Celebrated chef Jiggs Kalra passes away

first_imgNew Delhi: Celebrated chef and culinary revivalist Jaspal Inder Singh Kalra, popularly known as Jiggs Kalra, passed away early morning on Tuesday.He was 71. Announcing his father’s demise, the iconic chef’s restaurateur son Zorawar Kalra said his father was his “mentor, inspiration and his biggest hero”. “With profound grief and sadness, I would like to announce the demise of my beloved father, Jiggs Kalra. He was my mentor, my inspiration and my biggest hero,” Zorawar said. Kalra, who held titles like the “Czar of Indian Cuisine” and “Tastemaker to the Nation”, conferred upon him by eminent writer Khushwant Singh, was best known for his role as a culinary revivalist.last_img read more

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Good news for NB TransCanada to reopen Friday as floodwaters recede

first_imgFREDERICTON – New Brunswick has hit a major flood-recovery milestone: Transportation officials hope to reopen the crucial Trans-Canada Highway between Fredericton and Moncton at noon Friday.The four-lane stretch — used by an average of 10,000 to 12,000 vehicles daily — has been closed for the past week because of record-breaking flooding in the province.The water has receded from the road but crews were removing debris Thursday, mainly logs and driftwood, as inspectors walked the route looking for damage.“The evidence at this point is that there is erosion to the shoulder with a minimal amount of undermining,” said Norm Clouston, general manager of Maritime Road Development Corp., which manages the key stretch of highway.Premier Brian Gallant announced Thursday that the province has asked the Armed Forces to conduct a “reconnaissance mission” to determine if the military could provide assistance in the cleanup.“We are asking them to see if there are tasks that are appropriate to delegate to the Canadian Armed Forces during the recovery and cleanup. We certainly hope that the answer will be yes, because we would like to see as much support as possible to try to get the cleanup done as quickly as possible,” Gallant said.While water levels are receding, Gallant said, there are still many people with flooded properties, and efforts are focused on keeping them safe.Geoffrey Downey, spokesman for the Emergency Measures Organization, said it may be safe for some residents to return to their homes, but he urged people to take a cautious approach.“If it’s safe to get back into your home and begin, then absolutely. That’s the key thing we’re preaching right now. You have to do it safely,” he said.“I can only imagine how eager people are to get back and start figuring out what their immediate future holds, but it doesn’t make any sense if your home is still filled with water and part of the river. Hold on if you can and wait and do it safely.”In Fredericton, water levels were down to 6.8 metres after reaching 8.1 metres on Monday, and 8.36 at their peak. Flood stage in Fredericton is 6.5 metres.In Saint John, waters had gone down to 5.23 metres Thursday after being up to 5.75 metres days ago. But, he said the city is still well over flood stage.Downey said 1,516 people from 655 households had registered with the Red Cross, indicating they had evacuated their homes.The provincial government launched a Disaster Financial Assistance program last week to help businesses, municipalities and individuals who suffered damage during the flood. The maximum assistance for private homes is $160,000, and $500,000 for small businesses and not-for-profit organizations. It is not available for recreational properties.On Thursday, Gallant said his government will help people with damage to recreational properties but have not come up with a program yet.“I want to set expectations very clearly that if we get to a point that there is a program in place — which we’re confident there will be — it will not be as much financial support as those that have residential properties that have been damaged would receive,” he said.The federal government pays about 90 per cent of the assistance for residential properties, and Gallant said if Ottawa would help cottage owners, his government would match it.Officials say residents still need to be careful handling the water, since it has likely been fouled by different contaminants.The Canadian Red Cross has begun distributing flood cleanup kits, which include a mop, broom, scrub brush, sponges, latex gloves, masks and garbage bags.Mary Hamilton of Fredericton, who lined up to get a cleanup kit Thursday, said her brother’s apartment was flooded.“He had at least two feet of water in his apartment. So I’m here to pick up a clean-up kit so I can give him a hand,” she said.“Obviously everything in his place is under water — even his cleaning supplies — so we don’t know how useful they would be, so I picked up a kit today.”last_img read more

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Its hard to operate a school like that Principal at Thunder Bay

first_imgWillow Fiddler APTN National NewsDennis Franklin Cromarty high school in Thunder Bay, Ont., was the centre of an extensive inquest held by the province.It was looking into the circumstances around the deaths of seven First Nations students, six of them attended the school.The principal of DFC was there for it all and now he’s taking a new path.wfiddler@aptn.calast_img

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Pakistan says Indian fire killed 3 of its soldiers

first_imgIslamabad: The Pakistan Army said on Tuesday that it lost three soldiers due to “unprovoked” Indian firing across the Line of Control.Military spokesman Major Gen Asif Ghafoor said in a statement that Indian troops resorted to “unprovoked” firing in Rakhchakri area of Rawalakot Sector along the LOC. Three soldiers were killed, he said. Ghafoor said that the Pakistan Army responded effectively. Meanwhile, Pakistan-occupied Kashmir “Prime Minister” Raja Farooq Haider on Monday said his government has prepared a plan for evacuation of civilian population from the highly vulnerable areas along the Line of Control (LoC) in case of emergency, according to a report in Dawn. Tensions between India and Pakistan flared up after the Pulwama terror attack claimed by Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed. PTIlast_img read more

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Libya UN humanitarian chief warns of impact of fighting on civilians in

Valerie Amos, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and UN Emergency Relief Coordinator, issued a statement warning that supplies of drinking water, food and medicines are running low in Sirte, and there is no functioning electricity.Thousands of people have fled Sirte, the hometown of Colonel Qadhafi, in recent days amid intense fighting in the city. It is one of the few remaining holdouts since the former government fell after months of conflict in the North African country.“I call on all parties to spare civilians from the effects of hostilities, and to comply with international humanitarian law,” Ms. Amos said.“The sick and injured must be allowed to seek and receive medical assistance, and both civilians and captured fighters must be treated with respect, regardless of their origin or political affiliation.”Ms. Amos noted that while aid workers are bringing relief to those who have fled Sirte, heavy fighting prevents them from getting supplies to those still inside the city.“Life-saving supplies have been pre-positioned in the surrounding areas for delivery as further humanitarian access is established.”The Emergency Relief Coordinator’s remarks echo those of Georg Charpentier, the deputy head of the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), who last week took part in a humanitarian assessment mission that visited both the city of Misrata, which was besieged for weeks during the conflict, and the outskirts of Sirte. 10 October 2011The United Nations humanitarian chief voiced extreme concern today about the impact on civilians of continued fighting in and around the Libyan city of Sirte between forces supporting the interim Government and those loyal to the ousted regime of Muammar al-Qadhafi. read more

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Business Highlights

___Hope of coming back to shuttered GM plant fades for workersTOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — It’s looking less likely that General Motors will be making vehicles again at the Lordstown, Ohio, assembly plant that shut down last winter. Instead, GM wants to sell the plant to a fledgling electric vehicle maker and build a battery factory. The plant’s fate is playing out amid negotiations aimed at ending the nearly 2-week-old strike against GM by 49,000 workers.___US consumer spending rises just 0.1% in AugustWASHINGTON (AP) — American consumers increased their spending by just 0.1% in August, the smallest gain in six months, even as their incomes rose at a solid pace. The Commerce Department says that personal income increased 0.4%, up from a small gain in the previous month.___Fiat Chrysler to pay $40M fine for overstating sales numbersDETROIT (AP) — Fiat Chrysler has agreed to pay $40 million to settle a complaint by securities regulators that it misled investors by overstating monthly sales numbers. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission says the company inflated sales by paying dealers to report fake numbers between 2012 and 2016.___Wells Fargo hires New York Mellon’s Scharf as its new CEONEW YORK (AP) — Wells Fargo has named its third CEO in as many years as the bank attempts to put behind it a series of recent scandals. The bank said that Charles Scharf, the chief executive of the Bank of New York Mellon, will take over for C. Allen Parker, who has led Wells Fargo since March after its second CEO stepped down.___US durable goods orders edge up slight 0.2% in AugustWASHINGTON (AP) — Orders to U.S. factories for big-ticket manufactured goods showed a slight increase in August but a key sector that tracks business investment plans declined, likely reflecting fallout from President Donald Trump’s trade wars. The Commerce Department says that orders for durable goods edged up 0.2% in August after a much bigger 2% gain in July.___Report: No-deal Brexit could leave UK with medical shortagesLONDON (AP) — A UK watchdog says there’s still a “significant amount” of work to do to make sure the country has an adequate supply of medicine in case of a no-deal Brexit. In a report Friday, Britain’s National Audit Office said additional shipping chartered by the U.K. across the English Channel may not be ready by Oct. 31, when Britain plans to leave the European Union. One expert says there are concerns about adequate drugs for patients with epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, diabetes and certain cancers.___German govt says time is running out on BrexitLONDON (AP) — The German government says it’s still possible to reach a deal for Britain to leave the European Union on good terms next month, but cautioned that time is running out. Government spokesman Steffen Seibert said Friday that “with goodwill, it’s doable.” Chancellor Angela Merkel had told Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson in Berlin over a month ago that an agreement could be struck in 30 days, though she later noted it could also take longer.___Feds crack Medicare gene test fraud that peddled cheek swabsWASHINGTON (AP) — Federal law enforcement officials say they’ve taken down a $2 billion Medicare fraud scheme that enticed seniors to get their cheeks swabbed for unneeded DNA tests. Friday’s “Operation Double Helix” targeted telemarketing companies, doctors and labs, in a joint effort by the FBI, U.S. attorneys’ offices and the Health and Human Services inspector general. Officials say Medicare enrollees should refuse genetic tests unless ordered by their doctor.___Boeing CEO to testify before House committee on 737 MaxWASHINGTON (AP) — Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg has agreed to testify before a congressional committee investigating the grounded 737 Max. He’ll be joined at an Oct. 30 hearing by the chief engineer of the company’s commercial airplanes division and its chief pilot for the 737. Last week House Transportation Committee Chairman Peter DeFazio, D-Ore., formally asked that they appear. The committee has held three hearings since May on the Max, but no one from Boeing has testified.___US stocks fall; S&P 500 ends with 2nd straight weekly lossNEW YORK (AP) — Wall Street capped a choppy week with a second straight weekly loss for the S&P 500 as worries about a potential escalation in the trade war between the U.S. and China erased early gains. Technology companies led the broad slide for stocks as investors weighed a published report saying that the Trump administration is considering ways to limit U.S. investments in China. Washington and Beijing are scheduled to resume trade talks next month.___The S&P 500 index fell 15.83 points, or 0.5%, to 2,961.79. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 70.87 points, or 0.3%, to 26,820.25. The Nasdaq lost 91.03 points, or 1.1%, to 7,939.63. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks slipped 12.85 points, or 0.8%, to 1,520.48.The Associated Press read more

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Watchdog IRS credit cards used to buy wine for luncheon romance novels

AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email WASHINGTON – Poor oversight by the Internal Revenue Service allowed workers to use agency credit cards to buy wine for an expensive luncheon, dorky swag for managers’ meetings and, for one employee, romance novels and diet pills, an agency watchdog said Tuesday.Two IRS credit cards were used to buy online pornography, though the employees said the cards were stolen. One of the workers reported five agency credit cards lost or stolen.IRS employees used agency credit cards to make more than 273,000 purchases totalling nearly $108 million in 2010 and 2011, according to the report by the Treasury inspector general for tax administration.The vast majority of those purchases were legitimate, the report said. However, the report said the IRS has inadequate controls to prevent inappropriate purchases.For example, investigators found that one IRS employee spent $2,655 on diet pills, romance novels, steaks, a smartphone and baby-related items, including bottles, games and clothes. The case was referred to the IG’s office that investigates employee misconduct, the report said.Among other “improper” purchases identified by the inspector general:— $3,152 to rent a popcorn machine and to buy prizes for an employee event, including bandanas, stuffed animals, sunglasses and stovepipe hats.— $418 for novelty decorations and swag at managers’ meetings, including kazoos, bathtub toys and “Thomas the Tank Engine” wristbands.— $119 for Nerf footballs that were never used and were found stored in a filing cabinet.“Inadequate procedures to identify, report and address inappropriate use leaves the IRS purchase card program vulnerable to repeated violations of applicable laws and regulations,” said J. Russell George, the Treasury inspector general for tax administration.The report comes as the IRS faces intense scrutiny over agents targeting conservative groups for additional scrutiny when they applied for tax-exempt status. Documents released Monday show that liberal and progressive groups were singled out, too.Also, the inspector general released a report earlier this month that detailed lavish spending at employee conferences. In all, the agency spent nearly $50 million on employee conferences from 2010 through 2012.“Clearly, any inappropriate card use impacts our bottom line and is cause for concern,” said acting IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel, who took over the agency last month. “Wasteful spending cannot be tolerated, and any employees found to be abusing the system will be held accountable. In fact, we are following up on several inappropriate incidents mentioned in the report, ranging from internal actions to criminal charges.”“That said, more than 99.75 per cent of IRS purchases adhered to the rules,” Werfel added. “The IRS has made important progress over the past two years in strengthening the controls in our purchase card program. We are committed to protecting taxpayer resources, and we will take quick action to implement all of TIGTA’s recommendations.”The new report highlighted a 2010 conference in Washington for tax officials from other countries. At a luncheon, the IRS bought 28 bottles of wine — for 41 guests, the report said. A dinner at the conference cost the agency $140 a person, four times the allowable government rate at the time.In all, the agency spent more than $50,000 on meals, receptions and meetings at the five-day conference, the report said. Agency credit cards were used for about $12,500 of the purchases.“It is important to note that the luncheon described in the report took place in 2010 for an international business meeting of tax officials from several of the world’s largest countries. This meeting is an important forum for international leaders on major tax issues,” Werfel said. “However, given the excessive purchases for the luncheon, I am directing the IRS business units to more closely review spending in advance for any similar events to ensure all spending is appropriate.”The IRS participates in the General Services Administration’s SmartPay purchase card program. Under the program, agency employees can use purchase cards, which act like credit cards, to buy work-related items. The maximum amount for an individual purchase is $3,000.More expensive items are subject to competitive pricing policies.In 2010 and 2011, internal controls at the IRS found 327 cases in which employees divided their purchases to skirt the $3,000 limit. The inspector general’s office found an additional 34 cases. In all, the purchases totalled $493,000, the report said.The report said 94 employees were responsible for the purchases, including 22 workers who had done it more than once in a six-month period. However, the report said, none of the employees were disciplined.As for the two IRS employees whose cards were used to buy pornography, the inspector general’s report didn’t determine who bought the material or whether their cards were actually stolen. One of the employees is no longer at the agency. The IG is continuing to investigate the other employee, the report said.___Follow Stephen Ohlemacher on Twitter: http://twitter.com/stephenatap Watchdog: IRS credit cards used to buy wine for luncheon, romance novels for employee by Stephen OhlemacHer, The Associated Press Posted Jun 25, 2013 5:27 pm MDT read more

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World is failing newborns UNICEF says global mortality rates remain alarmingly high

“Every year, 2.6 million newborns around the world do not survive their first month of life. One million of them die the day they are born,” said UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore.”We know we can save the vast majority of these babies with affordable, quality health care solutions for every mother and every newborn. Just a few small steps from all of us can help ensure the first small steps of each of these young lives,” she added.UNHCRNewborn twin babies at Myanmar Refugee Camp in Bangladesh, born to their mother nine days ago after she fled her home in Myanmar. Globally, in low-income countries, the average newborn mortality rate is 27 deaths per 1,000 births, the report says. In high-income countries, that rate is 3 deaths per 1,000. The report also notes that 8 of the 10 most dangerous places to be born are in sub-Saharan Africa, where pregnant women are much less likely to receive assistance during delivery due to poverty, conflict and weak institutions. If every country brought its newborn mortality rate down to the high-income average by 2030, 16 million lives could be saved. According to the report, babies born in Japan, Iceland and Singapore have the best chance at survival, while newborns in Pakistan, the Central African Republic and Afghanistan face the worst odds.In Japan, one in 1,111 newborn babies die in the first month of life while in Pakistan, the ratio is one in 22. More than 80 per cent of newborn deaths are due to prematurity, complications during birth or infections such as pneumonia and sepsis, the report says.“Given that the majority of these deaths are preventable, clearly, we are failing the world’s poorest babies,” Ms. Fore said. © UNICEF/UN0156916/DickoSouleymane Ag Alf with his wife Makata Ag Issa and their twins Fatimatou and Zenabou in the city of Timbuktu, Mali, in December 2017. © UNICEF/UN0159228/NaftalinAwait Said looks at her newborn grandson Ayah, who suffers from jaundice and sepsis and weighs only 1.3 kilograms, as he lies in an incubator at the Juba Teaching Hospital, Juba, South Sudan, in January 2018. © UNICEF/UN0158802/NaftalinAmina Shallangwa, a UNICEF-supported midwife (third from left), talks with new mothers at a UNICEF-supported health clinic in Muna Garage IDP camp, Maiduguri, Borno State, northeast Nigeria, in 25 January 2018.,Unequal shots at lifeHighest newborn mortality rates1. Pakistan: 1 in 222. Central African Republic: 1 in 243. Afghanistan: 1 in 254. Somalia: 1 in 264. Lesotho: 1 in 264. Guinea-Bissau: 1 in 264. South Sudan: 1 in 268. Côte d’Ivoire: 1 in 279. Mali: 1 in 289. Chad: 1 in 28,Lowest newborn mortality rates1. Japan: 1 in 1,1112. Iceland: 1 in 1,0003. Singapore: 1 in 9094. Finland: 1 in 8335. Estonia: 1 in 7695. Slovenia: 1 in 7697. Cyprus: 1 in 7148. Belarus: 1 in 6678. Luxembourg: 1 in 6678. Norway: 1 in 6678. Republic of Korea: 1 in 667,© UNICEF/UN0157446/AyeneA pre-term baby is kept warm in an incubator at the UNICEF-supported Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Assosa General Hospital, in the remote Benishangul-Gumuz region of Ethiopia, in January 2018.,These deaths can be prevented with access to well-trained midwives, along with proven solutions like clean water, disinfectants, breastfeeding within the first hour, skin-to-skin contact and good nutrition. However, a shortage of well-trained health workers and midwives means that thousands don’t receive the life-saving support they need to survive. For example, while in Norway there are 218 doctors, nurses and midwives to serve 10,000 people, that ratio is one per 10,000 in Somalia.This month, UNICEF is launching Every Child ALIVE, a global campaign to demand and deliver solutions on behalf of the world’s newborns. read more

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Brock community invited to cheer on Bruce Trail runner Emily Allan

Friday may be a holiday for most of the University’s employees, but it’s no day off for Emily Allan.Sometime around mid-afternoon June 30, the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences staff member will be running across the Brock campus as she nears the finale of an epic three-week marathon of nearly 900 km along the entire length of the Bruce Trail.Allan has already raised more than $23,000 for Cystic Fibrosis  research. She set off June 10 from Tobermory, and despite days of miserable running conditions due to excessive rainfall, she’s keeping to her plan of crossing the finish line this Canada Day (Saturday) at the Bruce Trail’s southern terminus on Queenston Heights.But on Friday she will be passing through the Brock campus, where friends and backers are invited to cheer on the determined runner in the penultimate leg of her trek. Allan’s effort has been sponsored by the University and generously supported by many individual employees.Allan, who is also Brock’s varsity cross-country coach, is expected to reach campus sometime after 2:45 pm Friday. She will approach the campus along the Escarpment brow from the east, emerge behind the tennis courts and run behind Walker Complex, past Alphies and then back onto the forest trails behind Decew Residence.Supporters can get updates on her progress and expected arrival time by checking the End to End CF website.On Saturday July 1, people are also invited to run or walk along with Allan as she does the final 7 km of her mission, from Firemen’s Park in Niagara Falls to Queenston Heights. Walkers should depart Firemen’s Park by 10:30 or 11 am, and runners by 11:30 am.Allan will pass Firemen’s Park at approximately 12:30 pm, and should catch up with any supporters as they all reach the finish line.A free shuttle service provided by Brock alumnus Crispin Bottomley will take people from Queenston Heights back to their vehicles at Firemen’s Park. read more

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OZ Minerals reports strong outlook merger benefits identified but volatile operating environment

first_imgKey points from OZ Minerals’ financial results for the six months to 30 June 2008:Merger synergy benefits of A$27.5 million/y identified; more targetedIndustry-competitive operations; cash costs well below current commodity pricesDividend of A$0.05/share (unfranked) declared; DRP maintained at 2.5% discountSound underlying performance in a volatile environmentPro-forma consolidated revenue of A$1 billion and underlying NPAT of A$70.9 million for the half-yearNo share buy-back.“Excluding the effect of one-off items, net profit after tax attributable to members of the company (that is, for the entity that was known as Oxiana before implementation of the merger) was A$72.2 million for the six months to 30 June 2008”, said Andrew Michelmore, Managing Director and CEO of OZ Minerals. “This result does not reflect a consolidation of the former Oxiana and Zinifex”, he continued, “as the implementation of the merger occurred after the period being reported on today.“OZ Minerals’ operational performance has been very sound and, as reported in our recent Quarterly Report, production volumes at all sites has been strong. However, LME prices for copper and zinc (in Australian dollars) have been volatile; in the first half of 2008, copper was 6.2% higher on average than in the previous six months while zinc was 31.7% lower. This outcome, combined with the generally higher operating costs we reported in the Quarterly Report, has been the primary reason that the financial performance we are reporting today is not better,” Michelmore added.“Notwithstanding the negative impact of commodity price movements on our short-term performance,” he continued, “the long-term demand strength that we and many participants in the minerals industry have referred to many times remains intact, and OZ Minerals is exceptionally well-positioned to benefit”.The company has also released the full-year financial results for Zinifex and unaudited pro-forma financial information which is based on the assumption that Oxiana and Zinifex had been merged for the whole of the six-month period to 30 June 2008. The pro-forma data is provided solely for the purpose of providing market participants with a profile of the merged Company and should not be seen to be as a definitive statement of actual performance. Excluding the effect of one-off items and discontinued operations, Zinifex earned net profit after tax for the year ended 30 June 2008 of A$226.7 million.“Mining companies are faced with considerable volatility in both selling and input prices”, said Michelmore. “We can’t control everything, but we one key area we must control is the efficiency of our operations. OZ Minerals has five very efficient operations, which is a wonderful situation to be in, and we will continue to focus on continuous improvement in operational efficiency.”“In the first 50 days since the merger between Oxiana and Zinifex was implemented, we have identified net synergy benefits of A$27.5 million/y,” said Michelmore, “and we are all committed to attaining further benefits”. OZ Minerals has also identified one-off merger implementation costs of A$41.4 million. “Our target is to achieve a pay-back of the one-off costs of the merger within a year”, added Michelmore, “and I am confident we will do that.”last_img read more

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400 events promoting Irish arts organised across Europe for Irelands EU Presidency

first_imgMORE THAN 400 events to promote Irish arts and culture will take places across Europe during Ireland’s six-month Presidency of the Council of the EU, the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht has said.Minister Jimmy Deenihan said his Department was promoting Irish arts and culture worldwide through regular grant rounds and special initiatives through its Culture Ireland Programme.For the first six months of 2013, to mark Ireland’s Presidency of the Council of the EU, an “extensive” programme called Culture Connects has been put in place, embracing all Member States and some significant third countries, Deenihan said. It will involve l more than 400 events taking place across all Member States of the European Union.The high profile events which have been launched include:‘Changing States’ in Brussels, an exhibition of 20 of Ireland’s strongest emerging visual artists and Francis Bacon in the high profile Beaux Arts GalleryAn exhibition of the work of Eileen Gray in Centre Pompidou, which is expected to be seen by around 500,000 visitorsExtensive theatre tours to sell-out houses, including ‘WATT’ at the Barbican in London and Brokentalkers ‘Blue Boy’ at various cities across EuropeAn exhibition of Irish craft and artwork involving cutting-edge technology is being presented in the Council Headquarters in Brussels for the duration of Ireland’s PresidencyDeenihan said that, January of this year, his Department supported a delegation of key theatre, dance and music practitioners to attend the Association of Performing Arts Presenters Conference (APAP) 2013, as part of an Irish Government trade and promotional mission for the performing arts.  ”This is a key target market for Irish artists and is of strategic importance in the development of US Irish cultural relations. Reports to date are very positive for future tour bookings for 2013/2014 for the Irish artists and delegates who were part of the delegation,” he said.The Culture Ireland programme also supports Irish artists in presenting their work at strategic international festivals, venues and showcases, and work on a cross-agency basis on key initiatives of joint interest. Over the St Patrick’s Day period will support more than 60 events across Europe, the US, China, Russia and Australia.Other activities to be supported this year through the Culture Ireland Programme include:WOMEX, the World Music Expo, in Cardiff in October – a partnership sharing showcasing and networking opportunities for Scotland, England, Wales and IrelandA showcase at the Edinburgh Festivals in August, displaying new theatre work being created in IrelandSupport, in partnership with the Arts Council, for Ireland’s participation in the 55th International Venice Art Biennale 2013last_img read more

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KBC Ireland committing to business in Ireland safeguarding 1000 jobs

first_img Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Short URL Image: Mark Stedman 9,573 Views Feb 9th 2017, 7:01 AM KBC BANK IRELAND has said it has no plans to move from Ireland after it reported a full year net profit of €227 million after tax.The bank, which hires over 1,000 people here, said it is committed to long-term investment in Ireland after increasing their profit €152 million in one year.In a statement this morning, the bank said it will “pursue a fully-fledged sustainable growth strategy based on implementation of a ‘digital first’ customer-centric strategy”.Speaking about the bank’s future in Ireland, KBC Ireland boss Wim Verbraeken said: “I am pleased to report on a very successful 2016 – sustaining and building on our return to profitability in 2015 and adding 70,000 new customer accounts.“I also welcome KBC Group’s decision to commit to the future of the Irish business and our customers here by making Ireland one of its core markets.Investment“Today’s announcement is fantastic news for customers and staff, and will result in more competition in Irish banking and better choice for customers. KBC has been here for over 40 years, we’ve invested heavily through the recent challenging period, built a strong and compelling retail bank, and are looking forward to becoming the main challenger bank here.”The bank employs over 1,000 people in Ireland with retail banking hubs in Dublin, Cork, Galway, Limerick, Kildare, Waterford, Wicklow and Kilkenny and plans to continue to create employment in Ireland.Read: ‘We’re very worried’: Locals react as HP Inc to shut with loss of 500 jobs >Read: ‘Letting agencies said that a landlord will never chose me in the rental lottery because I have kids’ > By Garreth MacNamee Share114 Tweet Email1 Image: Mark Stedman 28 Comments http://jrnl.ie/3230137 KBC Ireland committing to business in Ireland, safeguarding 1,000 jobs The company’s Irish profits increased by over €150 million in one year. Thursday 9 Feb 2017, 7:01 AMlast_img read more

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Washougal womans ordeal could help lead to change in state law

first_imgA Washougal woman who suffered a heart attack in August and was subsequently hit with nearly $227,000 in medical bills has had her debt erased.RaDonna Moehnke suffered a heart attack during a medical visit in Vancouver. She was taken to PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center and was later transferred to Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, where she underwent heart surgery.“I appreciate my surgeon,” Moehnke told The Columbian last month. “God bless his heart. He said I had one foot in the grave.”During her recovery, she developed a serious leg infection that prolonged her hospital stay. But the real shocker came after Moehnke returned home and learned that her insurer, Seattle-based Lifewise, would cover only a portion of her medical bills.“OHSU wasn’t in the network,” Moehnke said. “Well, excuse me. How in the hell was I supposed to know that?”“If I would have been given the option,” she said, “I would have said, ‘Pull the plug now.’ No ifs, ands or buts about it.”In December, Moehnke and her husband, Larry, filed a complaint with Washington Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler seeking relief from crushing medical bills that threatened to financially wipe out the couple.last_img read more

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Lenglet Dembele is not restless at Barcelona

first_imgBarcelona defender Clement Lenglet insists fellow Frenchman Ousmane Dembele remains fully committed to the clubThe Catalan giants signed Dembele in 2017 from Borussia Dortmund for a staggering €105m deal following a stunning season in the Bundesliga.However, life in Catalonia has not gone smoothly for Dembele with injury problems and a lack of opportunities spoiling his debut campaign.And things don’t appear to be improving for Dembele after failing to make manager Ernesto Valverde’s squad last Sunday, which saw Barcelona suffer a shock 4-3 home defeat to Real Betis.Valverde’s decision to omit Dembele came after his absence in a training session last week.The 21-year-old has only started two of his last five matches for Barcelona now, but Lenglet is certain there are no problems at Camp Nou.Sergio Ramos, Real MadridZidane reveals Sergio Ramos injury concern for Real Madrid Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Zinedine Zidane has put Sergio Ramos’ availability for Real Madrid’s trip to Sevilla next weekend in doubt after withdrawing him against Levante.“If Dembele looked serious in the stands I think that is understandable,” Lenglet told Goal on Dembele’s behaviour.“We were losing and if he started to laugh people would not understand that either.“I don’t think there is any problem with him, he was ill, he couldn’t make training and the coach chose another player.“These are things that happen at every club and we all have to pull in the same direction to reach our goals.”Barcelona will return to action on November 24 in a La Liga game away to third-place Atletico Madrid.last_img read more

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Kushner family puts brakes on talks to buy Miami Marlins

first_imgMIAMI (WSVN) – MIAMI (AP) — The Kushner family, which has close ties to the White House, has put the brakes on its negotiations to buy the Miami Marlins because of a report team owner Jeffrey Loria may be nominated by President Trump to become ambassador to France.Joshua Kushner, whose older brother is an adviser to the president, has a preliminary agreement to buy the Marlins. But in a statement released late Wednesday by Kushner’s brother-in-law, Joseph Meyer, the family expressed concern the sale might “complicate” the ambassadorship appointment.“Although the Kushners have made substantial progress in discussions for us to purchase the Marlins, recent reports suggest that Mr. Loria will soon be nominated by the president to be ambassador to France,” the statement said. “If that is true, we do not want this unrelated transaction to complicate that process and will not pursue it. The Kushners remain interested in purchasing a team and would love to buy the Marlins at another time.”The New York Post reported Wednesday that Loria, a New York art dealer, is likely to be the next French ambassador. The report named him as one of four people selected by White House chief of staff Reince Priebus for top diplomatic posts.Loria is a longtime major contributor to the Republican National Committee, which Priebus led until taking the job with Trump. Fundraising records show Loria gave $125,000 last fall jointly to the Trump campaign and RNC.It has long been a presidential tradition to reward generous political donors with plum ambassadorships.The statement from the Kushners was the first public confirmation of their negotiations with Loria. “Our family has been friends with Jeff Loria for over 30 years, been in business together, and even owned a Triple-A baseball team together,” the statement said. That team was in Oklahoma City.Joshua Kushner, 31, is a New York City businessman and investor and part of the real estate family that also includes Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law and adviser.The Marlins haven’t commented. Team president David Samson said he would speak Friday about the status of sale negotiations.Other parties are also interested in buying the Marlins, and Loria might reopen negotiations with them.Jared Kushner, who is married to Ivanka Trump, is not believed to part of the recent effort to the buy team. Neither is the Kushners’ father, Charles, who ran the family real estate firm until he went to prison for tax evasion, making illegal campaign contributions and witness intimidation.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

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Report BSO denied Coral Springs Fire Rescue entry into Marjory Stoneman Douglas

first_imgPARKLAND, FLA. (WSVN) – When Coral Springs Fire Rescue attempted to respond to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School during the Feb. 14 mass shooting, fire rescue said the Broward Sheriff’s Office did not allow them to enter.According to the Miami Herald, Coral Springs Fire Rescue Deputy Chief Michael McNally filed an incident report following the shooting which showed he asked six times for permission to send in police and paramedics. Jan Jordan, BSO’s captain in charge of the scene, reportedly denied their request.“The [BSO] incident commander advised me, ‘She would have to check,’” the Herald said McNally wrote in the report. “After several minutes, I requested once again the need to deploy RTF elements into the scene to … initiate treatment as soon as possible. Once again, the incident commander expressed that she ‘would have to check before approving this request.’”The Coral Springs Rescue Task Force would have sent in three paramedics and at least three officers, the Miami Herald reports.Once the Parkland shooter was arrested, BSO continued denying Coral Springs Fire Rescue’s request. Instead, SWAT medics reportedly went inside the building.“I’m not saying the [RTFs] would have made a difference, and I’m not saying they wouldn’t have made a difference, but it would have been more medics and more hands helping out,” said Coral Springs Fire Chief Frank Babinec in an interview.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

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Inmate Found Dead At Eagle River Womens Jail

first_imgA 24-year-old inmate at a women’s prison has been found dead in her cell.Download AudioThe Alaska Bureau of Investigations Major Crimes Unit announced today that the inmate was found dead last Thursday in her cell at Hiland Mountain Correctional Center in Eagle River.Correctional officers found Amanda Kernak unresponsive during a routine security check at 1:35 a.m.Authorities say no foul play is suspected, and the State Medical Examiner’s Office took custody of the body.A Department of Corrections spokeswoman says Alaska State Troopers are investigating Kernak’s death.last_img read more

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Sequoia Capital denies link with AircelMaxis case says ED searches were for

first_imgUpdateSequoia Capital has denied reports that the searches by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had anything to do with the Aircel-Maxis scam and that they pertained to the venture firm’s investments in Vasan Healthcare. “Sequoia Capital India first came to know of a regulatory investigation into Vasan Healthcare through a newspaper article on 17th Sept, 2015 and took a few prompt steps – VT Bharadwaj, a Managing Director of Sequoia Capital India Advisors Private Limited, who was Sequoia Capital India’s nominee on the Vasan Healthcare Board of Directors, demanded that management of Vasan Healthcare conduct a thorough investigation into the allegations. Subsequently, VT Bharadwaj resigned from the board of Vasan Healthcare on 18th November 2015,” the firm said in a statement. “Contrary to media reports, Sequoia Capital India has absolutely no association with companies like Aircel or Maxis. Our only connection to the ED visit is that Sequoia Capital India is a minority investor in Vasan, which is one out of the 100+ investments made in India over the last 10 years,” it added.Original storySequoia Capital’s offices in Bengaluru (Bangalore) were searched on Tuesday by the money-laundering investigation wing of the Indian finance ministry for alleged violation of foreign exchange norms. The venture capital firm allegedly misused India’s foreign direct investment (FDI) policy, CNN News 18 reported, citing sources.The Enforcement Directorate (ED) raided the firm’s Bengaluru offices on Monday also, according to a tweet by Sequoia India.The ED is also believed to have searched Westbridge Capital, a company linked to Karti Chidambaram, son of Congress politician and former finance minister P Chidambaram.Aircel is an Indian mobile network operator in which Malaysian mobile network company Maxis has a 74 percent stake.”In 2006, Aircel was acquired by Malaysia’s biggest integrated communications service provider Maxis (Maxis Communication Berhard) and is a joint venture with Sindya Securities & Investments Pvt Ltd- Maxis holds 74% equity in the company,” according to Aircel website.The acquisition of the stake by the Malaysian firm became a controversy after Aircel owner C. Sivasankaran complained with the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in April-May 2011 alleging he was forced to sell his stake to Maxis, the Hindu reported last year.Last August, the ED attached assets estimated at Rs. 742.58 crore of former Telecom Minister Dayanidhi Maran and his brother Kalanithi Maran and wife Kaveri Kalanithi in the Aircel-Maxis deal case. Dayanidhi Maran allegedly received “illegal gratification” from Maxis.The ED’s move to search Sequoia Capital’s Bengaluru offices has been criticised by former Infosys CFO Mohandas Pai, who also invests in start-ups through his firm Aarin Capital Partners. “My first thought is that may be ED should have issued a notice and asked for information from Sequoia instead of going for a raid,” he told CNBC-TV18.2/3:Sequoia has adopted a policy of full compliance with that investigation & has dutifully responded to governmental inquiries recd to date— Sequoia_India (@Sequoia_India) April 19, 2016last_img read more

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Suu Kyi woos investors to crisishit Rakhine

first_imgAung San Suu Kyi. Photo: AFPMyanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi called for investment in the crisis-hit western state of Rakhine on Friday, saying the world had “focused narrowly on negative aspects” in the state from which some 730,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled since 2017.On a rare visit to Rakhine, Suu Kyi emphasised responsible business practices as she addressed an investment fair sponsored by Japan in the coastal state’s tourist hotspot of Ngapali beach.She made only a brief reference to the violence that have roiled areas several hundred kilometres to the north, including a fresh conflict with Rakhine rebels that has displaced more than 5,000 since December.”For too long the international community’s attention has been focused narrowly on negative aspects related to problems in north Rakhine rather than on the panoramic picture that shows the immense potential of this state for peace and prosperity,” Suu Kyi said.Her government recognised the “grave challenges” it faced in Rakhine and was doing its utmost to address them, she said.The 1991 Nobel laureate has pledged to make Myanmar more investment-friendly as her government attempts to reverse a drop in foreign investment and tourism from the West since the Rohingya exodus sparked global outrage.Myanmar officials will also brief investors in London next month at a trade and investment conference organised by the British Chamber of Commerce in Myanmar.A UN fact-finding mission last year said the 2017 military campaign that pushed out the Rohingya was orchestrated with “genocidal intent”. Myanmar denies allegations of mass killings and rape, and says its offensive was a legitimate response to an insurgent threat and that it is welcoming the refugees back.’RESPONSIBLE INVESTMENT’Some experts warn that a focus on economic solutions to Rakhine’s problems could cement the marginalisation of the mostly stateless Rohingya.A Reuters special report in December revealed that officials had built new homes for Buddhists where the Rohingya once lived, making the return of many refugees to their original homes impossible.Myanmar says it has been ready to accept returning refugees since January and denies discriminating against Muslims who remain in Rakhine.Domestic and foreign investment could play a crucial role in the state, Suu Kyi said, but she warned against irresponsible investment like “unchecked expansion of commercial fishery projects” that could damage Rakhine’s coastal mangrove forests.Despite one session on “responsible investment” in Rakhine, the conflicts in the state were barely mentioned at the event, held at a brand new high-end hotel overlooking the Bay of Bengal.As well as those stuck in Bangladesh, hundreds of thousands of Rohingya and other Muslims remain trapped in camps and villages in Rakhine, where their movements and access to services are restricted.Asked about the lack of discussion of Rakhine’s crises, Aung Naing Oo, director-general of Myanmar’s Directorate of Investment and Company Administration, said the fair was not the place to discuss politics.“Investment is not political,” he said, adding that Myanmar’s laws would guarantee that projects agreed at the event would benefit all the state’s people, including by creating employment.The venue, in Thandwe township, was within miles of villages that saw communal clashes in 2013 between Rakhine Buddhists and Muslims from the Kaman ethnic group.Locals from both communities say they now co-exist peacefully. But Kaman Muslims, who unlike the Rohingya are recognised as Myanmar citizens, say they still face movement restrictions and discrimination.Aung Naing Myint, a Kaman community leader, said he had not heard about the investment fair until reporters contacted him about it. “We welcome this event and investment,” he said, “but the question is, can the local communities get some benefit from it?”BREAK WITH THE WESTThe investment fair began on Thursday evening with musical performances celebrating ancient kingdoms in the region and a purported visit by the Gautama Buddha, who lived two and half millennia ago. A pop song written especially for the event described the state as “the door for international relation(s)”.Most investors came from Japan, South Korea and elsewhere in Asia, reflecting a chill in Myanmar’s relations with the West since the Rohingya exodus.One company displayed its plans to construct a high-speed railway and eight-lane highway across Myanmar to China. A company official said the project, which would draw on funding from China, did not yet have official approval.Belgian national Pascal Gerken, who is developing a high-end resort near Ngapali that he says will train and employ around 400 locals, was one of a handful of Western investors in attendance.He told Reuters projects like his in the state would benefit “all communities of all religions” and promote understanding.Rakhine native Htun Htun Naing’s Yangon-based company, Blue Ocean Investments, runs call centres and other IT services. He said Western firms would lose out to Asian competitors if they withheld investment from Rakhine due to reputational risks.“We wish they wanted to come,” he said, “but if they don’t come, we’ll still find an alternative way to develop our country by ourselves.”last_img read more

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Trump Kim Converge On Singapore Ahead Of HighStakes Summit

first_img Share Photo via Reuters.FILE PHOTO: A combination photo shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (L) in Pyongyang, North Korea and U.S. President Donald Trump (R), in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S., respectively from Reuters files.President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un converged on this island city-state Sunday ahead of one of the most unusual and highly anticipated summits in recent world history, a sit-down meant to settle a standoff over Pyongyang’s nuclear arsenal.Trump descended from Air Force One into the steamy Singapore night, greeting officials and declaring he felt “very good,” before he was whisked away to his hotel, driving along a route lined with police and photo-snapping onlookers. Trump traveled to Singapore from Canada, where he met with other world leaders whose countries make up the Group of Seven.Hours earlier, a jet carrying Kim landed. After shaking hands with the Singapore foreign minister, Kim sped through the streets in a limousine, two large North Korean flags fluttering on the hood, surrounded by other black vehicles with tinted windows and bound for the luxurious and closely guarded St. Regis Hotel.He and Trump are set to meet Tuesday morning in the first summit of its kind between a leader of North Korea and a sitting U.S. president. The North has faced crippling diplomatic and economic sanctions as it has advanced development of its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.Kim smiled broadly Sunday evening as he met with Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.“The entire world is watching the historic summit between (North Korea) and the United States of America, and thanks to your sincere efforts … we were able to complete the preparations for the historic summit,” Kim told Lee through an interpreter.Trump is set to meet with Lee on Monday.Trump has said he hopes to make a legacy-defining deal for the North to give up its nuclear weapons, though he has recently sought to manage expectations, saying that it may take more than one meeting.The North, many experts believe, stands on the brink of being able to target the entire U.S. mainland with its nuclear-armed missiles, and while there’s deep skepticism that Kim will quickly give up those hard-won nukes, there’s also some hope that diplomacy can replace the animosity between the U.S. and the North.U.S. and North Korean officials are set to meet Monday morning in Singapore to make final preparations for Tuesday’s meeting. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Sung Kim, the U.S. ambassador to the Philippines who has taken the lead on policy negotiations with the North, will hold a “working group” with a North Korean delegation.The North Korean autocrat’s every move will be followed by 3,000 journalists who have converged on Singapore, and by gawkers around the world, up until he shakes hands with Trump on Tuesday. It’s a reflection of the intense global curiosity over Kim’s sudden turn to diplomacy in recent months after a slew of North Korean nuclear and missile tests last year raised serious fears of war.Part of the interest in Tuesday’s summit is simply because Kim has had limited appearances on the world stage. He has only publicly left his country three times since taking power after his father’s death in late 2011 — traveling twice to China and once across his shared border with the South to the southern part of the Demilitarized Zone in recent summits with the leaders of China and South Korea, respectively.But it’s Kim’s pursuit of nuclear weapons that gives his meeting with Trump such high stakes. The meeting was initially meant to rid North Korea of its nuclear weapons, but the talks have been portrayed by Trump in recent days more as a get-to-know-you session. Trump has also raised the possibility of further summits and an agreement ending the Korean War by replacing the armistice signed in 1953 with a peace treaty. China and South Korea would have to sign off on any legal treaty.It’s unclear what Trump and Kim might decide Tuesday.Pyongyang has said it is willing to deal away its entire nuclear arsenal if the United States provides it with reliable security assurances and other benefits. But many say this is highly unlikely, given how hard it has been for Kim to build his program and given that the weapons are seen as the major guarantee to his holding onto unchecked power.Any nuclear deal will hinge on North Korea’s willingness to allow unfettered outside inspections of the country’s warheads and nuclear fuel, much of which is likely kept in a vast complex of underground facilities. Past nuclear deals have crumbled over North Korea’s reluctance to open its doors to outsiders.Another possibility from the summit is a deal to end the Korean War, which North Korea has long demanded, presumably, in part, to get U.S. troops off the Korean Peninsula and, eventually, pave the way for a North Korean-led unified Korea.The fighting ended on July 27, 1953, but the war technically continues today because instead of a difficult-to-negotiate peace treaty, military officers for the U.S.-led United Nations, North Korea and China signed an armistice that halted the fighting. The North may see a treaty — and its presumed safety assurances from Washington — as its best way of preserving the Kim family dynasty. The ensuing recognition as a “normal country” could then allow sanctions relief, and later international aid and investment.Just meeting with Trump will also give Kim a recognition North Korea has long sought, setting him up as global player and the leader of a country worthy of respect.last_img read more

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