Nine held in Myanmar in Rakhine rebel fundraising probe

first_imgYangon: Nine people subject to a police probe over fundraising for a rebel group fighting Myanmar’s military in restive Rakhine state were remanded in custody Friday, including several recently deported from Singapore. Among the deportees is Aung Myat Kyaw, who is believed to be the brother of Brigadier General Tun Myat Naing, the chief of the Arakan Army (AA). Myanmar’s army has deployed thousands of troops across Rakhine to try and crush the AA, which claims to be fighting for more autonomy for the state’s ethnic Rakhine Buddhists. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from US Scores have died — including civilians — in shootings, ambushes and military strikes, although the conflict area is under strict lockdown making independent reporting impossible. On July 10, Singaporean authorities said they had detained “several” Myanmar nationals — including one with a “direct relationship with a key AA leader” — for coordinating the “AA’s fundraising efforts” among the Rakhine expatriate community. Tens of thousands of Myanmar migrants work in the city-state, mainly in construction. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential polls On Friday Yangon deputy district judge Min Thant said the nine were being investigated by police under the Counterterrorism Law. “We have issued an order to remand them from today to August 9 in police custody,” Min Thant told reporters. The nine are being investigated for financing terrorism, and three — Aung Myat Kyaw, Tun Aye and Hein Zaw — over an extra charge of involvement with the AA. If charged and found guilty, the maximum sentence is seven years in prison. Min Thant did not clarify if they were all detained in Singapore, and declined to say where the group was being held in Yangon. The father of the only female suspect Aye Myat Mon, who works as an engineer in Singapore, told AFP he was worried about the lack of information over his daughter’s whereabouts. “We worry about injustices happening,” Kyaw Maung said from the Rakhine capital Sittwe. “The authorities should let us know.” The AA could not be reached for comment on Friday. Violence between the military and the rebel group has forced more than 30,000 people from their homes in recent months. The rebellion, which has simmered since the group’s formation in 2009, has widespread support from ethnic Rakhine Buddhists, who have felt marginalised for decades in one of the country’s poorest states. Little is known about how the AA raises funds, though “diasporas are often targeted for offshore revenue raising”, said independent analyst David Mathieson.last_img read more

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YEIDA cancels land allotment of two builder groups

first_imgGreater Noida: The Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development authority (YEIDA) has cancelled the plot allotment of two builders’ groups as they have failed to develop any project on the land even after years of taking possession over the land. Officials said that the two builders also own crores of rupees as dues to the authority. As per a senior YEIDA officer, the land allotment of two builders’ groups– Lotus Buildmart and Swikrati Infracon –have been dismissed. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murder”The two builders were allotted plots in 2011 under sector 22 D along the Yamuna Expressway but since then they didn’t develop any project on the site. Moreover, they didn’t even apply for the approval of map. The authority had served several notices to them in past and the actions were taken after they failed to respond any of the notices,” the officer said. As per the information, Lotus Buildmart builder group was allotted over 10,000 square meters of land for developing a project. The builder had made initial payments against the land but owns nearly Rs 7 crores as due amount. Apart from this, the Swikrati Infracon group was allotted 25,000 square meters of land in sector 22 D against which the builder failed to clear dues of Rs 16 crores to the authority. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchingsYEIDA is facing financial crisis as the builders who are developing group housing projects in the city, are failing to pay over Rs 3,500 crore land dues to the authority. The authority has been issuing cancellation notices to these builders who have cited dip in sales of flat, failing to clear the dues. This has also been troubling homebuyers, who have spent their life time savings to buy flats in group housing projects and are waiting for possession. Under the policy, the authority allots land to builders and the payment is to be made on instalment basis. The builder has to deposit 10% of the total land cost at the time of allotment and the remaining amount has to be paid in instalments. However, some of fraudulent builders take advantage of policy and flee after taking money from the innocent homebuyers, leaving incomplete projects behind.last_img read more

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SIAM hails move to cut GST on electric vehicles chargers

first_imgNew Delhi: Auto industry body SIAM on Saturday said there is a need for a long-term unambiguous electric vehicles (EVs) road map while welcoming reduction in GST on EVs and chargers and reiterated the need for government intervention to stimulate demand to enable the auto industry to overcome the current slowdown. Reacting to the GST council decision to reduce GST rate on EVs from 12 per cent to 5 per cent and EV chargers to 5 per cent from 18 per cent, Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) President Rajan Wadhera said, Over the years, this will help popularise electric vehicles and increase penetration in the country. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalHe further said, “Government’s vision of increasing electric mobility in the country has been acknowledged by GST council by significantly reducing GST rate on electric vehicles. We are thankful to the GST council for accepting these recommendations which were proposed by SIAM in our white paper which was released last year to promote the growth of electric vehicles in India. Wadhera also “pointed out that there is a need for a long term unambiguous EV roadmap”. The automotive industry is currently going through a difficult time and SIAM has requested for government intervention to stimulate demand so that the industry can turn around from the current difficulties, he added.last_img read more

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Centre trying to destabilise nonBJP govts in states Congress

first_imgNawanshahr: Congress leader and Anandpur Sahib MP Manish Tewari on Sunday alleged that the Centre was trying to “destabilise” democratically-elected governments in the states ruled by non-BJP parties. In an apparent reference to the political situation in Karnataka after the ouster of the Congress-JD(S) government, Tewari accused the BJP of “sabotaging” the democratic institutions. Talking to reporters after attending a public meeting in Rupnagar, 40 kilometres from here, the former Union Minister also expressed concern over “mob violence in the name of religion”. He appreciated the concerns voiced by prominent citizens of the country to draw the attention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.last_img read more

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Legacy of river Sarasvati continues to fascinate scholars

first_imgRiver Sarasvati has been an engrossing subject of debate among historians and archaeological experts for more than a century and it continues to stir them intellectually even today. Did the river, along whose banks flourished the Harappan civilization, ever exist? Or was it a reality lost to the posterity after 2000 BCE?It is in this context that one has to view Major General G D Bakshi’s book ‘The Sarasvati Civilization: A Paradigm Shift in Ancient Indian History’, published by Garuda Prakashan and released at a function in New Delhi on July 28 as a seminal contribution to the compendium of scholarly research into a river system that finds frequent mention in early Vedic texts. Also Read – An income drop can harm brainDr Vasant Shinde, Vice Chancellor of Deccan University, in his foreword to Bakshi’s book, said that multidisciplinary academic approaches adopted by scholars and involvement of archaeological agencies over the last decade have resulted in confirmation of the location of the river, which is today named as Ghaggar-Hakra in northwest India. It is now established scientifically that Saraswati river originated in lower Shivalik mountain ranges, running through present-day Punjab, Haryana, Western Rajasthan into Bahawalpur district in Pakistan down to the Kutch part of Gujarat before meeting the Arabian Sea. Also Read – Shallu Jindal honoured with Mahatma AwardAnalysis of recent archaeological data indicates the presence of densely scattered human settlements during the early Harappan (5500 BCE-2600 BCE) and subsequent Harappan periods (2600-2000 BCE) along the banks of the river. But late Harappan settlements (after 1900 BCE) moved away from the main river course, indicating that the river most probably disappeared around 2000 BCE. The quest for a lost river also raises several questions which Bakshi’s book addresses: Who are we as Indians? Who were the Indo-Aryans who have laid the foundation for our present day Hindu culture in India? Were they aliens or indigenous? If aliens, where did they come from? Where is the mythical Aryan homeland? Bakshi’s book assumes significance as it has not only collated data in one place but also incorporates discoveries and scientific data available till date.last_img read more

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IDay A gastronomic tribute

first_imgTri-colour cup cakes Ingredients: Flour 100 gm Breakfast sugar 100 gm Whole eggs 2 no Butter unsalted 100 gm Vanilla extract 2ml Edible colour 1ml For frosting: Cream cheese 100 gm Icing sugar 10 gm Edible colour 02 ml PREPARATIONS: Take a cream cheese into the bowl, put sieved icing (powder) sugar and mix with the help of spatula. Add desired colour and keep a side in cool place. For Cup cake: Take a thawed butter and cream with sugar till fluffy, then put whole egg one by one into the mixture, and mix properly – with vanilla extract and flour mix by cut and fold method. After mixing, separate the mix into two parts and put tricolor into both the mixture. Take the greased mould and put mixture in it, bake at 180 c for about 25 to 30 min. Afterwards, place the hot cup cake on cooling rack and keep aside for cooling. Also Read – An income drop can harm brainPut cream cheese frosting on top of cup cake with the help of piping bag and serve. (Chef Sandeep Kanojia, The Imperial, Delhi)Tiranga paneer tikka Paneer Malai tikka Ingredients: Paneer 250 gms Amul cheese 50 gms Ginger chopped 50 gms Green chilli 20 gms White pepper powder 2 gms Salt to taste Cooking cream 100 ml Hung curd 200 gms Cardamom powder 15 gms Mace powder 5 Preparation: Collect all the ingredients except paneer into mixing bowl and mix well with hand to smooth thick paste. Then, cut paneer slices into desired shape. Afterwards, marinate the whole paste and keep the marinition overnight in the fridge. When you want to make it, cook into tandoor. Also Read – Shallu Jindal honoured with Mahatma AwardPudina Paneer tikka Paneer 250 gms Hung curd 200 gms Mint chutney 40 ml Spinach puree 30 ml Roasted jeera powder 15 gms Garam masala powder 5 gms Lemon juice 30 ml Ginger chopped 25 gms Green chilli chopped 20 gms Preparation: Collect all the ingredients except paneer into mixing bowl. Then, mix all the ingredients well with hand to smooth thick paste. Further, cut paneer to desired shape. Again, marinate the whole paste and keep the marination overnight in the fridge. When you want to make it, cook into tandoor. Kesariya paneer Tikka Paneer 250 gms Amul cheese 50 gms Ginger chopped 50 gms Salt to taste Hung curd 200 gms Cardamom powder 15 gms Mace powder 5 Chilli powder 20 gms Cumin powder 10 gms Garam masala powder 5 gms Saffron as required Preparation For this, you can follow the listed methods to prepare the tikka. (Chef Prem K Pogakula, Executive Chef, The Imperial, Delhi)Tri-colour pasta salad INGREDIENTS Fuseli 150 gm Carrots 1 no Spinach 20 gms Mayonnaise 50 gms Salt and pepper to taste Olive oil 5 ml Preparation After you blanch the pasta till al dante stage, keep aside for cooling. Blanch carrots and spinach separately. Then, take a salad bowl and combine a small portion of boiled pasta with carrot juice and mayonnaise by adding a little bit of salt and pepper. (Same method to be followed to prepare spinach juice). Mix remaining pasta with mayonnaise PRESENTATION: Take a 3 round mould place on a plate and put the pasta in it. Press gently and remove mould. Add few drops of olive oil and garnish with a basil leaf and serve it cold (Chef Tenzin Losel, Executive Sius Chef, Eros, Nehru Place).last_img read more

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Indian ecomm mart set to touch 230 bn by 2028

first_imgNew Delhi: The Indian e-commerce marketsize is likely to reach $230 billion in a decade as it’s outpacing the offline retail segment’s growth, according to a report released on Tuesday. “The Indian e-commerce market is outpacing the offline retail growth and is expected to touch $230 billion by 2028. India is at the cusp of a massive online boom, fueled by low data tariffs, affordable smartphones and growing Internet usage,” the report by the E-Commerce Council of India and ChannelPlay said. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalAccording to the report, another 40-50 crore shoppers are expected to come online in 10 years, joining the nearly 10 crore online shoppers in India. “E-commerce in India has grown beyond the first wave of metro consumers in tier-I cities. It is now rapidly adding millions of buyers from tier-II, III cities and beyond,” it said. According to the report, 89 per cent respondents said neutrality of the marketplace was important as a core principle and it should not have any of its own or related party sellers on the platform.last_img read more

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There will be a new dawn Modi on Chandrayaan2

first_imgBengaluru: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday asked ISRO scientists not to get disheartened by the hurdles in the moon mission Chandrayaan-2 and asserted that there will be a “new dawn”.ISRO’s plan to soft land Chandrayaan-2’s Vikram module on the Lunar surface did not go as per script in the early hours of Saturday, with the lander losing communication with ground stations during its final descent.Addressing the scientists hours after ISRO announced that it had lost communication with the lander, he also said that the country’s determination to land on the moon has become even stronger.”We came very close, but we need to cover more ground…. Learnings from today will make us stronger and better,” he told the scientists, adding, “The best is yet to come in our space programme. India is with you.”Modi had earlier watched the proceedings as the lander began its descent towards the moon surface at an ISRO centre here.last_img read more

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Suicide bomber detonates inside govt building in east Afghanistan

first_imgJalalabad: A suicide bomber has detonated inside a government building in eastern Afghanistan, a provincial official said Wednesday, with casualties feared in the latest violence to hit the war-torn country. Witnesses and an AFP reporter also described hearing gunshots immediately after the blast at the electronic identification registration centre in Jalalabad, capital of Nangarhar province, where both the Taliban and the Islamic State group are active. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from US “Security forces are in the area to rescue the staff,” said provincial spokesman Ataullah Khogyani. No group immediately claimed the attack. It came a day after the Taliban killed nearly 50 people and wounded dozens more in two separate attacks, one near a campaign rally for President Ashraf Ghani in the central province of Parwan, and one in Kabul. The militants have vowed to disrupt the upcoming presidential election, scheduled for September 28. They have also promised more violence after US President Donald Trump called off talks earlier this month seeking a deal that would have allowed Washington to begin withdrawing troops from Afghanistan, the site of America’s longest war.last_img read more

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Syrian refugees struggle financially but happy in Canada Advocates

first_imgVANCOUVER – Many Syrian refugees are struggling to find employment and afford life in Canada, but they are gradually settling in and still happy they came, advocates said.That’s the picture painted by a small survey of 241 Syrian adults who arrived in British Columbia with government assistance over the past two years.Refugee settlement organizations across the country have reported similar challenges and successes for the nearly 52,000 Syrian refugees who arrived in Canada between October 2015 and February 2018.More than half of those surveyed depend on food banks at least once a week, although that figure dropped to 56 per cent from 66 per cent over the last year, according to the report by Immigrant Services Society of B.C.The full-time employment rate has doubled in the past year to 27 per cent, it said.At the same time, 87 per cent say their English has improved and 97 per cent say their children are doing well in school, the report said.Director of settlement services Chris Friesen said given the huge obstacles government-assisted refugees have to overcome to get to Canada, full integration will take longer than two years, so the figures paint an optimistic picture.Government-assisted refugees are selected based on vulnerability, he said. Many spent at least three years in refugee camps and experienced trauma. They tend to have less education, fewer skills, more medical conditions and a weaker support network than privately sponsored refugees in Canada, he said.“Everyone we talked to is determined to give back to this country and the way they can do that is by learning English as quickly as possible, getting a job and paying taxes. That, they see, is their responsibility, and they will go miles to make that happen,” Friesen said.The survey also helped highlight some gaps in support, he said. Some refugees are on wait lists for English-language classes and some need clinical interventions for the trauma they experienced, he said.The report says 11 per cent of those surveyed said their families were depressed and 62 per cent of those same respondents said their emotional health declined over the past year.Fariborz Birjandian, CEO of the Calgary Catholic Immigration Society, said given the massive life change that refugees are undergoing, full settlement and integration shouldn’t be expected immediately.He said some refugees are beginning to adapt to the different family culture in Alberta, especially in terms of new dynamics where women have more rights.More than 65 per cent of government-assisted refugees who arrived in Canada are under 17 years old. They tend to learn languages and adapt to new cultures more quickly than adults, so they are playing an important role in their families integration, he said.“Once they start doing well, the parents will benefit from that,” he said.In Toronto, many refugees are expressing frustration that they can’t find work, said Mario Calla, executive director for COSTI Immigrant Services.“They’re finding learning English is not coming as quickly as they had hoped for and they’re anxious to work,” he said.Frustration is normal and it takes patience to find your place in a new country, he said.“What we’re experiencing overall is what we would expect for any group,” Calla said.Unlike some other refugee groups, he said Syrians have found a strong support network in Toronto because of the huge numbers who settled there. Toronto has the highest influx of Syrian refugees since October 2015, at about 22,000.In Nova Scotia, one challenge has been finding housing for some larger families, while another has been finding supports for refugees with disabilities, said Jennifer Watts, CEO of the Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia.She said support programs to integrate refugees into the work force and promote community connections are widely successful and continue to shift as new needs arise.“This is about continually adapting and understanding what the needs are,” Watts said.last_img read more

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Humboldt Broncos tribute concert raises 428000 for families affected by crash

first_imgTORONTO – Organizers behind the Humboldt Broncos tribute concert say they’ve raised nearly half a million dollars for families affected by the tragic bus crash.The Country Thunder Music Festival says the event in Saskatoon last week brought in $588,120.30 from tickets, raffles and other fundraising efforts.About $428,325.70 will be divided between the 29 families affected by the collision, it said, after covering expenses related to venue staff and production.The Humboldt Broncos tribute was billed as a concert to remember the 16 people who died in the April 6 bus crash. The show included performances from country singers Dallas Smith, Brett Kissel, Chad Brownlee, Gord Bamford, Jess Moskaluke and the Hunter Brothers.Attendance for the concert reached 9,967 people, according to a statement.The show drew some controversy over racial jokes made by its American comedy hosts Bruce Williams and Terry Ree. They later apologized for offending some audience members.The Country Thunder Foundation, which oversaw the money raised for the hockey team, plans to start issuing cheques in the amount of $14,769.85 to each affected family.Other money raised through a 50-50 draw, T-shirt sales and a jersey auction will go to the Humboldt Strong Community Foundation, organizers said.The concert’s fundraising efforts come after a GoFundMe campaign raised nearly $15.2 million for the players and families affected by the crash. The money has been transferred to a new non-profit corporation called the Humboldt Broncos Memorial Fund Inc. and is expected to be distributed in the coming months.Follow @dfriend on Twitter.last_img read more

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Bombardier faces lengthy legal battle with Boeing that could hurt CSeries sales

first_imgMONTREAL – Bombardier faces a lengthy legal battle with Boeing after the aerospace giant filed a complaint with the U.S. government and the process could hurt sales of the new CSeries commercial jet, say trade experts and industry analysts.While the outcome of the case is uncertain, they said the Montreal-based company’s efforts to sell the plane into the American market could be hampered by the prospect of preliminary duties resulting from Boeing’s anti-dumping petition.“Purchasers tend to back away from making commitments until they know the outcome of the proceedings, so I would expect that there will be some form of commercial repercussions,” international trade lawyer Lawrence Herman said in an interview from Toronto.Shares of Bombardier fell four per cent to $2.11 in Toronto on Friday following the news.Boeing petitioned the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. International Trade Commission for investigations into subsidies and pricing of the CSeries.It said more than US$3 billion in government subsidies so far have allowed Bombardier to engage in “predatory pricing” for an aircraft that competes directly against its 737-700 and 737 MAX 7 airplanes. Bombardier and the Canadian government have rejected Boeing’s claims.Herman expects the case could drag on for years even though an investigation and imposition of preliminary duties could known in a few months. Boeing faces a challenge proving its complaints because government funding for the CSeries came in the form of equity rather than traditional subsidies, he said, adding that Boeing has received U.S. government support in the form of research and development grants along with military contracts.Aerospace analyst Richard Aboulafia of the Teal Group called Boeing’s legal approach “ill-advised.”He said the CSeries has a small impact on Boeing’s planes, adding that the argument that the plane was sold well below cost was odd since that’s standard industry practice for new planes.“The impact of the CSeries on their product line is incredibly marginal. It’s the Delta deal and not much else,” he said.Aboulafia also said Boeing could risk an order for its Super Hornet jet fighter by taking on a key sector of the Canadian economy.Herman said Boeing’s move could prompt Airbus to take a similar legal action against Bombardier, adding this could stall CSeries sales in Europe. Airbus declined to comment.Brazil has already filed a complaint about the Canadian government’s support for Bombardier with the World Trade Organization at the urging of rival manufacturer Embraer.McGill University professor Karl Moore said Boeing is taking advantage of President Donald Trump’s approach to trade to take an opportunistic hit at Bombardier, the world’s third-largest aerospace manufacturer.“It’s just the way the game is played these days,” he said from Abu Dhabi. “You rattle your sabre and try to scare customers a bit.”By filing a complaint in the Washington instead of Geneva, Boeing could take a quicker toll on Bombardier, said University of Ottawa professor Patrick Leblond.“A little like the softwood lumber file, we could see the imposition of countervailing duties on Bombardier products,” he said.Boeing’s legal manoeuvre is the latest challenge to Canadian trade with the United States, coming days after the Trump administration criticized Canada’s dairy sector and imposed duties on softwood lumber.The U.S. government’s protectionist tone could make it tough for other Canadian companies as well, said trade lawyer Alan Wolff.“It’s a pro-enforcement administration. That will mean that there’s a greater likelihood of these types of cases being filed,” he said from Washington, D.C.last_img read more

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Rescued British sailor returns to shore plans to race across the Atlantic

first_imgHALIFAX – Mervyn Wheatley arrived on dry ground Tuesday, looking forward to a Halifax lobster lunch, a flight home to his wife, and buying a new sailboat so he can race across the Atlantic again next year.The ruddy-faced 73-year-old British skipper came into port aboard the Queen Mary 2 luxury liner, which plucked him from his storm-wrecked yacht during a transatlantic race on the weekend.Wheatley told reporters he “stood there and laughed” when he was escorted to his opulent stateroom on the massive ocean liner after his ordeal in savage seas.“The contrast between what I had just left, which was a boat in fairly poor condition with water over the floorboards, to this magnificent state room was just surreal,” he said. “There I was in the lap of luxury.”He was met in Halifax Tuesday by Capt. Jonathan Bregman, a pilot with 413 Transport and Rescue Squadron at 14 Wing Greenwood, who had spotted him amid swelling waters and came to give him a keepsake.“It’s not the most difficult mission (I have undertaken) but it was the most dynamic,” said Bregman. “I’ll never forget this mission. I’d like him to remember that we came to provide assistance.”He said he was surprised that Wheatley — one of about two dozen sailors racing from Plymouth, England, to Newport, Rhode Island — was able to survive his ordeal.“I was definitely surprised just given the small size of the vessel out in the middle of the Atlantic, but I guess he’s a capable sailor … He was very well composed.”The race started with 21 entries — 16 solo sailors and five boats with two crew. By Monday, four yachts had been abandoned, one was under tow with a tug and three had been sunk or scuttledWheatley, a former 33-year veteran of the Royal Marines, said he was keen to join the race again next year.He told reporters Tuesday he would return home to tell his wife the story of how he lost the boat.It starts in the early morning hours of last Friday, on Wheatley’s 19th trip across the Atlantic. He was awoken after his sailboat was tossed briefly upside down by a violent storm.For a fleeting moment, as he manually pumped water out of his battered sailboat, Wheatley said he thought about retiring from the sea: “I thought ‘OK that’s it. I won’t do this again.’”The sailboat’s beacon had been ripped off its bracket, automatically sending a distress signal.It’s that signal that would enlist Bregman’s help.“Friday morning at 1 a.m. I was in bed and the phone rang to say that an emergency beacon went off in the middle of the Atlantic,” he said. “I saw that there was a huge storm right over the location.”Bregman took on as much fuel as he could and flew more than four hours to Wheatley’s location.“I heard the drone of an aircraft,” Wheatley said. “I was so relieved I couldn’t even speak on the radio. I was quite surprised how taken aback I was emotionally.”Although a merchant ship responded to the call as well, a rescue under the dark of night with swelling seas was deemed too risky.“This was incomparably worse then what I’ve experienced before,” said Wheatley.”The seas were impressive.”Meanwhile, the Queen Mary 2 had also diverted course to respond. After discussions with the Canadian Coast Guard and the joint rescue co-ordination centre in Halifax, a rescue operation was put in motion.Before taking the leap onto the rescue ship, Wheatley sunk his sailboat.“I realized I was going to have to scuttle the boat,” he said. “I cut through a pipe. I chose quite a thin pipe so it would go quite slowly so I wouldn’t have to watch it sink.”Wheatley estimated it will cost about $135,000 to replace his beloved yacht, Tamarind.The rescue created a buzz aboard the luxury liner.“It was quite an entertaining show for all of us,” said passenger Ben Pollard, 22, of Newcastle, England. “Everyone on deck loved it … and cheered when the captain announced that he was rescued.”Pollard said even aboard the Queen Mary 2 — one of the largest transatlantic ocean liners ever built, complete with 15 restaurants and bars, five swimming pools, a casino and a planetarium — some passengers were seasick in the storm.“The ship was really rocking, so I can’t imagine what it was like for him on that little ship.”Passenger Brian Kerr, of Baltimore, Md., said the cruise ship’s decks were closed during most of the trip.“For the entire crossing over we were in a gale,” he said.“When we were standing on the decks (during the rescue) it was just awful. The sea was up and down and we’re looking at this guy in this yacht going ‘How is he hanging on?’”— With files from Alison Auldlast_img read more

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The text of the speech A Lament for Confederation by Chief Dan

first_imgVANCOUVER – The text of Chief Dan George’s speech “A Lament for Confederation:”How long have I known you, Oh Canada? A hundred years? Yes, a hundred years. And many, many seelanum more. And today, when you celebrate your hundred years, Oh Canada, I am sad for all the Indian people throughout the land.For I have known you when your forests were mine; when they gave me my meat and my clothing. I have known you in your streams and rivers where your fish flashed and danced in the sun, where the waters said ‘come, come and eat of my abundance.’ I have known you in the freedom of the winds. And my spirit, like the winds, once roamed your good lands.But in the long hundred years since the white man came, I have seen my freedom disappear like the salmon going mysteriously out to sea. The white man’s strange customs, which I could not understand, pressed down upon me until I could no longer breathe.When I fought to protect my land and my home, I was called a savage. When I neither understood nor welcomed his way of life, I was called lazy. When I tried to rule my people, I was stripped of my authority.My nation was ignored in your history textbooks — they were little more important in the history of Canada than the buffalo that ranged the plains. I was ridiculed in your plays and motion pictures, and when I drank your fire-water, I got drunk — very, very drunk. And I forgot.Oh Canada, how can I celebrate with you this centenary, this hundred years? Shall I thank you for the reserves that are left to me of my beautiful forests? For the canned fish of my rivers? For the loss of my pride and authority, even among my own people? For the lack of my will to fight back? No! I must forget what’s past and gone.Oh God in heaven! Give me back the courage of the olden chiefs. Let me wrestle with my surroundings. Let me again, as in the days of old, dominate my environment. Let me humbly accept this new culture and through it rise up and go on.Oh God! Like the thunderbird of old I shall rise again out of the sea; I shall grab the instruments of the white man’s success — his education, his skills, and with these new tools I shall build my race into the proudest segment of your society. Before I follow the great chiefs who have gone before us, Oh Canada, I shall see these things come to pass.I shall see our young braves and our chiefs sitting in the houses of law and government, ruling and being ruled by the knowledge and freedoms of our great land. So shall we shatter the barriers of our isolation. So shall the next hundred years be the greatest in the proud history of our tribes and nations.last_img read more

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Communities in BC brace for wildfire evacuation orders as weather turns

first_imgWILLIAMS LAKE (NEWS 1130) – Officials are preparing for more evacuation alerts and orders as wildfires in British Columbia risk worsening this weekend.Williams Lake Mayor Walt Cobb says crews are ensuring routes are clear and buses are ready if the city’s 11,000 residents are suddenly forced to leave.“We’re ready for it, we’re expecting that if the wind comes up like indicated, it’s a possibility that we will have to go to the next step but right now we’re just on alert and we’re hoping for the best,” he says.Lightening and strong winds are in the forecast and could fuel the dozens of fires burning across the province, three of which surround Williams Lake.The BC Wildfire Service says it’s taken steps to help ground crews fight some of the fires, by burning a safe perimeter around a 2,600-hectare blaze near 150 Mile House.Chief Fire Information Officer Kevin Skrepnek says winds could reach 70 kilometres an hour in parts of the southern interior.“That level of wind certainly has the prospect to really whip up fire behaviour, so of course that is cause for concern given the amount of fire we have through the southern part of the province right now.”Unfavourable conditions mean extra precautions need to be taken to avoid further fires from being sparked, so he’s also urging people to stay out of the back country where possible.More than 16,000 people have had to evacuate their homes because of fires. It’s still too soon to tell when they might be able to return home, but with fires still threatening entire communities, the number of evacuees is expected to rise.Dave Dixon – who’s managing emergency social services in the Williams Lake region – says more than 200 people have registered in case new evacuation orders force people living there to leave.“We have had some people just checking out things, seeing how things are going. We have some people coming in inquiring, and something sort of unique that we see is when they do come in, they say ‘hey, can we volunteer?’ So that’s really a positive. ”The service is asking people to stay away from the backcountry to avoid triggering human-caused fires.Officials are also asking the public to stay off four lakes in the Cariboo region, specifically Williams Lake, Watson Lake, Lac La Hache and Horse Lake, so that firefighting aircraft have room to pick up water.On Friday evening, Emergency Info BC issued its first evacuation order since Wednesday.People in the Loon Lake area of the Thompson-Nicola Regional District were ordered to evacuate the area, and an evacuation alert was issued for the Village of Clinton.Village officials warned that residents should prepare for an evacuation order, noting that the fire was headed their way and “poses an imminent threat to people and property.”last_img read more

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Edmonton police investigate theft of plaques that mark Canadas military history

first_imgEDMONTON – Edmonton police are investigating the theft of metal plaques from a city neighbourhood that honour military heroes and some of the grimmest battles from Canada’s history.The Griesbach Community League says more than 15 metal plaques have been removed from the residential community that used be an army base.Some of the plaques tell the stories of soldiers from Alberta who were awarded the Victoria Cross, the highest military decoration for gallantry.Another tells the story of the Second World War battle of Ortona, a bloody battle for a town in Italy that cost Canada more than 2,300 casualties, including troops from the Loyal Edmonton Regiment.One of the plaques has information about the involvement of Canadian soldiers in the First World War battle of the Somme in France.Brad Tilley, president of the Griesbach Community League, says the plaques were pryed off their stands and people are worried the thieves will melt them down for scrap.“As a community, we are devastated,” Tilley said Tuesday in a release.“Residents take great pride in our neighbourhood’s unique character and the ways it remembers those who sacrificed so much for our country. It is an absolutely senseless and disrespectful crime.”There is hope the plaques will be recovered and can be reinstalled.Tilley said veterans and their families visit the community to view the plaques and pay tribute to the soldiers.“It is a real dishonour to those who have served. There are still several plaques within the community. We hope they don’t try to come back to get these as well.”last_img read more

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BCs wildfire season surpasses 1958 record for amount of land burned

first_imgKAMLOOPS, B.C. – British Columbia’s wildfires have destroyed a record amount of forest, brush and grassland, surpassing the devastation of nearly 60 years ago.Kevin Skrepnek with the BC Wildfire Service said about 8,944 square kilometres have been scorched by fires, breaking the previous record of 8,550 square kilometres, set in 1958.With no rain in the forecast for the wildfire-ravaged southern parts of the province, Skrepnek said more land will be burned.“Temperatures should be relatively seasonal going forward, so that’s one silver lining,” he said. “But the presence of wind and the lack of rain are going to be much more critical factors.”A total of 1,029 fires have occurred since the April 1 start of the wildfire season, and 149 of them are still burning.A fire that destroyed dozens of homes near Ashcroft six weeks ago has now consumed even more structures in the Green Lake area almost 100 kilometres away.Thompson-Nicola Regional District spokeswoman Debbie Sell said crews have not been able to access the site to determine exactly what has been lost as the active blaze that is more than 1,600 square kilometres in size continues to pose a danger.Sell said affected property owners will be contacted as soon as specifics of damage are available.Agriculture officials at the federal and provincial government levels are also working to tally damages that farmers and ranchers have suffered as a result of the fires.Federal Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay and B.C. counterpart Lana Popham met in Victoria on Tuesday.Popham said she understands people are facing “extraordinary costs” after their land, equipment, crop and livestock were destroyed and both levels of governments are working as quickly as possible to deliver help.“One of the things we’re realizing is that the losses of farms and equipment is very much weighing on our farmers, but the emotional toll is enormous,” she said.The extra help could cover everything from costs related to feeding, sheltering, transporting and ensuring the health of livestock to the expenses of re-establishing crops and pastures wiped out by the fires.The exact amount the government will spend on these programs is still being calculated, but Popham said it will be in the millions of dollars.RCMP are continuing to investigate human-caused fires and suspected arson.Spokeswoman Dawn Roberts said charges against four males, all under the age of 18, are pending after a fire was set in a suburb of Williams Lake.She said the men are also believed to be connected with a series of break-and-enters in the area that happened at the same time.A trailer home that was destroyed in a fire 40 kilometres east of Alexis Creek has also been deemed a suspicious occurrence.Roberts said the owner was located unharmed and the fire didn’t spread to the surrounding area.(The Canadian Press, CHNL)last_img read more

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MNP selected to review death of boxer after bout in Edmonton in

first_imgEDMONTON – Edmonton officials say consulting firm MNP has been selected to review the death of a boxer after a fight in the city earlier this year.Tim Hague, a teacher and former mixed martial arts fighter, died in hospital in June, two days after losing a match to Adam Braidwood.The city says the review will examine the relevant facts of the match and is to make recommendations to improve safety at future fights.It says its staff worked with the Edmonton Combative Sports Commission — which is appointed by council and sanctioned the match — to choose MNP.The review will begin immediately and is to be completed later this fall.The city says the recommendations will be made public.“Given the high importance of this matter, we have taken the time needed to ensure the review process is fair and objective and supports our commitment to improve safety at future combative sports events,” Rob Smyth, deputy city manager of citizen services, said in a news release Friday.Hague, 34, listed as six-foot-four and 264 pounds, was able to leave the ring under his own power but was soon rushed to hospital. He underwent brain surgery but died two days later.Hague fought under the nickname the Thrashing Machine in mixed martial arts before turning to boxing. He was a heavy underdog who accepted the fight against Braidwood, a former CFL player, on only two weeks of notice.He was knocked down three times in the first round against Braidwood, and referee Len Koivisto stopped the bout after two more knockdowns in the second round.Hague had been knocked out in his previous boxing match in December.last_img read more

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BC man who saved overdose victims life urges people to know how

first_imgVANCOUVER – Kevin Yake remembers the overwhelming relief of saving the life of a young man who’d overdosed on fentanyl-laced heroin, and he’s grateful he knew what to do.“I think about that a lot,” he said Thursday, recalling the day in early 2015 when he saw the man in his early 20s slumped over a table at an overdose prevention site located at the office of the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users.“He was going quite grey and blue rather quickly so I yelled out, ‘OD, OD, OD!’ ” said Yake, who injected two doses of the overdose-reversing medication naloxone into the muscular part of the man’s right arm.Yake, who was a board member of the group he now leads, said he’d received training to use naloxone about seven months before that nerve-wracking incident when fentanyl was becoming a culprit in a growing number of overdose deaths.Yake said the overdose crisis means anyone who knows an illicit drug user should also know how to use naloxone.The Mental Health and Addictions Ministry says 114,170 kits have been distributed since 2012 through pharmacies, public health units and community agencies that work with drug users.“I kept thinking, ‘What if we didn’t have it?’ ” Yake said. “And just the feeling that somebody’s life was in my hands.”British Columbia’s largest health authority is also urging people to ensure they know how to use naloxone.Dr. Aamir Bharmal, medical health officer of Fraser Health, said family members or friends of someone who uses illicit opioids may have picked up a naloxone kit but they need to practise how to administer the potentially life-saving drug.Nearly 62,000 kits were handed out last year alone, when 1,450 people in B.C. fatally overdosed on opioids, such as heroin, fentanyl and oxycodone.The kits include three one-milligram ampules of the medication, along with a syringe and a breathing mask to provide an overdose victim with breaths if they are unresponsive.“People may have received a kit or picked up a kit months or even years ago and they may not have had an opportunity to use it,” Bharmal said. “Just like we do for first aid or for fire drills, we want to make sure people have a refresher so they know what to do.”Bharmal said Fraser Health will hold practice drills for its staff next week to refresh their skills and also encourages the public to join an online demonstration on its Facebook page on Monday afternoon. Experts will be available to answer questions and provide information as part of the health authority’s activities leading to International Overdose Awareness Day on Aug. 31.Bharmal said anyone who witnesses an overdose should call an ambulance before administering naloxone.He encouraged those with naloxone kits to watch an online video that provides step-by-step instructions using the acronym SAVE ME. It stands for stimulating a person who may have overdosed to try and wake them; clearing the airway of any food or other content; ventilating the person by providing one breath every five seconds; evaluating the situation to determine if breathing has improved; injecting a dose of the medicine into a large muscle and evaluating again.Breaths should be administered using the breathing mask in the kit. It is placed over the face as one breath is given every five seconds to prevent brain damage due to lack of oxygen.Naloxone typically works in three to five minutes but a second or even third dose may be required.On the web: http://www.naloxonetraining.com/training/save-me-steps— Follow @CamilleBains1 on Twitter.last_img read more

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Former ski coach Bertrand Charest seeks to have sentence halved by appeal

first_imgMONTREAL – Former national ski coach Bertrand Charest is seeking to have his sexual-assault sentence reduced by at least half.In a recent filing with Quebec’s Court of Appeal, Charest’s lawyers argue the 12-year sentence he received last December should be cut to between four and six years.Charest’s lawyers say some acts like kissing were inappropriate but less invasive than other acts for which he was found guilty. The less invasive acts were nonetheless treated harshly by the judge at sentencing, they say.Charest was found guilty in June 2017 of 37 of the 57 sex-related charges he faced involving nine of the 12 women who had accused him of crimes that occurred more than 20 years ago.The women were between the ages of 12 and 19, and he was overseeing their careers.In the case of the three other women, he was either acquitted or the charges were dropped because of jurisdictional issues.He had sexual relations with four of the victims and one became pregnant, with Charest taking her to have an abortion.Several victims went to court this year to have their identities revealed so they could speak publicly about the abuse they suffered.Charest’s lawyers were also critical of the judge for citing an absence of remorse and denial of responsibility as aggravating factors.The trial judge was skeptical about Charest’s expressed remorse, but his legal team argues in the document he can’t be blamed for defending himself and maintaining his version of what happened.Charest, who has been behind bars since his arrest in 2015, is also appealing the convictions.last_img read more

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