InterManager Welcomes Hollywood’s Focus on Seafarers

first_imgzoom As the new Hollywood blockbuster Captain Phillips premiers around the globe, InterManager has welcomed the focus the movie brings to the role of the seafarer.Captain Phillips, which stars Tom Hanks in the title role, retells the story of the kidnapping by Somali pirates of the US-flagged containership Maersk Alabama.InterManager, the international trade association which represents the world’s ship and crew managers, says the movie’s worldwide appeal will raise the profile of seafaring and help broaden understanding of what a life at sea is like.Hanks has said in interviews that he had little understanding of what seafarers did until he took part in the filming of this movie.He told Maritime TV: “You see these ships all over the world and you don’t think much of them, you don’t realise how many people are on board or how difficult they are to run. It doesn’t look like a glamorous job and it’s not but it’s an important one and there’s stresses that you can’t even begin to believe or fathom.”Speaking of the world’s seafarers, he said: “They have a lot of pressure on them. It’s a very dangerous job as well as a very important one and you have to be accomplished in order to get it done. I was very impressed with how hard it is and how much is involved.”Secretary General Kuba Szymanski said: “Seafarers are a hard-working and brave group of people who risk their lives ensuring goods are transported around the world. I am heartened to hear high-profile people like Tom Hanks explaining how this movie has helped them to better understand the importance of shipping and seafaring.”InterManager, October 9, 2013last_img read more

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Commission Seeks Public Input on Electoral Boundaries

first_imgThe commission reviewing Nova Scotia’s electoral boundaries is holding a series of public meetings around the province. A schedule for the first round of public meetings was released today, March 1. The Electoral Boundaries Commission also launched a website where Nova Scotians can ask questions and submit comments. All submissions forwarded to the commission will be viewed as public documents and may become part of the its published reports. “We look forward to hearing from a wide cross-section of Nova Scotia voters, as public feedback on electoral boundaries is critical as we make our recommendations,” said Teresa MacNeil, chair of the commission. “We want what we hear from Nova Scotians to be reflected in our report, and to make sure our recommendations take all concerns into consideration.” Feedback from the meetings and submissions will be used to compile the commission’s interim report, due May 31. Public meetings are scheduled for: — Lower Sackville: Thursday, March 15, 7–9 p.m., Sackville Fire Hall, 1 Metropolitan Ave.– Dartmouth: Friday, March 16, 6–8 p.m., Cole Harbour Place, 51 Forest Hills Parkway — Halifax: Saturday, March 17, 1–3 p.m. Quality Inn and Suites, 980 Parkland Dr. — Cherry Brook: Saturday, March 17, 6–8 p.m., Black Cultural Centre, 10 Cherry Brook Rd.– Middleton: Saturday, March 24, 1–3 p.m., Nova Scotia Community College, Annapolis Valley Campus, 295 Commercial St.– Amherst: Saturday, March 31, 1–3 p.m., Wandlyn Inn, Highway 104, Exit 3– Stellarton: Saturday, March 31, 7–9 p.m., Holiday Inn Express, 86 Lawrence Blvd. — Louisdale: Friday, April 13, 6–8 p.m., Louisdale and District Fire Hall, Grand Anse– Sydney: Saturday, April 14, 1–3 p.m., Membertou Trade and Convention Centre, 50 Maillard St. — Baddeck: Saturday, April 14, 6–8 p.m., Inverary Resort, 368 Shore Rd.– Tusket: Thursday, April 19, 6–8 p.m., Salle Père-Maurice-LeBlanc in Centre communautaire de Par-en-Bas, 4258, route 308 — Church Point/Pointe-de-l’Église: Friday, April 20, 6–8 p.m.Location: Université Sainte-Anne, 1695, route 1– Bridgewater: Saturday, April 21, 1–3 p.m., Nova Scotia Community College, Lunenburg Campus, 75 High St. French interpretation services will be provided at the meetings in Halifax, Louisdale, Tusket and Church Point/Point-de-l’Église. A second round of public meetings will be held after the interim report is released. The final report and recommendations will be submitted by Aug. 31. Under the House of Assembly Act, an electoral boundary review is required after every 10-year census to reflect population shifts and to adjust electoral boundaries if necessary. Terms of reference were set by a select committee of the House of Assembly after consultation around the province. For more information or to submit feedback visit http://nselectoralboundaries.ca .last_img read more

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2 RJD leaders shot seriously injured

first_imgPatna:Two Rashtriya Janata Dal leaders were shot at and seriously injured by unidentified gunmen on Friday in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district, police said. Surendra Rai and Umashankar Rai were attacked by motorcycle borne criminals who indiscriminately fired at them, Deputy Superintendent of Police Mukul Ranjan said. Ranjan said two bullets hit Surendra rai and four hit Umashankar Rai. They were under treatment. According to the police, it prima facie appeared to be a case of political rivalry in a post Lok Sabha poll scenario.last_img read more

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Going steadily towards stability

first_imgAllaying the critical state of the slumping Indian economy, the impact of which has been coming to light from different sectors, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s announcement of a third set of decisions pertaining to the export and housing sectors will likely revive the economy and take it closer to a place of stability. With a Rs 50,000 crore export incentive scheme and a Rs 10,000 crore special window to provide last mile funding for unfinished housing projects, targeting these crucial sectors are especially vital as they are drivers of several other associated economic activities. This fresh set of announcements seek to boost exports which had contracted 6.05 per cent in August, and ease the plight of home buyers. These large scale corrective steps came following the big announcements to first, to encourage private sector investment, and then try and bring about stability in the crucial banking system by means of a merger of select public sector banks. With respect to the housing sector, instating a special provision, a fund to provide last-mile funding for housing projects that are not categorised as non-performing assets (NPAs) and are not undergoing National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) proceedings is particularly a striking move as it focuses on the construction and completion of unfinished units. There are several projects that are stalled due to funding issues should now get moving with this new norm. Along the lines of the National Investment and Infrastructure Fund, the government intends to contribute to the fund while other investors would be LIC and some other institutions and private capital from the likes of banks and sovereign funds. Close to 3.5 lakh dwelling units (non NPA and non NCLT) in the country are plagued with last mile funding problem. The government’s contribution to this fund, which is to be professionally run with experts from housing and banking sectors, is said to be Rs 10,000 crore and the other investors are expected to contribute a comparable same amount. In a step to increase bank credit for home buyers, the guidelines for external commercial borrowing will be relaxed to facilitate financing for home buyers who are eligible under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) and this is in addition to the existing norms for ECB for affordable housing; the interest rate on house building advances will be also lowered and linked with the 10 Year Government Security yields. Not only is this a welcome change for the common buyer seeking a home, a specific point of government servants was also considered as they form a major chunk of demand for houses. This move is directed towards the purchase of freshly constructed houses, most of which are built away from the heart of the main city. Encouraging settlements in new areas and developing them in the process is quantitatively a marker of economic growth and qualitatively, a sign of prosperity as human settlement brings with it the scope of all the necessary changes that turn a place from a piece of land to centre of peaceful living complete with all the basic essentials from food to convenient services, to institutions for healthcare, education, recreation, etc. and generating just about as much employment. As the seed of economic growth is allowed to germinate, the development form these efforts approach fruitition, another class of components will be readied to drive the economy towards greater achievements and sustained prosperity. Also Read – A compounding difficultyWith the other major announcement on the export front, instating the Scheme for Remission of Duties or Taxes on Export Product (RoDTEP) to replace the Merchandise Exports from India Scheme (MEIS) is the highlight. The new set of measures for exports sector came include steps that would comprehensively address tax and duties refunds for exporters, improve credit flow to the export sector, and launch of a special free trade agreement (FTA) utilisation mission. Both MEIS and the new RoDTEP are designed to incentivise exports by giving them rewards to offset the duties they pay to export their products. The rate of reward under MEIS varies between 2 per cent and 7 per cent of the free-on-board (FOB) value, depending on the item and the country it is being exported to. The new scheme will be a greater incentive to exporters but details are not specified as the rewards will be calculated on the basis of the actual duty paid. Textiles and all other sectors which currently have incentives up to 2 per cent over MEIS will transit into RoDTEP from January 1, 2020. The Finance Minister has announces that in effect, RoDTEP will more than adequately incentivise exporters than the existing schemes put together. The revenue foregone is projected at up to Rs 50,000 crore per year. Another measure to free up working capital of exporters has been the announcement of a fully electronic refund module for the quick and automated refund of input tax credits which will become operational by the end of this month. In order to increase bank credit to exporters, Export Credit Guarantee Corporation (ECGC) will expand the scope of its Export Credit Insurance Scheme to provide a higher insurance cover to banks that are lending working capital for exports. The situation at present is that banks are covered for 60 per cent of what they lend to exporters for working capital. An increase in this to 90 per cent is the new norm. Credit flow to exporters has come down by 35 per cent but this move should increase export credit by about Rs 4,000 crore in the first year and Rs 5,000 crore in the second year. This initiative will come at a cost of about Rs 1,700 crore per year to the exchequer and would enable a reduction in the overall cost of export credit inclusive of interest rates, especially to MSMEs. In tandem with, the Reserve Bank of India is also looking into modifying the priority sector lending norms for the export sector to release an additional sum of Rs 36,000 crore to Rs 68,000 crore as export credit. Along with giving credit and incentives to exporters, the reforms package also comes with ways to make the export sector more efficient and globally competitive. The entire process of export clearances will be digitised and all offline or manual processes will be eliminated to reduce the time to export. An action plan to reduce the time to export and turn-around time in airports and ports benchmarked to international standards is said to be implemented by December 2019. With a view of making exports more competitive, steps include working with exporters to help them best exploit the advantages of the various free trade agreements India has signed with other countries, increasing the testing and certification infrastructure in India, and enforcing the time-bound adoption by industry of all necessary mandatory technical standards. In order to bring the dividends from pushed-up exports to people in general, India will also now host annual mega shopping festivals in four places. Also Read – An askew democracyThe newly announced package of measures for boosting exports and lending a much-needed helping hand to the housing sector will steadily not only revive the economy but also bring it at a pedestal where prosperity from fundamental economic development will set in motion necessary development in various other sectors directly influencing the common man. Duly directing attention to the stressed sectors, a fillip to the housing sector, in particular, is one to ensure this elevated level basics. Having witnessed the dip in growth and a general situation of recession, the priority of reviving the economy is very correctly in place as a healthy economy is a most primary component of a thriving nation and its people.last_img read more

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King Mohammed VI’s Speech Represents Views of All Moroccans: Benkirane

Rabat – Abdelilah Benkirane released a statement on Thursday saying King Mohammed VI’s speech during the opening ceremony of the Gulf Cooperation Council summit on Tuesday represented the point of view of not just himself, but the Moroccan government and its subjects as well.The statement obtained by Morocco World News detailed the head of government’s stance. “His majesty the King, as he spoke, was speaking by the tongue of his people in full and was representative of us all and the government,” he said.“Today I want to confirm this sense and explain that we are one body behind the King, whether it comes to defending our southern provinces, or to confirm our position on terrorism or to defend against attempts to give a distorted image of our religion,” he added. Morocco’s stances can be described as “clear” and “explicit” in all three issues, according to Benkirane.Over the past year, the North African country’s intelligence services have contributed to international manhunts for the perpetrators of the “Islamic” State (ISIS) claimed attacks in Brussels and Paris, garnering the attention and praise of U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and other world leaders.The king opened two institutes for the training of Imams, or mosque leaders, in the past year and signed agreements with several European and African countries to continue the education of Islamic preachers – both male and female –  on the peaceful and tolerant attitudes of Islam in the institutes.In regards to the Western Sahara issue, the kingdom proposed an autonomy plan for the territorial dispute in the region in 2007, which would grant self-governance to the Sahrawis on local issues under the sovereignty of the Moroccan flag. The plan has been supported as a legitimate path to the end of the dispute with the separatist Polisario Front by several countries in Africa and Europe, as well as the United States.The national leader also referred to the neighboring Algerian state – known to support the Front – as Morocco’s “neighbors” and “brothers” and used the Arabic term for the phrase “God forbid” to describe an outbreak of war between the countries were the Western Sahara dispute to further distance the two states politically.“Yesterday’s speech by the king, and the decisions that emerged from the summit offer a model of joint Arab action – a positive model – rather than models that radiate negative images, which radiate ruin and destruction,” Benkirane said. “The positive model offers images of hope in the future.”Earlier this year, the Moroccan foreign ministry announced that it will cancel the Arab League summit that was set to be held in Marrakesh due to the “disunity” among Arab countries. read more

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Activists and Politicians to Protest Against MBS’ Visit to Tunisia

Rabat – Bin Salman is set to arrive in Tunisia on November 27, as part of his first tour abroad since the assassination of prominent Saudi journalist, Jamal Khashoggi, at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.Bin Salman, also known as MBS, is being widely viewed as the main culprit in giving the green light for Khashoggi’s assassination. Tunisian government spokesperson Saida Qarash confirmed MBS’ visit to Tunisia via a local radio station, adding that her country condemns Khashoggi’s murder and calls for revealing the truth. Hundreds of people are expected to gather in front of the presidential palace in Carthage to express their opposition to MBS’s visit to the country, Tunisian activist Tarek Kahlawi told Al Jazeera.“It is a shame that Tunisia, which has witnessed a democratic transition and a revolution against tyranny and dictatorship, will receive a criminal whose hands were stained with the blood of Saudis and Yemenis,” he was quoted by Al Jazeera as saying.Hamma Hammami, spokesperson of the main opposition party, Popular Front, also denounced MBS’s visit and considered it as a “provocation to the Tunisian people and its revolution and principles.”Read also: Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin SalmanOn the other hand, a group of Tunisian lawyers have said they would fill a lawsuit at the request of bloggers and journalists who reject the Saudi crown prince’s visit.MBS is on a visit to several countries to strengthen Saudi Arabia’s relations internationally and regionally.Bin Salman arrived to Abu Dhabi on Thursday November 22, and will visit other Arab countries including Bahrain, Egypt, and Algeria. The Saudi Crown Prince is due to attend the G20 summit in Argentina at the end of November, where he will meet with the world leaders, including the Turkish Recep Tayyip Erdogan who has accused him of being implicated in Khashoggi’s murder. read more

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Multilateralism the focus on second day of Assembly Presidents visit to Austria

27 June 2008The importance of effective multilateralism, the need for United Nations reform and the fight against human trafficking were all high on the agenda during talks with Austrian leaders and UN officials on the second day of General Assembly President Srgjan Kerim’s official visit to the European country. Mr. Kerim and Austrian President Heinz Fischer discussed the value of multilateralism and the ongoing efforts to reform the UN during their meeting today, according to a statement released by Mr. Kerim’s office. They also talked about the priority issues of the current session of the 192-member Assembly.Mr. Kerim also toured the UN headquarters in Vienna and held separate meetings with the heads of the various international agencies that are based in the Austrian capital.This included Antonio Maria Costa, Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC); Tibor Tóth, Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO); Yoshiteru Uramoto, Deputy Director General of the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO); and Mohamed ElBaradei, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).Mr. Costa and Mr. Kerim discussed human trafficking during their meeting while Mr. Uramoto and the Assembly President focused on system-wide coherence within the UN.Mr. Kerim will stay in Austria through Monday for further meetings, discussions and public events, before heading to Italy and then the United Arab Emirates. He has already visited Switzerland and Liechtenstein on this trip. read more

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TSX Wall Street rise along with oil prices

TORONTO — Canada’s main index gained ground for the third straight day, riding a wave of rising oil prices.The S&P/TSX composite index was up 214.16 points at 12,591.93 for a cumulative gain over the last three days of nearly 450 points.The oil-sensitive Canadian dollar was also trading higher, up 0.27 of a U.S. cent at 71.18 cents US.In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 125.18 points to 16,069.64, while the S&P 500 advanced 10.41 points to 1,893.36 and the Nasdaq added 38.51 points to 4,506.68.In commodities, the main focus was on oil, where the March contract for benchmark North American crude was up 92 cents at US$33.22 a barrel after having been as high as US$34.82 earlier in the session.The March natural gas contract was up 2.5 cents at US$2.182 per mmBtu, while April gold gave back 20 cents to US$1,116.10 an ounce and March copper lost a penny to US$2.05 a pound. read more

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Task Force proposal for foreign judges in war probe rejected

The Task Force has proposed that international participation in Sri Lanka be phased out once confidence is established in a purely domestic mechanism.Senaratne said that even if a Government appointed committee makes a proposal it is for the Government to decide the way forward. The Final Consultation Task Force report on Reconciliation Mechanisms which was handed over to former President Chandrika Bandarnaike Kumarathunga, has called for a hybrid court to hear cases related to the war. A proposal to have foreign judges to investigate incidents related to the war was rejected again by the Government today.Government spokesman Dr. Rajitha Senaratne said that anyone can make a proposal calling for foreign judges to be involved in the probe on the war but the Government stand is final. A Government appointed Task Force has proposed that foreign judges be involved in the domestic process to investigate the war. The Minister said the Government is clear in its stand that a purely domestic mechanism will be used to investigate incidents related to the war while foreign technical assistance will be used if required.The report of the Task Force combines and provides a detailed understanding of the consultations that have taken place over the past year.The Secretariat for Coordinating Reconciliation Mechanisms said the report will be of key importance in setting up subsequent Transitional Justice Mechanisms that are envisioned by the Government and the findings of the report will be taken into consideration when designing the aforementioned Transitional Justice mechanisms. (Colombo Gazette) read more

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UN study finds Sri Lankan children going online without supervision

“As Sri Lanka identifies and positions itself for a new role in the wider region, and drives to become a knowledge-based economy as a route to further prosperity, it is clear that the digital skills and wellbeing of its young people will be fundamental. By utilizing the insight presented in this report, and by implementing the clear recommendations, we can help to ensure that we maximize the vast opportunities provided by digital technology to children, whilst minimizing the risk of harm, for the benefit of all in Sri Lanka” added Sutton.Among the several recommendations for action, the study highlights the need to provide an increasing amount of quality online content in the Sinhala and Tamil languages. UNICEF’s global The State of the World’s Children 2017 report: Children in a digital world revealed that approximately 56 per cent all websites are in English and many children cannot find content they understand or that is culturally relevant.Other key recommendations presented at the launch event included the need to;Enact legislation to ensure the safe use of the Internet by children, including revising the ‘Computer Crimes Act’ in terms online safety of children.Establish a self-regulatory body of industry partners (telecom and IT in particular) to develop ‘codes of good practices’ to guide the Internet industry on measures required to keep children safe online;Encourage Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to introduce network-level parental controls to customers, which would give parents the choice and the means of protecting their children online. In this respect, given the expansion of Wi-Fi hotspots in towns and cities in Sri Lanka, an accreditation mark for child-friendly Wi-Fi zones is recommended;Develop age-specific educational and training material into the IT curriculum in schools to build students’ knowledge of digital literacy and safety on the Internet, online security teacher training and ensure that this content is available online and in all three languages.An expert panel discussion was also held as part of the launch event, which included Roshan Chandraguptha – Sri Lanka CERT, Ms. Mahishaa Balraj – Hashtag Generation, Ms. Shalini Ratwatte – Microsoft Sri Lanka, Dr. Ruvan Weerasinghe – University of Colombo; Dr. Paula Bulancea – UNICEF, and Isura Silva – Sarvodaya Fusion. (Colombo Gazette) UNICEF launched a new report today entitled ‘Keeping Children Safe and Empowered Online: A study on Sri Lanka’s digital landscape’ to mark Safer Internet Day 2018. With an estimated 6.7 million internet users in Sri Lanka in 2018 representing 32 per cent of the total population, a rise from 4 million in 2015, internet usage is growing across all age groups.  Yet whilst 28.3 per cent of people in Sri Lanka are ‘computer literate’, this differs substantially by age, rising to 60.7 per cent of 15 -19 year old’s compared to just 19.9 per cent of 40 to 49 year old’s. This represents a rise in overall computer literacy, across all age groups since the report data was collected in 2015.The report highlights that many parents feel a ‘knowledge gap’ between themselves and their children in terms of digital technology, resulting in some parents holding a negative view of the internet. 41.8 per cent of children who are not online responded that they did not access the Internet as ‘their parents did not allow them to’.With poverty, gender, geographical location and parental control limiting the opportunities of some children to engage with digital technology, the report also highlighted a difference in terms of career aspiration and employment prospects. When asked, 25 per cent of respondent boys hoped to gain employment in engineering compared to just 9 per cent of girls. Moreover, 6.2 per cent of boys hoped to find employment in IT or software related industries compared to just 1.9 per cent of girls. The report highlights that whilst children and adolescents are increasingly going online, they are doing so without adult oversight or supervision.When asked, 53.6 per cent of child online IT users responded that they were ‘self-taught’ about the internet, compared to 16.5 per cent who were ‘taught by parents’. IIn terms of online behaviour 46.3 per cent of child online IT users had communicated with people they did not know online, with 27.9 per cent of these respondents having physically met an online-stranger in person. “Digital technology and the internet has the potential to be a game changer for children and adolescents in Sri Lanka – especially vulnerable and disadvantaged communities – by providing new opportunities to learn, socialize, make their voices heard and prepare for the future” said Tim Sutton, Representative, UNICEF Sri Lanka adding “However, these same technologies can also be a dividing line, exacerbating and enabling inequities to prevail. We must work together to ensure the benefits and opportunities of the digital world are open to all children while ensuring their safety and security online”While digital access exposes children to a wealth of benefits and opportunities, it can also unlock a host of risks including the misuse of their private information, access to harmful content, and cyberbullying. A concerning 18.3 per cent of these young people had done so without informing anyone. 15.1 per cent of respondents admitted to giving true, private information such as their name, age, telephone number and email to strangers online. A proportion of those who undertake risky behavior admitted to sending nasty messages that could hurt someone’s feelings (24.8 per cent) and sending or uploading ‘adult’ images, video, text (10.7 per cent). 25 per cent of child online-IT users were not aware of the privacy settings for their online accounts. The study reveals that while 52.8 per cent of young people in Sri Lanka access the internet – with the average age of first access being 13 years – there is a significant ‘digital divide’ based on gender, geographical location and poverty. Specifically, among the 11 – 18 year old’s 67.6 per cent are boys reported having online access compared to just 33.1 per cent of girls. Regional variances show that 67.8 per cent of respondents from urban areas were online users, compared to 47.1 per cent from rural locations and just 39.3 per cent from plantation areas. The report shows, for the first time, how adolescents access and use the internet in Sri Lanka, and recommends key actions to ensure that young people benefit from the full, positive potential of these technologies, whilst minimizing the potential for harm. read more

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South Sudan UN refugee agency warns of worsening civilian situation

A group of refugees from South Sudan at a settlement in Uganda. Photo: UNICEF/UNI183475/Wandera Recent fighting between Government and opposition forces in Western Bahr al Ghazal has displaced more than 96,000 people to Wau town, in the northwest of the country, Ariane Rummery, spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), told reporters in Geneva, noting that neighbouring countries are now reporting rising refugee inflows. “With the Regional Refugee Response Plan funded at just 8 per cent, many life-saving services are threatened,” Ms. Rummery said. “UNHCR is extremely concerned.” The spokesperson said that an estimated 52,000 South Sudanese have fled into Sudan since late January, exceeding planning projections for 2016. At present, the refugees are mainly in East and South Darfur and West Kordofan. UNHCR non-food item distributions by truck in East Darfur are expected to begin on Wednesday and distributions have already taken place to all new arrivals in South Darfur and to some of the new population in West Kordofan, she said. Ms. Rummery noted that the World Food Programme (WFP) has been distributing one-month food rations to new arrivals in East and South Darfur, and is prepared to begin distributions in West Kordofan pending security clearance from authorities. Together with partner agencies, a three-month response plan has been prepared to accommodate an additional 120,000 new arrivals before June. In addition, Ms. Rummery said that Uganda has seen a sharp increase in refugee arrivals from South Sudan since January, sometimes as many as 800 individuals per day. In all, 28,000 South Sudanese – 86 per cent of them women and children – have sought refuge in Uganda. The site where the South Sudanese refugees are sheltered, Maaji III, which is in the north-west of the country, is nearing capacity and basic life-saving services and other services are severely stretched, the spokesperson said. She also said that Ethiopia, which hosts some 285,000 South Sudanese refugees, is seeing a recent – albeit more modest – increase in arrivals after a long period in which there were very few new refugees. This recent spike in the rate of arrivals from South Sudan followed a long lull with an average daily arrival rate of less than one for the past two months, according to Ms. Rummery. UNHCR and partners have been providing basic assistance, including corn soya blend to children, plastic sheets, mosquito nets, blankets, sleeping mats and water jerry cans at the camp. Ms. Rummery went on to say that while fighting has subsided in the Western Equatoria region of South Sudan since February, some 12,000 people crossed into the Democratic Republic of the Congo and sought shelter in the north-eastern province of Haut-Uélé in the past few months. The local communities have been welcoming of the refugees, but capacities are stretched, and thousands of the more recent arrivals have settled in very precarious conditions. The area is difficult to access and there are few humanitarian organizations present, the spokesperson said. In addition, the conflict in Western Equatoria has forced thousands of South Sudanese from Source Yubu and Ezo to cross the border and seek asylum in the Central African Republic. As of 11 April, UNHCR had registered 10,454 South Sudanese refugees in the town of Bambouti, located in a difficult-to-reach area in the easternmost part of the Central African Republic. The new arrivals in Bambouti greatly outnumber the host community, estimated at about 950 inhabitants, putting a severe strain on resources. Many refugees are suffering from malaria, waterborne diseases and malnutrition. Access to potable water, food, health care, sanitation and shelter is urgently needed for the entire population, Ms. Rummery said. The spokesperson also said that UNHCR’s Kakuma Operation in north-eastern Kenya has recorded a steady increase in new arrivals from South Sudan, rising from an average of 100 people a month at the start of this year to 350 people a week over the past two months. Ms. Rummery noted that 2.3 million people have had to flee their homes since violence broke out in South Sudan in December 2013, 678,000 of these across borders as refugees and 1.69 million displaced inside the country. read more

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Borough Market to ban plastic bottles for free water fountains

first_imgborough market  Ellie Weehuizen, 32, using one of the new drinking fountainsCredit:PA Three new drinking fountains have been introduced to the market, providing visitors with easy access to free water.Darren Henaghan, the market’s managing director, hopes others will be inspired by the move and also consider ditching plastic bottles.“By using the new Borough Fountains our visitors will be able to refill and refresh without having to buy a plastic bottle each time,” he said.“We are proud to take this significant step forward as part of our ongoing commitment to making Borough Market Britain’s greenest place to shop, and hope that others will follow suit.” Three water fountains have been installed Credit:PA Ellie Weehuizen, 32, using one of the new drinking fountains Borough Market says it does all it can to minimise its own impact on the environment while championing sustainable systems of food production and consumption“None of the rubbish disposed of in the Market currently goes to landfill,” the market says.   Borough Market is ditching plastic water bottles and introducing free water fountains for customers to use instead.The famous food market in London Bridge aims to tackle plastic pollution by phasing out the sale of bottled over the next six months.Instead, they plan to introduce refillable bottles made from recycled plastic, which will be available to buy from stalls around the market. 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. “Cardboard, paper, plastic, glass and wood are all recycled and food waste is sent to an anaerobic digestion plant—and the packaging provided by traders is almost entirely bio-degradable and compostable.”Borough Market reopened for business in June following the terror attack which left eight dead. last_img read more

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Apple travaillerait sur sa propre carte SIM pour iPhone

first_imgApple travaillerait sur sa propre carte SIM pour iPhoneApple serait actuellement en négociations avec un fabricant français de cartes à puce pour produire ses propres cartes SIM. La firme à la pomme obtiendrait alors plus de pouvoirs sur le marché de la téléphonie mobile.L’information, publiée par le site high tech Giga OM, n’a pas encore été confirmée par Apple ou par le fabricant de cartes à puce, Gemalto. Si tel était le cas, la firme de Cupertino pourrait ainsi contourner les opérateurs de téléphonie mobile existants, déjà mis sur la touche de l’App Store.Elle aurait alors une mainmise quasi absolue sur ses terminaux mobiles iPhone et iPad, et pourrait les vendre plus facilement. Les consommateurs auraient seulement à se connecter sur le site web d’Apple ou à se rendre dans ses boutiques pour pouvoir acheter leur appareil, et choisir leur forfait. La carte SIM serait directement intégrée à l’iPhone.Ces négociations concerneraient uniquement le marché européen. On attend à présent confirmation de la part d’Apple.  Le 28 octobre 2010 à 18:43 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

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Économie dénergie Le gouvernement lance un plan de rénovation thermique pour les

first_imgÉconomie d’énergie : Le gouvernement lance un plan de rénovation thermique pour les logements mal isolésHier, le président de la République, François Hollande, a annoncé la mise en place d’aides à la rénovation thermique des 4 millions d’habitations très mal isolées.Hier, François Hollande a annoncé la mise en place d’une série de mesures en faveur du logement. Il s’agira notamment de procéder à la rénovation énergétique des 4 millions d’habitations très mal isolées. En effet, en France, les 20 % de logements les plus anciens consomment la moitié de l’énergie totale. Il était donc temps de réagir. Selon les spécialistes, les travaux de rénovation thermique représenteront au total huit milliards d’euros par an jusqu’en 2017.Les premières années seront coûteusesCes travaux concerneront essentiellement les logements les moins isolés et donc les plus gourmands en énergie. Ce chantier achevé, d’ici huit ans, la France devrait bénéficier d’un retour sur investissement de 4 milliards d’euros par an en raison des quantités énergétiques économisées. Comme le souligne le cabinet Sia Partners, qui publie une étude sur le sujet, “ce scénario nécessite d’importantes dépenses sur les quatre premières années mais les résultats sont au rendez-vous puisque ce sont ensuite 4 milliards qui seraient économisés chaque année sur la facture énergétique”.Au final, il s’agit donc d’un plan jugé “très rentable”.Objectif : 500.000 logements par an Selon le ministère du Logement, à l’heure actuelle, seuls 120.000 logements privés et 25.000 logements sociaux bénéficient actuellement d’une rénovation énergétique performante chaque année. Pour atteindre “l’ambitieux” objectif de 500.000 par an, le cabinet de conseil Carbone4 estime qu’il faudrait plus correctement orienter les incitations fiscales (l’Eco PTZ et le crédit d’impôt développement durable ou CIDD) et mieux cibler les travaux. Une optimisation qui aura bien lieu a confirmé le gouvernement, qui a également annoncé une prime exceptionnelle de 1.350 euros pendant deux ans pour les plus précaires.À lire aussiLa fusion nucléaire pourrait bien devenir prochainement une réalitéSelon Emmanuel Blanchet, de Carbone4, “avec deux milliards d’euros on peut faire quelque chose de très bien”, sachant que les travaux s’élèvent à 20.000 euros par logement en moyenne. Au final, grâce à ces rénovations énergétiques, le gouvernement vise 38 % d’économies énergétiques, conformément à l’objectif fixé par le Grenelle de l’environnement en 2007.Méfiance sur les effets pervers de consommation Néanmoins, Emmanuel Blanchet note que les économies totales pourraient être moins importantes qu’espéré en raison d’un possible “effet rebond”. En effet, les ménages vivant dans des “passoires thermiques” et qui limitent aujourd’hui fortement leur consommation, pourraient modifier à la hausse leur comportement après la rénovation de leur logement. “Les comportements de consommation minent en effet les économies d’énergie attendues [ … ], selon le phénomène de l’effet rebond, qui peut annuler de 5 à 50 % de ces gains”.Le 22 mars 2013 à 19:00 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

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Apple Releases 129 Smart Battery Cases for iPhone XS XS Max and

first_img These Razer Cases Will Keep Your iPhone 11 Cool While GamingiPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro Have More Cameras, More Problems Good news for iPhone XR and XS owners looking for a new case for their device. Apple just released three new smart battery cases for its newest iPhones, now available for purchase on the Apple Store website.The release marks the first time Apple has launched a battery case since the one for the iPhone 7.The smart battery cases for the iPhone XS, XS Max, and XR are available for $129, in both black and white silicone designs. They feature an elastomer hinge design to make it easy to put the case on and take it off, and a soft-touch silicone exterior, according to the product description on the Apple Store.Apple also says the iPhone XS battery case offers up to 21 hours of internet use or 25 hours of video playback, while the iPhone XS Max case offers up to 20 hours of internet use or 25 hours of video playback, and the iPhone XR case offers up to 22 hours of internet use or 27 hours of video playback.With the smart battery case on, the intelligent battery status is displayed on the iPhone Lock screen and in Notification Center, so users know exactly how much charge is left, similar to how users monitor connected AirPods and Apple Watch charges.The case is compatible with Qi-certified chargers, so users can wirelessly charge their phone with the case on. According to Apple, iPhones can be charged even faster with USB-PD compatible chargers.The cases can be ordered now and will be available in stores on Jan. 18.More on Geek.com:New Mophie Battery Cases Solve Dumb iPhone Port ProblemSuspect Remotely Wipes iPhone X While It Sits in Police EvidenceApple Reportedly Planning Three New iPhones (With Better Rear Cameras) Stay on targetlast_img read more

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NHBC appoints Johnson

first_imgNational House Building Council (NHBC) has appointed Louise Johnson reward consultant. In this role, Johnson will support the selection, management and communication of benefits, as well as tackle HR and reward review projects.Previously, Johnson worked as HR associate at German pharmaceutical organisation Grünenthal.last_img

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States wildfire season largely uneventful according to officials

first_imgThe smoke plume of the Livingston Fire approximately 15 miles southwest of Fairbanks in the Rosie Creek area as seen from Mile 339 of the Parks Highway early Sunday evening. (Don Anderson/Alaska Division of Forestry)A shed and an outhouse.Those are the only structures that have burned in Alaska’s wildfire season this summer, according to officials.Listen nowWildfires have burned just 270,000 acres in the state this year. That’s far short of the 1.2 million acres that burn during a normal season.“In the press release I’m just writing up, I used the word ‘largely uneventful,’” state Division of Forestry spokesman Tim Mowry said.The division is one of several state and federal agencies responsible for fighting wildfires in Alaska.On Tuesday, those agencies said they’re sending 100 of Alaska’s wildland firefighters out-of-state. Five crews are flying to Idaho to be dispatched to fires around the Western U.S.The main cause for this year’s slow fire season? Mowry says there haven’t been any long periods of hot, dry weather.There have still been 288 fires in Alaska this year. And they’ve burned 425 square miles — more than a third of the area of Rhode Island.But most of those fires have been far from densely populated areas.Two blazes are currently getting serious attention from firefighters. They’re outside the tiny village of Chalkyitsik. That’s about 170 miles northeast of Fairbanks.James Nathaniel is Chalkyitsik’s tribal administrator.“Everybody was getting excited because you could actually see the smoke coming from the fire,” Nathaniel said.Lightning started the two fires in early July.Officials say the area where they’re burning, the Yukon Flats, is among the driest in the state. But firefighters are now making progress in getting them under control.Even without fires threatening urban areas, the state has still budgeted about $23 million for firefighting and prevention this year.Some crews have been fighting fires. Others have been working on projects to create barriers, to make it easier to stop fires when they start in the future.Mowry said it’s worth paying to have crews on hand in case a major blaze breaks out.“That’s how this business works is, you can’t just flip a switch and have people there, ready to go,” Mowry said. “There’s a lot of planning and training and everything every year that goes into this.”last_img read more

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Sessions Remarks About Illegal Immigration and Crime in Houston Are No Coincidence

first_img Share 00:00 /12:38 Listen Davis Land/Houston Public MediaU.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks to Attorney’s Office staff and reporters on August 10, 2018, in Houston, TX.U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions visited Houston Friday and talked about how illegal immigrants can engage in criminal activity and praised Texas lawmakers for passing SB4 in 2017, a state law that targets so called sanctuary cities. A political expert thinks that wasn’t a coincidence.Brandon Rottinghaus, a political science professor at the University of Houston, told Houston Matters that, although some research studies have concluded increases in illegal immigration haven’t caused crime to go up, what could matter at the end of the day is a perception of whether or not that happens.“Since the 1990s, crime has fallen considerably and violent crimes have fallen even more,” Rottinghaus said, but “that’s not to say that there’s not a perception that violent crime is increasing.”“And that’s really what most academic work on the subject points to, that people don’t have to have a tangible view, a realistic sense of what’s happening. Rather, it’s what they feel and, so, when Republicans talk about these issues, about violent crime, about how first responders have to be backed in this way, it is something that they can make people feel, even if reality doesn’t match up,” the expert noted.GOP concernRottinghaus also thinks a reason why Sessions visited Houston is that “Republicans are worried that Texas may drift away from Trump” because of the economic issues the President has pushed.The expert explained that, for instance, tariffs or a NAFTA renegotiation that could end up hurting trade at the southern border could be good for some of Trump’s base, but may hurt Texas.Sessions said that the state of Texas and seven Texan mayors are filing a brief in court to support an effort by the Department of Justice to redirect federal grant money from jurisdictions that don’t cooperate with federal law enforcement agencies, which are commonly referred to as sanctuary cities, to those that do.Rottinghaus explained that the federal money that could be redirected can, for example, fund the staffing of certain judicial courts.For the expert, withholding federal funding won’t bring a local government to its knees, but “it definitely will hurt the bottom line because county and city government all over Texas and all over the country, frankly, are pretty strapped for cash.” To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: X last_img read more

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25 minutes of Yoga may boost energy levels

first_imgPractising Hatha yoga – a combination of asanas, pranayam and meditation – along with mindfulness meditation daily for just 25 minutes can significantly improve brain function and energy levels, according to a new study. Hatha yoga is one of the most common styles of yoga practiced in Western countries.It involves physical postures and breathing exercises combined with meditation. Mindfulness mediation involves observing thoughts, emotions and body sensations with openness and acceptance. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe study found that practicing Hatha yoga or mindfulness meditation for a brief session per day can boost the brain’s executive functions, cognitive abilities linked to goal-directed behavior and the ability to control knee-jerk emotional responses, habitual thinking patterns and actions.”Hatha yoga and mindfulness meditation both focus the brain’s conscious processing power on a limited number of targets like breathing and posing, and also reduce processing of nonessential information,” said Peter Hall, associate professor at University of Waterloo in Canada. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive”These two functions might have some positive carryover effect in the near-term following the session, such that people are able to focus more easily on what they choose to attend to in everyday life,” Hall said.Thirty-one study participants completed 25 minutes of Hatha yoga, 25 minutes of mindfulness meditation, and 25 minutes of quiet reading (a control task) in randomised order.Following both the yoga and meditation activities, participants performed significantly better on executive function tasks compared to the reading task. “This finding suggests that there may be something special about meditation – as opposed to the physical posing – that carries a lot of the cognitive benefits of yoga,” said Kimberley Luu, lead author of the study published in the journal Mindfulness.The study also found that mindfulness meditation and Hatha yoga were both effective for improving energy levels, but Hatha yoga had significantly more powerful effects than meditation alone.”There are a number of theories about why physical exercises like yoga improve energy levels and cognitive test performance,” said Luu.”These include the release of endorphins, increased blood flow to the brain, and reduced focus on ruminative thoughts.Though ultimately, it is still an open question,” she said.”Although the meditative aspect might be even more important than the physical posing for improving executive functions, there are additional benefits to Hatha yoga including improvements in flexibility and strength,” said Hall.”These benefits may make Hatha yoga superior to meditation alone, in terms of overall health benefits,” he said.Hatha refers to the physical practice of yoga, so any poses that involve reaching, bending, twisting, balancing or squeezing your body falls into this category. This physical practice is distinct from the breath work and meditation that are also part of a comprehensive yoga practice.Many Hatha poses improve your core strength – that’s the center of your body, consisting of the spine, abs and hips. A strong core keeps you functional and wards off injury; it also improves your performance in sports and fitness. Poses such as Boat, Plank and Downward-Facing dog strengthen your external obliques; Chair and Warrior I target your buttocks; and Chair and the half-lift improve the strength in your paraspinals, which are the muscles surrounding your spine and assist when you twist and bend.When practiced regularly, Hatha yoga poses improve multiple aspects important to physical fitness. As revealed in a study published in a 2001 issue of Preventive Cardiology, a minimum of two yoga classes attended per week for eight weeks improved oxygen uptake, muscular strength and endurance and joint mobility.last_img read more

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