A day after some Kashmiri students were thrashed in Chittorgarh, Rajasthan, hoardings appeared in different parts of the city here on Thursday, asking Kashmiris living in Uttar Pradesh to leave the State or face the consequences.“Boycott the Kashmiris who throw stones at Indian Army. Kashmiris leave Uttar Pradesh or face consequences,” said the hoardings, purportedly put up by the Uttar Pradesh Navnirman Sena, a fringe group.The hoardings came up after videos of clashes between security forces and protesters in the Kashmir Valley went viral on social media. The district administration removed the hoardings while the police said they would “file a case under relevant sections.”The head of the outfit, Amit Jani, said: “We want to boycott Kashmiris socially and financially so that they can tell their brothers in Kashmir not to trouble the Army. This is an important thing which must be done in order to ensure the safety of the Army in Kashmir.”Mr. Jani was arrested last year for threatening to kill JNU students Umar Khalid and Kanhaiya Kumar. Many students from Kashmir study in educational institutions in and around Meerut. Vice-Chancellor N.K. Ahuja said they were feeling safe.
Man Utd planning offers for Rice and Koulibalyby Paul Vegas16 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United will pursue Declan Rice and Kalidou Koulibaly this summer, regardless of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s future.The Norwegian is under to pressure to keep his job, with reports stating he could be sacked if United are pummelled by Liverpool after the international break.A poor start to the season which sees them lie in 12th has prompted the club’s board to plan transfers for January, with Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic and Tottenham midfielder Christian Eriksen considered.Goal says the transfers of West Ham youngster Rice and Napoli defender Koulibaly are being targeted for the summer.Both players could cost a combined total of over £200m. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
The MOMS Denise Albert and Melissa Musen Gerstein along with award-winning actress and singer Kristin Chenoweth hosted a MAMARAZZI event on Wednesday, September 28th, 2016.Denise Albert, Kristin Chenoweth, Melissa Musen GersteinCredit/Copyright: Fredy Mfuko/Mission 101 ProductionsThe event was sponsored by breast cancer support initiative Warriors in Pink powered by Ford, and was held at the renowned The Carlyle Hotel on New York’s Upper East Side.The event was an impactful one with several heartfelt speeches; the first one from breast cancer survivor and Warriors in Pink “Model of Courage” Lorraine Elmo. She told the attendees about not only her own struggle with cancer but also her mother’s struggle with cancer and how difficult it was to explain it to her children. She explained how important it was in the middle of her cancer battle to keep up her spirits and give her last bit of energy to her children to ease their struggle, and the big role music had in helping her heal.The MOMS extended a wholehearted thank you to guests for attending this important event and for supporting breast cancer awareness month. Denise Albert took off her wig for the first time in public as Kristin Chenoweth had expressed a wish to see her without it.Kristin Chenoweth’s speech revolved around how inspirational it is to see Denise fight her cancer so fiercely and how Melissa is there for her through thick and thin just like a sister. She also went on to explain how during lower days, music helps to inspire and lift one up and how music has helped her get through the devastation of having both a mother and two aunts battle breast cancer. Said Chenoweth, “Music is the vibration that heals the soul”.Through the Warriors in Pink program, Ford is committed to helping those touched by breast cancer and has dedicated $130M to research, education and support services. Warriors in Pink (#WarriorsInPinkMOMS) also empowers people to take real action to help those battling the disease through the More Good Days initiative (#MoreGoodDays), which launched in 2015 to help lessen the burden on those living with breast cancer and bring them what they ultimately deserve – more good days.The MAMARAZZI event is part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, with Denise Albert and Melissa Musen Gerstein helping to raise awareness about how to bring More Good Days to those living with breast cancer. Denise, currently undergoing treatment for breast cancer, alongside her friend and business partner, Melissa, can offer insights from first-hand experience into dealing with the everyday challenges of fighting breast cancer and finding the strength within to continue the fight.
Ohio State guard Carmen Grande (1) dribbles the ball up the court in the second half of the game against Indiana on Jan. 10. Ohio State won 55-50. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorThe Ohio State women’s basketball team (14-12, 10-7 Big Ten) continued its hot streak, winning 10 of its past 14 games, with a 61-50 win against Wisconsin(13-16, 4-13). Thursday’s game saw four players score 10 points or more, with redshirt senior guard Carmen Grande leading the way for Ohio State. Her 17 points along with three rebounds and five assists were key in giving the Buckeyes a substantial lead for most of the game. Also getting in on the action were freshman guard Janai Crooms, redshirt senior guard Carly Santoro and freshman forward Dorka Juhasz, who combined for 32 of the team’s 61 points. Crooms was hot early on helping the Buckeyes get off to an early lead in the first quarter. She was 4-of-8 from the field for 11 points to go with six rebounds. Moving into the second quarter, Santoro and Juhasz stepped up to take control of the game and get a 13-point lead heading into halftime. Santoro scored 11 points with two rebounds and two assists. Juhasz had a double-double with 10 points and 14 rebounds to contribute not only on the offensive side, but also being a key figure on the defensive side as well. Wisconsin could never quite get it going on the offensive side early on, but senior forward Marsha Howard kept the Badgers in the game with a 15-point performance along with seven rebounds and two assists. The second half was a bit of different story, as a 10-point Wisconsin run in the third quarter cut an 18-point Ohio State lead back down to a single-digit game. However, the Buckeyes countered with a nine-point run of their own to take a firm hold of the game again. Despite a nine-point run by Wisconsin in the fourth quarter, Ohio State burned enough clock to limit Wisconsin’s options. The Badgers were forced to foul to stay in the game, and the Buckeyes made enough free throws to get away with the win. The Buckeyes will close out the regular season with a rematch against Rutgers on Sunday at 2 p.m. at the Schottenstein Center.
Merseyside Police are currently investigating an incident involving Liverpool’s winger Mohammed Salah, according to club reportsAn online video appeared to show the player sitting in traffic as a number of people, including children, gathered near his car before he drove off.A Liverpool FC spokesman said: “The club, after discussion with the player, have made Merseyside Police aware of the footage and the circumstances surrounding its capture.“We have spoken to the player also and will deal with any follow-up internally.Virgil van Dijk praises Roberto Firmino after Liverpool’s win Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Virgil van Dijk hailed team-mate Roberto Firmino after coming off the bench to inspire Liverpool to a 3-1 comeback win against Newcastle United.“Neither the club or player will be making any further comment on this matter.”Merseyside Police said: “We have been made aware of a video believed to show a footballer using a mobile phone whilst driving.“This has been passed to the relevant department. Thanks for letting us know.”Salah was in fine form as he helped the Reds to a 4-0 victory against West-Ham at Anfield. Liverpool travel to Selhurst Park for their next game against Crystal Palace on Monday.
KUSI Newsroom, May 6, 2018 Five arrests made at Santee DUI checkpoint for Cinco De Mayo Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter Posted: May 6, 2018 SANTEE (KUSI) — An overnight driver’s license/sobriety checkpoint in Santee netted five DUI arrests, a sheriff’s sergeant said Sunday.Also, six citations were issued for motorists driving unlicensed or with a suspended or revoked license, said Sgt. Joe Passalacqua of the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department.Eight vehicles were also impounded at the checkpoint near the intersection of Mission Gorge Road and State Route 125, which began at 8:30 p.m. Saturday and ended today at 2:30 a.m., Passalacqua said. KUSI Newsroom
OCEANSIDE (KUSI) – A fight between two men at a North County convenience store escalated Friday into a stabbing that left one of them hospitalized and the other under arrest, police said.The 9:30 a.m. fracas happened at the ampm [sic] minimart in the 1500 block of Melrose Drive, Oceanside police Lt. Kedrick Sadler said.Following the stabbing, the assailant allegedly fled on foot; medics took the victim to a trauma center, where he was admitted in stable condition with wounds to his upper body, according to Sadler.Officers searched the area with help from a sheriff’s patrol helicopter, eventually finding the suspect at a business in the 700 block of North Avenue in Vista, several blocks south from the assault.The alleged assailant, whose name was not immediately available, was taken into custody without incident about 11:15 a.m., the lieutenant said.It was unclear what sparked the violence. January 4, 2019 Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter Posted: January 4, 2019 KUSI Newsroom KUSI Newsroom, Man stabbed during fight at Oceanside Convenience store
WILMINGTON, MA — Paul Oliver, of Paul Oliver Photography in Wilmington, expanded his skills by attending Imaging USA, the premier professional photography conference in the United States. He joined thousands of industry professionals attending this event January 20-22, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia at the Georgia World Congress Center.“This was my third time attending Imaging USA,” says Oliver. “It was another exceptional experience. I participated in programs covering Business Marketing, Social Media Strategies, Lighting, Drones & Mirrorless Camera Technology and Photography Techniques, volunteered at the convention, attended the trade show, photographed the Atlanta Skyline, Centennial Olympic Park, and some models in downtown Atlanta. I learned from the best of the best in the professional photography industry. This conference offers a wide range of networking opportunities.”Oliver hopes to attend next year’s Imaging USA in Nashville, Tennessee.“Over the years, we have attended many conventions, but the highlight of each year was and still is attending Imaging USA,” adds former PPA Chairman Michael Timmons, M.Photog.M.Artist.Cr., CPP, F- ASP. “The education everyone has access to here is nearly unlimited, from speaker after speaker presenting their messages, to when friends come together and share.”Imaging USA is the longest-running international photography convention, tradeshow and image exhibition in the world. The event dates back to 1869, when PPA began organizing its annual convention and tradeshow, ran by professional photographers for professional photographers.More than 10,000 photography enthusiasts descended upon Atlanta for three days of photography education and inspiration as well as some exclusive photography-related shopping.Highlights of this year’s event included the three-day Imaging Expo trade show, featuring more than 600 booths, giving photographers the opportunity to demo and purchase the latest products at deeply discounted and tradeshow-only prices. The event also hosted more than 100 speeches, presentations and hands-on demonstrations by some of the most respected names in the industry. Photographers also found mentoring opportunities, portfolio reviews and 10,000+ photographers to network with and create career-spanning relationships—a real bonus for photographers, who typically work for themselves.The photography learning and networking extravaganza helps photographers like Paul Oliver become better photographers and businesspeople, allowing them to better serve their clients in the process. For more information on Imaging USA, visit ImagingUSA.org.To learn about booking your next photography session with Paul Oliver Photography, visit http://www.pauloliverphotography.com or on Instagram @PauliverPhoto.About PPAProfessional Photographers of America (PPA) is the largest international nonprofit association created by professional photographers, for professional photographers. Almost as long-lived as photography itself, PPA’s roots date back to 1869. It assists 30,000 members through protection, education and resources for their continued success. See how PPA helps photographers be more at PPA.com.Skyline of Atlanta, Georgia (photo taken by Paul Oliver)(NOTE: The above press release is from Paul Oliver Photography. Cover photo of Oliver was taken by Seth Dixon.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWilmington Photographer Attends International Photography ConventionIn “Business”Wilmington Photographer Attends International Photographic ConventionIn “Business”Wilmington’s Paul Oliver Attends Prestigious New England Institute of Professional PhotographyIn “Business”
He may be criticised for lack of intent, he may hog headlines over his impending retirement, but there is little doubt MS Dhoni is important to this Indian team, especially at this crucial juncture in the tournament. The seasoned campaigner was hit on his thumb in the match against England and he was even seen spitting blood in the game. There are now concerns over his availability for the match against Sri Lanka.However, the team management has allayed all such fears as they believe the wicket-keeper batsman is fit to take part in the game against Sri Lanka. Although India have made it to the semi-finals, they still would want to beat Sri Lanka in this game and then hope South Africa down Australia, so that they go to the number 1 spot on the points table. As such, they will then face New Zealand in the semi-finals as opposed to England, if things stand the way they are currently.’Amazing capacity to ignore pain’ MS DhoniSurjeet Yadav/IANSA source from the team management has cleared all doubts over Dhoni’s availability for the match. Speaking to the news agency IANS, he said the stumper is fit and available to take on Sri Lanka. “Hai toh pahadi, woh yodha hai (he hails from the mountains and is a warrior). After more than 300 ODIs, do you think these little things even bother him? He has an amazing capacity to ignore pain. But more importantly, his finger is fine and there is nothing to worry about,” the source said.Earlier this week, a PTI report had said that India’s last match at the World Cup could well turn out to be MS Dhoni’s swan song in India colours. MS DhoniTwitter”You never know with MS Dhoni. But it is unlikely that he will continue to play for India after this World Cup. But since his decisions to quit captaincy from the three formats have been taken so suddenly, it is very difficult to predict at the moment,” a senior BCCI official told PTI.However, there have been no such statements made from the Indian management and as of now, these are considered to be mere speculations. The wicket-keeper batsman enjoys the support of Ravi Shastri and Virat Kohli as well as a number of players in the Indian camp.
Prothom Alo file photo The commuters of Narayanganj district are facing immense sufferings as a very few public transports were reportedly leaving the district for the capital since Sunday morning ahead of the BNP’s rally at Suhrawardy Udyan, reports UNB.Hundreds of commuters, mostly students and working people, were seen waiting for public transports at several bus stoppages to go to the capital city.Only the buses of Shital Paribahan were plying the roads while all the buses of other Dhaka-bound transport organisations, including Bandhan Paribahan and Utsab Paribahan, stayed off the streets since the morning, alleged many commuters.M Zakir Hossain Majumder, a private organisation employee, said he fortunately got into a bus of Shital Paribahan after competing with a good number of commuters.Apart from Narayanganj, few public transports left Savar for Dhaka since the morning amid the transport owners’ association’s allegation that they were asked to ‘keep all their transports’ off the streets.In Gazipur, commuters got stuck at several bus stoppages due to the scarcity of public transports.Many of the commuters were seen walking to reach their destinations, reports our Gazipur correspondent.Meanwhile, police arrested 48 leaders and activists of district and upazilas’ unit of BNP and its associate bodies, alleged the party leaders.Thousands of city dwellers are also reportedly facing sufferings as the presence of public transports on the roads has been very thin since the morning.
Mexico on Thursday extradited drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman to the United States — handing over one of the world’s most notorious criminals on the eve of US President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration.Guzman is the head of the Sinaloa cartel, which is accused of generating much of the deadly violence in Mexico’s decades-long drug war and providing tons of narcotics to the United States.He had twice escaped from prison, and had been fighting his extradition ever since his recapture almost exactly a year ago in his home state of Sinaloa following his second daring jailbreak.Guzman, 59, had been in prison in Ciudad Juarez, which borders Texas, since he was abruptly transferred there from another penitentiary near Mexico City in May.A US government official told AFP on condition of anonymity that Guzman would land later in the evening in New York, one of several US jurisdictions where he is facing charges.President Enrique Pena Nieto had previously refused to extradite Guzman, but he changed tack after the slippery drug lord’s latest escape in July 2015.The Mexican government “delivered Mr. Guzman Loera to the authorities of the United States” after the Supreme Court and a court of appeals rejected his latest bids to avoid extradition, the foreign ministry said in a statement.The appeals court ruled that the extradition conformed with a bilateral treaty and that Guzman’s rights had not been violated, the statement said.One of Guzman’s lawyers, Silvia Delgado, told Milenio television that she was surprised by the extradition, calling it “illegal” because another legal petition was pending.- Timing: Dig at Trump? -The US Department of Justice said in a brief statement that his initial court appearance would be “forthcoming,” without saying where he would be held.”The Justice Department extends its gratitude to the government of Mexico for their extensive cooperation and assistance in securing the extradition of Guzman,” it said, adding that he had been charged in six separate indictments.A spokeswoman for federal prosecutors in New York declined to comment.In May, the Mexican foreign ministry approved extradition bids from California, where he is wanted for drug distribution, and Texas, where he faces a slew of charges including murder and money laundering.Trump, who takes office on Friday, has publicly clashed with Mexico over trade and immigration issues. The Republican president-in-waiting has pledged to build a wall on the US-Mexican border.Alejandro Hope, a prominent Mexican security expert, said the decision to extradite Guzman in the last hours of Barack Obama’s presidency and before Trump takes office was “not a coincidence.””It looks like they didn’t want to give Trump an early victory,” Hope told AFP.”They didn’t want Trump to be able to brag about it, so they managed to hand him over in the final minutes” of the Obama administration, he said.But Alejandro Almazan, author of the Guzman biography “The Most Wanted,” saw the opposite, saying “Chapo is a gift to Trump” because Pena Nieto wants good relations with the new US leader.- Daring escapes -Guzman’s extradition caps a Hollywood-worthy cat-and-mouse game between Mexican authorities and the slippery drug lord, who escaped twice from prison.His feats turned him into a legend of Mexico’s underworld, with musicians singing his praises in folk ballads known as “narcocorridos” — tributes to drug capos.He was first captured in Guatemala in 1993, only to escape from a maximum-security prison in western Mexico in 2001 by hiding in a laundry cart.Marines backed by the US Drug Enforcement Administration arrested him in February 2014 in the Sinaloa resort of Mazatlan, where he was staying with his wife and twin daughters.Pena Nieto insisted at the time that Guzman would face justice at home.But Guzman escaped from prison again in spectacular fashion just 17 months later.His henchmen had dug a 1.5-kilometer (one-mile) tunnel that opened into his cell’s shower at the Altiplano prison near Mexico City, allowing him to slip out and flee on a remodeled motorbike that was fitted on tracks.Guzman was recaptured in the Sinaloa town of Los Mochis in January 2016.Authorities said they tracked him down after Guzman held a clandestine meeting with US actor Sean Penn and Mexican-American actress Kate del Castillo a few months earlier.Officials were able to intercept flirtatious text messages that Guzman sent to the actress.After he was arrested again, Pena Nieto ordered officials to speed up the process.Guzman’s arrest likely leaves his long-time associate, Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada, at the helm of the Sinaloa cartel, giving continuity to the powerful gang.But Raul Benitez Manaut, a security expert at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, said the extradition “definitely weakens the Sinaloa cartel.”Guzman’s sons, Archivaldo Ivan and Jesus Alfredo Guzman, may harbor their own ambitions.”There will be an internal fight between his sons and the sons of other of the founders,” Benitez Manaut said. “It could be violent — or maybe it could be peaceful.”
A van with a Spanish numberplate near the concert venue Maassilo is seen during police investigations after a rock concert was cancelled due to a terror threat, in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. Photo: AFPDutch police are investigating possible terror links after arresting a Spaniard driving a van containing gas canisters close to a rock concert which was abruptly cancelled over fears of an attack.The man “was arrested and taken to the police station,” Rotterdam police said in a Tweet, following a tip-off from Spanish authorities.The arrest came little under a week after twin car-bomb attacks in Spain killed 15 people, in attacks claimed by the Islamic State group.Dutch bomb squad officials “were investigating the van” which was found just two streets away from the Maassilo concert hall where an American rock band was due to play, they added.Earlier in the evening Dutch authorities decided to cancel the concert by Californian group Allah-Las in Europe’s largest port city after a tip-off from Spanish police around 5:30pm (1530 GMT) about a possible terror attack.“In the early evening I was warned by telephone that we had received a threat which had implications for an American concert at the Maassilo in Rotterdam,” the city’s mayor, Ahmed Aboutaleb, told a hastily-called press conference.“This signal came from the Spanish police to the Dutch police,” he added.But Aboutaleb, the country’s first Muslim and immigrant-born mayor who has spoken out against Islamic terror groups, added an investigation was under way and “we cannot say now if the van with the canisters was linked to the threat”.The four-piece band, from Los Angeles, had been escorted from the concert hall by police wearing bullet-proof vests.In a statement sent to AFP, they said they were “unharmed and are very grateful to the Rotterdam police and other responsible agencies for detecting the potential threat before anyone was hurt.”Rotterdam police said that afterwards an officer “stationed close to the venue decided to stop a van that he saw driving at around 21:30 hrs”.“The van had Spanish plates and was driven by a Spanish national. Inside the van were a couple of gas bottles. Whether there is a link with the terror threat is being looked into,” the statement in English said, adding “the driver was taken into custody”.Concert hall evacuatedThe international connections of the cell of mostly Moroccan nationals behind the Spanish attacks are being probed as investigators retrace their movements to France and Belgium.Spanish police carried out new raids overnight Tuesday to Wednesday after vehicles ploughed into pedestrians on Barcelona’s busy Las Ramblas boulevard and a seaside promenade in the resort town of Cambrils.Fifteen people were killed and more than 120 others were wounded.Spanish court documents have shown that at least 500 litres of acetone, large quantities of nails and detonators as well as gas canisters were found in raids on a house in the town of Alcanar, south of Barcelona.The Rotterdam building where Wednesday’s concert was to be held, which can hold about 1,000 people, was searched by the Dutch anti-terror squad after the crowd had been evacuated.The Netherlands has so far been spared from the slew of terror attacks which have rocked its closest European neighbours in past years.But amid a number of scares here in recent months, and reports that people linked to some of the attacks may have crossed briefly into the country, concerned top Dutch security and intelligence officials have been keeping a wary eye on events.A spokesman for the Dutch justice ministry told AFP the threat level in The Netherlands remained at “four” out of a possible five.“Nothing has changed for the moment,” Lodewijk Hekking said, meaning the threat levels remains that there is the real possibility of an attack in the Netherlands.
BNP senior leader Moudud Ahmed. Prothom Alo File PhotoAfter being attacked reportedly by the supporters of his opponents, BNP candidate for Noakhali-5 seat Moudud Ahmed on Monday decided not to carry out any electioneering until his security is ensured.”I’ve decided to withdraw myself from election campaign after being subjected to a serious attack today (Monday),” he told UNB over phone.Moudud, a BNP standing committee member, said he already informed the returning officer and army officials here about the incident. “I told them I won’t carry out electioneering until adequate security for my life is ensured.”Narrating the attack on him, the BNP leader said he was going to carry out election campaign at Natunbazar around 11am. “As my motorcade reached the bazar area, a group of ruling party activists equipped with rods and sticks attacked us and starting vandalising my car and another vehicle of my motorcade. They badly damaged the two vehicles.”He alleged that he could have died the way the ruling party men attacked his vehicle. “Allah saved me, but my five followers were injured badly. “It’s a matter of wonder they attacked a candidate like me.”Moudud said the ruling party activists also attacked his supporters at Chaprashirhat, leaving many of them injured. “After such attacks, I returned home stopping electioneering as my life is not safe.”
A Syrian government forces soldier walks over the rubble of buildings in the former rebel-held town of Zamalka in Eastern Ghouta, on the outskirts of the capital Damascus on Wednesday. Photo: AFPUS President Donald Trump warned Wednesday that “missiles will be coming” in response to an alleged chemical attack in Syria, as the UN chief urged world powers to stop a face-off with Russia from spiraling out of control.With punitive US military action seemingly imminent, Russia scrambled to deflect blame from its ally Bashar al-Assad and, according to a monitor group, Syrian forces evacuated key defense buildings in Damascus.Trump’s warlike tweets came in response to a warning from Russia’s ambassador to Beirut, who took to a television network run by the armed group Hezbollah to declare that any US missiles would be shot down “as well as the sources they were fired from.”If the US action follows the pattern of a previous punitive strike on Syria last year, it will begin with a salvo of cruise missiles fired from American warships in the Mediterranean, as Trump implied when he tweeted they would be “nice, new and ‘smart.’”Defense Secretary Jim Mattis as well as CIA director Mike Pompeo huddled at the White House on Wednesday to discuss options and game out the situation.“The president’s national security team met today. That meeting was chaired by the vice president to discuss a number of options,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said.With the UN Security Council failing thus far to find a diplomatic solution, Secretary General Antonio Guterres warned Wednesday time was running out.“Today, I called the Ambassadors of the five Permanent Members of the Security Council to reiterate my deep concern about the risks of the current impasse and stressed the need to avoid the situation spiraling out of control,” he said, referring to the United States, Russia, China, France and Britain.Moscow and Washington have so far vetoed each other’s motions to set up an international investigation into chemical weapons use.Opponents of unilateral US action called an emergency closed-door meeting of the UN Security Council for later Thursday.Meanwhile, Moscow said the formerly rebel-held district of Eastern Ghouta-including Douma, the target of Saturday’s attack-had been “totally stabilized” and would soon be patrolled by Russian military police.But the Russian army continued to deny their side’s latest victory came after Assad launched a chemical attack on the last rebel-held pocket of the enclave in the Damascus suburbs, instead accusing the White Helmets civil defense organization of staging the massacre.Trump’s spokeswoman dismissed this idea, and pointedly refused to acknowledge that concern about the risks of a direct confrontation with Russia would hold the US military back.“The intelligence provided certainly paints a different picture,” she said. “The president holds Syria and Russia responsible for this chemical weapons attack.”But while the Russian president’s lieutenants continued to up the ante with threats and allegations, Vladimir Putin himself adopted a more statesmanlike tone, in remarks to new ambassadors presenting their credentials at the Kremlin.“The situation in the world is becoming more and more chaotic but all the same we hope that common sense will finally prevail and international relations will take a constructive path,” he said.Trump’s tweets were more belligerent-he told Russia “You shouldn’t be partners with a Gas Killing Animal who kills his people and enjoys it!”-and declared that US relations with Russia have plunged to a historic low.But he notably also said there was “no reason for this,” reiterated his hope for talks with Putin to halt a new arms race, and blamed his domestic political opponents for poisoning ties.Assad’s Damascus regime, which has long accused Washington of supporting its armed opponents in the country’s bloody seven-year-old civil war, hit back at Trump’s “reckless escalation.”OPCW to deployTrump and other Western leaders have vowed a quick and forceful response to Saturday’s alleged gas attack, which rescue workers say killed more than 40 people.British Prime Minister Theresa May has called an emergency cabinet meeting for Thursday, while French President Emmanuel Macron is to decide on a response in the coming days, having insisted he does “not want an escalation” and that any response would focus on Syria’s chemical capabilities, not on allies of the regime.As it looked to head off the threat of Western strikes, Syria said it had invited the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, which has blamed the regime for previous attacks, to visit the site.The OPCW said it would “shortly” deploy a fact-finding team to Douma for an investigation, but US officials said they were working from their own information and would not necessarily hold back.Damascus agreed to hand over its chemical arsenal in 2013, narrowly avoiding American and French air strikes in retaliation for a suspected sarin attack.That incident, which killed hundreds, also took place in Eastern Ghouta.
Share Robin Jerstad for The Texas TribuneState Sen. Carlos Uresti, D-San Antonio, arrives at the federal courthouse in San Antonio on Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2017.The criminal case against Democratic state Sen. Carlos Uresti, Assistant U.S. Attorney Joe Blackwell told jurors Monday morning, was “birthed in loss” — but it ended with both “loss and profit.” The prosecutor said the losses were suffered by Denise Cantu, whose son and daughter were killed in a 2010 car wreck that would ultimately, with Uresti’s legal representation, win her a substantial wrongful death settlement. And the profit, Blackwell said, also came at her expense, when she lost the bulk of $900,000 she invested at Uresti’s recommendation with FourWinds Logistics, a now-defunct frac-sand company where Uresti worked as general counsel and owned 1 percent of shares. The largest question looming in the federal felony case against the San Antonio senator is whether he was aware of the Ponzi scheme that effectively robbed Cantu and a slate of other large-stake investors. Blackwell alleged in opening arguments that Uresti used his reputation and prominent position to lend credibility to the fraudulent scheme. Defense attorneys claim that Uresti didn’t know about FourWinds’ shady dealings.“There’s not a question of fraud in this case,” defense attorney Michael McCrum said. “Fraud did happen. People pled guilty to it. But the people on the outside didn’t know about it. That’s why we’re here.”Three FourWinds employees, including Chief Operating Officer Shannon Smith, entered into plea deals in 2016 and are expected to testify for the government starting Tuesday. And FourWinds CEO Stanley Bates, co-defendant with Uresti, unexpectedly pleaded guilty to eight felony charges earlier this month.Lawyers on both sides argued for about four hours Monday to a jury warned several times by U.S. District Judge David Ezra to disregard widespread media reports on the case. The courtroom was packed with Uresti’s family, so full in the morning that would-be spectators — including Uresti’s father – were at first turned away. Flanked by his defense attorneys, the senator listened attentively throughout, his face always directed toward the jury. Uresti’s co-defendant Bates was in dire financial straits when he launched FourWinds, which purported to sell sand to fracking companies. Prosecutors said Bates and his associates falsified bank statements, in one instance claiming there was nearly $19 million in an account of under $100,000, to assuage skeptical investors.Still, prosecutors argued, potential investors remained wary of the relatively unknown company. Enter Uresti, a veteran state legislator, a reputable local lawyer and a member of a San Antonio family so prominent that its name calls out to drivers several times on stretches of nearby highway.“Uresti had something Stan Bates didn’t — a well-known name, respected attorney, state senator,” Blackwell said. “He was someone that could bring credibility to FourWinds.”That reputation helped lock in hesitant investors, and that, along with Uresti’s personal relationship with Cantu — he denies her claim that the relationship was sexual — secured millions in investments for the fraudulent company, prosecutors alleged. Investors were told that their money was being used to purchase sand, which would be sold at a markup to oil companies, prosecutors said. In fact, according to the prosecution, FourWinds leadership used it to pay themselves and to cover extravagant personal expenses.Uresti’s lawyers did not deny on Monday that Uresti’s reputation lent credibility to a sketchy operation. But, they insisted, Uresti was never aware that the business didn’t merit that credibility.“Senator Uresti never asked to look at the books,” McCrum said. “The evidence is going to show that he had no idea what was going on with the books.”Uresti’s defense team hammered home the point that Uresti should be presumed innocent, acknowledging that jurors might carry biases against politicians. His 11 felony charges could carry decades in prison, as well as millions of dollars in fines. And if convicted, Uresti would lose his long-held seat in the Texas Legislature, though he could continue to serve during the appeals process.The trial is expected to continue for about three weeks in San Antonio.Uresti is also set for a May trial in a separate bribery case. Indictments for that case, as well as the fraud case currently being heard, were both handed down in May 2017 after a February FBI raid of Uresti’s law offices.The senator has also been accused of sexual harassment at the Texas Capitol, charges he emphatically denies. Those allegations will not be permissible evidence in court, the judge ruled last week.
Share Lauren Victoria Burke/APFormer House Speaker John Boehner voted to prohibit medical marijuana as a U.S. congressman from Ohio in 1999, but he came out in support of some uses of cannabis on Wednesday.John Boehner, former speaker of the House, became an unlikely advocate for marijuana on Wednesday.Reversing years of opposition to the drug when he served in Congress, the Republican announced that his “thinking on cannabis has evolved.”He tweeted that he was joining the Board of Advisors of Acreage Holdings, a corporation formerly known as High Street Capital Partners that operates cannabis cultivation, processing and dispensing across 11 states.Boehner said: “I’m convinced de-scheduling the drug is needed so we can do research, help our veterans, and reverse the opioid epidemic ravaging our communities.”I’m joining the board of #AcreageHoldings because my thinking on cannabis has evolved. I’m convinced de-scheduling the drug is needed so we can do research, help our veterans, and reverse the opioid epidemic ravaging our communities. @AcreageCannabis https://t.co/f5i9KcQD0W— John Boehner (@SpeakerBoehner) April 11, 2018The announcement is a departure from his stance on cannabis use while in office. He voted to prohibit medical marijuana in Washington, D.C., in 1999. Two years later, he wrote a letter to an Ohio constituent, stating, “I am unalterably opposed to the legalization of marijuana or any other FDA Schedule I drug. I remain concerned that legalization will result in increased abuse of all varieties of drugs, including alcohol,” according to NORML, a marijuana advocacy group.But times have apparently changed. In a joint statement, Boehner and former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld, another Republican joining Acreage’s board, said that “the time has come for serious consideration of a shift in federal marijuana policy.”They reinforced the importance of medical marijuana, stating:“We need to look no further than our nation’s 20 million veterans, 20 percent of whom, according to a 2017 American Legion survey, reportedly use cannabis to self-treat PTSD, chronic pain and other ailments. Yet the VA does not allow its doctors to recommend its usage. There are numerous other patient groups in America whose quality of life has been dramatically improved by the state-sanctioned use of medical cannabis.”They say that there are negative consequences to federal policy which designates marijuana as a Class 1 drug — meaning it lacks accepted medical use and has a high potential to be abused. They list consequences as impeding research and preventing the Department of Veterans Affairs from offering the drug to vets as an alternative to opioids.The Marijuana Policy Project told NPR that Boehner’s decision reflects a change in public opinion on marijuana among adults. “Politicians have traditionally lagged behind the people on this issue, so it is wonderful to see one so adamantly opposed to legalization reversing course like this,” said Morgan Fox, Director of Communications.Acreage founder and CEO Kevin Murphy said in a written statement that Boehner and Weld’s arrival onto its advisory board will bring about more access for patients in need of medical marijuana “by changing the conversation overnight. These men have shaped the political course of our country for decades and now they will help shape the course of this nascent but ascendant industry.”Boehner and Weld will join the Board of Advisors immediately, says Acreage, and they have also committed to joining the company’s board of directors once it has been established.The move comes at a time when the Trump administration has taken steps to scrap policy that enabled states to legalize marijuana.Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.
By FARAI MUTSAKA, Associated PressHARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) — Zimbabwe’s 94-year-old former president Robert Mugabe is no longer able to walk as his health declines, his successor said Saturday.President Emmerson Mnangagwa told ruling party supporters that Mugabe has been in a hospital in Singapore for the past two months.“He can no longer walk but we will continue to take care of him,” said Mnangagwa, who took over from his former mentor a year ago after Mugabe stepped down under military pressure.In this Sunday, July 29, 2018 file photo, former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe holds a press briefing at his residence in Harare. (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi, file)Mugabe was the world’s oldest head of state before his dramatic exit following 37 years in power, a period in which he led the country from independence into repression and economic collapse. For years, Zimbabweans who saw their aging leader nod off during events speculated how long he would stay in office, while his wife vowed that he could rule from the grave.In a rare public appearance in July, Mugabe slumped behind a bank of microphones during a press conference and didn’t leave his chair until reporters left.In his remarks on Saturday to supporters at a rally in Mugabe’s home district, Mnangagwa said the former leader had planned to return to Zimbabwe on Oct. 15 but was not feeling well.Mnangagwa did not give further details about Mugabe’s condition.He is now expected to return to Zimbabwe on Nov. 30.The president and Mugabe, whose firing of Mnangagwa as his deputy led to his ouster, have made recent signs of reconciliation. Mugabe supported an opposition leader in Zimbabwe’s historic election in July but in September said he accepted Mnangagwa’s win. “All of us are now duty-bound to rally behind the government,” he said.Mnangagwa in turn on Saturday heaped praise on the former president.___Follow Africa news at https://twitter.com/AP_Africa
The idea of using flash-based storage in a notebook isn’t new. Nevertheless, the high cost of flash has prevented it from replacing hard-disk drives on mainstream notebook PCs, despite some advantages in power consumption, shock resistance, and speed–until now.Photograph: Robert CardinAs prices continue to drop, flash-based solid-state drives (SSDs) have become viable options for handling your notebook’s primary storage requirements. Moreover, today’s roomiest SSDs have 32GB of memory, enough to do more than satisfy basic storage needs–making them competitive with 1.8-inch hard-disk drives, which range in capacity from 30GB to 80GB. These SSDs, available from companies like Samsung and SanDisk, are lightweight (the SanDisk UATA 5000, for example, weighs 59 grams–just over 2 ounces) and can be found in portables from Dell, Fujitsu, and Toshiba.Are they worth the extra dollars? In spite of price drops, SSDs cost $400 to $500 more than ordinary hard drives of the same capacity. To justify the price difference, SSD notebooks must demonstrate significant performance benefits over notebooks equipped with standard hard drives. To find out whether they do, we tested three pairs of ultraportable notebooks from Fujitsu and Dell.The SSD ChallengePhotograph: Rob CardinThe two test models in each pair of laptops were identically configured, except that one had an SSD, and the other a typical 1.8-inch 4200-rpm hard drive. Two of the notebooks–Dell’s 6.25-pound ATG D620 ($3015 with SSD, $2815 with a 80GB hard-disk drive) and Fujitsu’s 2.5-pound LifeBook P1610 ($2578 with SSD, $2029 with a 30GB hard-disk drive)– ran Windows XP Professional. The third notebook, another LifeBook P1610 ($2548 with SSD, $1999 with a 30GB hard-disk drive) ran Windows Vista Business.No Clear WinnerResults were mixed: In several cases, our tests bore out the advantages of SSD, in other cases, the hard-disk-based models led the way.Photograph: Rob CardinOur benchmark suite for testing system performance, WorldBench 6, Beta 2, showed no definite pattern in overall results between SSD systems and hard-disk-drive systems. For example, the two Dell ATG D620 models, packed with a 2.0-GHz Core 2 Duo T7200 CPU and 1GB of memory, each earned a mark of 76 on WorldBench 6. In contrast, the two Fujitsu LifeBook P1610 units, configured with a 1.2-GHz Core Solo U1400, 1GB of memory, and Windows XP Professional, differed in performance: The SSD version received a score of 42, while the hard-drive version received a 39.Interestingly, the performance difference was even more pronounced in the pair of Fujitsu P1610 models running Windows Vista Business. Here, the SSD version of the notebook finished with a 36 on our WorldBench 6 beta tests, while the hard-drive version posted only a 30. The Vista-based Fujitsu system with the SSD did especially well on our Adobe Photoshop CS2 image manipulation test, besting the hard-drive version by 36 percent, and on our Nero 7 Ultra Edition disk burning test, where it outperformed its counterpart by 76 percent.The SSDs achieved superior performance in all three pairings on only two types of applications: drive-intensive tests like our Nero 7 Ultra Edition disc burning, and WinZip 10.0 file compression tests. The SSD versions of the two Fujitsus also earned higher marks than their hard-disk doppelgangers on our Photoshop CS2 test, but on that test the hard-disk Dell outran the SSD Dell by 10 percent.SSDs Rock on Hard-Drive-Intensive TasksWe did see decisive performance wins by the SSD models on the file read and write tests that we use for our hard-drive testing. (The read and write tests consist of reading and writing folders of files, and searching for files on a drive.) On these tests, the SSD models bested their hard-drive counterparts in 11 out of 12 instances. Occasionally, the scores were close: On our Windows file search of 6.1GB of data, for example, the SDD Fujitsu Vista Business system notebook finished the test in 86 seconds, while its hard-drive-based twin finished the test in 100 seconds. Still, in most cases, the SSD models were dramatically faster. The most extreme example: The XP Pro Fujitsu finished our large-file reading and writing test in 199 seconds, far ahead of the hard drive-equipped model, which finished the test in 533 seconds.SSDs Deliver Only Slight Battery Life EdgeThough industry experts routinely boast that flash memory consumes less power than hard drives do, our battery tests found little real-world difference between the two drive types on this measure.The SSD version of the Dell ATG D620 lasted 5 hours, 40 minutes in our test, just 3 minutes longer than the hard-disk-equipped version lasted. The SSD Fujitsu P1610 with XP held out for 3 hours, 11 minutes–7 minutes longer than its hard-drive counterpart. And the SSD Fujitsu P1610 running Vista Business bested the hard-drive version by 9 minutes (2 hours, 26 minutes versus 2 hours, 17 minutes). The advantage in battery life boost would almost certainly increase for the SSD models if they were matched against hard-drive laptops with drives larger than the 4200-rpm components we used. The faster a disk spins, the more power is required to spin it.SSD’s Other BenefitsNumbers don’t tell the whole story about solid-state drives. SSDs also tend to be more rugged than a standard hard drive because the NAND flash memory they use lacks the moving parts found in a hard drive. Drop your notebook, and the data on your SSD will be safe–even if the notebook’s screen doesn’t survive unscathed. Also, unlike hard-disk drives, SSDs don’t generate heat and don’t produce a lot of electromagnetic interference.ConclusionsManufacturers first incorporated SSDs into ultraportable notebooks designed for people working in healthcare, insurance, and similar fields. But as prices drop and storage capacities increase, you can expect manufacturers to begin promoting SSD notebooks to a broader range of users.Indeed, the movement toward the mainstream has already begun. This summer, Dell introduced SSD into the company’s Latitude D630, D830, and D430 business notebooks, which target power business users and travelers. Choosing the SSD option to replace the standard 80GB 5400-rpm hard drive on any of these units adds $540 to its overall price. Toshiba is expected to begin introducing SSDs into select notebooks later this year, too.The Bottom LineUltimately, with an SSD in your notebook, you’ll see somewhat better system responsiveness, and a positive change in the way the system handles drive-intensive tasks such as reading data from and writing data to the drive, coming out of standby mode, and booting up from scratch. If you’re a mobile worker who tends to bump your laptop around a little and who would benefit from performance boosts in those areas, the extra cost of having “SSD inside” might just be worth it.Test Report: Solid-State Drives vs. Hard-Disk Drives–Which Are Faster?The performance boost from SSD varies from notebook to notebook, but using SSD is clearly beneficial for hard-drive-intensive tasks. Enroll Now for Free This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience. 6 min read Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now Brought to you by PCWorld July 13, 2007
05Mar Rep. Pscholka hits icy water to benefit Michigan Special Olympics Categories: News Michigan’s winter has been frigid, and it was an even colder day than usual for state Rep. Al Pscholka as he took a dive into a pool of icy water on the lawn of the state Capitol as part of the Legislative Polar Plunge to support Michigan Special Olympics.Rep. Pscholka, dressed as the Grinch, braved below-freezing temperatures for the fourth consecutive year to participate in the event. The Stevensville Republican in past years has taken the plunge dressed as a shark, a bear and a penguin. More than a dozen lawmakers this year participated in the event, with temperatures in Lansing reading just 16 degrees.“It’s been an honor to participate for the fourth year in a row and raise money for the Special Olympics and all of the athletes it supports,” said Pscholka. “With so many of my colleagues coming out to bear the cold, not only does this event raise awareness for this worthy cause, but it’s fun too.”Nearly 21,000 athletes annually participate in Special Olympics Michigan, which is a year-round program offering sports for those with intellectual disabilities. The ultimate goal of Special Olympics is to help persons with intellectual disabilities participate and receive respect as members of their communities.“Many of my constituents in the 79th District participate in the Special Olympics, and some have advanced to national competitions,” Pscholka said. “This is a small price to pay to support them.”
Jørgen Madsen Lindemann, MTG president and CEO.Modern Times Group has delivered fourth quarter profits in line with analyst forecasts after a tough year that has seen the forced sale of its stake in Russian broadcaster CTC Media and the sale of its Russian and central and eastern European pay TV businesses.MTG posted net sales of SEK4.54 billion (€487 million) for the fourth quarter, up 4% at constant exchange rates. EBIT before non-recurring items was SEK434 million, down from SEK478 million, while net income was SEK375 million, down from SEK471 million.CTC, the sale of which has still to be finalised, was classified as a discontinued operation by the group with a net income of zero for the quarter. MTG said that the ‘fair value’ of its 38% holding in the company, the sale of its stake in which was forced by Russia’s new media laws severely restricting foreign ownership, was SEK1 billion as of December 31, reflecting its completed sale of a 75% to UTV Management for US$200 million.MTG said that the sale or termination of its holding in the group would result in a non-cash charge to net income of SEK1 billion.MTG’s emerging markets pay TV business saw fourth quarter sales drop by 40% to SEK212 million following the sale and deconsolidation of the Russian and international pay TV channel business in November. MTG said it “a solution is currently being finalized” regarding the future of its troubled Ukrainian pay TV platform, while youth-oriented channel business Trace saw sales grow in the quarter.MTG’s Nordic pay TV business saw sales rise by 3% at constant exchange rates to SEK1.5 billion, while EBIT fell from SEK184 million to SEK173 million. The total premium subscriber base grew by 24,000 quarter-on-quarter excluding the Viaplay subscription video-on-demand service.Nordic free TV activities saw sales rise at constant exchange rates thanks to a strong performance in Denmark and Norway. In emerging markets, Bulgaria the Baltic states and the Czech Republic all reported higher sales, while MTG’s Hungarian operations were deconsolidated in November.The relatively strong performance enabled the group to propose an increased dividend of SEK11.50 a share.“Our aim is to accelerate our sales growth and increase our operating profits in 2016, due to the positive effects of the transformation process; the high level of operational gearing in our emerging market free-TV operations; and the positive sales impact of the content investments that we have made. These benefits will gradually compensate during the year for the anticipated SEK250m of incremental adverse FX effects, and the additional costs for the new or extended sports rights that we have acquired,” said Jørgen Madsen Lindemann, president and CEO.