Montreal passenger rights advocate loses legal round in court battle against United

first_imgMONTREAL – A Montreal passenger rights advocate has lost a legal round in a 20-year-old dispute with United Airlines.Jeremy Cooperstock said the Federal Court of Canada has ruled that his website Untied.com infringed on the American airline’s trademarks and copyright.He issued a brief statement Friday saying he strongly disagrees with the ruling and plans to appeal.“I find it difficult to understand how someone could confuse my parody of Untied Airlines’ conduct against its passengers with the services of an airline,” he said in an email.Cooperstock said he can’t understand how anyone could think his website, which parodies United’s conduct against its passengers, is a United website.The airline giant issued a statement Friday saying its pleased with the decision.“We have always maintained that Mr. Cooperstock should be able to voice his opinions, and our case was to protect United customers and avoid confusion by asking him to not use our intellectual property on his website and related channels,” the airline said in an emailed statement.United also sued Cooperstock in the Quebec courts in 2012, alleging Untied.com resulted in the protracted harassment of employees by disgruntled passengers.A lawyer for United testified in a separate action in Quebec Superior Court last year that the airline doesn’t object to Cooperstock’s right to run the website or complain about its performance.However the airline demanded Cooperstock remove employee contact information he posted on the website.A posting on Cooperstock’s website said the superior court ruled in favour of United and the province’s appeal court dismissed his challenge of the ruling.Cooperstock’s fight with the airline began from a string of minor incidents dating back to 1996, after which he set up the website a year later.last_img read more

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Fiat Seaworld rise Meredith Kraft Heinz slip

NEW YORK — Stocks that moved substantially or traded heavily on Tuesday:Total System Services Inc., up $5.39 to $118.84The payments processing company is being bought by Global Payments in an all-stock deal valued at $21.5 billion.Anaplan Inc., up $6.76 to $43.87The software developer’s first quarter profit and revenue beat Wall Street forecasts and it gave investors a solid outlook for the year.Seaworld Entertainment Inc., up $4.52 to $31.77The theme park operator is buying back stock and announced increased investment from a hedge fund.Meredith Corp., down $2.14 to $52.57The publisher sold its Sports Illustrated brand to Authentic Brands for $110 million.Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV, up 93 cents to $13.78The carmaker is proposing a merger with France’s Renault to create the world’s third-biggest automaker.Advanced Micro Devices Inc., up $2.59 to $29.03The chipmaker announced the release of several new computing and graphics products for video games.Momo Inc., up $1.29 to $27.31The Chinese social media company reported strong first quarter financial results and issued a solid forecast.Kraft Heinz Co., down $2.05 to $29.06The food maker and other consumer staples companies lagged the market as investors shifted to more risk-heavy holdings.The Associated Press read more

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Security Council welcomes recent initiatives to support Afghanistan

17 July 2007Condemning recent attacks against civilians in Afghanistan, the Security Council today affirmed its support for recent initiatives aimed at enhancing security, stability and development in the war-torn nation. In a statement read out by Ambassador Wang Guangya of China, which holds the Council’s rotating presidency this month, the 15-member body referred to a recent rule of law conference held in Rome as well as Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s visit to Kabul, saying these developments “reinforce the progress made in pursuing a comprehensive approach to the security, governance and development of Afghanistan.”The Council’s action followed a briefing from Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Hédi Annabi on recent developments on the ground, as well as the Rome conference.In today’s statement, the Council also reiterated its support for the continuing endeavours by the Afghan Government, with the assistance of the international community, to further improve the security situation and to continue to address the threat posed by the Taliban, Al-Qaida and other extremist groups.In addition, Council members condemned “in the strongest terms” all suicide attacks against civilians and Afghan and international forces and their destabilizing effects on the country’s security and stability, as well as the use by the Taliban and other extremist groups of civilians as human shields. Expressing its concern about all civilian casualties, the Council reiterated its call “for all feasible steps to be taken to ensure the protection of civilian life and for international humanitarian and human rights law to be upheld.” read more

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New allegation of sexual exploitation received by UN mission in Central African

The latest allegation follows 15 other possible cases of sexual exploitation and abuse by personnel of the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in CAR (MINUSCA) that are currently under investigation. “MINUSCA has informed the country’s authorities of this allegation,” UN spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric told reporters. “The United Nations Office of Internal Oversight Services has immediately taken steps to investigate this case, consistent with the Secretary-General’s zero-tolerance policy on sexual exploitation and abuse.”He also reiterated that MINUSCA condemns in the strongest possible terms any instance of sexual exploitation and abuse committed by UN personnel in CAR.Meanwhile, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative and head of MINUSCA, Parfait Onanga-Anyanga, has discussed this new case with both the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, and the Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Hervé Ladsous. “[Mr. Onanga-Anyanga] reiterates his personal and institutional commitment to ensure that the rights and dignity of victims are protected, an investigation is carried out swiftly, and that justice is done,” Mr. Dujarric added. Also from CAR, the UN Humanitarian Coordinator in the country, Aurélien Agbénonci, today said he is alarmed by the recent eviction of 114 people from the Saint Jean Gabaladja displacement site in the capital, Bangui.According to the UN, they have been temporarily moved to Benzvi displacement site, where they have been provided with support to resettle.“The Humanitarian Coordinator says he was concerned the evictions could signal the start of a wave of forced movements, with nine displacement sites hosting 2,700 people currently under threat of eviction,” Mr. Dujarric noted. “He said that any movement of displaced populations must be based on a voluntary decision by the concerned people, ensuring best safety conditions and [respecting] the dignity of people affected, following the rules and principles of international humanitarian law and the Kampala Convention.”There are 31 displacement sites in Bangui alone hosting over 27,300 people, and the UN estimates that some 368,000 people are also internally displaced. read more

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Why The Warriors And Cavs Are Still Big Favorites

1959-60Boston Celtics1,1051of8 1995-96Chicago Bulls2,0691of29 1984-85Los Angeles Lakers2,0332of23 1966-67Philadelphia 76ers1,0843of10 Los Angeles Lakers-2.8-3.4-0.6– 2014-15Golden State Warriors72915of30 1952-53Minneapolis Lakers8521of10 2001-02Los Angeles Lakers1,8303of29 2011-12Miami Heat1,7255of30 1982-83Philadelphia 76ers1,7781of23 2012-13Miami Heat2,7782of30 2008-09Los Angeles Lakers1,9763of30 1989-90Detroit Pistons1,8343of27 2005-06Miami Heat1,9103of30 Golden State Warriors+9.1+10.8+1.7– Los Angeles Clippers+2.2+2.1-0.1– Sacramento Kings-5.7-5.8-0.1– 1955-56Philadelphia Warriors598of8 2006-07San Antonio Spurs2,3631of30 1988-89Detroit Pistons1,4913of25 Brooklyn Nets-4.4-5.0-0.6– Show more rows* Average number of career playoff minutes, weighted by each player’s share of regular season minutes played.Source: BASKETBALL-REFERENCE.COM 1951-52Minneapolis Lakers4922of10 Charlotte Hornets+1.4+1.4-0.1– Memphis Grizzlies-1.9-2.0-0.1– 1965-66Boston Celtics1,7141of9 1991-92Chicago Bulls1,6844of27 Philadelphia 76ers-0.7-1.3-0.6– SEASONCHAMPIONSAVG. PLAYOFF EXPERIENCE*LEAGUE RANK 1994-95Houston Rockets1,3925of27 1954-55Syracuse Nationals6783of9 1996-97Chicago Bulls2,6181of29 1987-88Los Angeles Lakers2,8442of23 1998-99San Antonio Spurs1,4596of29 1985-86Boston Celtics2,2043of23 1981-82Los Angeles Lakers1,4363of23 1983-84Boston Celtics1,3813of23 New York Knicks-4.2-4.7-0.5– 1993-94Houston Rockets78312of27 Minnesota Timberwolves+3.4+3.3-0.1– 1957-58St. Louis Hawks9881of8 You might be wondering if we’re confusing cause and effect. For instance, Michael Jordan and the 1990s Chicago Bulls were really great; as a result of being great, they made deep playoff runs every year and won six NBA titles, accumulating lots of playoff experience along the way. Playoff success causes playoff experience and not the other way around, you might say.We’ve found, however, that there’s predictive power in accounting for playoff experience above and beyond other measures of team quality. In particular, playoff experience provides information beyond a team’s Elo rating, which accounts for its record, strength of schedule, and margin of victory or defeat in recent games. In the NBA postseason since 1980, the team with the higher initial Elo rating has won 74 percent of playoff series. But if a team has both a higher Elo rating and much more playoff experience,4A difference of at least 1,000 average lifetime playoff minutes played. that win percentage shoots up to 86 percent. Conversely, teams with the higher Elo rating but much less playoff experience have won just 52 percent of playoff series. These differences are highly statistically and practically significant.Based on past research on the topic, we were expecting to see teams reap some benefit from playoff experience, but we were surprised that the effect was this strong. What we’re less sure of is why this effect exists. Playoff basketball is a different beast than regular-season basketball, with much tighter defensive play, among other stylistic changes. It may simply be that nothing predicts playoff success quite like past playoff success. Or it may be that some players really are “clutch” — or can learn to be clutch with experience — and have the psychological skills to thrive under postseason pressure. It’s also possible that teams like LeBron James’s Cavs aren’t overachieving in the playoffs so much as they’re underachieving — or pacing themselves — in the regular season. The NBA season is exhausting, so it’s probably a good idea to pace yourself if your goal is to maximize your chance of a deep playoff run rather than to accumulate gaudy regular-season statistics.All we know for sure is that playoff basketball is different from regular-season basketball — different enough that it makes sense to maintain what amounts to two sets of ratings for each team, one for the playoffs and one for the regular season. And that’s essentially what our new system does: It keeps two sets of ratings. Below, you’ll find each team’s projected margin of victory or defeat against a league-average opponent in the regular season and the playoffs, respectively.5These margins of victory differ slightly from the average projected point differential on the “CARM-Elo” interactive graphic because those “CARM-Elo” point differentials account for the strength of a team’s schedule, whereas my calculations for this article do not. Note that the most experienced teams, like the Cavaliers, project to be 2 or even 3 points better per game in the playoffs than in the regular season, which is similar to the magnitude of home-court advantage in the NBA. So when an experienced team plays an inexperienced team in the playoffs, it has the equivalent of home-court advantage — more experienced teams don’t always win by any means, but the breaks tend to go their way. 2010-11Dallas Mavericks2,1534of30 1980-81Boston Celtics35913of23 1975-76Boston Celtics2,0881of18 2015-16Cleveland Cavaliers1,9072of30 1973-74Boston Celtics1,5662of17 2004-05San Antonio Spurs1,4811of30 NBA champs almost always have a lot of playoff experience 1967-68Boston Celtics2,2451of12 1990-91Chicago Bulls1,2456of27 1960-61Boston Celtics1,3791of8 2007-08Boston Celtics86610of30 2009-10Los Angeles Lakers2,5091of30 Milwaukee Bucks+0.8+0.4-0.4– Atlanta Hawks-5.8-6.3-0.5– Portland Trail Blazers+0.3+0.0-0.3– Indiana Pacers-3.5-3.9-0.3– Orlando Magic-1.7-2.3-0.6– 1992-93Chicago Bulls2,1342of27 Detroit Pistons-2.8-3.3-0.6– Cavs are boosted most by accounting for playoff experience 1999-2000Los Angeles Lakers1,7295of29 1986-87Los Angeles Lakers2,4962of23 1971-72Los Angeles Lakers2,4711of17 Oklahoma City Thunder+5.2+6.0+0.8– 1953-54Minneapolis Lakers1,0621of9 2003-04Detroit Pistons71513of29 2002-03San Antonio Spurs1,1956of29 Denver Nuggets+2.5+2.2-0.4– EXPECTED MARGIN OF VICTORY AGAINST A LEAGUE-AVERAGE TEAM 1970-71Milwaukee Bucks6267of17 1969-70New York Knicks6496of14 Boston Celtics+1.6+1.7+0.1– Phoenix Suns-3.5-4.1-0.6– Cleveland Cavaliers+5.0+7.6+2.6– 1976-77Portland Trail Blazers15222of22 Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: The Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers are favorites to win their respective conferences and reach the NBA Finals.That’s according to FiveThirtyEight’s “CARM-Elo” projections, which we’ve just launched for the 2017-18 NBA season. The Warriors and Cavs project to be the best regular-season teams in their respective conferences, although the Houston Rockets and the Oklahoma City Thunder — and perhaps the San Antonio Spurs — could represent formidable rivals for the Warriors in the West. Cleveland has less competition in the East. (Our projections are bearish on the Boston Celtics.) But Cleveland and Golden State could have an even larger advantage in the postseason.Apart from one new wrinkle, our methodology for making these projections is essentially the same as it has been for the past two seasons. So I’ll spend the bulk of time here discussing what has changed. The new wrinkle: Our forecasts account for the amount of playoff experience on each team’s roster. Throughout NBA history, teams with extensive playoff experience have often found a higher “gear” in the playoffs. Put more precisely, they have a tendency to win more playoff games than you’d expect from their regular-season performance. This group of teams includes the Cavs, a team that our forecasts have often underrated once the playoffs began — and that won 12 of its first 13 playoff games last year after a mediocre regular season.Indeed, it’s extremely rare for teams without at least an average amount of playoff experience to win the NBA title. We calculate a team’s playoff experience by averaging the number1Only playoff games from previous seasons count toward the calculation; we don’t give a player credit for the experience he’s accumulating in the current season’s playoffs until the next season. of career playoff minutes played2Minutes played aren’t available before the 1951-52 NBA season; for the earlier seasons, we estimate the number of minutes played based on the number of playoff games played. for each player on its roster, weighted by the number of minutes the player played for the team in the regular season.3For our 2017-18 projections, we use projected minutes based on our depth charts. (Teams don’t get any credit for signing a playoff-experienced veteran if they never play him.) For instance, last season’s NBA champions, the Warriors, entered the playoffs with a weighted average of 1,966 career playoff minutes, which ranked third in the league after Cleveland and San Antonio. By contrast, the Portland Trail Blazers — the Warriors’ first-round opponents — averaged just 493 minutes of playoff experience.Each of the past 36 NBA champions have ranked in the top half of their respective leagues in playoff experience. So have 62 out of the past 66 champions; the lone exceptions were the 1980-81 and 1956-57 Boston Celtics, the 1976-77 Portland Trail Blazers and the 1955-56 Philadelphia Warriors. San Antonio Spurs+3.5+5.1+1.6– TEAMREG. SEASONPLAYOFFSPLAYOFF EXPERIENCE BONUS 1997-98Chicago Bulls2,7521of29 Houston Rockets+6.2+7.0+0.8– 2000-01Los Angeles Lakers2,2583of29 2013-14San Antonio Spurs2,4362of30 1977-78Washington Bullets1,3832of22 Washington Wizards+1.5+1.5+0.0 1958-59Boston Celtics8492of8 Chicago Bulls-5.1-5.8-0.7– Toronto Raptors+1.0+1.1+0.2– Utah Jazz+1.9+1.7-0.2– Miami Heat-0.8-1.3-0.5– 1972-73New York Knicks1,8092of17 1962-63Boston Celtics1,6891of9 1963-64Boston Celtics1,6371of9 Dallas Mavericks-3.6-3.3+0.3– 1974-75Golden State Warriors5989of18 2016-17Golden State Warriors1,9663of30 Finally, just some general background on these projections. We call these “CARM-Elo” forecasts because they combine our CARMELO projections for individual players, which are used to set the initial ratings for each team, with our Elo-rating based method of simulating out the rest of the season. As part of this process, we’ve built depth charts for each team to estimate playing time over the course of the regular season. There is unavoidably some guesswork involved in creating the depth charts, which reflect a rough consensus of depth charts from RosterResource.com, ESPN.com and CBS Sports and account for injuries. However, CARMELO projects an expected amount of playing time for each player, and when building our depth charts, we usually stick fairly closely to this recommendation for a team’s rotation players. In fact, our model punishes players who are “forced” to play substantially more than their CARMELO-forecasted playing time by lowering their efficiency rating. For example, Doug McDermott of the New York Knicks is projected to play 20 minutes per game in our depth charts when CARMELO recommends that he only plays 15 minutes per game, so our forecast assumes that he’ll become somewhat less efficient as a result.Our CARMELO projections themselves underwent some changes earlier this year, which you can read about here. In particular, we’ve switched back to a system that rates players based on a combination of Real Plus-Minus and Box Plus/Minus instead of solely using BPM, as we did last year. Both RPM and BPM have their weaknesses, though: Neither is especially accurate at accounting for defense; both can struggle with players with extremely high usage rates (say, Russell Westbrook or DeMar DeRozan); and they don’t take much advantage of the NBA’s new wealth of player-tracking data. If it sounds like I have strong opinions about this stuff, it’s because I do; we’re working on our own player-rating metric, which we hope to unveil in the relatively near future.In the meantime, good luck to the 28 NBA teams hoping to knock off the Warriors and the Cavs. It’s never easy, and it won’t be easy this year, especially once the playoffs come around. 1956-57Boston Celtics5655of8 New Orleans Pelicans+1.1+0.9-0.2– 1979-80Los Angeles Lakers1,0785of22 1961-62Boston Celtics1,3941of9 1968-69Boston Celtics2,8051of14 1964-65Boston Celtics1,7071of9 Overall, the Warriors — who have the second-most playoff experience after the Cavs — have a 38 percent chance of repeating as NBA champions, according to our projections. If you’re not sure whether that is low or high, consider that the New England Patriots had only an 18 percent chance of repeating as Super Bowl champions at the start of this year’s NFL season, according to our NFL Elo projections. But 38 percent is somewhat lower than where Vegas odds have the Warriors, which imply more like a 45 percent or 50 percent chance that they’ll repeat.6The combined probability of the 30 NBA teams winning the NBA title is 132 percent, according to the odds listed at VegasInsider.com. Obviously, this can’t be right — the odds must add up to 100 percent exactly — but the inflated numbers reflect the house’s cut. The Warriors’ probability of repeating is 62 percent taken at face value but falls to 47 percent once you correct for this. The competition is a bit deeper this year, and the Warriors are no longer a young team. Still, the playoff bonus helps them — without it, their chances would be 34 percent.The pecking order behind the Warriors changes as a result of the playoff adjustment. In the playoff version of our ratings, there’s a fairly clear second tier after Golden State that consists of the Cavs, Rockets, Thunder and Spurs. The Cavaliers, who benefit from playing in the Eastern Conference, have the easiest path of this group, with a 21 percent chance of winning the title. (Without the playoff bonus, the Cavs’ chances would be 13 percent.)After that, there’s a pretty big gap before you get to anyone else. Teams such as the Minnesota Timberwolves might not be that far behind teams like the Spurs and even the Cavs in the regular season. But because of their relative inexperience, they’re less likely to take advantage of their playoff opportunity and make a deep postseason run. 1978-79Seattle Super Sonics9977of22 read more

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The Falls Mark E Smith dies aged 60

first_imgThe singer’s health was known to be deterioratingCredit:Ebet Roberts/Redferns The singer's health was known to be deteriorating  The prolific singer’s final performance was at the Queen Margaret Union in Glasgow, where he sang from his wheelchair with his right arm in a sling.Many in the industry have paid tribute to the singer-songwriter, with Lauren Laverne tweeting: “Oh man. Mark E Smith. One of my biggest heroes. Had a nightmare interviewing him (of course) but then he put me in a song. So sharp, clever and untouchably cool. Thanks for the music, MES.” Explaining that it didn’t matter who else he was playing alongside, he once said: “If it’s me and yer granny on bongos, it’s The Fall.” Lead singer of The Fall, Mark E Smith has died aged 60. The musician died at home on Wednesday morning, according to Pam Van Damned – Smith’s partner and manager of the band.In a statement Wednesday evening she said: “It is with deep regret that we announce the passing of Mark E Smith. He passed this morning at home.”A more detailed statement will follow in the next few days. In the meantime, Pam & Mark’s family request privacy at this sad time.”Last year the band were forced to cancel a string of shows due to the founding member’s poor health.  So so sad to hear that we’ve lost Mark E Smith. A true uncompromising musical maverick. A genius, a curmudgeon and someone whose company it was an honour to share. So long M.E.S x x x pic.twitter.com/aZFGNXZuRW— Tim Burgess (@Tim_Burgess) January 24, 2018 Oh man. Mark E Smith. One of my biggest heroes. Had a nightmare interviewing him (of course) but then he put me in a song. So sharp, clever and untouchably cool. Thanks for the music, MES.— Lauren Laverne (@laurenlaverne) January 24, 2018 Described by many, including Tim Burgess of The Charlaten’s as ‘a genius’, the temperamental frontman led The Fall for four decades, citing dozens of writers and poets as influential to his lyrics.  In that time, the singer hired and fired more than 60 musicians from the band, and released 30 albums that defined the post-punk genre. last_img read more

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Updated Brother of Oscar Pistorius charged with culpable homicide

first_imgUpdated 13:50THE OLDER BROTHER of South African star athlete Oscar Pistorius has been charged with culpable homicide over a car accident in 2010, according to reports in South Africa’s local media.Carl Pistorius allegedly killed a female motorcyclist while driving outside Johannesburg, the eNews Africa television channel and radio station Eyewitness News reported, citing his lawyer Kenny Oldwage.His trial had been due to start last Thursday, a day before his famous brother, an Olympic and Paralympic hero, was granted bail on a charge of murder over the Valentine’s Day killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.Carl Pistorius’s trial was pushed back a month, but the specific date is not known.He had been in court in Pretoria last week with his sister Aimee and father Henke to support his brother.The 28-year-old Carl “deeply regrets” the incident, the family said. “It was a tragic road accident after the deceased collided with Carl’s car.”He had no alcohol in his blood at the time of the accident, according to tests, the family added.Oscar Pistorius, the 26-year-old double amputee athlete known as “Blade Runner” was released on bail on Friday. He is due back in court on 4 June.He says the shooting of his 29-year-old model girlfriend was an accident and that he mistook her for a burglar.Comments are disabled as legal proceedings are active.- © AFP, 2013Read: Father of Reeva Steenkamp says Pistorius will ‘suffer’ if he’s lying >last_img read more

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Amnesty accuses Israeli army of deliberate attacks on Gaza health workers

first_img A Palestinian medic shows the cover of a Red Crescent ambulance destroyed by an Israeli strike Source: AP/Press Association Images Dr. Afif Quneibi, a Palestinian orthopaedic specialist from the West Bank city of Hebron, inspects the damage to a patient room at the Al Aqsa Martyrs hospital, caused by Israeli strikes Source: AP/Press Association ImagesHe continued: Jaber Khalil Abu Rumileh supervises ambulance services in the Al-Aqsa Martyrs hospital. He told Amnesty International of a shelling attack on the medical facility on 21 July that lasted for half an hour.It was 3pm and I was working in the emergency unit. I heard bombing that shook the hospital. It was a shelling that had hit the fourth floor, the pregnancy and caesarean unit. Then there were a few more hits. People were terrified, patients ran out, doctors could not enter to help the injured and remove the dead. Then the third floor was hit and four people were killed. I saw one women come running with the child she just gave birth to. Some women gave birth during the shelling.Mohammad Abu Jumiza is partially deaf after suffering head injuries during an attack that took place while he was transferring injured people in his ambulance in Khan Younis on 24 July.We were on our way back to Nasser hospital, driving with the lights and sirens on as always. The ambulance was clearly marked as such. The doctor, nurse and I were all wearing medical uniforms. When we reached the Islamic University I heard an explosion right next to us and the front and back windows of the car fell out. As I was turning another missile hit next to us, and then a third one. When the fourth missile hit, I lost control and we crashed, so we ran out of the car and found shelter in a building. Then there were two more missiles fired and some people were injured.Dr Bashar Murad, director of Palestinian Red Crescent Society’s (PRCS) emergency and ambulance unit, said that since the conflict started at least two PRCS ambulance workers had been killed. He said that at least 35 had been injured and 17 health vehicles had been left out of service after alleged attacks by the Israeli army.He said the PRCS ambulances “are often targeted although they are clearly marked and display all signs that they are ambulances”.The army should be able to distinguish from the air that what they targeting are ambulance.Amnesty also said that ambulance worker Mohammad Al-Abadlah was killed on 25 July.He was in Qarara to help an injured person when he was shot in the hip and chest with gunfire and bled to death. Mohammad was travelling in a visibly marked ambulance and was wearing his medical uniform. Colleagues who approached him to help him were also shot at but were not injured.Hospitals across the Gaza Strip are also suffering from fuel and power shortages, inadequate water supply, and shortages of essential drugs and medical equipment, said Amnesty.The IDF has not yet commented on the allegations, and an email to its official email address bounced back.Read: Israel and Hamas appear at odds over prolonging ceasefire> Even more alarming is the mounting evidence that the Israeli army has targeted health facilities or professionals. Such attacks are absolutely prohibited by international law and would amount to war crimes. They only add to the already compelling argument that the situation should be referred to the International Criminal Court.Amnesty stated that hospitals, doctors and ambulance staff, including those trying to evacuate people injured in Israeli attacks, have come under increased fire since 17 July.Some medical teams have even been prevented from reaching critical areas altogether, leaving hundreds of injured civilians without access to life-saving help and entire families without assistance in removing the bodies of their loved ones.Health worker testimonies AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL IS accusing the Israeli army of making “deliberate” attacks on Gaza health workers.It made the accusations this morning while calling for an immediate investigation into “mounting evidence that the Israel Defence Forces launched apparently deliberate attacks against hospitals and health professionals in Gaza, which have left six medics dead”.“Grim reality” of life in GazaAmnesty has released what it describes as “disturbing” testimonies from doctors, nurses, and ambulance personnel working in the area about the alleged attacks.Colm O’Gorman, Executive Director at Amnesty International Ireland, said that the “harrowing descriptions” by ambulance drivers and other medics “reveal the grim reality of life in Gaza”.last_img read more

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CO2 la justice confirme la légalité du système déchange de quotas

first_imgCO2 : la justice confirme la légalité du système d’échange de quotas L’Union européenne est sur le point de remporter une bataille contre les compagnies aériennes, qui contestent la mise en place d’un système d’échange de quotas les contraignant à payer pour les émissions de CO2 de leurs avions. L’avocate générale de la Cour européenne de justice a estimé que cette mesure était conforme au droit international.”L’intégration des activités aériennes internationales dans le système UE d’échange de quotas d’émission est compatible avec les dispositions et principes de droit international”, a estimé l’avocate générale de la Cour européenne de justice (CEJ), Juliane Kokott. Comme le souligne l’AFP, les juges ne sont pas contraints de suivre cet avis. Mais dans la grande majorité des cas, 80% environ, leurs arrêts sont en accord avec les conclusions de l’avocat général.À lire aussiTop 10 des avions militaires les plus chersConnie Hedegaard, la commissaire européenne chargée du Climat, a rapidement réagi à la publication de cette recommandation, qu’elle salue. “Je suis heureuse de voir que l’opinion de l’avocat général juge la directive de l’UE entièrement compatible avec le droit international”, s’est-elle réjouie avant de promettre d’aider les compagnies aériennes à s’adapter au système d’échange de quotas. Mais alors que les défenseurs de l’environnement se félicitent eux aussi de l’avis rendu par Juliane Kokott, les compagnies aériennes pourraient en ultime recours décider de saisir l’Organisation mondiale du commerce (OMC). Le système de quotas contraindra toutes les compagnies aériennes qui entreront et sortiront du territoire de l’UE à payer pour l’équivalent de 15% de leurs émissions de CO2. Une mesure qui devrait leur coûter quelque 380 millions d’euros en 2012. Puis la facture augmentera de 3% l’année suivante, puisque le quota d’émissions attribué gratuitement passera de 85% à 82%. Connie Hedegaard a ainsi notamment conseillé aux compagnies aériennes de répercuter cette taxe, tout ou en partie, sur leurs tarifs, engendrant une augmentation des billets d’avion qui pourrait varier de 2 à 14 euros par trajet.Le 6 octobre 2011 à 20:05 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

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Lucas Moura happy to score in Nou Camp

first_imgTottenham forward Lucas Moura was delighted to score a goal and help his team qualify for the last 16 of the Champions League after their 1-1 draw at Barcelona.Spurs looked to be heading straight to the Europa League after Dembele scored in the 7th minute to give Barcelona the lead, but Lucas Moura equalized in the 85th minute to keep Tottenham’s Champions League dreams alive.“It was a very important goal and I’m so happy to score here in the Nou Camp in the Champions League and help my team-mates to qualify,” Moura told the club’s website.“It was an amazing moment. The last time here was really sad for me (referencing PSG’s 6-1 defeat) and this is really different.David Villa, SpainQuiz: How much do you know about David Villa? Boro Tanchev – September 14, 2019 Time to test your knowledge about Spanish legendary forward David Villa.“In the second half, we did very well. We had many chances to score. We could win. It was a deserved result.“After the game, we didn’t know what the Inter result was and didn’t know if I could celebrate!“I waited with my team-mates to see and when they said to me it was 1-1 and I saw the fans happy, I knew we’d qualified. It was a very happy night for me, an amazing moment.”last_img read more

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42 believe pensions will become a less important part of benefits

first_imgSome 42% of respondents believe that pensions will form a less significant part of benefits in the future, according to research by Aon Hewitt.Its Pensions administration survey 2015, which is based on 243 responses from pension professionals, also found that just over half (53%) of respondents view their defined benefit (DB) pension scheme as their primary scheme.The research also found:60% of respondents believe the pension freedoms will fundamentally change the decisions that staff need to make, yet just over half (51%) do not currently deliver segmented pensions communication to their staff and have no plans to do so.Around a third (31%) cannot say what proportion of pension scheme members will be 55 next year.70% currently outsource their pension scheme administration.Stephen Ruse (pictured), UK outsourcing commercial director at Aon Hewitt, said: “It seems that pensions administration has hit a brick wall on several issues. On one level, our survey respondents indicated that the quality of administration has remained constant, with a respectable 52% of respondents saying it has at least remained static, a figure that is consistent with our last two surveys.“However, the themes we saw in last year’s survey around data quality also remain. Some 21% of respondents said that the quality of their data will hinder the delivery of guaranteed minimum pension (GMP) reconciliation projects, while 20% said that it will add to the cost.“If I was to make one recommendation for 2016 it would be that any scheme that hasn’t undertaken a data cleanse in the last 12 months should do so.”last_img read more

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What if a Leading Magazine and Events Company Suddenly Vanished

first_imgSaul Rosenthal, TICC’s president, did not return two calls seeking comment.According to a March 13 SEC filing, “during the first quarter of 2008, Pulvermedia indicated that it was projecting a sudden and dramatic decline in projected revenues and earnings” for 2008. TICC, “based upon the review of the company’s financial projections and operating cashflow forecasts … determined that the debt investment warranted a complete write-down, $10.3 million, and the warrants were written-off as well, in the amount of $300,000.” (The same day, the company announced the hiring of an editor-in-chief, Paul Kapustka, completing “the transformation of the VON Media Group,” the company said.) In the following weeks, there were reports of undisclosed layoffs. Jason Chudnofsky, CEO of the company’s events group, told Trade Show Executive that Pulvermedia was in a “silent period” during which “there would be no public discussion of the details of the reorganization.” At its peak, a source said, the company employed 50 people and recently as many as 25. The VON show drew about 9,000 attendees and 350 vendors in 2006, a source said, but saw a 20 percent decline in attendance this year. Exec Exodus, Unexplained Meanwhile, Pulvermedia’s top executives—including founder Jeff Pulver, Chudnofsky, VP Carl Ford and publisher Bill Sell—resigned, one by one, with little explanation. “Just wanted to share the news that I have resigned as a director from Pulvermedia,” Pulver wrote on his blog in April. “And I am not able to say anything else nor can I address any questions about this.” Ford’s posted farewell was even more brief: “So long, it’s been good to know you.”E-mails to these executives at accounts listed on Pulvermedia’s masthead bounced. The phone numbers to the company’s Melville, New York headquarters as well as its Boston and Norwood, Massachusetts offices appear to have been disconnected. Jeff Pulver, who continues to update his personal blog, did not respond to an e-mail seeking comment. Other former members of the Pulver board and advisory group declined to speak on the record.Some bloggers, though, have publicly criticized Pulver, a longtime advocate in the so-called VOIP community, for not speaking.Others say the onus is on TICC. “No one knows what’s happening,” a source said. “Why are they not communicating?”According to two sources close to the company, all of Pulvermedia’s scheduled shows, including this week’s VON.x show in Amsterdam, have been cancelled while TICC tries sell the VON brand in order to recoup part of its investment. A source added that Pulvermedia’s fulfillment company confirmed that the 65,000-circulation VON magazine has been shuttered, too.It remains unclear what will happen to Pulvermedia’s liabilities, including pre-paid, long-term sponsorship deals the company had for its trade shows, and the money owed to hundreds of vendors. No one, it seems, wants to talk about it.”Sometimes you just need to take a backseat and become a spectator of your own life,” Pulver wrote in a cryptic post on his blog today. “Don’t question the time, or seek any answers … Just let it unfold before you.” After months of widespread speculation among bloggers and observers in the tight-knit voiceover IP community—and a media blackout by its top executives—Pulvermedia, the leading media company in the space, appears to have officially shuttered its operation.The trouble, sources say, appeared to begin earlier this year when Melville, New York-based Pulvermedia, which publishes VON magazine and produces the popular VON show, among others, acknowledged to investors that it would not be able to meet its revenue projections in 2008.And, in a twist worthy of a John Grisham novel, TICC Capital, a Greenwich, Connecticut-based firm that had invested some $11 million in Pulvermedia in June 2007, seized the company’s assets, as much as $1.7 million a source says, while its executives were in San Jose, California at the Spring VON conference.“They pulled out in the middle of night, under the cover of darkness,” said one source with knowledge of the Pulvermedia’s operations. “It was a dead-stop.”last_img read more

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Alaska Airlines now nations fifth largest airline

first_imgAn Alaska Airlines jet takes off at the Nome airport. (Photo courtesy of David Dodman.)Alaska Airlines is now the fifth largest airline in the nation after acquiring Virgin America Airlines last week.In a release Wednesday, December 14th, CEO of Alaska Air Group Brad Tilden said that the two airlines may appear to be different, but they share a similar focus on quality of customer service and care for employees.Listen NowThe merger agreement between the two airlines was signed in April and approved in July by Virgin America shareholders.Alaska Airlines and Virgin America plan to spend the next year securing Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification to operate both airlines as a single carrier.last_img

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Researcher claims alien spaceship visited ISS says NASA is involved in coverup

first_img“I was looking at the live Internet NASA cams when I caught an object near the space station. I first caught a small object, which is the same UFO, just further away and a few hours earlier. Then I caught the same UFO closer up. This time it was about 30-50 meters away from the space station. It was huge! The UFO was partially cloaked but was revealed by sunlight bouncing off of it,” wrote Waring on his website.Waring also alleged that NASA is involved in an alien coverup, and the space agency is intentionally hiding dark secrets about extraterrestrial existence fearing public panic. As per Waring, despite the coverup measures adopted by NASA, bitter truths are now getting opened up, and people will soon know the real facts about alien life in the near future.A few weeks back, Scott C Waring had urged Donald Trump to make him the head of the United States space agency, so that he can unveil all the mysteries associated with alien existence. Waring made this demand after he spotted fossil-like structures on the Red Planet. UFO Sightings DailyScott C Waring is now one of the most popular figures among conspiracy theorists and alien enthusiasts. The self-proclaimed researcher, over the course of time, has spotted many anomalies in NASA images takes from Mars and Moon, and it has made many people believe that alien life is a reality. Now, Waring has claimed to have spotted a cloaking alien ship near the International Space Station (ISS).In a recent post on his website ‘UFO Sightings Daily’, Waring revealed that the object was spotted from the NASA live feed. He also added that the alleged flying ship was almost 30-50 meters away from the space station.Waring assured that this flying object is not the SpaceX Dragon Capsule, and he made it clear that this spacecraft is not manmade. After analyzing the nature of the video, Waring revealed that this object could be an alien spaceship from deep space that paid a visit to the International Space Station.last_img read more

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Make list of loan defaulters money launderers HC

first_imgHigh courtThe High Court on Wednesday asked the authorities concerned to prepare a list of loan defaulters and money launderers of the last 20 years and submit it to the court, reports UNB.The HC also issued a rule asking the authorities concerned to explain why order should not be given to form a powerful commission to identify irregularities and corruption in the banking sector in the previous years.The HC bench of justice FRM Nazmul Ahsan and justice KM Kamrul Kader came up with the order and rule after primary hearing on a writ petition filed by lawyer Manzill Morshed on behalf of Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh (HRPB) to stop irregularities and corruption in the banking sector.Secretaries to the Prime Minister’s Office, the cabinet, the finance ministry, Bangladesh Bank governor and chairmen and managing directors of all government and private banks have been made respondents to the rule.Lawyer Manzill Morshed stood for the writ petitioner and deputy attorney general lawyer ABM Abdullah Al Mahmud Bashar for the state.During the hearing, the court said a vulnerable situation has already been created in the government and private banking sector in Bangladesh. Necessary steps should be taken to stop all irregularities for reviving the economy and taking it to a strong position.Earlier, on 23 January, a legal notice was served asking the authorities concerned to conduct an inquiry into irregularities in the banking sector of Bangladesh during the last 20 years.Human rights body HRPB sent the notice asking the government to form a commission under section 3 of the Commission Inquiry Act 1956 for the purpose of making inquiry into the various misappropriation of banking money and irregularities in case of loan sanctioning occurred during the last 20 years in different private and public banks.The notice was sent to Bangladesh Bank governor, secretaries to the cabinet, Prime Minister’s Office, the finance division, the financial institutions division of the finance ministry, and the law ministry asking them to form the commission within a week.As, there was no reply of the notice, the writ was filed with the court.last_img read more

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White Helps Ward 8 Students Get Ready for School

first_imgBy James Wright, Special to the AFRO, jwright@afro.comD.C. Council member Trayon White kicked off the efforts in his ward and throughout the District of Columbia to get students, parents, and the community ready for school.White, a Democrats who represents Ward 8, held a “Back to School Bash” at Garfield Elementary School in Southeast on Aug. 4.“In addition to giving out free book bags to the students, we have booths that deal with health disparities, the fact that the ward is a food desert, educational inequities, and economic empowerment,” White told the AFRO as he looked at the dozens of vendors and scores of people on Garfield’s playground.Trayon White, who represents Ward 8 on the D.C. Council, held a back to school event at Garfield Elementary School in Southeast. (Courtesy Photo)Vendors such as Martha’s Table and City First Bank talked about the programs they offer residents of the ward in addition to handing out trinkets and literature. Free haircuts were performed by Donovan Brown, a freelance barber who works with the non-profit, Open Arms Mentoring Group. “I am doing my part to help the community,” Brown told the AFRO as he cut a youngster’s hair.In the table next to Brown’s, nails were being painted for girls. A few feet away, five tables had numerous book bags for the young people to choose and take away for no cost.The AFRO was told by a White staffer that more than 800 bags were given away.There were moon bounces and a deejay playing the latest songs over the loud speaker, and hotdogs, potato chips, cookies and bottled waters were available for students.The District’s public schools extended school programs beginsAug. 13 and the traditional opening takes place on Aug. 20. D.C. public charter schools start at various times, depending on the institution.Ward 8 had other “Back to School” events such as Bellevue’s Sixth Annual Bash held Aug. 8 near the Bellevue branch of the District’s public library. The Anacostia Coordinating Council’s Health, Wellness and Back to School Festival will have their event on Aug. 18 at the Ferebee Hope Recreation Center.Dawn Bedminster is the president of Garfield’s PTA and agreed with Edwards but had a concern.“This is good for the neighborhood and the communities, but I wish that more families had turned out for this,” Bedminster told the AFRO. “We need to do more events like this in the school and the community.”While White was aiding students in his ward, there have been published reports that he may soon be a student himself.DCist, an online news publication, posted in its July 31 editions that White is set to be a student at the Regent University School of Law this fall. However, White told the AFRO he hasn’t made a final decision on whether he will attend that school, or any other.last_img read more

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Holovect Draws Glorious BattlezoneStyle Images in Midair

first_img Back in the early days of video gaming, monochrome vector images were pretty hot stuff. Asteroids. Battle Zone. Now someone’s figured out how to draw those images not on a screen but right in the air.The best part: you can buy the gadget that can do it, or at least make a pledge that will get you one when production goes ahead as planned. What is the wondrous device? It’s called Holovect, and it’s already surpassed its funding goal on Kickstarter.Creator Jaime Ruiz-Avila says that it’s the world’s first laser-based desktop holographic display. While the Holovect fits the definition of a holographic display, Ruiz-Avila is quick to remind that the images it creates are definitely not holograms. They’re three-dimensional images projected into the air.What kind of images can Holovect project? Anything you feel like drawing up! Ruiz-Avila shows off a vector of the USS Enterprise that was created on Plotly, but you can use other apps as well. Objects can be as large as a 12cm cube — beyond that size they start to get a bit sloppy because of the Holovect’s limitations.They can move, too. Holovect is capable of drawing vectors at up to 50 fps. Oh, and you’re not limited to green. As awesomely nostalgic as it would be to, say, recreating the tank-hunting experience from your Commodore 64 days, there is a Holovect that do RGB images.It’s a little more expensive, though. For the monochrome Holovect, you’ll have to pledge at least $799 (all the early bird units are spoken for). The RGB-capable model will set you back another $1000. Covert Dock for Nintendo Switch Fits in Your PocketRugged BlackBerry Clone With QWERTY Keyboard Hits Kickstarter Stay on targetlast_img read more

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Delhi gears up for New Years Celebrations

first_imgWinter has always been a stage for series of celebrations. With an aim to promote tourism in the capital, this event is a must-go for all ‘urban-nomads’ of dynamic Delhi. In keeping in line with the tradition, Delhi Tourism is organising ‘DJ Night and Food Festival’ at Garden of Five Senses this weekend. This event bids adieu to year 2016 and welcomes the New Year 2017.The 2-day extravaganza is set to offer an awe-inspiring experience to the visitors with amazing food and music. Entry to the garden is at a nominal rate of Rs 30 only. Visitors can tickle their taste buds with a variety of food items and delicacies like momos, barbeque, mocktails and an array of more than 50 varieties of tea! DJ Night till late evening will be organised to enthral the visitors and imbibe the spirit of new year celebrations. Eat, dance and groove to the tune of DJ from 6 pm onwards.last_img read more

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Can the Apple Watch Succeed by Wooing Female Buyers

first_img Register Now » 4 min read Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. This story originally appeared on Fortune Magazine July 23, 2015 Apple’s refusal to disclose sales data for its Apple Watch has been widely read as a sign that demand for the gadget is not meeting expectations. So, what is the company doing to try to boost sales? Doubling down on the female market.Last Thursday, Apple released four new ads showcasing the different ways people can use the Watch. In two of the ads, a pair of young female tourists roam around a foreign city with the Apple Watch acting as travel guide, navigator and translator. A third ad features families with young children, showing how the Watch can help owners connect with their families. The last ad focuses on how wearers—again, mostly women—use the device while working out and tracking their health and fitness goals.“I think what they’re trying to do here is to show the usefulness of the watch to the women who aren’t just going to buy it because it’s the new thing in tech,” said the Braeburn Group’s Michel Contant, the most accurate Apple analyst for Q3 2015.From the very beginning, it was clear that Apple was targeting the Watch at female buyers. Back in February, watch industry site A Blog to Watch wrote about how the company was focusing on the women’s fashion market, advertising in Vogue and landing the Watch on the cover of several women’s glossies.It makes sense to go after women, who are a virtually untapped market; according to a recent report from research firm NPD Group, 71% of smartwatch owners are male. The report also notes that 54% of fitness tracker owners are female, suggesting that, when done right, wearable tech can be a hit with women. Plus, women install more apps and spend more money on apps than men do, making them ideal Watch wearers.So, is the company’s emphasis on women working? It’s difficult to say, given the lack of sales data—though that hasn’t stopped analysts from trying. In May, industry siteMacRumors called attention to a research note by KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo:“We have learned that the 42mm Apple Watch accounts for 60-70% of production. However, the shipping times of 38mm models are generally earlier than those of 42mm. We believe this is because demand for 38mm watches is significantly below that of 42mm ones. We estimate that 42mm models account for over 80% of sales. Assuming that 42mm and 38mm watches are mainly purchased by men and women respectively, the Apple Watch has attracted mostly men.”However, Contant believes that any lag in sales to women is primarily due the speed of adoption. He says that early adopters and “tech geeks” tend to be men. “I see the breakdown eventually evening out to 40% to 45% [of sales to women],” he said. “Women want to see it in action, want to see how useful it is before buying.”Those women who have bought a Watch already appear to be happier with the device than male buyers are. According to a report released on Sunday by independent Apple Watch research platform Wristly, 58% of women were very satisfied or delighted with the Watch’s ease of use, compared to 47% of men.One Apple Watch user, 24-year-old Los Angeles-based Jessica Leitao, says the device is particularly useful for working women. “I think there’s a lot of pressure on women to be in four different places,” she says. “With the Apple Watch, I can focus on what I’m doing without getting distracted having to look at my phone every time I get an email or reminder alert.” The Watch also allows the soon-to-be accountant to leave her purse at home. “It’s liberating to not ever have to carry anything,” says Leitao. “Other women need to try it.”Can Apple turn a handful of happy device owners like Leitao into an army of female Watch wearers? We’ll see. Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goalslast_img read more

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