears (+5.5) at Bengals – Give Colin Mitchell Trubisky and the Bears getting 5.5 on the road against a beat-up Bengals team in his favorite pick of the week. Trubisky is coming off his career high in Passer Rating (117.2), and will face a Bengals secondary without Adam Jones (groin) and Dre Kirkpatrick (concussion), who were injured in Week 13. Safety George Iloka will also be out while serving his one game suspension for his helmet-to-helmet hit on Antonio Brown.Look for Trubisky to manage the game and for the Bears’ 12th ranked rushing offense to pound it  it on the ground against Cincy’s 28th ranked Rushing Defense. Take the Bears the 5.5, and the upset. 24-23, Chicago. 5. Redskins (+6) at Chargers – Colin has been talking up the Chargers lately, but he likes Washington getting 6 on the road at the NFL’s best soccer stadium. The Redskins are 12-5 ATS over their last 17 on the road, while the Chargers are 2-8 ATS over their last 10 at “home.”Kirk Cousins’ 105.1 road Passer Rating is the 5th best in the NFL, and he leads the league in 25-yard + completions (33). L.A. just allowed 5 25-Yd+ Completions to the pathetic Browns last week. Cousins will keep it close enough to cover getting 6, but the Chargers win a close one, 27-26.? Blazin’ 5 is 36-23-1 through Week 13 ?@ColinCowherd makes his Week 14 picks? and they’re ?— Herd w/Colin Cowherd (@TheHerd) December 8, 2017last_img read more