In January 2019, when the Uttar Pradesh government organises the Kumbh Mela, it will have a special unit to help: a volunteer force of ex-servicemen. The Ganga Task Force (GTF), specially trained by the Ministry of Defence will help with crowd management, spread awareness on keeping the river clean and stop people and industry from polluting the river.Currently, a “battalion” of 300 personnel has already been trained and stationed in Allahabad. Plans are afoot to expand it to 500 and post them in Kanpur and Varanasi, said Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, Director-General, National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG).“The GTF is a unit of the Territorial Army deployed in the services of the Ganga with the approval of Ministry of Defence for four years till December 2020. It consists of three companies of over 100 men each to be stationed at Kanpur, Allahabad and Varanasi, with the Battalion headquarters at Allahabad. The full strength would be 532, including 9 officers and 29 Junior Commanding Officers (JCOs). Big mandate Their functions will include: Planting trees to check soil erosion, patrolling sensitive river areas for biodiversity protection, patrolling ghats, monitoring river pollution, and assisting during floods/natural calamity in the region,” says a note by the NMCG viewed by The Hindu.The jawans have also been trained by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to measure the health of the river.In 2015, the government, had cleared the creation of such a force. However, a defined mandate — such as to punish or imprison those found polluting the river — is being fleshed out in a forthcoming ‘Ganga Act,’ which is yet to be ironed out as a Bill and is under discussion. “They may have the right to bear arms, but we wouldn’t want them to be involved in imprisoning offenders, as that could conflict with the State police,” said Mr. Mishra.The jawans will have boats to keep a watch on activities, the note added.The NMCG runs the ‘Namami Gange’ mission to clean the Ganga river. It has a ₹20,000-crore, Centrally-funded, non-lapsable corpus and consists of nearly 288 projects.
MS Dhoni might be Bollywood’s latest entrant in the enviable 100 crore club in 2016, but in recent times the Bollywood framework has changed. It’s no longer a question of whether a film reaches Rs 100 crores or not. The question is in how many days. With multiplex chains opening up in most tier-2 and tier-3 cities apart from the metros, means that more many screens and multiple shows during the day. Even the ticket prices have steadily increased with a multiplex ticket costing a minimum of Rs 150 as against Rs 60-80 in a single screen.ALSO READ: When Ankita Lokhande called up ex-boyfriend Sushant Singh Rajput after watching MS Dhoni The Untold StoryALSO READ: MS Dhoni biopic continues to fly on Day 11 even after completing century at box office Sushant Singh Rajput’s MS Dhoni The Untold Story is capitalising on the Indian captain’s popularity and is earning the bucks in various languages – Marathi, Tamil and Telugu apart from Hindi, given Dhoni’s pan-India appeal. Let’s take a look at the films fastest to gross Rs 100 crore and how many days it took them.1. Sultan – 3 DaysThe Salman Khan-starrer has been Bollywood’s flag-bearer for 2016. Another Eid along with another Salman Khan release meant the fans lined up to lap up Bhai’s debut in a sports film as he played a washed-out Haryanvi wrestler, who makes a return to sport through MMA. The film reached the 100-crore mark in 3 days and went on to gross Rs 584 crore worldwide by the end of its run.advertisement2. Rustom – 9 daysAkshay Kumar’s film based on the famous KM Nanavati case of the 1960s took 9 days to cross the Rs 100-crore mark, making it Kumar’s third film to cross the feat in a single calendar year. Rustom was directed by debutant Tinu Suresh Desai and produced by Neeraj Pandey. Rustom went on to gross about Rs 218.8 crore at the end of its 5-week run.3. MS Dhoni The Untold Story – 9 days (including Tamil, Telugu and Marathi)Neeraj Pandey’s biopic based on India’s limited overs captain is singularly the highest opener for a Bollywood biopic and is on its way to becoming the most successful biopic of all time. The film including its dubbed versions in Tamil, Telugu and Marathi where it has done decently because of Captain Cool’s pan-India appeal.4. Airlift – 10 daysAn unlikely candidate to be in this list, thanks to Akshay Kumar’s starpower brought this gritty re-telling of the Kuwait evacuation of Indians during the Saddam Hussein invasion in 1990. The film reached the 100 crore mark in 10 days and went on to gross Rs 231.6 crore worldwide by the end of its run.5. Housefull 3 – 13 daysSajid Nadiadwala’s hit franchise banking again on the star-power of Akshay Kumar, Ritiesh Deshmukh and also adding Abhishek Bachchan to the mix meant the writing duo of Sajid-Farhad delivered yet another 100-crore movie. It took the film 13 days to deliver the franchise’s third consecutive 100-crore film, grossing Rs 188 crore worldwide by the end of its run.
Sri Lanka pacer Lasith Malinga will fly back home after his side’s clash against Bangladesh, which is scheduled to be played today, as Malinga’s mother-in-law passed away.However, the 35-year old pacer is likely to join the team in their next match which will be played against Australia on June 15.Lasith Malinga will leave the team following Sri Lanka’s World Cup game against Bangladesh, which will be played today, as his mother-in-law has passed away. He is expected to join the team, before the team’s next #CWC19 game, which will be played against Australia on 15th, Sri Lanka Cricket tweeted.After Sri Lanka faced a massive 10-wicket defeat at the hands of New Zealand, they managed to win their next match against Afghanistan by 34 runs. Malinga shined in the match as he took three wickets in the match and gave away just 39 runs from his 6.4 over.However, their third match against Pakistan was abandoned without a ball bowled due to rain.Sri Lanka will now compete with Bangladesh at Bristol County Ground today.Also Read | Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka, World Cup 2019 Match 16: Prediction and Probable Playing 11sAlso Read | World Cup 2019: Sri Lanka pacer Nuwan Pradeep to miss Bangladesh gameAlso See
With the strong dollar and greater connectivity, there’s always a reason to visit the City of Passions Buenos Aires, Argentina –January 21, 2019 –From Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day, to Pride and ringing in the new year, culture buffs, gastronomy lovers and every type of traveler in between can bask in the celebratory Argentine capital city of Buenos Aires in grand style throughout 2019. Buenos Aires beckons with a compelling exchange rate for the strong U.S. dollar, making this Latin American cultural capital a value-driven holiday travel destination. Whether seeking the ideal backdrop for post-holiday revelry or relief, discerning travelers to Buenos Aires can take advantage of a multitude of experiences catering to a wide array of interests this year: Chinese New Year:Feb.2 – Feb.3: Located in the Belgrano neighborhood, Buenos Aires’ Chinatown welcomes the Year of the Pig with hundreds of food stands, cultural displays and workshops during the annual two-day event. Diverse activities showcase Chinese culture, with free martial arts and calligraphy classes, music and dance shows, and the chance to take part in traditional tea ceremonies. The event features the traditional dragon and lion dances, along with Chinese percussion and singing. More notably, the renowned ballet of the Artistic Group of Zhejiang Province will be performing in the country for the first time to showcase different Chinese artistic interpretations. The celebration will be held at Plaza Parques Nacionales, Av. Figueroa Alcorta between Sucre and Echeverria. Carnaval Porteño:Feb. 2 – March 5: While Rio may have the world’s busiest Carnival, Buenos Aires’ traditional Fiesta de las Murgas, is an under the radar celebration ready to take center stage. Influenced by European, African and native Argentine culture, the spectacles of dance, drumming and musical street festivals are fueled by murgas, bands of marching percussionists and dancers decked out in satins and sequins. More than 100 murgas take place across different neighborhoods each weekend in February (from 7 p.m. until 2 a.m. on Saturdays and from 7 p.m. until midnight on Sundays) until the first weekend of March with that Monday and Tuesday being granted public holidays (March 4 and 5). Valentine’s Day:Feb. 14: Nothing is more suiting than celebrating the day of love and affection in the City of Many Passions. Idyllic backdrops for proposals, rekindling love or finding romance include a stroll across the Puente de la Mujer, the Bridge of Women, in Puerto Madero neighborhood. The bridge was designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava and is meant to symbolize a couple passionately embraced in tango, Argentina’s romantic gift to the world. Explore that passion further with dinner at Rojo Tangoinside Puerto Madero’s Hotel Faena, a fiery, racy spectacle that will leave you breathless. Patrick’s Day:March 17: Argentina is home to one of the largest Irish populations in the world. More than half a million strong, this community knows how to have a good time. Buenos Aires closes off Avenida de Mayo, one of the city’s main thoroughfares, for an Irish celebration of gastronomy, beer, dancing and mischievous leprechauns the Saturday before the holiday. That same weekend and on Día de San Patricio, head to the pedestrianized Reconquista Street in the MicroCentro or Downtown, for its concentration of Irish bars, like the Druid Inand The Kilkenny. Easter Day:April 21: The city that gave birth to the New World Pope, celebrates Catholic holidays in style, and Easter, known as Pascua, is no exception. Semana Santa, or Holy Week, is the period between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday, when you’ll find church ceremonies, including at Catedral Metropolitana, overlooking Plaza de Mayo in the colonial heart of Buenos Aires. This was Pope Francis’ church when he was Cardinal Bergoglio, Archbishop of Buenos Aires, and it contains a museum about his life and works. The Friday before Easter, look for Good Friday processions and ceremonies marking Jesus’ crucifixion, including a religious parade along Avenida de Mayo. New Year’s Eve: Dec. 31: North American travelers are certain to appreciate a sultry escape from the blistering cold as the Argentine capital city offers an array of opportunities to “party like a porteño” and a “see and be seen” scene at some of the city’s more stylish haunts. Regardless of visitors’ inclinations, a must-experience stop on the NYE itinerary is taking in the view of a spectacular fireworks display from Puerto Madero or counting down at the Obelisco on Avenida 9 de Julio, the world’s widest boulevard, where thousands of joyful citizens gather to welcome in the new year before dispersing to parties all over town. With direct connections from most major North American hubs, the city is easily reached from the United States. Also, limited changes in time zone means less jet lag to slow American travelers down as they celebrate their favorite holiday with a porteñotwist. For more information, visit travel.buenosaires.gob.ar. About the Autonomous City of Buenos AiresArgentina’s capital and most populous city, Buenos Aires, is located on the western shore of the Río de la Plata estuary, on the southeastern coast of South America. The city is neither part of Buenos Aires Province nor the province’s capital; rather, it is an autonomous district. Buenos Aires is a top tourist destination that offers a unique blend of European elegance and Latin American passion. Famous as the birthplace of tango, the city is also home to world-class opera, theater and art, well-preserved European-style architecture, native traditions, and to restaurants that overflow with wine from Mendoza and cuts of beef fresh from the Pampas. Ranked by The Economist as 2017’s best Latin American city to live in, Buenos Aires is made up of small, highly individualized neighborhoods, each with its own characteristic colors and forms. The destination attracts and satisfies vacationers of all tastes and budgets with its wide range of accommodations including luxury hotels, chic boutique hotels, and international brands. For more information on tourism, visit: https://turismo.buenosaires.gob.ar/en or follow Buenos Aires’ Facebook page or Instagram.
VERNON, B.C. – Cool and wet weather is helping crews fighting two wildfires in British Columbia.A fire discovered Tuesday in the Okanagan, northwest of Lumby, was fanned by high winds and officials have said it charred as much as eight hectares of trees and bush in the Cooper’s Mountain area.The flames prompted the Regional District of North Okanagan to issue an evacuation alert for about 30 homes in the area Tuesday night, but the alert was lifted Wednesday after overnight rain and snow.“With the weather conditions, some of the risks of the wind storm last night have abated,” said David Sewell, who works for the regional district. “From our perspective, it’s stable enough that we can lift the evacuation.”Crews were also fighting a fire southeast of Prince George, which has also been slowed by the weather, said fire information officer Amanda Reynolds.“The incident took substantial amounts of precipitation overnight and some snowfall overnight, and it has currently reduced any significant fire behaviour,” Reynolds said Wednesday.The fire, about five kilometres east of Tete Jaune Cache, started Tuesday afternoon and has scorched an estimated two square kilometres of brush at the base of a steep slope.Twenty-six firefighters were working on containing the flames Wednesday afternoon and they were to be joined by another 28, Reynolds said.The fire was likely caused by a tree falling into a powerline, but Reynolds said it is classified as being human-caused because it wasn’t sparked by lightning.— With files from CKIZ
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday allowed the Staff Selection Commission to declare the result of a re-examination of SSC Combined Graduate Level (CGL) 2017 held last year. A bench of Justices S A Bobde and S Abdul Nazeer said that injunction granted on August 31, last year on the declaration of result for SSC CGL, 2017, would not continue on a re-examination conducted on March 9, 2018. The top court said that lakhs of unemployed youths have suffered because someone from the organisation was corrupt. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’It also set up a high powered committee comprising Nandan Nilekani, a co-founder of tech giant Infosys, and renowned computer scientist Vijay P Bhatkar to suggest reforms for conducting of competitive examinations fairly by government bodies. The bench said that it will decide the terms of reference for the high powered committee at the later stage and posted the matter for further hearing on April 9. The examination papers of the SSC CGL 2017 were allegedly leaked, leading to huge protests from job seekers for several days. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KAmid the protests, the Staff Selection Commission (SSC) had recommended a CBI probe into the allegations of paper leak. On August 31, last year, the apex court had stayed the declaration of result of the SSC CGL and Combined Higher Secondary Level (CHSL) Examination held in 2017, in which lakhs of students had appeared, saying it seemed that the entire test and the system was “tainted”. At the outset, the bench Monday asked the Centre to consider re-conducting the 2017 examination as several of the papers were alleged to be tainted. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for Centre said that there was no need for re-examination of entire papers as the leak was “extremely localised” and those behind the leaks were identified and action was taken. He said that there was allegation with regard to one paper which was held on February 21, 2018 and the SSC has cancelled that paper and a re-examination was taken on March 9, which was not tainted.
Rabat – Authorities in Catalonia have refuted claims that the United States Counterterrorism Center warned Spain in May about the August terror attacks carried out in Barcelona.Earlier on Thursday, international media outlets reported that Spain received an alert note about the Barcelona terror attacks on May 25. The warning note was sent by the US National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), claimed Spanish daily newspaper, El Peridoco de CatalunyaHowever, Spanish officials refuted the newspaper allegations. Joquim Forn, Catalan regional interior chief has said that Spain was not warned of the Barcelona terror attacks by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) or the NCTC, reported Fox News. Forc added that “such alerts would be announced through state channels.” He continued that the state received other alerts unrelated to the August 17 attacks.On August 17, a white Fiat van drove into the crowd on the Las Ramblas promenade, heavily frequented by tourists in the Catalan metropolis. The attack was claimed by the Islamic State, but this report has not been confirmed.
PARIS — French unions are holding strikes and protests against 120,000 job cuts and other deep changes to France’s huge public sector by President Emmanuel Macron’s government.France’s unions have been eclipsed by the yellow vest movement in recent months, and are now trying to capitalize on its success in getting Macron to backtrack on some of his pro-business policies.Waving union flags of all colours, activists marched in Paris, Marseille and other cities Thursday. Strikes hit some schools, airports and hospitals.In addition to job cuts, medical workers are angry at changes to public hospital financing. Teachers are angry at hiring changes they say will add to workloads.Macron says the changes are necessary to make France’s indebted public service more efficient.The Associated Press
“We reiterate the objections made by several stakeholders in stating that there is no empirical evidence to support the assertion that the death penalty has a deterrent value and that it reduces crime, once imposed the death penalty cannot be reversed as such individuals could to be punished with death for crimes they did not commit, enforcing the death penalty is contrary to Sri Lanka’s international obligations and It is not the way a civilised society deals with crime, especially complicated crime in the nature of trafficking narcotics,” a statement by local civil society said. In this regard they also welcomed the observations of the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) contained in letter dated 13th July 2018 addressed to President Sirisena which echoes the its previous letter to President Sirisena in January 2016 requesting him to take steps to abolish the death penalty.“We urge the President, Prime Minister and the other members of the Cabinet of Ministers to seriously consider these recommendations by the HRCSL, which is statutorily mandated to advise the Government in matters relating to the promotion and protection of human rights,” The statement said. According to media reports the Cabinet of Ministers approved a proposal by President Maithripala Sirisena to take steps towards implementing the death penalty regarding persons who have been sentenced to death for drug offences and “who continue to operate the drug racket from their prison cells”. Local civil society also said that they are also concerned by a proposal reportedly approved by the Cabinet of Ministers at its meeting on 10th July 2018 to draft legislation that would allow the security forces to exercise some police powers for a period of two years to purportedly help the Police in “eradicating the drug menace in the country”.“The military exercising police powers is unacceptable in a context where there is no on going armed conflict. Military involvement in civilian activities has been a problem in post war Sri Lanka and the GoSL since 2010 has continuously promised to reduce the role of the military in civilian life. Whilst progress in this regard has been slow, this proposal if passed into law would be a mistake and a step in the wrong direction. The military’s training does not equip it to carry out policing functions effectively, as was seen when the military was summoned to deal with a protest in Rathupaswala in 2013, forcing the military to engage in policing functions can have disastrous consequences,” the statement said.Local civil society said that whilst the proposed bill is for a specific period of time, Sri Lanka’s experience with other similar legislation has shown that these types of laws eventually become a permanent fixture in the legal system. Local civil society activists and groups in Sri Lanka expressed their deep concerns about the decision of the Cabinet of Ministers to take steps towards implementing the death penalty.The death penalty has not been implemented in Sri Lanka since 1976, though it continues to remain as a punishment for certain categories of offences. Local civil society said that there is no doubt about the need to curb narcotics in Sri Lanka, however the response of the Government needs to be carefully considered so as not to exacerbate existing problems. (Colombo Gazette)
“In a world which has the means to feed us all, this continued suffering is unconscionable,” Secretary-General Kofi Annan said in a message.“Many countries, including those most in need, have not allocated sufficient resources to farming and rural development,” he added, underscoring that the Day’s theme this year is ‘Investing in agriculture for food security.’ “There is a need to reverse this trend, and to channel increased public and private resources towards agricultural activities. Such investment must reach beyond infrastructure and irrigation systems to fund broader human development goals, especially the education of rural women and girls who constitute the backbone of most agrarian economies.” UN World Food Programme (WFP) Executive Director James Morris stressed that new research has shown yet again that the rapid development of the brain, dependent on good nutrition, during the early months and years of a child’s life is crucial and influences learning, behaviour and health throughout the life cycle. “Given that 70 per cent of brain development occurs in the first two years of our lives, malnutrition in early childhood can have a devastating effect. Even before they can walk and talk, these kids are already behind the curve,” he said.Calling on the affluent to do more for the poor, he added: “There’s nothing wrong with wanting the best for your own children – it would be unnatural to wish otherwise. But next time you upgrade your child’s laptop or book those extra tuition sessions, spare a thought for the millions of children whose fingers will never touch a keyboard. They will be lucky if they even learn to read and write or do basic arithmetic.“We can make a difference. There is more than enough food in the world,” he said, noting that Official Development Assistance has been rising steadily for several years and now tops $100 billion. “We can afford to help, but we need to develop a food first policy – poverty cannot be eliminated until hunger and malnutrition are laid to rest. And one way to start would be to prevent hunger from cheating children of hope.” Other UN agencies joined in the appeal for action. “Increasing the volume of public investment in agriculture but also making it more effective are of absolute necessity,” UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Director-General Jacques Diouf said.FAO launched a new global education project to raise awareness about hunger and the right to food among children and young people around the world, a cartoon-style story book entitled ‘The Right to Food: A Window on the World,’ produced together with the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts. The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) stressed that under-nutrition remains a major killer of children under five, contributing to approximately 50 per cent of the more than 10 million child deaths every year. But it also held out a ray of hope, noting that if it is detected early, children can be effectively treated at home and in communities, without being admitted to health facilities, sometimes miles away from their homes. “With the addition of community-based treatment and new technology, much more can now be done to reach undernourished children and to address this important cause of child mortality,” UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman said.
“Lebanon alone cannot handle the increasing number of displaced migrants, as international support and assistance on all levels is much needed,” he told the 67th Assembly’s General Debate, at UN Headquarters in New York.The crisis in Syria has seen over 18,000 people killed and hundreds of thousands of others driven from their homes since a popular uprising against President Bashar al-Assad erupted 18 months ago. A further 2.5 million Syrians urgently need humanitarian aid, according to UN estimates.“The security consequences of the Syrian crisis threaten peace and stability in the Middle East and specifically in Lebanon,” Prime Minister Mikati said. “The international community must exert more efforts in order to assure political consensus among Syrian parties to end violence that is claiming hundreds of innocent lives each day.”The ongoing violence in neighbouring Syria has fuelled sectarian tensions across Lebanon and raised concerns that the country could plunge back into the internecine violence it endured during its 15 year civil war, which ended in 1990.In his statement to the Assembly, the Lebanese leader urged the United Nations to further the right of the Palestinian people to return to their homeland and achieve an independent Palestinian State with Jerusalem as its capital. He also denounced Israel for violations of the accord that ended its month-long war with Hizbollah in 2006, calling on it to end its continued occupation of land in southern Lebanon.“Our region is still striving to cope with the dramatic consequences that followed the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948 and its on-going occupation of Arab territories and its continued violations of International Law and United Nations resolutions,” Prime Minister Mikati said.He added, “Peace along with freedom and justice are the pillars for attaining both security and stability and will pave the way towards the eradication of oppression, extremism, and terrorism in our world. Stability cannot occur without a Palestinian spring through the full implementation of the Palestinians right to self-determination on their land.”The Lebanese Prime Minister is one of scores of world leaders and other high-level officials presenting their views and comments on issues of individual national and international relevance at the Assembly’s General Debate, which ends on 1 October.Also on Thursday, Prime Minister Mikati met with Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. They shared views on the regional implications and spillover effects of the Syrian crisis, and emphasized the need to preserve the security and stability of Lebanon. The Secretary-General expressed his appreciation for the Prime Minister’s efforts in this regard. The two men also stressed the need for greater international support to help Lebanon provide the necessary humanitarian assistance to the growing numbers of refugees from Syria. In addition, the UN chief welcomed the commitment of all Lebanese political parties to national unity and dialogue, and commended the pursuit of the so-called National Dialogue under the leadership of President Michel Sleiman. He underscored the need for further efforts in this regard and the importance of continued international support to the Government and the Lebanese Armed Forces.Lebanese political leaders resumed the National Dialogue in June, following its suspension since November 2010, in light of sectarian violence in Lebanon linked to the conflict in Syria.
Rakiata and her family are unable to prove their nationality: “It has been so difficult. It just feels as if we do not exist.” Photo: UNHCR/Hélène Caux While issues of statelessness remain politically contentious in some countries, in others ending it can be as simple as changing a few words in a country’s citizenship law, the press release notes. Over the past decade, 4 million stateless people have been able to acquire a national or have their nationality confirmed as a result of legislative and policy changes. Nevertheless, there are currently more than 10 million people around the world who are believed to be stateless. Nana, 79, was stateless for decades after moving to what is now Côte d’Ivoire in the 1940s but recently acquired a consular card from Burkina Faso. She holds a photo of her late husband. Photo: UNHCR/Hélène Caux Last November, UNHCR launched its global #IBelong campaign with the hope of ending the problem of statelessness within a decade. The UN agency has noted that new risks of statelessness have, in fact, emerged as a result of growing numbers of major conflicts worldwide. The wars in the Central African Republic and Syria, for example, have forced millions of people into internal displacement or into becoming refugees. Adama, 32, says he has been arrested, detained and even beaten because he lacks papers proving his nationality. Photo: UNHCR/Hélène Caux “Having a nationality is something most people take for granted – but to those who do not have one, or who cannot prove it, this lack often sentences them to a life of discrimination, frustration and despair,” Mr. Guterres concluded. Mohamed, 17, is afraid to leave his village because he fears being arrested or fined. Photo: UNHCR/Hélène Caux In addition, tens of thousands of children have been born in exile, and UNHCR is working closely with the governments and partners in countries receiving refugees on prioritizing birth registration for those children. Delegates representing fifteen West African nations have pledged to step up efforts towards eliminating statelessness in a move aimed at resolving the situation of hundreds of thousands of stateless people across the region, the United Nations refugee agency reported today. The news comes on the heels of a UN-backed high-level meeting held this week in Côte d’Ivoire which saw the 15 countries belonging to the Economic Community of West African States, or ECOWAS, adopt a declaration on Wednesday aimed at “the prevention, reduction and elimination of statelessness.” According to a UNHCR press release, the declaration contains 25 commitments and highlights the need for ECOWAS states to gather “concrete information on the causes of statelessness” and the number of stateless people in the region. Estimates suggest that some 750,000 people are currently stateless or at risk of statelessness across West Africa, including 700,000 in Côte d’Ivoire alone. In addition, the declaration stresses that every child should acquire a nationality at birth and that all foundlings be considered nationals of the state in which they are found. Moreover, it also focuses on the need to ensure that men and women have equal rights to acquire, change and retain their nationality and pass on nationality to their children. Pascal, 72, is stateless in Côte d’Ivoire. “I may be a great farmer of coffee, cocoa and rice, but not having a nationality has confined me to my village and my fields.” Photo: UNHCR/Hélène Caux Delivering his closing remarks to the conference, UNHCR head António Guterres welcomed West Africa’s commitment to ending statelessness – a scourge which the UN agency has also committed to resolving. “Ultimately, the concept of ‘belonging’ goes beyond legal texts and identity documents, and also requires political will to build tolerance and acceptance, and the social and human space for all members of society to be recognized, to contribute and to belong,” Mr. Guterres declared.
(Video: Neil Harper/YouTube) 15-year-old Louise Murray from St Mary’s College in Naas, Co Kildare, looking at a super conductor reacting to magnetic force at the Science Gallery in Trinity College Dublin today. (Photo: Julien Behal/PA Wire)HERE ARE THE things you need to know as we round off the day in three easy steps.THINGS WE LEARNED#SHOOTING: A second man has been arrested in connection with the drive-by shooting of a 16-year-old boy in Crumlin in Dublin last night.#RECALL: Toyota has announced a recall of over 36,000 cars in Ireland due to a defect in the electric windows.#PUPPIES: The DSPCA has said that the 50 puppies rescued yesterday afternoon will be looking for new homes shortly – but not until the Garda investigation into what happened has concluded.#CYCLING: The US Anti-Doping Agency has said it has gathered “overwhelming” evidence that Lance Armstrong was involved in “the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping program that sport has ever seen”.#SPENDING: Households in Ireland now spend more money on housing than on food for the first time ever, according to new figures from the CSO.#PUSSY RIOT: A Russian appeals court has released one member of Pussy Riot but ordered that two other members remain in jail.#MOO: Iran is to lift the ban on Irish beef which has been in place since March 1996.THINGS WE LOVEDUS website Gawker has published some hard-hitting pieces about questionable practices at Mitt Romney’s former company, Bain Capital – so needless to say, they were pretty surprised to receive an email from Bain looking to invest in Gawker. They spoke to the person who sent the email who told them: “I’ve been working here for like a week now… This is awkward”. Indeed.A new show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC shows photographs which have been doctored and faked to trick people into believing they’re real.THINGS WE SHAREDRuby Wax’s TED talk about mental illness entitled “What’s so funny about mental illness” was posted this afternoon on the TED site. Well worth a watch if you have 9 minutes to spare.Here’s 26 Things The Internet Wants to Know About Emos.If you’ve been looking for a YouTube video about futility, endeavour, and schadenfreude – and really, who isn’t? – then we’ve got just the job. Here’s 65 seconds of a dog trying to pull a root out of the ground. Nice try, boy.
THE RECENT HIGHLIGHTING by media outlets of the apparent exploitation of migrant workers in Qatar, as that country develops its infrastructure in advance of the soccer World Cup in 2022, again places the spotlight on mega-sporting events and their benefits and costs for a host country and the world at large.The term “mega-event” is not precisely defined, but sporting mega-events are recognised as events which capture world attention and bring large scale benefits to a country or city. This usually materialises through saturation media coverage from across the world, place marketing, national re-positioning, urban regeneration and improved infrastructure, economic development, increased sport participation and a general boost to the people of a city or country. This general boost, often labelled civic boosterism or psychic income, is perhaps the key legacy of mega-events.It is highly doubtful that the investment of €10 billion or more in events that usually last for a month or less, can be justified only in terms of measurable economic impact, and indeed it is unlikely that a study of such benefits would be ever be conducted, so great would the scale of research required, and period of analysis be.The ‘feel good’ factorInstead, a key (albeit intangible) benefit is that ‘feel good’ factor of happiness, joy, identity and people viewing their community and country in a positive light. Think Ireland around the time of Italia ‘90 or to a lesser extent Katie Taylor’s gold medal last year, or London throughout the Olympics in 2012. Anecdotal reports of strangers discussing Mo Farrah’s prospects on the morning tube commute, daily street parties, and huge crowds lining the streets of provincial towns to welcome home successful athletes were commonplace during last summer’s Olympics.London 2012 recruited 70,000 volunteers for the games, many with no volunteering experience, and selected candidates from a range of backgrounds in order to try best reflect London’s ethnic diversity. This was a successful programme, with the volunteers branded as ‘Games Makers’, taking their positive experiences back to their local communities. Opening ceremonies can serve as a display of power, or in the case of London 2012’s showstopper from filmmaker Danny Boyle, incorporate a large cultural-artistic element, that is an interpretation of a host country’s culture.During times of recession, increased urbanisation and polarisation of communities, this ‘feel good’ factor is important, not least to governments and individual politicians. A mayor of London will likely never again receive the amount of soft focus media coverage that Boris Johnson banked in the lead up to and during the 2012 London Olympics.Potential negatives to mega-eventsHowever, there are also many potential negatives to mega-events. Taxpayers in Montreal, Canada, were still paying for the overspend on the 1976 Olympic Games 30 years later. There is often vast wastage of public monies on non-essential vanity projects, employment created is short term, and Olympic Games can indirectly cause an increase in the cost of living for local residents as the area moves up-market.The Olympics in Sydney 2000 were generally perceived positively, in acting as an image-maker for Sydney as a modern ‘world city’ rather than a colonial outpost, helping to heal cultural differences, and showcasing Australia as a beautiful, multi-cultural country with a pristine environment. However, less highlighted were the widespread dilution of planning laws in the area of Sydney where the games were held. Also, local media was quietly subverted. With sport occupying an important role in Australian nationalism, in the absence of a defining national war, any legitimate criticism of the games was labelled as un-Australian.Greece spent €13 billion to bring the Olympics back to their ancient home in 2004, but the legacy of the Athens games is best summed up by the many abandoned derelict venues such as swimming pools, beach volleyball stadiums and canoe slalom courses. The Olympics were not the main cause of the Greek economic collapse, but their legacy serve as a visual symbol of the over-borrowing and overspending which has crippled the country.While tourism to a country or city may benefit in the long term from the exposure an event generates, there is evidence that during a mega-event the number of tourists actually drops as potential visitors are put off by suggestions of rip-off flight and hotel prices, and too many… tourists!‘Global political players’A further issue around mega-events is that they are often accused of attracting increased protitution, trafficking, and illegal drug use. The Texas Attorney General, Greg Abbott, recently described the Super Bowl as “the single largest human trafficking incident in the US”.While claims have been made about huge movement of sex workers into countries such as Germany and South Africa for the World Cups of 2006 and 2010, it is very difficult to quantify these numbers. The sheer scale of mega-events, the volume of tourists and the demands they place on policing for example, often mean that traffickers and their victims are more difficult to identify.For future mega-event hosts however, the game has moved on considerably. Countries such as Brazil, which is hosting both the 2014 Football World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games; Russia which is hosting the 2018 Football World Cup; and Qatar which is hosting the 2022 Football World Cup, are all seeking to become bigger global political and economic powers and are using mega-events to help achieve this aim.This often suits organisations such as FIFA and the International Olympic Committee, in that they now see themselves as far more than mere sporting bodies and instead, global political players, with their presidents acting as something akin to the head of state of a large country.This is, ironically, one of the reasons England was unsuccessful with its bid for the 2018 World Cup. England had the infrastructure, football history and fan base to ensure a successful and relatively cost-effective tournament, but this did not fit with the FIFA vision of spreading the message of the so called ‘beautiful game’ around to more diverse parts of the world (often to countries which cannot afford it). The highlighting by sections of the English media of FIFA members’ corrupt practices was also probably not helpful.Qatar is approximately the size of Cork and Kerry combined, and has a population of under 2 million, approximately the same as Northern Ireland. Less than one quarter of the population are citizens, but Qatar has the highest GDP per capita in the world.Qatar’s successful bid to host the World Cup has proven highly contentious since it was successful in 2010. Apart from matters such as Qatar’s demographics, lack of stadiums and 50° Celsius heat in June, when the World Cup is traditionally held, an altogether darker issue is that of Qatar’s apparent treatment of migrants from countries such as Nepal, India and Pakistan who are building the infrastructure. FIFA have said they will investigate, but these practices have been clearly evident in Qatar and neighbouring Middle Eastern countries for many years.Mega-events cost a lot of money to stage. London 2012 is estimated to have cost around £9 billion, from an original estimate of £2.4 billion. For that they got an iconic event, huge media exposure, a redeveloped East End of London, sporting memories that will endure, and they will hope, increased volunteerism and sport participation.A cynic might suggest, of course, that with Ireland’s bank guarantee – having cost around €64 billion –we could have hosted seven Olympic Games.Feargus Dunne is a lecturer in tourism and events management at Institute of Technology, Tralee. He has worked with numerous Irish festivals and events in an advisory capacity. Follow him on Twitter @feargusd or LinkedIn. Read: Football bosses told to worry about Qatar workers – and not just players
Disease and infections magazine outbreaknewstoday.com reported that the number of cases typically increases in the late summer and fall.How to lower risk of shigella infectionThe LGBT Foundation says you can lower your risk of infection by washing your hands, bum and genitals after sex.You could also use dental dams, condoms, and fisting gloves to protect you when having oral sex, fisting, and fingering.It is also recommended that you change condoms between partners, and between anal and oral sex, whether they’re on a penis, hands, or sex toys.Hygiene as prevention: Wash often and don’t re-use condoms. Photo: Mark JohnsonShigella treatmentShigella is treated with a course of antibiotics, the Foundation says. However, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned last month of an increasing number of antibiotic-resistant shigella infections.If you think you have shigella, go to a sexual health (GUM) clinic or your GP and explain your symptoms. You may also want to say that you think you may have picked up an infection from sex.See also:Warning to not ‘wash and re-use condoms’ issued eTN Chatroom for Readers (join us) Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… Got a news tip? Want to share your story? Email us . © Wernerimages | DreamstimeSTI warning to gay men Icons in LGBTI history and today share their pivotal stories in 29 portraitsGay men over 45 far more likely to be single – and these are the reasons whyHawaii Tourism follows LGBT Hawaii suggestion, releases study on Taiwan and JapanRead the full article on Gaystarnews: :https://www.gaystarnews.com/article/warning-over-rise-in-shigella-sti-cases-among-gay-men/ GAYSTARNEWS- The LGBT Foundation said there has been a recent rise in cases of shigella among men who have sex with men.Shigellosis, or shigella, is an intestinal infection caused when bacteria found in poo gets into your mouth.Spelling it out: Shigella is transferred through faeces. Photo: Mark JohnsonLast month, health officials in San Diego issued an advisory over the sexual transmitted infection. It said that gay and bisexual men, homeless individuals, and people with compromised immune systems could be at an increased risk for the intestinal disease.In 2017, San Diego recorded the highest number of cases in 20 years, including a disproportional increase in the gay and bisexual community and among the homeless population.How do you get it?Shigella can be caught from rimming, oral sex, or putting your fingers in your mouth after handling used condoms, douches or sex toys, the LGBT Foundation says.Signs of infection include having an upset stomach, fever, stomach ache, and diarrhoea which might have blood in it.These symptoms can last for around a week. Shigella is closely related to the E.coli bacteria.
Related posts:Only 35 percent of Costa Rican corporations will pay taxes on time Human rights court orders Costa Rica to legalize in vitro fertilization Costa Rica’s Supreme Court powers down 3 electronic billboards along heavily transited roads Costa Rica Supreme Court strikes down ban on clergy holding public office – except Catholics The Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court, or Sala IV, on Friday confirmed that the association agreement between Central America and the European Union (EU) does not violate any articles of Costa Rica’s Constitution.Lawmakers sent the agreement to the Sala IV for consultation before after it was approved in a first round of debate by the Legislative Assembly on May 21. Legislators can now can proceed with discussion and approval in a second and final round of voting.The agreement will enter into force on Aug. 1 between countries who have completed all procedures no later than July 15. It has already been approved by the governments of Nicaragua, Honduras, Panama and Guatemala.El Salvador and Costa Rica are the two remaining countries in the region that must complete approval.The EU bloc, composed of 27 countries, is the second largest trading partner for Costa Rica after the United States. Exports to Europe exceeded $2 billion in 2012, which represented some 18 percent of the country’s total exports.The most demanded products by European consumers are agricultural goods – mostly bananas, pineapples, coffee, rice, flowers and yuca – followed by shrimp, tuna and textiles. Facebook Comments
Source = e-Travel Blackboard: W.X This year’s Discover South America trade show, supported by LAN Airlines, was the first time many of its representatives had travelled down under, and so many were pleasantly surprise by the tremendous welcome.Many of the representatives were leaving Chile’s main airport of Santiago as the earthquake hit off the coast of the Maule region, and as such were able to give first hand reports of the situation in the area.Despite the catastrophe the local travel industry supported the representatives by coming in droves in both Melbourne and Sydney to tradeshows held late last week.“We were overwhelmed by the number of interested agents,” said Ana Periera, LAN Airlines (World Aviation) Account Manager. “We had over 170 agents show up in Melbourne, and in Sydney we had to raise maximum amount of registered agents from 200 to 300.”“Many agents there were interested in what was happening over in Chile,” adds Tony Harrington, LAN spokesperson. “We are able to tell them that the recovery is well underway.”Six different tour operators and suppliers travelled with the roadshow this year, including Ecuador-based Metropolitan Touring who specialise in tours of Ecuador, Peru, Argentia and Chile as well as specialist tours of the Galapagos.“One of the key messages for me this year is to encourage awareness of our Galapagos cruises,” said Francisco Dousdebes, Metropolitan Touring Expedition Trainer. “We would really like people to be aware that our tours book out quickly due to a cap on how many travellers are allowed into the Galapagos each year… If people really want to get on our tours they should book early.”Other tour operators include CTS Turismo, a tour operator which focuses on Chile, and Expedition Cruises, who travel through regions including Patagonia and Cape Horn. Hotels who also participated this year include the Sofitel, Alto Atacama and the eco lodge Hangaroa on Easter Island. <a href=”http://www.etbtravelnews.global/click/2340d/” target=”_blank”><img src=”http://adsvr.travelads.biz/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=10&cb=INSERT_RANDOM_NUMBER_HERE&n=a5c63036″ border=”0″ alt=””></a>
TEMPE, Ariz. – At his introductory news conference, nearly a year ago to the day, linebacker Chandler Jones called himself a New England Cardinal.It was an honest mistake — one he quickly corrected — considering it had been less than 24 hours since he switched teams.Jones made no such mistake on Friday, speaking to reporters this time after signing a long-term contract with the Arizona Cardinals, thus ending any and all speculation about his future. FILE – In this Jan. 1, 2017, file photo, Arizona Cardinals linebacker Chandler Jones smiles in the fourth quarter of an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams, in Los Angeles. The Cardinals have placed a non-exclusive franchise tag on outside linebacker Chandler Jones after failing to reach a long-term deal with the player. The “non-exclusive” tag allows the Cardinals to continue negotiating with Jones through July 15. (AP Photo/John Cordes, FIle) Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires With Jones and fellow outside linebacker Markus Golden, the Cardinals led the NFL with 48 sacks, a distinction the franchise had accomplished just one time prior in 1983.“I mean the sky’s the limit for our pass rush, and I feel like last year we just scratched the surface,” Jones said, adding about Golden, who paced the team with a career-best 12.5 sacks, “Markus is a tremendous player and he’s young (25). He’s still learning, and I’m learning from him, honestly. We learn from each other. Even though we have different body types, there’s a lot of moves or different techniques to get by offensive tackles that really help the both of us.”Overall, Jones called his 2016 numbers “decent.” Aside from rushing the quarterback, he totaled 57 tackles, including 15 for loss, four forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries while starting all 16 games.Jones was named a Pro Bowl alternate.“You can never say you had a perfect season, so there’s always room for improvement, for sure,” he said.That improvement, Jones said, will come just based on how much more comfortable he feels in the Cardinals defense. Jones was asked to play much of his time standing up rather than having his hand in the dirt. “I’m excited,” he said. “I mean, every interview that I’ve had since I’ve been here everyone has asked me, ‘How long are you going to be here? Are you going to be a free agent? Are you going to test the market?’ It’s all over. Today has been a great day.”Of course, it was never a matter of if Jones would wear a Cardinals uniform again, but for how long and, more importantly, for how much.The Cardinals placed the franchise tag on Jones on Feb. 27, which coincidently was Jones’ 27th birthday.Nine days later, the two sides had reached agreement on a five-year contract worth a reported $82.5 million with $53 million in guaranteed money.Friday, Jones put pen to paper on the contract, one that locks him up through 2021.“I want to thank Mike Bidwill, our team’s president and owner; Steve Keim, the GM; and (head coach) Bruce Arians,” he said. “Those guys, they do a great job of taking care of business and they treated me so well and I’m so excited, for sure.”Acquired last year after four seasons in New England, Jones proved to be the pass-rush specialist the Cardinals were missing in 2015. He finished with 11 sacks, 14 quarterback pressures and 22 quarterback hits. Your browser does not support the audio element. Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling “Just being more consistent,” he said. “There’s a few games where I feel like my pass rush could’ve been better. I’m not up here to make excuses, but just being more consistent, for sure, throughout the year.”Jones also sees a leadership role in his future with the Cardinals, especially given the loss of defensive lineman Calais Campbell.“When I was coming in here, I didn’t want to be the new guy coming in and calling guys around. You got great leaders like Calais and Patrick Peterson and Tyrann (Mathieu). Those guys are great leaders and they do a great job. But, now that I have a year under my belt and I kind of got those guys’ respect and trust now, I feel like I can be more verbal.“Like I said, the sky’s the limit for this team.”Follow Craig Grialou on Twitter Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Comments Share LISTEN: Chandler Jones, Cardinals DL/LB
October 20, 2010The exhibition BRIDGES: SPANNING THE IDEAS OF PAOLO SOLERI, opened last Friday, October 8. 2010, with a VIP reception. Soler’s bridge designs, spanning a period from 1948 to the present, are on display in the Virginia Ullman Gallery at SMoCA.The exhibition highlights a single important aspect of Soleri’s career as a means to understand his vision for creating livable, sustainable communities. The exhibition opened to the public on October 9. and will be on display until January 23. 2011. SMOCA Director Tim Rodgers welcomes VIP guests at Friday nights opening. This fall Soleri will complete his first built bridge at the Scottsdale Waterfront, commissioned by Scottsdale Public Art. The official bridge dedication will be on December 11, 2010, 11am – 2pm at the Scottsdale Waterfront. In conjunction with the bridge opening, Scottsdale Public Art offers ‘behind the scene’ VIP tours, a tour to Arcosanti on Friday, December 10. from 9am to 7pm, and tours to Cosanti on Saturday, December 11. and Sunday, December 12. 2010. The VIP tour to Arcosanti promises: An intimate guided tour of Arcosanti with behind the scenes access into the Soleri Archives which contains work by the renowned Italian architect that is not on display for the public. Following the Arcosanti visit, you will return to Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art [SMoCA] to see the exhibition, led by the show’s curator. The tour ends on the scenic Downtown Waterfront at a private review reciption for the new Soleri Bridge and Plaza from 5 – 7pm. For more information and tickets get in touch with Scottsdale Public Arts at 480 994-2787, ext.2 or scottsdalepublicart.org.
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