World Cup 2018: Belgium on the verge of knock-out berth against Tunisia

first_imgBelgium’s ambitions at the World Cup lie beyond the group stage, so the team’s players just want to get through to the knockout round as quickly and easily as possible.The next step in that plan is to beat Tunisia on Saturday.”We have to be concentrated on our game, because with our strengths we don’t have to wonder about how Tunisia will want to play,” Belgium defender Thomas Meunier said Thursday. “We want to do everything to finish the game as soon as we can.”A win for the Belgians at Spartak Stadium would put them on the verge of qualifying from Group G. A win for England over Panama a day later would be confirmation.Belgium started slowly on Monday against a defensive Panama side mostly concerned with avoiding a big loss in its World Cup debut – even coach Hernan Gomez said he was satisfied with the 3-0 loss because “it should have been worse.”2018 FIFA WORLD CUP: FULL COVERAGETunisia is a step up in quality from Panama, but its attacking ability was hobbled by the injury which stopped creative forward Youssef Msakni from coming to Russia for his country’s first World Cup appearance since 2006.BEAUTIFUL GOALSIn a World Cup full of set-pieces, own-goals and penalties, Belgium coach Roberto Martinez was content with the elegant way Belgium beat Panama.All three goals came from open play, with Dries Mertens scoring a volley before Romelu Lukaku headed in a pass from the outside of Kevin De Bruyne’s foot and then chipped the goalkeeper.advertisement”The hardest thing in football is to score goals and they were beautiful goals from open play,” Martinez said Wednesday. “You should not look for perfection. We need to improve, of course. We want to improve.FIFA WORLD CUP: FIXTURES | POINTS TABLE”I think the three games in the group stage, it was always for us to improve in a mental way, in a technical way, in a tactical way.”FORTY-YEAR WAITAnything but a win will leave the Tunisians with little or no chance of qualifying for the knockout stage, but history isn’t on their side.Four decades and 12 World Cup games have come and gone since Tunisia’s last win, a 3-1 victory over Mexico in 1978. That win made history because until then no African team had ever won on soccer’s biggest stage.BELGIUM’S TIME?With Brazil, Germany and Argentina all failing to win their opening games in Russia, some Belgium fans feel it could be their time.The team is trying to keep its feet on the ground, aware that Panama was one of the weakest opponents in the competition. Meunier said he is confident that the World Cup’s historically dominant teams will recover their form.”The first game is always very special because the little teams are very motivated and want to give everything on the pitch,” he said. “But I do think that in the following days, there will not be too much surprises in groups. I’m convinced that the big teams will go through maybe with some difficulties, but they will go through.”last_img read more

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BRIDGE FIRE REPAIRS WILL IMPACT INTERSTATE 29 METRO TRAFFIC

first_imgTRAFFIC ON INTERSTATE 29 NEAR THE VETS BRIDGE CONTINUES TO BE IMPACTED AFTER A FIRE WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON DAMAGED THE NORTHBOUND MAINLINE BRIDGE OVER PERRY CREEK.DAKIN SCHULTZ OF THE IOWA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION SAYS TRAFFIC EACH DIRECTION HAS BEEN CUT TO ONE LANE:Audio Playerhttp://kscj.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/BRIDGE1.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.OC……..THE MEDIAN BARRIER. :15SOUTHBOUND TRAFFIC IS ALSO ONE LANE AND SHIFTED INTO THE NEW CONSTRUCTION FOR NOW.SCHULTZ SAYS THE THICK BLACK SMOKE AND HEAT CREATED A MAJOR TRAFFIC JAM AND ALSO DAMAGED THE BRIDGE:Audio Playerhttp://kscj.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/BRIDGE2.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.OC………..REPAIRS ARE REQUIRED. ;28SCHULTZ SAYS THERE IS OBVIOUS DAMAGE TO THE BRIDGE AND THE LENGTH OF THE TRAFFIC IMPACT DEPENDS ON HOW MUCH DAMAGE IS FOUND:Audio Playerhttp://kscj.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/BRIDGE3.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.OC……….BACK INTO SERVICE. ;16POLICE AND FIRE OFFICIALS REPORTED WEDNESDAY THAT THE FIRE WAS LIKELY STARTED BY PEOPLE USING PROPANE.Photo courtesy KMEGlast_img read more

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a month agoKlopp insists he’s not thinking about Liverpool winning run

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Klopp insists he’s not thinking about Liverpool winning runby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool boss Jurgen Klopp insists he’s not thinking about their stunning winning run.The Reds’ have now won 15 Premier League matches in a row as they prepare to face Sheffield United at Bramall Lane on Saturday but he insists that is not a factor for them.He said, “We don’t think about it. The only moment when I think about it is in the press conference. Nobody mentions it, we don’t think about it and it’s just about the next game.“Thank God we lost from time to time in the Champions League and other cup competitions so we still know how it feels, because that is really important.“We want to go to Sheffield and make their life as uncomfortable as possible. Maybe we are considered a top team but we don’t want to behave like a top team. Playing, if possible, yes but fighting like a proper challenger.“I don’t see any reason why there should be any advantage for Sheffield apart from playing in their own stadium. Is it allowed that they will fight more than us? No. Is it allowed that they will run more than us? No. Is it allowed that they do more? No.“We have to be spot on. That is the plan. We tried to make sure with how we planned the week that the boys will be ready for the game. Really looking forward to it.” last_img read more

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The SEC Made A Ridiculous Amount Of Money In 2014

first_imgSEC Logo in blue background.SEC Logo MoneyLife is good down south – down in the SEC, specifically. According to ESPN’s Brett McMurphy, the SEC made $455 million in 2014, a probable record for revenue among college football conferences. It’s a massive jump in revenue from 2013, when the league made $314.5 million, second that year to the Big Ten, which made $318 million. The conference can thank its new TV network, the SEC Network, for most of the big jump in revenue. That means each school gets a nice $31.07 million gift. SEC will distribute $31.07M per school in revenue, sources told @ESPN. League made record $455M past year— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) May 29, 2015The conference made nearly twice as much as the Big 12.SEC made $455M in revenue, Big 12 “little north of $250M” past year, sources told @ESPN— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) May 29, 2015College football’s strongest conference in recent seasons now has more money to play with.last_img read more

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Atletico Madrid vs Getafe: Joao Felix, Trippier set for debuts

first_imgA summer of rejuvenation has seen Atletico Madrid invest heavily in their playing squad, and Diego Simeone will take his side into their new era with a home fixture against Getafe.The likes of Antoine Griezmann, Diego Godin, Juanfran and Rodri are gone and new stars have arrived in their place – much is expected of Joao Felix, the generational talent who has arrived from Benfica.Getafe, meanwhile, start the season close to home in Madrid for the second consecutive year. They will look to improve on last season’s 2-0 loss at the Bernabeu, but would be delighted to replicate the superb season which followed and brought a fifth-place finish. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Game Atletico Madrid vs Getafe Date Sunday, August 18 Time 9:00pm BST / 4:00pm ET Stream (US) fubo TV (7-day free trial) TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch In the United States (US), the game can be watched live and on-demand with fuboTV (7-day free trial) .New users can sign up for a free seven-day trial of the live sports streaming service, which can be accessed via iOS, Android, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Roku and Apple TV as well as on a web browser. US TV channel Online stream beIN Sports / beIN Sports en Espanol fubo TV (7-day free trial) The match is not available to be watched in the United Kingdom (UK). UK TV channel Online stream N/A N/A Squads & Team News Position Atletico Madrid squad Goalkeepers Oblak, Adan Defenders Gimenez, Arias, Lodi, Savic, Felipe, Hermoso, Trippier, Vrsaljko Midfielders Koke, Partey, Saul, Lemar, Llorente, Herrera, Vitolo Forwards Morata, Felix, Correa, Costa, Kalinic, Saponjic Forwards Diego Costa and Angel Correa are suspended for Atletico, while Sime Vrsaljko is out with a long-term knee injury.The game could see competitive debuts for a host of new signings, including Joao Felix, Mario Hermoso, Marcos Llorente and Kieran Trippier.Atletico Madrid starting XI: Oblak; Trippier, Savic, Gimenez, Lodi; Koke, Saul, Partey, Lemar; Morata, Felix. Position Getafe squad Goalkeepers Soria, Chichizola, Yanez Defenders Suarez, Djene, Bruno, Antunes, Cabrera, Nyom, Garcia, Cucurella, Olivera, Etxeita Midfielders Maksimovic, Bergara, Portillo, Arambarri, Fajr Forwards Molina, Mata, Angel, Gallego Left-back Vitorino Antunes is a long-term absentee but Jose Bordalas otherwise has a full squad of players to select from.Getafe have been quiet in the transfer window and could start the season looking very similar to how they finished the last.Getafe starting XI:  Soria; Suarez, Bruno, Dakonam, Cabrera; Nyom, Arambarri, Fejr, Cucurella; Mata, Molina.Betting & Match Odds Atletico Madrid are 4/9 favourites to win this match. Getafe are on offer at 7/1, while the draw is available at 10/3.Click here to see all of bet365’s offers for the game, including goalscoring markets, correct score predictions and more. Match Preview Diego Simeone Atletico Madrid La Liga 02042019Atletico might be going into the new season expecting to adopt a slightly more attacking approach than in the past, but this is a game which sees the best two defences from last season – with Getafe level with Valencia – going head-to-head.The introduction of Joao Felix in particular could necessitate a more forward-thinking tactical plan but, for the time being, Simeone is aware a raft of new signings could bring some initial teething problems.”He [Felix] has an open mind to learn and listen, he is learning our collective concepts,” he said. “I’m not worried about him leading the team.”I will treat him like an important football player, like the others, but what matters most to me is that we get the best out of the team.”Our objective is to keep improving day by day. We’re a team with many new players that have to adapt and engage in what Atletico Madrid is. They are doing well and are responding accordingly to what we’ve been working on, but we’re focused on the immediate goal, which is Getafe.”Jaime Mata GetafeFor Jose Bordalas, the challenge this year is to improve on the seemingly unimprovable. Fifth place last year represented Getafe’s best ever season, and they were just two points off the top four and Champions League qualification.Their success was largely built on their home form, however, with Atletico strong favourites going into this first game. Goalkeeper David Soria, who spent time in the academies at both Atletico and Real Madrid, was signed last summer and had a superb first season with the club, conceding just 34 goals in 37 league appearances.”Atletico Madrid are a very complete team at the collective level,” he said. “It doesn’t matter to us whether we play them now or later, because obviously you have to play everyone.”As for us, I see the team being eager to start. Our first priority is the league. That is the one that matters to us.”last_img read more

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ESPN Analyst Is Predicting A Major Upset Today

first_imgKirk Herbstreit on the set of ESPN's College GameDayNEW YORK, NY – SEPTEMBER 23: GameDay host Kirk Herbstreit is seen during ESPN’s College GameDay show at Times Square on September 23, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)Week 10 of the 2018 college football season has arrived.What upsets are coming? The past couple of weeks have featured several top teams falling. Surely, there will be some today.One ESPN college football analyst is predicting a big one this afternoon.ESPN released their picks for Week 10’s massive college football slate earlier this week and one expert is going with a big upset in one of the top games.ESPN college football analyst Sam Khan Jr. is picking No. 14 Penn State to upset No. 5 Michigan in Ann Arbor on Saturday afternoon. He’s predicting a score of 28-24.Michigan and Penn State are set to kick off at 3:45 p.m. E.T. today.The game will be on ESPN.You can view the full picks here.last_img read more

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Transparent Oneclassic Wireless Hi-Fi Speakers Offer More than Meets the Eye

first_imgIn the world of audio, the term ‘transparent’ gets thrown around a lot but usually it is referring to the sound of a given piece of audio, not what the speaker producing it looks like. The Oneclassic Wireless Hi-Fi speakers aim to offer a bit of both.This isn’t the first time we’ve seen a transparent speaker, but that doesn’t make the look of the Oneclassic speakers any less impressive. While other brands have used glass, manufacturer Oneaudio chose acrylic, claiming that the sound is warmer and more natural sounding. While we haven’t heard the Oneclassics, there is another advantage that acrylic has over glass: It’s much harder to break. If you knock one of these over, you don’t need to worry about your floor suddenly becoming much more dangerous than it was a minute ago.The look isn’t the only thing that the Oneclassic Wireless Hi-Fi speakers have going for them, as Oneaudio says this is the world’s first audio system to use DECT (Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications). Known in Europe, Australia, South America, and Asia for use in cordless phones, DECT offers an advantage over Bluetooth and similar wireless connectivity. While many standards send signals to one speaker and then the other, DECT sends signals to both speakers at the same time, just as a cable would. This more tightly synchronized sound should make for clearer, better sounding audio.Inside the clear acrylic bodies, each speaker packs a 6.5-inch paper cone woofer and a two-inch silk dome tweeter, with the built-in amplifier pushing up to 70 watts and 50 watts of power respectively. Four different sound profiles are supported — warm, natural, clarity, and dynamic — with onboard EQ for further customization of the sound.When it comes to setup, the Oneclassic speakers don’t need to be hooked up to an amplifier, with a simple USB dongle or optional console box taking care of everything. Connectivity from mobile devices and computers is supported out of the box, while the console box add-on allows you to play audio from your TV, Blu-ray player, or other gear.The Oneclassic Wireless Hi-FI speakers were initially launched via Indiegogo, but there is no need to worry about the risks involved with crowdfunding anymore. The speakers are available for $2,000 via the Fancy website.A version of this article originally appeared at our “brother site,” Digital Trends. How Full Harvest and Misfits Market Are Saving Ugly Produce Editors’ Recommendations 12 Classic Sci-Fi Novels Everyone Who Likes Reading Should Read The Evolution and History of the Home Stereo The Best Wired and Wireless Headphones for Travel The Maserati Quattroporte: Luxury You Can Sort of Almost Imagine Affording last_img read more

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Investment Makes Courthouses Safer

first_imgThe province is spending $2 million to make courtrooms safer, Justice Minister Ross Landry announced today, Nov. 17. The investment is part of the province’s new capital plan to make life better for families. “Safety and security of people is of paramount importance in our courtrooms,” said Mr. Landry. “This significant investment will make courtrooms and courthouses across the province safer.” The investment includes new or replacement closed-circuit cameras, access controls, alarms and other protective measures. The improvements are being done at courthouses in Amherst, Antigonish, Bridgewater, Digby, Halifax, Kentville, Port Hawkesbury, Sydney, Truro and Yarmouth. This is the second time in the province’s history that government is releasing some details of the capital plan before the spring budget. This sends a clear signal of what the province intends to do in the year ahead and gives the private sector greater opportunity to prepare for upcoming projects, resulting in efficiencies and cost savings for the province. The province’s new capital plan will invest millions of dollars to make life better for families. It will create good jobs, grow the economy, and provide better healthcare for all Nova Scotians. The capital plan invests in projects that are most important to Nova Scotians like emergency rooms, courts, schools, roads and hospital equipment. Further details on individual investments will be announced in the months ahead.last_img read more

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Hormone therapies increase breast cancer risk

first_imgHormone therapy to relieve menopause symptoms slightly increases the risk of breast cancer, according to a large-scale study published recenty. Other research has established a similar link, but the new study is the first to show that the risk remains elevated even ten years after treatment has stopped. It also quantifies for the first time the level of risk associated with different types of menopause hormone therapy, or MHT. The chance that a women between 50 and 69 who has never undergone MHT will contract breast cancer is about 6.3 in a 100. Also Read – An income drop can harm brainBy comparison, a woman in that age bracket who takes oestrogen and, intermittently, progestagen for five years stands a 7.7 in 100 chance of getting the disease. If – in the same scenario – progestagen use is daily, the risk goes up again: 8.3 in 100. Finally, an oestrogen-only regimen is closest to the no-hormones baseline, with a 6.8 out of 100 risk. More prolonged use carries even higher risk, said researchers. “Use of MHT for 10 years results in about twice the excess breast cancer risk compared to five years of use,” thet added. Also Read – Shallu Jindal honoured with Mahatma Award”But there appears to be little risk from use of menopausal hormone therapy for less than one year.” The topical use of vaginal oestrogens, applied as a cream, is also relatively risk-free, she added. Women tend to begin MHT at the start of menopause when ovarian function ceases, causing oestrogen levels to fall substantially. At the same time, progesterone levels fall to near zero. As a consequence, many women experience uncomfortable “hot flushes” that can be alleviated by replacing the naturally depleted hormones. Regulatory bodies in Europe and the United States recommend that MHT be reduced to the shortest time needed, but usage has tended to average at least five years. In North America and Europe, MHT increased rapidly during the 1990s, halved abruptly in the early 2000s, and then stabilised about ten years ago. “Our new findings indicate that some increased risk persists even after stopping use of MHT,” said co-author of the study. Beral and colleagues examined data from 58 previous studies around the world from 1992 to 2018 that recorded MHT use. Within the data set, 108,647 women subsequently developed breast cancer, at an average age of 65. Researchers were then able to look for statistical links between cancer rates, on the one hand, and type along with duration of treatment, on the other.last_img read more

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Laura Vandervoort Says No To SeaWorld

first_imgNaked and floating in a tiny tank of water next to a “Welcome to SeaWorld” sign, Toronto-born Smallville star Laura Vandervoort is putting herself in the place of captive orcas for a provocative new PETA ad campaign.The print ad directs viewers to SeaWorldOfHurt.com by proclaiming, “Come see Laura as she’s confined to a tiny tank and forced to perform tricks for your entertainment! Learn the truth behind the show and Boycott SeaWorld!”“We wanted to express the confinement and the torture and the agony and the anxiety that the orcas go through in a tank, for them, the size of a tub,” Vandervoort says in an exclusive video interview with PETA. “I had seen the movie Blackfish and not only did it make me cry … but it impacted me in a way that I wanted to do something, and I wanted to help.”While orcas in the wild travel up to 100 miles per day, SeaWorld confines them to tiny tanks in which they break their teeth and endure chronic pain from snapping and gnawing at the pool gates as a result of stress and aggression. At least 25 orcas have died in SeaWorld facilities since 1986—and not one died of old age.Vandervoort joins a long list of celebrities — including Bob Barker, Krysten Ritter, Behati Prinsloo, Joan Jett, Kathy Najimy, Tommy Lee, and Eli Roth — who have teamed up with PETA to speak out against amusement parks that keep intelligent marine mammals in captivity.last_img read more

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Former NL premier Danny Williams to testify at Muskrat Falls hearing

first_imgHAPPY VALLEY-GOOSE BAY, N.L. – Public hearings will continue Monday morning for an independent inquiry into the issues surrounding the $12.7 billion Muskrat Falls hydro project on Labrador’s lower Churchill River.Former Newfoundland and Labrador premier Danny Williams will begin testimony at 9:30 a.m. at the Beothuk building in St. John’s on Monday and Tuesday to discuss the project near Happy Valley-Goose Bay, which has been described as “the greatest fiscal mistake in Newfoundland and Labrador’s history ” by current premier Dwight Ball.During his term, Williams championed the project — which has been plagued by cost overruns and construction delays — as a form of energy independence from Quebec.He retired from politics shortly after announcing the plan for Muskrat Falls in 2010.At a hearing earlier this month, historian Jason Churchill told the inquiry that Quebec’s stronghold on the Churchill River’s resources have long blocked Newfoundland and Labrador from accessing elusive energy markets.He said Quebec has a disproportionate amount of control over the Churchill Falls Generating Station, informing Williams’ 2007 energy plan that proposed Muskrat Falls.Representatives from Indigenous groups, environmental groups and engineering and economic experts will take the stand later this month.Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version mistakenly identified the lower Churchill River as being in Newfoundland. In fact, it’s in Labrador.last_img read more

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UN nuclear watchdog proposes timeout by both sides on Irans nuclear programme

The head of the United Nations atomic watchdog agency is calling for a “timeout” on the Iranian nuclear issue, with Iran suspending uranium enrichment and the international community suspending sanctions over a programme that Tehran says is for producing energy but which others maintain is for making nuclear weapons. A key to resolving the issue is a direct engagement between Iran and the United States similar to that with the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director-General Mohamed ElBaradei stressed in several interviews over the weekend in Davos, Switzerland, where he attended the World Economic Forum. “I call on all parties to take a simultaneous timeout. Iran should take a timeout from its enrichment activity, the international community a timeout from the application of sanctions, and parties should go immediately to the negotiating table,” he said. “The right track is dialogue, negotiation.” The US led successful efforts in the Security Council last month to impose sanctions, maintaining that Iran’s nuclear programme was aimed at weapons production, a claim Tehran consistently denies. In recent reports, Mr. ElBaradei has noted that although the IAEA has not seen any diversion of nuclear material to nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices, it also cannot conclude that there are no undeclared nuclear materials or activities in Iran. The crisis began with the discovery in 2003 that Iran had concealed its nuclear activities for 18 years in breach of its obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). “North Korea is a good example,” Dr. ElBaradei said, stressing the need for US-Iranian talks. “For years, things were not moving. Only when the US talked directly with the North Koreans, we had a positive report. If we are able to talk to the North Koreans, we ought to be able to talk to the Iranians,” he told CNN. He voiced hope that he would be able to report positively to the IAEA Board of Governors on the implementation of nuclear safeguards in Iran at its next meeting beginning 5 March at IAEA headquarters in Vienna. “I’d like to report we’re on the right track,” he added. “The right track is dialogue, negotiation… The key to the Iranian issue is a direct engagement between Iran and the US. If I report negatively, and we have escalation and counter-escalation, we are on the wrong track.” On reports that Iran has banned 38 IAEA inspectors, Dr. ElBaradei told CNN that Tehran was not banning inspectors, but attempting to lower their number. “This reduced somewhat the flexibility we have, but I should say we have over 100 inspectors in Tehran, so we have enough people to do the job,” he said. “It is in the interest of Iran for us to be able to do our work and to be able to show that they are transparent and they are proactive.” 29 January 2007The head of the United Nations atomic watchdog agency is calling for a “timeout” on the Iranian nuclear issue, with Iran suspending uranium enrichment and the international community suspending sanctions over a programme that Tehran says is for producing energy but which others maintain is for making nuclear weapons. read more

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UN envoy to Lebanon voices support for effort to develop defence strategy

14 April 2010The top United Nations envoy to Lebanon today met with the minister in charge of administrative reform and voiced support for the country’s national dialogue, a reconciliation process, which will meet tomorrow to discuss developing a national defence strategy. Michael Williams, the UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon, also expressed UN support for the reinforcement of Lebanon’s State institutions, during his discussions with the Minister of State for Administrative Reform, Mohammad Fneish, in the Lebanese capital, Beirut.“We believe the Ministry of Administrative Reform, which is led by Minister Fneish, has a very important role to play in this regard,” Mr. Williams said.The Special Coordinator yesterday discussed the preparations for the forthcoming municipal elections with the country’s Minister of Social Affairs, Salim Sayegh.He welcomed the decision taken on 9 March as part of the national dialogue in which all political sides agreed to maintain a calm atmosphere during the polls.The four rounds of the 2010 municipal elections are scheduled to be held every Sunday in May starting in Beirut, followed by the Bekaa region, then south Lebanon and finally in north Lebanon, according to media reports. read more

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Pakistan needs to invest more in disaster risk reduction says UN official

22 February 2011Pakistan is at risk of increased loss of lives, property and livelihoods in future if it fails to invest in disaster preparedness, the top United Nations official on disaster risk reduction, Margareta Wahlström, said today at the end of a five-day visit to the South Asian country. “Pakistan cannot afford to risk its future and lives of its people by being ill-prepared,” Ms. Wahlström, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction, told reporters in Islamabad. “As Pakistan begins the task of rebuilding, political will is needed to halt the disaster spiral.”Last year’s massive floods that devastated a vast swathe of the country from the north to the south is estimated to have resulted in $8.7-$10.8 billion in damage – approximately one-third of the government’s 2009-2010 budget.Investing $27 million in disaster risk reduction mechanisms can greatly reduce losses from future disasters in Pakistan, according to the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank.“Now is the time to build up Pakistan’s resilience to disaster. The cost of implementing safeguards pales in comparison to the damage to lives and property,” said Neva Khan, the director in Pakistan of Oxfam, which hosted Ms. Wahlström’s visit.Ms. Wahlström visited a flood-hit community in southern Punjab province, where she saw simple risk mitigation strategies at work, including protecting food stores from floodwater and building housing on raised platforms.She highlighted UN mechanisms to support governments pursuing disaster risk measures, including the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction, which brings together thousands of disaster risk reduction experts every two years to share experiences and chart the way forward. The Platform’s next meeting is scheduled for 8-13 May in Geneva.She noted that the Government of Pakistan has joined international initiatives to reduce disaster risk. “The immediate need is for commitment from stakeholders. Without it, hard-fought gains will be in danger when the next disaster strikes,” she said.The chairman of Pakistan’s National Disaster Management Authority, Nadeem Ahmed, said the real heroes of the country’s recent disasters are the millions of citizens who helped families and communities.“Pakistan urgently needs damage mitigation strategies to lift the burden from their shoulders. Donors and the international community must ensure that resources reach those working on the ground to make disaster risk reduction a reality in Pakistan,” he added. read more

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Ottawa will take necessary action to make sure BC doesnt block Trans

OTTAWA — Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr says the government will not entertain any attempts by British Columbia to stall or stop the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline.“If that is the goal of any province, we will take the necessary action to ensure that federally approved resource projects proceed.” Carr said Monday.When asked if that includes taking B.C. to court, he said Canada has “all kinds of options” to exert its constitutional authority over interprovincial pipelines.Federal officials, ministers and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau have been negotiating with Alberta and B.C. for almost two weeks now, ever since B.C. launched a consultation asking its residents whether the province should ban any increase in oil flows through pipelines within the province pending further research on the impact of an oil spill.Such a ban would kill the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, which was given federal approval in November 2016 and would triple capacity of a line that already runs between Edmonton and Vancouver.B.C. hasn’t yet enacted such a ban, which limits the legal options for Ottawa to fight back.“All British Columbia has tangibly done at this point is signal its intention to consult with the people of its province,” said Carr.‘It’s not just about the pipelines’: Former B.C. premier Christy Clark says blocking Trans Mountain is ’illegal’NP View: Ottawa doesn’t need a new energy regulator. It needs a new spineCan B.C. really stop the Trans Mountain pipeline, and how can the federal government make sure it is built?Ottawa has constitutional jurisdiction over interprovincial infrastructure, such as highways, pipelines and electricity grids. Alberta wants the pipeline, but the B.C. NDP government elected last year campaigned on a promise to use “every tool in the toolbox” to fight it.Alberta Premier Rachel Notley said Monday Ottawa has to persuade B.C. to take the threat to limit oil flows off the table.“That is completely unconstitutional, it’s a made-up authority, it’s a made-up law, it’s ridiculous,” she said.“That threat must be removed. We appreciate that the federal government gets the ridiculousness of it as much as we do, but sitting back and letting B.C. threaten it and not doing anything to tell them to pull back the threat and stop walking around being ridiculous, that’s the key objective we’re seeking.”In retaliation for B.C.’s threat to kill the pipeline, Notley cancelled talks to buy B.C. electricity and banned imports of B.C. wine into Alberta. She says the moves have helped get Ottawa’s attention, there are more options Alberta can take and she believes Ottawa is working to find a solution.“They know we’re serious,” Notley said.Shannon Stubbs, federal Conservative natural resources critic, is not as convinced as Notley that Ottawa is doing everything it can to get the pipeline built. She introduced an opposition motion in the House of Commons on Monday calling on the federal government to make public no later than Feb. 15, its specific plan to get the pipeline built.Stubbs said the Liberals keep saying the same thing over and over, that they approved the pipeline and that it will get built, but they are not putting any specifics on the table about how that will happen. She said it’s incumbent on them to decide what those moves are, but said they should include defining “unnecessary delays” and what will be done to get B.C. to remove the threat to ban increased oil flows.Carr called the Conservative motion an attempt to manufacture a crisis and stoke regional tensions.Construction began on the Westridge Marine Terminal where the pipeline ends in Burnaby, B.C. in September 2017, but construction on the pipeline itself is still awaiting final permits and route approvals. Kinder Morgan recently said it expects the operational date for the pipeline is now a year later than expected, in December 2020. Officials have also said they are committed to the $7.4 billion project despite the latest stumbling blocks. read more

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EU UK Canada continue to push for Sri Lankas Parliament to meet

Along with other key international partners of Sri Lanka, the Ambassador of the European Union met yesterday (Monday) with President Maithripala Sirisena, to express their expectation that a solution respectful of the country’s constitution would be found quickly. The European Union, the UK and Canada today continued to push for Sri Lanka’s Parliament to meet immediately to resolve the political crisis in the country.The European Union (EU) said that the sudden deterioration of the situation in Sri Lanka over the weekend puts the country at risk of instability and unrest. The EU expects Sri Lanka to pursue its positive path towards reconciliation and democracy for the full benefit of the Sri Lankan people.Meanwhile the British Foreign and Commonwealth office said that it was concerned by ongoing political developments in Sri Lanka and was following the fast-moving situation closely. “We reiterate our call for all parties to refrain from violence and respect due process and the rule of law. Canada calls on President Maithripala Sirisena to immediately reconvene Parliament and rescind the decision to prorogue. The people of Sri Lanka deserve transparency and accountability. The Parliament of Sri Lanka—whose representatives have been duly elected by the people of Sri Lanka—must be afforded their constitutional responsibility to determine Sri Lanka’s prime minister,” the Canadian Foreign Ministry said. Canada called upon the Government to ensure the safety and security of journalists, activists and human rights defenders, who play a vital role in defending democracy. (Colombo Gazette) “To this end, it is important that the President allows the immediate reconvening of the Parliament so that the elected representatives of the Sri Lankan people can fulfil their duties. In the current context of tensions and uncertainties, it is of utmost importance that violence and provocation are avoided and that law enforcement agencies act with restraint,” the EU said. “Once again, I call upon all parties to uphold the constitution and due political and legal process. I urge President Sirisena, in consultation with the Speaker, to reconvene the parliament immediately in order to give the democratically elected representatives of the Sri Lankan people their voice at this time,” Minister for Asia and the Pacific Mark Field said.He said the UK, as a friend of Sri Lanka, remains committed to working with international partners and alongside the Sri Lankan Government and people to support democracy, human rights, and reconciliation.Meanwhile, the Canadian Foreign Ministry said that Canada remains deeply concerned by the political situation in Sri Lanka. read more

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With slower growth numbers and weak rebound expected China cant play worlds

AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email With slower growth numbers, and weak rebound expected, China can’t play world’s economic hero by News Staff Posted Jul 13, 2012 4:00 am MDT BEIJING, China – China’s economic growth fell to a three-year low, and although analysts said a recovery may be in sight, it will probably be too weak to pull the world out of its slump.The world’s second-largest economy grew by 7.6 per cent over a year earlier in the three months ending in June, its slowest since early 2009 during the global crisis, data showed Friday.Analysts pointed to strong bank lending as a sign of a possible recovery in the second half, but slower growth in retail sales and factory output left them uncertain how fast or how vigorously the economy will improve.“The soft landing is still on track largely as expected, but the rebound may be slightly more drawn out,” said Moody’s Analytics economist Alaistair Chan in a report.The latest data dampen hopes China can make up for weak demand from debt-crippled Europe and the United States, which is struggling with a sluggish recovery.“It is not certain whether or not there will be a strong upward rebound. But at least the economic growth rate will stop coming down,” said economist Xiao Li at Industrial Bank in Shanghai.The impact of lower Chinese demand could fall hardest on Asian economies that supply industrial components to its vast manufacturing industry, as well as exporters of oil, iron ore and other commodities such as Australia and African nations. Chinese imports of steel, copper and oil have declined by volume over a year ago.On Thursday, the Asian Development Bank cut its growth forecast for developing Asia to 6.6 per cent from April’s outlook of 6.9 per cent. It cited Europe’s financial crisis, the slow pace of U.S. recovery and lower growth in China and India.In a positive sign for China, a different measure of growth showed output in the latest quarter rose 1.8 per cent over the previous three-month period, up from the first quarter’s 1.6 per cent. Beijing began reporting such quarter-on-quarter growth — the system used by other major economies — only last year.June bank lending rose 16 per cent over May, beating forecasts.The economy “will begin to improve meaningfully from August onwards,” said JP Morgan economists Haibin Zhu, Grace Ng and Lu Jiang in a report.The slowdown has raised the threat of job losses and political tension at a sensitive time for the ruling Communist Party. It is trying to enforce calm ahead of a planned once-a-decade handover of power to younger leaders late this year.Beijing has responded by cutting interest rates twice since the start of June, reducing fuel prices and pumping money into the economy through higher investment by state-owned industry and more spending on building low-cost housing and other public works.Premier Wen Jiabao, China’s top economic official, said last weekend the economy faces pressure to slow further, suggesting Beijing might be considering new stimulus measures.“We need to see what policies the government will carry out to decide how good the economy will look,” said Industrial Bank’s Xiao.The communist government has more leeway than the United States or Europe to launch more stimulus measures if needed. Its state-owned banking industry is flush with cash and avoided the financial turmoil that battered Western lenders. Government debt is relatively low.Quarterly growth was in line with the government’s target of 7.5 per cent for the year, which forecasters say China still is likely to achieve. That is far above Western levels but a marked drop from 2010’s explosive 10.5 per cent expansion.Even after growth rebounds, it is unlikely ever to return to double-digit annual rates. Communist leaders are trying to reduce reliance on exports and investment and promote cleaner, energy-efficient growth based on technology development and consumer spending, which will produce slower gains.“After 30 years of vigorous growth, China’s economy has entered a period of transition,” government spokesman Sheng Laiyun said at a news conference. “The potential growth rate will drop.”Sheng rejected suggestions by some analysts that the slowdown might be deeper than reported and that Beijing ordered companies to make the economy look healthier by inflating data on electric power consumption, a key industrial indicator.“I want to say right here they are wrong,” Sheng said.June retail sales growth declined to 12.1 per cent adjusted for price changes, down from the previous month’s 13.8 per cent. Growth in factory output edged down to 9.5 per cent from May’s 9.6 per cent.In a potentially bad sign for China’s foreign suppliers, June import growth fell by half from May’s level to 6.3 per cent as factories facing weak orders cut back on raw materials purchases.China’s rapid economic growth has decelerated steadily for eight quarters, the longest slowdown since the government began reporting such data in 1992, according to Yu Bin, a Cabinet researcher. He said the previous record was six quarters.The slowdown is due in part to controls imposed in 2010-11 to cool overheating and inflation fueled in part by Beijing’s huge stimulus in response to the 2008 crisis. Chinese leaders reversed course last year and began easing controls after global demand abruptly plunged.“It is often forgotten that this recent slowdown has been an orchestrated one” to cool inflation, said Cameron Peacock, a market analyst for Australia’s IG Markets. “Mission accomplished. China now has the room to re-stimulate its economy.”Beijing is moving cautiously after its 2008 stimulus pushed up inflation and spurred a wasteful building boom. Authorities say curbs on building and home sales to cool surging housing prices will remain in place, even though pumping up the slumping construction industry offers a quick way to boost growth.Some parts of Beijing’s response to the slump threaten to set back efforts to reduce reliance on exports and government investment and to nurture more self-sustaining growth driven by domestic consumption. Wen said this week that sustaining investment should be China’s priority, an acknowledgement that consumption is rising more slowly than planned.Investment picked up in June, with spending on factories, real estate and other fixed assets rising 23.2 per cent, up from the previous month’s 20.1 per cent.China’s relative strength conceals severe pain in some industries. Some retailers say monthly sales have fallen by as much as half this year and the Chinese shipbuilding industry association says May orders were down by almost half from a year earlier.___AP researcher Zhao Liang contributed. read more

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Ideal conditions for more Vancouver tech IPOs as resource sector struggles

Hootsuite’s owl mascots are shown in the company’s cabin-themed office in Vancouver in a handout photo. Vancouver’s high-tech sector is all set to cash in on Canada’s public listing boom, according to industry watchers. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Hootsuite by Ian Bickis, The Canadian Press Posted Jun 19, 2015 2:15 am MDT Last Updated Jun 19, 2015 at 6:40 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Ideal conditions for more Vancouver tech IPOs as resource sector struggles CALGARY – Vancouver’s high-tech sector is poised to cash in on Canada’s public listing boom.The combination of lower returns in traditional resource sectors, alongside a strong pool of tech companies valued in the hundreds of millions, has created ideal conditions for them to go public, Brent Holliday, CEO of Garibaldi Capital Advisors, said in an interview.“What you see is a thirst for public issues from the institutional investors in the TSX, where they’re going to get some return, where they’re going to get some growth,” said Holliday.Vancouver-based Mogo Finance Technology Inc., the creator of an online loan platform, is already working through a public listing as it looks to raise $50 million.The company has reportedly settled on a slightly lower issuing price than the $11 to $13 it was seeking, but Nick Waddell, editor of the technology-focused Cantech Newsletter, says it’s still been a strong showing.“I think it’s only a lukewarm reception when compared to a Shopify, because coming on the heels of something eight times over subscribed is a tough act to follow.”Waddell says Vancouver tech companies are growing more confident that they can compete internationally. That has meant fewer companies selling out early as they instead concentrate on growing their business.“There’s a new attitude among these 20-something, 30-something founders,” says Waddell. “There’s a confidence that we can take on the world, and we’re going to do it.”Holliday points to the growth of later-stage funding to help their companies grow, rather than being forced to accept a takeover offer.“Those companies that could have been IPO candidates last decade ended up selling early; they had no other way of growing,” said Holliday.He points to new funds like OMERS Ventures, the venture capital arm of the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System’s pension fund, for helping fill the void in the $10 million to $50 million range of funding.“That really gives the companies the fuel they need to become global players,” said Holliday.Vancouver-based Hootsuite is one of the most highly anticipated public listings in Canada, but so far the company hasn’t made any time commitments about going public.The company is one of many that’s benefitted from late-stage funding, raising $60 million last year from existing investors Accel Partners, Insight Venture Partners and OMERS Ventures.Hootsuite’s CEO Ryan Holmes has been a champion of growing companies in Vancouver. Back in 2013, he committed to long-term investment in the city in an editorial.“My colleagues and I want to grow HootSuite into a billion-dollar company right here in Vancouver, then go on to fund a whole new generation of tech ventures in the city. We’ll have the capital and the experience to make a real run at turning Vancouver into a legitimate high-tech centre.”And while Hootsuite, which helps companies manage their social networks, is one of the more closely followed public listing candidates, there are many others in the city.Holliday says there are probably 20 technology companies in Canada that could go public, pointing to Vision Critical, which provides customer research, BuildDirect, an online home improvement retailer, and Cymax Stores, an online furniture retailer.Follow @ibickis on Twitter read more

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World will benefit greatly from more futureoriented integrated Asia – Ban

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) meets with Thura Shwe Mann, Speaker of the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw (or Assembly of the Union) of Myanmar. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon with local UN staff in Myanmar. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas Asia is on the “leading edge” of 21st century solutions, but it is plagued by tensions rooted in another time including historical and territorial disputes that have to be managed and resolved peacefully” Mr. Ban told the 9th East-Asia Summit, held in Nay Pyi Taw. “We know the absence of dialogue heightens the risk of escalation – even inadvertent conflict – due to misunderstanding or miscalculation,” Mr. Ban added, welcoming the Summit and its efforts to build an Asia-wide institutional framework for dialogue.The Secretary-General called on Asian countries to expand their coordination and explore creating a new security architecture for closer regional cooperation, especially in the Northeast Asia. The world faces immense challenges that cannot be addressed by one conflict or organization alone, he said. Conflict continues to rage in Syria, Iraq and beyond. The Ebola virus continues its deadly grip on West Africa. Threats such as drug trafficking, transnational crime and terrorism are growing in intensity and feeding off each other. Mr. Ban applauded the initiative of the Republic of Korea to complement existing security or coordination mechanisms and explore ways to fill the current gaps in dialogue. He also welcomed efforts such as those by China and Japan to find a constructive, positive path forward. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) meets with Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev of the Russian Federation, in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) meets with President Thein Sein of Myanmar. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) meets with Takehiko Nakao, President of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon addresses members of the local media in Myanmar, during his trip to the country to attend the ASEAN Summit. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon greets a member of the local media in Myanmar. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meets with Aung San Suu Kyi, Chairperson of Myanmar’s National League for Democracy (NLD). UN Photo/Rick Bajornas ‹ ›Various international issues and challenges including regional maritime security, the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, pandemics, natural disasters, illegal trafficking in arms, narcotics and people, and environmental degradation depend on enhanced cooperation among the countries of Asia.“I thank many countries around this table for stepping up in solidarity to respond to the unprecedented Ebola outbreak in West Africa,” Mr. Ban said, urging the need to help speed up efforts to first get the crisis under control with an “all hands on deck” approach. Efforts are paying dividends with the rate of new Ebola cases showing encouraging signs of slowing. But as caseloads go down in some areas, they are rising in others. Huge gaps remain in funding, equipment and medical personnel. As for regional issues, the Secretary-General called for more to be done to reduce the risks of disasters in Asia. Mr. Ban commended leadership on improving disaster response capacities – and look forward to active participation in the third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction, in Sendai, Japan next March.Next year will be pivotal for three important priorities, namely, the target year of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), shaping the post-2015 development agenda, the sustainable development goals and addressing climate change. The Secretary-General commended yesterday’s announcement by the Governments of China and the United States of their post-2020 action on climate change. All countries, especially all major economies, should follow the lead of the world’s two largest economies and announce ambitious post-2020 targets no later than the first quarter of 2015. On the margins of the Summit, the Secretary-General met with Myanmar’s President Thein Sein commending him for advancing the peace process between the Government and ethnic armed groups. Mr. Ban underlined the need for all stakeholders to move toward signing a ceasefire and beginning a political dialogue. Concerning the situation in Rakhine and the continued polarization between the communities, Mr. Ban took note of the recent developments, including the appointment of a new Chief Minister and consultations on the three-year Action Plan. Underlying causes had to be addressed through substantive and early action, including on the issue of citizenship. The establishment of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in the country would help further strengthen human rights, the UN Chief said. Mr. Ban also met with Thura U Shwe Mann, Speaker of the Lower House of Myanmar’s Parliament, to highlight the positive role it has played. Debates in Parliament on media laws, hate speech, interfaith marriage, religious conversion, and other issues would help promote democracy and communal harmony. The Secretary-General also underlined the role the Parliament could play in ensuring that the upcoming general election process would be credible, inclusive and transparent. Speaking with the Chairperson of the National League for Democracy (NLD), Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, Mr. Ban commended her important role in leading the opposition and her positive contributions toward strengthening the democratic fabric of Myanmar. The Secretary-General and Daw Aung San Suu Kyi exchanged views on the upcoming elections, constitutional reform and national reconciliation in Rakhine and elsewhere in the country. There was great expectation that the upcoming elections in 2015 would be transparent and fair.Mr. Ban also met with Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to discuss the conflict in Ukraine. He expressed strong concern at the current situation and its impact on the relations between Russia and Europe as well as the United States.Russia should use its considerable influence to help de-escalate the conflict and bring Ukraine back to a path of peace and stability. All parties should ensure that the Minsk Protocol be fully implemented.Prime Minister Medvedev and Mr. Ban also discussed the post-2015 development agenda and climate change. In addition, the Secretary-General thanked Russia for its role in the Ebola response. read more

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