Shania Twain Kate Upton to guest on RuPauls Drag Race

first_imgAdvertisement Stephen Colbert, Andy Cohen and Cheyenne Jackson will make special appearances on the show in which 14 drag queens compete for the title of “America’s Next Drag Superstar” and a grand prize of $100,000.“RuPaul’s Drag Race” returns at 8 p.m. EDT Thursday, March 22. Each 90-minute episode will be followed by the post-show “RuPaul’s Drag Race: Untucked.” Advertisement Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Twitter LOS ANGELES (AP) — The 10th season of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” is set to include high-octane visitors.VH1 said Thursday that Shania Twain, Kate Upton, Christina Aguilera and Lena Dunham will serve as guest judges.Among the other guest judges: Audra McDonald, Courtney Love, Kumail Nanjiani, Emily V. Gordon, Billy Eichner, Halsey, Abbi Jacobson, Ilana Glazer, Andrew Rannells and Padma Lakshmi. Facebook Login/Register With:last_img read more

Travelling lawyers bringing legal services to Northeast BC

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — Two Vancouver-based lawyers will be hitting the road in a 24-foot RV to bring legal services to residents in Northern BC over the next few weeks.Two of the three founders of Reach Legal, which was launched last month, will be clocking more than 2,500 kilometres over 10 days this month to bring much-needed legal services to residents of underserved communities. Reach Legal operates on a web-based platform to offer individuals and businesses across the province convenience, flexibility, and options when choosing a new lawyer.“We believe that all BC residents should have access to specialized legal services, regardless of the size or location of their community,” said Erin Brandt, one of the lawyers behind Reach Legal, and the official route planner for the RV trip. Lawyers Erin Brandt, left, and Paula Krawus are travelling Northern B.C. in The Law Bus. Supplied photo.The “Law Bus” journey will visit communities from Williams Lake to Fort Nelson, including: Quesnel, Mackenzie, Tumbler Ridge, Dawson Creek, Fort St. John and Chetwynd.“In smaller communities it can be a real challenge for residents to find expert legal representation. In some cases, it’s practically impossible,” said Simon Kent, another of Reach Legal’s founders.Kent cites examples of cases where a community may not have two lawyers available for a divorce case, leaving one spouse without representation. Reach Legal hopes to fill this gap with its innovative plan to offer legal services via video conferencing and other mobile options. The legal team said it will travel as needed for court appearances, and is also planning to provide support for their fellow lawyers already practising across B.C.“Lawyers in smaller communities are often asked to take on complex cases that require specialized knowledge outside their primary practice area, simply because there are no other local options,” said Brandt. “We hope to act as a bridge for these lawyers, connecting them with legal professionals who can consult on specific cases and specialized areas of law. The idea is to build a stronger community of legal professionals in these regions, by supporting what is already working.” The Reach Legal RV’s itinerary is as follows: Tuesday, May 8: QuesnelWednesday, May 9: MackenzieThursday, May 10: Tumbler RidgeThursday, May 10: Dawson CreekFriday, May 11: Fort St. JohnSunday, May 13 – Tuesday, May 15: Fort NelsonTuesday, May 15  Thursday, May 17: Fort St. JohnThursday, May 17: Chetwynd (tentative)last_img read more

Brazil issues 5 arrest warrants in deadly mine dam collapse

RIO DE JANEIRO — Brazilian authorities have issued arrest warrants for five people in connection with a dam collapse that killed at least 65 people as it plastered part of a city with reddish-brown mud and mining waste.Police issued the orders on Tuesday in Sao Paulo and in the state of Minas Gerais, where the collapse happened. They came as rescue crews worked for the fifth day to search for survivors or bodies.Local media reported the warrants were for employees of Vale, the mining company that owned and operated the waste dam that collapsed.In a statement, Vale said it was working with authorities. However, a spokeswoman couldn’t immediately confirm that those being sought worked for the company.An Associated Press photographer saw police bringing back one of the alleged suspects in Sao Paulo.The Associated Press read more

If Trump triggers a withdrawal from NAFTA we walk Mexico

WASHINGTON — If Donald Trump attempts the proverbial gun-to-the-temple negotiating strategy on NAFTA, how should America’s neighbours respond: Keep sitting there, or walk away from the bargaining table?It’s a question the other North American countries are grappling with.That’s because the U.S. president is increasingly explicit in suggesting he might pull the trigger on the formal NAFTA withdrawal process to frighten the other countries into making concessions during negotiations.Trump made some of his clearest remarks yet Wednesday on the idea.He suggested he might start the withdrawal process not necessarily to end NAFTA, but to strengthen his negotiating leverage.“We’re working right now on NAFTA, the horrible, terrible NAFTA,” Trump told an audience in Missouri.“We’ve got to change this deal. And hopefully we can renegotiate it, but if we can’t, we’ll terminate it and we’ll start all over again with a real deal.”That remark about terminating and starting over was an apparent reference to Article 2205. That’s the clause in NAFTA where one country can serve notice of its intent to withdraw, after a minimum six-month waiting period.Such a move wouldn’t necessarily mean the end of NAFTA. At the end of the six-month period, the president could still choose to remain in the agreement. Furthermore, even if he did choose to withdraw, what would likely follow are complex legal battles where lawmakers and industry would argue that the agreement remains largely intact, unless the U.S. Congress passes a law rescinding it.Still, a withdrawal notice would present the other countries with a mammoth dilemma — about whether to stay or go.Mexico has indicated it would leave. Canada hasn’t been that explicit.The southernmost partner drew its line in the sand Wednesday. A high-level Mexican cabinet delegation left for meetings in Washington, and made its position clear when asked whether it would keep negotiating under the threat of withdrawal under Article 2205.“No,” said Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray, as quoted in several Spanish-language media reports.“We do not believe it would be the correct path or a viable path, describing the agreement as terminated right as we’re in the process of renegotiation.”He made those remarks after a meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.The Canadians aren’t going that far.The Canadian government says it’s focused on the negotiations and looks forward to the next round, which starts Friday in Mexico City.Its response Wednesday, in a statement from Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland’s spokesman Adam Austen was: “As we stated at the conclusion of the first round of talks, we are committed to upgrading NAFTA and establishing 21st century standards supporting middle class jobs to the benefit of Canada, the United States, and Mexico.” read more

Greater Montreal home sales grow 16 per cent to set new record

MONTREAL — Summer vacations haven’t dampened demand in Greater Montreal’s real estate market which saw sales grow by 16 per cent to a new sales record in July.  The Quebec Professional Association of Real Estate Brokers says residential sales hit 3,698 for a 53rd consecutive monthly increase.Sales of single-family homes and condominiums climbed 16 per cent to 2,012 and 1,313 respectively. Plexes with two to five dwellings increased 23 per cent to 368.All six main areas of the Montreal Census Metropolitan Area saw significantly higher sales with Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu growing by 75 per cent and Laval increasing 48 per cent.The median price of single-family homes increased six per cent to $357,000 with prices on the island of Montreal up 11 per cent to $518,750. Condominiums were up five per cent to $278,600 and plexes gained 10 per cent to $583,000.The number of active listings decreased 20 per cent to nearly 17,000 as the number of new listings were stable.The Canadian Press read more

Annan welcomes initial agreement between Sudan rebels to end Darfur conflict

In a statement issued by his spokesman in New York, Mr. Annan welcomed the signing – by the Government of Sudan, the Justice and Equality Movement and the Sudan Liberation Movement – in Abuja, Nigeria, of a Declaration of Principles for the Resolution of the Conflict in Darfur.“The Declaration signals the parties’ intention to bring to an end the conflict in Darfur,” the statement said, adding: “The Secretary-General congratulates African Union (AU) mediator Salim Ahmed Salim and the United Nations team which participated in the negotiations on the successful conclusion of this stage.”“He encourages the parties to move forward decisively and promptly when they restart talks on 24 August and to conclude a lasting political settlement to bring an end to the enormous suffering of the people of Darfur,” the statement said.Meanwhile, the Secretary-General will travel to the Sudanese capital Khartoum over the weekend, following the G8 Summit in Gleneagles, Scotland. In Khartoum, he will attend the inauguration of the Government of National Unity, where he is expected to deliver remarks.In other news, the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) reports that a high level of non-political violence, mostly banditry and theft, is continuing to take place in the three states of Darfur. Inter-tribal fighting over livestock is also a major cause of insecurity and death in the province.Also, the second phase of the relocation of internally displaced persons (IDPs) from the Abou Shouk camp in North Darfur to Al-Salam began on Monday. Some 23,000 people are to be moved in two phases by 18 July.Fighting in Darfur flared in early 2003 after rebels took up arms, partly in protest over the distribution of resources. Militias such as the Janjaweed joined in the battle against them, terrorizing the population. The UN says some 180,000 people have died as a result of the conflict, while another 1.8 million have been forced from their homes, including about 200,000 who fled across the border to neighbouring Chad. read more

Amazon apologizes to India for selling doormats with national flag

Amazon apologizes to India for selling doormats with national flag TORONTO – Amazon has apologized to India’s foreign minister for selling doormats depicting the Indian flag on the online shopping giant’s Canadian website.The head of the retailer in India sent the apology to External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday, according to a tweet by a ministry spokesperson.The statement, which was posted on Twitter under the verified account of spokesperson Vikas Swarup, said Amazon is committed to respecting the laws and customs in India.In India, insulting the national flag is punishable with fines and imprisonment.Amit Agarwal, vice-president and country manager of Amazon India, said in a statement the company “regrets” the sale of the offending items, noting that they were offered by a third-party seller in Canada.“At no time did we intend or mean to offend Indian sentiments,” Agarwal said.Minister Swaraj had lashed out on Tuesday at Amazon on Twitter, threatening to deny Indian visas to any Amazon employees if the company did not apologize and “withdraw all products insulting our national flag immediately.”“If this is not done forthwith, we will not grant an Indian visa to any Amazon official. We will also rescind the visas issued earlier,” Swaraj tweeted.The Canadian third-party seller — which also sells mats with other national flags, including the U.S., U.K. and Canada — removed the Indian-themed product, following Swaraj’s Twitter threat.Swaraj had also ordered the embassy in Canada to take up the matter with Amazon “at the highest level.”Arun Kumar Sahu, acting High Commissioner of India to Canada, said the situation has now been resolved.When asked if the embassy will pursue any further action, Sahu said from Ottawa there wouldn’t be anything to follow. “At least I don’t have any instructions on this,” he added.The doormats had outraged many people among the Indian diaspora in Canada, who posted pictures of them on social media and urged the foreign minister to formally object.Last year, there were protests after the online marketplace offered doormats depicting Hindu gods.A spokesperson for Amazon Canada declined to provide any additional comment.— With files from The Associated PressFollow @LindaNguyenTO on Twitter. India’s foreign minister Sushma Swaraj is shown in this May 8, 2010 file photo. Amazon has apologized to India’s foreign minister for selling doormats depicting the Indian flag on the online shopping giant’s Canadian website. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP Photo/Mahesh Kumar A by Linda Nguyen, The Associated Press Posted Jan 12, 2017 11:08 am MDT Last Updated Jan 13, 2017 at 7:20 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email read more

Tax clearance mess grows by the day

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram The Finance Ministry is unable to provide a solution to the major problem regarding the freeze in the issuing of tax clearance certificates to property owners.The problem arose after the fiasco over the new single property ownership tax (ENFIA), which was unveiled last week and caused an uproar due to erroneous data having been used in the calculations. The ministry has rolled back the first ENFIA instalment payment date to the end of September, in hopes of correcting most of the errors by then. However, this means that tax clearance certificates cannot be issued until the errors are corrected and the tax paid. Additionally, any income tax rebates will be withheld and cleared against the ENFIA instalments.And it is not just businesses and self-employed professionals that are feeling the heat, as the vicious cycle of clearances is also affecting the farmers who will be entitled to compensation for losses incurred as a result of the Russian food ban.In a statement the ministry essentially acknowledged the problem that has arisen for millions of taxpayers and the mess regarding tax clearance certificates. In vague terms it said it will issue an order soon that will clear the rebates against ascertained tax dues and solve the problem.“Tax clearance certificates, valid for two months, can be obtained online in cases where no taxes are owed. In other cases, certificates valid for one month are issued by any public tax office and may also be obtained from the ministry’s Taxpayers’ Service Bureau (GEF). As of September, certificates valid for one month will also be issued online for most cases. As regards the clearance of rebates against ENFIA installments, there will be a decision settling the issue within the next few days,” the Finance Ministry statement said.It is apparent, however, that as taxpayers have new dues to pay virtually every month in the form of income tax, VAT or ENFIA, clearance certificates valid for two months may only be issued online in very few cases.The Finance Ministry will upload its revised ENFIA notifications on September 15, when it will also make an application available to taxpayers who wish to correct erroneous data.Source: ekathimerini.last_img read more

Perception lenvironnement sonore influencerait le goût des aliments

first_imgPerception : l’environnement sonore influencerait le goût des alimentsGrande-Bretagne – Le niveau de l’environnement sonore affecterait à la fois l’intensité des saveurs et la perception de croustillant des aliments, selon une équipe de chercheurs. Dans un repas Blindfolded, les convives ont témoigné de la fadeur (manque de sucre ou de sel), de la modification du croustillant et de l’ensemble des saveurs des aliments alors qu’ils se trouvaient dans un environnement bruyant. Ainsi, les sons forts diminueraient les sensations sucrées ou salées tout en augmentant la sensation de croustillant.Cela pourrait être une explication au fait que la nourriture proposée lors des trajets en avion soit considérée comme insipide.”De l’opinion générale, la nourriture servie dans les avions n’est pas fantastique” dit Andy Woods, un chercheur de l’université de Manchester. “Je suis sûr que les compagnies aériennes font de leur mieux, c’est la raison pour laquelle nous nous sommes demandés si d’autres facteurs pouvaient expliquer pourquoi la nourriture ne paraissait pas si bonne que ça. Une de nos hypothèses était que peut-être l’environnement sonore avait un impact”, a-t-il confié à la BBC.”La Nasa donne aux spationautes des aliments au goût extrêmement prononcé parce que, pour différentes raisons, ils ne perçoivent pas les saveurs aussi fortement qu’ils le devraient. Il en va peut-être de même avec le bruit environnant” précise-t-il. “Si le bruit environnant est élevé, cela peut amener à diriger son attention vers lui et à l’écarter de la nourriture” explique Andy Woods.À lire aussiPourquoi le café donne-t-il envie de faire caca ?Il indique cependant qu’aucune recherche similaire n’avait été effectuée précédemment et que pour le moment, son équipe s’attache à vérifier le bien-fondé de cette découverte.L’étude qui a été menée jusque là concernait un petit groupe de 48 participants seulement. Ils étaient amenés à goûter des aliments tels que des gâteaux ou des biscuits apéritifs comme des chips alors qu’ils étaient soit dans un silence total, soit en présence de bruits via des écouteurs. Il ressort de cette étude qu’avec les bruits, les aliments étaient classés moins sucrés et salés qu’en l’absence de son. En revanche, ils étaient considérés comme plus croustillants.Une autre hypothèse émise par le groupe de recherche est que la satisfaction générale que procurent les aliments dépendrait du degré d’appréciation de ce qu’entend la personne. Une recherche plus poussée devrait amener des éléments de réponse.Le 24 octobre 2010 à 17:08 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Homelessness in San Diego

first_img Categories: Local San Diego News Tags: Homelessness FacebookTwitter January 9, 2018 KUSI Newsroom, Homelessness in San Diego KUSI Newsroom 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsAlthough many steps have been taken to try and improve the homeless issue in San Diego, it continues to be a topic of concern.KUSI was joined by founder of Homelessness News San Diego, Michael McConnell, with more on the problem the city is facing. Posted: January 9, 2018last_img read more

Behind the ALM Acquisition and Whats Next for the Legal Information Company

first_imgIn June, private equity investment firm Wasserstein & Co. announced it was acquiring ALM Media from Apax Partners. It would be the second time Wasserstein has owned the company, which it had built through a series of acquisitions.Apax put ALM on the block in April and the deal closed July 31. Terms were not released at the time and ALM was strangely quiet about the transaction, with any press being handled by Wasserstein.More recently, a source with knowledge of the transaction said the sale price reported by the New
York Times—$417 million—is accurate, which puts the EBITDA multiple right around 8x based on $55 million in earnings.Those figures fell short of the reported $500 million Apax was seeking, but it’s still a big sale—albeit 34 percent less than when Apax bought it from Wasserstein in 2007. Especially for a company with legacy roots that has tried to move quickly into a more digitally-oriented business model. Plus, the deal reveals where private equity still finds value in such operations and allows ALM to begin fueling its growth with more capital. FOLIO: How are subscriptions breaking down between print and digital products?Carter: The large firms are all taking pure digital. To counter that we also revamped how we sold to individuals—the smaller firms and attorneys. We have a metered paywall that allows you to read five articles before you hit it, then you get an offer based on what you’ve been reading. We’ve had a significant increase in individual sales and 40 percent of those customers are taking a print/digital bundle from us. So we’re still selling a good bit of print.FOLIO: How have you invested in your technology to support these initiatives?Carter: We use as much off-the-shelf as we can. We’re willing to pay a little more for a premium product. That’s allowed us to easily expand. And going forward it’s becoming easier to pull it out and replace it if it loses its best-in-class. We’re much more in the buy camp, but that doesn’t apply to everything. We do some of our own custom development. During the economic downturn in 2009, ALM became an independent company following a split from Incisive Media. Apax dropped its stake in ALM from 71 percent to 51 percent and the Royal Bank of Scotland took over the remaining 49 percent in a debt-for-equity swap.FOLIO: sat down with ALM CEO Bill Carter, who joined the company in 2012, for an exclusive interview about the sale and what’s in store for the company going forward.FOLIO: How did the deal come together? Why did Wasserstein decide to double-dip?Bill Carter: [Apax] acquired us in 2007 and the deal was reaching the end of its lifecycle. Because of the 2009 restructuring, there were restrictions put on what the company could do and it limited our growth opportunities. It prompted the board to have a discussion on what was right for the company and they began looking for interested parties.Wasserstein emerged because they had the deepest understanding of our revenue streams and they appreciated our challenges.FOLIO: What goes into valuing a B2B media company these days and how is that different from just five or six years ago?Carter: I think the markets are pretty good right now in terms of raising debt, especially if you have a business that’s performing well.
Buyers want to look at the stability of your revenue streams and there’s certainly a bias toward subscription revenues and events.There is still a factor that goes into any B2B company that’s being looked at right now and that is how well they held up during the 2008 cycle. Everyone acknowledges a revenue swing. But how big was that swing?We swung a lot less and stayed relatively profitable. We have cyclical and counter-cyclical revenue, which stabilizes things. Scale plays a factor, too.FOLIO: A couple years ago you told FOLIO: you were working on improving ALM through customer growth and renewals, expanding the sales organization and adding more product technology like RivalEdge. How have you evolved that thinking since then?Carter: The biggest initiative that guided us over the last three years has been corporate subscriptions. Historically, ALM had sold to individuals, not to law firms. In 2012, we did an analysis at the top firms and what they were spending with us. We had breadth, but not depth. One lawyer would route his subscription to 20 other lawyers, but it was an individual sale.We set as our goal the top 850 law firms—they should each have one license to all ALM’s products. And we could tailor that content to how they wanted it.To do that we had to re-engineer marketing and sales—bring in sales experts who knew how sell licenses.We also had to completely rebuild the infrastructure. We grew up as a roll-up of acquisitions. Everyone had their own groups. We standardized the websites and print products, but more importantly we standardized the taxonomy. So now we can serve up the content that’s relevant to that user.This was the area that got Wasserstein excited. It cracked a problem they saw in 2005, 2006—how do you get that younger reader?FOLIO: We’re talking digital now, aren’t we?Carter: Yes. When we looked at the lawyers who had the subscriptions and also looked at the online usage we had many more people getting our daily alerts. But they were hitting the paywall. The associates don’t have the ability to make that purchase. So we went to the corporate librarians—younger attorneys are getting the alerts but now they’re reading the content.And that’s why Wasserstein won [the deal]. Wasserstein got that immediately, the other bidders didn’t understand it as much.FOLIO: How have the site license sales been performing?Carter: We’ve had double-digit growth on corporate site licenses. Our circulation counts are way up and our circulation revenue is way up overall. Circulation is all of our subscription brand products, separate from our information solutions, which are also subscription-based.last_img read more

The Wilmington Insider For April 18 2018

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Below is a round-up of what’s going on in Wilmington on Wednesday, April 18, 2018:Happening Today:Weather: Partly sunny, with a high near 53. West wind around 9 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph.In The Community: The Aleppo Shriners Circus returns to the Shriners Auditorium (99 Fordham Road) during April school vacation week. The circus will run from Wednesday, April 18 to Sunday, April 22:Wednesday, April 18: 2pm & 7pmThursday, April 219: 2pm & 7pmFriday, April 20: 10am, 2pm, & 7pmSaturday, April 21: 10am, 2pm, & 7pmSunday, April 22: 1pm & 5pmTickets cost $10.  The Box Office opens on April 9. Call 1-800-700-0013 to purchase tickets.  Parking is free. Proceeds from the carnival will benefit the Auditorium. Join the Facebook event HERE.In The Community: The Wilmington Police Department will NOT be offering its weekly safety seat installs at the Wilmington Public Safety Building today.In The Community: The Friends of the Wilmington Memorial Library’s Book Store Next Door (183 Middlesex Avenue) is open from 10am to 4pm. All books are $2 or less!  Every penny of every sale benefits the Wilmington Memorial Library. Learn more HERE.Leaves/Brush Drop Off: The Wilmington Yardwaste Center on Old Main Street will be open today from 8am to 2pm for the drop-off of leaves and brush. Residents will need to purchase a punch-card for $15 in order to enter the yardwaste center. Punch-cards will be available for purchase through the Collector’s Office at Town Hall and will allow up to 5 vehicle trips to the yardwaste center per card. NO GRASS CLIPPINGS OR STUMPS WILL BE ACCEPTED. Commercial vehicles will not be allowed. Make sure to bring photo identification to show you are a Wilmington resident.At The Library: Tech Help Drop-In at 2pm. Beyond The Fairy Tale: Interactive Theatre Workshop for Kids at 3pm. [Learn more HERE.]At The Senior Center: Podiatrist at 9:30am. SBF Exercise at 9:45am. Special Exercise at 11am. Cards at 1pm. Fun Singers at 3pm. [Learn more HERE.]Wilmington Public Schools: NO SCHOOL this week due to April vacation.Go Wildcats!: 4 Wilmington High teams are in action today. See the schedule HERE.(NOTE: What did I miss? Let me know by commenting below, commenting on the Facebook page, or emailing wilmingtonapple@gmail.com. I may be able to update this post.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedThe Wilmington Insider For April 21, 2018In “5 Things To Do Today”The Wilmington Insider For April 20, 2018In “5 Things To Do Today”The Wilmington Insider For April 22, 2018In “5 Things To Do Today”last_img read more

Another body found while searching for missing UK girl in

first_imgKUALA LUMPUR: A body has been found in the search for a London schoolgirl missing in Malaysia, police said on Tuesday. Nora Quoirin, 15, went missing from the Dusan Hotel in Seremban, south of capital Kuala Lumpur, on August 4, reports Efe news. Negri Sembilan Police Chief Mohamad Mat Yusop said that at 2.30 p.m., a body of a female “with white skin” had been found. “As of now we cannot confirm who that body is,” he said, adding that a forensics and pathology team will determine the identity. Also Read – Watch: Donald Trump says Florida faces absolute monster hurricane Advertise With Us The Lucie Blackman Trust, a British NGO working closely with the family, said on Facebook it could not confirm the body is that of the teenager’s, “however it sadly seems likely”. “Investigations are underway to confirm identity and cause of death,” the trust added. On Monday, Quoirin’s French father and Irish mother offered a 50,000-ringgit (about $12,000) reward donated by an anonymous Belfast businessman for information leading to her return. Also Read – Pakistan test-fires 290-km range missile Advertise With Us Her parents had previously said Quoirin was born with holoprosencephaly, a disorder which affects brain development, that she “struggles with coordination” and would not have gone anywhere on her own. Local police have been investigating her disappearance as a missing person’s inquiry. However, the Lucie Blackman Trust said last week that “contrary to several reports that police are NOT treating Nora’s disappearance as an abduction, the family have been told directly by police that they are treating it as both an abduction and missing persons case”. Hundreds of searchers have been sweeping the nature reserve in Negeri Sembilan, about 60 km south of Kuala Lumpur, where the girl disappeared. A recording of her mother saying “Nora darling, Nora I love you, Mum is here” has been repeatedly played on loudspeakers into the jungle over the past few days.last_img read more

Corruption in railway recruitment again

first_imgA quarter close to the railway minister is making millions over the recruitment of 865 cleaners to the Bangladesh Railway (BR), alleged Railway Sramik Karmachari Sangram Parishad, a platform of BR staffs backed by the ruling Awami League. The general manager (GM) of the BR’s East Zone on 27 December told a recent operational review meeting that he had been facing pressure from the AL leaders, including ministers and parliamentarians, to recruit people loyal to them. The railway minister, however, was not present at the meeting attended by all the top officers of the organisation, with director general Md Amzad Hossain in the chair. The cleaners, known as khalasis, are government employees of the 20th grade, the last tier. Their basic pay is Tk 8,250. The recruitment test’s viva voce was held in 2015, but the procedure was stalled due to an ongoing case. railwayGM Abdul Hye in that meeting told the DG that he could not even appoint a family member of a recently deceased railway staff because of the minister’s non-cooperation, according to four officers present at the meeting who all sought anonymity. The DG, however, did not make any comment on the issue. Md Mizanur Rahman, chief mechanical engineer of the railway’s west zone, is the convener of the recruitment committee. He, too, did not want to give further details about the problem. Speaking to Prothom Alo at his office on 3 January, Abdul Hye said he was against appointing anyone by taking bribes, adding that the applicants mostly come from lower class families.Referring to the arrest of former railway GM Yusuf Ali Mridha and Omar Faruq, personal secretary to the former rail minister Suranjit Sen Gupta, with Tk 7 million allegedly made from rail recruitment business on 9 April in 2012, Abdul Hye said it was time the railway rectified its reputation. Speaking to Prothom Alo on 31 Decmeber, rail minister M Mujibul Haque said, “I don’t know what the GM said on 27 December. A number of journalists, ministers, MPs, political leader and leaders of different cultural organisations made recommendations for the appointments. You can also recommend. The appointments, however, will be done following the policy.”The Railway Shramik Karmachari Sangram Parishad held a press conference at the Chittagong Press Club on 31 December protesting the irregularities regarding the appointment of the cleaners. Its convener Mokhlesur Rahman alleged that a syndicate close to the rail minister was finalising the appointment list in exchange of bribes.Replying to the accusations, the rail minister said the people questioning the recruitment process were ‘Jamaat and BNP supporters’. He also said he wanted to end the recruitment process as soon as possible.The railway authorities, meanwhile, cancelled the allotment of residence to Mokhlesur Rahman’s son, a junior auditor, on 1 January, the day after the press conference.Mokhlesur claimed the cancelation was an act of vengeance.*This report, originally published in Prothom Alo print edition, has been rewritten in English by Quamrul Hasan.last_img read more

Venezuela opposition takes steps to seize oil revenue

first_imgVenezuelans line up as they wait for a free lunch at the “Divina Providencia” migrant shelter outskirts of Cucuta, on the Colombian-Venezuelan border, Colombia on 13 February 2019. Photo: ReutersVenezuela’s opposition leader Juan Guaido took another step Wednesday in an international bid to economically starve president Nicolas Maduro’s regime, announcing the appointment of a new board for Citgo, the US-based arm of state oil firm PDVSA.Guaido—who has been recognised as acting president by more than 50 countries and also heads the opposition-controlled National Assembly legislature, which appointed the new board—is locked in a battle with Maduro for control of the crisis-hit country.The United States, which is leading the push to topple Maduro, has sanctioned key regime financial assets including Citgo, and on Wednesday president Donald Trump once more refused to rule out military action against the leftist leader.Announcing the new six-member board on Twitter, Guaido said it “will be made up of qualified Venezuelans, who are free of corruption and without any partisan affiliation.”“With this decision, we are not only protecting our assets, we are avoiding the ongoing destruction and loss of the business,” said Guaido, who declared himself interim president after incumbent Maduro announced victory in polls the opposition said were rigged.The previous board was named by Maduro, who has presided over the economic collapse of Venezuela.The country is wracked by recession and hyperinflation, while millions of people are suffering from shortages of basic necessities such as food and medicine.‘US blockade’Venezuela earns 96 per cent of its revenues through oil but its production has dropped to a 30-year low of 1.1 million barrels a day.The US was its biggest single customer, buying almost half of its production, which represented 75 per cent of the country’s liquidity.Caracas says the “US blockade” has cost it $30 billion.In announcing the latest raft of sanctions last month, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Citgo can continue to operate, but its earnings must be deposited into a blocked account in the United States, out of reach of Maduro’s regime.As Venezuela’s opposition moved to replace Citgo’s leadership, Trump was hosting Colombia’s president Ivan Duque for talks on the crisis gripping its Latin American neighbour.Declaring himself “sad” about the “turmoil” in the oil-rich nation, Trump demanded that Maduro unblock US aid shipments to the country, sitting on the Colombian side of the border.Key to Guaido’s strategy to oust Maduro is bringing in the aid that has been blocked by Venezuela’s military, at Maduro’s behest.Success would demonstrate to Venezuela’s people that Guaido is able to meet their needs.Maduro says the aid is a “political show” and would be a prelude to a US invasion.“You’ll see,” Trump told reporters at the White House when asked if thousands of US troops could deploy.Duque, whose country has taken in large numbers of Venezuelan refugees, also lambasted Maduro, saying that “obstructing the access of humanitarian aid is a crime against humanity.”‘Feast of hatred’“I think he’s making a terrible mistake” by not letting in the aid, Trump said of Maduro.“We’re trying to get food to people that are starving. You have people starving in Venezuela.”Maduro hit back at the two leaders, terming the meeting a “feast of hatred” and warning: “Hands off Venezuela.”At a huge opposition rally on Tuesday, Guaido vowed that humanitarian aid would enter the country on 23 February.“We have almost 300,000 Venezuelans who will die if the aid doesn’t enter,” he said.In his latest attempt to erode Maduro’s authority over the military, Guaido added: “Here is a direct order to the armed forces: allow in the humanitarian aid once and for all (and) end the repression.”Guaido’s team has met with Brazilian officials to set up a second aid storage centre on that border. The new right-wing government of President Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil has joined the growing coalition against Maduro.But Maduro has so far resisted, portraying himself in the mold of historic Latin American anti-imperialist leaders.He has backing from Russia and China, as well as his armed forces.Moscow weighed in on Tuesday, with foreign minister Sergei Lavrov warning “against all interference in Venezuela’s domestic affairs, including the use of force threatened by Washington.”There have been growing rumours about possible US preparations for some kind of military involvement ever since Trump’s hawkish national security advisor John Bolton was photographed with a notepad reading “5,000 troops to Colombia?”However, on Wednesday the State Department point man for Venezuela, Elliott Abrams, played down the idea.Military intervention “is not a path that the US government is pursuing,” he said. “I don’t see a reason” for the use of force.last_img read more

Baltimore Dont Believe the Hype

first_imgBy Sean Yoes, Baltimore AFRO Editorsyoes@afro.comI don’t remember a time quite like this in Baltimore; to paraphrase the great Chinua Achebe, everything is falling apart.As we continue to reel in the aftermath of the Uprising, which was sparked four years ago this month after the death of Freddie Gray (ruled a homicide) in police custody, the city’s physical and political infrastructures continue to crumble. Since the Uprising, we’ve had the consent decree, five police commissioners, the Gun Trace Task Force, the murder of Det. Sean Suiter and one of those police commissioners, Darryl De Sousa, headed to federal prison for tax crimes.The latest brick in the city’s towering wall of shame is a burgeoning ethics scandal seemingly drowning the mayoral reign of Catherine Pugh, who has taken an indefinite leave of absence from the mayor’s chair (currently filled by City Council President Bernard “Jack” Young).And despite the public assertions of some members of Pugh’s staff that the mayor intends to return to her post, Pugh’s path to a second term seems dubious at best; impossible is more like it. I don’t know if the mayor broke any laws (she and her supporters say she didn’t), but there are powerful people in this state who are trying to charge her criminally.Sean Yoes (Courtesy Photo)Let’s not get it twisted: Mayor Pugh got messed up in the game because Mayor Pugh got messed up in the game. But, is she the first politician in Mobtown to play?No disrespect to the memory of William Donald Schaefer. He was arguably the most effective mayor in Baltimore’s history and I’m not accusing him of criminality and I have no evidence he ever broke any laws; but, it seems implausible that Schaeffer during a protean political career as a member of the Baltimore City Council, city council president, mayor of Baltimore, governor of Maryland and Maryland comptroller never had to directly engage quid pro quo in a statewide political apparatus rife with it.We can debate the inequity of Baltimore’s political machinations (and we should) to exhaustion. But, the more pressing question for us as a city is how do we move forward?A couple of days ago I heard the editorial of Dan Joerres, president and general manager of WBAL TV, and his words actually stopped me in my tracks.“In the early 2000s billboards around town had the single word “believe” in bold white letters on a black background. Rather than a statement, today’s version would probably ask the question, “believe in what?”” said Joerres.I don’t know Joerres and as we say in West Baltimore, “I don’t mean no harm,” but for him to invoke the amorphous slogan crafted by then Baltimore Mayor Martin O’Malley, the same man who gave us the so-called zero tolerance policing policy is borderline diabolical.“Our situation may call for a real life bat signal, not calling for any one superhero, but many to rescue our town,” Joerres added. “We are calling on all young minds, fresh perspectives, with the aptitude, the desire and the moral compass to lead…new faces of fearlessness willing to develop plans to rid our streets of crime with both strength and compassion.”Then Joerres ended his soliloquy with a cute little bow.  “It’s time to believe again,” he said. Again, I don’t mean no harm but, my ears translate “it’s time to believe again,” to “let’s make Baltimore great again.”So, here’s the thing: there are hundreds of young (and older), talented, brilliant, fearless, dedicated daughters and sons of this city, who literally risk their lives everyday in an effort to “rescue our town.” I actually wrote a book partly dedicated to them and their heroics. So, what we need to do instead of looking for mysterious superheros to come and save the day, we need to uplift, invest in and support the myriad superheros already on the ground doing the grimy work of keeping this city from being torn asunder.However, I suspect there is one universal truth for all of us who love our city–we’re pretty much out of time. And saving our city demands manifestly more than the unearthing of a feckless slogan.last_img read more

Workout tips for pregnant women

first_imgOne of the biggest stereotypes in our society is that pregnant women should avoid anything strenuous but keeping fit during the nine months is one of the most important factors that keeps the mother and baby healthy. Do cardio and don’t shy away from strength training, say experts Fitness trainers have doled out tips for a safe workout and fitness during pregnancy: Planning the workout: If you workout already and just do cardio, you might consider incorporating strength training to your regime. It will help you build muscle which will in turn help you carry the baby around and deal with all the stress on your back during pregnancy. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfStart slow: Before doing any exercise, make sure your form is correct. Seek professional help. Relying on workout videos is not advisable. Also, don’t trust your coach blindly. Ask questions such as the names of the exercises, muscles involved, benefits. Focus on learning. Be patient: Results don’t show overnight. You have got to keep working on yourself everyday. You’ll definitely see results if you train properly, rest adequately and eat nutritious food. If any of the three are missing, results tend to slow down. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive Don’t just stick to one type of workout: To be able to move better you need to mobilise properly before any workout. To maintain or even increase your flexibility, you need to do the required stretches. Stretching and mobilising will not only help you release all the stiffness in your muscles but also help you perform the strength exercises better. Nutrition: If you’re working out but not keeping your nutrition in check then the workout will do you more bad than good. On top of that if you’re pregnant and working out then you will need a well formulated diet to keep you healthy. Don’t run away from fat. It has a lot of functions in your body including hormone production and regulation, transportation and absorption of fat soluble vitamins, regeneration of the covering of your nerves, building up of your cell membrane. Proteins are the building blocks for our body. You need it to preserve your muscle mass and/or to increase your muscle mass if you have resistance training in your workout schedule. Apart from that, protein helps to strengthen immunity, contribute to production of hormones, to name a few.last_img read more

3 Things Entrepreneurs Need to Understand About Blockchain Technology

first_img Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now 5 min read This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience. The rapid evolution of the internet has reinvented what it means to be a business owner. In the same way that the digital economy has empowered tens of thousands of hopeful entrepreneurs over the last decade, blockchain technology promises to ignite a new generation of innovators.Though much of the fintech coverage is focused on the ephemeral benefits of cryptocurrency exchanges and returns, there is far more opportunity, especially for engineers, designers, and makers generally, when we think about the long lasting impact that blockchains can have on how we organize and store systems within our society.As an entrepreneur, it can be difficult to navigate this space and separate the signal from the noise when it comes to determining the key information to understand. There are many self-proclaimed experts who simply want to steal your attention and sell you a product. The best entrepreneurs are able to separate these distractions from what is truly important and find ways to use the best of this technology to make a difference.Here are three essential implications of the technology, relevant to entrepreneurs, that will help to define the fundamental tenets of how starting a business will be different in a blockchain economy.Related: 5 Essential Podcasts for Entrepreneurs Serious About Cryptocurrency1. A new fundraising mechanism.Access to capital is one of the biggest points of friction for founders. This obstacle becomes twice as hard when you are living outside of an economic hub, as there are fewer investors willing to take a chance on you. From a global market’s perspective, this is largely inefficient and a waste of potential, given that there is a surplus of talent needing capital to help kickstart their ideas into action.In a blockchain economy, initial coin offerings will become the standard vehicles for startup (and large enterprise) fundraising. An ICO, as they are shorthanded, is effectively the modern day IPO, a tool to “crowdfund” capital to companies in an extremely secure and efficient manner.Companies like ConnectJob, an on-demand economy built on top of a blockchain, are already beginning to announce their token issuing, achieving rapid global growth via the crowd. Unlike the traditional markets, these coin offerings are accessible to anyone interested, regardless of geography, so there can be a much larger base of potential investors. This opens up an entire new economy of innovation, powered by ICOs, that can scale quickly and escape the sluggish and elitist venture capital community.At the same time, it is really important to be cautious whenever investing in a coin offering, as there are many scammers and hackers who are out to take your money. Given the lack of regulations, as it is still very much so a developing space, you should proceed with extreme caution, for when a deal seems too good to be true, it generally is. In sum, you should really only invest in deals you have thoroughly researched and have conviction about.Related: How Digital Wallets and Mobile Payments Are Evolving and What It Means for You2. Seamless systems.Many of today’s most dynamic and massive industries are built on top of intermediary parties. The government. Healthcare. Freight. Education. Voting. The list goes on and on. In each of these industries, middlemen, operating as brokerage services, dictate the ebb and flow of the sector. But, at the same time, ask anyone ingrained in some of these friction-ful industries and they will tell you, these intermediary services can drive prices up and slow down progress velocity. Working internationally, brokers can be a nightmare to deal with and charge exorbitant prices for seemingly menial work.Luckily, we can supplant the need for conventional intermediary parties by using Ethereum smart contracts to automatically verify and validate issues of trust and verification. At a high level, smart contracts operate independent of any one individual and are essentially an algorithm that authenticates information. With smart contracts implemented across a wide variety of industries, we can stop relying on humans to handle our most important data.Entrepreneurs can abstract this technological breakthrough and apply it to a number of pressing problems — many of which stem from the foundational issue of human error. For instance, TraDove has applied the power of the blockchain to unlock corporate demand for a token-based business-to-business (B2B) marketing, sales, and trade platform. This is the first of many implementations that are likely to reach a wide scale.Related: 6 Cryptocurrencies You Should Know About (and None of Them Are Bitcoin)3. A community-driven priority.In a distributed ecosystem, built with blockchains, the power lies with the people. In other words, there cannot be one singular entity with controlling powers over the rest of the network. This, among other things, protects against top-down corruption and manipulation. It also restores power to the community as a whole.ODEM, an on-demand education marketplace, has been able to leverage existing relationships to cultivate an active and inspired audience around their upcoming token offering. Started by the founders of Excelorators, an education company with a network over 200 professors, ODEM’s community attracts educators, students, and investors. All three share a common goal of eliminating intermediaries and costs involved in traditional education.As a result, building a strong and active user base that is passionate about your mission and project will become essentially important for the next wave of companies and entrepreneurs. Whether you are planning an ICO or working to develop your product roadmap, it will be critical, perhaps now more than ever before, to future plan with your community in mind. Entrepreneurs will need to become master communicators who can persuade their vision to the masses, such that they achieve buy-in and are able to work quickly and effectively.Related: IPOs Are Boring But You Must Keep an Eye on These 9 Initial Coin Offerings Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. December 15, 2017 Enroll Now for Freelast_img read more

Wrestler gets parole after 30year prison sentence for recklessly transmitting HIV

first_imgShare this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… A judge granted Michael Johnson, the former college wrestler known as the Tiger Mandingo, parole from his 30-year (reduced to 10 years) prison sentence. He received the sentence after ‘recklessly’ transmitting HIV to six male partners. Michael Johnson initially faced 30 years | Photo: Instagram @tigermandingo He initially received his 30.5 years prison sentence.In 2016, a Missouri appeals court overturned this conviction due to the timing of evidence. Last year, Johnson agreed to a 10-year, no contest plea deal rather than face another trial.‘We had some hopes, because of all the support Michael had received and a couple of other factors, that he would get out at an earlier date,’ one of his lawyers, Eric Selig, said.His early release depends on him not accruing any violations over the next year and a half.If released in 2019, Johnson plans to live with his friend Meredith Rowan, who attended his parole hearing, in Indiana.Many activists and organizations, such as the American Medical Association, criticize laws singling out HIV. Many states in recent years have changed their laws about HIV exposure. Last year, California passed a bill that reduced HIV exposure from a felony to a misdemeanor.Got a news tip? Want to share your story? Email us . eTN Chatroom for Readers (join us)center_img However, at the end of 2016, he received an opportunity for a new trial.According to BuzzFeed News, though, Johnson’s lawyers say he’s been granted parole. He will remain incarceration at Boonville Correctional Facility until 9 October 2019, six years after his initial arrest.The long and complicated storyJohnson was a star college wrestler at Missouri’s Lindenwood University. Police first arrested him in 2013 and his trial was full of race and sex discussion. Evidence presented to the court included images and descriptions of Johnson’s ‘huge’ penis. Civil rights groups urge court to accept appeal of man who may have been sentenced to death for being gaySydney man pleads guilty to GBH, infecting lover with HIVGay man given death penalty after jurors claim he would ‘enjoy’ male prisonRead the full article on Gaystarnews:  :https://www.gaystarnews.com/article/wrestler-prison-transmitting-hiv-parole/ GAYSTARNEWS-last_img read more

Costa Rican fisheries institute VP fired over links to fishing industry

first_imgNine months after a complaint was filed to the executive branch’s Public Ethics Office denouncing Costa Rican Fisheries Institute (Incopesca) Vice President Álvaro Moreno’s links to the commercial fishing industry, members of President Laura Chinchilla’s Cabinet on Tuesday fired Moreno from the government oversight agency.Communications Minister Francisco Chacón confirmed the Cabinet’s decision on Thursday.“The Cabinet decided Tuesday to terminate the services of Álvaro Moreno due to a report from the Public Ethics Office and the recommendation from that office that Moreno should be fired,” Chacón told The Tico Times.Chinchilla will announce a replacement for Moreno in the next two weeks, he said.The Tico Times attempted to contact Moreno, but he did not answer his cellphone.Incopesca President Luis Dobles said he had not received an official notice of Moreno’s sacking from the Chinchilla administration, but that he would “respect such a decision if it had been made.” Parallel to his duties at Incopesca, Moreno works as an attorney in the central Pacific coastal city of Puntarenas, where much of the country’s fishing industry is based. As a lawyer, Moreno represents fishing companies, including a group of fishermen who were detained in 2009 for fishing without using Turtle Excluder Devices, which is required by law. On several occasions, Moreno served as interim president of Incopesca while Dobles was out of the country, although Dobles said the longest Moreno had served as interim president was 10 days.As vice president of Incopesca, Moreno, who was appointed to the post by Chinchilla’s Cabinet in 2010, would have served a four-year term. He was also the vice president of Incopesca’s board of directors, a one-year appointment voted on by Incopesca board members. Tico Times reporter L. Arias contributed to this story. Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more