Category: zzqmgvgp

Delhi Police probes fraudulent racket

first_imgNew Delhi: The Delhi Police Economic Offences Wing (EOW) has registered a case on the complaint of Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India asking them to probe fraudulent racket.According to police, the case was registered on June 11 on the complaint from MHA. The complaint had come to police with the subject regarding cyber fraud received from Finance Secretary. “Sir I am directed to enclose a copy of note dated 31.10.2018 along with enclosures received from Finance Secretary addressed to Home Secretary relating to fraud racket operated by the culprits to dupe innocent people,” the complainant told the police. Also Read – Chinese national held with 6.4 kg sandalwoodAn email received to the ministry there was an enquiry regarding a letter in which Revenue Secretary has been shown as the signatory of this letter. “It seems that fraudulent racket run by somebody to dupe people of their hard earned money,” the complainant wrote. A case under sections 420 (Cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property), 468 (Forgery for purpose of cheating),471 (Using as genuine a forged 1[document or electronic record]), 120 B (Punishment of criminal conspiracy) of Indian Penal Code has been registered and further investigation is going on to get clues in the case. In another case, the EOW has booked three-person including director of a company for cheating. The complainant in the case has also alleged that bank officials help the suspects in the case.last_img read more

read more

74M not enough to cut refugee claim backlog internal documents

first_imgOTTAWA — The arms-length agency that processes refugee claims in Canada estimated it would need twice as much money as it will ultimately receive to significantly tackle a major backlog in asylum claims, caused in part from an influx of irregular migrants.Documents obtained under access-to-information law show the Immigration and Refugee Board drafted costing estimates in November 2017 showing it would need $140 million annually plus an additional $40 million in one-time costs to finalize 36,000 extra refugee cases every year.That’s how many cases the board would need to complete to cut the backlog and also meet the current intake of new asylum claims.The government ultimately earmarked $74 million to the IRB over two years in last year’s federal budget to address Canada’s refugee backlog, which currently stands at over 64,000.The IRB says in the documents the amount will not be enough to finalize the outstanding claims within two years and that a longer-term strategy is needed to tackle the problem.The documents also reveal employees processing the claims have raised concerns about heavy workloads, problems with their pay due to the Phoenix pay system and have pressed management about when the influx of claims will be considered a crisis.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

read more

Moons travelling entourage includes CEOs Korean Beyonce

first_imgSEOUL, South Korea – The huge civilian entourage Seoul sent to the latest inter-Korean summit includes the third-generation heir of South Korea’s largest business group and a Colorado-born pop diva nicknamed the “Korean Beyonce.”President Moon Jae-in’s office said the 52-member “special” entourage will help promote civil exchanges and engagement with younger Koreans.Some experts believe Moon is preparing for the resumption of inter-Korean economic co-operation projects after diplomacy eventually yields results. Currently, all major joint economic projects between the Koreas remain stalled because of U.S.-led sanctions.What the civilian delegation will do in North Korea has not been formally announced.The inclusion of billionaire Samsung scion Lee Jae-yong has been controversial since Lee was convicted of crimes related to the massive corruption scandal involving former South Korean President Park Geun-hye.Lee initially received a five-year prison term but it was reduced to two and a half years and suspended. Lee awaits a final ruling at Seoul’s Supreme Court. Park was removed from office last year and is serving a lengthy prison term for accepting bribes from Lee and other crimes.The liberal Moon won a special byelection last year to replace Park, under whose conservative government tensions with North Korea had been extremely high.When asked about Lee’s inclusion in Moon’s trip to North Korea, presidential chief of staff Im Jong-seok said: “Trials are trials; work is work.”Other business leaders accompanying Moon include Hyundai Group chairwoman Hyun Jeong-eun, whose company had operated now-suspended joint tours to North Korea, Hyundai Motor Group Vice Chairman Kim Yong-hwan, SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won and LG Group CEO Koo Kwang-mo.K-pop starlet Ailee and rapper Zico, who were described by Moon as pioneering “new culture,” were also part of the entourage. Born in Denver as Lee Ye Jin and raised in New Jersey, Ailee moved to South Korea in 2010 where she began her career. She quickly became one of the country’s biggest popstars after displaying her powerhouse vocals on television shows, where she performed her own songs and also renditions of Beyonce’s “One Night Only” and Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You.”The South Korean delegation also includes athletes Park Jong-ah, an ice hockey player who was on the joint Korean Olympic team earlier this year, and Hyun Jung-hwa, a retired table tennis player from the combined inter-Korean team in the 1991 World Championships.last_img read more

read more

Sleep Country buys Endy for 887 million but the two will operate

first_imgCompanies in this story: (TSX:ZZZ)Tara Deschamps, The Canadian Press TORONTO — Sleep Country Canada Holdings Inc.’s $88.7 million purchase of Canadian mattress start-up Endy won’t mean the two will be amalgamated or that the legacy brand will cease selling products from Endy’s bed-in-a-box competitors.Toronto-based Sleep Country said Friday that the two will operate separately and that Sleep Country won’t abandon selling the Bloom mattress-in-a-box that it launched in May 2017.“Bloom is not going anywhere. We sell it out of our stores and we sell it online and we plan to keep doing that,” said David Friesema, Sleep Country’s chief executive officer, on a call with analysts. “It is one of our fastest growing product launches we ever had in our history.”Friesema said Sleep Country was interested in buying Endy — built by two friends that met as high school students in Calgary and disrupted the mattress industry when they launched their company in 2015 — because of the synergies between the two brands.Despite Endy and its U.S. rival Casper increasing competition in the sleep products industry, he said the Endy purchase wasn’t meant to be a “defensive move.”“We have been watching carefully and we have been talking for awhile,” Friesema said. “This is the right time to make the purchase.”Executives said both companies were keen on the acquisition because they will each benefit from it. Endy will be able to leverage Sleep Country’s logistics, warehouse and shipping expertise, while Sleep Country will be able to tap into Endy’s e-commerce technology and digital marketing prowess.They said it is unlikely that Endy products will land in Sleep Country stores, though they admitted executives had discussed the possibility but decided to leave the decision up to Endy to make in the future.Their partnership comes at a key time for both brands. Sleep Country has long been grappling with bed-in-a-box competitors and the growth of e-commerce. It only launched an online sales offering about a year ago and has been keeping an eye on how it can reinvigorate its brick-and-mortar spaces and boost its sleep accessory sales.Meanwhile, Endy’s last year has put it on track to post $50 million in revenues this year, though it has also been challenged by competitors. Casper has aggressively expanded in Canada and is slowly opening retail stores — a feature Endy has yet to delve into.Friesema said Endy will continue to evaluate whether it should jump into brick-and-mortar.“We do test things,” he pointed out. “That will probably be more likely than ever being in a Sleep Country store, but there is no decision that has been made 100 per cent on that yet.”Rajen Ruparell, Endy’s co-founder and chairman, added that for now the company has been focused on growing its traffic online because 100 per cent of its sales are done through e-commerce.He also said the 38-employee company was committed to remaining as “lean and efficient as possible,” even as it grows.For now, the companies are waiting for the deal — $63.7 million in cash paid at closing and up to an additional $25 million in 2021 based on the achievement of growth and profitability in targets in 2020 —  to close and regulatory approvals to be received by Thursday.“It’s early days. We just got married last night and we are encouraging the entrepreneurial spirit between the organizations,” Stewart Schaefer, Sleep Country’s chief business development officer, said. “The team will come together and look under the covers and see where there are synergies.” last_img read more

read more

Cambodian Prime Minister cancels visit to Sri Lanka

Hun Sen has told Rabbani that he had some important work to complete in the country, explaining why he decided to cancel official visits overseas. “Samdech [Hun Sen] apologized because this year Samdech has a lot of work in the country so he canceled official visits to many countries including Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Australia and New Zealand,” Thamrong said.“Next year, we will be busy organizing commune elections and the national election in 2018.” (Colombo Gazette) Sry Thamrong, a minister attached to the Prime Minister’s office, told reporters of the change of plans after talks between Hun Sen and Mian Raza Rabbani, chairman of Pakistan’s Senate, yesterday in Siem Reap City. Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen has canceled a visit to Sri Lanka scheduled for this year, the Cambodian media reported.According to khmertimeskh.com, Hun Sen canceled tentative plans to visit Pakistan and three other countries – Sri Lanka, Australia and New Zealand – and instructed the Pakistani embassy to work with the Foreign Ministry to mark next year’s 65th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries. read more

read more

Malaysia Airlines and officials say search area has widened for missing passenger

Malaysia Airlines and officials say search area has widened for missing passenger jet Malaysia’s Department of Civil Aviation’s Director General Azharuddin Abdul Rahman briefs reporters on search and recovery efforts within existing and new areas for missing Malaysia Airlines plane during a press conference, Monday, March 10, 2014 in Sepang, Malaysia. The search operation for the missing Malaysia Airlines MH370 which has involved 34 aircraft and 40 ships from several countries covering a 50-nautical mile radius from the point the plane vanished from radar screens between Malaysia and Vietnam continues after its disappearance since Saturday. Experts say possible causes of the apparent crash include an explosion, catastrophic engine failure, terrorist attack, extreme turbulence, or pilot error or even suicide. (AP Photo/Daniel Chan) KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – Authorities hunting for the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner expanded their search on land and sea Tuesday, reflecting the difficulties in locating traces of the plane more than three days after it vanished.Malaysia Airlines said in a statement the western coast of the country, near the Straits of Malacca, was “now the focus” of the hunt. That is on the other side of peninsular Malaysia from where flight 370 was reported missing, meaning if the plane went down there it would have had to fly over the country, presumably undetected.Civil aviation chief Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said the statement didn’t imply authorities believed the plane was off the western coast. “The search is on both sides,” he said.The Boeing 777 had 239 people on board when it vanished off radar screens early Saturday morning en route to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur, triggering a massive international search effort.Authorities began their hunt at the point the plane was last known to be, a spot in the seas between Malaysia and Vietnam. With no debris found, they have systematically expanded their search to include areas where the plane could have in theory ended up given the amount of fuel it had on board.They have also said that the plane might have tried to turn back to Kuala Lumpur. On Sunday, Malaysia’s air force chief said there were indications on military radar that the jet may have done a U-turn.Vietnamese planes and ships are a major component of the international search and rescue effort.Lt. Gen. Vo Van Tuan, deputy chief of staff of Vietnamese People’s Army, said authorities on land had also been ordered to search for the plane, which could have crashed into mountains or uninhabited jungle. He said that military units near the border with Laos and Cambodia had been instructed to search their regions also.“So far we have found no signs (of the plane) … so we must widen our search on land,” he said.Experts say possible causes of the apparent crash include an explosion, catastrophic engine failure, extreme turbulence, pilot error or even suicide. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by The Associated Press Posted Mar 9, 2014 8:43 am MDT read more

read more

Oxfam sex scandal Now Haiti suspends the charity from working in the

first_imgThe parliamentary hearing and suspension comes in the wake of the news of resignations and dismissals of Oxfam staff in Haiti following allegations of “sex parties” involving prostitutes.On Thursday, Oxfam GB said: “The government of Haiti announced today that it will suspend Oxfam Great Britain’s operation in the country for two months, while it investigates how Oxfam GB handled the case of former staff having paid for sex during the agency’s humanitarian response in 2011. Oxfam GB has been temporarily suspended from operating in Haiti pending an investigation into how the charity handled the case of former staff paying for sex.The aid group said senior members of staff met officials from the Haiti government on Thursday and pledged their commitment to cooperating with the probe.The two-month suspension comes after charity chiefs revealed Oxfam has received 26 allegations of misconduct since the Haiti sex scandal erupted two weeks ago.Mark Goldring, Oxfam GB’s chief executive, said 16 of the claims stemmed from abroad, while 10 came from the UK.Giving evidence to the Commons International Development Committee earlier this week, Mr Goldring said around 7,000 people have cancelled regular donations to Oxfam over the past 10 days, adding that corporate sponsors appeared to be “reserving judgment”.Mr Goldring publicly apologised for the actions of charity staff who sexually exploited female victims of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. “Oxfam International Regional Director Simon Ticehurst and Oxfam Intermon Executive Affiliate Unit head Margalida Massot met government officials today and committed to cooperate with their investigation.”Oxfam has apologised to the Haitian government and people for abuses by former staff that occurred in 2011.”Oxfam is committed to putting in place a number of wide-sweeping initiatives to improve its global safeguarding policies and practices, including the establishment of an independent Commission and putting more staff and resources into its safeguarding teams.”Oxfam will continue working on construction and development projects in Haiti, helping people through other affiliate members, but anticipates that Oxfam GB’s temporary suspension will have a significant impact on its work.The charity helps 750,000 people in Haiti. Oxfam’s annual programme budget is 13 million euros, of which Oxfam GB contributes 3.2 million euros.last_img read more

read more

First footage from inside Grenfell Tower fire shown to inquiry

The Grenfell Tower public inquiry has been played footage of the moment firefighters entered the flat where the deadly inferno began.Crew manager Batterbee and his colleague firefighter Brown, both from the North Kensington station, entered flat 16 on the fourth floor of the west London block by breaking down the door at about 1.07am on June 14 last year. The crew could be seen entering a smoke-clogged corridor and rooting through the flat, before a bright yellow glow can be seen in the kitchen.”The yellow glow that you can see is the fire,” the expert said.Firefighters can be seen spraying liquid at the fire, which was put out in the flat itself at 1.20am. A firefighter opens the door to flat 16 Thermal imaging camera footage was played to the inquiry on Tuesday during a presentation by Professor Niamh Nic Daeid, the director of the Leverhulme Research Centre for Forensic Science at the University of Dundee, who was explaining the origins of the fire and its spread. Bodycam footage shows the burning cladding Bodycam footage shows the burning cladding 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. A firefighter opens the door to flat 16 A split-screen was used to show mobile phone footage of the flame beginning to spread up the outside of the building at the same time. read more

read more

Postconcert Dart chaos as commuters pried open doors and got down onto

first_img By Hayley Halpin Post-concert Dart chaos as commuters ‘pried open doors’ and ‘got down onto the tracks’ Delays were experienced as commuters travelled back from a Liam Gallagher concert at Malahide Castle. Short URL Share173 Tweet Email3 Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article 43 Comments Image: Sam Boal via RollingNews.ie DART SERVICES EXPERIENCED major delays last night after a concert at Malahide Castle as a result of anti-social behaviour, according to Irish Rail.Many commuters vented their frustrations of the delays on social media last night as they tried to get home from the Liam Gallagher concert.One train came to a stop at Portmarnock at around 11.30pm after some people onboard began “interfering” with the doors.“Obviously, if the doors aren’t securely closed the train does come to a halt,” Irish Rail spokesperson Barry Kenny told TheJournal.ie. “It was very busy after the concert and this was recurring so it was proving very difficult to rectify [the situation] as a result,” he said.Due to the halted train at Portmarnock, a second train travelling behind it between Malahide and Portmarnock was forced to stop.“We had two really busy trains that were delayed post-concert as a result,” Kenny said.Kenny said that the majority of commuters on the second train, while “understandably frustrated”, didn’t cause any issues, but that there was some “anti-social behaviour” onboard.“We had people on the second train basically prying doors open and getting down onto the track and that, of course, exacerbated the situation,” Kenny said.Because there were commuters on the tracks, he added that a train outbound from the city, which was carrying many people who had attended the Taylor Swift concert in Croke Park, was also delayed as a result.Addressing the first train, Kenny said: “Ultimately, we took the original train out of service at Portmarnock, got everybody off that train and it moved on empty.“We moved the train between Malahide and Portmarnock onwards.”An empty train from Malahide proceeded to pick up the passengers from the first train who were left at Portmarnock at around 1am.“Obviously, between the length of time, the issues and anti-social behaviour, and how busy it was, it caused a lot of people to be both delayed and upset and we apologise for that.” http://jrnl.ie/4074696 Image: Sam Boal via RollingNews.ie Jun 16th 2018, 3:12 PM 49,969 Views Saturday 16 Jun 2018, 3:12 PMlast_img read more

read more

La baleine une véritable attraction touristique en Islande

first_imgLa baleine, une véritable attraction touristique en IslandeEn Islande, la chasse à la baleine est toujours autorisée, mais est de moins en moins populaire. Les cétacés deviennent plutôt des attractions touristiques, grâce à des excursions qui permettent à des dizaines de milliers de visiteurs d’observer les baleines en mer.Si la chasse à la baleine est sujet de houleux débats en Islande, où elle de moins en moins populaire, en plus de ne plus être lucrative, l’attraction touristique que sont devenus les cétacés, elle, ne fait aucun doute. Comme le rapporte l’AFP, des dizaines de milliers de touristes sont chaque été attirés par les excursions en mer lors desquelles ils observent les baleines. Cette activité est proposée depuis les années 1990 en Islande, mais a mis des années à devenir une véritable attraction pour les touristes. À lire aussiMigaloo la baleine blanche extrêmement rare a de nouveau été filméeDepuis 2006, après une brève interdiction, l’exploitation de la viande de baleine est à nouveau autorisée. Or “la chasse à la baleine est mauvaise pour le tourisme”, déplore Hoerdur Sigurbjarnarson, qui organise des excursions dans le village de pêcheurs d’Husavik, dans le Nord du pays. “De plus, cette chasse ne sert à rien. Il n’y a pas de marché pour la viande de baleine !” souligne-t-il, appuyé par Arni Gunnarsson, le président de l’Association des entreprises de tourisme islandaises. “C’est simple : vous gagnez plus d’argent avec l’observation des baleines qu’avec la chasse à la baleine”, assure celui-ci.Excursion puis dégustation La demande en viande de baleine s’est presque effondrée dans le pays, dont les habitants son de moins en moins nombreux à soutenir ce marché. Les chasseurs ont alors dû retarder au mois d’août leur capture annuelle. “La demande s’est vraiment réduite (mais) elle reprendra”, assure toutefois Kristjan Loftsson, de l’entreprise baleinière Hvalur, la plus importante d’Islande.Reste qu’aujourd’hui, il est possible en Islande d’aller observer les baleines, puis de goûter leur chair. “Vous allez au zoo, vous observez des moutons, du bétail puis vous rentrez chez vous et vous en mangez : ce n’est pas différent” estime Kristjan Loftsson.Le 22 juillet 2011 à 14:46 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

read more

Lévolution du cerveau des dinosaures herbivores expliquée

first_imgL’évolution du cerveau des dinosaures herbivores expliquée Des chercheurs allemands et britanniques ont pu reconstituer la structure cérébrale d’un dinosaure herbivore de Tanzanie à deux stades de sa croissance, grâce à des technologies pointues. Les travaux ont été publiés dans le Journal of Evolutionary Biology.Stephan Lautenschlager, de l’École des sciences de la Terre de Bristol, et Tom Hübner, du Niedersächsische Landesmuseum de Hanovre, se sont penchés sur le cerveau de Dysalotosaurus lettowvorbecki. Ce petit dinosaure herbivore vivait en Tanzanie il y a 150 millions d’années, au Jurassique. Pourquoi cette espèce ? Parce que les paléontologues disposaient des fossiles de deux spécimens, un jeune et un adulte, dont l’âge a été estimé à plus de 12 ans. “Les deux différents stades de la croissance nous ont fourni une occasion unique d’étudier le cerveau et la façon dont celui-ci s’est développé au cours de l’évolution de l’animal”, explique Stephan Lautenschlager. “Le matériel fossile bien préservé. Nous avons ainsi pu l’utiliser pour reconstruire l’anatomie du cerveau des dinosaures. Ce qui est généralement assez rare. De plus, nous avons eu de la chance d’avoir différents stades de croissance disponibles pour notre étude”, confirme Tom Hübner. Comment reconstituer le cerveau d’un dinosaure ?   C’est en utilisant la tomodensitométrie à haute résolution et l’imagerie 3D que les chercheurs ont pu reconstituer, par ordinateur, le cerveau et l’oreille interne de Dysalotosaurus et d’en étudier l’anatomie. Celle-ci, déjà très opérationnelle dès le stade juvénile, a toutefois considérablement changé. Cela s’explique probablement par les exigences environnementales et métaboliques au cours de la croissance de l’animal, ont constaté les paléontologues. “Notre étude montre que le cerveau était déjà bien développé chez les jeunes dinosaures et parfaitement adapté à interagir avec leur environnement et avec d’autres individus”, conclut Stephan Lautenschlager. D’autres recherches dans ce domaine seront toutefois nécessaires pour pouvoir extrapoler ce modèle à l’ensemble du vaste groupe des dinosaures, soulignent les auteurs. Le 26 mai 2013 à 12:00 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

read more

Bits n Pieces Scary good program set at Magenta

first_imgWhen he was young, Jay Fredericks used to love watching his dad do a trick with a stick lined with red gemstones.His dad, who was a master hypnotist, would wave his hand over the stones, and all of a sudden, they’d change colors.Fredericks, who lives in Vancouver, would examine the stick for hours, and never found batteries or secret switches that would make the stones change. But it didn’t frustrate him, rather it gave him a lifelong love of magic and visual trickery.“My dad, he could hypnotize an entire party,” Fredericks said. “It was amazing. It instilled in me a love of all those kinds of things — magic and mind control.”But it wasn’t until Fredericks, 50, was in his 30s that he started to try his own hand at it — after watching Israeli illusionist Uri Geller on TV.“It reminded me of all that stuff my dad used to do when I was a boy,” Fredericks said. “So I trained myself.”Usually magicians learn from a mentor, but Fredericks started out by simply reading as much about it as he could, he said. He began with performing tricks for his family, but it wasn’t long before he got picked up for his first professional gigs, and from there his act just grew.“I would perform for businesses, parties, but I also did a lot of free shows for adult foster care groups and places like that,” Fredericks said. “And after a while, I found the local magic clubs, which I was surprised to find in this area.”last_img read more

read more

What a change in city code could mean for Sitkas LGBTQ community

first_imgNearly 100 Sitkans held hands in Totem Square last year in memory of the Orlando shooting victims. (Katherine Rose/KCAW photo)Earlier this fall the Human Rights Campaign gave Sitka and ten other American cities a score of zero on its municipal equality index, because these communities had no legal protection for residents based on sexual orientation or gender identity. In Sitka, that is about to change. The Sitka assembly on Tuesday passed a sweeping anti-discrimination ordinance. But will it really change anything in Sitka?Listen nowCheryl Barnes and Madison Kosma are a couple with a pretty classic “how we met” story. Both researchers working on advanced degrees, they crossed paths at school in Fairbanks last year.“I kept having feelings for her, staying at the lab later because I knew her car was in the parking lot, leaving my office door open in the hopes she would come to talk to me,” Kosma said.“Which I never did!” Barnes laughed.Long before she met Barnes, Kosma first moved to Sitka from Hawaii in 2012. There, she felt comfortable being open about her sexual orientation. But a move to a new state caused some trepidation.“When I was planning on moving to Alaska, not knowing much about Alaska, I did have some moments of wondering how I should approach the topic. It’s a red state,” Kosma says. “But then when I first landed in Sitka, I didn’t have any fear that anything was going to happen or safety reasons for not being open about who I am, who I love, and how I identify.”Barnes moved here this year. She’s on the board for Southeast Alaska LGBTQ Alliance- or SEAGLA- and to get to know the community, she threw an event at a local business for National Coming Out Day.“A month or so ago, and tried to get people to come out, ” Barnes said.“Come out to celebrate,” Kosma clarified.Sitka felt welcoming to both Kosma and Barnes when they arrived. But the city code didn’t fall in line with the values of Sitkans they knew. With nothing on the books that offered hiring or housing protections based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Barnes said that was a problem.“It does come into play when you’re discriminated against. You need to have some sort of legal leg to stand on so you can fight not being hired for a job or being rented a house because of your sexual orientation or gender expression or gender identity,” Barnes said.Earlier this fall, Sitka fell into the national spotlight, when the Human Rights Campaign issued their annual report that scores cities based on LGBTQ protections in city codes. Sitka received a score of zero. Barnes says the absence of these protections could discourage people from moving to, or even visiting, Sitka.“That is the sort of thing that LGBTQ folks look into before they go somewhere to live or even on vacation,” Barnes said. “They want to go to a place that feels supportive or at the very least non-discriminatory.”In fact, the Alaska State Commission of Human Rights received 58 inquiries about discrimination in Sitka in the last five years, though not all were LGBTQ related. Director Marti Buscaglia said that number is pretty typical when compared to other small cities in Alaska.“Several physical and mental disability cases from Sitka. Several age cases. A few religion cases and from what I can see, one national origin.”Twenty of those inquiries became formal complaints. To protect privacy, Buscaglia can’t share any specific details about the Human Rights complaints in Sitka. And she can’t say how many of those complaints were from members of the LGBTQ community because, as of now, they can’t pursue complaints based on sexual orientation or gender identity.“We did attempt to pass a resolution this year and it unfortunately did not go through. We do have a resolution in front of the legislature right now urging them to pass a law that protects the LGBTQ community in Alaska, but they’re pretty busy and it just hasn’t been prioritized,” Buscaglia said.Kosma says it’s easy to forget that Sitka is not monolithic and that discrimination happens here.“You can get into your groups and your bubbles,” Kosma said. “Maybe the voice for equality is really loud in your group, but that doesn’t mean it’s everywhere, and you’ve gotta figure out where those voices are.”And Barnes says, in the end, everyone will end up ahead if the ordinance passes.“It puts the values that people in Sitka already have on the books and protects people,” Barnes said. “That actually makes a better situation for all of us even those of us who aren’t directly impacted. How can we all feel properly protected and free in our society when others aren’t.”The ordinance also protects for discrimination based on age and disability, race and class and religion and nationality.last_img read more

read more

At least 360000 killed in Syria war Monitor

first_imgMembers of a Syrian family sit together in a cave seeking shelter from government forces` bombardment, in the village of al-Habit in the south of the province on 12 September 2018. Photo: AFPMore than 360,000 people have been killed across war-ravaged Syria in seven years, a monitoring group said Thursday, in a new toll for the brutal conflict.It came amid rising international concern that a looming Syrian government assault against rebels in the northwest province of Idlib would be a “bloodbath.”The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said it had recorded the deaths of 364,792 people, nearly a third of them civilians, since protests erupted in March 2011 against president Bashar al-Assad.The toll represents an increase of about 13,000 people in the past six months, according to the Britain-based Monitor, which uses a vast network of sources including fighters, officials and medical staff.The war has killed 110,687 civilians, including more than 20,000 children and nearly 13,000 women.More than 124,000 pro-government fighters have died, around half of them regime troops and the rest an assortment of Syrian and foreign militiamen loyal to Assad.Among them are 1,665 from Lebanon’s Hezbollah movement.The Observatory recorded the deaths of 64,000 hardline Islamists and jihadists, including from the Islamic State group and former Al-Qaeda affiliate factions.Another 64,800 fighters from other forces, including non-jihadist rebels, soldiers who defected and Kurdish factions, were also killed since 2011.The Observatory said it had confirmed the deaths of another 250 people but could not specify their identities.With help from his Russian and Iranian allies, Assad has recaptured nearly two-thirds of Syrian territory.The lion’s share of the rest is the Kurdish-controlled northeast.The largest chunk of rebel-held territory left comprises the province of Idlib and surrounding areas, where an estimated three million people live.Assad’s troops have been amassing around the area for weeks ahead of a threatened assault.The United Nations, world powers, and aid groups alike have warned a full-fledged offensive on Idlib could create a humanitarian calamity.UN secretary general Antonio Guterres this week urged the regime to pull back and for all sides to find a peaceful solution, saying Idlib “must not be transformed into a bloodbath.”last_img
read more

Local businesses swat at new regulations fees for drones

“I don’t know if they think this is a multi-million dollar business, but these regulations are driving up our costs and they’re not viable for us or our clients,” Echeverría said. “We’ll have to raise our prices ridiculously high and unnecessarily.”Echeverría’s company focuses on aerial photography and video for architectural clients and entertainment events, but he said that many companies use drones to supplement their core business. He said that he is consulting lawyers to challenge the regulations. Echeverría said he agreed that UAVs should be regulated, but he opposes the directive. “This is going to kill the market,” he said.Firefighters, police, and scientific research are among the categories exempt from the certification fee.Even if the rules as they are written go into effect, enforcement will be a challenge for the government. Federico Chavarría of the Civil Aviation Technical Commission said that the Civil Aviation Authority does not have the resources to actively police drone use in Costa Rica. He mentioned the possibility of a radar system that could track drones but authorities would depend on the public to report unauthorized UAVs.Chavarría said the rules could be changed going forward.“This is a totally new area for us,” he told reporters during a news conference on Thursday.Costa Rica’s rules follow other regulations in Guatemala, Chile and Argentina, among other Latin American countries. The Federal Aviation Administration is mulling over UAV regulations for the United States. Facebook Comments The rules extended to drones are based on those for model airplanes that were released on May 8. The directive bans flying:Within 8 kilometers of an airportHigher than 400 feetAny UAV that weighs more than 25 kgOut of eyesight of the operatorIn restricted airspace, including protected land, Casa Presidencial, penitentiariesIn a way that violates someone’s privacyDrawing a parallel with legal requirements for driving a car, the Civil Aviation Authority said that both private citizens and business would need:A $94 UAV license obtained after completing 40 hours of training, including 10 hours of flight time, at a flight school, UAV vendor or fabricator accredited by the Civil Aviation Authority.To request permission to fly via the Civil Aviation Authority website (www.dgac.go.cr, in Spanish). Permission would be granted based on a risk assessment of the area and the number of people present.A plate identifying the aircraft.Insurance.Any business that uses a drone for commercial purposes would need to pay an additional $1,874.02 certification fee. The fee would have to be paid once per individual or business. There is no limit for the number of drones that can be operated under the certification. The certification fee is hefty considering that drones can be bought for less than $100.That nearly $2,000 fee has some businesses that use drones concerned that these regulations will drive up their costs. Andres Echeverría, one of the founders of The Drone Xperience — the Costa Rican-Mexican company that accompanied Matt Damon at the beach last July — said the fees are exorbitant. When Matt Damon vacationed in Costa Rica last July, aselfie from a drone-mounted camera appeared on the Facebook page of “The Martian” on the beach in Santa Teresa. But after the Civil Aviation Authority announced its new regulations for unmanned aerial vehicles in Costa Rica, some businesses that use drones here are worried that only a visiting Hollywood star will have the money for their services.The Civil Aviation Authority announced that it would start regulating unmanned aerial vehicles here by the end of the year. The new rules might have trouble getting off the ground though, including one provision that would require businesses to pay more than $1,800 to use them here. Related posts:Drone hits small plane over Costa Rica park Costa Rica unveils $35 million program to improve small business competitiveness US businesses love Costa Rican workers, there’s just not enough of them Uber says it will support drivers fined by police in Costa Rica read more

read more

Greek prime minister puts bailout deal to referendum July 5

first_imgThe move radically raises the stakes in Greece’s confrontation with its increasingly irate creditors, whom Tsipras accused of seeking to “humiliate the country,” demanding new pension cuts, sales tax hikes and labor market reforms.Worried Greeks have been pulling their money out of banks for months, and an estimated 4 billion euro left Greek banks last week. Queues were seen forming outside several Athens cash machines and fuel stations late Friday and early Saturday.Giorgos Pistevos, a retired bank employee, was in a queue withdrawing money at 3 am in the northern suburb Vrilissia, where many cash machines had 5 to 25 people waiting.“I withdrew the (daily) limit, 700 euros, and then I went for a second try, but it won’t give me any more,” he told The Associated Press. “I’ll try again tomorrow.”Pistevos said he went home after midnight and switched on the TV. “As soon as I saw (the news), I went straight to the bank because we don’t know what will happen,” he said.Tsipras said he would ask creditors Saturday for an extension “of a few days” to Greece’s bailout program, which expires on Tuesday. In theory, without an extension, the country will lose access to any remaining bailout funds. Mesa family survives lightning strike to home The referendum announcement also raises severe questions over whether the debt-crippled country will be able to remain solvent and in the 19-state eurozone. Greece desperately needs a deal with its creditors. Without a 7.2 billion euro ($8.07 billion) bailout loan installment — which would only be available if there is a deal — the country will be unable to make a 1.55 billion euro payment to the International Monetary Fund on Tuesday, and even bigger payments later July.A Greek official close to the bailout negotiations said the country was unlikely to pay the IMF on Tuesday, adding that IMF rules allow a certain period during which a country is considered to be in arrears.By essentially defaulting on its debt mountain, Greece would likely see its banks collapse, as they depend on emergency European Central Bank funding. The government could soon run out of cash, face huge difficulties in paying pensions and civil servant salaries — and that could force it to leave the eurozone and adopt a weak national currency. But the country imports most key consumer goods, whose cost would rocket beyond most Greeks’ reach under a new currency.Teneo Intelligence analyst Wolfgango Piccoli said Tsipras’ move places Greece in “entirely uncharted waters.” In a note, he said it also raises the risk of the country leaving the euro to “at least 50 percent,” more than double the previous level. How do cataracts affect your vision? Top Stories Comments   Share   New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, center, leaves after an EU summit in Brussels on Friday, June 26, 2015. European leaders have tasked finance ministers from the euro countries with concluding a debt financing agreement with Greece over the weekend, just days before Athens has to meet a crucial debt deadline. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo) The European Central Bank has been supporting the Greek banks — and frequently increased that aid this week as they struggled to cope with the drain of deposits. But it would be under pressure to pull the plug on the banks if Greece’s bailout program expired and there was no prospect of a financial rescue for the country.Government officials early Saturday dismissed fears of a bank meltdown or imposition of capital controls.It remains unclear whether the referendum would be legitimate, as Greece’s constitution bans such votes on fiscal matters, and how the government would handle the result.“It is at this point difficult to see how this situation could end well for Athens,” Piccoli said. “Even if a majority were to back the proposal, the question is whether a government now openly opposed to the agreement would be able and willing to implement the attached reform conditions. Equally, if the “No” camp wins, it is entirely unclear at this point what the government’s plan B would look like.”Greece has survived on bailouts, conditional on deep reforms and spending cuts, since it lost the confidence of money markets in 2010. But the austerity measures worsened a punishing recession, pushed unemployment well over 25 percent and cost the average Greek at least a third of their income. Men’s health affects baby’s health toocenter_img Sponsored Stories 4 must play golf courses in Arizona Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Later on Saturday, finance ministers from the 19-member eurozone were expected to meet in Brussels for what had been billed as a last attempt to reach a mutually agreed deal. Athens said its senior bailout negotiators will meet Saturday with ECB head Mario Draghi.Development Minister Panayiotis Lafazanis urged Greeks after the late-night cabinet meeting to vote against the creditors’ proposal.“The answer of the Greek people will be a resounding no,” he told reporters. “All Greeks will vote no.”State Minister Nikos Pappas echoed the sentiment. “Our people will vote no, you will see,” he said. “This is a very good night … the Greek people will soon be able to decide” for themselves.The surprise announcement follows days of frantic negotiations with the EC, ECB and IMF in Brussels. On Friday, officials in Brussels said Athens had agreed to key reforms that are close to what creditors have demanded.The creditors in return offered Greece a five-month extension to its bailout program.According to the text of the creditors’ proposals seen by The Associated Press, Athens was offered an extension to its bailout program through November, with loans worth 15.5 billion euros. That includes the 7.2 billion euros from the existing rescue program and money left over from a bank rescue fund. ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece’s fraught bailout talks with its creditors took a dramatic turn early Saturday, with the radical left government announcing a referendum in just over a week on the latest proposed deal — and urging voters to reject it.Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras announced the July 5 referendum in a televised address to the nation, following an emergency meeting of his cabinet.“The Greek government has been asked to accept a proposal that places new unbearable burdens on the Greek people,” Tsipras said. “Right now, we bear an historic responsibility concerning … the future of our country. And this responsibility obliges us to answer (the bailout creditors’) ultimatum based on the sovereign will of the Greek people.” Elected in January, Tsipras’ government has long been adamant it would not impose any new austerity measures, after cuts made in previous years put the country through years of recession and caused mass unemployment and poverty.His concessions to creditors have mainly consisted of tax increases, mainly on businesses. Creditors worried that, while such taxes might spare the poor in the short-term, it would hurt the overall economy too much.Pistevos, at the northern Athens bank queue, said he expected the referendum to be “very divisive.”“I think the results will be unpredictable and in the end, the referendum will end up being a yes or no to Europe,” he said. “The question isn’t whether we stay in the euro. We’re already out of that. We could end up out of Europe.”___Thanassis Stavrakis and Elena Becatoros in Athens contributedCopyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Greek opposition parties — except for the Nazi-inspired Golden Dawn — expressed horror at the referendum.Conservative main opposition leader Antonis Samaras accused Tsipras’ radical left government of advocating an exit from the eurozone and the European Union.“Mr Tsipras has led the country to an absolute impasse,” he said. “Between an unacceptable agreement and leaving Europe.”But government officials insisted that the referendum would not be about currency change.“It’s not a question of yes or no to the euro … euro or drachma,” Defense Minister Panos Kammenos told state ERT TV, referring to the old Greek currency. “There is no process for Greece to leave the euro,” he added, referring to eurozone rules which contain no provision on a country being forced out of the currency club.An emergency session of Parliament will be called at noon Saturday to ratify the decision. The government has enough lawmakers to carry the vote.“The question will be acceptance or rejection of (the bailout creditors’) proposal” for a new deal, Tsipras said. His government had already said it rejected the latest proposals from representatives of the European Commission, ECB and IMF.last_img read more

read more

NewHome Sales Hit AllTime Lows in 2011

first_img New-home sales crawled to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 307,000 in December despite modest signs of recovery.[IMAGE]The “”Commerce Department””:http://www.commerce.gov/ said Thursday that new-home sales fell 2.2 percent below expectations from November, which held that homebuyers would pick up a seasonally adjusted 314,000 homes annually.New homes from last month carried a median sales price around $210,300, with the average sales price hovering around $266,000.Last year marked the sale of just 302,000 new homes, reflecting a 6.2-percent decline from figures seen in 2010. A story in “”_The Washington Post_””:http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/us-new-home-sales-fell-in-december-to-make-2011-worst-sales-year-in-history/2012/01/26/gIQANEUtSQ_story.html Thursday found that new-home sales plunged to their lowest in roughly half a century.Experts said in past interviews with MReport that ebbing [COLUMN_BREAK]unemployment and steady job growth ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô although helpful to the economic recovery and first-time homebuyers ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô fall flat on frequent contract failures, still-tight credit, and a slow pace for new home construction.The “”National Association of Realtors””:http://www.realtor.org/ (NAR) said Wednesday that pending-home sales also slid back, deploying a forward-looking index that found contract signings on the decline by 3.5 percent in December.””Even with a modest decline, the preceding two months of contract activity are the highest in the past four years outside of the homebuyer tax credit period,”” “”Lawrence Yun””:http://www.realtor.org/research/chief_economist_bio, chief economist with NAR, said of the figures in a statement.””Contract failures remain an issue, reported by one-third of Realtors over the past few months, but home buyers are not giving up,”” he added.””Paul Diggle””:http://www.capitaleconomics.com/staff/property-economics/paul-diggle.html, a property economist with consultancy “”Capital Economics””:http://www.capitaleconomics.com/, chalked up lower-than-expected new-home sales in December to a continuing foreclosure glut and discounts from short sales.””The bottom line is that new home sales are unlikely to rise significantly from their current ultra-low level while they are having to compete with deeply discounted foreclosures and short sales,”” he wrote in a note Thursday.He said that a possible stabilization in home prices may be near, even while the “”Federal Housing Finance Agency””:http://www.fhfa.gov/ reported Wednesday that prices declined by 1.8 percent year-over-year in November. Agents & Brokers Department of Commerce FHFA First-Time Homebuyers Home Prices Home Sales Housing Affordability Jobs Lenders & Servicers National Association of Realtors Processing Service Providers Underwriting Standards Unemployment 2012-01-26 Ryan Schuette Share January 26, 2012 383 Views center_img in Data, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing New-Home Sales Hit All-Time Lows in 2011last_img read more

read more

Carrington Names New Branch Manager for Virginia Office

first_imgNew,Carrington Names New Branch Manager for Virginia Office Share Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Carrington Investors Lenders & Servicers Movers & Shakers Processing Service Providers 2013-09-17 Tory Barringer September 17, 2013 422 Views center_img in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing “”Carrington Mortgage Services'””:http://www.carringtonhomeloans.com/ lending division announced the appointment of Kathy Keller as branch manager for its Springfield, Virginia, office.[IMAGE]Keller–a licensed mortgage loan originator in Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia–has more than a decade of experience in the mortgage [COLUMN_BREAK]lending industry. She was most recently operations manager at Dominion Residential Mortgage, where she was responsible for all lending functions, including sales, underwriting, funding, processing, closing, and post-closing activities.Under her direction, Carrington says the branch “”will focus on continued growth, providing expanded product offerings and faster turn times to effectively meet market demands.””””Throughout 2013, Carrington has been sharply focused on increasing our capacity, expanding our offerings and widening our reach into new markets–tasks that require strong leadership and commitment as the local level,”” said Ray Brousseau, EVP of Carrington’s Mortgage Lending Division. “”With Kathy Keller’s diverse industry knowledge and tenacity to meet the needs of borrowers in today’s dynamic housing market, she is well positioned to lead our Springfield, Virginia branch toward providing enhanced service to our customers in Virginia and Maryland.””last_img read more

read more

Pending Home Sales Increase Ahead of the Homebuying Season

first_img Share March 28, 2018 833 Views February saw a growth in the number of sales contracts signed for homes with the Pending Home Sales Index data released by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) rising 3.1 percent during the month after a slipping in January. The Pending Home Sales Index is a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings. According to NAR, a sale is listed as pending when the contract has been signed but the transaction has not closed.On a year-over-year basis, the index was down 4.1 percent. Regionally too, the year over year sales was down with the Midwest taking the biggest hit with a decline of 9.5 percent on the index.While these numbers are encouraging, they are still well below the contract signings recorded last year. “Contract signings rebounded in most areas in February, but the gains were not large enough to keep up with last February’s level, which was the second highest in over a decade (112.1),” said Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR. “The expanding economy and healthy job market are generating sizeable homebuyer demand, but the miniscule number of listings on the market and its adverse effect on affordability are squeezing buyers and suppressing overall activity.”As we get closer to the homebuying season, experts are keeping a close watch on the housing supply as well as the rising mortgage rates. Buyers face two headwinds in the market—rising home prices and higher mortgage rates—that make finding an affordable home a challenge. Younger buyers, who are often less-well positioned to compete with more experienced, cash-rich older buyers are the most impacted,” said Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at Realtor.com. “For this reason, in spite of the improvement from last month, signed contracts fall behind last year’s pace and suggest that home sales will struggle to finish ahead of last year’s pace unless inventory improves.”“Even if new home construction starts picking up at a faster pace this year, as expected, existing sales will fail to break out if these record low supply levels do not recover enough to meet demand,” Yun said. in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, journal, Newscenter_img Contract Signings Data Home Buyers homeowners homes HOUSING NAR Pending-Home Sales sales 2018-03-28 Radhika Ojha Pending Home Sales Increase Ahead of the Homebuying Seasonlast_img read more

read more

March 17 2010 Continuing our report on the hea

first_imgMarch 17, 2010 Continuing our report on the heat duct tunnel construction from March 10th: With the help of our newest workshop participants, the construction crew has already poured the next section of the heat duct tunnel. In this photo, the crew prepares the formwork for footings to support future wall sections. [photo: Chihiro Saito & text: Colleen Reckow] Here is a view of the preliminary work from above. By the next day, the forms were finished and the concrete poured. Not pictured is another small footing at the end of the opposite wall, which was also completed. [photo: Chihiro Saito & text: Colleen Reckow] The crew used the small mixer and transferred concrete into wheelbarrows. [photo: Chihiro Saito & text: Colleen Reckow] Then they poured the concrete from the wheelbarrow onto a chute positioned above the formwork. [photo: Chihiro Saito & text: Colleen Reckow]last_img read more

read more