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MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

Stage set for repatriation of 150 runaway Filipino maids

Two policemen shot as new Italian govt takes office


NO: 15793

150 FILS




Mississippi man charged in suspicious letters case

Van Persie returns to punish Arsenal



Deportation of expats not random: Minister Ex-MP wins case for dissolving assembly

Max 36º Min 18º High Tide 02:42 & 13:25 Low Tide 08:08 & 21:01

By B Izzak conspiracy theories

Military atmosphere By Badrya Darwish


feel really sorry for the expats. They are what an Arabic proverb says: “Trapped between the rock and a hard place.” If they get away and are saved from the latest rules and regulations set by the new lady Minister of Social Affairs and Labour Thekra AlRashidi then they might face another fiasco of measures issued by the Ministry of Interior and applied only to expats. It is like a mousetrap. Every day we read in the newspapers or we hear about expat innovations. It is as if the government and MPs jointly have nothing else to worry about except expats. I call this the new game! The Honourable Gentlemen are hand in hand with the government against the expats as a quick fix solution to the problems in Kuwait. For instance, if they think about the traffic problems and the congestion on the roads, immediately nobody thinks of anything else but of expats. Everyone becomes so creative to give suggestions on how to punish expats and how to even withdraw licences of those who had a licence. According to the new law, driving licences will be issued only to people whose university degrees match the careers they are in. May I know, what does a university degree have to do with a driving licence? Maybe I want to have the designation of a salesman in my work permit? Does a salesman then have to get a university degree? Every salesman needs a car. In my experience those who really need a driving licence in their jobs have lower degrees. If you have agreed previously to give someone a licence it is not a convincing reason to deprive him of it. I have said it million times before. This is not the way to solve the traffic problem in Kuwait. The new campaign targets impounding expat vehicles unfit for the road. Though this regulation has been in force for a while, it has not been applied as vigorously as today. Every street and corner has now a checkpoint. If there is a car on the road which is obviously blowing too much gas or has a broken light the police have the right to stop the driver and get the vehicle off the streets. Otherwise you do not have to stop and fine people on flimsy grounds and use them as an excuse. For instance, crossing the red light is a crime, according to me, because it could kill people. Such offences should also be studied on a case by case basis because not everyone crossed the red light for fun. Someone told me that once a fire brigade was behind him and he was forced to cross the red light. Another driver told me that a big jeep was behind him speeding like a rocket. The driver saw in the rearview mirror that the car behind him was not going to stop so he was forced to cross the red light. Common sense should prevail and there should be justice. It is easy to sign a paper and deport people but fair is fair. Is it proper for Kuwait to empty the country of people? Every country needs marginal labour. Reducing the number of expats is the right of the government and parliament if they think that we Kuwaitis can replace these jobs. Countries do not run like this. Start training our boys and girls from scratch for these jobs, which by the way might take many years. Then start replacing the work force. Do not do this at random. This will harm Kuwait. As it is economy-wise the situation is not brilliant. Seminars, conferences and debates should be held with participants from all walks of life. These events should demonstrate the minuses and pluses. Then we can research what our boys and girls are trained to do. Do not carry the axe on expats. We are not in a war zone. After all they are human beings. Do not scare them and terrorize them. You need them to work. People cannot work properly in a military atmosphere.

ANKARA: His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah carries a child during a dinner banquet that was hosted by Kuwait Ambassador to Turkey Abdullah Abdulaziz Al-Thowaikh in honor of HH the Amir and his accompanying delegation on the occasion of his visit to Turkey yesterday. — KUNA (See Page 3)

KUWAIT: Minister of Social Affairs and Labour Thekra Al-Rasheedi said yesterday that a proposed plan to reduce the number of expatriates in the country by one million over the next 10 years “will not be random and will spare highly-skilled manpower”. The plan, announced by the minister last month, stipulates to reduce the number of expatriates by 100,000 every year for the next 10 years with the final target to cut one million expatriates from the current number of 2.6 million. “This does not mean random deportation but regulating and organizing expatriate manpower. Kuwait doors will remain open for experts, advisors, consultants and highly-skilled people. Deportation is only intended for ‘marginal laborers’ who have no work, the minister said at a local function. Rasheedi had never spelt out the measures that would be taken to achieve the goals but she had already ordered some constraints on the recruitment of expatriate labor and on the transfer of visas into work permits. But reports have linked between actions by the traffic department of deporting expatriates for serious traffic offences and Rasheedi’s statements. Two weeks ago, the National Assembly approved amendments to the labor law that allows for the establishment of a public authority for manpower which will be entrusted in the recruitment of workers from abroad. In another development, the appeals court yesterday ordered in the first ruling of its kind the prime minister to compensate former MP Mohammad Hayef for damages he sustained from dissolving the 2012 National Assembly, the ex-MP lawyer Adel Abdulhadi said. The constitutional court last year ordered the dissolution of the opposition-dominated assembly on the grounds of procedural mistakes regarding the Amiri decree that called for fresh general election in February. The invitation to fresh election came after His Highness the Amir dissolved the 2009 assembly in December 2011. The issuance of the Amiri decree triggered off a constitutional controversy in whether the decree violated the constitution or not. About four months after the February 2012 election, which were swept by the opposition, the constitutional court declared the polls as illegal and ordered the new assembly dissolved. Continued on Page 15

Iraq pulls licenses of Al-Jazeera, 9 TVs BAGHDAD: Iraqi authorities announced yesterday that they had revoked the operating licenses of pan-Arab broadcaster Al-Jazeera and nine other satellite TV channels, alleging that they are promoting a sectarian agenda as the country grapples with a wave of violence. The move, effective immediately, comes as Baghdad tries to quell rising unrest in the country following clashes at a protest camp last week. More than 180 people have been killed in gunbattles with security forces and other attacks since the unrest began Tuesday. The violence follows more than four months of largely peaceful protests by Iraq’s Sunni Muslim minority against the Shiite-domi-

nated government. Al-Jazeera, based in Qatar, said it was “astonished” by the move. “We cover all sides of the stories in Iraq, and have done for many years. The fact that so many channels have been hit all at once though suggests this is an indiscriminate decision,” it said in an emailed statement. “We urge the authorities to uphold freedom for the media to report the important stories taking place in Iraq,” it added. The channel has aggressively covered the “Arab Spring” uprisings across the region, and has broadcast extensively on the civil war in neighboring Syria. Qatar itself is a harsh critic of the Syrian regime and a leading

backer of the rebels, and is accused by many supporters of Iraq’s Shiite-led government of backing protests in Iraq too. Iraq and other governments across the Middle East have temporarily shut down Al-Jazeera’s offices in the past because they were disgruntled by its coverage. The other nine channels whose licenses were suspended by Iraq’s Communications and Media Commission are Al-Sharqiya and Al-Sharqiya News, which frequently criticize the government, and seven smaller local channels Salahuddin, Fallujah, Taghyeer, Baghdad, Babiliya, Anwar 2 and Al-Gharbiya. Continued on Page 15

Algerian president in Paris after stroke PARIS: Algeria’s President Abdelaziz news agency APS, explaining that “no Bouteflika was “responding well” in a sensory function was impaired.” The Paris hospital yesterday after suffering a office of Prime Minister Abdelmalek mini-stroke that has raised doubts Sellal said in a statement yesterday that about his ability to govern less than a tests undergone at the hospital had year before a presidential election. confirmed there were “no worries” over The 76-year-old, in powhis state of health. er since 1999, suffered a But according to the “transient ischaemia” website of the American Saturday and was flown to Heart Association, a tranParis where he was driven sient ischaemia attack “is under army escort to the more accurately characVal de Grace military hospiterised as a ‘warning stroke’, tal, which often treats higha warning you should take profile patients. Officials in very seriously”. Algeria were quick to allay Saturday’s late-breaking fears over his condition, but news made headlines in the media raised fresh Algeria, where Bouteflika’s questions about his health, health has sparked much which has been an endless Abdelaziz Bouteflika speculation amid doubts source of speculation since over the official version of 2005 when he had surgery in Paris. events. “The very idea that this news is Rachid Bougherbal, director of made public is in itself a media shock,” Algeria’s National Sports Medicine wrote the francophone daily Liberte. Centre, said the “transient ischaemia”-a “ This time the presidency has temporary blockage of blood flow to judged the incident to be serious the brain often called a “mini-stroke”- enough not to hide it from the Algerian ”did not last long”. Bouteflika “did not people.” Elected in 1999 and re-elected suffer irreversible damage” and was in 2004 and 2009 thanks to a “responding well”, he told the state Continued on Page 15

ALEPPO: A Syrian victim who suffered an alleged chemical attack at Khan AlAssal village according to SANA, receives treatment by doctors, at a hospital in Aleppo, Syria. — AP

Obama under pressure to take action on Syria WASHINGTON: Republican senators yesterday pressed US President Barack Obama to intervene in Syria’s civil war, saying America could attack Syrian air bases with missiles but should not send in ground troops. Pressure is mounting on the White House to do more to help Syrian rebels fighting against the government of President Bashar Al-Assad, which the Obama administration last week said had probably used chemical arms in the

conflict. Neutralizing the government forces’ air advantage over the rebels “could turn the tide of battle pretty quickly,” Republican Senator Lindsey Graham told CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “One way you can stop the Syrian air force from flying is to bomb the Syrian air bases with cruise missiles,” the South Carolina senator said. Continued on Page 15

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Stage set for repatriation of 150 runaway maids 601 Filipinas repatriated during first quarter of 2013 By Ben Garcia KUWAIT: A total of 150 Filipino runaway housemaids are set for mass repatriation between May 9 and May 23, embassy officials announced at a press conference yesterday. Both, Kuwait and the Philippine governments agreed to the mass repatriation as part of strengthening bilateral cooperation. The Philippine Embassy ’s shelter (Filipino Worker Resource Center) in Faiha houses hundreds of runaway housemaids who have sought refuge there after running away from their employers. Most of their complaints registered at the embassy were to do with non-payment of salaries, maltreatment etc. The mass repatriation move was secured jointly by the newly designated Consul General of the Philippines to Kuwait, Raul Dado, with the support of Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) head, David Des Dicang. “After a meeting with Gen Abdullah Al-Ali Chief of the Office of Domestic Workers Affairs, he directed the repatriation of our runaway housemaids living in the shelter, especially those against whom there were no pending cases. It was a goodwill gesture and they will be repatriated in batches of 50 each on May 9, 16 and 23 respectively,” he said. “A ver y great thanks to the Kuwait Ministry of Interior for the warm gesture bestowed upon our kababayans (countrymen) who are waiting to be repatriated for

quite sometime,” Dado disclosed. Dado who earlier remained a Consul General in Macau for three years, also served as a diplomat in Buenos Aires, Argentina and Laos. Philippine Labor Attache to Kuwait David Des Dicang, meanwhile, reported that during the first quarter of 2013, Embassy’s Overseas Labor Office (POLO) and O verseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) managed to repatriate 601 distressed household workers between January and April. “Based on our record, from January 1 to April 23, we managed to send home a total of 601 runaway housemaids, of which 272 were cases involving retrieval of passport from employers, since there were only minor cases. These maids went back to the Philippines through normal flights. Then, there are 65 housemaids who were repatriated through the immigration department and 174 through police authorities,” he added. As of April 23, a total of 195 distressed female workers remain at the Household Service Workers ward under the care of POLO/OWWA, currently, there are about 34 OFWs who are now under the care of Kuwait’s Social Welfare Agency which is unofficially open but will be formally opening very soon. To this date, according to Dicang, of the 195 remaining Filipinas at the shelter, 31 have faced physical and sexual abuse, while 17 were facing a trav-

Travel season kicks off in Kuwait By Navarra Fattahova

KUWAIT: Philippine Consul General Raul Dado (seated right) and Filipino Labor Attache David Des Dicang at a press conference yesterday.— Photo by Ben Garcia el ban. The Ministry of Interior will housemaids escape from their help facilitate immediate repatria- employer’s house in Kuwait every tion of 150 housemaids, an exer- working day of the week while 12 cise which would normally take to 14 on an average on Fridays weeks or even months under reg- and Saturdays. “So while we are regularly repaular repatriation procedures, but this time will only take up to five triating Filipinos, we are also days. The embassy has already receiving runaway housemaids received notices from the office of regularly. In fact, to help us more General Adnan, head of Finger in attending to the OFWs’ needs, Print Division, Criminal Evidence we are also requesting for support Depar tment at the Ministr y of from OWWA fund especially for Interior, regarding the mass-repa- legal assistance, not just to the ATNU cases, but also in some labor triation schedule. Asked if the Kuwaiti govern- related cases,” he added. Dicang also lauded the continment will provide air tickets for the domestic helpers, he said: ues improvement in teamwork “This time, no, since they will be and cooperation received from provided with the air tickets by the Embassy’s sub-agencies, especially during the arrival of newly their employers and agencies.” An average of six to seven designated Consul General Dado.

Agility Tree Planting 2013.

‘Arab Intellectual Capital’ conference kicks off

Ali Mikail planting a tree.

Agility employees at MRC.

Plastics recycling competition winning team.

Agility marks Earth Day with environment awareness activities KUWAIT: Agility Kuwait marked the 43rd global Earth Day with different activities to build environmental awareness among its employees. These included a plastic recycling competition, tree planting and a tour of the Agility subsidiar y, Metal & Recycling Co. (MRC.) Over 200 Agility employees participated in these Earth Day activities. In the plastic recycling competition, employees grouped into teams to collect plastic items that would ordinarily end up in a landfill, and instead segregated them for recycling. Together the teams collected more than 700 kilograms of plastics that were picked up by MRC and will be recycled at MRC’s facilities in Amghara. Awareness begins at home and what better way to learn about recycling than a visit to MRC. Employees from Agility and its subsidiary GCC Services, spent an insightful morning at MRC learning

about how plastics and metals collected by MRC are recycled into plastic pellets or crushed into bales for export and reuse by MRC. Employees were also treated to a view of an enormous metal shredder in action, where large metal items, including whole vehicles, are shredded into small, segregated pieces in a matter of minutes. The metallic remains of these large objects are segregated by MRC and fed back into manufacturing supply chains as recycled metals. Strongly committed to giving back, Agility employees also planted close to 750 trees lining the road outside their head office premises. These trees will soon be absorbing lots of CO2 and giving off fresh oxygen. All employees that participated received notebooks made from used paper. This re-use of paper will help conserve some trees from other locations too. Ali Mikail, Agility’s Senior Vice

President of Kuwait and Levant operations explained: “In our seventh year marking global Earth Day in Kuwait, we focused on activities that build awareness and help in protecting our environment. By doing this we not only contribute to the environment but also promote team building and employee collaboration.” The Earth Day activities in Kuwait are a part of a wider network of activities around Agility’s globally located offices. Agility employees from all around the world participate in different Earth Day activities in an effort to maintain the environment and give back to the communities in which we live and work. Agility brings efficiency to supply chains in some of the globe’s most challenging environments, offering unmatched personal service, a global footprint and customized capabilities in developed and developing economies

KUWAIT: People have already started booking their summer holiday trips as the travel season kicks off. Different travellers have different needs and they choose their travel destinations according to their desires and budgets. Visa recently published its Global Travel Intentions Study 2013, which revealed that global cross-border tourism is thriving and travellers intend to increase the budget for their next trip by an average of five percent, with some holidaymakers even suggesting that they would spend more than double of what they spent on their previous trip. The study surveyed 12,631 travellers from 25 countries, and showed that the average global travel budget per trip is set to increase, with Saudi Arabians being the top spenders. Visaís regular barometer of travel trends indicates that budget is no longer among the top three factors that determine travellersí holiday destinations. Popular attractions, natural scenery and rich culture are now the top three factors. The study revealed that the United States ranked as the most popular destination choice for global travellers over the past two years, as well as in 2013. Regional travel is set to increase, with Egypt, Turkey and France emerging as the most preferred destinations for prospective tourists from Middle East and Africa.† According to the study, among travellers across the four global regions (Asia Pacific, the Americas, Middle East and Africa, and Europe), respondents from the Middle East and Africa (MEA) ñ particularly †residents of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates ñ indicated a strong intention (76 percent probability) to travel more in the future. Much of this increased travel is expected to take place within MEA and Asia, with 24 percent of travellers there having chosen to take foreign trips over the past two years. Travellers from the MEA are spending an average of USD 218 per day during their trip, which is slightly lower than the global average of USD 239 per day. Sergio, an expat and father of two, expressed his disagreement with the notion that budget is not a priority while choosing travel destinations. He said he thought budget was always an

important factor while deciding on personal and family trips. ìFor a business trip, when somebody is sponsoring it, I can talk about other factors such as attraction or scenery. I can only choose a destination that is suitable for my budget, as my income is not big. Iím not willing to increase the budget of travelling this year. Unfortunately, I have to pay for the trip from my current savings, and we will travel to my home country, Philippines,î he told the Kuwait times. Khalid, another expat, is planning to travel to China along with his friend this year. ìThis trip will be business and pleasure. China is cheap, and what I spent last year while travelling to Europe was much more than what I plan to spend this year. What I can survive on in the Far East for ten days, I end up spending in Europe in just two. This year, I have already booked a four-star hotel in China that will cost $ 400 for eight days. In Europe, the same accommodation could have cost many times more,î he pointed out. Cost is the first factor for those with a limited budget. Rabab, an Egyptian expat, intends to go to Dubai this summer. ìI plan to travel for about four days, and I am planning to spend between KD 300 to 400. I chose Dubai since it is nearby, the weather is nice, and one can go shopping, which I like the most. The budget is the main factor in my choice of the destination. Had I had a bigger budget, I would have chosen Europe. I prefer Dubai, Bahrain and Malaysia, in general. In Egypt, the situation is bad, and we no more go there now. I doubt if it will be a desired destination this year,î she explained. Salem, a 30-year-old Kuwaiti, thinks that the cost of travelling has increased internationally, and that is likely to make people increase their travel budget. ìI am not a frequent traveller, and I donít usually plan my travel, though my friends sometimes make plans and ask me and I end up joining them. I donít have problem paying. I do have my business but I am not very rich; at the same time, I can afford travelling. The budget is the most important factor for most people, but I mostly care about what I look for in any trip. My preferred destination is Miami in the USA, but I intend to go for Hajj this year and only then will I plan other trips,î stressed Salem

alike. Agility is one of the world’s leading providers of integrated logistics. It is a publicly traded company with $4.8 billion in revenue and more than 22,000 employees in 500 offices across 100 countries. Agility’s core commercial business, Global Integrated Logistics (GIL), provides supply chain solutions to meet traditional and complex customer needs. GIL offers air, ocean and road freight forwarding, warehousing, distribution, and specialized services in project logistics, fairs and events, and chemicals. Agility’s Infrastructure group of companies manages industrial real estate and offers logistics-related services, including e-government customs optimization and consulting, waste management and recycling, aviation and ground-handling services, support to governments and ministries of defense, remote infrastructure and life support.

MUSCAT: The 1st Arab Conference on “Arab Intellectual Capital: Towards a New Strategic Vision for Investment and Development”, kicked off here yesterday. The conference is held under the patrongae of Sheikh Khalid bin Omar AlMarhoon, Civil Service Minister, Chairman IPA Board of Directors. The three -day Conference is aimed to present and discuss a number of topics including the Basic concepts of intellectual capital, future vision, methods and policies of investment in intellectual capital, paths to creativity and innovation, competition strategy on the basis of intellectual capital and the relationship between education, training and intellectual capital, Development and Capacity Building. The Conference will include four themes, namely “The Basic Concepts of Intellectual Capital: Future

Vision”, “Modern Management of Intellectual Capital: Paths to Creativity and Innovation”, “Measuring Intellectual Capital: Reference of Measurement” and “ Requirements of maximization of the Benefits of Intellectual Capital in the Arab States: outlook”. Dr. Sulaiman bin Hilal al-Alawi, IPA Director General and General Supervisor of the Conference said that the importance of this Conference stems from the importance of intellectual capital and its contribution to excellence in all its forms and types, thus contributing to economic, social and scientific development of the communities. He noted that the Conference will highlight the importance of intellectual capital as the most important resource of all States, and the main tool for achieving its development. —KUNA

Kuwaiti author wins Qatar award DOHA: Kuwaiti author Umaymah Al-Essa has been crowned the winner of the State Prize for Children’s Literature in the field of children’s book illustration for her story “Solomon (peace be upon him) and the Smart Ant.” Hisham Hussein of Egypt has won the award equally in the field of children’s book illustration for his story “ The Bird and Broken Wing,” announced the committee of the trustees of the State Prize for Children’s Literature. Speaking to KUNA following the winning of the Qatari prize, Al-Essa said she had taken the story from the Holy Quran in order to help children understand the meaning of its verses and learn great lessons from it. She said the main message of her story is to urge children to love the Creator and

His prophets, and to recognize His ability to grant the prophets miracles, including those of Solomon (peace be upon him). “Solomon (peace be upon him) and the Smart Ant” is the story of Prophet Solomon (peace be upon him) and the smart ant that saved the valley of ants from destruction. It talks of the mercy shown by Solomon (peace be upon him) after he heard its words, which made him smile and laugh. The winning story is also intended to make children learn from the qualities of ants, primarily cooperation and work activity, Al-Essa added. The award is aimed at encouraging the Arabic book to contribute to the production of literary works, to deepen the values of writing and reading to the child, and foster a spirit of tolerance. — KUNA

EU urged to play active role to resolve Syrian crisis BRUSSELS: Senior officials from the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and the 27-member European Union ended here over the weekend their political dialogue after addressing the latest regional and international developments. The political dialogue with the Europeans was “successful” and the meeting also prepared for the EU-GCC ministerial meeting to be held in Bahrain on 1 July, Ambassador

Hamad Ahmed Abdulaziz Al-Amer, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bahrain, who chaired the dialogue from the GCC side said. The discussions, he noted, covered the Syrian crisis, the Palestine question, Yemen and the GCC initiative and Iran. “ The issue of Iran occupied a greater part of the discussions in this dialogue for different reasons, “ he said. Al-Amer said the reasons includ-

ed the Iranian occupation of the UAE islands and the security and environmental threat to the Gulf region and the world from its nuclear programme. Referring to the recent quake that struck the region in Bushehr where Iran’s nuclear plant is located, the Bahraini official said the GCC sent a team to the IAEA in Vienna to discuss the issue and asked them to send a delegation to Tehran to look at the

security aspect of this nuclear plant. “The other problem is Iran’s interference in the Gulf region in particular in Bahrain, “he stressed. At the meeting , Bahrain presented a report with figures , photos and videos which showed the violence and terrorist acts being committed in the country. Al-Amer said the European side showed understanding of the GCC positions and they promised to study

the new information on Bahrain that has reached them. On Syria, he said no doubt both sides share a common position, “but we want activation from the European side because the Syrian people are suffering a lot. The international community is not doing anything. Therefore we stressed that there should be strong European pressure and Europe must play an active role to end the crisis in Syria,” he added. — KUNA

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


‘New stage of cooperation’

Amir leaves for Turkey KUWAIT: His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah and the delegation accompanying him left here yesterday for the Republic of Turkey on an official visit. He was seen off at the airport by His Highness the deputy Amir and Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, National Assembly Speaker

Ali Fahad Al-Rashed, senior sheikhs, His Highness Sheikh Nasser Al-Mohammed Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, His Highness the Prime Minister Sheik h Jaber AlM u b a r a k A l - H a m a d A l - S a b a h , Fi r s t Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Ahmad Al-Humoud AlJaber Al-Sabah, Deputy Minister of Amiri Diwan Affairs Sheikh Ali Jarrah

Al-Sabah and senior state officials. The official delegation accompanying HH includes, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khalid A l- Ham ad A l- Sab ah, Dep ut y Pr ime Minister and Minister of Finance Mustafa Jassem Al-Shamali, M inister of Commerce and Industry Anas Khalid AlSaleh, Head of His Highness the Amir’s

office Ahmad Fahad Al-Fahad, Advisor at the Amiri Diwan Mohammad Abdullah Abulhassan, head of the Amiri Protocols Sheikh Khalid Al-Abdullah Al-Sabah AlNasser Al-Sabah, Undersecretary of the Foreign Ministry Khaled Suleiman AlJarallah and senior officials from the Amiri Diwan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Finance. — KUNA

Amir’s visit to Turkey essential in developing bilateral ties: Gul Cooperation in all domains KUWAIT: Turkish President Abdullah Gul has stressed the importance of His Highness the Amir of Kuwait’s official visit to Turkey in enhancing bilateral ties and promoting cooperation in all domains. “The timing of the visit is crucial in strengthening ties, not only with the State of Kuwait but also with the Gulf Cooperation Council states,” President Gul told local Al-Rai daily published yesterday.This will be the fifth visit made by the Amir to Turkey in the past five years. The Turkish president also made similar visits to the Gulf state. “These visits are an indication of the solid ties between Kuwait and Turkey in the political, economic, and security domains.” President Gul noted that the trade vol-

ume between the two countries has reached $600 million in recent years. Kuwaiti investments are numerous. They can be seen through the establishment of Kuwaiti banks such as Kuwait Finance House and Burgan Bank. Kuwaiti investors also own some major commercial centers in Turkey, he added. On tourism, meanwhile, President Gul emphasized that the number of Kuwaiti tourists to Turkey has jumped to 70,000 recently. Turkey has changed some of its constitutional regulations to allow nonTurkish citizen to own and purchase properties. “We want Turkey to feel like a second home for Kuwaitis,” President Gul continued. He directed part of his interview with

the local paper to Syria where he reiterated that the “crisis needs to end.” Bashar AlAssad regime should step aside to open a path for democracy, he said. On the US claims that the Syrian regime had used chemical arms against its people, the Turkish President commented that his country is against the use of chemical or mass destruction weapons in the region. “It should be known to everyone that we will not be tolerant to such actions.” He noted that there are some 300,000 Syrian refugees in Turkey. He also thanked Kuwait’s support of the $360 million that went to setting up a refugee camp for the Syrians in Turkey. “It shows Kuwait’s empathy towards the Syrian crisis.”

President Gul also shed light, during his sit-down with the daily, on the Turkey-Israel reconciliation talks and its ripple-effect on common issues in the Middle East, especially that of the Palestinians. He noted that “resuming ties with Israel is conditioned...Turkey only wants permanent peace in the region where the Palestinians are granted an independent statehood.” His wish for peace in the region also extended the instability caused by the Kurdistan Workers’ Party rebels in his country. The Kurds fighters are hindering the improvement of ties with Iraq, he noted. “We only want to minimize this problem... we only want stability in Iraq.” — KUNA

Arab ministers approve NA panel discusses issue of conscription Kuwaiti proposal BEIRUT: The conferees at the 36th session of the Arab Youth and Spor ts Ministers Council, held here yesterday, endorsed a Kuwaiti proposal to reach out to Arab youth through inviting their representatives to attend all Arab ministerial meetings to listen to their ambitions, concerns and initiatives as well as to involve them in the decision-making process. “The Arab Ministerial Council has approved Kuwaiti proposal for direct interaction with this category in the society that need great attention and support,” participating Kuwait’s Public Authority for Youth and Sport Chairman Major General Faisal Al-Jazzaf said. He also unveiled that Kuwait has backed a proposal to increase financial support for youth in the Syrian refugee camps in Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey and Iraq to be channeled through the Arab Fund for Youth and Sports Activities. “Kuwait is keen on aiding displaced Syrians to alleviate their sufferings,” AlJazzaf said. The Council has also agreed on raising the Arab Fund for Youth and Sports Activities’ financial aid to Arab sports tournaments, outlining new ambitious strategies for the Executive Office and technical committees of the Arab Youth and Sports Ministers Council to live up to the aspirations of the Arab youth. The Kuwaiti delegation, led by AlJazzaf, invited the Arab countries to take part in the Arab Youth Festival which will be held in Kuwait next October. For his part, Kuwait’s Deputy General Director of Spor ts Affairs Humoud Felatah said that Kuwait is paying great attention to youth and Kuwaiti leadership is exerting strenuous efforts to empower youth and adopt ambitious plans to increase their role in the society. The conferees have expressed great appreciation of Kuwait’s pioneering efforts in developing youth programs

and activities at home and in the Arab region, Felatah said. The 36th session of the Arab Youth and Sports Ministers Council kicked off here yesterday with the participation of 19 Arab countries. Kuwait is presented in the meeting with the Public Authority for Youth and Sport Chairman Maj Gen Faisal Al-Jazzaf. In her speech, the Arab League Assistant Secretary General for Social Affairs Ambassador Faeqa Al-Saleh urged the Arab ministers to invite youth committees to a special meeting for putting forward a package of youthrelated projects for deliberation and study. Al-Saleh pointed out the endorsed projects should be referred to the next Ministerial Council’s session in Tunisia for final approval as well as to the Arab Economic and Social Council to put them on the agenda of the upcoming Arab development summit. Meanwhile Chairman of the Executive Office of the Council, Egyptian Minister of State for Sports Affairs ElAmry Farouk tackled the main challenges facing Arab youth such the growing unemployment, addiction and crime. He stressed that the need to support Arab sports to expand its positive impact on youth and role in the society. For his part, President of Saudi Youth Welfare Authority and Chairman of the Arab National Olympic Committees Federation Prince Nawaf bin Faisal bin Abdulaziz, called for developing youth programs and activities that suit youth requirements and visions. He asser ted that the Arab youth should take part in choosing and outlining youth programs in their countries. The Lebanese Minister of Youth and Sports Faisal Karami called for empowering Arab youth, particularly females and those with special needs. “We have to recognize youth as full partners in the process of society and state building and development.” —KUNA

KUWAIT: Parliamentary committee on interior and defense affairs discussed yesterday a draft law on conscription in the presence of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense Sheikh Ahmad AlKhaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah. Committee Rapporteur MP Abdullah alTamimi said in a statement after the meeting that the Minister of Defense asked the Committee to speed up discussion of the draft law on conscription, adding that the committee asked for some time in order to resolve the shortcomings of the previous law, which was discontinued since the year 2001. Al-Tamimi pointed out that the defense minister and his accompanying delegation presented their perception about modifying the new law that was forwarded to the committee since 2009, indicating that it was agreed to hold several meetings to discuss the law and its amendments. Meanwhile, the parliamentary financial and economic affairs committee discussed in its meeting yesterday the amendments made by the MPs and the government on the bill of commercial licenses. Committee Chairman MP Dr. Yousef Al-

Zalzalah said in a press statement after the meeting that a series of amendments concerning the sanctions imposed on the many people who commit minor offenses but their sentences were too big, adding that the committee “agreed with the government to lift these sanctions.” The MP explained in the same context that the committee agreed with the government to put these strict penalties for crimes pertinent to rotten meat and the use of the license for the detriment of the country and the public interest. In another development, the central apparatus for dealing with illegal residents is determined to solve all problems facing the families of illegal residents in Kuwait, a top official said here on Sunday. The head of the central apparatus for dealing with illegal residents Saleh AlFadhalah made remarks during a meeting here today with Eritrean non-resident Ambassador to Kuwait Mohammad Omar Mahmoud. The two sides discussed the efforts by the central apparatus and Eritrean authorities to find solutions for issues regarding illegal residents, he said. —- KUNA

Moroccan minister visits Kuwait KUWAIT:The Kuwaiti Minister of Information, Minister of State for Youth Affairs Sheikh Salman Sabah Al-Salem AlHumoud Al-Sabah received yesterday Moroccan Minister of Communications Mustafa Al-Khalfi, who arrived on a visit upon official invitation to attend the 10th Arab Media Forum held in Kuwait. Sheik Salman Al-Humoud said Al-Khalfi is most welcome in Kuwait, praising his participation in the forum to discuss various media issues that contribute to improving Arab media capabilities. Kuwaiti-Moroccan bilateral ties are distinguished and deep-rooted thanks to the wisdom of the political leadership in both states, headed by His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah and King Mohammed VI of Morocco, the

minister added. The Moroccan minister for his part noted that, ìThis visit is a great opportunity to discuss cooperation between the two nations in various fields ... most importantly the information and media domain, as well as issues of new media formats and platforms.î This visit comes to bolster and boost cooperation in the fields of media and culture between the two countries, which is already a model for the region, Al-Khalfi stated. The Arab Media Forum is a great chance for Arab media figures to communicate and cooperate, especially during this critical period, in order to enhance their capabilities to face various challenges and enhance the values of responsibility and freedom in the field, the Moroccan minister said. — KUNA

ANKARA: A Turkish lawmaker stated yesterday that His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber AlSabah’s visit to his country is to crown a news stage of close bilateral cooperation in all areas. MP Emrullah Isler of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) said that mutual visits are very important for furthering bilateral relations. His Highness the Amir’s visit to Turkey comes to lend support to efforts in this area amid rapid transformations across the region, he said. Isler stressed the Amir’s visit is particularly important in view of the agreements to be singed, aimed to bolster cooperation in all domains. He indicated this visit is to yield as important agreements as the Amir’s first visit, back in 2008. Furthermore, the parliamentarian affirmed that the planned agreements fall into many domains, including the high-tech defensive industries sector in Turkey. This area is to be of particular focus. Agreements were initially planned to be discussed during a visit to Kuwait by the Turkish Chief of General Staff last week. However, personal engagements prevented the official from going on with the visit as planned. The Turkish MP also pointed out that the focus of his country’s foreign policy in the last ten years shifted to strengthening relations with countries within its region, particularly the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states. He went further to mention that Kuwait has an important status in Turkey’s foreign policy. He also noted the considerable developments in relations since the AKP party took power in 2002. Isler noted that Turkish-Kuwaiti ties started with the opening of Turkish Embassy in Kuwait in 1971, but only saw dramatic development through the signing of agreements during mutual visits, particularly on economic, political, and cultural levels. Moreover, the Turkish lawmaker listed some of Turkey’s achievements on political and economic levels, which he said were recognized and met with interest on the part of Kuwait. This, he added, reflected positively on TurkishKuwaiti ties, on both official and non-official levels. On economic relations, Isler said Kuwait had determined its initial investment goals since 2005, placing Turkey among the countries of particular interest. This was reflected in a direct flow of Kuwaiti capital into the Turkish market. The lawmaker said Kuwaiti companies have remarkable investments in real estate, retailing, and industrial and banking sectors in Turkey, as well as interests in the privatization processes, launched lately by the Turkish government. On Turkish-Kuwaiti annual trade volume, Isler said that despite increasing growth in trade volume, which amounted to $700 million in 2012, it still falls short of the aspired level that matches the level of ties between the two nations. In the same context, he indicated that his country’s crude oil imports from Kuwait came to $133.3 million in 2011. The imports also included organic chemical material, plastic products, and oils and lubricants. Turkey meanwhile exported food products, fabrics, electric appliances, carpets, and vehicles to Kuwait. On the new Turkish foreign policy, Isler said it concentrates on strengthening ties with countries not only on official level, but also on popular level through cultural, media, academic, and athletic events. He noted tourism exchange a “main starting point” to stronger integration. Exchanged visits are vital for improving bilateral relations, Isler continued, recalling the visit of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to Kuwait back in 2011, along with a delegation that consisted of Turkish businessmen. The visit, he recalled, was received with great interest on both official and non-official levels in both countries. — KUNA


in brief

Grant for bedoons KUWAIT: A Member of Parliamentary Human Rights Committee, Abdelrahman Al-Jeeran, said granting KD 150 every three months to needy bedoons was not enough. He called for “boosting the role of Zakat House and urging companies to share the burden of the House’s budget. He said granting bedoons a reward worth KD 330, as proposed by human rights committee, was still under discussions, and that the Zakat House asked for a budget in order to grant the said reward. Man denies parenthood In a strange turn of events, a newborn was registered and named after a man his mother divorced, even though a DNA test conducted during pregnancy proved that he was not the father, security sources said. Case papers indicated that a citizen had caught a Syrian from inside his house and realized he had been having an affair with his wife, a compatriot of his. The husband informed the police and the two lovers were arrested. Since the woman was pregnant at the time, the husband demanded that a DNA test be conducted. The test showed that the fetus was not his. The citizen added that five years after the divorce, he received a letter from the interior ministry requesting to add the child to his file. Contract terminated The Ministry of Education terminated its contract with a food company after receiving information from the Ministry of Health that crucially revealed that the place where meals were being prepared lacked adequate facilities. Also, the place was very small compared to the number of meals, estimated at 4500 meals a day. The Ministry also found that the company was located in the industrial area of Sabhan, where central kitchens were banned.Based on a report from the Ministr y of Health Undersecretary, Dr Khalid Al-Sahlawi, to Ministry of Education Undersecretary Mariam Al-Wutaid, company’s meal samples were recorded and sent to the Ministry of Health labs. The results revealed that the meals were not fit for human consumption as there were harmful bacteria in them. Role of mayor The National Assembly Secretary, MP Kamel AlAwadhi, said the proposal to amend the mayor’s law was submitted to activate the role of the mayor in recognition of the importance of the office. He said the proposal will allow women to enter the field if they succeeded in politics. Al-Awadhi said the proposal he presented was now with the legislative committee for study. He said the mayor would be elected for a four year term, and there would be no limit on the number of terms.He said the mayor must be from the area from which he or she contests since that way any aspirant for the office would be aware of the people and their concerns.

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Expert cites new trends in treatments of GI diseases Dr Reddy urges govts, scientists to join hands By Sajeev K Peter

KUWAIT: Touristic Enterprise Company recently organized a training program on the art of dealing with the public and VIPs, which was held from April 21to 25 on the premises of the company in Shuwaikh. As many as 17 trainee employees, from various companies, participated in the program. Considered an important program to help meet the requirements of modern management, one of its main objectives is to teach trainees how to deal with VIPs. The program also provides trainees with the skills to identify personality types and accordingly assess a person’s suitability for a group or client.

Kuwaiti journalism in the lead in reaching out to children SHARJAH: Kuwaiti journalism has excelled in capturing the many aspects of children’s interests through various publications and maintains its lead in the field, a prominent children’s literature specialist noted here yesterday. Dr Tariq Al-Bakeri was speaking on the sidelines of Sharjah’s 5th Children’s Reading Festival, saying that journalism which specifically targets children’s interests has a positive impact on their upbringing and personalities. This is particularly true now with so many challenges that stir children away from reading, which is essential for their intellectual growth, he said. The children’s literature professor and journalist said that Kuwaiti journalism has pioneered in paying attention to children in their daily and periodic publications. Al-

Anba newspaper, for example, had once taken a step to providing children a wealth of knowledge by dedicating two of its pages to them, in addition to its weekly extra of 12 pages that features family-related articles and stories. Al-Bakeri further said that children need to be given more space in the media world. This is feasible through introduction of a child-specialized daily newspaper, in printed or electronic form, which reaches children of all ages across the Arab world. The 5th edition of Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival is held from April 23 to May 4, with an overwhelming participation of more than 80 local, regional and international publishing houses, as well as many cultural institutions and bodies, and an elite group of authors, illustrators, men of letters and intellectuals. — KUNA

Asian thief in custody By Hanan Al Saadoun KUWAIT: Hawally detectives arrested a Sri Lankan expat suspected of involvement in 11 cases of thefts. Security sources said the detectives focused on thieves from among the bedoons as well as the Kuwaitis, but investigations revealed that it was a Sri

Lankan who was behind those thefts. After his arrest and subsequent interrogation, he confessed to stealing eight vehicles and robbing three houses, most of the incidents occurring in Bayan area. Some of the stolen materials were found from his possession. He was sent to the public prosecutor.

KUWAIT: Some of the dreaded gastrointestinal (GI) diseases can be totally wiped off the face of the earth if governments and scientists join hands, said an eminent physician here yesterday. Giving a snapshot of the innovative trends that emerge in treatments of GIrelated diseases, Prof Dr D Nageshwar Reddy, a renowned gastroenterologist and the chairman of Asian Institute of Gastroenterology, Hyderabad, said many gastrointestinal diseases can be cured today with the help of innovative technologies and new drugs. “For instance, Hepatitis B can be totally eliminated with the help of vaccine,” he said quoting the examples of Taiwan and China, the countries that nearly eradicated Hepatitis B over a period of 10 years. “Hepatitis B is a classic example. In five years’ time, it can be totally eradicated,” he said. Similarly, many new drugs are available today for Hepatitis C and the treatment is easy. Dr Reddy spoke to journalists prior to the ‘KMA-IDF Oration’ at the Crowne Plaza Hotel yesterday evening. The Asian Institute of Gastroenterology, Hyderabad, is probably the largest GI center in Asia where nearly 100,000 endoscopies and 5,000 ERCPs are done every year. “Asian Institute of Gastroenterology, Hyderabad was established 14 years ago in view of the importance of gastroenterology in healthcare,” Dr Reddy said. “If you look around the world, we see that people concentrate more on cardiac and diabetic problems or neurological diseases as they are very obvious. We tend to neglect gastroenterological problems for some reasons,” he said. According to a survey, 30 percent of the population in India have some form of gastroenterological problems. The number is extremely high in a country with a population of 1.3 billion. Incidentally, the incidence of GI diseases is quite high in many Middle Eastern countries. “Certain gastroenterological diseases are quite common in India and the countries in the Middle East where the number is alarmingly high. For instance, helicobacter pylori (H pylori) that causes gastritis, acidity and ulcer, is extremely common in this region,” he said. According to Dr Rao, H pylori bacteria is found in 20 percent of the urban population and 80 percent of the rural population in

India. This is largely related to hygiene, he pointed out. However, the exact mode of transmission is not known yet, but some genetic vulnerability to the organism is established. “As a race we are more vulnerable to this bacteria than the Western-Caucasian population,” he said. Similarly, Hepatitis B and C infections cause liver diseases. Eight percent of the normal population in India carry Hepatitis B and two percent carry Hepatitis C, he said. “So the incidence of GI-related diseases is extremely high in the Middle East especially countries like Egypt, Syria and Bahrain. So the outcome of this is that there

doctor interaction between Kuwait and India. Kuwaiti doctors can come and study the Indian situation and learn from our treatment experience. This will ver y well help the Kuwaiti doctors in treating cases like H pylori or Hepatitis B or Hepatitis C. Similarly, training in advanced technologies related to areas such as endoscopy, transplantation and research in the field of stem cells can be initiated as part of mutual exchange programs,” he said. Similarly, Indian doctors can also learn from the Kuwaiti experience especially in healthcare administration and delivery system which is quite advanced here.

“GI Endoscopy, Past, Present and Future’ for the medical fraternity in Kuwait yesterday. Today, he will have an exclusive session for gastroenterologists on “Upper GI Bleeding - Current Perspectives’ at 7:30 am at Thunyan Al-Ghanim Gastroenterology Center, Kuwait. At 1:30 pm, he will address the staff members at the Faculty of Medicine at Mubarak Center on ‘Chronic Pancreatitis.’ Indian Doctors Forum President Dr Amir Ahmad, who was also present at the meeting, said KMAIDF Oration is a unique event. “We normally recognize and felicitate an Indian doctor who has worked in India and his work has been acclaimed worldwide. One of the

KUWAIT: Dr D Nageshwar Reddy addresses a press conference at Crowne Plaza Hotel yesterday. He is flanked by Dr Amir Ahmad (left) and Dr Vinod Grover. — Photo by Sajeev K Peter will be severe diseases with serious socio-economic conse quences. The patients could develop chronic liver diseases or cancers of stomach, esophagus and colon. Dr Reddy said, over the last 14 years, the institute has become a huge referral base not only for the country, but for all over the world including countries from the Middle East. Four hundred international doctors were trained over the years including doctors from Saudi Arabia and Egypt. A team of doctors from Kuwait will also be trained at the institute soon. Dr Reddy said the American Institute of GI Endoscopy has recognized the institute as the official center for training. The institute is focused on ser vice, academic training and research. Research in gastroenterology has become cardinally important today in view of the rise in the incidence of GIrelated diseases, he added. Exchange programs “We require more doctor-to-

Dr Reddy also gave a brief overview of the innovative trends in treatments of GI-related diseases. “We are specialized in endoscopic ultrasound which is one of the biggest breakthroughs in the world. The new technology we have developed helped us to do surgery without cutting open a patient ’s abdomen and doing stitches,” he said. The procedure called NOTES (Natural Orifice Trans-luminal Endoscopic Surgery), will enable the endoscope to pass through the stomach, puncture the stomach, go inside the abdomen and perform the required surgery. “With NOTES, we can remove a gall bladder, tumor or appendix through the mouth. The first-ever NOTES on human was performed in 2011 in Hyderabad,” he said. Now, we have developed many other innovative techniques as well for surgical processes. Even major surgeries can be done with the help of endoscopy by implanting balloons inside the stomach. Dr Reddy delivered oration on

aims of IDF has been to improve and strengthen the bilateral relations between India and Kuwait, especially in the field of healthcare,” Dr Ahmad said. “This event will go a long way in achieving this objective. Patronage of the Minister of Health, participation of Kuwait Institute of Medical Specialization (KIMS) demonstrate the significance of the event. IDF Vice President Vinod Grover and Dr D S Rao were also present during the meeting. Dr Reddy had an exceptionally brilliant academic record and he has written in more than 200 publications and reputed journals. He is a peer reviewer for many journals and a member of many editorial boards. He has contributed to international text books on gastroenterology. He has been bestowed with many national and international awards including the prestigious Padmashri from India government. He has delivered numerous oration talks worldwide.

Kuwait sovereign fund to invest in infrastructure KUWAIT: The Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA), the sovereign wealth fund, has long been known both for its integrity and cautious approach to investment. But several recent initiatives point to the growing difficulty of being conservative in a world of virtually zero interest rates and modest yields - and a world in which inflation is low today but may be much higher tomorrow. The KIA recently joined forces with real estate developer Steve Ross’s Related Companies and with Oxford Properties, to provide equity in the first stage of the $15 billion Hudson Yards project in Manhattan. Sovereign wealth funds typically invest in buildings for their rental yield, or invest in funds such as that run by Blackstone. The KIA has always invested in prestigious projects in premier locations in cities such as London. But with rental yields hovering at about 4 per cent, that is no longer attractive. So the KIA has decided to take on development and construction risk of new buildings in the hope of earning a higher return - as much as 20

per cent - instead. Because the KIA has had a longstanding relationship with Related, in which it is an investor, it decided to back Ross, the group’s founder, in the Hudson Yards project. In addition, the KIA is setting aside its usual preference for investing in funds and will back infrastructure projects directly. In some ways, that is a natural evolution. The KIA has long underwritten infrastructure projects in Kuwait following the example of trailblazers such as the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board and the Government of Singapore Investment Corp. “ This way we can deploy big amounts in stable real assets,” says a senior fund executive. “When inflation does kick in, these assets will hold their value.” Like the Canadian Pension Plan, though, the KIA will focus on existing infrastructure rather than investing in greenfield projects. It will also concentrate on the developed world rather than risky emerging markets. In the

hope of attracting some of that money, UK government officials and the Duke of York attended the ceremony with the emir when the Kuwait Investment Office (KIO), the London arm of the KIA, celebrated its 60th anniversary in the Gulf state’s capital. The KIO is headed by Osama Al Ayoub, one of the rising stars of the KIA. Al Ayoub was formerly at the KIA, then spent several years at Goldman Sachs before returning to the authority. Al Ayoub’s appointment to one of the most coveted positions at the KIA illustrates the authority’s tendency to appoint locals to senior roles on the basis of merit. In common with many other sovereign funds, the KIA is subject to political masters. There was pressure, for example, put on it by a number of parliamentarians pushing the cause of relatives and others who were not necessarily qualified for the top job. Senior executives at the fund have also been summoned to parliament for questions on such matters as their buying hotels in which alcohol is served.

Call for Arab media cooperation KUWAIT: Board Chairman and Director General of Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) Sheikh Mubarak AlDuaij Al-Ibrahim Al-Sabah received at his office here yesterday the President of the Lebanese Journalists’ Syndicate Mohammad Baalbaki, and Advisor at the Syndicate Ibrahim El Khoury who are visiting the country upon an official invitation from the Minister of Information. During the meeting, the KUNA Chairman stressed the importance of cooperation between various Arab media institutions in order to enrich Arab discourse to cope with the latest international developments and the

revolution in the field of information technology and applications. The chairman highlighted the need to reach a level of Arab media cooperation which is able to compete in today’s media, utilizing up-to-date scientific and technical resources. He also stressed the importance of continuous communication and consultations among Arab media institutions, as well as the exchange of expertise in the field. Meanwhile, Baalbaki noted that, “Arab media institutions have a responsibility to coordinate at international arenas, and to reach a balanced and credible address, and to present facts objectively.

The KUNA Chairman later received the Kuwaiti Ambassador to Armenia Bassam Al-Qabandi, who expressed his appreciation of KUNA support of efforts aimed at bolstering bilateral relations with other nations. Al-Qabandi also hailed Kuwaiti media, saying it “enjoys a high level of freedom that allows for sophisticated and objective approach to all issues.” Sheikh Mubarak Al-Duaij stressed KUNA is always keen on providing all possible support to various Kuwaiti bodies and institutions to best serve the interests of the homeland, highlighting the agency’s ongoing cooperation with all embassies abroad. —KUNA

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


— Photos by Joseph Shagra

Cleanliness campaign in Shuwaikh By Hanan Al-Saadoun KUWAIT: As part of Kuwait Municipality’s drive to check various violations, public cleanliness and road occupation department carried out a wide ranging campaign in Shuwaikh industrial area in cooperation with the public relations department and a back up of police personnel. The campaign started at 9 am and lasted until noon. A total of 27 trucks, four bulldozers, four forklifts, three lifting lorries, six ordinary lorries and ten dumping trucks of various capacities apart from cars left abandoned were checked. A warning was issued to garages found indulging in violations in the area. The campaign resulted in 60 abandoned cars being lifted, 100 citations being handed out on account of various violations.

Six in police custody for possession of drugs Dhaher jewellery theft foiled KUWAIT: Two wanted Iraqis were arrested with hashish and heroin, and were sent to the concerned authorities. A security source said security personnel were patrolling the Sharhabil Street when they noticed a car with two people in it. When their IDs were checked, they were found wanted in several cases. Both were arrested and drugs were found from their person. Meanwhile, Hawally patrol personnel arrested four citizens in Salmiya for possessing five envelopes containing heroin, and sent them to the concerned authorities. They were sent to the Drugs Control General Department.

Four Asian held Naeem police arrested four Asians for attacking two of their roommates and causing them severe injuries. Both victims were thrown out into the street, including one who suffered a concussion. A passerby told the police that two persons in Naeem area were found in pain near a laundr y. As paramedics and police rushed to the area and rescued the two, they told the police that they were Sri Lankans, and had a dispute with four others over the rent. The others ganged up against them and beat them badly. The four were arrested and were being questioned.

Murder attempt Scared by a bullet penetrating the glass of her car while she was on her way home in Fintas, a woman became almost hysterical and could not drive any further. She called the police who registered a case of attempted murder.

Angry volunteer A volunteer, who offered to help a woman whose car malfunctioned, later tried to act fresh with her and gave her his phone number. However, when the woman declined any interest, he left her alone. A security source said the citizen went with her husband to the Salmiya police station and told them that the man offered her help in lieu of the phone number being accepted, but when she did not evince any interest, the man became angry and sped away. The woman gave the police his car tag number. Detectives are looking for him.

Travel ban An Egyptian accountant stole KD 4,000 from his company, and was placed on the travel ban list. A company representative told the police that the accountant was not reporting for work or answering calls after he retained KD 4,000 that belonged to the company. Detectives are now on the look out for the man.

Jewellery theft Criminal detectives thwarted an

attempt by three Kuwaitis to escape with jewellery worth KD 6000 after stealing it from a citizen’s house in Dhaher area. Acting swiftly, detectives intensified their efforts to identify the culprits and were able to zero in on the three who were arrested. The trio will be sent to the criminal detectives. Pharmacist attacked A citizen insulted an Egyptian pharmacist when she refused to sell him a medicine without a prescription. The pharmacist told the police that a man came to the pharmacy and asked for a restricted medicine though he did not have a prescription. When she refused to give him the drug, he insulted her verbally and left. The pharmacist was able to note down the tag number of the vehicle and gave it to the police. The man was brought to book and questioned. Woman assaulted A Gulf woman who rejected the advances of a man received a hard punch on her shoulder. The suspect then fled in his car, but the woman was able to record the tag number of the vehicle. The woman said as she was heading to her car, a young man followed her but she ignored him. At this, he became very angry, grabbed her arm and punched her on the shoulder, before going to his car and escaping. Detectives are investigating.

Romania envoy hails ties with Kuwait KUWAIT: Romanian Ambassador in Kuwait Vasile Sofineti said on Saturday Romania and Kuwait have been tied with historical relations for over 50 years, voicing mutual willingness to promote and develop ties in years to come. Speaking on the sidelines of a Kuwaiti-Romanian musical evening, hosted by Al-Babtain Central Library, Sofineti said Romania was at the forefront of the countries which recognized the State of Kuwait following independence. He said friendly bonds between Romania and Kuwait had even existed before having forged diplomatic ties. The Romanian ambassador boasted that a number of

Romanian nationals were working in Kuwait in several domains, including health and oil, while 200 Kuwaitis are studying in Romania. However, he hoped that both countries would boost the sharing of experience in various cooperative realms. He added that both sides provide openings for investment and economic cooperation, and that Romanian investors are willing to direct investments and business to Kuwait. On the Kuwaiti-Romanian musical evening, Sofineti spoke highly of the event as a good opportunity for musicians from Romania and Kuwait to perform together in a wonderful musical atmosphere. — KUNA

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

LOCAL in my view

The column

A funny nation

The war on terror By Akbar Ahmed


ommentators are discussing a “next phase” or reignition of the war on terror in the wake of the Boston bombings. They are also raising questions about what the Chechen identity of the two alleged bombers means. Many are attempting to understand their ethnic identity as a signal that this was part of some larger plot from terror groups in the Caucasus and link them back to their ancestral lands. Few are understanding what their Chechen identity means to these individuals in the context of tribal culture and history. In fact, in light of their tribal identity, this is not a new phase of the war on terror at all. The tribal roots of terrorism are a reality which has been overlooked by many since the declaration of the war on terror over a decade ago. It is this reality which I have investigated in my new book, “The Thistle and the Drone: How America’s War on Terror Became a Global War on Tribal Islam.” Using 40 case studies of tribal societies across the Muslim world, from Morocco to Chechnya, I show how the United States misunderstood its enemy after 9/11, mistakenly believing that it was engaging in a “clash of civilizations” between the West and the Muslim world. What I discovered was that the driving force of terrorism is the conflict between tribes on the periphery and their central governments, conflicts which predate 9/11 and which the United States entered in its hunt for terrorists. For tribal communities this is a period of complete disruption. They are attacked by the armies and artillery of their own central government looking for terrorists one day, by suicide bombers and tribal rivals the next, and in certain tribal societies by the deadly drone the day after. “Every day,” they say, “is like 9/11 for us.” Tribalism can even be detected in the catalyst for the war on terror, the events of 9/11. Eighteen of the 19 hijackers were Yemeni tribesmen, as were 95 percent of Al-Qaeda members, according to quotes by bodyguards of Osama bin Laden. Bin Laden himself had a Yemeni tribal background, with his grandfather having come to Saudi Arabia from the Hadhramaut region of eastern Yemen. Bin Laden’s rhetoric and poetry is replete with references to tribalism, talking of tribal honor, courage, revenge and raiding. He even referred to the events of 9/11 as a type of tribal raid. The last two houses he resided in were Ghamdi House in Afghanistan, named after the Yemeni tribe, and Waziristan House in Abbottabad, after the tribal region of Waziristan in the tribal areas of Pakistan. Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda represented the periphery, and their primary target was the Saudi central government. It is thus these issues-tribalism and the struggle between center and periphery-that are the causes of the violence in Chechnya in the Caucasus region of Russia. The Chechen tribes, who live by a code of honor and revenge called Nokhchalla, have fiercely resisted encroachment and colonization by Russia for centuries. In the 1940s, the Soviet Union under Stalin deported nearly the entire Chechen population to Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, with as many as half dying in the process. Many of the survivors of the deportations returned to the Caucasus in the 1960s. After the fall of the Soviet Union, Chechnya experienced two brutal wars with the Russian military in the 1990s, as the newly formed Russian Federation attempted to keep the region from declaring independence. About 10 percent of the Chechen population was slaughtered in these wars, causing a distinct mutation in their tribal code. This mutation led to the attack by Chechens on the Beslan School, the Moscow Metro and a Moscow theater, and countless other attacks, including suicide bombings in which many innocent men, women and children were killed. These were acts of sheer cruelty and violence designed to cause pain. They made no sense, as they alienated people from the larger Chechen cause. The violent groups, much like the TTP in Pakistan, al-Shabab in Somalia and Boko Haram in Nigeria, will say that they have killed these innocent people to cause pain-an act of pure destruction and revenge. Their families have been raped and murdered in front of their eyes, and they will do the same-a distinct mutation of the tribal code and its compulsions for revenge. It is clear that relations between the center and peripher y have broken down, not only in Chechnya but across the Muslim, and even nonMuslim, world. Chechnya is rife with tragic stories. In one November 2001 incident, a 23-year-old woman who had lost her husband, two brothers and a cousin to the violence in Chechnya blew herself up, killing the Russian general who had previously tortured her husband to death in front of her. Right before detonating the explosives strapped to her body, she asked “Do you still remember me?” The general had personally called for her to enter the room and witness her husband’s torture, during which the general slashed her husband’s stomach and forced her face into the open wound. It was this violence that the Tsarnaev family, to which the Boston suspects belong, was fleeing when they landed in Kyrgyzstan and eventually the United States. Within the United States, they faced a whole new set of challenges, lost between two worlds, without guides or role models. They found themselves as part of a broader Muslim community, constantly suspect due to the actions of a few, and with religious and community leadership disconnected from American culture and the experiences of the younger generation. With the lack of effective leadership, violent ideas and ideology too often fill the minds of the disaffected youth, made more complicated with the tribal element and its compulsions for revenge. Within the United States, we need to understand that the roots of terrorism lie in the broken relationship between central governments and tribal peripheries. In fact, Islam has very little to do with terrorism. Considering the hundreds of thousands of immigrants with a tribal background who live in the US, there is a need to reaffirm the principles of pluralism proclaimed by the Founding Fathers as the bedrock of this country. And the Muslim leadership-the imams and elders of the community-needs to become better aware of the broader American culture that the younger generation of Muslims is engaged with. Incidents like the one in Boston must not be allowed to happen again. Only with communities working together through understanding and dialogue can we work toward a more peaceful future.

By Fouad Al-Obaid Twitter: @Fouadalobaid


kuwait digest

Contradictory statements By Abdullah Al-Najjar


t seems that there is no end to how much the opposition can exaggerate its claims. After all, it claimed that 250,000 people demonstrated at the Determination Yard, 10,000 marched towards the Andalu police station and 100,000 took part in the Sabah Al-Nasser rally. In an interview to the Al-Watan TV, lawyer and former parliamentary election candidate, Mubarak Al-Harees said that 80 per cent of the Kuwaiti people had boycotted the last parliamentary elections. How can we believe such allegations when poll statistics showed that 40 per cent of the people took part in the elections? Such a claim can only be true if both the numbers were added but then that will make the Kuwaitis’ population swell up to 120 per cent of the country’s total population! Dear Harees, we have said a million times that nobody is entitled to speak on behalf of the people. You can only speak about a certain section or the annulled majority. Kuwaitis from all walks of life in the country took part in the elections, including tribes that are not represented in the current parliament. Assume that the number you are talking about is correct and that they took part in the voting process in addition to the 20 per cent who did, then have you ever heard of a 100 per cent participation in any parliamentary election voting? The electorate actually casting its ballot has not exceeded 65 per cent in over 20

years now. Your response to the interviewer’s question about the current parliament achieving more than the annulled one, at least till date, was rather peculiar. Your response was: “This happened because the government cooperates with it.” Doesn’t this response indict the annulled majority? We have always called for more cooperation between the government and the lawmakers, so has HH the Amir, former speakers and former Prime Ministers. We, the people, are only interested in positive results and here you are proving that no achievements were made in the past because of lack of cooperation between the two power centers. You proved that some tensioncreators have been obstructing any attempts to revive various projects, thanks to vested interests, not because of any patriotic reasons or their ostensible wish to fight corruption. In a very contradictory statement published in AlWatan last Tuesday, the lawyers’ association accused the Ministry of Interior of delaying public and litigators’ interests by taking measures to prosecute former MP Musallam Al-Barrak last Monday but, at the same time, also called upon lawyers not to attend the next day’s hearings as a mark of protest. Who is causing delay, for God’s sake? — Al-Watan

kuwait digest

Oil sector employment

must admit that I am rather amused at our current national predicament. What make matters more interesting are the opinions, and assumptions, of various parties to the ongoing political struggle. I ran across a rather peculiar editorial last week in a sister newspaper whereby the author ‘Thanks Allah’ for intervening in disrupting the ‘oppositions’ attempt to carry out their battles in the international public opinion arena! Now apart from the curious assumption that God Almighty is actively intervening in our nation’s politics, what would make that particular author believe that God Almighty would help the descendants of ‘pigs and monkeys’ against us pious Muslims!! The problem these days are that we are engaging, for lack of a better term: in monkey business! We are placing blame for our problems on others, instead of being adults, and addressing them in a rational and constructive manner. Fire begets fire, and in this incendiary atmosphere, the nation as a whole will be the ultimate looser. The way the events are unraveling is pushing me to ponder whether this ‘hot and cold’ game is nothing more than a ploy to ensure that ‘We’ the people are lost in an endless loop of blame and counter-blame, with nothing concrete as outcome. It seem as if the derailing of the nation’s ambitions is the name of the game. Despite our billions, we are unable to meaningfully carry out decisions to build the future that all citizens aspire to. At the end of the day history is nothing but a repetition of events, people are aware that we are being robbed in broad day light, a time may come when constraining the nation will become impossible. A frustrated youth populace that feels that their future is bleak is not a sound nor sustainable route. The two recent earthquakes (one geological, the other financial) should encourage our political leadership to confront the realities that we are faced with; natural calamities that have reached our shores; military threats resonating in the air; and last, certainly not least; ongoing price fluctuation of oil, and it’s direct ramifications on our purchasing power parity. We need to ensure that we have the proper human resource capability to confront the three looming dangers. We must anticipate the worse, for even oil may potentially not outlive the current generation, certainly its preponderance as the worlds driving force will wane; and with its wane, our economic paradigm will see a deep seismic change altering the very way people live and conduct their business. I pray the All might, that he intervenes by blessing us with guidance, and by inspiring us through the action of our beloved prophet on sowing the seeds of hard work in order to reap the dual benefit of an enlightened prosperous society on earth, and good tidings in the thereafter. We are what we decide to be. We should take it upon ourselves guide those in dismay, and it is up to us to spearhead the development of our nation, for if we do not, who will?

By Mubarak Al-Hajiry


wish I was an Indian,” is what a man said with regret. Hope nothing is wrong, responded another. The first man said, “You do not know what is going on in the oil sector, the hen that lays golden eggs, because people of this nationality, notwithstanding the fact that we respect them, have taken over this sector and the most sensitive matters in it. In fact they have taken it over to a point where it has become rare to see Kuwaitis in the sector. Things did not stop here. Rather, these changed to a point that some sections of the oil sector became private, or as the Chinese put it, became off limits areas. It became impossible to employ Kuwaiti youth, regardless of their experience and post-graduate

degrees. The Kuwaiti youth was excluded and core operations are run by those who came to take control without any competition. They were there because of nepotism. Those who reached certain positions allowed their own kind to prosper, and then to bring in their children and relatives from their country. Some sources said all these immigrants were coming on the basis of questionable certificates. All this time we are left wondering where are the MPs of Kuwait while unprecedented financial and administrative violations are taking place in a sector considered the first resource? Is it realistic that Kuwait’s veins and the heart that pumps life through these veins - the oil sector -

be left in the care of those who made it a family farm, and who are harvesting its fruits along with their relatives while Kuwaiti youth are looking for job opportunities? We say with confidence that the sincere people of Kuwait will not remain mute spectators towards what is happening, and towards the violations in most oil companies. In order to restore things to normal, Kuwaitis must be allowed to work there, and the huge numbers of Asians, starting with Indians, need to be reduced. The children of Kuwait deserve their country’s goodies and its natural wealth. This wealth should be under the control of its own nationals, not foreigners who do not know anything about the oil industry. — Al-Rai

kuwait digest

The Egyptian Jon Stewart By Mariam Hussein Makki Al-Juma


n the Jan 25 revolution ushered in Egypt, the Egyptian people broke all norms and taboos; they crossed many redlines, according to the French Le Point, the Guardian, Bloomberg Business Week and the Time. These publications wrote about how the real hero was the voice of millions of Egyptians, expressed through the traditional media and channels. One of the loudest voices was that of the Egyptian media icon, Dr. Bassem Youssif, known for his sarcasm and dripping wit seen in shows easily accessible on YouTube. Youssif started with a comic satire named after him, the ‘Bassem Youssif Show,’ that soon notched a viewership of more than 15 million. This convinced the Egyptian private ONTV channel to produce his program Al-Bernameg (The Program) that really helped develop and demonstrate Youssif ’s charisma which was to soon cross all boundaries and make him famous beyond the Arab world.Youssif’s show mainly

adapts a bald political satire mould and is now exclusively shown on the CBC channel. Many of the episodes on his show have angered many media figures who were panned by Youssif in his typical style, laced with satire. In other episodes, Youssif’s sarcasm and criticism of many clergymen’s fatwas angered Egyptian Islamists, which led scores of cases being filed against him at the D.A.’s office. Following in the steps of the famous American political satirist and comedian, Jon Stewart of the Daily Show fame, Youssif has succeeded in having his Arab name listed amongst the world’s 100 most effective figures including philosophers, thinkers, leaders, artists, scientists and icons in the TIME magazine’s tenth annual list. Jon Stewart even wrote a brief about Youssif in that issue, saying that they both do the same thing with only one exception Youssif practices satire in a country that is still testing the limits of freedom and has already paid a heavy price for it. — Al-Watan

Youssif’s show mainly adapts a bald political satire mould and is now exclusively shown on the CBC channel. Many of the episodes on his show have angered many media figures who were panned by Youssif in his typical style, laced with satire.

kuwait digest

Defend our freedoms By Thaar Al Rashidi


he strange thing about the current parliament is that there are more calls for silence than those asking people to speak up. Some MPs have been asking their colleagues to remain silent, and not utter a word. If an MP threatens to grill a minister, the latter demands so self-assuredly that the MP must remain silent. Strangely, some of the members of the council welcomed the unified press law, which is a law that tells journalists, citizens, expats and even transit visitors to remain “silent.” Even His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al Mubarak said he would withdraw the unified press law, and told as much to our colleagues, the editors-in-chief of local newspapers. However, there are still some MPs who think that this law is a way out of the media confusion which we are going through. It is a council in which members call for silence, and some even exaggerate and promote the idea that the “the sheikhs know better” or that the “government knows better.” This is happening at a time when even an eight-year-old can count for you his political rights and knows very well that he has the right to express his opinion even if the sheikhs or the government do not like it. The so-called ‘media confusion’ created by Twitter and Facebook is not really as chaotic as the MPs portray it. It is rather a platform where many opinions and views come into public limelight, thanks to the modern social media networks. Governments were more capable of suppressing their people in the past when they owned, ran and controlled both radio and TV channels. Even the newspapers were more controlled though some were private or independent, thanks to suppressive laws or rules of censorship. The story is different nowadays. No government can regulate the flow of public opinions, and people’s feelings can explode and they can revolt at any time. Kuwait’s constitution calls for more freedoms and bans any freedom-oppressing laws. Nevertheless, some MPs applauded the proposed media bill, forgetting that they should have been on the side of freedom instead. Lawmakers should have stood for and defended our freedoms against any government-proposed bills instead of acting like a seven-lane highway along which the government can pass whatever laws it wished to further suppress us. Finally, I wish to thank HH the PM for withdrawing the bill that should not have been suggested in the first place. Those who drafted, wrote, typed or even discussed it should be held accountable because they either knew nothing about the law, our constitution or wanted to strike against the government with their actions. — Al-Anba

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

Owner of collapsed building arrested fleeing to India

German Greens vow to unseat Merkel with SPD Page 9

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ROME: In this photo provided by the Presidential Press service, Premier Enrico Letta, left, shakes hands with Italian President Giorgio Napolitano after taking oath during the swearing in ceremony of the new government at the Quirinale Presidential Palace, in Rome, yesterday. — AP

Italy gets new government Two policemen shot in Rome ROME: An unemployed bricklayer shot two Italian policemen in a crowded square outside the premier’s office yesterday just as Italy’s new government was being sworn in, investigators said. The gunman’s intended target was politicians but none were in the square so he shot at the Carabinieiri paramilitary police, Rome Prosecutor Pierfilippo Laviani told reporters, citing what he said were the suspect’s own words. Mired in recession and suffering from soaring unemployment, Italy has been in political paralysis since an inconclusive February election. Social and political tensions have been running high among voters divided between centerleft, conservative and anti-government political parties. Yesterday was supposed to be a hopeful day when the debt-ridden nation finally got new government to solve its many problems. But shots rang out in Colonna Square near a busy shopping and strolling area shortly after 11:30 a.m. just as Premier Enrico Letta and his new ministers were taking their oaths at the Quirinal presidential office about a kilometer (half mile) away. The suspected gunman, dressed in a dark business suit, was immediately wrestled to the ground by police outside Chigi Palace, which houses the premier’s office and other government offices. The politicians went to the palace later Sunday for their first Cabinet meeting. Laviani identified the alleged assailant as Luigi Preiti, a 49-year-old from Calabria, a southern agricultural area plagued by organized crime and chronic unemployment. The shooting panicked tourists and locals in the square, whose centerpiece is a towering, second-century ancient Roman column honoring Emperor Marcus Aurelius. Rome was packed Sunday with people enjoying the last day of a four-day weekend. Fanuel Morelli, a cameraman working for AP Television, said he was struck by the gunman’s firm, calm stance. “When I heard the first shot, I turned

around and saw a man standing there, some 15 meters (50 feet) away from me. He held his arm out and I saw him fire another five, six shots,” Morelli said. “He was firing at the second Carabiniere, who was about 4 meters (13 feet) in front of him.’” Laviani said Preiti, who was taken to the hospital for bruises, confessed to the shooting and didn’t appear mentally unbalanced. “He is a man full of problems, who lost his job, who lost everything,” the prosecutor said. “He was desperate. In general, he wanted to shoot at politicians, but given that he couldn’t reach any, he shot at the Carabinieri” paramilitary police. One policemen who shot in the neck was in critical condition. The other, shot in the leg, suffered a fracture, doctors said. A woman passing by during the shooting was slightly injured, Rome’s mayor said. It was unclear if she was grazed by a bullet or hurt in the panic sparked by the gunfire. The 46-year-old Letta had produced a coalition deal only a day ago between two bitter political enemies - his centerleft forces and the conservative bloc of ex-Premier Silvio Berlusconi. Letta will speak to Parliament today, laying out his strategy to reduce joblessness while still sticking to the austerity measures needed to keep the eurozone’s No. 3 economy from descending into a sovereign debt crisis. He will then face confidence votes. A video surveillance camera on the Parliament building caught the attacker on film just before and during the shooting, Italian news reports said. The shooter was walking at a steady pace along a narrow street that leads from the square outside Parliament’s lower house to the square outside the premier’s office when police officers appear to have stopped him to ask where he was going. Shortly after police approached him, he began firing, according to the surveillance camera. Interior Minister Angelino Alfano said the alleged gunman wanted to kill himself after the

shooting but ran out of bullets. He said six shots were fired in all. The gunman used a semi-automatic pistol whose serial number had been scraped off, according to Sky TG24 TV. The interior minister said security was immediately stepped up near key venues in the Italian capital, but added authorities were not worried about possible related attacks. “Our initial investigation indicates the incident is due to an isolated gesture, although further investigations are being carried out,” he said. The ministers were kept briefly inside for security reasons until it was clear there was no immediate danger. Doctors at Rome’s Umberto I Polyclinic said a 50-year-old brigadier had been hit in the neck by a bullet that damaged his spinal column and was lodged near his shoulder. The doctors said it wasn’t yet known if the spinal column injury had caused any paralysis. The head of St. John’s Hospital, Gianluigi Bracciale, told Sky TG24 TV the second officer suffered a broken leg from a gunshot. He said Prieti didn’t appear to have any injuries other than bruises. Preiti’s uncle, interviewed by Sky, said the alleged gunman had moved back to his parents’ home in Calabria because he could no longer find work as a bricklayer. “He was a great worker. He could build a house from top to bottom,” said the uncle, Domenco Preiti. The shooting sparked ugly memories of the 1970s and 1980s in Italy, when domestic terrorism plagued the country during a time of high political tensions between right-wing and left-wing blocs. Among well-wishers for the new Italian government was President Barack Obama. The White House press office said Obama was looking forward to working closely with Letta’s government “to promote trade, jobs, and growth on both sides of the Atlantic and tackle today’s complex security challenges.” There was no direct reference to the shooting in the White House statement.—AP

Pakistan Taleban bomb kills 9 PARACHINAR: Pakistani Taleban detonated bombs at the campaign offices of two politicians in the countr y ’s nor thwest yesterday, police said, killing at least nine people in an escalation of attacks on secular, left-leaning political parties. In first attack, on the outskirts of Kohat city, a bomb ripped through the office of Syed Noor Akbar, killing six and wounding 10 people, police official Mujtaba Hussain said. A second bomb targeted a campaign office of another candidate, Nasir Khan Afridi, in the suburbs of Peshawar city. That attack killed three people and wounded 12, police official Saifur Rehman Khan said. Both politicians, who were not in the offices at the time of the blasts, are

running as independent candidates for national assembly seats to represent constituencies in Pakistan’s lawless tribal areas, where scores of militant groups operate including some with links to al-Qaeda. The general elections will be held on May 11. Pak istani Taleban spokesman Ahsanullah Ahsan claimed responsibility for both attacks, as well as two others against secular political parties in the southern port city of Karachi. “We are against all politicians who are going to become part of any secular, democratic government,” he told The Associated Press by telephone from an undisclosed location. The Taleban previously announced a strategy to target three political parties, including the Awami National

Par ty (ANP), the Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM) and the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP). All three are perceived as liberal, having earned the Taliban’s ire by opposing the insurgency and extremism during their time in the outgoing government. The onslaught has forced many of the parties to change their campaign strategy and has raised questions about whether the vote can be considered valid if some mainstream parties can’t properly take part. Such attacks have killed at least 28 people in just last four days. One of the most serious attacks occurred on April 21, when a suicide bomber blew himself up outside a meeting of the ANP in the northwestern city of Peshawar, killing 16 people. —AP

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Mursi climbs down, seeks compromise on judges Court turns down Mubarak’s release request

ALEPPO: Internally displaced Syrian families spend their day at the Maiber Al-Salam refugee camp along the Turkish border in the northern province of Aleppo yesterday. The number of Syrians who have fled their conflict-ravaged homeland has surpassed 1.4 million, the United Nations refugee agency said, warning that it was no longer able to meet their medical needs. — AFP

Syrian rebels, troops clash at three air bases BEIRUT: Syrian rebels seeking to topple President Bashar Assad fought intense battles with his troops yesterday to try to seize control of three military air bases in the country’s north and curtail the regime’s use of its punishing air power, activists said. Rebels, who have been trying to capture the air fields for months, broke into the sprawling Abu Zuhour air base in northwestern Idlib province and Kweiras base in the Aleppo province on Saturday. Fighting raged inside the two facilities yesterday. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at least seven fighters were killed in the fighting in Abu Zuhour, in addition to an unknown number of soldiers. The group, which relies on a network of activists on the ground, said the Syrian air force conducted an airstrike on Abu Zuhour village during the fighting to ease pressure on government troops inside the base. Rebels control much of Idlib and Aleppo provinces, which border Turkey, although government troops still hold some areas including the provincial capital of Idlib province and parts of the city of Aleppo, Syria’s largest urban center. The Aleppo Media Center said rebels also seized 60 percent of the Mannagh helicopter base near the border with Turkey. Rebels from the Islamist al-Burraq Brigades announced that fighters from multiple factions in northern Aleppo have launched a large-scale offensive to seize full control of the facility. Government troops regularly shell nearby areas from the Mannagh base, including a rocket attack overnight on the town of Tal Rifaat near the border with Turkey that killed at least four people, including two women and a child. Syria’s conflict started with largely peaceful anti-government protests in March 2011 but eventually turned into a civil war. More than 70,000 people have been killed, according to the United Nations.The Obama administration said Thursday that intelligence indicates that government forces likely used chemical

agents against rebels in two attacks. Washington’s declaration was its strongest on the topic so far, although the administration said it was still working to pin down definitive proof of the use of chemical weapons. It held back from saying Damascus had crossed what President Barack Obama has said would be a “red line” prompting tougher action in Syria. Both sides of the civil war accuse each other of using the chemical weapons. The deadliest such alleged attack was in the Khan al-Assal village in the Aleppo province in March. The Syrian government called for the United Nations to investigate alleged chemical weapons use by rebels in the attack that killed 31 people. Syria, however, has not allowed a team of experts into the country because it wants the investigation limited to the single Khan al-Assal incident, while UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has urged “immediate and unfettered access” for an expanded investigation. The state-run al-Thawra newspaper on Sunday accused the UN secretary general of being a “tool” for the United States and accused him of “bowing to American and European pressures.” In neighoring Lebanon, Hezbollah’s AlManar TV reported that Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov met Saturday night with the pro-Syrian militant group’s leader, Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah. No details emerged of the late night meeting. The Shiite Muslim group has been drawn into the fighting in Syria and is known to be backing regime fighters in Shiite villages near the Lebanon border. The Syrian opposition accuses fighters from the group of taking part in the Syrian military crackdown inside the country. Yesterday morning at a news conference in Beirut, Bogdanov called for a diplomatic solution to Syria’s civil war based on the Geneva Communique of June 2012. The communique is a broad but ambiguous proposal endorsed by Western powers and Russia to provide a basis for negotiations. —AP

MADRID: Spain’s King Juan Carlos (L) chats with Jordan’s King Abdullah II during a visit a tthe Zarzuela Palace in Madrid yesterday. — AFP

CAIRO: Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi and top judges agreed yesterday to seek a compromise to defuse a battle over Islamist attempts to force out thousands of judges that have deeply polarised the Arab world’s most populous nation. Mursi’s Islamist allies had proposed legislation to purge more than 3,000 judges at a stroke by reducing their mandatory retirement age to 60 from 70 to sweep away senior jurists appointed under autocratic former President Hosni Mubarak. But after nearly three hours of talks, the president’s office and the Supreme Judicial Council said they had agreed to launch a conference on the future of the justice system that would work out a reform acceptable to both sides. The deal appeared to be a significant climbdown by the ruling Muslim Brotherhood in the face of fierce resistance to its push for a fasttrack law to “cleanse the judiciary”. A presidential spokesman said in a statement read on state television that Mursi had praised the idea of a justice conference and would start preparatory sessions at the presidency on Tuesday. Mursi would “personally adopt all the conclusions of this conference from project laws to present it to the legislative council,” he said. Mohamed Mumtaz, president of the Supreme Judicial Council, gave an almost identically worded statement. A judicial source said discussion of the Islamist draft law that sparked an outcry among judges, lawyers, opposition parties and civil rights groups, would be frozen until after the conference and the president would present a new draft. The Brotherhood accuses many judges of being remnants of the previous regime, who abuse their position to obstruct elections and laws proposed by bodies elected since the uprising that overthrew Mubarak in 2011, and of frustrating efforts to bring corrupt former officials to justice. The secular, liberal and left-wing opposition, as well as ultra-conservative Salafi Islamists, charge that the Muslim Brotherhood is trying to monopolise power by purging independent judges to make way for its own place men in key

CAIRO: Students from Cairo University march towards the Egyptian Prime Minister’s office demanding the release of students arrested in previous violent demonstrations and to increase the political independence of the universities, yesterday in Cairo. — AFP courts. The opposition is also demanding the removal of Prosecutor General Talaat Ibrahim, whose appointment by Mursi was ruled illegal by an appeals court. Ibrahim, accused of bias towards the Islamists in his conduct, is appealing against the ruling. Several thousand judges held a protest rally last week to denounce the planned amendment of the Judicial Authority Law in the upper house of parliament as unconstitutional. But the floor leader of the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, Essam El-Arian, said on Friday lawmakers should press ahead with the new law without delay. The battle over the judiciary has triggered street violence with the Brotherhood holding a mass demonstration on April 19 to demand a

“cleansing of the judiciary” that ended in clashes. Meanwhile, Egypt’s state news agency says a court has turned down deposed President Hosni Mubarak’s request to be released from prison during an investigation into corruption charges. The news agency MENA says the Cairo Criminal Court yesterday ordered Mubarak to remain in jail for 15 days while the charges are probed. Mubarak can appeal the court’s decision. The longtime autocrat was ousted during a 2011 public uprising. He has spent more than two years in detention without a final verdict in the case alleging that he is responsible for the deaths of nearly 900 protesters during the uprising. He also has been ordered held in prison on other charges, including corruption. — Agencies

Israel responds to Gaza rocket fire with airstrike JERUSALEM: Israel responded to rockets fired from the Gaza Strip with airstrikes on sites used by Islamic militant group Hamas, which rules the Palestinian territory, the military said yesterday. It said its jets struck “a terrorist weapon storage facility and a Hamas training installation” after rockets landed in southern Israel the night before. It also closed a closed a key border crossing with the territory. Gaza health officials said nobody was hurt in the strikes. On Saturday, thousands of Israelis had been outside in parks and forests celebrating the Jewish holiday of Lag Baomer with traditional bonfires. The rockets exploded in open areas and caused no injuries. Rocket fire from Gaza has declined since a military campaign in November, before which militants were firing rockets on an almost daily basis and launching other attacks on Israeli towns across the border. Sporadic fire still persists however. The military said it “will not tolerate any attempt to harm Israeli civilians” and that it will not allow the situation to return to where it stood before the November campaign. Israel holds Gaza’s militant Hamas rulers responsible for all attacks from the territory. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said after the attack that the perpetrators will “pay a heavy price.” Speaking at a government meeting Sunday, Netanyahu said he will “not allow a policy of sporadic fire” to continue. He said such fire will be met with a “very strong” response. No group claimed responsibility for the attacks. A shadowy extremist Muslim Salafi group has been behind recent attacks in the area, including one last month where rockets were fired from Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. Hamas sees the Salafis as a threat to its rule and routinely arrest members of the ultraconservative movement in Gaza. Salafis view even Hamas’s hardline interpretation of Islamic law as too moderate and the two

groups have clashed violently in the past. Along with the airstrikes, Israel responded to Saturday’s rocket fire by closing the Kerem Shalom crossing with Gaza. It said another terminal will be open for humanitarian cases. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his ministers to keep silent about Syria to avoid the impression Israel is pushing the international community into armed intervention, army radio said yesterday. Netanyahu gave the instructions after Deputy Foreign Minister Zeev Elkin suggested the international community might react militarily to “take control of the Syrian chemical weapons arsenal”. The radio station reported Netanyahu sought to avoid that Elkin’s words be seen as an Israeli attempt to push the United States into launching a military operation in Syria. The political commentator on military radio said that “US hesitancy over the Syrian issue in the last few days, however, is causing a great deal of worry in Israel”. “If (US President) Barack Obama does not respect the red lines that he set out himself and does not intervene when Bashar al-Assad uses chemical weapons against civilians, it is showing weaknesses that could cost it dearly later in Syria, but also in the Iranian nuclear question,” the commentator added. Britain and France have accused Damascus of using chemical arms, and on Thursday US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel said “the US intelligence community assesses with some degree of varying confidence that the Syrian regime has used chemical weapons on a small scale”. An Israeli military intelligence official on Tuesday accused Assad’s forces of using chemical weapons in his war against the rebels. Obama has warned the Syrian regime against using its chemical weapons arsenal on several occasions, saying such a move would be a “game changer” and speaking of “red lines” Damascus must not cross. - Agencies

JERUSALEM: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) speaks with Military Secretary Eyal Zamir during the weekly cabinet meeting in his Jerusalem office yesterday. Netanyahu told his ministers to keep silent about Syria to avoid the impression Israel is pushing the international community into armed intervention, army radio said. — AFP

Senior Egypt officials in Iran for Syria talks CAIRO: Senior aides to Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi made a rare visit to Tehran for talks with Iran on an Islamic initiative to seek a peaceful solution to Syria’s civil war, the two sides said yesterday. Tehran is Syria’s closest ally and has provided money, weapons, intelligence and training for President Bashar al-Assad’s forces, while Egypt has given political support to the opposition Syrian National Coalition fighting to oust him. Mursi’s foreign affairs adviser Essam Haddad and his chief-ofstaff Rifaa El-Tahtawy met Iranian officials in a follow-up to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s groundbreaking visit to Cairo in February for an Islamic summit. An Iranian Foreign Ministry statement said they agreed on “the necessity of an action act on the Egyptian president’s plan on the Syria crisis through an acceptable political solution which can help end the violence and help national reconciliation with the participation of the people of Syria”. Mursi included Iran, alongside Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Turkey, in a diplomatic “Islamic Quartet” of countries established last year to try to broker a solution in Syria. The Egyptian leader proposed negotiations between Syrian government representatives not directly involved in repression and opposition leaders under regional or UN auspices on a transition of power. However, the Saudis stayed away from the group in February in apparent irritation at the inclusion of the Iranians, and Syria has rejected foreign involvement in the national dialogue proposed by Assad. The visiting Egyptian officials met Ahmadinejad and senior figures in Iran’s foreign policy establishment - national security adviser Saeed Jalili, Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi and Ali Akbar Velayati, foreign policy adviser to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. “The relationship between Cairo and Tehran is extremely sensitive, and should be managed wisely. And this is what Egypt is doing,” Haddad said on a television talk show broadcast on Saturday. —Reuters

Jewish women eye further court fight for Western Wall rights JERUSALEM: Women seeking equal prayer rights at the Western Wall are planning a further challenge to Jewish Orthodox tradition at the site after a court ruling bolstered their cause, an activist said yesterday. The Women of the Wall movement hopes to have its members read from a Torah (holy scriptures) scroll at the Jerusalem site, a ritual reserved under Orthodox practice for men only, when it holds its monthly prayer session there on May 10, according to Anat Hoffman, a

leader of the group. The women have already broken with tradition in gatherings at the Western Wall, which is divided into separate men’s and women’s sections, by wearing prayer shawls that Orthodox law says only men should don. Israeli police, saying they were enforcing Supreme Court guidelines on keeping the peace and following local customs at the site, have routinely arrested women worshippers from the group during the prayer meetings.

The protests have exposed a rift between Israel’s government, which supports Orthodox practice at the Western Wall, and the US Jewish Reform and Conservative movements, in whose synagogues men and women sit together. In a ruling that Women of the Wall called revolutionary, the Jerusalem District Court said on Thursday that customs change and women should not be arrested for wearing prayer shawls at the site. Women reading from the Torah at the

Western Wall, revered as part of the Biblical Jewish Temple compound, could cause further friction with Orthodox worshippers. Earlier this month, an envoy appointed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to seek a compromise over religious practices at the holy site proposed adding a mixed-gender section for non-Orthodox denominations of Judaism. Hoffman told Reuters she planned to meet with the envoy, former Israeli cabinet minister Natan Sharansky, today.

“Then we will have a better understanding of what is on the table,” she said. Sharansky has said the plan to convert an old archaeological dig south of the Western Wall into an area where men and women would be allowed to mix and worship freely would not entail structural damage around nearby alAqsa mosque, Islam’s third-holiest site. The sites came under Israel’s control in the 1967 Middle East war when it captured East Jerusalem and the West Bank. — Reuters

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Cameron sees rival Johnson as British PM material LONDON: British Prime Minister David Cameron admitted that one of his biggest party rivals, London Mayor Boris Johnson, could well be a future premier, in an interview published yesterday. Johnson, one of the best-known faces in British politics, is considered a potential future challenger for Cameron’s leadership of the centreright Conservatives. However, Johnson’s second term in charge of Britain’s capital city runs into

2016 — and the next general election must take place by May 2015 at the latest. Asked whether Johnson could combine being London mayor with a return to parliament as a lawmaker, Cameron told The Sunday Times newspaper: “Boris can do anything, that’s the moral of the story of Boris.” Cameron insisted he did not feel threatened by Johnson’s ambition or popularity, which was fulled during the London 2012 Olympics. “Boris is one of the

greatest assets the Conservative Party has.... I love Boris,” Cameron said. Asked whether Johnson could become prime minister, he said: “I’d never want to put a limit on what Boris can achieve.” Cameron and Johnson were in the same exclusive dining and boozing society at the prestigious Oxford University. The Bullingdon Club is known for its boisterous antics.Cameron caused a stir on Thursday by appointing Johnson’s

younger brother as his head of policy, a move observers said was aimed at bringing the prime minister closer to the disgruntled right wing of his party. Jo Johnson, a 41-year-old Conservative lawmaker, will lead the policy unit at Downing Street as part of his new role as a junior minister in the Cabinet Office ministry, which coordinates government activities. Cameron also spoke about Conservative Party icon Margaret

Thatcher, the prime minister from 1979 to 1990, who died at the age of 87. Asked whether he was a Thatcherite, Cameron said: “No, other people would call me that.... I think the labels now sometimes don’t mean what they did then. “I was a tremendous Mrs Thatcher supporter. The battles she won were so important for our country, but there are now different challenges and things that need to be dealt with.” — AFP

Russia caught bomb suspect on wiretap Tamerlan and his mother discuss jihad

BERLIN: A picture of a smoke covered Angela Merkel decorates the podium of the German Green Party’s congress in Berlin, Germany yesterday. Germany’s Greens party pledged to fight a joint battle with the Social Democrats against Chancellor Angela Merkel in elections five months away as it wrapped up a three-day party congress yesterday. — AFP

German Greens vow to unseat Merkel with SPD BERLIN: Germany’s Greens pledged to fight a joint battle with the centre-left Social Democrats against conservative Chancellor Angela Merkel in elections five months away as it wrapped up a three-day party congress yesterday. The Greens, who grew out of the 1970s peace, anti-nuclear and environmental movements, are now the country’s third biggest political force and are hoping to return to national government with the campaign slogan “Germany is renewable.” At their Berlin party congress the Greens, who score around 15 percent in polls, committed to stick with the Social Democrats as alliance partners despite the weakness of that party’s would-be chancellor Peer Steinbrueck, whose campaign has been hobbled by a series of missteps. The fact that a “red-green” alliance is now trailing Merkel’s coalition government in polls has raised talk about a once-taboo idea-that the Greens could turn to Merkel’s conservative party, if both sides needed it to form a coalition government after the September 22 poll. But the Green state premier of BadenWuerttemberg, Winfried Kretschmann, confidently declared that red-green state governments are “the vanguard” for the next federal government, telling delegates: “We can win these elections because the citizens can trust us.” One of the two top Greens candidates, Katrin Goering-Eckardt, a Christian church leader who like Merkel hails from the for-

mer East Germany, told the meeting that the Greens do not represent a narrow interest group but are “the lobby for the real life out there.” The previous day, Sigmar Gabriel became the first Social Democratic Party (SPD) chief to address a Greens meeting, rallying members for a joint fight against Merkel and her eurozone crisis management which Gabriel labelled a “policy that has no tomorrow ” . The second in the Greens duo of top candidates, Juergen Trittin, argued that the party already governs with its partners in states that cover 50 million of Germany’s roughly 80 million people, and that it hopes to “convince the other 30 million.” Speaking to the Handelsblatt daily, Trittin quipped that one could now ride a bicycle across much of the country “without the risk of hitting a Christian Democratic state premier along the way.”As the party agreed on its campaign manifesto in Berlin, it pledged it would raise taxes on the rich and speed up Germany’s transition from nuclear power to renewable energies-a long-time Greens demand adopted by Merkel after the 2011 Fukushima disaster. The party also demanded a minimum wage of at least 8.50 euros ($11) an hour, pledged to fight for a more democratic Europe, and said it would stop German weapons exports to countries with questionable human rights records, citing sales of armoured vehicles to Saudi Arabia and Qatar. — AFP

WASHINGTON: Russian authorities secretly recorded a telephone conversation in 2011 in which one of the Boston bombing suspects vaguely discussed jihad with his mother, officials said Saturday, days after the US government finally received details about the call. In another conversation, the mother of nowdead bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev was recorded talking to someone in southern Russia who is under FBI investigation in an unrelated case, officials said. The conversations are significant because, had they been revealed earlier, they might have been enough evidence for the FBI to initiate a more thorough investigation of the Tsarnaev family. As it was, Russian authorities told the FBI only that they had concerns that Tamerlan and his mother were religious extremists. With no additional information, the FBI conducted a limited inquiry and closed the case in June 2011. Two years later, authorities say Tamerlan and his brother, Dzhohkar, detonated two homemade bombs near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing three and injuring more than 260. Tamerlan was killed in a police shootout and Dzhohkar is under arrest. In the past week, Russian authorities turned over to the United States information it had on Tamerlan and his mother, Zubeidat Tsarnaeva. The Tsarnaevs are ethnic Chechens who emigrated from southern Russia to the Boston area over the past 11 years. Even had the FBI received the information from the Russian wiretaps earlier, it’s not clear that the government could have prevented the attack. In early 2011, the Russian FSB internal security service intercepted a conversation between Tamerlan and his mother vaguely discussing jihad, according to US officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the investigation with reporters. The two discussed the possibility of Tamerlan going to Palestine, but he told his mother he didn’t speak the language there, according to the officials, who reviewed the information Russia shared with the US. In a second call, Zubeidat Tsarnaeva spoke with a man in the Caucasus region of Russia who was under FBI investigation. Jacqueline Maguire, a spokeswoman for the FBI’s Washington Field Office, where that investigation was based, declined to comment. There was no information in the conversation that suggested a plot inside the United States, officials said. It was not immediately clear why

BOSTON: This Monday, April 15, 2013 file photo provided by Bob Leonard shows bombing suspects Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, center right in black hat, and his brother, Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev, 19, center left in white hat, approximately 10-20 minutes before the blasts that struck the Boston Marathon. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s legal defense is in the hands of Miriam Conrad, the chief federal public defender for Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. — AP Russian authorities didn’t share more information at the time. It is not unusual for countries, including the US, to be cagey with foreign authorities about what intelligence is being collected. Nobody was available to discuss the matter early yesterday at FSB offices in Moscow. Jim Treacy, the FBI’s legal attache in Moscow between 2007 and 2009, said the Russians long asked for US assistance regarding Chechen activity in the United States that might be related to terrorism. “On any given day, you can get some very good cooperation,” Treacy said. “The next you might find yourself totally shut out.” Zubeidat Tsarnaeva has denied that she or her sons were involved in terrorism. She has said she believed her sons have been framed by US authorities. But Ruslan Tsarni, an uncle of the Tsarnaev brothers and Zubeidat’s former brotherin-law, said Saturday he believes the mother had a “big-time influence” as her older son increasingly embraced his Muslim faith and decided to quit boxing and school. After receiving the narrow tip from Russia in March 2011, the FBI opened a preliminary investigation into Tamerlan and his mother. But the scope was extremely limited under the FBI’s internal procedures. After a few months, they

found no evidence Tamerlan or his mother were involved in terrorism. The FBI asked Russia for more information. After hearing nothing, it closed the case in June 2011. In the fall of 2011, the FSB contacted the CIA with the same information. Again the FBI asked Russia for more details and never heard back. At that time, however, the CIA asked that Tamerlan’s and his mother’s name be entered into a massive US terrorism database. The CIA declined to comment Saturday. Authorities have said they’ve seen no connection between the brothers and a foreign terrorist group. Dzhohkar told FBI interrogators that he and his brother were angry over wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and the deaths of Muslim civilians there. Family members have said Tamerlan was religiously apathetic until 2008 or 2009, when he met a conservative Muslim convert known only to the family as Misha. Misha, they said, steered Tamerlan toward a stricter version of Islam. Two US officials say investigators believe they have identified Misha. While it was not clear whether the FBI had spoken to him, the officials said they have not found a connection between Misha and the Boston attack or terrorism in general. — AP

Leftist priests: Francis can fix church ‘in ruins’ BUENOS AIRES: A new pope from Latin America known for ministering to the poor in his country’s slums is raising the hopes of advocates of liberation theology, whose leftist social activism had alarmed previous pontiffs. Prominent liberation theologian Leonardo Boff said Pope Francis has what it takes to fix a church “in ruins” and shares his movement’s commitment to building a church for the world’s poor. “With this pope, a Jesuit and a pope from the Third World, we can breathe happiness,” Boff said Saturday at a Buenos Aires book fair. “Pope Francis has both the vigor and tenderness that we need to create a new spiritual world.” The 74-year-old Brazilian theologian was pressured to remain silent by previous popes who tried to draw a hard line between socially active priests and leftist politics. As Argentina’s leading cardinal before he became pope, Francis reinforced this line, suggesting in 2010 that reading the Gospel with a Marxist interpretation only gets priests in trouble. But Boff says the label of a closed-minded conservative simply doesn’t fit with Francis. “Pope Francis comes with the perspective that many of us in Latin America share. In our churches we do not just discuss theological theories, like in European churches. Our churches work together to support universal causes, causes like human rights, from the perspective of the poor, the destiny of humanity that is suffering, services for people living on the margins.” The liberation theology movement, which seeks to free lives as well as souls, emerged in the 1960s and quickly spread, especially in Latin America. Priests and church laypeople became deeply involved in human rights and social struggles. Some were caught up in clashes between repressive governments and rebels, sometimes at the cost of their lives. The movement’s martyrs include El Salvador ’s Archbishop Oscar Romero, whose increasing criticism of his country’s military-run government provoked his assassination as he was saying Mass in 1980. He was killed by thugs connected to the militar y hierarchy a day after he preached that “no soldier is obliged to obey an order that is contrary to the will of God.”

His killing presaged a civil war that killed nearly 90,000 over the next 12 years. Romero’s beatification cause languished under popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI due to their opposition to liberation theology, but he was put back on track to becoming a saint days after Francis became pope. Scores of other liberation theologians were killed in the 1970s and 1980s. Six Jesuit teachers were slaughtered at their university in El Salvador in 1989. Other priests and lay workers were tortured and vanished in the prisons of Chile and Argentina. Some were shot to death while demanding land rights for the poor in Brazil. A handful went further and picked up arms, or died accompanying rebel columns as chaplains, such as American Jesuit James Carney, who died in Honduras in 1983. While even John Paul embraced the “preferential option for the poor” at the heart of the movement, some church leaders were unhappy to see church intellectuals mixing doses of Marxism and class struggle into their analysis of the Gospel. It was a powerfully attractive mixture for idealistic Latin Americans who were raised in Catholic doctrine, educated by the region’s army of Marxist-influenced teachers, and outraged by the hunger, inequality and bloody repression all around them. John Paul and his chief theologian, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, drove some of the most ardent and experimental liberation theologians out of the priesthood, castigated some of those who remained, and ensured that the bishops and cardinals they promoted took a wary view of leftist social activism. Yet much of the movement remained, practiced by thousands of grassroots “base communities” working out of local parishes across the hemisphere, nurtured by nuns, priests and a few bishops who put freedom from hunger, poverty and social injustice at the heart of the Church’s spiritual mission. Hundreds of advocates at a conference in Brazil last year declared themselves ready for a comeback. “At times embers are hidden beneath the ashes,” said the meeting’s final declaration, which expressed hopes of stirring ablaze “a fire that lights other fires in the church and in society.” — AP

VATICAN: Pope Francis waves to the crowd as he leaves St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican after he celebrated the holy Mass and conferral of the sacrament of confirmation, yesterday. The Pontiff in his role as Bishop of Rome bestowed the sacrament of Confirmation on a group of young people from all over the world. — AP

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


NY officials seek human remains amid plane debris NEW YORK: The medical examiner’s office plans to search for Sept. 11 human remains in an alley behind a mosque near the World Trade Center where airplane landing gear was suddenly discovered. The rusted landing gear piece is believed to be from one of two hijacked airliners that decimated the twin towers in 2001, exploding with fiery debris and killing thousands of people. On Saturday, yellow police tape blocked access to a metal door that leads to the hidden alley behind 51 Park Place. The chief medical examiner’s spokeswoman, Ellen Borakove, said the area first will be tested as part of a standard health and safety evaluation for possible toxicity. She said sifting for

human remains is to begin Tuesday morning. Retired fire department deputy chief Jim Riches, who lost his son in the terror attack, visited the site on Saturday. He said the latest news left him feeling “upset.” “The finding of this landing gear,” he said, “just goes to show that we need federal people in here to do a comprehensive, full search of lower Manhattan to make sure that we don’t get any more surprises,” as happened in 2007 when body parts were discovered in nearby sewers and manhole covers. Of the nearly 3,000 victims, Riches noted, about 1,000 families have never recovered any remains. The New York Police Department has declared the alley, between the mosque site and a luxury loft rental building, a crime scene

where nothing may be disturbed until the medical examiner’s office completes its work. It’s unclear how long that may take, Borakove said. The piece of wreckage was discovered Wednesday by surveyors inspecting the planned Islamic community center, known as Park51, on behalf of the building’s owner, police said. The landing gear was wedged between the back walls of the apartment building and the mosque, which once prompted virulent national debate about Islam and free speech. An inspector on the mosque site’s roof noticed the debris, which includes a clearly visible Boeing Co. identification number, police spokesman Paul Browne said. Chicago-based Boeing spokesman John Dern could not confirm whether

the ID matched the American Airlines plane or the United Airlines plane hijacked by Islamic extremists on Sept. 11, 2001. He said Boeing has been asked to take part in the examination of images of the airplane part by the National Transportation Safety Board, which is providing assistance to New York authorities overseeing the probe. The twisted metal part - jammed in an 18-inch-wide (45-centimeter-wide), trash-laden passageway between the buildings - has cables and levers on it and is about 5 feet (1.5 meters) high, 17 inches (43 centimeters) wide and 4 feet (1.2 meters) long, police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Friday. “It’s a manifestation of a horrific terrorist act a block and a half away from

where we stand,” he said after visiting the alley. The commissioner noted that a piece of rope intertwined with the part looks like a broken pulley that may have come down from the roof of the Islamic community center. When plans for the center became public in 2010, opponents said they didn’t want a mosque so close to where Islamic extremists attacked, but supporters said the center would promote harmony between Muslims and followers of other faiths. The building includes a Muslim prayer space that has been open for three years. After protests died down, the center hosted its first exhibit last year. The space remains under renovation. — AP

Mississippi man charged in suspicious letters case Charged with ‘developing, possessing’ ricin

WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama talks with Michael Clemente, Executive Vice President of Fox News, as White House Correspondent Association President Ed Henry, Chief White House Correspondent for Fox News, sits right, during the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton Hotel, Saturday, in Washington. — AP

Obama jokes about second-term changes WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama joked Saturday about his plans for a radical second-term evolution from “strapping young Socialist” to retiree golfer, all with a new hairstyle like first lady Michelle’s. Obama used this year’s annual White House Correspondents’ Association dinner to poke fun at himself and some of his political adversaries, asking if it was still possible to be brought down a peg after 41/2 years as commander-in-chief. Entering to the rap track “All I Do Is Win” by DJ Khaled, Obama joked about how reelection would allow him to unleash a radical agenda. But then he showed a picture of himself golfing on a mock magazine cover of “Senior Leisure.” “I’m not the strapping young Socialist that I used to be,” the president remarked, and then recounted his recent 2-for-22 basketball shooting performance at the White House Easter Egg hunt. But Obama’s most dramatic shift for the next four years appeared to be aesthetic. He presented a montage of shots featuring him with bangs similar to those sometimes sported by his wife. Obama closed by noting the nation’s recent tragedies in Massachusetts and Texas, praising Americans of all stripes from first responders to local journalists for serving the public good. Saturday night’s banquet not far from the White House attracted the usual assortment of stars from Hollywood and beyond. Actors Kevin Spacey, Julia LouisDreyfus and Claire Danes, who play government characters on series, were among the attendees, as was Korean entertainer Psy. Several Cabinet members, governors and

members of Congress were present. And despite coming at a somber time, nearly two weeks after the deadly Boston Marathon bombing and 10 days after a devastating fertilizer plant explosion in West, Texas, the president and political allies and rivals alike took the opportunity to enjoy some humor. Late-night talk-show host Conan O’Brien headlined the event. Some of Obama’s jokes came at his Republican rivals’ expense. He asked that the GOP’s minority outreach begin with him as a “trial run” and said he’d take his recent charm offensive with Republicans on the road, including to a book-burning event with Rep. Michele Bachmann. Casino magnate Sheldon Adelson would have had better success getting Obama out of office if he simply offered the president $100 million to drop out of last year’s race, Obama quipped. And on the 2016 election, the president noted in self-referential irony that potential Republican candidate Sen. Marco Rubio wasn’t qualified because he hasn’t even served a full term in the Senate. Obama only served less than four years of his sixyear Senate term before he was elected president in 2008. The gala also was an opportunity for six journalists, including Associated Press White House Correspondent Julie Pace, to be honored for their coverage of the presidency and national issues. The New Yorker’s Ryan Lizza won the Aldo Beckman Award, which recognizes excellence in the coverage of the presidency. Pace won the Merriman Smith Award for a print journalist for coverage on deadline. — AP

Venezuela Capriles raised false hopes on vote audit CARACAS: Venezuela’s electoral authority said on Saturday the opposition created false hopes about a vote audit being prepared after President Nicolas Maduro’s narrow election win, adding that his rival had failed to present compelling proof of foul play. The National Electoral Council had stressed from the start that the “expanded” audit it agreed to after the April 14 vote would not change the results, which made Maduro the successor to the late socialist leader Hugo Chavez. Opposition leader Henrique Capriles says there were thousands of irregularities during the vote, and that his own calculations showed he won. He says he will challenge the outcome in the OPEC nation’s courts. “ We have always insisted that Capriles had the right to challenge the process,” Tibisay Lucena, president of the electoral council, said in a televised national broadcast. “But it is also his obligation to present proof.” She dismissed various opposition submissions alleging voting irregularities as lacking key details, and said Capriles had subsequently tried to present the audit in very different terms than the electoral council had agreed to. “It has been manipulated to generate false expectations about the process, including making it look like the consequence of the wider audit could affect the election results,” she said. Capriles has said that unless the audit includes all the relevant paperwork from polling centers, his team would not take part in a process that would end up being “a joke.” He has conceded that his legal challenge to Maduro’s election faces a difficult path through the South American

country’s courts. Critics say Chavez packed the judiciary with loyal political appointees during his 14 years in power. Capriles, a 40-year-old centrist state governor, confounded opinion polls to run a close finish against Maduro in the election, held just five weeks after Chavez’s death from cancer. Capriles lost by less than two percentage points, according to official results. The government blames Capriles for post-election violence that it says killed nine people, and the “Chavista”dominated Congress is investigating him in connection with the unrest. On Saturday, security forces arrested a retired general who is now a senior official with an opposition party and was recorded on video apparently advising rioters during clashes with police in a Caracas square a day after the election. The opposition said the arrest was “illegal and cowardly.” The government also has arrested an American citizen it says was financing opposition student protesters to destabilize the country on behalf of an unnamed U.S. intelligence agency. Relatives and friends of Timothy Hallet Tracy, 34, described him to U.S. media as a documentary-maker who was in Venezuela to make a film about the presidential election. Some Maduro allies say the violence was proof that the opposition tried to launch a coup, while the opposition accuses the authorities of exaggerating the trouble and counting victims of common crime among its figures. Both sides have called on their followers to march again on May 1, creating another potential flashpoint. On Saturday, Maduro was on an official visit to Cuba to strengthen ties between the two countries. — Reuters

BRANDON: An ex-martial arts instructor made ricin and put the poison in letters to President Barack Obama and others, the FBI charged Saturday, days after dropping similar charges against an Elvis impersonator who insisted he had been framed. The arrest of 41-year-old James Everett Dutschke early Saturday capped a week in which investigators initially zeroed in on a rival of Dutschke’s, then decided they had the wrong man. The hunt for a suspect revealed tie after small-town tie between the two men and the 80-year-old county judge who, along with Obama and US Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi, was among the targets of the letters. Dutschke’s house, business and vehicles in Tupelo were searched earlier in the week often by crews in hazardous materials suits and he had been under surveillance. Dutschke (pronounced DUHS’-kee) was charged with “knowingly developing, producing, stockpiling, transferring, acquiring, retaining and possessing a biological agent, toxin and delivery system, for use as a weapon, to wit: ricin.” US attorney Felicia Adams and Daniel McMullen, the FBI agent in charge in Mississippi, made the announcement in a news release Saturday. Dutschke’s attorney, Lori Nail Basham, said she had no comment. Earlier this week she said that Dutschke was cooperating fully with investigators and Dutschke has insisted he had nothing to do with the letters. He was arrested about 12:50 a.m. at his house in Tupelo and is expected in court today. He faces up to life in prison, if convicted. The letters, which tests showed were tainted with ricin, were sent April 8 to Obama, Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi and Mississippi judge, Sadie Holland. Wicker spokesman Ryan Taylor said since the investigation was ongoing, the senator couldn’t comment. The first suspect fingered by the FBI was Paul Kevin Curtis, 45, an Elvis impersonator.

James Everett Dutschke He was arrested on April 17 at his Corinth, Miss., home, but the charges were dropped six days later and Curtis, who says he was framed, was released from jail. The focus then turned to Dutschke, who has ties to the former suspect, the judge and the senator. Earlier in the week, as investigators searched his primar y residence in Tupelo, Dutschke told The Associated Press, “I don’t know how much more of this I can take.” “I’m a patriotic American. I don’t have any grudges against anybody. ... I did not send the letters,” Dutschke said. Curtis’ attorney, Christi McCoy, said Saturday: “We are relieved but also saddened. This crime is nothing short of diabolical. I have seen a lot of meanness in the past two decades, but this stops me in my tracks.” Some of the language in the letters was similar to posts on Curtis’ Facebook page and they were signed, “I am KC and I approve this message.” Curtis’ signoff online was often similar.

And Dutschke and Curtis were acquainted. Curtis said they had talked about possibly publishing a book on a conspiracy that Curtis insists he has uncovered to sell body parts on a black market. But he said they later had a feud. Curtis’ attorneys have said they believe their client was set up. An FBI agent testified that no evidence of ricin was found in searches of Curtis’ home. Curtis attorney Hal Neilson said the defense gave authorities a list of people who may have had a reason to hurt Curtis and Dutschke came up. Judge Holland also is a common link between the two men, and both know Wicker. Holland was the presiding judge in a 2004 case in which Curtis was accused of assaulting a Tupelo attorney a year earlier. Holland sentenced him to six months in the county jail. He served only part of the sentence, according to his brother. And Holland’s family has had political skirmishes with Dutschke. Her son, Steve Holland, a Democratic state representative, said he thinks his mother’s only other encounter with Dutschke was at a rally in the town of Verona in 2007, when Dutschke ran as a Republican against Steve Holland. Holland said his mother confronted Dutschke after he made a derogatory speech about the Holland family. She demanded that he apologize, which Holland says he did. On Saturday, Steve Holland said he can’t say for certain that Dutschke is the person who sent the letter to his mother but added, “I feel confident the FBI knows what they are doing.” “We’re ready for this long nightmare to be over,” Holland told The Associated Press. He said he’s not sure why someone would target his mother. Holland said he believes Dutschke would have more reason to target him than his mother. “Maybe he thinks the best way to get to me is to get to the love of my life, which is my mother,” Holland said. — AP

Iceland opposition claims election win REYKJAVIK: Iceland’s centre-right opposition declared victory Sunday in parliamentary elections, as voters punished the incumbent leftist government for harsh austerity measures during its four years at the helm. If confirmed, it would mark a return to power for the right-wing Independence Party and the centrist-agrarian Progressive Party, which both want to end the Atlantic island nation’s European Union accession talks. “ The Independence Party is called to duty again,” Bjarni Benediktsson, the party’s 43-yearold leader, told supporters, saying he was ready to negotiate a coalition that would lead the country. “The situation now calls for change,” he said. As of early yesterday, a count of 95 percent of the votes suggested his party would get 19 seats in parliament, up from 16. The two parties have staged a remarkable comeback since they were ousted in a 2009 election after presiding over the worst financial crisis to ever hit the small nation of 320,000 people.

Before the crisis, the mortgages offered by Icelandic banks were linked to inflation, resulting in spiralling borrowing costs for homeowners when the krona collapsed against other currencies. After four years of tax hikes and austerity designed to meet international lenders’ demands, the Independence Party has offered debt-laden voters tax credits. The Independents’ historic coalition partner, the Progressive Party, which is set to more than double its number of seats to 19 from nine, has vowed to go even further by asking banks to write off some of the debt. “We will change Iceland for the better very fast in the coming months and years,” said the party’s leader, 38-year-old Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson. The biggest party traditionally picks the prime minister, and polls in the final weeks of campaigning had put the two parties neck-and-neck. With 95 percent of the votes counted, the Independence Party was ahead in the popular vote, with 26.7 percent against 24.3 percent for the Progressive Party. The incumbent social democratic

Alliance Party was looking at a drop in parliamentary seats from 19 to nine. The party leader, Prime Minister Johanna Sigurdardottir, who is 70, said prior to the poll she was retiring. The election was largely seen as a protest vote, and few members of the electorate had anything positive to say about their politicians as they left the polling booths on election day Saturday. “The government was no good. They were elected for us, the people, and they didn’t do anything for the nation,” said Thordur Oskarsson, 73. Another voter, 49-year-old Anna Katrin Kristiansdottir, said “everything was in ruins” when the leftist government took office, and accused voters of having a short memory. “That’s why the Independence Party and the Progressive Party, which led us to the disaster, are coming back already,” she said. The opposition victory could spell the end of EU membership negotiations, as both the Progressives and the Independents are in favour of putting a halt to Iceland’s bid. But the issue has taken a back-

seat to Icelanders’ falling spending power and sliding living standards. “I think there is a broader lesson from Iceland in that if the goal is to preserve living standards, reduce unemployment and so on, then following a policy of strict austerity is not the way to go,” said Kolbein Stefansson, a sociology lecturer at the University of Iceland. The social democratic-led government had been “quite successful in restoring the economy”, but failed to make that point to the electorate, he argued. “I think a lot of people feel that the government has been representing the system more than the interests of the families and people in Iceland,” he said. Voter discontent has spawned an unprecedented number of political parties. One of them, the online filesharing activist movement Pirate Party, looked likely to win three seats in parliament. This would make it the first of its kind elected to a national parliament. This development, if confirmed, would be “historic for the Pirate movement,” said Birgitta Jonsdottir of the Pirate Party. — AFP

REYKJAVIK: Progressive Party supporters celebrate following general elections on Saturday, in Reykjavik, Iceland. Five years after Iceland’s economic collapse, early returns signaled that voters are favoring the return of a center-right, Eurosceptic government, widely blamed for the nation’s financial woes. — AP

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Roadside bomb kills three policemen in Afghanistan KABUL: A remote-controlled roadside bomb killed three police officers in eastern Afghanistan yesterday, an attack the Taliban claimed as the opening round of their spring offensive. The bomb exploded in Ghazni province beneath a police convoy that was traveling to the district of Zana Khan to take part in a military operation against insurgents, Mohammad Ali Ahmadi, the province’s deputy governor, told The Associated Press.

He said the blast destroyed the vehicle carrying Col. Mohammad Hussain, the deputy provincial police chief, killing him and two other officers. Ahmadi said two officers also were wounded in the insurgent operation, adding that it clearly targeted Hussain. Taleban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid claimed responsibility in an email sent to the media. He called the bombing the first attack in the spring offensive that Taleban’s leader-

ship said it was starting yesterday. April already has been the deadliest month this year for attacks across the country, where Afghan security forces are increasingly taking the lead on the battlefield in the war that has lasted more than 11 years. Insurgents have escalated attacks recently in a bid to gain power and influence ahead of next year’s presidential election and the planned withdrawal of most US and other

foreign combat troops by the end of 2014. US-backed efforts to try to reconcile the Islamic militant movement with the Afghan government are gaining little traction. Also Sunday, the US Air Force said the coalition plane that crashed the day before in southern Afghan, killing four service members, was a MC-12 Liberty aircraft. The twinengine turboprop plane provides intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, or

direct support to ground forces. It crashed in Zabul province, about 110 miles (177 kilometers) northeast of Kandahar Air Field, the Air Force statement said. The four Air Force service members, whose bodies were recovered, were deployed to the 361st Expeditionary Reconnaissance Squadron with the 451st Air Expeditionary Wing at Kandahar Air Field, the statement said. —AP

Owner of collapsed building arrested fleeing to India Bangladesh building toll reaches 377

AMRITSAR: Wife Sukhpreet Kaur, second right, sister Dalbir Kaur, second left, and daughters Poonam, left, and Swapandeep of Sarabjit Singh, an Indian spy on death row in Pakistan offer prayers at the Golden Temple before crossing the border to Pakistan, in Amritsar, India, yesterday. — AP

Pakistan stops consular access to Indian spy NEW DELHI: Pakistan yesterday denied consular access to an Indian national on death row who is fighting for his life after being attacked by fellow inmates, Indian government officials told AFP in New Delhi. Sarabjit Singh, who was sentenced to death 16 years ago on espionage charges by a Pakistani court, was rushed to hospital Friday with multiple wounds, including a severe head injury, after an argument in Lahore’s Kot Lakhpat Jail. “Officials from the Indian High Commission in Pakistan were not allowed to visit Sarabjit Singh on Sunday. The authorities have also refused to share his medical updates with the Indian officials,” said a senior Indian official, speaking under the condition of anonymity. The officer said the Indian foreign ministry is making “every possible attempt” to get information about Singh’s health and using every “diplomatic mechanism to get an update about the situation”. “It is crucial for us to know about Singh’s health and Pakistan cannot deny information to India,” said another government official in New Delhi. The Pakistan foreign ministry was not immediately available for comment. Singh is fighting

for his life in the hospital’s intensive care unit (ICU) after he was hit with bricks and other blunt objects by inmates. His wife, two daughters and sister arrived in Pakistan by the land border at Wagah, near the eastern city of Lahore. “We came here to see him and to meet him, I have been allowed to stay with him in hospital,” Singh’s sister Dalbir Kaur told reporters. “I will go directly to hospital and will meet him to see his condition and to know whether he needs anything.” She thanked Pakistani people for their prayers for her brother’s recovery and hoped that he would get well soon and be allowed to return to India. Singh’s lawyer Owais Sheikh earlier told AFP that his client had received threats following the execution of a Kashmiri separatist in India. Mohammed Afzal Guru was hanged in New Delhi on February 9 for his part in a deadly Islamist attack on the Indian parliament in 2001. Singh, 49, was convicted for alleged involvement in a string of bomb attacks in Punjab province in Pakistan which killed 14 people in 1990. His mercy petitions were rejected by the courts and former president Pervez Musharraf.— AFP

SAVAR: Bangladesh police yesterday arrested the owner of a garment factory block that collapsed last week killing more than 377 people as hopes faded for survivors at the disaster site. Property tycoon Sohel Rana was arrested as he attempted to flee to India and will face charges over the ruined eight-storey Rana Plaza, which like many other structures around the capital Dhaka violated the building code. “He has been arrested and will be tried,” the country’s deputy home minister Shamsul Haque Tuku told reporters, referring to Rana, who is reportedly a ruling party official. Amid the rubble, hundreds of rescuers continued the grim and painstaking task of searching for survivors with another two people pulled out alive after daybreak 100 hours after the collapse. The focus will soon turn from one of rescue to clean-up, with the ever-growing stench of decomposition indicating many more bodies will be found once heavy lifting and earth-moving equipment gets to work. “We have moved heavy equipment to the site but are still waiting for the clearance from the rescue workers inside the wreckage that no one is trapped alive,” national fire chief Ahmed Ali told AFP at the scene. Rescuers have been using only hand tools such as cutters and drills, fearing the use of cranes would jeopardise the chances of survival of anyone still clinging on four days after the accident on Wednesday morning. The tragedy has once again focused attention on the poor safety conditions in the $20 billion Bangladeshi garment industry, which is the world’s second biggest after China, supplying many big Western clothing brands. Britain’s Primark and Spain’s Mango have acknowledged their products were made in the block, while an AFP reporter found shirts labelled “United Colors of Benetton” in the debris. The Italian group has denied having a supplier in the building. The accident has prompted fresh accusations from activists that Western firms place profit before safety by sourcing their products from a country where textile workers

DHAKA: Property tycoon Sohel Rana (C) is presented at a press conference at the Rapic Action Battalion (RAB) headquarters in Dhaka yesterday. Bangladesh police yesterday arrested the owner of a garment factory block that collapsed last week killing more than 375 people as hopes faded for survivors at the disaster site. — AP often earn less than $40 a month. Protesters holding signs reading “Love Fashion Hate Sweatshops” and “Primark’s Shame” picketed Primark’s flagship store in London on Saturday. As outrage over the country’s worst industrial disaster spread at home and abroad, police have stepped up efforts to find the accused and border officials have been put on the highest alert. Building owner Rana was detained at Bangladesh’s main border crossing with India on Sunday while police were also hunting for Spanish entrepreneur David Mayor, whose manufacturing company operated from Rana Plaza. Mayor, who spoke to AFP in 2009 for a story on ethical manufacturing in Bangladesh, co-owns

Phantom-Tac, which he said was run with a strong “social concern”. Three factory owners have so far been arrested. They face a maximum five years in jail over charges of “causing death due to negligence”, police say. The case was filed after survivors told police how managers had forced them to return to work on Wednesday despite an evacuation the day before when cracks appeared on the outside of the building. Senior investigating officer Kaiser Matubbor said two municipal engineers who gave the building the all-clear after an inspection on Tuesday were also arrested and could face charges of death due to negligence.— AFP

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


N Korea set to stage major military drill SEOUL: North Korea appears to be gearing up for a major military exercise, a report said yesterday, amid tensions over an expected missile test and South Korea’s pullout from a joint industrial complex. Preparations are under way near the North’s western port of Nampo for a combined live-fire drill involving artillery units and air force jets, the South’s Yonhap news agency said, citing a Seoul government source. “It appears that the scale of the drill will be

quite big,” the unnamed official was quoted as saying, voicing fears of military provocations against the South or a missile test by Pyongyang during the exercise. A North Korean artillery attack on a South Korean island in November 2010 killed four people. Seoul also holds Pyongyang responsible for the sinking of one of its naval vessels with the loss of 46 sailors the same year.Angered by new United Nations sanctions over its third nuclear test in February and joint South Korea-US military

drills-due to end on Tuesday-the North has for weeks been issuing threats of missile strikes and nuclear war. ZThe expected missile launch has kept Seoul and Washington on heightened alert for the past month, particularly on key dates such as the founding anniversary of the North’s military and the birth of its late founding leader. But Pyongyang, which has a habit of linking high-profile military tests with key dates, celebrated the key dates without the test, fanning

speculations that the wait may even take months. Another Seoul military official quoted by Yonhap said the communist North may try to “fan military tension” after South Korea pulls out all its remaining workers from a jointly run factory park. Kaesong-built in 2004 just north of the border as a rare symbol of inter-Korea cooperation and a valued source of hard currency for the impoverished North-has fallen victim to the growing cross-border

tensions. Seoul on Friday announced that it would withdraw all of its remaining workers from the site after Pyongyang rejected its ultimatum to join formal negotiations on restarting the stalled operations. Dozens of workers returned on Saturday and the remaining 50 are expected to leave tomorrow, a move that experts say could lead to the permanent closure of the complex, seen as a bellwether of stability on the Korean peninsula. — AFP

‘Restoration of sovereignty day’ signals hope: Japan PM Emperor’s attendance adds weight to ceremony

KUALA LUMPUR: Supporters hold placards and balloons during a gathering to mark the anniversary of Bersih 3.0 calling for electoral reform, ahead of the country’s 13th general election in Kuala Lumpur yesterday. Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim held a slight edge in support over Malaysian Premier Najib Razak, according to a survey released on April 26 ahead of a hotly anticipated election showdown on May 5. — AFP

Pakistan ‘Robin Hood’ aims to wrest election from the rich MUZAFFARGARH: With a flick of the reins, Jamshed Dasti launched his run for Pakistan’s parliament from the back of a donkey cart, cantering through the rutted streets of his home town to file his nomination papers as supporters erupted into cheers. With the opening act in his campaign unfolding exactly as planned, Dasti beamed the beatific smile of a man who might look like an underdog, but who is sure he has the momentum to humble his wealthy rivals at next month’s general elections. His choice of transport was no accident: Dasti wants to persuade poor voters that Muzaffargarh, a farming district in Punjab province long ruled by a Pajero-driving, land-owning aristocracy, is about to change forever. For his biggest rivals are none other than the Khar dynasty, which has wielded huge influence in the district for decades, and whose most famous heiress, Hina Rabbani Khar, was foreign minister until last month. “Because of me, people have realized they can have a better life,” Dasti told Reuters. “Their poor neighbour is now running for elections against the lords of a vast kingdom. How can this not give them hope?” The son of an illiterate labourer and part-time wrestler, Dasti is a rare example of how a man of modest means can mount a credible challenge to a patronage system prevalent in Punjab where the landed elite can perpetuate their grip on power by intimidating tenants or buying votes with bribes. His campaign feeds a broader hope that the May elections - against a backdrop of Taliban attacks, record sectarian unrest, chronic power cuts and a near-failed economy - can boost Pakistan’s fraught experiment with democracy by proving that voters in at least some areas have a chance to elect somebody not much different to themselves. Unlike some would-be giant-killers who have little hope at the polls, which will mark Pakistan’s first transition between civilian-led governments, Dasti is no rank outsider. After years working as a community volunteer, he was elected to the local council before winning a seat in the National Assembly at the last elections in 2008 on a ticket for President Asif Ali Zardari’s Pakistan People’s Party. This time, as an independent, he will run for his own constituency and a neighbouring constituency that places him on a colli-

sion course with Ghulam Rabbani Khar, a prominent land owner and Hina Rabbani Khar’s father. While the Khars may have a fight on their hands, Hina Rabbani Khar believes Dasti’s philanthropy is overblown. “People call him Robin Hood but things really aren’t that simple,” Khar said with a wry smile at her family estate in the region of rippling wheat fields and cotton plantations. Khar ’s signature style - silk blouse, pearls, chiffon head scarf perfectly in place - cuts a stark contrast to Dasti’s visibly unironed clothes and sandals. Dasti appeared to relish his role as an underdog this month when he spent a week in jail over allegations he had submitted a fake degree certificate in his nomination papers. The charges were later withdrawn. “When I was growing up and began to understand how the system worked, I promised that as surely as I had drunk my mother’s milk, I would beat this system,” Dasti told Reuters in the superintendent’s office at the jail in the nearby city of Multan, before being led back to his cell. But the disillusionment with land owners in Muzaffargarh notwithstanding, Khar is herself admired in Pakistan for breaking the patriarchal mould of many landed families who would never contemplate allowing a daughter her advanced education or to play such a public role on the global stage. With the majority of Pakistan’s electorate living in the countryside, the outcome of the polls in Punjab, Pakistan’s most populous province and its political heartland, will undoubtedly be shaped by big, land-owning families. But Dasti’s popularity suggests that the dynamic may be in flux as Pakistan becomes accustomed to holding regular elections and the military, which has interrupted politics in the past, remains in its barracks. As a student, Dasti, who enjoys reciting poetry inspired by the Marxist philosophy of class struggle, published a weekly newsletter, garnishing its smudged pages with editorials against feudalism. He went door to door collecting donations and started Muzaffargarh’s first free ambulance service. People nicknamed him “Mr 15” after the police emergency telephone number. Even when he won a National Assembly seat, he continued to work one 15-hour shift a week as an unpaid driver for a free bus service he started. “He comes to the stop at six in the morning and sits down with the drivers for breakfast,” said Mohammad Sharif, a barber. — Reuters

AYUTTHAYA: Thai villagers and rescuers look for survivors under the wreckage of a suspension bridge crossing the Pasak river after it collapsed yesterday in Ayutthaya province, central Thailand. Police say at least four people have been killed and a dozen have been injured when the small bridge collapsed in the accident. — AP

TOKYO: Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called yesterday for a rewnewal of a “sense of hope and determination” in marking for the first time the restoration of Japan’s post-war sovereignty, part of a drive to repair what conservatives consider dented national pride. Abe, who is riding a wave of popularity after being swept back into office in a landslide election last December, wants to revise the post-war, US-drafted pacifist constitution and rewrite Japan’s wartime history with a less apologetic tone. His Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) pledged during the campaign to make April 28 “Restoration of Sovereignty Day”, to mark the day in 1952 when the San Francisco Peace Treaty took effect, formally ending World War Two and the Allied Occupation. “I want to make this a day when we can renew our sense of hope and determination for the future,” a sombre Abe, 58, told a ceremony in a hall near parliament attended by about 400 officials. “We have a responsibility to make Japan a strong and resolute country that others across the world can rely on.” The San Francisco Treaty officially declared an end to the war, required Japan to relinquish claims on other countries and territories and determined war compensation. Giving added weight to the ceremony was the presence of Emperor Akihito, 79, and Empress Michiko. Participants, mostly men in dark suits, threw their hands up into the air and cried “banzai!” or long life, to send the royal couple off. Akihito’s father, Hirohito, was Japan’s wartime leader, and made a historic broadcast announcing the terms of surrender to his people in 1945. After returning for a second stint as prime minister, Abe initially focused on policies to revive the stagnant economy. His popularity rating stands at around 70 percent, largely on hopes for his “Abenomics” mix of big spending and hyper-easy monetary policies, but there are doubts about the level of popular support for his agenda outside of economics. The prime minister has devoted greater attention in recent weeks to a more hawkish stance on security and Japanese history ahead of a July upper house election that his ruling

TOKYO: Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, top left, and attendees give cheers in front of Emperor Akihito, center left, and Empress Michiko, center right, during a ceremony in Tokyo yesterday, to mark the day Japan recovered its sovereignty under the San Francisco Peace Treaty in 1952. — AP bloc needs to win to cement its grip on power. Abe has defended the visits in the past week by more than 160 lawmakers to the Yasukuni shrine, which honours Japan’s war dead but offends neighbouring countries because it also honours Japanese war criminals. Both South Korea and Japan, where memories of Japanese military occupation remain fresh, were angered by the visits. Seoul summoned the Japanese ambassador and cancelled a visit to Tokyo by its foreign minister. Japan has also been embroiled in a territorial dispute over uninhabited islets in the East China Sea, with Abe last week saying it would be “natural” to use force to repel any Chinese attempt to land on the islands. Abe has also refused to clarify whether his cabinet endorses a landmark apology for Japan’s aggression before and during World War Two, issued by a previous governmnet in 1995. Abe has made clear that he wants to eventually

revise Article 9 of the 1947 constitution to set down Japan’s right to maintain a military for selfdefence. He first plans to try to ease the procedural requirements for constitutional changes. He also wants to change the interpretation of the constitution that has prevented Japan from exercising its right to collective self-defence, or aiding an ally under attack. Sunday’s ceremony upset residents of Japan’s southern island of Okinawa, which remained under U.S. control for another two decades until 1972. Okinawa is still a reluctant host to the bulk of up to 50,000 U.S. military forces in Japan. Residents of Okinawa held a counter-rally on Sunday describing the commemoration as a day of “humiliation” for Okinawa and not a true return of sovereignty to Japan. “In addition to Okinawa’s history, we can never forget the great burden that Okinawa bears for our national security,” Bunmei Ibuki, a lower house LDP member, told the rally. —Reuters

Thai rebels press for ‘liberation’ KUALA LUMPUR: Rebels from Thailand’s restive south yesterday said they wanted “liberation” from the kingdom and laid out a catalogue of demands, a day ahead of talks aimed at ending a bloody nine-year insurgency. Thailand held its first official peace talks with representatives of the Barisan Revolusi Nasional (BRN) in Malaysia a month ago, but deadly attacks blamed on shadowy insurgent groups in the Muslim-majority south have continued. Hassan Taib, a BRN representative, appealed in a video statement for southerners’ support for his group’s freedom struggle, saying they would administer the multi-ethnic area “fairly”. “We shall obtain liberation. After that we can rule (the area) as fairly as possible,” he said, adding the group, whose name translates as National Revolutionary Front, aimed to bring justice and prosperity to the area. Hassan’s colleague in another video said BRN wanted Muslimmajority Malaysia to mediate the talks and called for observers from other regional countries and NGOs. He also urged the release of all detainees. Thailand’s National Security Council chief Paradorn Pattanatabut said he would meet Hassan and his colleagues for a fresh round of talks today. “We have heard their calls, and we will talk to them tomorrow about their demands,” he said. “We have said clearly from the beginning that the talks must be held under Thailand’s constitution, and Malaysia will act only as a facilitator. I think Malaysia will say the same because this is Thailand’s internal issue.” More than 5,500 people have been killed in near-daily bombings and shootings in the south of Buddhistmajority Thailand since 2004. Security personnel and those connected with the government are regularly targeted, as well as Muslims perceived to be collaborating with the authorities. — AFP

MANILA: A boy passes by a man sleeping inside a wooden boat near Manila’s bay, Philippines yesterday. — AP

Philippine rebels rake it in from vote extortion MANILA: Leftist Philippine rebels are raking in millions of dollars extorting money from candidates in next month’s elections and will likely use this to buy guns, a senior military official said yesterday. Each candidate illegally pays between 50,000 and five million pesos ($1,210-121,000) to buy protection from the New People’s Army (NPA), said Major-General Jose Mabanta, commander of one of the country’s army divisions. “My estimate is that half of all political contenders are paying, half in my area. That is also true in other areas,” he told reporters. Some 18,000 posts are up for grabs in the May 13 elections, from the current crop of town and city mayors, provincial governors and members of parliament. “With the amounts involved, they (NPA) will be buying arms and ammunition and these may be fired and used against them (politicians),” Mabanta

said, warning that giving money to the rebels is illegal. The money raised dwarfs the amounts regularly extorted from mining, logging and other businesses based in the rural areas where the 4,000member guerrilla force operates, he added. “This is when really the NPAs make a killing out of their extortion,” he added. The NPA ambushed Ruth Guingona, the 78-year-old mayor of Gingoog city on the southern island of Mindanao on Saturday, killing two of her aides and leaving her and two policemen wounded. Violence linked to the polls has claimed at least 46 lives in more than 40 incidents since campaigning began in February, according to a police tally. The NPA has been waging a 44-year-old Maoist armed campaign that has claimed at least 30,000 lives, according to a government estimate. Several rounds of peace talks held since the late 1980s have gone nowhere. — AFP


MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013



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Israel ‘red line’ on Iran challenged By Crispian Balmer and Dan Williams srael risks a loss of credibility over both its “red line” for Iran’s nuclear program and its threat of military action, and its room for unilateral manoeuvre is shrinking. After years of veiled warnings that Israel might strike the Islamic Republic, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu laid out an ultimatum at the United Nations last September. Iran, he said, must not amass enough uranium at 20 percent fissile purity to fuel one bomb if enriched further. To ram the point home, he drew a red line across a cartoon bomb, guaranteeing him front page headlines around the world. However, a respected Israeli ex-spymaster says Iran has skillfully circumvented the challenge. Other influential voices say the time has passed when Israel can hit out at Iran alone, leaving it dependent on US decision-makers. “If there was a good window of opportunity to attack, it was six months ago - not necessarily today,” said Giora Eiland, a former Israeli national security adviser. Pressure from Washington, he said, had forced Israel to drop its strike plan. Israel has long insisted on the need for a convincing military threat and setting clear lines beyond which Iran’s nuclear activity should not advance, calling this the only way to persuade Iran that it must bow to international pressure. Serving officials argue that Netanyahu’s repeated warnings of the menace posed by Iran’s nuclear project have pushed the issue to the top of the global agenda and helped generate some of the toughest economic sanctions ever imposed on a nation. But some officials have also questioned the wisdom of his red line, arguing that such brinkmanship can generate unwelcome ambiguity - as the United States has discovered with its contested stance on the use of chemical weapons in Syria. Amos Yadlin, a former military intelligence chief who runs a Tel Aviv think-tank, suggested last week that Israel had also got itself into a tangle, saying Iran had expanded its nuclear capacity beyond the Israeli limit, without triggering alarms. “Today it can be said that the Iranians have crossed the red line set by Netanyahu at the UN assembly,” Yadlin told a conference at the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS), which he heads. Netanyahu’s office declined to respond to Yadlin’s remarks, noting that the prime minister, in recent public statements, had said Iran was “continuing to get closer to the red line”. Tehran denies there is any military component to its nuclear activities, saying it is focused only on civilian energy needs. It charges that Israel, widely believed to have the Middle East’s only nuclear arsenal, is the greater regional threat. Keeping in step with Netanyahu, Israeli defense and military officials issued clear warnings this month that Israel was still prepared to go it alone against Iran, once more beating the drums of war after months of relative quiet. “We will do what is necessary when it is necessary,” armed forces chief of staff Benny Gantz told Israel Radio on April 16. But there is increasing skepticism within diplomatic circles about the viability of such an option. Envoys doubt that the Israeli military could now make much of a dent on Iran’s far-flung, well-fortified nuclear installations. “If nothing happened last year, I struggle to see why it will happen this year,” said a top Western diplomat in Tel Aviv, speaking on condition of anonymity given the sensitivities. Israeli President Shimon Peres has done little to bolster belief in unilateral action, making clear this month that he thought US President Barack Obama would be the one to go to war against Iran if nuclear diplomacy failed. “He knows no one else will do it,” Peres told Israeli TV. The United States offered Netanyahu a new array of military hardware last week, including refueling tankers that could be used to get fighter jets to and from Iranian targets. However, Israel cannot match the sort of firepower that the United States could bring to a battlefield. For example, Israel lacks the biggest bunker-busting bombs that experts say would be needed to penetrate Iran’s underground Fordow enrichment plant. Such limitations always cast doubt on a possible Israeli assault and the more time passes, the more the doubts grow. Ehud Barak, the previous Israeli defense minister, said in November 2011 that within nine months it would probably be impossible to halt Iran because it was increasing the number of centrifuges and its network of sites, creating what he termed a “zone of immunity”. — Reuters


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Washington Watch

Drones and Rumsfeld’s Question Dr James J Zogby arlier this week, a US Senate subcommittee held hearings on the use of drones. Most of those who testified were Constitutional law professors or terrorism experts. In what was an emotional highpoint of the proceedings, the committee also heard from a young US-educated Yemeni, Farea Al-Muslimi, whose village had been hit by a drone attack just one week earlier. With his powerful and personal testimony, Farea put his finger squarely on the problem drones should pose for American policymakers. After recounting his time in America, what he learned and how he came to love our country and its people, Farea told the committee how he returned to Yemen committed to ser ving as an ambassador for America to ordinary Yemenis. It was only then that he learned first-hand of the impact drones would have on his self-proclaimed mission. Farea described how: “Late last year, I was with an American colleague from an international media outlet on a tour of Abyan [a region in southern Yemen]. Suddenly, locals started to become paranoid. They were moving erratically and frantically pointing toward the sky. Based on their past experiences with drone strikes, they told us that the thing hovering above us-out of sight and making a strange humming noise-was an American drone. My heart sank. I was


helpless...I was standing there at the mercy of a drone... “That feeling, multiplied by the highest number mathematicians have, gripped me when my village was droned just days ago.” Farea went on in his testimony to note how he was “devastated” by the attack fearing that the use of drones “would empower the militants”, while putting his life at risk making him “look like someone who had betrayed his country by supporting America.” The Constitutional lawyers can argue until they are blue in the face whether there are legal justifications for using drones, and tacticians can similarly make the case for the relative ease with which this new technology can help us target and eliminate “bad guys” without putting American lives at risk. But the consequences of using this technology are real, as are the dangers. First and foremost, is the feeling of helplessness drones create not only among the “bad guys”, but among entire populations in the countries where they have been used. As we have seen too many times in history, air power creates enemies. People aren’t cowed by unseen overwhelming force, they resent it. And when the calm of their daily lives can be shattered by destructive force beyond their control, they hate the source that disruptive power. In the West we can marvel at the technology involved in a process by which one man thousands of miles away

can spot, identify, target, and destroy an alleged enemy. But at the other end of the line, there is fear, a loss of control, helplessness, and hatred-precisely because that unseen hand has made me afraid, has the power to bring instant death and destruction, and has rendered me helpless. The experts can boast of the drone’s efficiency and speak casually of “limited collateral damage”, but for the populations at the point of impact, every innocent killed is a victim with family and friends, and even the successful strikes create a widespread sense of terror and resentment. There are, of course, other reasons to be deeply concerned about the use of drones-especially when used in areas where we are not in a declared state of war. No matter what fancy terms we may now use to describe these attacks, in using drones we are engaged in assassinations, plain and simple. We can try to make the case for our actions, as we have, when the targets have been major figures in al Qaeda. But when we “take out” lower level, lesser known figures, who may or may not pose an “imminent threat”, our justifications ring hollow. Making the case, after the fact (especially when the “fact” is death), is a weak case, indeed. And finally, we should be concerned that while at this time we are the sole power possessing this technology, we must know that, in the not too distant future, other nations and nonstate actors will also develop drone

technology. In operating as we have, we are writing new “rules of the road”, that others will claim the right to apply in their own conflicts. I fear we will live to rue the day we threw out the rule of law, opening the door to the “law of the jungle”. Back in October, 2003, as it became clear that the Iraq war would not be a “cake walk”, then Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld wrote a memo to his staff, in which he famously asked “[a]re we capturing, killing or deterring and dissuading more terrorists every day than the madrassas and the radical clerics are recruiting, training and deploying against us?” As we now know, he may have asked the right question but, in the end, he came up with the wrong answers. At the close of his testimony, Farea AlMuslimi observed “the American and Yemeni governments are losing the war against AQAP [al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula]. Even when drone strikes kill the right people, it is at the expense of creating...more strategic problems”. Our strikes, he notes, create hatred of America, undoing all the positives generated by our remarkably effective aid programs. The strikes also perversely create sympathy and support for the very enemy we are trying to eliminate. My advice: throw out the legal treatises and the writings of the experts and read Farea’s testimony, and, in light of that, try to answer Rumsfeld’s question.Dr James J Zogby is president, Arab American Institute.

Argentine junta casts shadow over new Dutch queen By Liliana Samuel he Argentine junta her father served has cast a shadow over the future queen of the Netherlands, Maxima, but since becoming Dutch she has tried to escape the bubble she grew up in and learn the truth. Princess Maxima, the wife of Crown Prince WillemAlexander-who on Tuesday becomes Dutch king-even secretly met with relatives of victims of the brutal regime of the 1970s and 80s in her quest for the truth. The link with the most vicious of the Latin American dictatorships is such a burden that Maxima’s father, Jorge Zorreguieta, could not lead his daughter up the aisle at her 2002 wedding in Amsterdam. Not only could he not attend his daughter’s wedding, but he is also not coming to the ceremonies to mark his daughter becoming queen of the politically correct Netherlands. Maxima concealed her sadness when asked about her father in an April 17 interview. “This is a constitutional event, when my husband becomes king and my father doesn’t belong there, especially if there are issues,” Maxima said. “He remains my father, we still enjoy our private moments.” Maxima has admitted in the past that she was saddened by her parents’ absence from her wedding. Her father faithfully served general Jorge Videla’s dictatorship, first as junior minister (1976-1979) and then as agriculture minister (1979-1981). While Zorreguieta, now 85, was in government, regime opponents and others were being disappeared across the country, often tortured, drugged and thrown from aircraft into the ocean. Human rights organizations say an estimated 30,000 people were killed or disappeared. Two civil cases have been brought against him, concerning the disappearance of a doctor and a biologist from his ministry, but he has never been charged. Various other members of the dictatorship have been tried and jailed in Argentina, including general Videla who is now serving a life sentence for crimes against humanity. Zorreguieta insists that he knew nothing of the regime’s atrocities during the so-called “Dirty War”. “There are concrete cases of people who asked him for help to find some of the disappeared and he didn’t help them,” Gonzalez Guerrero, who along with Soledad Ferrari wrote the book “Maxima, a true story”, said. In 2006, Princess Maxima went to meet the Grandmothers of the


Plaza de Mayo, an association that seeks to reunite babies stolen by Videla’s regime with their biological parents. “Yes, we met with Maxima,” the association’s head Estela de Carlotto said. “It was a very positive meeting. She showed that she’s not indifferent to human rights matters. She’s very sensitive and seemed very intelligent, much more connected to Argentina than I imagined,” she said. Maxima, 41, has had to give up her Argentine nationality and is reportedly not allowed to speak Spanish in public, but is admired in Argentina, where the country is proud of her royal destiny. Estela de Carlotto said that the Dutch ambassador to Argentina called her to say she would like to meet. The meeting with the Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo was kept secret, like all of Maxima’s activities in Buenos Aires

and in Villa La Angostura, near chic Andes resort Bariloche, where her brother owns a restaurant. “The change in Maxima has been impressive and does her proud. She lived her childhood in a bubble within which they said that there were no disappeared in Argentina and that the soldiers won a war against subversion. “She came to the Netherlands thinking that and publicly defended her father. But then the penny dropped and she started to ask questions and find out what happened,” said author Guerrero. Guerrero and Ferrari say that Maxima paid subtle homage to regime victims when she was married, with 30,000 flowers representing the disappeared decorating the different places in Amsterdam where the marriage was celebrated. — AFP

AMSTERDAM: The royal palace is mirrored in the crown on a window of a shop in the center of Amsterdam yesterday. The capital is preparing for the abdication of Dutch Queen Beatrix and the investiture of Prince Willem Alexander as King on 30 April.— AFP


MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

UAE torture claims worry British PM LONDON: Prime Minister David Cameron is concerned about allegations that three Britons charged with drug offences in Dubai have been tortured, his office said yesterday, two days before the president of the United Arab Emirates visits Britain. Grant Cameron, Karl Williams and Suneet Jeerh have been held in the UAE since taking a holiday there in July 2012. Police said they had found a form of synthetic cannabis in their hired car. They are due to hear a verdict in their case today. All three pleaded not guilty to charges of possession of illegal drugs and said police had subjected them to beatings and threatened them with guns, allegations the police deny. In a letter to Reprieve, a London-based legal charity which campaigns for prisoner rights, Cameron said Britain had repeatedly raised concerns about the torture allegations with the UAE, saying the authorities’ failure to organize a full medical examination of the men was worrisome. “We continue to press for evidence of a full, impartial and independent investigation,”

Cameron wrote. Cameron’s intervention on the eve of a state visit to Britain by UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahayan was welcomed by Reprieve, which has been supporting the three men, but is likely to irritate the oil-rich Gulf state. Britain is hoping the visit will boost trade between the two countries, which has in the past focused on defence contracts.The UAE leader will arrive today and be hosted by Queen Elizabeth at Windsor Castle, hold a meeting with Cameron, and have tea with the Prince of Wales. He will be accompanied by a high-level government delegation during the two-day visit. Reprieve said the case raised troubling questions. “The prime minister’s concern is welcome, but it is hard to see how a state visit is appropriate for the president of a country which has tortured our own citizens,” Kate Higham, one of its investigators, said in a statement. “At the very least, the mistreatment of these three men must be a central issue for discussion during the visit.” — Reuters

Algerian president in Paris... Continued from Page 1 constitutional change ending term limits, Bouteflika had had a health scare in 2005 when he had surgery in Paris for a bleeding stomach ulcer and spent three weeks in Val de Grace. That hospital stay was shrouded in secrecy, the lack of official information fuelling fears his condition may be more serious than admitted. In early 2006, Bouteflika spent a week undergoing post-operative medical exams at the same hospital, which has also treated former French presidents Nicolas Sarkozy and Jacques Chirac. Several months later he disappeared from public view for 50 days, again feeding the rumor mill. Then a year after his surgery, he said he had been “very, very sick” but had “come out absolutely fabulous”, emphasizing that “people need to stop talking about my health.” Yesterday, the daily El Watan reported that although Bouteflika’s mini-stroke “dates officially from 12:30 pm yesterday, some sources have confided that the president suffered the attack about a week ago.” It

said the announcement that he was in hospital “above all confirms what all Algerians suspect-the president is indeed sick and his health is a visible obstacle to his exercising power.” The French-language Le soir d’Algerie was even more blunt in its assessment. “Is Bouteflika still able to fulfil his functions until the end of his current mandate?” it asked. “And even more, is it still conceivable that his mandate will be renewed for a fourth term?” A veteran of Algeria’s war for independence from France, Bouteflika later helped end a decade-long civil war that killed at least 150,000 people, and is credited abroad for restoring stability. But he has been condemned by rights groups and opponents for being authoritarian, despite launching political reforms in April 2011 in the wake of the Arab Spring unrest that toppled other long-standing regional rulers. French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius refused to comment on Bouteflika’s health, saying only he wished a prompt recovery for the man “who, as president of Algeria, is a friend of France.” — AFP

Obama under pressure to take... Continued from Page 1 Graham said international action was needed to bring the conflict to a close but “You don’t need boots on the ground from the US point of view.” More than 70,000 people have died in Syria’s two-year-old civil war. So far, the United States has limited its involvement to providing non-lethal aid to rebels. Obama said on Friday the use of chemical weapons in Syria would be a “game changer” for the United States, but made clear he was in no rush to intervene on the basis of evidence he said was still preliminary. The US fears anti-Assad Islamist rebels affiliated to Al-Qaeda could seize the chemical weapons, and Washington and its allies have discussed scenarios where tens of thousands of ground troops go into Syria if Assad’s government falls. Senator John McCain, the Republican presidential candidate in 2008, said the United States should step up its support for Syrian rebels even if it turns out that Assad’s forces have not used poison gas in the conflict. “We could use Patriot (missile) batteries and cruise missiles,” the Arizona lawmaker, an

influential voice on military issues in the US Senate, told NBC’s Meet The Press. McCain said an “international force” should also be readied to go into Syria to secure stocks of chemical weapons. “There are number of caches of these chemical weapons. They cannot fall into the hands of the jihadists,” he said. At the same time, McCain said it would be a mistake for American ground troops to enter Syria because that “would turn the people against us.” After fighting wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, sending US troops into another conflict would be politically unpalatable in America. The Pentagon is also wary of US involvement in Syria. The president’s top uniformed military adviser, General Martin Dempsey, said last month he could not see a US military option with an “understandable outcome” there. Syria in July acknowledged for the first time that it possessed chemical and biological weapons, saying they could be used if the country faced foreign intervention. However, Syria has denied any use of chemical arms in the civil war and has said it would not use them against its own citizens. — Reuters

Iraq pulls licenses of Al-Jazeera... Continued from Page 1 In a statement posted on its website, the commission blamed the banned stations for the escalation of a sectarian backdrop that is fueling the violence that followed the deadly clashes at the Hawija camp on Tuesday. Iraq’s media commission accused the stations of misleading and exaggerated reports, as well as of airing “clear calls for disorder and for launching retaliatory criminal attacks against security forces.” It also blamed the stations for promoting “banned terrorist organizations who committed crimes against Iraqi people.” The decree states that if the 10 stations try to work on Iraqi territory, they will face legal action from security forces. Signals of their broadcasts, however, remained available to Iraqi viewers yesterday. The decision came as Iraq’s embattled Shiite Prime Minister, Nouri Al-Maliki, made a rare appearance at an official funeral for five soldiers killed by gunmen in Iraq’s Sunni-dominated Anbar province Saturday. Local police in the province said the soldiers were killed in a gunbattle after their vehicle was stopped. The United States Embassy condemned the killing,

and described the soldiers as unarmed. “There is no justification for this crime, and we welcome the calls by local and national leaders in Anbar Province to bring the perpetrators to justice as soon as possible,” it said in a statement Thursday evening. The Embassy last week raised concerns about the clashes in Hawija, without assigning blame for the incident. In its latest statements, it again called for an urgent and transparent investigation. Authorities gave protest organizers a 24-deadline to hand over the gunmen behind the killing or face a “firm response.” No one has been handed over and the deadline passed. Wrapped in Iraqi flags, the five caskets were loaded on military trucks next to flower bouquets, as soldiers held pictures of the deceased and grieved families gathered outside the Defense Ministry building in Baghdad’s heavily fortified Green Zone. “We hope that the chieftains of tribes and key figures in Anbar province who carried out an honorable role and condemned the act will exert their utmost efforts to hand over the killers,” Ministry spokesman General Mohammed AlAskari said. “Certainly we support the peaceful solutions of wise men,” Al-Askari added. — AP

Deportation of expats not... Continued from Page 1 Abdulhadi said that he will file another lawsuit to demand a compensation of KD1 million from the prime minister. It was not known whether the ruling, which is final and cannot be challenged, will open the way for other ex-MPs to file similar lawsuits. The national assembly interior and defense committee yesterday discussed with Defense Minister Sheikh Ahmad AlKhaled Al-Sabah a new draft law for military conscription more than 10 years after the old law was scrapped in 2001.

The minister and his team explained the goals and objectives of the proposed legislation and called on the lawmakers to speed up the approval procedure but MPs said they need time to review the bill which was first submitted by the government in 2009. The legal and legislative committee also approved amendments to the Audit Bureau law to allow the accounting watchdog to refer cases involving suspected corruption directly to the public prosecution for investigation. At present, the bureau reports to the National Assembly which refers such cases to the public prosecution.

REIMS, France: Firemen are at work near the collapsed section of an apartment building yesterday in Reims, eastern France, after a suspected gas explosion killed at least two people and injured nine others leaving people trapped under debris, authorities said. — AFP

2 killed in French building collapse REIMS, France: Two people died and 14 were injured yesterday when part of an apartment block in the French city of Reims collapsed after a suspected gas blast, just three weeks after a similar tragedy not far away. French President Francois Hollande sent his “condolences to the families of the victims” as shocked residents grouped around the scene of the accident in a council estate in the Champagne region. Local authorities said the “probable” cause of the accident-which saw the extremity of a four-storey building containing some 10 flats crash down-was a gas explosion. Pierre Dartout, the top state representative in the Marne department where Reims is located, said two adults were killed and another 14 people were injured, one seriously. Among the

hurt were children, he added. At the beginning of the month, four people from the same family were killed and another person was seriously injured when a gas explosion devastated their council flat in Witry-lesReims, not far from the scene of yesterday’s accident. That incident had shocked the neighborhood, particularly as the father had still been alive when firefighters arrived, talking to them for over two hours to try to help them locate his wife and child, before dying in the ambulance. Yesterday, one council estate resident whose section of the building had not been affected said he heard a huge explosion that shook the walls and broke windows. “When I looked through the window, I saw

that the building had collapsed like a stack of cards, with lots of smoke. I heard people screaming,” said the resident, who would only be cited as Rafik. The building-built in the 1960s and one of the oldest in the area-had been renovated several years ago. “They only re-painted the facade, the interior has not changed since the 1960s. This was bound to happen, it’s too old here,” said one by-stander named Abdelkader. “Judging by the state of the buildings, this doesn’t surprise me. Here when you put a nail in the wall, it crumbles,” said another nearby resident called Raissa. In a statement, Hollande deplored a “terrible tragedy” and expressed his “solidarity to the city of Reims.” — AFP

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

S P ORT S Froome grabs Romandie win

Kubica tests F1 simulator

No. 1 Selby knocked out

LAUSANNE: British rider Chris Froome won the Tour of Romandie on Sunday for his third big win of the season. The 27-year-old Team Sky cyclist - the Olympic time-trial bronze medalist and second in last year’s Tour de France - had 54 seconds to spare over second-placed Slovenian Simon Spilak while Portugal’s Rui Costa filled third spot just as he did last year. Germany’s time-trial specialist Tony Martin displayed his expertise in the discipline by winning yesterday’s final stage in Geneva. Froome, already winner this season of the Tour of Oman and the International Criterium, will hope he goes on and replicates the Tour de France success of the past two winners of this race, Australia’s Cadel Evans in 2011 and the Briton’s compatriot and Sky team-mate Bradley Wiggins last year. Froome, born in South Africa and brought up in Kenya, said it was a good sign for his Tour de France bid but added there was still work to do. “It has been a really good week for us I am really happy with my condition now in the build-up to the Tour de France,” said Froome. “This week I couldn’t have done it without the help of a really strong team around me. “Every day since the prologue, they have protected me and kept me at the front of the race. I owe it to them this week. —AFP

LONDON: Robert Kubica has tried out the Mercedes team’s Formula One simulator in another sign of the Polish driver’s burning desire to return to grand prix racing. “Yes, I was in the Mercedes F1 simulator in the past,” the former Sauber and Renault driver told the website while competing in the Azores round of the European Rally Championship at the weekend. The Pole, fighting back from arm and hand injuries he sustained in a near-fatal rally crash more than two years ago, would not say how many times he drove it nor how many laps he did. Nor would he confirm whether he would be in the simulator again. There was no official comment from Mercedes. Kubica said last month that he would “pay all the money I have to be back in the cockpit of a Formula One car” and suggested that he could already handle certain circuits such as Barcelona. Monaco, with its many twists and turns, would still be too much of a challenge however. A race winner with Sauber in 2008, Kubica last drove in Formula One with Renault in 2010. The 28-year-old did 114 laps of Spain’s Valencia circuit in a DTM (German Touring Car championship) Mercedes in January but opted for a programme of world and European championship rallying over that series. — Reuters

SHEFFIELD: The world’s top-ranked player Mark Selby was knocked out of the world snooker championship 13-10 after a stunning comeback by Barry Hawkins at the Crucible in Sheffield, England on Saturday. Selby was attempting to add the world title to his UK and masters crowns but, having led the last-16 match 97 overnight, saw his opponent dominate the rest of the encounter. “I struggled all the way through the match,” Selby was quoted as saying on the official website ( “Barry played a lot better than me and scored a lot better than me. It is the same old story really, most of this season I have been struggling like that. I have won two majors but I have not really played that well.” Only four players - Steve Davies, Stephen Hendry and Mark Williams - have won the three major titles in the same season. Selby missed the chance to go 10-7 ahead when he missed a relatively simple black and struggled to regain momentum. Australian Open champion and world number 14 Hawkins will meet either Mark King or Ding Junhui in the last eight. “It is my best ever result,” he said. “It feels like I have won the world championship but I have not even made it through the quarter-finals yet.” Ronnie O’Sullivan leads Ali Carter, who he beat in last year’s final, 5-3 with eight frames scheduled for late yesterday. — Reuters

Orioles pound Athletics

Adam addressing the crowd at the event.

First-of-its-kind US basketball camp launched for youth in Kuwait KUWAIT: Under the Patronage of the Ministry of State for Youth Affairs and in the presence of HE Abdul Aziz Al Hoop, Advisor to the Higher Council, Ministry of Information, Mountain Basketball Camp Kuwait, the country’s first US basketball camp for youth was launched in the presence of Advisor to the Higher

Adam training youths at the event.

Council at the Ministry of Information, Abdul Aziz Al-Duaij, Matthew Tueller, US Ambassador to Kuwait and more than 350 guests at the late Musaad Al-Saleh gymnasium at the Al Bayan Bilingual School. The event was hosted and run by former NBA player and coach, Adam Harrington who previously played for the Dallas Mavericks and Denver Nuggets and also featured the founder of Hoop Mountain Inc. USA Steven Gibbs and Kyle

Casey, a top college basketball player from the United States. During his opening speech, Adam Harrington said: “I am proud to be part of the Hoop Mountain Kuwait team and I definitely believe that the strong interest levels shown by youth in Kuwait will lead to more local players at the international front in the basketball arena. Through our basketball camps, we believe that we are providing the youth in Kuwait with coaching and skills development that is on-par to the standards in the United States”. The launch event also featured a basketball skills training with select youth and Adam Harrington, followed by a dunk showcase by Harrington. Also present at the event were Hoop Mountain Kuwait’s strategic partners Kuwait Diabetes Society who provided free blood glucose tests for guests at the event. The partnership is aimed at promoting awareness for diabetes in Kuwait and a healthy lifestyle through organized sports. Musaed Al Saleh, the founder of Hoop Mountain Basketball Camp Kuwait expressed the strong potential Hoop Mountain provides for Kuwait, for both Kuwaitis and non-Kuwaitis. “These camps will not only improve the basketball skills of the youth, but will also encourage our youth to learn teamwork, leadership and sportsmanship and most importantly, live a healthy life. It will serve as a solid foundation in character-building for the future, which is important to further develop our youth here in Kuwait,” he said. Hoop Mountain Basketball Camp Kuwait will be providing basketball camps with superior American coaches for boys ranging from the ages of five onwards and camps for girls from the ages of five to 12.

OAKLAND: Nick Markakis and Adam Jones hit back-to-back home runs in the fourth inning, Chris Tillman pitched six innings for his first win of the season and the Baltimore Orioles beat the Oakland Athletics 7-3 on Saturday. Nate McLouth also homered for Baltimore, which is 3-0 on its 11-game road trip and in position for its first four-game sweep in Oakland since 1987. Tillman (1-1) scattered seven hits with seven strikeouts and two walks. He also had to bat in the seventh inning after an injury to catcher Taylor Teagarden forced the Orioles to abandon their DH. He struck out. Josh Donaldson matched his career high with four hits and two RBIs. The A’s have lost four straight and eight of nine. Oakland starter AJ Griffin (2-2) allowed only five hits in seven innings but gave up two home runs for the second straight start. YANKEES 5, BLUE JAYS 4 In New York, Travis Hafner hit a three-run homer, then lumbered around the bases for a go-ahead triple in the seventh inning that sent CC Sabathia and the Yankees over the Blue Jays. Vernon Wells delivered another key hit against his former team as the Yankees beat Toronto for the third straight day. With Mariano Rivera getting a day off to rest, Joba Chamberlain worked around a pair of one-out singles in the ninth for his first save since 2010. Jose Bautista and Brett Lawrie homered for the Blue Jays, who dropped to 1-5 on their seven-game road trip. Esmil Rodgers (1-2) was the loser. Sabathia (4-2) allowed three earned runs and nine hits in eight innings. He walked none, struck out four and improved to 14-4 overall against Toronto. TWINS 7, RANGERS 2 In Minneapolis, Pedro Hernandez pitched five shutout innings for his first major league win, Josh Willingham homered and the Twins beat the Rangers to end a three-game slide. Anthony Swarzak, Brian Duensing and Jared Burton each work a scoreless inning before Glen Perkins struggled in the ninth, giving up a tworun double to Mitch Moreland. Derek Holland (1-2) gave up five hits and four runs - three earned in seven innings for Texas, which lost for just the second time in nine games. Hernandez (1-0) was making just his second start - and fourth appearance - for the Twins. His first start was April 7. He allowed just five hits and struck out three. After getting into a third-inning jam, Hernandez retired eight of the final nine hitters he faced. RAYS 10, WHITE SOX 4 In Chicago, Matt Moore became the first Tampa Bay pitcher to win five games in April as the Rays snapped a two-game losing streak with a victory over the White Sox. The left-hander joined Boston’s Clay Buchholz as the only five-game winners this month. He allowed just three hits, one earned run and matched a season high nine strikeouts in six

OAKLAND: Josh Donaldson No. 20 of the Oakland Athletics is tagged out at second base by JJ Hardy No. 2 of the Baltimore Orioles after a pick off play during the sixth inning. —AFP innings of work. Moore’s 1.13 ERA is second-lowest in the majors behind St. Louis right hander Jake Westbrook (0.98). Gavin Floyd (0-4) left the game with two outs in the third with a flexor muscle strain in his right elbow. He threw just 47 pitches, gave up two hits and two earned runs.

Angels added an unearned run. Hernandez won at home for the first time this season.

RED SOX 8, ASTROS 4 In Boston, David Ortiz had two hits and three RBIs to extend his torrid start after a long layoff, and Felix Doubront overcame a wild first inning to pitch into the seventh as the Red Sox beat the struggling Astros. It was 14th win in 19 games for the surging Red Sox (17-7). Boston can tie a club record for the most wins in April by completing a four-game sweep over Houston (7-17) on Sunday. Boston matched its best start since 2002 with its fourth straight win. Ortiz is hitting .519 (14 of 27) with two homers and nine RBIs since getting back into the lineup last Saturday. He missed the 71 of the final 72 games last season and all of spring training with a heel injury. The Red Sox went 18-8 in April 1998 and 2003.

ROYALS 3, INDAINS 2 In Kansas City, Ervin Santana pitched seven scoreless innings, Salvador Perez hit a two-run homer and the Royals held on to beat the Indians. Santana (3-1), who was acquired in an Oct. 31 trade with Anaheim for minor-league pitcher Brandon Sisk, allowed six singles, struck out five and walked none. Greg Holland, who logged his sixth save in seven opportunities, gave up two unearned runs in the ninth on a Michael Brantley two-out triple, which scored Mark Reynolds, who had an infield single, and Lonnie Chisenhall, who reached on Eric Hosmer’s error. Holland struck out Jason Kipnis to end the game. The Indians have scored three runs or less in eight of their past 10 games and 13 times this season, going 3-10 in those games. Scott Kazmir (0-1), who was making his second big league start in two years, was charged the loss.

MARINERS 3, ANGELS 2 In Seattle, Kendry Morales snapped a 2-all tie with a pinch-hit RBI single in the seventh inning, Felix Hernandez allowed just one earned run and five hits over eight innings, and the Mariners beat the Angels. The Mariners were 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position and suffering through another miserable night without clutch hitting before Morales’ line-drive single off reliever Michael Roth that scored Kyle Seager with the go-ahead run. Jesus Montero hit a tworun homer in the sixth inning for Seattle to pull the Mariners even. That was all Hernandez (3-2) needed. He stumbled only in the third inning when Chris Iannetta led off with a solo homer and the

INTERLEAGUE TIGERS 7, BRAVES 4 In Detroit, Omar Infante and Jhonny Peralta both hit two-run homers, and Rick Porcello bounced back from a nightmarish start last weekend to pitch into the seventh inning, helping the Tigers to a win over the Braves. Infante’s homer off Kris Medlen (1-3) broke a 3-all tie in the fourth. Porcello (1-2) allowed three runs in 6 1-3 innings. He didn’t make it through the first last Saturday at Los Angeles, when he gave up nine runs to the Angels. Atlanta’s Justin Upton hit his major leagueleading 12th homer in the eighth, but Infante doubled home a run in the bottom half and scored to make it 7-4. — AP

Nationals roll over Reds WASHINGTON: Bryce Harper homered and singled, Dan Haren had his best start of the young season Saturday and the Washington Nationals beat the Cincinnati Reds 6-3. Denard Span and Jayson Werth each had two hits for Washington, which has won the first three games of the four-game set. Haren (2-3) didn’t quite match Jordan Zimmermann’s one-hitter and Gio Gonzalez’s impressive eight innings of one-hit ball the previous two games, but he was sharp enough. Haren allowed two runs and six hits over six innings, lowering his ERA from 7.36 to 6.29. Rafael Soriano pitched a scoreless ninth for his seventh save. Brandon Phillips had three singles and Shin-Soo Choo homered for Cincinnati, which has lost four of five. KUWAIT: Internationally ranked Yousuf Al-Abdelrazaq, won first place in the open sitting category for professionals during the second round race, of Kuwait jet-ski championship, which is being organized by Marine Sports Committee. Meanwhile Abdelrahman Ghazi Al-Omar from Bader Al-Bader lawyers office and pro rider won first place in the stock category for juniors. New champion from Tantium team won first place for the standing open category. Photo shows Maj Gen Al-Ehad, AlFoudary, Failakawi, Al-Omar and champions of the second round.

Toulon in Heineken final LONDON: Former England hero Jonny Wilkinson returned to Twickenham to kick his French club Toulon to a 24-12 victory over Saracens yesterday and set up an all-French Heineken Cup final against Clermont Auvergne. Wilkinson, who kicked all Toulon’s points in their 21-15 quarter-final victory over Leicester, was again faultless as he landed seven penalties and a drop goal as the big-name, multi-national side reached the final for the first time in their second Heineken campaign.

In a game desperately short on running rugby - and atmosphere with only 25,584 fans inside the 80,000-capacity stadium - Wilkinson punished the English side who gave away a series of frustrating penalties and wasted the few chances they did create with some wild passes. Owen Farrell, the man who now wears Wilkinson’s England number 10 shirt, kept Saracens in touch with three early penalties as they trailed 12-9 at the break but was eventually given a lesson by the master, who turns 34 next month. — Reuters

PHILLIES 9, METS 4 In New York, Domonic Brown and John Mayberry Jr. hit consecutive home runs to break open a close game and the Phillies beat the Mets, sending Jonathan Pettibone to his first major league win. Ryan Howard knocked in two runs, Jimmy Rollins scored twice and Michael Young had three hits - two that never left the infield - for the second straight day. Pettibone (1-0) pitched his way out of an important jam to help Philadelphia improve to 4-1 against the Mets after losing the season series last year. Shaun Marcum (0-1) went four innings in his Mets debut after beginning the season on the disabled list with a neck injury and right biceps tendinitis. John Buck hit his eighth homer in the ninth, way too late to prevent New York from dropping to 3-5 on a nine-game homestand with its third straight defeat. PIRATES 5, CARDINALS 3 St. Louis, Russell Martin hit a two-run home run to highlight a four-run seventh inning and

the Pirates rallied to beat the Cardinals. The comeback gave AJ Burnett (2-2) his second victory over St. Louis in 10 days. He gave up two runs and five hits in six innings. His six strikeouts expanded his team record for month of April to a league-leading 48. Burnett threw seven shutout innings in a 5-0 win over St. Louis on April 17. St. Louis starter Jake Westbrook left after six innings with a 2-0 lead in search of his 100th career victory. He struck out six and scattered six hits to lower his ERA to 0.98 in four starts. The Pirates had three consecutive hits against Joe Kelly (0-1) to lead off the seventh and were aided by a hit by pitch and a walk to score four runs. CUBS 3, MARLINS 2 In Miami, David DeJesus hit a tiebreaking single in the seventh inning to help lift the Cubs to a win over the struggling Marlins. Travis Wood (2-1) pitched six innings allowing two runs and struck out five for Chicago, which has won four of five. Three relievers held the lead to get to Kevin Gregg, who pitched a perfect ninth for his third save. Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton hit his first home run of the season, an estimated 472-foot drive over the left-field scoreboard. Miguel Olivo also homered for Miami, which dropped to 5-19, the worst record in baseball. BREWERS 6, DODGERS 4 In Los Angeles, Carlos Gomez and Martin Maldonado each hit two-run home runs to propel the Brewers to a victory over the Dodgers. Gomez’s homer off reliever Matt Guerrier in the seventh inning erased a 3-2 deficit and Maldonado added his blast an inning later, also off Guerrier, to give the Brewers the cushion they needed. The comeback overshadowed the major league debut of Dodgers starter Matt Magill. Magill pitched 6 2-3 innings, striking out seven

while retiring 12 of the last 13 batters he faced. Paco Rodriguez replaced Magill and gave up an infield single to Norichika Aoki. Guerrier (1-1) replaced Rodriguez and gave up Gomez’s shot to left field. The Brewers’ Wily Peralta (2-1) gave up three earned runs on six hits over 6 innings with one walk and two strikeouts. DIAMONDBACKS 3, ROCKIES 2 In Phoenix, Cody Ross’ sacrifice fly to center field drove in A.J. Pollock with the winning run in the bottom of the 10th inning, lifting the Diamondbacks over the Rockies. Pollock led off the inning with a single off Edgmer Escalona (1-1). With one out, he stole second base and went to third on a throwing error by Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario. The Rockies then intentionally walked Miguel Montero to have Escalona face Ross. Ross hit a ball more than 400 feet to center that gave the Rockies had no chance to throw out the speedy Pollock. Arizona won its sixth extra-inning game without a defeat this season. Closer JJ Putz (2-0) earned the win with a scoreless top of the 10th. PADRES 8, GIANTS 7 In San Diego, Yonder Alonso scored the winning run when San Francisco second baseman Marco Scutaro couldn’t come up with Nick Hundley’s grounder, lifting the Padres to a victory over the Giants. Alonso reached base with his third double of the game, went to third on Jedd Gyorko’s single and scored on Scutaro’s miscue. The loss is the Giants’ fourth straight, and their third extra-inning defeat in four games. Sergio Romo (1-2) took the loss. Joe Thatcher (1-0) pitched the 12th inning giving up two hits for the win. San Diego trailed 5-0 before rallying for six runs in the fourth inning. Alonso and Chris Denorfia each had two-run doubles. — AP

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Red Wings blank Stars DALLAS: The Detroit Red Wings are headed to the playoffs for the 22nd straight season after Henrik Zetterberg had two goals and an assist in a 3-0 victory over the Dallas Stars on Saturday night. Jimmy Howard made 17 saves to post his fifth shutout of the season as Detroit secured the seventh spot in the Western Conference. It’s the lowest playoff seed for the Red Wings since the NHL moved to the 1 vs. 8 conference format in 1993. Jonathan Ericsson also scored and Pavel Datsyuk had three assists for the Red Wings, who own the longest active playoff streak in major professional sports, six years longer than the NBA’s San Antonio Spurs’ stretch of postseason play. Detroit closed out the regular season with four consecutive wins by a combined score of 15-3. It will face second-seeded Anaheim in the first round of the playoffs. Richard Bachman made 34 saves for Dallas, which dropped its fifth consecutive game.

CHICAGO: Joakim Noah No. 13 of the Chicago Bulls passes around Brook Lopez No. 11 of the Brooklyn Nets in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2013 NBA Playoffs at the United Center. — AFP

Bulls defeat Nets in triple OT to go up 3-1 CHICAGO: Chicago’s Nate Robinson dragged his team back from a 14-point deficit late in regulation time and the Bulls went on to beat the Brooklyn Nets 142-134 in triple overtime on Saturday, taking a 3-1 lead in their NBA firstround playoff series. The Bulls were trailing 109-95 with less than 4 minutes to go in the fourth quarter when Robinson took over, carrying the hosts to a thrilling victory. In other games, Oklahoma City also moved within one win of a series victory by holding off hard-finishing Houston, Memphis squared its series against the Los Angeles Clippers at 2-2, and Atlanta sharply turned around its fortunes with a comfortable win over Indiana, cutting the series deficit to 2-1. Robinson finished with 34 points, scoring all but five of them after the third quarter, including the first 12 in a 14-0 run that wiped out the deficit. “I always think I’m on fire, kind of like the old school game NBA Jam,” he said. “You make a couple in a row, the rim’s on fire. You shoot the ball, the ball’s on fire. “Whenever I’m in the game, I just play with a lot of confidence. You kind of have to lie to yourself and feel like you can’t miss.” Robinson scored with two seconds left in the first overtime and that looked enough to secure the win, but Joe Johnson replied for Brooklyn to send it into a second overtime, tied 121-121. The Bulls had a chance to win in the closing seconds of the next extra session, but Joakim Noah was blocked, and the game went to a third overtime. The Nets were still within three points with three minutes left before Luol Deng’s basket made it a five-point lead and Nazr Mohammed came up with two baskets in the final 32 seconds to help preserve the win. Brooklyn’s Deron Williams said the Nets had themselves to blame for not securing a win that would have squared the series. “We made a lot of mistakes up 14,” Williams said. “We had the missed dunk. Missed free throws. I fouled Nate on the 3. We made a lot of mistakes in the fourth quarter.” The Bulls will try to wrap up the best-of-seven series at Brooklyn today. Oklahoma City pulled out a victory in its first game since losing All-Star Russell Westbrook to a season-ending injury, beating the Houston Rockets 104-101 to go up 3-0 in the series. Kevin Durant scored 41 points, including 27

in the first half, and the Thunder led by 26 points before a big third-quarter rally by the Rockets put them within striking distance. Houston regained the lead with about 4 minutes left, and was up with less than a minute remaining. But Durant hit a 3-pointer a few seconds later to put Oklahoma City on top 100-99. A turnover by James Harden gave the Thunder the ball back and Derek Fisher made two free throws to push the lead to 3. Harden made a layup, but Reggie Jackson hit two more free throws after that. Houston had a last chance, but Carlos Delfino’s 3-pointer attempt fell short. Harden scored 30 points to lead the Rockets in the first playoff game in Houston since 2009. Game 4 is today in Houston. Memphis’ Marc Gasol had 24 points and 13 rebounds as the Grizzlies cruised to a 104-83 win over the L.A. Clippers to square their series. Zach Randolph finished with 24 points and nine rebounds as the Grizzlies won their second straight to ensure the series will return to Memphis for Game 6. Mike Conley had 15 points and 13 assists, and Tayshaun Prince scored 15 in his best game of the series. Chris Paul and Blake Griffin had 19 points apiece for the Clippers, and Griffin also grabbed 10 rebounds. Los Angeles’ reserves outscored its counterparts again, 43-16, but DeAndre Jordan was the only other starter besides Paul and Griffin to even score, and he only contributed two points. Chauncey Billups and Caron Butler went a combined 0 for 10 from the floor in being shut out. Game 5 is tomorrow in Los Angeles. Atlanta’s Al Horford had 26 points and 16 rebounds as the Hawks had a comfortable 90-69 win over Indiana, changing the momentum of the series after the Pacers had easily won the first two. Playing with much more urgency than they did in two double-digit losses at Indianapolis, the Hawks raced to a 54-30 halftime lead and narrowed the best-of-seven series to 2-1. Game 4 on Monday is also in Atlanta, where the Hawks have now won 12 straight over the Pacers dating to 2006. The Hawks changed up their lineup, inserting 7-footer Johan Petro at center and bringing 3point specialist Kyle Korver off the bench. With more favorable matchups and a lot more energy, Atlanta suddenly made a series of it. —AP

Bangladesh closes in on victory in 2nd Test HARARE: Bangladesh is set for a final-day victory in the second test after setting Zimbabwe 401 to win and reducing the host to 138-4 by stumps on the fourth day yesterday. Although the Zimbabwe batsmen were given slight relief when umpires took the players off early for bad light at Harare Sports Club, Bangladesh is still well-placed to level the twotest series between cricket’s lowest-ranked teams. Captain Mushfiqur Rahim’s 93 and halfcenturies by Shakib Al Hasan and Nasir Hossain led Bangladesh to 291-9 declared in its second innings earlier in the day, a formidable lead of exactly 400. Hamilton Masakadza was 46 not out at the early close, but Zimbabwe had sent in nightwatchman Shingirai Masakadza and needs to bat all of Monday with six wickets in hand to win a multi-game series for the first time since its victory over Bangladesh in 2004. More likely is a series-leveling Bangladesh

win and the first time the country has avoided defeat in a series in four years, ending a run of nine straight series defeats. Bangladesh would deserve its victory having rebounded strongly from a heavy loss in the first Test to dominate the second from the start. Yesterday, wicketkeeper-batsman Rahim led from the front to build the significant lead lead, hitting nine fours and only missing out on a third test century by seven runs when part-time seamer Hamilton Masakadza forced him to flash a catch to Vusi Sibanda at backward point. Rahim shared partnerships of 84 with Shakib (59) and 84 again with Hossain, who was 67 not out when Bangladesh declared. Shingirai Masakadza was Zimbabwe’s best bowler with 4-58 and his brother Hamilton picked up 3-24, but the home team’s attack was badly hampered by the loss to injury of Keegan Meth, who was unable to bowl at all in Bangladesh’s second innings. —AP

WILD 3, AVALANCHE 1 In Denver, Devin Setoguchi broke a second-period tie and Niklas Backstrom stopped 29 shots, helping Minnesota secure its first playoff spot in five years with a win over Colorado. Zach Parise scored and Pierre-Marc Bouchard added a late empty-net goal for the Wild, who earned the No. 8 seed and will face top-seeded Chicago in the first round of the postseason. Minnesota had a chance to wrap up a spot on Friday, but lost 6-1 at home to Edmonton. Backstrom came up big in the third period, turning aside 15 shots. He improved to 24-5-3 against the Avalanche. Ryan O’Reilly had the lone goal for Colorado, which finished in last place in the Western Conference.

RANGERS 4, DEVILS 0 In New York, the New York Rangers started the day eighth in the Eastern Conference. They finished it two spots higher and locked into a first-round playoff matchup with the Washington Capitals. In their final regular-season game, the Rangers beat New Jersey and jumped over the Ottawa Senators and the New York Islanders into sixth place. When Ottawa was beaten by Philadelphia on Saturday night, the Rangers knew they were there to stay. Henrik Lundqvist made that possible as he stopped 20 shots and coasted to his second shutout of the season. Rick Nash scored two goals. Derek Stepan and Ryan Callahan both had a goal and assist in the first period against New Jersey backup goalie Johan Hedberg, who gave Martin Brodeur a rare game off. CAPITALS 3, BRUINS 2 In Washington, Eric Fehr scored on a power play 3:23 into overtime, and Washington, with nothing at stake, came back for a victory over Boston, which is trying to win the Northeast Division. Boston entered the day tied with the Montreal Canadiens, who beat Toronto 4-1 to grab the division lead. The Bruins need to beat Ottawa on Sunday night to take the title. The NHL regular season originally was supposed to end Saturday, but the game between Bruins and Senators was rescheduled because of the Boston Marathon bombings. Milan Lucic and Andrew Ference to put Boston ahead 2-0 before Washington captain Alex Ovechkin assisted on Mike Green’s two power-play scores within less than two minutes in the third period. Ovechkin didn’t get a goal himself, leaving his league-leading total at 32. BLUES 3, BLACKHAWKS 1 In St. Louis, Brian Elliott made 22 saves and Jaden Schwartz had his first two-goal game and St. Louis

Bangladesh second innings (163 for five overnight) Tamim Iqbal c Mutumbami b S Masakadza 7 Jahurul Islam c Mutumbami b S Masakadza 2 Mohammad Ashraful lbw Jarvis 4 Mominul c H Masakadza b S Masakadza 29

59 93 67 0 11 4 4 11 291

Fall of wickets: 1-7 2-12 3-18 4-65 5-149 6-233 7234 8-255 9-279 Bowling: K Jarvis 22-3-80-1 (nb2), S Masakadza 24-5-58-4 (nb2), G Cremer 17-1-70-1, E Chigumbura 14-0-54-0 (w1), H Masakadza 11-124-3 (w1) Zimbabwe first innings 282 (E Chigumbura 86; Robiul Islam 5-85, Sohag Gazi 4-59) Bangladesh first innings 391 (Shakib Al Hasan 81, Nasir Hossain 77, Mushfiqur Rahman 60; E Chigumbura 3-75) Zimbabwe lead series 1-0

PENGUINS 8, HURRICANES 3 In Pittsburgh, James Neal scored three goals in his first game back from a concussion and Pittsburgh snapped a two-game skid with a victory over Jordan Staal and Carolina. Evgeni Malkin had a goal and two assists for the Penguins, who had three third-period goals in 5:24 to turn a tie game into a rout. Brenden Morrow and former Hurricane Jussi Jokinen - both acquired at the trade deadline - also scored. Kevin Westgarth scored his first two goals of the season, and Tuomo Ruutu also scored for the Hurricanes, who will miss the playoffs for the fourth straight time. FLYERS 2, SENATORS 1 In Ottawa, Jakub Voracek scored the winner, Steve Mason made 43 saves and Philadelphia closed out the season with a win over Ottawa. Jason Akeson also

EDMONTON: Oilers’ Taylor Hall (4) flies through the air while keeping his eye on the puck against the Vancouver Canucks during the first period of an NHL hockey game. — AP Brad Richardson had two assists for the Kings, who played without suspended captain Dustin Brown. Antti Niemi stopped 24 shots for the Sharks, who kept it close on Galiardi’s goal with 2:26 to play. OILERS 7, CANUCKS 2 In Edmonton, Nail Yakupov scored his first career hat trick and Edmonton closed out its season with a win over Vancouver. The Russian rookie scored all three of his goals in a high-flying third period for Edmonton, which scored five goals in a span of 3:35. Justin Schultz had a goal and three assists, Jordan Eberle two goals and Jerred Smithson got the another goal for the Oilers, who won their last two games of the season but only three of their last 12. Derek Roy and Tom Sestito scored for the Canucks, who rested several of their key players in advance of the playoffs. The Canucks will play the San Jose Sharks in the first of the playoffs. The Canucks lost two in a row to finish the regular season and four of their last six. PANTHERS 5, LIGHTNING 3 In Tampa, Martin St. Louis had a goal and an assist for the Lightning to win the league scoring title in Tampa Bay’s loss to Florida in the season finale for two non-playoff teams. The 37-year old St. Louis finished the year with 60 points, making him the oldest player in league history to win the Art Ross Trophy. Tomas Fleischmann scored his second goal of the game to give Florida a 4-3 lead at 13:53 of the third. Rookie Jonathan Huberdeau had three assists, while Marcel Goc added an empty net goal in the final minute of play.

scored for the Flyers, who failed to advance to the postseason for just the ninth time in franchise history. Kyle Turris scored for the Senators and Craig Anderson stopped 23 shots. The loss leaves the Senators sitting eighth in the Eastern Conference. They can finish seventh if they pick up a point against the Boston Bruins in the season finale late yesterday. CANADIENS 4, MAPLE LEAFS 1

In Toronto, Lars Eller had a goal and two assists and Montreal sent Toronto a pre-playoff message, defeating the sluggish Maple Leafs. The Canadiens did it without No. 1 goalie Carey Price, who was given the night off in favor of Peter Budaj. Rubbing salt into the wound, Montreal chased Toronto starter James Reimer early in the third period. Toronto and Montreal could meet in the playoffs depending on the outcome of the makeup game Sunday between the Senators and Bruins in Boston. COYOTES 5, DUCKS 3 In Anaheim, Radim Vrbata had three goals, capping his hat trick with a short-handed score, and Jason LaBarbera made 22 of his 43 saves in the third period to lead Phoenix over playoff-bound Anaheim. The Coyotes finished 21-18-9, four points out of a playoff spot after winning their first division title in franchise history and going to the Western conference finals last season. Teemu Selanne, Bobby Ryan and defensemen Francois Beauchemin scored for the Ducks. As the second seed in the West, Anaheim will meet seventh-seeded Detroit in the opening round of the playoffs. — AP

KOTC shooting tourney concludes By Abdellatif Sharaa KUWAIT: Kuwait Oil Tankers Company Shooting Tournament concluded on Saturday at Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Olympic Shooting Complex in the presence of President of Kuwait and Asian Shooting

A group photo with winning female shooters.

Scoreboard after the fourth day of the second and final test between Zimbabwe and Bangladesh at the Harare Sports Club yesterday: Shakib c Mutumbami b H Masakadza Mushfiqur c Sibanda b H Masakadza Nasir Hossain not out Ziaur Rahman st Mutumbami b Cremer Sohag Gazi c Sibanda b H Masakadza Sajidul Islam c Mutumbami b S Masakadza Robiul Islam not out Extras (lb-5, w-2, nb-4) Total (for nine wickets declared, 88 overs)

KINGS 3, SHARKS 2 In Los Angeles, Justin Williams scored in the third period, Jonathan Quick made 23 saves, and Los Angeles finished in fifth place in the Western Conference with a victory over San Jose. Slava Voynov and Kyle Clifford also scored for the reigning Stanley Cup champions, who entered the regular-season finale in a fifth-place tie with the Sharks. The Kings will begin their title defense at fourthseeded St. Louis, which sneaked past Los Angeles and San Jose in the last week. T.J. Galiardi and Logan Couture scored for the Sharks, who will begin their ninth consecutive playoff appearance at third-seeded Vancouver after losing three of their final four.

St. Louis assisted on Matt Carle’s goal 5 minutes into the first period that made it 1-0, and scored from in-close to put Tampa Bay up 3-2 at 5:47 of the second. The right wing, with 912 points, moved past Gary Roberts in 95th place on the career list. Bobby Orr is 94th with 915 points. Steven Stamkos got the second assist on St. Louis’ goal, giving him 57 points. Tampa Bay also got a goal from Ryan Malone.

BLUE JACKETS 3, PREDATORS 1 In Columbus, Jack Johnson scored the go-ahead goal with 4:48 left and Columbus capped a remarkable turnaround with a victory over Nashville. But despite that win, Columbus was eliminated from the playoff race when the Minnesota Wild beat the Colorado Avalanche later on Saturday to earn the final postseason spot in the Western Conference. Coming into the night, the Blue Jackets were tied for eighth in the West with Minnesota, each with 53 points. Detroit beat Dallas on Saturday and clinched the No. 7 seed. The Red Wings will play Anaheim in the first round. The Blue Jackets were on the short end of tiebreakers against both the Wild and Red Wings. Brandon Dubinsky tied it early in the period and Cam Atkinson added an empty-netter.

SCOREBOARD Zimbabwe second innings V Sibanda c Sohag Gazi b Shakib Al Hasan 32 22 R Chakabva b Shakib Al Hasan H Masakadza not out 46 B Taylor lbw Ziaur Rahman 10 M Waller b Ziaur Rahman 15 S Masakadza not out 7 Extras (lb-5, nb-1) 6 Total (for four wickets, 43.4 overs) 138 Fall of wickets: 1-36 2-66 3-96 4-118 To bat: R Mutumbami, E Chigumbura, G Cremer, K Meth, K Jarvis Bowling: Robiul Islam 8.4-2-24-0 (nb1), Sajidul Islam 2-1-5-0, Shakib Al Hasan 9-0-45-2, Sohag Gazi 12-5-23-0, Ziaur Rahman 12-4-36-2

earned home-ice advantage for the first round of the playoffs by defeating Chicago. The Blues won 12 of their last 15 games to capture fourth place in the Western Conference. St. Louis will face Los Angeles in the first round of the playoffs. Elliott and the Blues were helped by facing a Chicago lineup that was without many regular players. Ben Smith, who was playing in his first game of the season, scored for Chicago. The two-goal game was the first of Schwartz’s career. Patrik Berglund also scored for St. Louis and David Backes had two assists to give him 300 points for his career.

Abdelaziz Busheri receives the archery winner’s cup.

Federations, KOTC Chairman of the Board and Managing Director Bader Nasser Al-Khashti, President of the Arab Shooting Federation, Vicepresident of Kuwait Shooting Federation Engineer Duaij Al-Otaibi and board members. Secretary General of Arab and Kuwait Shooting Federations Obeid Al-Osaimi thanked KOTC for its support of national team members, and lauded the role the company plays during the organization of major tournaments in Kuwait out of its belief in the importance of supporting youth for their role in pushing the wheel of development and construction, so they are always keen on encouraging shoot-

ers to make more achievements in the name of Kuwait in this field. Al-Osaimi lauded the large number of participating shooters in the air rifle, pistol and archery. Engr Duaij Khalaf Al-Otaibi presented a memento to KOTC Chairman and Managing Director Bader AlKhashti, who said the company supports the shooting club since its establishment and continues to do so until now. He said the sport of shooting is a noble discipline encouraged by our forefathers, and that is why the company will continue supporting the shooting club, which brought us great results locally, regionally and internationally.

Results of KOTC shooting tournament Air pistol - men: Hamad Abdallah - first Suhail Jassim - second Hassan Al-Mulla - third Air rifle - men: Ali Farhan Al-Mutairi - first Mohammad Adel Abdelrahman - second Khalid Al-Subaie - third Air pistol - women:

Iman Bouland - first Huthama Al-Baghli - second Israa Dashti - third Air rifle women: Mariam Erzouqi - first Zahraa Al-Saffar - second Heba Erzouqi - third 50m rifle 3 positions - men Misal Al-Tahous - first Khalid Al-Subaie - second

Abdallah Al-Harby - third 50m pistol - men: Hamad Abdallah - first Zaid Al-Thafiri - second Mohammad Adel - third 25m pistol - women: Iman Bouland - first Huthman Al-Baghli - second Israa Bahman - third Air rifle - juniors:

Ali Al-Mutairi - first Mohammad Abdelrahman second Bander Al-Mutairi - third Air rifle junior - women Heba Erzouqi - first Zahraa Al-Saffar - second Shaimaa Shaker - third Air pistol juniors - men Mousa Abdallah - first

Khalifa Al-Thafiri - second Sami Wasmi - third Air pistol juniors - women Sheikha Al-Obaidly - first Dana Ali - second Olympic Archery - men Abdelaziz Bushehri - first Ahmad Al-Tamimi - second Mohammad Al-Musallam third

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Mayweather bloodied but unbowed for fight LAS VEGAS: Floyd Mayweather Jr. was bleeding from the nose, something that seemed to bother his father far more than it did him. A forearm that slipped inside the headgear during a sparring session Friday night was the culprit and Mayweather Sr. - back as the boxer’s trainer once more - let the sparring partner know he wasn’t happy about it. “It’s OK, it’s boxing,” Mayweather yelled back at his father from the center of the ring. “But you got a fight next week,” his father protested. The nose got some attention from the cut man, but the sparring session went on. By the final round, Mayweather was landing some big right hand leads; enjoying himself so much that he asked for - and got - an extra three minutes in the ring. His father wasn’t going to deny him that, which wasn’t surprising. In a camp populated by yes men, no one dares to say no to the champ. He’s back in charge of his mini kingdom, doing what he enjoys best, getting ready for a fight. Next Saturday night he’ll enter the ring for the 44th time in his long career, and the oddsmakers in this gambling city are betting that he’ll finish the night with his 44th win. “Always happy to go out there and do what I love,” Mayweather said. “It’s always good to face a new challenge, another obstacle.” Just how much of an obstacle Robert Guerrero will be remains to be seen. He may be what the sharp guys here call a dog, but he’s a live dog. Coming off a dominating win over Andrew Berto and unbeaten in eight years, Guerrero represents enough of a threat to Mayweather to make it at least look like an interesting fight to those contemplating buying it on pay-per-view. Those are the people Mayweather loves, the people who have made him incredibly rich. They buy Mayweather fights either because they love him or hate him, but buy them they do. He hasn’t fought in a year, partly because he doesn’t fight a lot to begin with and partly because he spent more than two months of the last year confined to a jail cell. Mayweather served 70 days in the Clark County Detention Center for assaulting the mother of his children, an experience that seems to have sobered him, if just a bit. “It can be rough on you,” he said, icing his hands in the dressing room of the Mayweather Boxing Gym just west of the Las Vegas Strip. “You just got to say prayers and read the positive letters and know you’re going home some day. That’s the main thing - I knew I was going home.” The jail sentence was hanging over his head the last time he was in the ring, but it didn’t matter. He engaged in a brawl with Miguel Cotto, winning fairly easily but paying the price by getting caught with more shots than he ever took in the earlier part of his career. He’s a master defensive fighter who has been opening up in more recent fights, either

because he’s slowing down or to improve his marketability. Mayweather understands better than most that defense doesn’t sell, perhaps even more so now that he signed what could be a six-fight deal with Showtime that will cement his place as the most well paid athlete in the world. “That’s what it’s all about, going out there and performing and making it exciting,” Mayweather told me. “I want people to come out and cheer and have fun and live life.” However anyone feels about Mayweather, his fights are events. Manny Pacquiao is in decline now, but even in his prime Mayweather was a bigger attraction, as he is always quick to point out. His fights on Mexican holiday weekends in Las Vegas are such a staple that the MGM Grand hotel already has him penciled in for the next one in September. He’ll make another $40 million or so for this one, which will be for a piece of the 147 pound title. The titles are a nice adornment, but Mayweather keeps score by the amount of money he makes - and he expects to make a lot of it for his latest night at the office. The story line was supposed to be good guy against bad, but Guerrero ruined that after getting arrested for trying to bring a gun on a flight at JFK in New York. Still, Mayweather is pleased with what Guerrero is bringing to the promotion, even if he’s not so sure what he will bring in the ring. “He talks a good game so now we’ll just have to see if he can fight the same way he talks,” Mayweather said. “He’s doing a hell of a job with helping promote the fight, though.” On this evening at the Mayweather gym, the fighter keeps a close eye on the 100 or so people gathered to watch him spar in the sweltering gym. They are family and friends, and his hulking bodyguards only let in those that their boss personally approves. The Bentley is parked sideways out front, just so there’s no mistaking whose care it is. Inside the gym, Mayweather does his usual lengthy workout and a five-round sparring session that delights those watching. If he’s got ring rust after a year away, he doesn’t show it. The sparring partner is a lefty like Guerrero, but Mayweather seems to have no problem with the style. Mayweather was throwing punches before he began walking, and at the age of 36 he’s seen just about every style imaginable and has shown a remarkable ability to adjust mid-fight to anything his opponent has or is able to do to him. That includes getting a bloody nose. “It may happen in the fight,” Mayweather said. “Comes with the territory.” The show is over, and the crowd is mostly gone now. Mayweather dips his hands in ice, and welcomes me in to the cramped dressing room. He’s gracious as he sits on a wooden bench, almost charming in a way. But the answers are genuine, and it’s clear the desire to win still burns deep. Besides, if he’s putting on a show it’s only because he has one to sell you next Saturday night. — AP

Photo of the day

Jean Marc Johannes warms up during the container gap jump that took place in Cape Town, South Africa.

Nadal wins Barcelona title BARCELONA: Rafael Nadal extended his record number of Barcelona titles to eight as he brushed off a slow start to beat Spanish compatriot Nicolas Almagro 6-4, 6-3 yesterday. Last weekend’s Monte Carlo runner-up regained his accustomed position on an ATP winner’s podium with his fourth title of 2013 and his third on clay for the year. He rallied from two breaks down on a day of drizzle and heavy conditions, beating Almagro for the tenth time without defeat. “I’m very happy,” said Nadal. “This has been an important week for me. To win here again is a great joy after everything I’ve been through. “It was a fantastic match for me,” he told a crowd which had huddled under umbrellas for the duration of the contest. “Thanks to the people who watched us.” The world number five has made a storming comeback to tennis after missing seven months from last summer with knee injuries. Since his February return, he has played finals in all six events he has entered. Nadal went into recovery mode after trailing Almagro 0-3 in less than a quarter hour on the heavy court. But as quickly as he had temporarily let his guard down, Nadal was able to muster his resources to fight back. He claimed an epic ninth game for a 5-4 lead before serving out the opening set a game later as Almagro couldn’t reach a forehand to the corner. The second seed sped away with the second set in the testing conditions and finished off the victory with an overhead smash. “I’m used to losing to Rafa,” said Almagro. “But matches like this are what makes you a better player. “I started well but after it really started to rain the balls got heavy and Rafa found his game

in the conditions.” Nadal becomes the first man this season to win four ATP titles, adding Barcelona to those he lifted in Brazil, Mexico and California. The 26-year-old who is rediscovering the form that habitually makes him the favorite when the French Open comes around in May. This victory took his Barcelona win streak to 39 matches.

In clay finals, the impeccable Spaniard has lost only to Djokovic (three times), Roger Federer (twice) and Horacio Zeballos (once). He now stands 40-1 in Barcelona. The win was the second of the season for Nadal over Almagro after beating his countryman in the Acapulco semi-final. Nadal will now prepare for another home event, the Madrid Masters, beginning next weekend. — AFP

BARCELONA: Spanish player Rafael Nadal (left) and his compatriot Nicolas Almagro pose with their trophies after the final of the Barcelona Open tennis tournament. — AFP

Glover edges ahead in New Orleans

STUTTGART: Russia’s Maria Sharapova holds her trophy and gestures in the winner’s price, a Porsche 911 Carrera 4 S Cabriolet, after defeating China’s Li Na in the final match of the WTA Porsche Tennis Grand Prix. —AFP

Sharapova lifts Stuttgart crown STUTTGART: Defending French Open champion Maria Sharapova claimed the Stuttgart WTA title yesterday, beating China’s Li Na 6-4, 6-3 in just over 90 minutes to get her clay-court season off to a winning start. Having been taken to three-sets in all of her previous three matches here en route to the final, Sharapova saved her best tennis until last to defeat the Chinese in straight sets. She broke Li twice in the first, but the Chinese managed to reply with a break of her own before Sharapova used the first of her three set points to take the first set. The 26-year-old world number two then turned up the heat in the second set, breaking Li twice, while holding her own serve without due concern and her aggressive style paid off as she wrapped up victory in an hour and a half. “I knew this was going to be the toughest match of the week, so I am really pleased with the way things worked out,” said Sharapova, who had lost the previous meeting to Li in the semi-final of January’s Australian Open. “She has played good tennis all week and I am really happy to have won here again.” Having beaten Lucie Safarova, Ana Ivanovic and Angelique Kerber on the way to the final, Sharapova is now undefeated at Stuttgart on her second appearance at the clay-court tournament. After seeing off Victoria Azarenka

in last year’s final, Sharapova then went on to win her fourth Grand Slam title at Roland Garros and she said she is happy to have got her clay-court season off to another good start. “It definitely helped last year on the way to the French Open, it’s good to bring back the same confidence on clay as last year,” said Sharapova. Li had won all her three matches in straight sets, seeing off qualifier Mirjana Lucic-Baroni, fifth-seed Petra Kvitova then qualifier Bethanie Mattek-Sands on her way to the final. “Of course, it’s always disappointing to lose in the final,” said the 31-year-old Chinese. “But it’s my first clay-court tournament, so that’s a good start to the season and I am looking forward to the rest of it. “I was feeling a bit of pressure on her returns, which could use as she’s playing very aggressively. “I’ll take some rest now before Madrid and work on a few things in Munich.” Li’s defeat managed to avoid an unusual problem both for her and the tournament sponsors, Porsche. Sharapova drove off in the brand-new sports car, which was courtside the whole week waiting for the winner, but with Li sponsored by Mercedes, her contract would have forbidden her taking part in the presentation had she won. “I couldn’t have driven the car,” she said before quipping that was the true reason she had lost the final. — AFP

NEW ORLEANS: Overnight leader Lucas Glover, bidding for his fourth PGA Tour title, survived a back nine wobble to move two strokes clear after Saturday’s third round of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans in Avondale, Louisiana. At one point three ahead of the chasing pack, former US Open champion Glover bogeyed the 14th and 17th in breezy conditions before signing off in style with a two-putt birdie at the par-five last. In pursuit of his first PGA Tour victory in nearly two years, the 33-year-old carded a two-under-par 70 to post a 14-under total of 202 at the TPC Louisiana. “The wind picked up a little bit more than was forecast,” Glover told Golf Channel about the tougher conditions facing the late starters on a mainly overcast afternoon. “There was a bunch of good scores earlier and we knew that. “I knew there were some birdies there, I just didn’t take as much of an advantage as I should have.” Fellow Americans Kyle Stanley (65), Jimmy Walker (66), Billy Horschel (66) and DA Points (70) were tied for second at 12 under with burly compatriot Kevin Stadler a further stroke back after matching the day’s best score with a nine-birdie 65. British world number four Justin Rose, the highest-ranked player in the field, was five off the pace after returning a 70 with defending champion Jason Dufner a further shot back at eight under, after a 67. Twenty-eight players are within six strokes of the lead heading into Sunday’s final round but Glover, who clinched his only major title at the 2009 US Open, remains in command. “Tee to green is pretty good, although today wasn’t as good as the first two days, and my irons were okay,” Glover said of his overall game. “I hit some loose shots today. “I had a few mis-reads and my (putting) speed was a little off today. I left a bunch of 10, 12-footers short.” While Glover was delighted to be contending for first PGA Tour title since the 2011 Wells Fargo Championship, he and his wife Krista are excitedly expecting their first child. “Any day now,” he smiled. “I don’t care when the phone rings, I will be out of here for that. We’re at 37 weeks and I can’t wait. We are thrilled.” One stroke ahead overnight, Glover doubled his lead with a birdie at the par-five second where he got up and down from an awkward lie in a greenside bunker, splashing out to inside two feet. Though Glover faltered with a bogey at the fifth after missing the fairway to the right off the tee, he regained a two-stroke cushion with a two-putt birdie at the par-five seventh. Glover also birdied the eighth, after hitting a superb approach to nine feet and sinking the putt, before reaching the turn two ahead at 14 under.

Another birdie followed at the par-five 11th, where he sank a six-footer to stretch his lead to three, but he surprisingly bogeyed the par-three 14th after pitching to inside three feet from just off the green before missing the putt. Glover did well to save par at the 16th where he missed the fairway to the left despite taking an iron off the tee but bogeyed the par-three 17th after lipping out with a seven-footer. After splitting the fairway off the tee at the par-five 18th, Glover struck a

stunning five-wood 268 yards from a downhill lie to 12 feet, then coolly two-putted for birdie. China’s 14-year-old Guan Tianlang, who once again stunned the golfing world by making his second consecutive cut on the PGA Tour this week, battled to a five-over 77 to finish at two-over 218, stone last in the 71-strong field. “I just didn’t do very good in the morning and was definitely in trouble with my driver,” Guan said after mixing three birdies with five bogeys and an ugly triple at the sixth. — Reuters

Rumford recovers to take Ballantine’s title in playoff SEOUL: Australian Brett Rumford eagled the first playoff hole to beat compatriot Marcus Fraser and Peter Whiteford of Scotland to win the European Tour’s Ballantine’s Championship in Seoul yesterday. Rumford rifled a long iron to four feet at the par-five 18th in the sudden death shootout and he confidently rolled in the putt to seal a fourth European Tour title and first for six years. “I’m really pleased with the result and I owe a lot to Ronnie my caddy and I’ve got a great team around me,” the world number 253 said in a televised interview after his win. The Australia had looked set to win the 2,205,000 euro ($2.87 million) event in regulation after six birdies on the front nine helped him to a two-shot lead from Fraser and Whiteford standing on the 17th tee. But the 36-year-old Australian notched a double-bogey six on the hole after driving into a bush and taking a penalty drop. That mistake pushed him back to 11-under for the tournament and he needed to roll in an eight foot putt on the 18th to save par after another wayward drive to finish with a four-under-par round of 68 and a 277 total. Playing partner Fraser matched his 68 and came close to moving into the lead when he narrowly missed a 20ft birdie effort on the last before Rumford’s putt. That left Whiteford (69) in the final group needing to birdie the 543-yard hole to seal a first European Tour title but the Scot produced a nervous chip with his third shot from the edge of the green and then pushed his five-foot putt to win wide of the cup. Before embarking on the playoff, Rumford called coach Pete Cowan for some advice on how to fix his driving. “A lot of thanks go to Pete,” the Australian said. “I battled with my driver constantly and I guess that’s what keeps me out of most golf tournaments. “I left a few drives right - it wasn’t just the last two drives, it was the whole back nine I was feeling stuck and a little bit trapped - had a quick word

with Pete and hit a five or six balls off the first tee and it obviously did the trick.” All three found the 18th fairway with their drives in the playoff but Whiteford again went right with his second, while Fraser sent his approach over the back of the green, leaving the flag open for Rumford. His superb approach pitching short of the

SEOUL: In this photo released by Ballantine’s Championship, Brett Rumford of Australia poses with his trophy after winning the Ballantineís Championship golf tournament. —AP flag before rolling up just a couple of feet behind the cup and he kept his composure as Whiteford made birdie and Fraser chipped up close to the flag with his third. Frenchman Romain Wattel had a final round 69 to finish fourth, two off the playoff, while South African world number seven Louis Oosthuizen (69) was a further shot back. —Reuters

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Juve on title track as Roma and Viola win

FRANCE: Lyon’s French midfielder Yoann Gourcuff (center) vies with Saint-Etienne’s French midfielders Fabien Lemoine (left) and Yohan Mollo during a French League football match. —AFP

Lyon held in St Etienne derby PARIS: Lyon maintained their two point advantage over fourth-placed SaintEtienne yesterday as they fought out a 1-1 draw in a typically hotly contested derby. Lyon’s playmaker Yoann Gourcuff grabbed a share of the spoils with the equaliser in the 55th minute in what was as usual a high voltage affair with the game being held up for a number of minutes as both sets of supporters fought with each other. Kurt Zouma had given the recentlycrowned League Cup winners the lead in the 29th minute and but for glaring misses by their strike duo Brandao and Gabonese international Pierre Emerick Aubameyang they would have run out convincing winners. Saint-Etienne remain unbeaten in the League this year but face tough away trips to second-placed Marseille and Lille before season’s end as they try to chase down the third and final Champions League spot. “If we had lost, we would have dropped five points (behind Lyon). After this we are still just two points adrift,” was the philosophical verdict of Saint-Etienne boss Christophe Galtier. His Lyon counterpart Remi Garde was

also measured in his reaction to the stalemate. “Of course when you only draw at home against another contender, it’s not a good thing, (but) we are still ahead of Saint-Etienne with our destiny still in our hands. That’s important as well,” said Garde. Elsewhere, Nice kept themselves firmly in contention for European football next term with a 3-1 victory over beleaguered Troyes. Mohamed Yattara struck first for visiting Troyes but Nice replied through Renato Civelli before Dario Cvitanich put the home side in front on the stroke of half-time with his 15th goal of the campaign. Luigi Bruins added some insurance with a third 13 minutes from time as Nice moved level with fifth-placed Lille on 57 points, one shy of Saint-Etienne, while defeat for Troyes left them bottom, six points from safety with just four games remaining. Later yesterday, leaders Paris Saint Germain will look to restore their ninepoint lead over Marseille when they play relegation-threatened Evian, who eliminated them from the French Cup quarter-finals earlier this month.—AFP

MILAN: A pair of late goals courtesy of Arturo Vidal and Claudio Marchisio handed Juventus a 2-0 win over Torino in the Turin derby on Sunday and kept the champions on track for a successful title defence. Elsewhere, Fiorentina moved up to third at the expense of AC Milan, who host Catania in yesterday’s late match, thanks to a 3-0 rout away to Sampdoria. Pablo Osvaldo scored a hat-trick and Erik Lamela one goal as Roma trounced Siena 4-0 at the Olympic Stadium to move up to fifth, while Palermo moved out of the relegation zone thanks to a shock 1-0 win at home to Inter Milan. Inter’s 13th reverse of the season was compounded by an Achilles tendon injury suffered by captain Javier Zanetti, and left the Nerazzurri in seventh, eight points off Fiorentina, who occupy the third and last Champions League place. Juventus started the day having seen their 11-point lead over Napoli reduced to eight after the southerners’ win over Pescara in Saturday’s late game. And after a stubborn display from the hosts at a rain-hit Olympic Stadium, it took a sublime goal from Vidal four minutes from the final whistle to send Juve’s bench into raptures. Six minutes later Marchisio sealed Juve’s 25th win of the campaign which restored their 11point lead on Napoli with just 12 points up for grabs in the remaining four games. “Compliments to Torino because they made life difficult for us. But we wanted to win this game and we achieved that aim,” said Juve coach Antonio Conte. “Vidal and Marchisio’s goals were crucial, now we only need one point to celebrate a second successive Scudetto with three games remaining: that would be extraordinary.” Torino came into this match determined to end a victory drought over their city rivals which stretched back to 1995. Indeed, the Granate had not scored against Juventus in a league game since a 2-2 draw in 2002. But despite frustrating Juventus throughout, Giampietro Ventura’s men lacked the final touch. Ventura had replaced striker Riccardo Meggiorini with Jonathas in the closing stages

TURIN: Juventus’ Paul Pogba (left) of France, celebrates at the end of a Serie A soccer match between Juventus and Torino at the Olympic Stadium. —AP and the Brazilian narrowly failed to make contact with Alessio Cerci’s inviting pass across goal while Leonardo Bonucci was tugging at his shirt. Torino’s claims for a penalty were waved away and on the counter Kwadwo Asamoah’s cross to the back post for Paul Pogba saw the Frenchman miss the target from only a metre out. Moments later, Marchisio squared the ball for Vidal and from 25 metres the Chilean took one touch before beating Gillet in the Torino net with a precise dipping shot. “It’s the most important goal I’ve scored since I’ve been here, now we’re within touching distance of the Scudetto,” said Vidal. Torino were reduced to 10 men in the closing stages when Polish defender Kamil Glik saw red for a second bookable offence following a foul on Quagliarella, meaning he has been sent off in both derbies this season. In the second minute of injury time, Juve made it two.

Huntelaar hits hat-trick on return to Schalke

Ronaldo injury worry cools Real revival hope MADRID: Real Madrid are sweating on the fitness of Cristiano Ronaldo as they go in search of an unlikely comeback in the second-leg of their Champions League semi-final against Borussia Dortmund tomorrow. The Germans are huge favourites to progress to the final at Wembley on May 25 after four goals from Robert Lewandowski handed them a 4-1 win over the Spanish champions in the first-leg at Signal Iduna Park last week. And any hope a Madrid revival would seem to depend on their talisman overcoming a thigh strain he suffered in the first-leg. The Portuguese has scored 50% of Real’s 24 goals in the competition so far this season, but missed Saturday’s 2-1 win over Atletico in the Madrid derby and also took part in a solitary training session with physical trainer Carlos Lalin yesterday. However, midfielder Angel di Maria believes Jose Mourinho’s men can take heart from the way in which they started last season’s semi-final second-leg against Bayern Munich. Trailing 2-1 from the first-leg, Real stormed into an early 2-0 lead on the night and although they ended up going out on penalties, Di Maria said they have to start with the same intensity on Wednesday. “We have a great chance of going through,” he told reporters after scoring the winner against Atleti on Saturday night. “Last year, against Bayern, we started well and were 2-0 up. We hope that this year we can turn it around, but we need to give everything. In football anything can happen.

“We hope that the fans support us to the maximum, we are going to give everything to try and achieve it.” Presuming Ronaldo is fit, Di Maria’s inclusion in the starting line-up is likely to be the only change in the Real side from the first-leg. The Argentine would have started in Dortmund had the birth of his daughter the day before the game not delayed his arrival in Germany and he will replace Luka Modric with Mesut Ozil moving back into his preferred central role. Michael Essien’s return to fitness also gives Mourinho the option of playing the Ghanian at right-back with Sergio Ramos returning to the heart of the defence, but it is expected that the Spanish international will again line-up at full-back with Pepe and Raphael Varane being paired in central defence. Dortmund meanwhile have injury concerns of their own with Polish international full-back Lukasz Piszczek struggling with a groin injury he picked up in the first-leg. Midfielders Ilkay Gundogan (neck) and Mario Goetze (hip) are also carrying knocks and manager Jurgen Klopp made 10 changes for Saturday’s 2-1 win at Fortuna Dusseldorf. Defender Mats Hummels was the sole survivor from Wednesday’s thrashing of Madrid but he said Dortmund still have a long way to go if they are to make it to Wembley next month. “We don’t even have one foot in the final yet, at most all we have is a small toe,” he told reporters. “If anyone goes to Madrid and thinks you can’t lose 3-0, then they’re being presumptuous.”—AFP

Andrea Pirlo’s freekick to the back post was headed back across goal by Fabio Quagliarella, and while Vidal missed with a diving header it left Marchisio free to fire into the top of the net. Fiorentina’s win came thanks to goals from Juan Cuadrado, Adem Ljajic and Alberto Aquilani and has left Milan needing to beat Catania if they are to reclaim third place. “It was a perfect Sunday, we got the result we wanted and we played great football,” said Viola coach Vincenzo Montella. But he insisted: “We’re not thinking about third place. We’ll see at the end of the season.” Francesco Totti, meanwhile, failed to score but set up Osvaldo for his first and Lamela two minutes later before providing Argentine -born I talian Osvaldo’s third. After a mid-season lull, Roma are now up to fifth and in contention for a place in the Europa League.—AFP

GERMANY: Hamburg’s Heung-Min Son of South Korea (right) and Schalke’s Benedikt Hoewedes challenge for the ball during the German First Division Bundesliga soccer match. —AP

STUTTGART: Holland’s Klaas-Jan Huntelaar celebrated his Bundesliga return after six weeks out with a knee injury by netting a hat-trick as Schalke 04 hammered Hamburg 4-1 yesterday to keep the Royal Blues on course for a Champions League place. After Hamburg took an early lead at the Veltins Arena through Germany’s Marcel Jansen, Brazil midfielder Michel Bastos pulled a goal back before ‘the Hunter’ went on a goal-spree. “The win was highly deserved, especially the margin,” said Schalke coach Jens Keller. “Huntelaar had worked hard in training and we’re happy that he’s back again. “We have taken a small step towards consolidating our place.” Huntelaar, last season’s top scorer in the German league, grabbed his first on 21 minutes, while two headers just eight minutes apart midway through the second-half wrapped up his hat-trick. The win keeps Schalke fourth, which carries a Champions League play-off place, three points ahead of Eintracht Frankfurt, who were earlier held to a goalless draw at Mainz 05 earlier. The defeat is a set-back to Hamburg’s hopes of finishing in the top six as they suffered their third defeat in five games to leave them eighth as their defence crumbled in the second-half. On Saturday, Bayern made ten changes from their Champions League semifinal, first leg 4-0 win over Barcelona, but still beat Freiburg 1-0 in Munich to break the record for the number of points in a Bundesliga season. Centre-back Jerome Boateng was the only survivor from the starting line-up which blitzed Barcelona last Tuesday at the Allianz Arena as coach Jupp Heynckes rested his stars for Wednesday’s return leg at the Camp Nou. Swiss winger Xherdan Shaqiri hit the winner on 35 minutes to give Bayern, who were confirmed as champions three weeks ago, their 27th win from their 31 league games this season. With 84 points, they have now passed Dortmund’s previous record of 81, set last year, for the most Bundesliga points collected in a campaign. It was also Heynckes’s 50th Bundesliga victory since taking charge at Bayern in July 2011. His team are bidding to become the first German club to win the treble of European, league and cup titles. Freiburg drop to sixth in the league but only two points separate the five teams bidding for fourth and that much sought-after Champions League place. Second-placed Borussia Dortmund, who routed Real Madrid 4-1 last Wednesday in their Champions League semi-final, first leg, also made 10 changes for their 2-1 win at Fortuna Duesseldorf. Poland star Robert Lewandowski, who hit four against Real, failed to score after coming off the bench for the last 20 minutes, bringing to an end his club record-run of having scored in 12 consecutive games. Midfielder Nuri Sahin put Dortmund ahead with a stunning goal from 35 metres out before replacement Jakub Blaszczykowski added the second while Duesseldorf midfielder Adam Bodzek pulled a goal back with a header two minutes from time. Bayer Leverkusen remain third with a 1-0 home win over Werder Bremen as Germany striker Stefan Kiessling netted a 35th-minute penalty which confirmed Bayer’s Champions League place for next season. Mid-table VfL Wolfsburg ran out 3-0 winners at home to Borussia Moenchengladbach, but the relegation battle heated up with two of the bottom three teams picking up wins. After Friday’s 3-2 defeat at home to Hanover 96, bottom side Greuther Fuerth’s relegation was confirmed as 16th-placed Augsburg romped to a 3-0 win at home to German Cup finalists VfB Stuttgart. Second-from-bottom Hoffenheim beat Nuremberg 2-1 to keep their survival hopes alive. Fuerth, who host Freiburg in a fortnight, have now just one home match left to avoid becoming the first Bundesliga team to go an entire campaign without a single home victory. —AFP

Why Barca is ‘more than a club’ BARCELONA: Every team loses, but no team loses quite like Barcelona. They get “hammered,” “knocked out,” or rendered “unrecognizable.” And that’s just the good news. This is what happens when a team sets the bar as high as Barcelona has: Every loss in a big game is immediately pronounced the end of an era. Every moment not spent hoisting another trophy must mean the sky is crashing down. The story of their demise has been written so often of late that headline writers keep one ready for either occasion. Guess which ones they trotted out after the 4-0 beating Bayern Munich laid on the Spanish side in Champions League semifinal play earlier this week. “Changing of the guard” was the most popular, and there may yet be plenty of truth in that. Bayern Munich has played steely soccer for the better part of three seasons now, and they’re more skillful and imaginative than any German side,

maybe ever. Throw in fellow Bundesliga member Borussia Dortmund’s 4-1 win over Barca rival Real Madrid in the other Champions League semi and there’s no doubting that German soccer is on the rise. But here’s the short list of what Bayern would have to do just to get on equal footing: win two Champions League titles and reach three semifinals, three domestic league cups and two club world cups. Besides, Barca isn’t going anywhere. Never mind that what was - and still might be - the best soccer team anywhere still has Lionel Messi, the best player on the planet, and another handful who aren’t far behind. Or that Barcelona has won 15 of the last 19 titles it has competed for the last few years, and could wrap up No. 16, Spain’s La Liga title, as early as Saturday. “When the things don’t go your way you have to count to 10, wait until everyone calms down a little and takes time to think and use reason,” Barcelona mid-

fielder Andres Iniesta said. “If we want to keep competing like we have been and fight for titles, we need to improve many things.” No argument there, not after the way Bayern Munich dismantled what had been the most creative and consistent attacks in the game, and turned elements of it back on Barcelona itself. The Spanish side looked weary at first, out of ideas by the middle and downright desperate at the end. It was a dismal performance that tied off a two-month stretch uncharacteristically chockfull of them. In their first Champions League outing against Paris St. Germain, then AC Milan, and in back-to-back losses to hated league rival Real, Barcelona had looked much the same. But in the second-leg game of each game, Messi, the incomparable engine at the heart of the team, rode to the rescue late. He was fighting off injuries throughout that same stretch and accounts that described Messi as “hamstrung” against

Bayern might have been more accurate than the authors intended. Like nearly everyone at Barcelona at the moment, he is out of gas and out of sorts. Coach Tito Vilanova has been undergoing treatment for a saliva gland tumor for much of the season and Messi, a sensitive sort, conceded the mood at the club was subdued. They know there won’t be any coming back against Bayern in the second leg of this one, brave words aside. “We have to believe that we can do it, that we have a chance to do so,” Iniesta said. “Four goals is very difficult, but if we have even the slightest chance we have to try. I can’t say that we can score five times against them, but we have to go out looking to win, as if it were a final.” Stranger things have happened, but they won’t. Not this time. Losing gets tiring after a while, but so does winning. Barcelona hasn’t forgot how to play soccer, it simply needs time to catch its breath. Club vice president Josep

Bartomeu made clear this week he intends to bring Vilanova back, and keep the nucleus of Messi, Iniesta, Xavi Hernandez, Gerard Pique, and Sergio Busquets. For several seasons now, the mostoften rumored big acquisition has been Neymar, the young Brazilian who’s spurned overtures from a number of big European clubs to stay at Santos, at least until his homeland hosts the 2014 World Cup. A more reasonable target might be Dortmund central defender Mats Hummels, who won’t come cheap. But Barca’s defense, never stout, is getting old and in need of repair. A 4-0 loss, good as Bayern was on the night, still does not happen by accident. In truth, Barcelona spent its entire Champions League campaign just hanging on. They finally let go. After the run they’ve been on, and the season they’ve had to endure, that’s not a shame. Just a loss, and nothing more.—AP

Juve on title track as Roma and Viola win

Nadal wins Barcelona title

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013



Ronaldo injury worry cools Real revival hope Page 19

LONDON: Manchester United’s Dutch striker Robin van Persie (center) passes the ball between Arsenal’s English defender Kieran Gibbs (left) and Arsenal’s French defender Laurent Koscielny (right) during the English Premier League football match. — AFP

Van Persie returns to punish Arsenal Arsenal 1

Man United 1

LONDON: Robin van Persie returned to punish his former club by scoring an equaliser as newly crowned Premier League champions Manchester United compromised Arsenal’s Champions League hopes in a feisty 1-1 draw yesterday. Back at Arsenal for the first time since his £24 million ($37 million, 28 million euros) transfer to Old Trafford in 2012, Van Persie netted a cool

penalty just before half-time to cancel out Theo Walcott’s early opener. It could prove a costly goal for Arsenal, who failed to reclaim third place from Chelsea and now find their hold on the fourth and final Champions League qualifying place under threat from Tottenham Hotspur. Arsene Wenger’s side trail Chelsea by one point and lead Spurs by two, but they have played a game more than both their London rivals. “We will only know at the end of the season (if it was a good result),” Wenger told Sky Sports. “But it keeps our unbeaten run going. We put a lot of energy into this game, and that’s very positive.” The draw left United 14 points clear of Manchester City, although they can no longer fulfil manager Alex

Ferguson’s wish of breaking Chelsea’s Premier League points record of 95 from the 2004-05 campaign. “We always looked a bigger threat, but that’s not taking away the fact that Arsenal put a lot into the game today,” said Ferguson. “They worked their socks off, and credit to them.” Fresh from scoring the hat-trick against Aston Villa on Monday that gave United the title, Van Persie received a hostile reception in his first game back at the Emirates Stadium since his acrimonious departure last year. The Dutchman even walked towards the home changing room on his arrival at the ground, before realising his error. There was no confusing the Arsenal fans’ feelings towards their

Reading and QPR both share relegation misery Reading 0

QPR 0 READING: Reading and QPR were both relegated from the Premier League after they drew 0-0 at the Madejski Stadium yesteday. A win for bottom club Reading or second bottom QPR would have been enough to keep alive their slim survival hopes with three games to go. But as had been the case all season, the Royals and Rangers lacked the required quality in the final third and they are now certain to start next season in the Championship. Reading boss Nigel Adkins had refused to acknowledge his side were down before the game, but the home fans knew the truth well before full-time as they chanted ironically about looking forward to life in the second tier.QPR chief Harry Redknapp had been more realistic about his team’s survival chances and on the evidence of this errorstrewn encounter neither manager can have any complaints about going down. Adkins named the same starting eleven that lost 2-1 at Norwich, while Redknapp rang the changes as he replaced five players from their 2-0 defeat to Stoke last time out. QPR were under intense pressure during the opening five minutes, but Nick Blackman

shot high over Robert Green’s bar as Reading failed to make the possession count. Then when Rangers did launch their first attack of the game Jermaine Jenas followed suit by missing the target with a curling effort in the ninth minute. The visitors continued to push forwards undeterred and had another decent chance just three minutes later from a set-piece. Royals midfielder Jem Karacan upended Adel Taarabt on the edge of the box and Esteban Granero’s follow-up free-kick shaved the woodwork as it sailed past goalkeeper Alex McCarthy and out of play. As Reading began to push up, they were caught unaware several times. Stephane Mbia chipped a weighted pass over the back four from inside the centre circle and Jay Bothroyd chased it down before controlling on his chest and attempted to lift the ball into the back of the net from the right-hand corner of the box. McCarthy was already rushing off his line and did enough to put the striker off. Reading’s opportunities were more sporadic and when they did come, they too failed to convert. With just seven minutes to go until half-time a goal-mouth scramble developed in the QPR box, however, Pavel Pogrebnyak and then Adrian Mariappa couldn’t bundle the ball over the line. In fact Reading probably saved their best chance of the half to the very last moment. Jobi McAnuff cut in from the left wing and launched a stinging 30-yard drive goal-bound that Green managed to parry away from danger after shimmying to his left. — AFP

former idol, however, with boos raining down on him as the home side welcomed the champions onto the pitch with a guard of honor. Wenger described the reaction as “disappointed love”, and to the delight of the home support, the United number 20 was to lose his bearings again to costly effect in the second minute. His crossfield pass inadvertently found Arsenal full-back Kieran Gibbs, who in turn picked out Tomas Rosicky, and from the Czech’s through ball, Walcott beat David de Gea to put the hosts ahead, despite a suggestion of offside. Pressing United high up the pitch and snapping into tackles, Arsenal’s play brimmed with purpose, while the carelessness in the visitors’ play suggested the title had been celebrated

EPL results/standings Arsenal 1 (Walcott 2) Manchester Utd 1 (Van Persie 44-pen); Chelsea 2 (Oscar 43, Lampard 45-pen) Swansea 0; Reading 0 QPR 0. Playing today Aston Villa v Sunderland English Premier League table after yesterday’s matches (played, won, drawn, lost, goals for, goals against, points): 35 27 4 4 79 36 85 — champions Man City 34 21 8 5 61 31 71 Chelsea 34 19 8 7 68 35 65 Arsenal 35 18 10 7 66 36 64 Tottenham 34 18 8 8 60 43 62 Everton 35 15 14 6 52 38 59 Liverpool 35 14 12 9 67 42 54 West Brom 34 14 6 14 46 44 48 Swansea 34 10 12 12 43 44 42 West Ham 35 11 9 15 41 49 42 Fulham 35 10 10 15 44 53 40 Stoke 35 9 13 13 31 41 40 Southampton 35 9 12 14 47 57 39 Norwich 35 8 14 13 33 54 38 Sunderland 34 9 10 15 38 45 37 Newcastle 35 10 7 18 43 66 37 Aston Villa 34 8 10 16 36 63 34 Wigan 34 8 8 18 39 62 32 QPR 35 4 13 18 29 56 25 — relegated Reading 35 5 10 20 37 65 25 — relegated Note: Top four teams qualify for the Champions League and bottom three clubs are relegated

with a little too much abandon. Santi Cazorla worked De Gea with an effort from range and the United goalkeeper also had to box away a shot from Lukas Podolski after Cazorla robbed Antonio Valencia of possession. Gradually, though, Van Persie’s influence grew. He teed up Phil Jones for a headed chance that should have yielded a goal, before drawing a superb star-jump save from Wojciech Szczesny with a close-range header. He was also booked, for sliding in on Per Mertesacker, but he finished the half by sweeping a 44th-minute equaliser past Szczesny from the penalty spot after he had been felled by Bacary Sagna inside the Arsenal area. It was his 25th league goal of the

season but his celebration was respectfully muted. The sides took to sparring in a less keenly contested second half, with Rosicky poking a shot wide for Arsenal, while Rafael da Silva fired over at the other end and Wayne Rooney headed straight at Szczesny. Cazorla then whipped a free-kick wide after Valencia had been penalised for a handball right on the corner of the United box, with referee Phil Dowd ignoring the hosts’ claims for a penalty. Laurent Koscielny volleyed over from a corner and Cazorla extended De Gea with a long-range drive, while substitute Ryan Giggs came close to snatching victory for United at the death with a shot that was deflected just wide.— AFP

Lampard helps Chelsea cement top four spot Chelsea 2

Man Utd

Swansea 0

LONDON: Frank Lampard moved to within one goal of Bobby Tambling’s Chelsea record with the penalty that sealed his team’s 2-0 victory over Swansea yesterday. With Tambling watching from the stands, Lampard hit his 201st goal for the Blues shortly after setting up Oscar for the strike that put Rafael Benitez’s side ahead in the 44th minute at Stamford Bridge. The win strengthened Chelsea’s grip on a top four place, moving them three points clear of Tottenham who lie fifth with just four games remaining. The match also marked referee Mark Clattenburg’s first appearance at the Bridge since he was cleared of racially abusing John Obi Mikel during Chelsea’s defeat to Manchester United last October. Clattenburg’s return passed off with little controversy, although Benitez and his players were convinced Swansea captain Ashley Williams should have received a second yellow card midway through the second half. The referee’s decision not to punish Williams for pulling back Demba Ba made little difference to the outcome however, with Chelsea easing their way to victory against a Swansea team with little to play for. Benitez’s side came into the game on the back of Thursday’s impressive victory in Basle in the first leg of their Europa

League semi-final. That result moved the Blues closer to a second successive European final following last year’s Champions League triumph, but Benitez has always maintained a place in the top four is the club’s main priority. And Chelsea’s hopes of securing a place in next season’s Champions League were lifted ahead of this clash by Tottenham’s failure to beat Wigan 24 hours earlier. But there were few signs the prospect of putting clear water between themselves and the White Hart Lane club had provided any extra motivation during a tepid opening. A long-range drive from Ba brought a smart save from Swansea keeper Michel Vorm while at the other end Ashley Cole’s acrobatic block prevented Michu’s header from testing Petr Cech, but otherwise there were few early opportunities. Lampard’s introduction in place of the injured Ramires in the 28th minute injected more urgency into Chelsea’s play and the midfielder declared his intentions with a powerful run from halfway and shot that again brought Vorm into action. And from the resulting corner, Gary Cahill, back in the starting line-up after undergoing minor knee surgery, headed just over. Cahill was partnered in central defence by John Terry, who retained his starting place as Benitez broke with his policy of rotating the club captain. And Terry, who revealed last week his intention to reverse his decision to retire from international football, contributed to Oscar’s opening goal that came in the 43rd minute. The centre back collected the ball after a poor Swansea clearance, finding Lampard who released Oscar on the right hand side of the Swansea area and the Brazil international finished with a clinical right foot shot across Vorm and inside the far post. — AFP

From just a dollar, Kenya’s cellphone bank gives loans Page 22


Global growth concerns amid weak economic data Page 23

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

Lexus celebrates international design community in NYC Page 25 Page 23

Japan puts aside Russia row for sake of economy

Abu Dhabi plans financial free zone Free zone could compete with DIFC ABU DHABI: The oil-rich emirate of Abu Dhabi is putting finishing touches to plans to establish a financial free zone that could resemble, and therefore compete with, the Dubai I nternational Financial Centre, sources familiar with the matter said. A federal decree was passed by the United Arab Emirates’ President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahayan in February to create the area, known as the Abu Dhabi World Financial Market, on Al-Mar yah island, the sources told Reuters. Detailed regulations covering the

zone will be outlined shortly, an Abu Dhabi government source said, declining to be named under briefing rules. “It will have all the offerings of a financial free zone - 100 percent foreign ownership, tax and capital repatriation, internationally accepted laws and regulations and other things,” the source said. The UAE’s free zones are areas in which foreign companies can operate under light regulation, and where foreign investors are allowed to take 100 percent ownership in companies; outside the zones, they general-

ly need to have local partners. One of the country ’s most successful free zones is the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), established in 2004 with its own civil and commercial laws, its own courts and a financial exchange, NASDAQ Dubai. It has become the Gulf’s top financial centre, housing regional headquarters for many of the world’s biggest banks and finance firms. Others have tried to emulate its success; the Qatar Financial Centre was set up in 2005 in Doha, and the Bahrain Financial Harbour opened in

2009. Unlike neighbouring Dubai, Abu Dhabi has huge oil reserves, so it has less economic need to develop as a financial centre. But Abu Dhabi is keen to develop its economy beyond oil and make its mark on the global stage. Al-Maryah island, formerly Sow wah island, is close to downtown Abu Dhabi and has an area of about 114 hectares. It has been developed by Abu Dhabi state fund Mubadala since 2007, and some 50 local and international firms have set up offices on the island. Because of its oil wealth and the

monetary resources of its banks and sovereign wealth fund, Abu Dhabi will have some strengths as a financial centre, but it is not clear whether it can draw much business away from Dubai, which has a wellentrenched position and a more freewheeling business culture. “ The challenge for Abu Dhabi would be to find a niche, a competitive edge for how to compete with Dubai, Qatar and Bahrain and capture its market share,” said Tariq Qaqish, head of asset management at Al Mal Capital. — Reuters

BASEL: A woman walks at the booth of Swiss watchmaker Swatch on the opening day of Baselworld watch fair. — AFP

Size matters for Swiss watch industry in Basel BASEL: It seems nothing is too big for Switzerland’s watch industry, whose vast annual Baselworld trade fair is a touchstone for the health of a sector which has bucked the downbeat global economy. The 41st edition of the fair in the northern city of Basel, which wraps up on May 2, has seen top brands striving to outdo one another by doubling and even tripling their previous years’ display space. Baselworld-also devoted to jewelry-is the largest watch trade fair in the world and is expected this year to draw 100,000 visitors. The tone is set from the get-go by stands such as that of Tag Heuer-part of the stable of French luxury group LVMHwhich opted to create a three-story space in the style of a cruise liner with 40 separate areas. It took a crew of more than a hundred seven days to set up the stand, which was designed by Italian architect Ottavio Di Blasi. Rival Breitling opted for a giant suspended aquarium where 4,300 tropical fish performed a magnificent underwater ballet. Jacquet Droz, a high-end label which is part of the Swatch Group, returned to its roots, replicating the clockwork

automatons that made its name when it was founded in the 18th century. It tapped the talents of present-day craftsman Francois Junod, whose workshop lies in the Jura Mountains, and who was commissioned to produce a life-sized magician which puts on a show every quarter hour, revealing hidden watches. In another sign of the sector’s upbeat mood, the exhibition hall was refurbished completely for this year’s edition by bigname Basel architects Herzog & de Meuron, who also designed the bird’snest style stadium for the Beijing Olympics. “Despite the economic gloom, we’re really optimistic for this year,” said Jacques Duchene, head of the exhibitors’ committee. “We have an industry that’s surfing the crest of a growth wave,” he added. Swiss watchmakers posted record exports last year of 21.4 billion Swiss francs (17 billion euros, $23.5 billion), which was nearly 11 percent more than a year earlier, according to their trade federation. The number of watches exported by Switzerland hit 29.2 million in 2012, giving the country a major share of the 1.2 billion made worldwide, half of them in

China. Baselworld is a key location for watchmakers’ product launches. Swatch, for example, known for its multicoloured plastic watches, unveiled its latest brainchild at the fair: the Sistem 51 mechanical watch. Its 51 moving parts give it the level of intricacy usually reserved for handcrafted watches-which require lengthy assembly-but it is designed to be produced on an industrial scale and it set to hit the shops in October. “It’s the classical price range of Swatch Group, between 100 and 200 Swiss francs,” said Swatch boss Nick Hayek. “We all think more complicated, higher price, mechanical watches, sophistication is the name of the game. We need this. But we also need innovations that come also from the mass,” he said. Baselworld is about more than setting out the watchmakers’ wares. It’s also closely observed for deal-making news and trends. On Wednesday, for example, Switzerland’s Corum said it had been acquired by China Haidian, which already owns the Swiss brand Eterna. China Haidian said it had acquired 100 percent of Corum for 86 million Swiss francs, and that the deal would open new prospects for the Corum brand

worldwide. Founded in 1955, Corum is known for its gold and jewelled encrusted watches that start from 4,000 Swiss francs. The Hong Kong-listed China Haidian Holdings Limited manufactures its own watches and also distributes selected Swiss brands throughout Asia. China’s rising appetite for luxury goods has been a boon for the sector, but there have been warnings of storm clouds after sales-growth fell sharply there. For those in the sector, however, there is no cause for alarm. “In sum, the weakness in China doesn’t worry us,” said JeanClaude Biver, head of the Hublot brand, also owned by LVMH. Sales have continued to rise robustly in Hong Kong, for example, where many mainland Chinese travel to buy their luxury goods. And Chinese tourists are also flocking to Switzerland to snap up watches. “The Chinese market is in a consolidation phase which for the moment is affecting high-end watches above all,” Biver told AFP. “But the huge potential of mid-range watches, which is phenomenal, is only at the start of its story,” he added, noting that not every customer is after a 50,000Swiss-franc watch.—AFP

Mid-caps continue to boost Kuwait Qatar still vulnerable to Doha Global drain DUBAI: Qatar resumed its upward momentum yesterday after the previous sessionís reverse, while heavy buying of mid-cap stocks sent Dubai to a new multi-year high. Other Gulf markets were mixed on the opening day of the week. Qatarís index advanced 0.5 percent, its eighth gain in the last nine sessions, as it maintained a recovery from the midmonth sell-off which saw a run of seven straight declines. These falls were attributed to local investors selling to free up liquidity for the initial public offer of Doha Global, the $12 billion investment firm backed by assets from the countryís

sovereign wealth fund. However, in the wake of strong firstquarter corporate earnings, investors have now returned to the market. ìIt is the overall confidence from the results, and the market has lagged the UAE recently so investors are seeing some value,î said Julian Bruce, director of institutional equity sales at EFG Hermes in Dubai. However, once further details about the IPO emerge and the start date is announced, further sell-offs could take place, Bruce added. In Dubai, heavy buying of mid-cap stocks pushed the index up 1.6 percent -

above 2,100 points - to its highest close since November 2009. It was the bourseís sixth successive gain, in which time it has risen 8.2 percent. Drake and Scull soared 7.7 percent in its biggest one-day jump in more than two years. Nearly 137.5 million of its shares changed hands, also a record for the last 24 months. Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB) climbed 5.3 percent and Dubai Investment Co jumped 4.4 percent. ìThe main catalyst is still results - the banks are issuing strong numbers and are supporting their share prices and the market,î said Marwan

Shurrab, vice-president and chief trader at Gulfmena Investments in Dubai. Drake and Scull is due to repor t on Wednesday, while DIB posted a 17-percent year-on-year gain in profit on April 14. Kuwaitís measure recorded a sixth successive gain, rising 1.0 percent to its highest level since late April 2010. Attention was again focused on smallcap stocks, a trend normally seen when fundamental catalysts are absent. Investors Holding and Gulf Investment House were among the most heavily traded stocks, climbing 4.4 and 1.6 percent respectively.—Reuters

Japan Dreamliner test flight lands in Tokyo TOKYO: A modified Dreamliner took to the skies over Tokyo yesterday with top Boeing and ANA executives aboard, as the planemaker and its leading client sought to reassure passengers the jetliners are safe. It was the first flight by one of All Nippon Airways’ 787s since the worldwide fleet of the next-generation planes was grounded over safety concerns due to faulty batteries sparking fires on board two planes. The test flight by ANA, which has the largest fleet of Dreamliners, came a day after Ethiopian Airlines became the first carrier to resume flying the 787s. After a two-hour test flight from Tokyo’s Haneda airport, ANA chairman Shinichiro Ito and Boeing Commercial Airplanes CEO Ray Conner descended the stairs of the Dreamliner. “After three months it’s a terrific feeling to have an ANA 787 back in the air, and I am very pleased to say that it was a perfect flight on a perfect day,” Conner told reporters. “As is evident by the fact that we are here today, we are very confident in the solution that we developed... and I can tell you that we put our family on this airplane on any day of a week, and any time.” ANA and Boeing are anxious to put the damaging crisis behind them but it could still be at least a month before the carrier can complete all the battery fixes and get its planes in the air. Ito said the company may fly the aircraft in May on an irregular basis and that it would aim to resume normal flights from June 1. “We had not necessarily expected this (problem of batteries) as the launch customer, but I can say it was a meaningful challenge,” Ito said. Neither Ito nor Conner commented on details of compensation, which ANA has said it will seek after months of cancellations and disruption to schedules. The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and other reg-

ulators grounded the worldwide Dreamliner fleet in mid-January after failures of the lithium-ion batteries on the jetliner caused a fire on board one parked plane in Boston and forced the emergency landing of an ANA-operated aircraft in Japan. Following months of investigations, the FAA on Thursday issued formal approval of Boeing’s battery fix, with Ethiopian Airlines on Saturday becoming the first carrier to resume using the aircraft. Speaking in Tokyo on Saturday, Mike Sinnett, Boeing’s chief project manager for the Dreamliner programme, said the Japanese test flight showed the faith that the US aircraft manufacturer placed in the battery fix. “What it represents is... the depth of confidence that Ray Conner has in the series of design solutions we have brought forward,” Sinnett told reporters. Although the exact cause of the battery failures has yet to be pinpointed as noted by the FAA on Thursday-Sinnett insisted that the refitted planes were safe to fly. “Even if we missed the root cause, we have identified 80 potential causal factors and we have addressed all of them in the design,” he said. The battery solution eliminated the potential for fire and heat to get into the airplane, he said. Japanese travellers expressed mixed feelings towards the modified Dreamliners. Yuji Kawaguchi, 56, said he would like to see the 787 operations resume soon. “I often fly for business trips,” he said as he waited for a flight to southern Kagoshima at Haneda airport. “As far as the testing shows no problem, we might as well start thinking about improving convenience.” In contrast, Tomohiro Obayashi, 32, from northern Hokkaido expressed concerns that the root-cause has not been identified. “I don’t feel like flying on the aircraft for a while.” — AFP

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Oman telco Nawras witnesses Q1 loss Customer base rises 12.3% to 2.23m DUBAI: Oman’s No.2 telecom operator Nawras reported a 21 percent drop in first-quarter profit yesterday, missing analysts’ estimates as text and domestic call income fell. The firm posted a fifth straight quarterly profit decline as margins shrunk and depreciation rose while overall revenue increased 3 percent. Nawras, majorityowned by Ooredoo (Qatar Telecom), made a net profit of 7.7 million rials ($20 million) in the three months to March 31, down from 9.8 million rials in the year-earlier period. Two analysts polled by Reuters forecast

Nawras, which ended Oman Telecommunication Co’s (Omantel) monopoly in 2005, would make a quarterly profit of 10 million rials. Margins at Gulf telecom operators are under sustained pressure as subscribers increasingly switch to Internet-based communications such as instant messaging and Voice over IP (VoIP) services. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA), a key industry metric, fell 4.1 percent to 23.2 million rials. Nawras said increased depreciation arising from network modernisation had impacted its

Al-Tijari announces Najma draw winners

May be it is too late to save the euro-zone By Hayder Tawfik


pain’s unemployment rate stands at 27 percent i.e. 1 in 3 Spaniards is out of work. Last time the unemployment number was that high the Dictator General Franco was in power nearly 37 years ago. The alarm bells must be ringing

at the corridors of the European central bank and at the offices of those euro-zone politicians who haveindeed run out of ideas. May be it is not Spain that will trigger a great depression but could be Germany. The German economy is showing signs of a big slow down indeed. About 50 percent of German exports go to Europe. Latest figures from the highly export orientated industry in Germany such as the auto industry, engineering and chemical manufacturers show that the slow down has indeed started. I think the so-called talented euro-zone politicians who are sitting in Brussels are watching the wrong movie. They all watching how low the yields are on their government debts and to them this is a sign of successful policies. On the contrary the low and falling yields indicating that there is no economic growth throughout the euro-zone and the possibility that their economies might fall into a big recession if not depression. In 1929 the US was in depression and the unemployment numbers was in double digits similar to what some euro-zone members are facing now. What terrible waste of human and other resources and very severe hardship for millions of people. The World War II was the savior for the US economy. The ECB should no longer worry about inflation and should be more concerned aboutpossible deflation. The very high

net profit. First-quarter revenue was 48.2 million rials, Nawras said in a statement. This compares with 46.8 million rials a year ago. Nawras attributed the revenue increase to rising income from fixed and mobile data and international calls, although income from text and domestic calls fell. The company did not provide a revenue breakdown. The operator had 2.23 million fixed and mobile customers as of March 31, up 12.3 percent from a year earlier. In January, Nawras said its 2012 annual profit fell 22.2 percent from a year earlier. —Reuters

KUWAIT: Commercial Bank of Kuwait held the Al-Najma Account Daily draw on April 28, 2013. The draw was held under the supervision of the Ministry of Commerce & Industry represented by Abdulaziz Ashkanani. The winners of the Najma Daily Draw who get KD 7,000 are: Murtaza Hakeem Aldin Vasan, Mohammad Shaheen Hussain AlDashti, Shahida Gulam Mustafa, Zahed Omar Mohammed Abo Zaid and Hussain Karem Moawad Abbas Al-Thafeeri. The Commercial Bank of Kuwait announces the biggest daily draw in Kuwait with the launch of the new Najma account. Customers of the bank can now enjoy a KD 7,000 daily prize which is the highest in the country and another 4 mega prizes during the year worth KD 100,000 each on different occasions: The National Day, Eid Al Fitr, Eid AlAdha and on June 19 which is the date of the bank’s establishment. With a minimum balance of KD 500, customers will be eligible for the daily draw provided that the money is in the account one week prior to the daily draw or 2 months prior to the mega draw. In addition, for each KD 25 a customer can get one chance for winning instead of KD 50. Commercial Bank of Kuwait takes this opportunity to congratulate all lucky winners and also extends appreciation to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry for their effective supervision of the draws which were conducted in an orderly and organized manner.

unemploymentnumbers and the recent fall in Gold, Oil and other commodities will depress the inflation numbers in the coming months. The ECB should be worried about the whole of the euro-zone economies rather than keeping an eye on Germany. The troubled euro-zone economies need a high inflation rate to help them close their budget gaps as nominal revenues race ahead of expense. If this happens they will find themselves in surplus and their debt to GDP ratios will start to decline. At the same time the euro will weaken against most currencies that will improve the current account positions of most of the euro-zone countries. Higher inflation and a weaker euro are not acceptable to Germany hence the ECB’s objection to allow this to happen. Germany should be forced to permit a monetary rescue of the euro-zone, as opposed to a fiscal (Eurobond) approach. Also, the ECB should stand ready to refinance all maturing debt of the euro-zone countries based on some fiscal criteria. This will increase the ECB’s balance sheet at favorable rate and will help to grow its assets at a higher rate than inflation. Obviously the ECB at some time has to be careful about expanding its balance sheet so a process of sterilization is required. Nothing will stop the ECB from selling bonds directly to the public. Investors will be much happier to buy bonds issued by the ECB and will be less in favor of holding riskier bonds issued by some troubled eurozone members. This will most likely lead to Spain, Greece, Portugal, Italy and France being in surplus and would not have to face future refinancing risk. Germany should be pleased with this scenario because it will no longer have to bail out anyone. Nominal economic growth will pick up quickly across the euro-zone and inflation will pick up and will range between 1 and 3 percent. Germany has to accept that with growth come inflation and what the eurozone needs now is economic growth and not further austerity measures. The US Federal reserve has been flowing these policies since it was established. I know that mush weaker euro is not acceptable to the Germans but that is the price to pay if you don’t want the euro to break up and aneconomic depression to follow. Hayder Tawfik - Executive Vice President of Asset Management, at Dimah Capital.

3D printing could herald new industrial revolution GENEVA: As potentially game-changing as the steam engine or telegraph were in their day, 3D printing could herald a new industrial revolution, experts say. For the uninitiated, the prospect of printers turning out any object you want at the click of a button may seem like the stuff of science fiction. But 3D printing is already here, is developing fast, and looks set to leap from the labs and niche industries onto the wider market. “There are still limits imposed by the technology available today,” said Olivier Olmo, operational director of Switzerland’s EPFL research institution. “But I’m certain that within 10 or 20 years, we’ll have a kind of revolution in terms of the technology being available to everyone,” he said. The concept’s roots lie in fields ranging from standard two-dimensional printing to machine-tooling. First, a 3D digital design is created either from scratch on a computer or by scanning a real object, before being cut into two-dimensional “slices” which are computer-fed into a printer. The printer gradually deposits fine layers of material-such as plastic, carbon or metal-and builds a physical object. The product can be as hard or as flexible as you programme the printer to make it, and even include moving parts rather than being a solid block. “In theory, anything that we have today can be produced through 3D printing. It may just alter manufacturing as we know it,” said Simon Jones, a technology expert at global law firm DLA Piper. —AFP

NAIROBI: People wait for the bus near an advertisement for a new mobile telephone-based banking initiative called M-Shwari in the Kenyan capital. —AFP

From just a dollar, Kenya’s cellphone bank gives loans NAIROBI: Six months ago, Jane Adhiambo Achieng walked into a local Kenyan bank with the hope of getting a loan for her small grocery business. After providing all the paperwork and after weeks of back and forth between her and bank officials, she was turned down. “They just told me I don’t qualify. My income was too little,” said 42-year-old Achieng, who was asking for some $250 — about half her monthly turnoverto expand her fruit and vegetable stall in the Kenyan capital. But in early March, she applied for the same amount through a different source-and got the money in a matter of minutes. She credits the Kenyan mobile telephone money application called M-Shwari that lent her the cash for facilitating the growth of her business. M-Shwari is a new banking platform that allows subscribers of Kenya’s biggest mobile network, Safaricom, to operate savings accounts, earn interest on deposits, and borrow money using their mobile phones. It expands on Kenya’s revolutionary use of sending money by mobile phone-known as MPesa, “mobile money” in Swahili-launched in 2007 and now widely used across the east African nation, where some 70 percent of people have mobile phones. With a minimum transfer of cash set at five shillings-around five US cents-the application revolutionised day-to-day banking for millions left out of the formal system, and is used for transactions ranging from sending money to far-away relatives to paying utility bills or even school fees. Now it is hoped the new M-Shwari application-meaning “no hassle”-can do the same for savers and borrowers. “We have always been thinking of how to move M-Pesa forward. We knew there was a boundary to be broken and the next frontier was to be reached,” said Nzioka Muita, communications manager at Safaricom, which owns both the M-Pesa and M-Shwari systems. Banking opportunities for informal sector Through this platform, Safaricom says clients can open a bank account, move money in and out of their savings accounts, and access instant micro-credit of a minimum of 100 Kenyan shillings-slightly more than a dollar-at any time, all through the mobile phone application. While loans must be repaid within a month, a single fee of 7.5 percent is charged, a far lower interest rate than high-street banks. Maximum loans depend on how much clients have in their MShwari accounts. The mobile banking application has been so successful that on its first day of operations late last year, more than 70,000 new accounts were opened. “Up to this point in time, no one in the formal banking sector had thought of implementing such an idea,” said Tiberius Barasa, an economic expert with Kenya’s Institute of Policy

Research and Analysis. “I am sure that a few bank managers are looking at M-Shwari steadily to see if it is a potential threat to their business.” At least 12 million Kenyans remain outside the formal banking system, according to central bank estimates. Safaricom controls about 70 percent of the Kenya mobile-phone market, translating to some 19 million subscribers. Of those, some 15 million are already M-Pesa users, a customer base rivalling any banking institution. On its own, M-Pesa transactions account for more than $50 million (38 million euros) every day in Kenya. “This is a huge head start for the company,” Barasa said. M-Shwari was launched in partnership with one of Kenya’s privately owned banks, the Commercial Bank of Africa (CBA), a deal that could see it boost its slice of the banking sector of east Africa’s largest economy. The family of newly elected President Uhuru Kenyatta hold the major stake in CBA, which provides the banking infrastructure for M-Shwari. Currently, even with its slightly over $1 billion asset base, it is still some distance away from east Africa’s largest banks, such as Equity Bank, Cooperative Bank and the Kenya Commercial Bank. “In a matter of years, through the sheer volume of transactions that they will be handling on a daily basis, CBA may become a banking powerhouse in the region,” Barasa said. Policy analysts believe that the biggest winners from the MShwari service will be those in the market previously thought unbankable, due to its meagre savings and individuals located in remote, inaccessible parts of the country. “This will greatly change our lives. You can access credit from any part of the country,” Abbas Godana, a school teacher in Kenya’s remote eastern Tana River district, told AFP. “You do not have to travel for miles to your bank just to complete some paperwork and wait for the manager to approve the loan.” Godana’s village, Cha Mwana Muma, is some 30 kilometres (20 miles) from the nearest shopping centre in which his bank operates a branch-which, in the impoverished coastal area, where roads are virtually nonexistent, can take a whole day to travel. In February this year, three months after its launch, transactions on M-Shwari crossed the $35-million mark, with 1.6 million customers having used the service for deposits or loans. M-Shwari was not the first: telecommunications company Bharti Airtel, an Indian-owned firm, launched a similar product last year known as Kopa Chapaa-Swahili for “borrow money”-but the product has not had as much impact. Smaller micro-credit loan companies have also set up similar schemes. But “Safaricom has the numbers,” Barasa said. “All they need to do is ensure that whatever they come up with resonates with the majority of their subscribers.” —AFP

EXCHANGE RATES Commercial Bank of Kuwait US Dollar/KD GB Pound/KD Euro Swiss francs Canadian Dollar Australian DLR Indian rupees Sri Lanka Rupee UAE dirhams Bahraini dinars Jordanian dinar Saudi riyals Omani riyals Egyptian pounds US Dollar/KD GB Pound/KD Euro Swiss francs Canadian dollars Danish Kroner Swedish Kroner Australian dlr Hong Kong dlr Singapore dlr Japanese yen Indian Rs/KD Sri Lanka rupee Pakistan rupee Bangladesh taka UAE dirhams Bahraini dinars Jordanian dinar Saudi Riyal/KD Omani riyals Philippine Peso

.2770000 .4310000 .3680000 .3020000 .2780000 .2940000 .0040000 .0020000 .0771240 .7513970 .3930000 .0720000 .7366120 .0370000 CUSTOMER TRANSFER RATES .2841000 .4338920 .3707360 .3043390 .2795430 .0497330 .0443660 .2963730 .0365940 .2291130 .0029600 .0000000 .0000000 .0000000 .0000000 .0773800 .7538810 .0000000 .0757800 .7382100 .0000000

Al-Muzaini Exchange Co. Japanese Yen Indian Rupees Pakistani Rupees Srilankan Rupees Nepali Rupees Singapore Dollar Hongkong Dollar Bangladesh Taka Philippine Peso

ASIAN COUNTRIES 2.891 5.253 2.898 2.249 3.293 230.960 36.799 3.655 6.913

.2880000 .4470000 .3760000 .3170000 .2920000 .3020000 .0069000 .0035000 .0778990 .7589480 .4110000 .0770000 .7440150 .0440000 .2862000 .4370990 .3734770 .3065880 .2816100 .0501010 .0446940 .2985640 .0368650 .2308060 .0028810 .0052870 .0022880 .0029190 .0036810 .0779520 .7594530 .4048090 .0763400 .7436660 .0069870

Thai Baht Irani riyal - transfer Irani riyal - cash

Omani Riyal Qatari Riyal Saudi Riyal

9.939 0.271 0.273

ARAB COUNTRIES Egyptian Pound - Cash 40.900 Egyptian Pound - Transfer 40.827 Yemen Riyal/for 1000 1.333 Tunisian Dinar 178.840 Jordanian Dinar 403.620 Lebanese Lira/for 1000 1.917 Syrian Lier 3.105 Morocco Dirham 34.175 EUROPEAN & AMERICAN COUNTRIES US Dollar Transfer 285.700 Euro 372.550 Sterling Pound 436.410 Canadian dollar 279.000 Turkish lira 159.060 Swiss Franc 307.200 US Dollar Buying 284.500 GOLD 298.000 150.000

20 Gram 10 Gram

SELL DRAFT 297.58 284.80 304.50 374.85 284.85 444.60 2.98 3.669 5.245 2.245 3.289 2.897 77.62 758.45 40.69 405.80

Rate for Transfer US Dollar Canadian Dollar Sterling Pound Euro Swiss Frank Bahrain Dinar UAE Dirhams Qatari Riyals Saudi Riyals Jordanian Dinar Egyptian Pound Sri Lankan Rupees Indian Rupees Pakistani Rupees Bangladesh Taka Philippines Pesso Cyprus pound Japanese Yen Thai Bhat Syrian Pound Nepalese Rupees Malaysian Ringgit

Selling Rate 285.650 281.385 437.355 371.980 302.460 756.265 77.750 78.410 76.135 402.670 40.779 2.255 5.262 2.899 3.661 6.914 700.715 3.870 09.985 4.065 3.370 93.485

Bahrain Exchange Company COUNTRY

UAE Exchange Centre WLL COUNTRY Australian Dollar Canadian Dollar Swiss Franc Euro US Dollar Sterling Pound Japanese Yen Bangladesh Taka Indian Rupee Sri Lankan Rupee Nepali Rupee Pakistani Rupee UAE Dirhams Bahraini Dinar Egyptian Pound Jordanian Dinar

743.000 78.500 76.500

Dollarco Exchange Co. Ltd

GCC COUNTRIES 76.217 78.532 742.370 759.130 77.826

Saudi Riyal Qatari Riyal Omani Riyal Bahraini Dinar UAE Dirham

741.34 78.66 76.09

SELL CASH 295.500 281.000 307.000 375.500 286.000 439.000 3.300 3.760 5.450 2.440 3.400 2.980 78.300 757.850 41.000 410.000

British Pound Czech Korune Danish Krone Euro Norwegian Krone Scottish Pound Swedish Krona Swiss Franc Australian Dollar New Zealand Dollar Uganda Shilling Canadian Dollar Colombian Peso US Dollars Bangladesh Taka Cape Vrde Escudo Chinese Yuan Eritrea-Nakfa

SELL CASH Europe 0.4344195 0.0061667 0.0457815 0.3669405 0.0446752 0.4306675 0.0393409 0.2974429 Australasia 0.2834349 0.2340375 0.0001115 America 0.2732658 0.0001486 0.2831000 Asia 0.0036130 0.0031645 0.0450388 0.0164833

SELLDRAFT 0.4434195 0.0181667 0.0507815 0.3744405 0.0498752 0.4381675 0.0443409 0.3044429 0.2954349 0.2440375 0.0001115 0.2822658 0.0001666 0.2852500 0.0036680 0.0033945 0.0500388 0.0195833

Guinea Franc Hg Kong Dollar Indian Rupee Indonesian Rupiah Jamaican Dollars Japanese Yen Kenyan Shilling Malaysian Ringgit Nepalese Rupee Pakistan Rupee Philippine Peso Sierra Leone Singapore Dollar Sri Lankan Rupee Thai Baht Bahraini Dinar Egyptian Pound Ethiopeanbirr Ghanaian Cedi Iranian Riyal Iraqi Dinar Jordanian Dinar Kuwaiti Dinar Lebanese Pound Moroccan Dirhams Nigerian Naira Omani Riyal Qatar Riyal Saudi Riyal Sudanese Pounds Syrian Pound Tunisian Dinar UAE Dirhams Yemeni Riyal

0.0000443 0.0342064 0.0051874 0.0000244 0.0028500 0.00278258 0.0033525 0.0889769 0.0031389 0.0028712 0.0064648 0.0000729 0.2266602 0.0022066 0.0093584 Arab 0.7502049 0.0386786 0.0129041 0.1484851 0.0000793 0.0001735 0.3967581 1.0000000 0.0001750 0.0219045 0.0012127 0.7298987 0.0776958 0.0755333 0.0479627 0.0031830 0.1760881 0.0762357 0.0012869

Al Mulla Exchange Currency US Dollar Euro Pound Sterling Canadian Dollar Japanese Yen Indian Rupee Egyptian Pound Sri Lankan Rupee Bangladesh Taka Philippines Peso Pakistan Rupee Bahraini Dinar UAE Dirham Saudi Riyal *Rates are subject to change

Transfer Rate (Per 1000) 285.300 373.700 437.400 280.150 2.905 5.250 40.810 2.250 3.655 6.915 2.898 759.700 77.750 76.250

0.0000503 0.0373064 0.0052514 0.0000295 0.0038500 0.0030056 0.0035825 0.0959769 0.0033389 0.0029112 0.0069348 0.0000759 0.2326602 0.0022486 0.0099584 0.7587049 0.0407086 0.0194041 0.1502751 0.0000798 0.0002335 0.4042581 1.0000000 0.0001950 0.0459045 0.0018477 0.7408987 0.0784788 O.0761733 0.0485127 0.0034030 0.1820881 0.0776857 0.0013869

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Global growth concerns amid weak economic data NBK WEEKLY MONEY MARKET REPORT KUWAIT: Investors have been lacking direction this week with the recent weakness that is developing in China, the ongoing recession in the Euro Zone and the unknown effect of the sequester in the US. In the US, William Dudley, president of Federal Reserve Bank of New York and vice-chairman of the Federal Open Market Committee , said in a conference on transatlantic economic interdependence that Europe’s economic outlook “seems less bright” and support for fiscal and structural changes could further erode if growth does not “resume relatively soon.” He also reiterated his support for the US central bank’s aggressive asset-purchase program, saying the efficacy of quantitative easing has been “as high as or higher than” he originally expected and the costs have been “the same or lower.” The dollar was stuck in a tight trading range this week against the majors as the recent US economic data indicated a slowdown in the economic recovery especially after weaker than expected GDP data. The euro had a lackluster performance last week, trading in a tight range between a high of 1.3093 and a low 1.2954. The currency’s recent weakness was supported by worse than expected economic indicators in Germany and worse than expected unemployment data in Spain, adding to signs that the European central bank might cut interest rates soon. The pound started the week at 1.5196 only to regain some moment after better than expected GDP data indicating that the UK economy avoided a triple-dip recession. Cable closed the week at 1.5480. The Japanese Yen continued to find resistance at the psychological 100 level, in spite of the BoJ’s continued support for the ongoing monetary easing program. On the Commodity side gold maintained its ongoing recovery reaching as high as 1,485.21 before settling down and closing for the week at 1,456.91 US new home sales Sales of new US homes improved in March as near record-low mortgage rates helped the industry complete the strongest quarter since the financial crisis started in 2008, indicating the housing market recovery remains on track. The Commerce Department said last week that new home sales increased 1.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 417,000 units. Last month’s rise followed a 7.6 percentt drop in February. New Home Sales year on year were up were up 18.5 percent, signifying that the latest strength in the housing market that helped boost the economy was still on course. US durable orders drop Durable goods orders dropped 5.7 percent as demand for commercial aircraft and business investment cooled, the Commerce Department said last week. The drop in orders for these goods followed a revised 4.3 percent gain in the prior

month. The drop, which was larger than what economists had expected, provided a fresh indication of cooling at factories. Jobless claims show labor market recovery still intact The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits fell last week by 16,000, signaling a slight improvement in the labor market despite recent slower growth .The initial claims benefits dropped to a seasonally adjusted 339,000 and the one-month moving average for new claims, a less volatile measure of labor market trends, fell 4,500 to 357,500. Advanced GDP quarter The economy in the US grew less than analyst forecast in the three months of 2013 , as a drop in defense spending outweighed the biggest increase in consumer spending in two years. Gross domestic product rose at a 2.5 percent annual rate, after a 0.4 percent 4th quarter advance. The recent weaker than expected GDP data would most likely give the Federal Reserve more reason to stick with its ongoing monetary easy program. Europe Spain’s record unemployment Unemployment in Spain’s Europe’s fourth biggest economy rose more than expected in the first quarter to its highest level since the 1970’s. The unemployment jumped to a record 27.2 percent and the number of jobless increased to more than 6 million for the first time fuelling a European debate over whether to stop austerity policies and switch to reviving economic growth. Prime Minister Mariano has imposed drastic spending cuts and tax increases last year, trying to bring a huge budget deficit under control, in line with the Euro zone’s policy of fighting its debt crisis with austerity. German flash manufacturing PMI Germanys Purchasing Managers’ Index a measuring growth in both services and manufacturing, which together account for more than 70 percent of the total economy performance. The PMI fell to 48.8 in April from 50.6 the previous month. This is the First time the index’s fall below the 50 mark, a sign that the economy is likely to contract. German Ifo business climate German business sentiment fell in April for the second consecutive month, after winter weather delayed the recovery in Europe’s largest economy. The Munich-based Ifo think tank said last week its business climate index, based on a monthly survey of some 7,000 executives, fell to 104.4 from 106.7 in March, raising the risk that the economy fell into a recession in the first quarter, adding to signs that the European

Malaysian populist windfall fuels debt fears KUALA LUMPUR: It has never been more lucrative to be a voter in Malaysia, where political rivals are showering the public with cash in a desperate electoral battle, stoking concerns over rising national debt. With May 5 elections expected to be Malaysia’s closest ever, the long-ruling coalition has given billions of dollars in new cash, pay rises and other handouts to civil servants, the poor, elderly, farmers and students. The opposition, which holds four of 13 states, has likewise made a range of state-level payouts, and promises still more perks if it wins federal power for the first time in Malaysia’s 56 years of independence. The bidding war began shortly after the opposition stung the Barisan Nasional (National Front) coalition in 2008 elections, but has spiralled of late. “It’s been a windfall for Malaysians these past five years,” said Francis Loh, president of Malaysian democratic rights group Aliran. The bonanza has seemed farcical at times. Barisan recently denounced opposition campaign pledges as a blueprint for insolvency. But Prime Minister Najib Razak promptly upped the ante with billions in new promises of his own-sparking opposition outrage that he copied their ideas. The unprecedented giveaways attest to the high stakes of an election in which a ruling elite is desperate to retain power and its rich perks, while the opposition fights to make the most of its best shot yet at governing. But warnings are emerging that Malaysia-which already has Southeast Asia’s highest debt-to-GDP ratio, after Singapore-is at best endangering a goal to become a “developed nation” by 2020 and at worst courting disaster. “Today’s politicians are bent on planting the seeds of an economic crisis for our children to inherit,” said Wan Saiful Wan Jan, who runs the IDEAS think-tank. If Malaysia meets financial catastrophe in the future, “economic historians may well trace back the root cause to this general election,” he added. Few analysts see an immediate threat of disaster, noting the situation can be managed if some hard post-election political choices are made. But some say muchneeded development spending could shrink further if increasingly hard-fought

politics continue to trump economic planning in a country where populist subsidies have come to be expected by many voters. Such spending fell from 28 percent of the 2010 budget to 20 percent this year. “There is a concern if populist spending were to get in the way of infrastructure spending which will have longer-term repercussions on the economy,” said Gundy Cahyadi, a Singapore-based economist with OCBC bank. Under Barisan, resource-rich Malaysia developed into a regional economic success, enjoying decades of growth, foreign investment inflows, and rising living standards. But lower-cost rivals China, Indonesia and others have forced a refocusing on high-tech manufacturing and services even as critics say Malaysia’s education system is failing to prepare graduates for a move up the value chain. Economic growth was a solid 5.6 percent last year, but much of that is credited to election-minded deficit spending. Debt has doubled since 2007 to 53.7 percent of GDP. In emailed comments to AFP, Najib said “our debt will never exceed 55 percent of GDP,” but critics note “hidden” public debt such as state-guaranteed loans may have doubled since he took power in 2009. Malaysia politics analyst Bridget Welsh estimates that since taking office Najib has given out $19 billion in public funds — $1,400 per voter-for “political spending” that benefits Barisan. That is “the most ever in the lead-up to Malaysian polls” said Welsh, of Singapore Management University. In campaign stops, Najib regularly references the largesse, telling voters to pay back it at the ballot box. “If he wins, it will become a crutch politicians rely on, an extension of money politics,” she said. Moves by the opposition Pakatan Rakyat (People’s Pact) alliance include a water subsidy in a key state won in 2008 that has drained 20 percent from the state’s operating budget. Cash payments in Pakatan states also have grown. If it wins federal power, it promises to make university education free, scrap various taxes and fees, and raise subsidies, moves it says will cost $15 billion per year. Barisan counters that they will cost $65 billion, or 80 percent of today’s federal budget. —AFP

Central Bank Might cut interest rates. United Kingdom UK averts a triple dip recession Britain’s economy avoided a triple- dip recession in the first quarter by growing faster than expected in the first three months of the year. The Office for National Statistics said that Britain’s gross domestic product rose 0.3 percent in the first quarter, above forecasts for a 0.1 percent rise. Finance Minister George Osborne has said, “The GDP figures are an encouraging sign the economy is healing, despite a tough economic backdrop, we are making progress. The deficit is down by a third, businesses have created over a million and a quarter new jobs, and interest rates are at record lows .We can say, now, that plans for a modest recovery in 2013 remain on track. But no sign, yet, that we are about to race ahead. “ Japan Current account surplus Japan’s core consumer price index fell excluding fresh food fell at its faster pace in March; the CPI dropped 0.5 percent marking the biggest decline in two years, suggesting the Bank of Japan faces a difficult task to achieve its 2 percent inflation target. The data was no surprise for the bank of Japan, which this month said the prices would continue to drop for the time being even after unveiling a plan of unprecedented easing .looking forward the Bank of Japan easing program would push up property prices and is likely to lead to higher rent, which is a key consumer price driver. Bank of Japan’s monetary statement At the Monetary Policy Meeting held on last week the Policy Board of the BOJ decided, by a unanimous vote, to set the following guideline for money market operations for the intermeeting period, they will conduct money market operations so that the monetary base will increase at an annual pace of about 60-70 trillion yen. China HSBC purchasing managers’ index China’s vast manufacturing sector expanded at a moderate pace this month due to weakness in global and domestic demand, fueling concern that the world’s second-largest economy might face difficult times heading into the second quarter. The flash HSBC Purchasing Managers’ Index for April dropped to 50.5 in April from 51.6 in March but was still stronger than February’s reading of 50.4. Still the PMI has been above the 50-point level since November 2012 indicating that China still has growth, however the failure to break above 53 indicates that the economic expansion at moderate pace. The KD opened at 0.28460 yesterday morning.

Amr Eid joins GBI as CCO KUWAIT: Amr Eid has joined Gulf Bridge International(GBI), operator of the Middle East’s highest capacity fiber optic network,as Chief Commercial Officer. Eid has over 20 years of experience in the technology and telecommunicationsindustries having worked for companies such as BT Global Services, HP, and Raya. Prior to joining GBI, Eid served as Vice President of PCCW Global (Hong Kong Telecom) out of their Dubai office. “Eid’s experience and capability will be true assets as GBI continues to grow our customer base, already becoming amongst the largest and most diverse in the region,” said Ahmed Mekky, Board Member and CEO of GBI. “As we look globally, continuing to grow our network past Amr Eid Europe and India, his position will prove to be integral to our expanding operations.” “I am honored that GBI has placed their trust in my ability to take GBI commercial operations to new horizons,” commented Amr Eid. “With a great team and a record of achievements, GBI is on a fast track to meeting significant revenue targets supported by a solid sales pipeline, cutting edge technology, and a network that offers unmatched diversity in the region. I am keen to continue GBI’s work in driving our sale revenues, targeting further strategic partnerships, creatingvalue added services to increase depth and breadth of our service offering, and above all, develop close relationships with our partners and customers”. Eid has an impressive industry track record having won many recognitions and awards regionally and internationally over the span of his successful career.

Lexus celebrates international design community in NYC NEW YORK: In its ongoing pursuit of innovation, Lexus is pushing the boundaries of technology, craftsmanship and design. This dedication to design was celebrated at an event hosted by global President, Akio Toyoda recently in New York City. The event, called “Design Matters,” showcased Lexus’ commitment to design, both in its new products and in its global brand activities to an audience of established and aspiring members of the design community. Kristin Chenoweth served as mistress of ceremonies with The Roots and Quest love providing musical entertainment. Much of the focus on design for Lexus comes from the personal commitment of Akio Toyoda, grandson of the founder of Toyota. “I am very passionate about cars, and especially design,” said Toyoda. “To me, cars need to ignite all your senses, and one of the most important is the emotional connection you get when you see a beautiful car.” Nobuyuki Negishi, Chief Representative of Middle East & North Africa Representative Office, Toyota Motor Corporation said,” The aesthetic elegance of Lexus vehicles which comes from our deep commitment to world class design has made a significant impact on our customers and had made Lexus a leader in the luxury segment across the Middle East. The Lexus association with international design will now resonate around the world through our various initiatives and will further strengthen the Lexus brand.” This dedication to design is evident in concept vehicles from Lexus, including the award-wining LF-LC hybrid 2+2 coupe concept and the LF-CC concept car. It is also reflected in new production models such as the stunning all-new IS sports sedan. The IS, and other recently introduced vehicles, incorporate Lexus’ new design language that includes smooth, flowing lines, unique head and tail lamps, and a distinctive spindle grille. Beyond its products, Lexus is supporting international design through a variety of initiatives around the globe: INTERSECT BY LEXUS and CRAFTED FOR LEXUS INTERSECT BY LEXUS will be a unique space in select global cities where people can experience Lexus without getting behind a steering wheel. Neither a dealership, nor a traditional retail space, guests will be able to engage with Lexus through design, art, fashion, culture, movies, music and technology. The space will be developed by Masamichi Katayama, the worldrenowned interior designer and founder of the interior design firm Wonderwall. The first INTERSECT BY

LEXUS will open in Aoyama, Tokyo, in the summer of 2013, followed by locations in New York City and Dubai. Within the space, Lexus will display exclusive retail items CRAFTED FOR LEXUS. Lexus commissioned Japanese artists to create unique pieces that are inspired by the brand’s philosophy: traditional craftsmanship with timeless beauty and innovative form and function. BEYOND BY LEXUS A new lifestyle magazine, BEYOND BY LEXUS, will feature Lexus vehicle information as well as stories on travel, architecture, art and design from a global and regional perspective. The magazine will be published two times yearly and translated into numerous languages around the world. The magazine recently debuted and will be available on the global website from May 1. LEXUS DESIGN AWARD The LEXUS DESIGN AWARD is a competition to inspire the next generation of designers, by having them demonstrate their creativity and be recognized for their accomplishments. This prestigious award was announced in Tokyo with the top two winners earning the opportunity to work with mentors Sam Hecht and Junya Ishigami. Their works were displayed at Museo della Permanente in Milan, Italy, during Milan Design Week. LEXUS SHORT FILMS Lexus collaborated with The Weinstein Company to support emerging directors from around the globe, commissioning them to bring five wonderful stories to life as short films. The stories are beautifully told and explore the theme that “Life is Amazing.” They will debut at various film events around the world and will be featured on the Lexus global website later this year. Lexus and The Weinstein Company will hold the world premiere event at the 2013 Festival de Cannes in May. LEXUS BRAND CAMPAIGN On May 1, Lexus will launch a global advertising campaign with the theme “Amazing in Motion.” Featured in the campaign are spectacular larger-than-life human figures. High-technology 3-D printing was combined with fine craftsmanship to create the figures. Lexus materials, including bamboo and walnut found in the interiors of Lexus cars, as well as Lexus exterior paint, were used to construct the figures. Thanks to advanced technology and smooth artistry of puppeteers, the figures come to life on a grand scale.

Europe austerity debate to test periphery political will DUBLIN: Readers of Ireland’s largest-selling daily newspaper were confronted by an unexpected front page headline this week when the Irish Independent proclaimed the ‘End Of Austerity’. In a country that began cutting spending and hiking taxes almost five years ago, well before the scale of the euro-zone’s debt crisis was evident, weary Irish voters have more interest than most in the fresh debate over Europe’s cornerstone policy. But as European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso put the austerity question back on the agenda by suggesting it had reached its natural limit of popular support, data showed that in Europe, only Greece has a higher underlying budget deficit. While better than was assumed under its EU/IMF bailout, Ireland’s deficit of 7.6 percent of annual output nevertheless points to more tough budgets and soul searching in Brussels may simply make it harder for politicians to push cuts through. “It’s a dangerous game,” said Donal Sheridan, a uni-

versity lecturer, after reading the Independent’s eye-catching headline at a newsstand on Dublin’s main thoroughfare, O’Connell Street. “If you’re going to do something significant, fair enough, give people the indication so they can look forward to it. But if you’re not, you’re just building up expectations and people will be even more disappointed when the budget comes.” Barroso’s comments, echoed by the IMF but resisted by the European Central Bank, come at a tricky time for the Irish government as it tries to revive a failed plan to cut public pay while keeping the kind of industrial peace that has marked it apart from other euro zone strugglers. The deal, aimed at saving 1 billion euros between now and 2015, was rejected by public servants last week and trade union leaders have been emboldened by the increasing calls to throttle back on debt-cutting drives. The government’s usual reaction-blaming the demands of its international lenders, the European Commission, the International

Monetary Fund the European Central Bank-has suddenly become less convincing. “Europe running headless” It is not just in Dublin that political will is set to be tested in the coming months. In Madrid, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy laid out a package of reforms on Friday that he hopes will win him some breathing space from Europe. Yet to trim a deficit almost as large as Ireland’s, he must make temporary tax hikes and wage cuts permanent, finish a long-overdue reform of the public pension system and oversee a total overhaul of public administration. Each will be a tough political ask on their own when more than one in four Spaniards are unable to find work. In Portugal too, wider calls for a row back on austerity come with Lisbon under more pressure than at any point in its twoyear bailout to rush through spending cuts and cut a deficit that rose sharply to 6.4 percent of GDP last year. —Reuters

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


US air traffic system at full operation NEW YORK: The Federal Aviation Administration said that the US air traffic system resumed normal operations yesterday evening after lawmakers rushed a bill through Congress allowing the agency to withdraw furloughs of air traffic controllers and other workers. The FAA said Saturday that it has suspended all employee furloughs and that traffic facilities will begin returning to regular staffing levels over the next 24 hours. The furloughs were fallout from the $85 billion in automaticacross-the-board spending cuts this spring. The furloughs started to hit air traffic controllers this past week, causing flight delays that left thousands of travelers frustrated and furious. Planes were forced to take off and land less frequently, so as not to overload the remaining controllers on duty. The FAA had no choice but to cut $637 million as its share of $85 billion in automatic, government-wide spending cuts that must be achieved by the end of the federal budget

year on Sept 30. Flight delays piled up across the country as the FAA kept planes on the ground because there weren’t enough controllers to monitor busy air corridors. Cascading delays held up flights at some of nation’s busiest airports, including New York, Baltimore and Washington. Delta Air Lines canceled about 90 flights Monday because of worries about delays. Just about every passenger was rebooked on another Delta flight

within a couple of hours. Air travel was smoother Tuesday. Things could have been worse. A lot of people who had planned to fly this week changed their plans when they heard that air travel might be difficult, according to longtime aviation consultant Daniel Kasper of Compass Lexicon. “Essentially what happened from an airline’s perspective is that people who were going to travel didn’t travel,”

SEATTLE: This photo shows a United Airlines jet departing in view of the air traffic control tower at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in Seattle. — AP

he said. But canceled flights likely led to lost revenue for airlines. Even if they didn’t have to incur some of costs of fueling up planes and getting them off the ground, crews that were already scheduled to work still had to paid. “One week isn’t going to kill them, but had it gone on much longer, it would have been a significant hit on their revenues and profits,” Kasper said. The challenges this week probably cost airlines less than disruptions from a typical winter storm, said John F Thomas, an aviation consultant with LEK Consulting. “I think the fact that it got resolved this week has minimized the cost as it was more the inconvenience factor,” Thomas said. The budget cuts at the FAA were required under a law enacted two years ago as the government was approaching its debt limit. Democrats were in favor of raising the debt limit without strings attached so as not to provoke an economic crisis, but Republicans insisted on substantial cuts in exchange. The

compromise was to require that every government “program, project and activity” - with some exceptions, like Medicare - be cut equally. The FAA had reduced the work schedules of nearly all of its 47,000 employees by one day every two weeks, including 15,000 air traffic controllers, as well as thousands of air traffic supervisors, managers and technicians who keep airport towers and radar facility equipment working. That amounted to a 10 percent cut in hours and pay. Republicans accused the Obama administration of forcing the furloughs to raise public pressure on Congress to roll back the budget cuts. Critics of the FAA insist the agency could have reduce its budget in other ways that would not have inconvenience travelers including diverting money from other accounts, such as those devoted to research, commercial space transportation and modernization of the air traffic control computers. —AP

AXA unveils growth plans KUWAIT: Henri de Castries, Chairman and CEO of AXA Group - worldwide leader in insurance and asset management serving 102 million clients globally, yesterday announced plans to accelerate AXA Gulf growth in the Region. The plans were unveiled during the one-day visit of de Castries to the UAE. The visit followed a two day-long visit to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Bahrain. The visit of de Castries to the region comes amidst AXA delivering robust financial results in 2012. The group recorded revenues worth euro 90.1 billion and underlying earnings amounting to euro 4.3 billion in 2012, and had euro 1,116 billion assets under management. In the past decades, AXA Group has built one of the largest insurers worldwide and is the number one global insurance brand for the fourth consecutive year. De Castries comes in the region as AXA Group reinforces its focus on high growth markets to build on its market leadership. Globally, AXA Group has already invested Euro 4 billion in new markets through acquisitions and partnerships in the past years and the company has already reinforced its presence in 19 countries in the last three years. Talking about the visit, de Castries said: “We have grown from strength to strength every year in the GCC, which remains one of our key growth markets. The region still records low insurance penetration levels, risk awareness of the population is increasing thus there are growing insurance needs to address. The insurance market in the region has a great future and we are committed to work with the regulatory bodies, partners and teams here, who have made our success possible. We aim to support the current business model here by leveraging AXA Group’s strengths and expertise.” During the year, AXA maintained its growth and profitability across the globe with a strong focus on delivering its strategic plan “Ambition AXA” by being more selective and by shifting its new business towards more profitable segments that address evolving customer needs. AXA in the Gulf also recorded strong financials with a growth of more than 20 percent of its premiums reaching $626 million with a contribution of all its five countries in the GCC. AXA over the last years has built the leading

non-life international insurer in the GCC. In few years, AXA Gulf has grown from a small team of 150 employees to over 800 employees across the GCC, servicing in excess of 500,000 clients. De Castries also inaugurated the new AXA shop at Dubai Mall during the visit. The shop, situated at Lower Ground level and close to Waitrose, is aimed at offering a strategic and accessible location to boost AXA customer convenience and is part of its mandate to extend world-class service backed by unique insurance solutions. He added: “This region plays a pivotal role in our future expansion plans. The needs for insurance and risk management are ever increasing. Our objective in the region is to become the preferred insurance company for customers, distributors, employees and shareholders and ensure that AXA Gulf is fully aligned with the market needs.” Jerome Droesch, AXA Gulf CEO, said: “We are well positioned to make the difference in the Gulf. We have continued to relentlessly pursue efficiencies and product innovations to extend competitive advantage and value for policyholders in the evolving market environment. Across the five countries in the Gulf where we have presence, we report a very high customer satisfaction over 80 percent and I think the best proof of our success is our recent recognitions received at the MENA Awards - General Insurer of the Year and Personal Lines Insurer and the Banker Middle East Awards - Best SME Healthcare Insurance Product.” He added: “We are committed to accelerate our growth in the region by engaging and building the capacities of nationals in the insurance sector. We are looking at aggressive expansion of our multi access model and notably our AXA Shops - we now have 16 shops in the region and planning to open more than 10 in 2013. Our success is mainly attributed to our efforts to delight our customers by surpassing expectations and we are very grateful to our clients, partners and shareholders for their trust” As one of the leading names in the UAE and regional insurance sector, AXA Insurance Gulf products are tailored across all sections - corporates, SMEs, individuals and families.

Nordstrom shoots for youthful, affordable


or young women in a wired world, a mobile device is as much a fashion statement as the clothes they wear. Even if money’s tight, many will find room in their budgets for a smartphone and tablet and make the most of old clothes. That’s a challenge for Nordstrom, which now hopes to attract 20- and 30-somethings with more trendy, moderately priced clothing that better suits their spending habits. Nordstrom’s nearly 120 full-scale stores nationwide have revamped their “Savvy” clothing departments to give off an affordable, ready-for-the-weekend vibe. At the downtown Seattle Nordstrom, bright displays call out women’s tops for $36 and boyfriend-style jackets for $78. Scattered throughout are $18 woven-leather bracelets and earring-and-necklace sets for less than $40. The makeover builds on Nordstrom’s move last year to sell edgy, cheaper clothes from British chain Topshop, signaling a desire to go down-market to accommodate smaller budgets. “One of the things that we heard from our customers for a number of years is, ‘Boy, the stuff we love, we can’t afford, and the stuff we can afford, we don’t like too much,’ “ Nordstrom Chief Financial Officer Mike Koppel said at a recent investors conference. “We felt that we had an opportunity to have better product that was more accessible,” he said. Seattle-based Nordstrom’s Savvy department now carries newcomers such as MinkPink, a vintage-inspired label also found at Urban Outfitters, as well as BlankNYC, which sells “spray-on” skinny jeans and studded ripped shorts for $98. High-end labels like Robert Rodriguez and Haute Hippie have moved to other departments, bringing Savvy’s average price down to about $50

from more than $150. “It’s nice that they’re offering low prices,” said Tiia Lustig, 24, who eyed short, flowy skirts for $48 at the downtown Nordstrom last week. “It’s not just Chanel and Gucci.” The new Savvy department also tears a page from the fast-fashion playbook, changing up its merchandise almost daily to get customers coming back more frequently. “This is newness at a faster rate,” said Tricia Smith, general merchandise manager of women’s apparel at Nordstrom. “The product comes in at twice the rate of other departments, and we’re able to react more quickly.” But what if the changes turn off well-heeled customers who see Nordstrom as their go-to place for luxury classics? Some say that’s both an unlikely risk and one worth taking anyway. Last May, retail analyst Jennifer Black warned of a void between Nordstrom’s teenclothing section and various women’s departments. “There are no in-between younger brands once she graduates from Brass Plum,” Black wrote in a research note to clients. “Savvy, TBD and Individualist are too expensive, and the other departments are too old, in our opinion.” Black now gives Nordstrom strong marks for its Savvy shake-up. “They’ve kept some of the older brands and brought in these other brands that are what I’d consider great fashion at attainable prices,” she said. “It’s really edgy, and you can afford it, and it just seems like it’s gaining traction.” Since the recession, Nordstrom and other department-store stalwarts have had to get creative as global rivals H&M and Zara bring runway trends to the malls faster and cheaper. At the same time, young women are stretching their budgets across an ever broader set of products.— MCT

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Japan puts aside Russia row for sake of economy ‘Economic diplomacy’ priority for reviving sluggish economy

KIA Motors launches 3 innovative new models KUWAIT: National Agencies Group, the authorized distributor for KIA cars in Kuwait, unveiled a trio of new KIA models at the KIA Showroom in Al-Rai on April 23, 2013 in the presence of Kim, Kyung-Sik, the Ambassador of South Korea to Kuwait, M Y Chung, President of KIA Regional HQ for the Middle East & Africa, VIP Guests from Business Partner Companies, banks and members of the media. The three models; the face-lifted KIA Cadenza 2014 near-luxury family sedan, the all-new Carens family multipurpose utility vehicle and the all-new Cerato compact sedan represent the ongoing evolution of KIA’s DNA and promise to further enhance KIA’s standing in those segments. “It is my pleasure to be here tonight as we proudly introduce three outstanding fully renovated KIA models, each representing a unique symbol of KIA’s innovation. We expect them to bolster KIA’s burgeoning success in their respective segments,” explained M Y Chung, President of KIA’s Regional HQ for the Middle East & Africa. The all-new Cerato The third generation Cerato boasts sleeker styling with ‘dynamic muscularity’ in a design that is longer, lower and wider than the previous model, with an extended wheelbase. It also features an all-new body shell, upgraded equipment, a host of additional convenience and safety features, a more spacious cabin with enhanced quality and improved refinement that delivers class-leading performance. Impressive features include LED lights, ventilated driver’s seat, rear AC, Electronic Stability Control, Hill-start Assist Control and Vehicle Stability Management. The all-new Carens A multipurpose utility vehicle that

promises to be the world’s most stylish family car, the new Carens is designed and engineered to meet the needs of modern, dynamic families. Built on an all-new platform, it delivers stylish, spacious practicality, with sleek aerodynamics, a cab-forward design and a long wheelbase. The Carens features a panoramic sunroof and seats up to seven people. Furthermore, safety was the foremost concern while designing the vehicle. It comes with many features that enhance stability, control or otherwise provide for a safer driving experience. The face-lifted Cadenza Billed as the world’s most technologically-advanced KIA, the upgraded Cadenza moves the KIA brand further up market by offering customers an impressive list of standard and optional equipment. Onlookers will notice its new grille design and exterior changes which enhance its sleek persona. Its features include Blind Spot Detection, Smart Cruise Control and Adaptive Front Lighting System which automatically adjusts the headlights to move with the road.

Warba Bank offers airport lounge access to ATM card holders KUWAIT: Warba Bank announced yesterday an exclusive offer to customers of Safwa and Lamar segments. Warba offers all Safwa and Lamar cardholders a range of exclusive services and benefits that supports their elegant lifestyle, especially access to international luxury lounges, in association with the renowned Veloce Louanges. Safwa & Lamar ATM cardholders will be entitled to numerous exclusive benefits plus a diversified and unprecedented myriad of elegant privileges and personal services that suit their needs. Through the new feature, Safwa & Lamar ATM cardholders will avail access to over 70 VIP luxurious lounges at the most favored destinations worldwide. They will be able to enjoy comfort and luxury in addition to a group of unique services provided by such lounges to travelers. Lounges covered by the offer include Marhaba Lounge at the new (Concourse - C) at Dubai International Airport. It is important to note that Warba Bank is the first and only Kuwaiti bank to provide these premium services to Safwa & Lamar ATM cardholders. To avail such privilege, customers can simply show up at the lounge receptions and show their Safwa or Lamar cards. In his comment, Cards Department Manager at Warba Bank, Talal Abdullah Al Arbeed said: “Warba Bank cards stand for their quality and distinctive contemporary design in addition to their security characteristics that comply with the highest international standards. Our cards

Talal Abdullah Al-Arbeed are also known for their competitive local market fee. In addition, Warba offers this new feature with a view to provide customers with excellent privileges that suit their lifestyle.” Irrespective of the airline or the ticket class, the new premium service offered by Warba Bank enables Safwa cardholders to access 70 airport lounges, and Lamar cardholders to access over 20 airport lounges around the world. Safawa and Lamar segments form part of the five segments offered by the bank, enabling customers to transfer their salaries to their Warba accounts, in addition to receiving multi-purpose ATM cards for cash withdrawal and payment for purchases through various POS (Point-of-Sale) terminals, both locally and internationally.

TOKYO: Japan’s relations with Russia are taking a decidedly business-like turn, as the countries put economic imperatives ahead of a longstanding territorial dispute. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe heads this weekend to Moscow on the first leg of an “economic diplomacy” tour to Russia, Turkey and the Middle East aimed at building business ties and possibly reaching a breakthrough with Moscow. Japan and Russia have yet to sign a peace treaty formally ending hostilities from World War II thanks to a group of four islands north of Hokkaido that were captured by Russian forces at the war’s end. Yet, the legacy of antagonism over the islands was utterly absent from a forum of businessmen gathered this week in one of Tokyo’s poshest hotels to drum up Japanese investments in the Russia’s Far East island of Sakhalin. The discussions of huge energy projects planned or already built suggest that economic prerogatives are overriding other concerns as both sides focus on their mutual interest in boosting trade and investment. With rival China also pursuing closer energy cooperation, Japan has more incentive than ever to put historical roadblocks aside and get down to business. Abe said recently he will seek to resume stalled talks on the territorial dispute when he meets Russian President Vladimir Putin, the first official visit by a Japanese prime minister to Moscow in a decade. He told parliament said he hoped to build “new momentum” and set a future course for relations during his visit.

He will also visit Turkey, where Japan is hoping to seal a deal to export nuclear technology, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. An actual deal on what the Japanese call the “Northern Territories” during Abe’s visit is unlikely during this visit to Moscow, said Kazuhiko Togo, a former senior diplomat who heads the Institute for World Affairs at Kyoto Sangyo University. However, the meeting will be “extremely important,” he said. “Putin and Abe would gauge each other whether this is a counterpart trustworthy enough to make crucial and extremely difficult decisions together. If they succeed, then the future of our relationship would be in good hands. If not, then it would not be promising.” Former Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori, who often acts as a senior statesman on Tokyo’s behalf, visited Moscow in February. He says he is hoping the leaders will agree on building a new relationship and meeting more often. At issue is Japan’s longtime insistence that it must get back all disputed islands Etorofu, Kunashiri, Shikotan and the Habomai islets, Mori told the Englishlanguage newspaper The Japan Times. A compromise is needed, Mori said. “If the stance is ‘absolutely four islands’ should be returned, the current stalemate will just continue,” the paper quoted Mori as saying. Japan needs to respond to Moscow’s overtures reasonably soon, Togo said. “In my experience, if the Japanese government doesn’t react within a year the window will close,” he said.

Since taking office in late December, Abe has sought to highlight Tokyo’s interest in building closer ties with Southeast Asia to help drive economic growth and offset the fallout from tensions with Beijing over a territorial dispute in the East China Sea. He says “economic diplomacy” is a priority for reviving the sluggish economy. After Russia, he is due to visit Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Turkey, where negotiations are underway for a major nuclear power technology deal, officials say. Russia’s Far East is keen to attract more Japanese investment in its energy sector and in construction of the infrastructure it needs for closer trade ties with the rest of the AsiaPacific region. Resource-scarce Japan, likewise, is an eager customer for Russian natural gas, coal, timber and other natural resources. “From the 1990s, Japan has been providing significant support to Russia’s energy sector,” Takashi Nishioka, president of the Association for Trade with Russia and the Newly Independent States, said in an address to the forum in Tokyo on Wednesday. “Prime Minister Abe’s visit to Moscow will pave the way for greater Japan-Russia economic cooperation,” he said. Japan, the world’s biggest consumer of natural gas, imports 39 percent of the liquefied natural gas from Sakhalin I, a huge, multinational project between Russia’s Rosneft, Japan’s Sodeco, ExxonMobil and other major partners that pooled resources to exploit the reserves found off the island’s coast in the 1970s and 1980s.The clo-

sure of most of Japan’s nuclear power plants following the disaster in Fukushima has boosted demand for LNG and other conventional fuels. In 2012, imports by Tokyo Electric Power Co., or TEPCO, from Sakhalin rose to 3 million tons a year from the 2 million it had been importing since 2009. “The Sakhalin project will be of even greater importance as an energy source in the future,” said Hitoshi Nishizawa of Tokyo Electric Co.’s Fuel and Power Company, Japan’s biggest power utility. The sensitive environment, harsh northern climate and volatile seismic of the region, which lies right along the “Ring of Fire” call for special technology and equipment from global suppliers, he said, noting that Japan is supplying pipes used for the project. The Sakhalin project is creating “a whole range of business opportunities for the region,” said James Taylor, president of Exxon Neftegas Ltd. Apart from oil and gas, participants outlined plans to expand port facilities to accommodate huge postPanamax freighters and very large tankers and to build rail links between Sakhalin and the Eurasian mainland and with Japan and between and the Russian Far East and North America, via the Bering Strait. Japan has equipment and technology well suited for power grids in the Russian Far East that might connect to Hokkaido, said Sergey N. Tolstoguzov, president of RAO Energeticheskiye sistemy Vostoka OAO, a Russian power company. “It is a good match for cooperation,” he said. —AP

Whole Foods pushes forward on product-labeling initiatives AUSTIN: In the past few years, Whole Foods Market has gotten much stricter about where its products come from. The natural foods grocer has rolled out a series of standards regarding animal welfare, seafood sustainability and genetically modified ingredients - to name a few - that is unprecedented in scope for a major food retailer. Whole Foods officials say they’re staying true to their core values, while also reacting to changing times and concerns from their customers. “I would represent these latest efforts as a further step in a direction we’ve been pursuing for 32 years,” said co-CEO Walter Robb. “Which is to provide some sort of clarity, some sort of definition, some sort of leadership in the marketplace.” And while it’s impossible to predict the future, given Whole Foods’ prominence, it could affect the larger grocery industry as well. While most supermarket chains have their own sets of standards, Whole Foods’ appear to be the most stringent in the industry, analysts say. “They’ve definitely taken it to a whole different level,” said Brian Yarbrough, an analyst for Edward Jones. Since 2010, the Whole Foods has unveiled the following standards: A color-coded rating program that measures the environmental impact of its wild-caught seafood. A green rating indicates the species is relatively abundant and is caught in environmentally friendly ways. The worst, a red rating, means the species is overfished, or that the methods used to catch it harm other marine life or habitats. Red-rated species were eventually phased out by Whole Foods. - An animal welfare rating system for meats and other livestock products. The five-step rating system starts at step 1 (animals aren’t crowded or kept in cages or crates) and goes to the highest tier, where animals spend their entire lives on the same farm. - A rating system for household cleaning products, based on the environmental-friendliness of ingredients. Red-rated products do not meet the standard and aren’t sold at Whole Foods. Products can’t receive an orange rating if they’ve been tested on animals or have artificial colors. The highest rating, green, is given to products with all natural ingredients and “no petroleum-derived ingredients.” - And this year, the company announced that all products in its North American stores that contain genetically modified ingredients will be

AUSTIN: Whole Foods Market—believes consumers have the right to know how their food is produced and this includes whether or not it contains Genetically Modified Organisms or GMOs. — MCT labeled as such by 2018. Robb said the reasons Foods isn’t reacting to market forces as much as for the new standards have been varied. For it’s staying true to its core values of providing instance, the meat standards came about partly high-quality foods, he said. “From the beginning because Whole Foods founder John Mackey was of the company, the core value No. 1 is selling very influenced by various books on animal wel- the highest-quality natural and organic foods,” fare. Also, the label of “natural meat” was mean- he said. “So in a way, the company is built on a ing less and less in the industry, Robb said. As for standard. And that standard ultimately is the seafood, the program was a reaction to concerns thing that sets Whole Foods apart.” Andrew Wolf, an analyst with BB&T Capital about overfishing and the environmental effects Markets, said the new standards, especially of certain fishing methods. Other standards, like the ones on household regarding seafood sustainability and labeling cleaning products, were partly for competitive products with genetically modified ingredients, reasons - Robb said Whole Foods didn’t have a represent Whole Foods getting into the “bleed“very good offer” in those areas. As for genetical- ing edge” of food standards. But it’s consistent ly modified ingredients, Whole Foods first with Whole Foods being a mission-driven comendorsed them for labeling in 1992, Robb said. pany of “leading the consumer toward more But it never got much traction until a new healthy eating and living,” he said. “It’s just conprocess for modifying alfalfa, which is used to sistent with who they are, is the simplest way to feed livestock, popped up in the news. And a put it,” Wolf said. Yarbrough said the new stanproposition in California to label genetically dards are an evolution of the natural and organmodified ingredients in products last year - ics industry that Whole Foods has built. “It’s just while it ultimately failed - further brought it into another way of building customer loyalty and the public consciousness. “It’s up on the table building that faith in that, when they offer somenow and people are talking about it,” Robb said. thing they’re serious about this business,” he “It’s part of the national conversation.” But Whole said. — MCT

Chocolate makers adjusting recipes for success


LOS ANGELES: New technologies have led to a gradual workforce reduction over the years at the See’s Candies factory in†Los Angeles, California, but there is still plenty done by hand. — MCT

n 92 years, See’s Candies has never shied away from being old-fashioned. At the factory on La Cienega Boulevard in Los Angeles, some octogenarian workers measure their decades of employment in hip replacements. Quaint floral details are still hand-piped onto chocolate eggs. An inexorable march of candies heads through tubes the length of a football field, where they’re drenched in layers of chocolate - a traditional practice known as enrobing. Like cars merging out of highway toll lanes, they appear from cooling tunnels into employees’ waiting hands. “Old Time” is part of See’s slogan. But the South San Francisco company is evolving along with the rest of the chocolate industry, forced by predicaments far more severe than “I Love Lucy” conveyor-belt hijinks. Chocolate is a huge business, pulling in $90 billion in global sales annually, $19 billion of it in the US, according to market research company Mintel Group Ltd. Price increases and product innovation helped the industry grow 16 percent from

2007 through 2012, the firm found. But scientists predict a looming cocoa bean shortage, intensified by climate change and botanical disease. The International Cocoa Organization said that global production in the last growing year fell 6.1 percent, and it forecasts a 1.8 percent slide this year. That would probably cause a cocoa shortfall of 45,000 metric tons in the current marketing year ending Sept. 30, the group said. Tighter supplies as well as rising sugar and manufacturing costs are adding to the price of truffles and bonbons. Sugar prices have risen 11.6 percent on average in each of the past five years, influencing Kit Kat maker Hershey Co.’s decision in 2011 to raise wholesale prices on most of its candy products by 9.7 percent. In addition, health-minded US consumers, increasingly wary of sugary snacks, are nibbling on fresh fruit 10 times more over the course of a year than they do on chocolate, according to research firm NPD. “Chocolate is an impulse item, an indul-

gence,” said Marcia Mogelonsky, an analyst at Mintel. “But consumers have become price-sensitive to chocolate - the economy is so bad that people are actually cutting back on their consumption.” So what’s an Oompa Loompa to do? Switch up the chocolate strategy. Companies are looking to countries not known as major cocoa producers, such as Vietnam and China, to boost production. Mondelez International Inc., owner of brands such as Cadbury and Toblerone, said it would invest $400 million in the next decade to improve cocoa farming communities and help boost productivity; other massive candy sellers have taken similar steps. In the US, advances in technology and equipment contributed to layoffs, causing chocolate employment to slide 2.2 percent a year on average since 2007, according to research firm IBISWorld. Simultaneously, chocolate companies are trimming wages to cut costs and boost profit, according to researchers. — MCT

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Joyalukkas launches jewelry showroom KUWAIT: The multi-billion dollar global conglomerate is continuing the aggressive growth plans of its world renowned jewelry retail chain, Joyalukkas Jewellery. The jewelry chain with a loyal customer base of over 10 million customers worldwide has opened its new jewelry showroom in the city of Ramanathapuram in Tamil Nadu. Film star and Joyalukkas brand ambassador R Madhavan inaugurated the new showroom in the presence of many local VIP’s and dignitaries. The Joyalukkas Ramanathapuram showroom is located on No. 4 Roman Church Junction, and offers ample parking space and the biggest shopping space for jewelry shopping in the city. The showroom features dazzling collections and exquisite designs in gold, diamond, precious stones, platinum, pearl and silver. The collections include mix of traditional, ethno contemporary and international designs that have won of hearts and following of customers around the world. The grand opening highlighted the launch of special celebratory Akshaya Tritiya offers. The special offers include an exquisite bangle exclusively created for the auspicious occasion. Joyalukkas is also launching many new collections and designs to coincide with the Akshaya Tritiya celebrations period which have been designed by renowned designers in India and other popular jewelry destinations of the world. Joyalukkas also maintains strict adherence to quality by following and adopting international and various Indian standards to ensure 100 percent trust and assurance, for example, 100 percent IGI certified diamonds, BIS Hallmark gold jewelry and PGI certified platinum jewelry etc. Joyalukkas, is also the first and only ISO 14001-2004 and ISO 9001-2008 certified jewelry retail chain, Other unique feature of Joyalukkas jewelry includes consumer friendly value added schemes like ‘Easy Gold schemes, Joyalukkas Golden Rewards Card, 100 percent buy back guarantee and more. This international jew-

elry retail chain is also one of few retail chains to be recognized with many awards and accolades for its exceptional standards in jewelry retailing. Its popular Chennai showroom has been recognized by the Limca Book of records for being the largest jewelry showroom in the world. Joyalukkas has also been awarded the prestigious ‘Superbrand’ status four years in a row in the UAE. The global conglomerate, Joyalukkas Group’s other business interests include Money Exchange, Fashion & Silks, Luxury Air Charter, Malls and Real Estate. Joyalukkas Jewellery is one of the world’s largest jewelery retail chains and its presence includes Singapore, UK, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman and India. The jewelry retailer currently has a global customer base of over 10 million customers worldwide and offers over 1 million choices in all types of jewelry at each of its showroom. “We are starting our financial year by opening in the city of Ramanathapuram in Tamil Nadu. This we feel is the most appropriate since Tamil Nadu is one of our most important locations. Tamil Nadu hosts our Limca Book of world records recognized world’s biggest jewelry showroom in Chennai and our Ramanathapuram showroom will be the biggest jewelry experience in this great city. We have planned the biggest and the best jewelry experience for jewelry lovers in Ramanathapuram and me and my team are looking forward to serving this city’s discerning customers,” said Joy Alukkas, Chairman & MD, Joyalukkas Group. “My vision for our jewelry business is to ‘ornament the world’. We intend to manage this by offering our customers the best mix of Price, Choice, Convenience and Service. My team and I, work every single day to ensure this at all times. I am sure Ramananthapuram residents will love our dazzling jewelry collections, choices, look and feel of our showroom and the great experience we have planned for them” added Joy Alukkas.

KUWAIT: KAMCO board members are pictured during the Annual General Meeting. —Photo by Yasser Al-Zayyat

KAMCO holds annual general assembly meeting 2012 KAMCO posts 11% growth KUWAIT: KIPCO Asset Management Company KAMCO convened its Annual General Meeting yesterday, which was followed immediately, as in the past years, by the Annual Transparency Investor’s Forum (Al-Shafafiyah). In his address to shareholders, KAMCO’s Chairman Sheikh Abdullah Nasser Al-Sabah stated, “On behalf of KAMCO’s Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that our company is set on the right growth track and profitability recovery is expected thanks to our restructuring process which has seen us streamline the company so that it is better able to tackle the challenges ahead and focus on our growing core activities of asset management and investment banking. This year, KAMCO posted a net loss of KD 11.6 million or loss per share of -48.9 fils, compared to a net loss of KD 6.0 million in 2011, or -25.8 fils per share. However, along with other operational successes, our assets under management grew to KD 2.41 billion ($8.4 billion) in 2012, compared to KD 2.17 billion ($7.6 billion) in 2011, posting a growth of 11 percent. During the year, the company’s assets were reduced by almost half from KD 147 million to KD 77 million. In addition, KD 22 million were repaid to the banks, bringing total debt to KD 40 million from KD 62 million in 2011. In line with our new strategy, KAMCO purposefully divested from non-core assets that were considered out of synch with our strategy. It was this process of restructuring and operational streamlining that lead KAMCO to incur losses for the year. Despite these losses, KAMCO actually witnessed a marked increase in operational income in 2012 from its growing core activities, resulting in an operational profit compared to operational losses the previous year. During the year, KAM-

CO managed to successfully close three major bond issuances for its clients, representing a total raised surpassing KD 200 million. Furthermore, KAMCO managed to close numerous investment banking transactions, including an acquisition for a client of an educational company, the largest deal in the education sector in the GCC region for the year. With regards to KAMCO’s managed funds, KAMCO Investment Fund surpassed the Kuwait Stock Exchange price index, while the Kuwait Education Fund witnessed a dramatic growth, securing its place as one of the best performing funds in Kuwait. To conclude, Sheikh Abdullah thanked former MD & CEO, Sadoun Ali for leading the company in the most testing time of its history and also thanked the shareholders for their continued support. Shafafiyah Investor’s Forum Upon adjourning the shareholders’ general assembly meeting, KAMCO’s management held the company ’s Annual Shafafiyah Investor’s Forum, which has become a tradition organized after the shareholders’ general assembly meeting. The agenda of the investor presentation delivered at the forum featured a review of KAMCO’s per formance since its inception up until 2012 and the way forward. Reviewing KAMCO’s performance over the course of 15 years, the company’s Acting Chief Executive Officer, Faisal Mansour Sarkhou said, “It is truly encouraging to see that our operational revenues, which include management fees and advisory fees increased significantly this year. Moreover, we achieved operational profits for the year 2012, compared to losses in 2011, and our assets under management now

Ford Focus ST sees strong demand in ME DUBAI: The Focus ST is Ford’s first truly global performance car, building on the heritage of previous Focus ST models and giving drivers around the world the opportunity to share the exhilarating performance, unrivaled handling, addictive sound and sporty design that Ford’s ST badge represents. Shortly after arriving in the Middle East, the stunning Focus ST is becoming popular with strong demand for more units to be available. The five-door Focus ST delivers the same driving attributes that makes all Ford ‘Sports Technologies’ (ST) models stand out. The chassis,

engine, sound and comfort of the vehicle are tuned to deliver a truly sporty experience combined with a high level of refinement. These same attributes will form the genetic code for future Ford models that might wear the ST badge. “The Focus ST has been designed to appeal to driving enthusiasts across the Middle East,” said Paul Anderson, Marketing director at Ford Middle East. “Our global performance teams based in North America, Europe and Asia have worked together to develop the core product attributes steering, driving dynamics, sound quality and power enhancements - for all Ford ST models including interior and exterior differentiation. They’ve been defined to the extent that our engineers were able to apply that global DNA fingerprint to the new Focus ST and deliver a distinctive sporting personality all its own. “Performance hatch lovers know the Focus ST and its capabilities very well and have been eager to own one as soon as we introduced it to the Middle East markets,” he added. “The feedback we have received so far from our dealers and customers around the region has been tremendous.” Performance meets efficiency under the hood Focus ST is powered by the 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine, which offers an uncompromising mix of performance and efficiency. The 248-Km/hour

performance vehicle achieves a class-leading 7.35 L/100km highway, 10.23 L/100km city and 9.05 L/100km combined with 252 horsepower and 270 lb.-ft. of torque. Ford’s lightweight, all-aluminum EcoBoost engines provide the power of a larger engine in a fuel-efficient smaller displacement, leveraging three key technologies. High pressure direct injection, low-inertia turbocharging and Twinindependent Variable Cam Timing (Ti-VCT) create an advanced combustion system which brings new levels of performance and fuel efficiency.

This is the first time Ford has placed an EcoBoost engine in a high performance model, offering drivers impressive power and torque throughout the rev range at their disposal. For everyday driving, however, the characteristics of the Focus ST let them drive in a more fuel efficient way. Mated to the 2.0-liter engine is a six-speed manual transmission, which has specially revised gearing to produce the maximum punch from each throw of the gear shift. The Global Performance Vehicles group spent significant attention to detail in ensuring the ratio of sixth gear was perfectly in tune with the Focus ST, giving the driver optimum performance while remaining long enough to help maintain excellent fuel economy on longer runs.

Sound and driving dynamics The previous generation European-engineered Focus ST was acclaimed for its fivecylinder engine sound. With the introduction of a four-cylinder EcoBoost engine into the latest Focus ST, the Ford sound engineers ensured the audible delights from the new engine maintains the same robust tone. A significant part of this process is the reworking of the famed sound symposer, first found on the previous Focus ST and subsequently employed on the European Focus RS and RS500 models. Driving dynamics are at the heart of the Focus ST. Innovation and technology combine to create a chassis capable of exceeding the expectations of even the most demanding driving enthusiast, while giving even novice motorists an unforgettable drive. From the driver’s seat, customers will experience the new-developed Ford Sport Steering System. This variable ratio steering rack is designed to increase the agility of the Focus ST on winding roads yet still inspire the same high-speed confidence. The unique system makes steering less sensitive when driving in a straight line, but increases the feel during cornering. Drivers can keep their hands firmly gripped on the steering wheel through tight hairpins, maximizing their control over the vehicle. It also has benefits in slow-speed situations such as tight parking maneuvers, with less input needed from the driver to direct the vehicle into the space. Bold look inside and out The exhilarating drive of the new Focus ST will have customers spending as much time behind the steering wheel as possible. With that in mind, Ford’s designers have worked hard to ensure the interior of the Focus ST is a great place to be, helping the driver to feel as connected to the vehicle as possible. The interior of the core Focus model is already designed with a “cockpit” feel. In the ST variant, that sporty feeling is heightened with everything the driver touches and feels reinforcing that it is unmistakably an ST. Details range from specially designed pedals to the steering wheel and gearshift. The darker headlining and trim on the pillars, an integral part of the ST’s design DNA, adds to the performance driving feel. On the outside, the iconic Y-shaped wheel spoke design of the European Focus ST has evolved for the new incarnation. A set of 18-inch alloy wheels carry on the recognized Focus ST style but subtle revisions bring them up-to-date for 2013. The striking one-piece design interpretation of Ford’s signature trapezoidal grille at the front, through the sculpted side skirts and the dynamic rear bumper with prominent diffuserstyle vents in the lower fascia, the Focus ST’s design adds aggression and aerodynamic stability compared to the base models.

stand at KD2.4 billion - an increase of 11 percent for the year. We see such results as encouraging especially with the stagnant local Capital Market and the turbulent economic and financial situation in most parts of the world. Since our launch in 1998, KAMCO has generated revenue totaling KD 231 million, profits of KD 94 million, and distributed dividends of KD 86 million. This means that investing in KAMCO since 1998 would have resulted in a healthy double digit return. Moreover, what is more remarkable is that even during the financial crisis, KAMCO’s revenues stood at KD 113 million, and was able to turn profits of KD 28 million, in addition to distributing dividends totaling KD 66 million. This sets us apart from our peers, and places us amongst three investment companies in Kuwait (out of ten) to have accumulated positive profits in the 2007 - 2012 period; while during the same period our peers recorded a combined loss close to KD 600 million.” With regards to opportunities and aspirations for 2013, Sarkhou was keen to note that, “2013 will prove to be an exciting year for KAMCO as we continue in our endeavor in being the client’s first choice for their asset management and investment banking needs not only in Kuwait, but in the region. As a company, we will maintain our efforts to sustain an efficient capital structure to ensure building healthy future returns to our shareholders. Furthermore, we aim to innovate and develop new investment products, and further enhance our advisory services in order to offer a wider range of products. Lastly, we assure our shareholders that we will continue to monitor our costs in line with revenues to optimize shareholder returns”.

Real estate expo set to open in Kuwait KUWAIT: Under the patronage of Minister of Commerce Abdul Aziz Al-Khaldi the activities of real estate and investments takes off today morning in Kuwait. The exhibition is organized by top EXP group for organizing exhibitions and conferences, in cooperation with Kuwait international fair at fair ground in Msehref. Opening ceremony will be attended by assistant undersecretary for Ministry of Commerce Sheikh Nimer Fahad Al-Malik Al-Sabah and a large number of ambassadors and social and economic personalities. The exhibition activities lasts until Saturday, May 4. Managing director top Expo group, Waleed Al-Qaddoumi focused on this exhibition which has great importance for two main reasons. The first is that it is related to the real estate sector, which is considered one of the most important economic sectors in Kuwait and the world at the current time. The second is the current course of the exhibition has made record figures through the participation of 70 real estate, investment and financial companies. Out of which three local banks, and offers more than 200 real estate project divided over 17 countries around the world. Namely Kuwait, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Jordan, Egypt, Lebanon, UK, USA, Germany, Bulgaria, Georgia, Spain, Bosnia and Turkey. Al-Qaddoumi said that the previous figures had different meanings. Maybe the most important is the gain of trust once again in the real estate sector. Which proved to be the most important sector after years of international financial crisis. Other meaning for this large number of participant indicates that market is thirsty for real estate opportunities, which is today considered more safe and secure, and have better return which was very clear in the Turkish market and the European markets, which remained stable and secured. AlQaddoumi said that the real estate sector is back on its right track, with respect of prices, and the quantity of projects offered and the participating companies have prepared themselves for projects and real estate products that can provide opportunities for real estate ownership, which suits the different sectors of the society. Al-Qaddoumi expressed sorrow for the absence of the Kuwaiti products in participation in the exhibition except some limited projects due to the high prices at one hand, and due to real estate laws which limited the development of those projects. He pointed to the number of Turkish companies participating, saying out of 70 participating companies, there are about 25 companies offering real estate in different parts of Turkey. Compared to five companies offering projects in Kuwait. With respect the Turkish market, AlQaddoumi said that it enjoys political sta-

bility, and high economic growth, and share with us culture, region, norms and traditions. Such things have induced a large number of investors, especially from Kuwait and due to the hot political situation in many of the Arab countries, new markets have opened up in Europe, who enjoys political and economic stability, and

Waleed Al-Qaddoumi

Mohammed Waleed Qadoumi good return on investments. Demand has increased on real estate in markets like UK, USA, Germany, Bulgaria, Georgia, Spain, and Bosnia. Investors main concern is stability good returns. Gulf markets, demands for real estate never stops, and on top of those markets Saudi Arabia. Specially that religion tours remains basic demand for all investors. The markets of Mecca and Madina have a high place among all Muslims, and thus demand on those markets continues rising year after year. Further, the Saudi markets requires more real estate projects.

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


Samsung S 4 offers a GALAXY of features Samsung’s new Galaxy S 4 takes the smartphone industry by storm By Priyanka Saligram DUBAI/KUWAIT: There are phones. There are smartphones. And then there’s the Samsung Galaxy S 4. To call it just another smartphone would be an insult because the Galaxy S 4 has all the potential and features to become a true life companion - just as Samsung wants it to be. For all Samsung fans and tech geeks who have been eyeing the all-new Galaxy S 4 even before it made its debut, here’s the good news you’ve been waiting for: The Galaxy S 4 has been officially launched in Kuwait on April 27 and you will be able to get your touchscreen-loving hands on it at all major outlets in Kuwait. “With the launch of the Galaxy S 4, Samsung is continuing to enhance the way that people live by offering the best-in-class hardware and the most advanced software to provide a true life companion for consumers in the region,” said Hayssam Yassine, Head of Telecommunications Group at Samsung Gulf Electronics. Following the successful Galaxy S series, this phone is yet another great proof point of people-inspired innovation. At Samsung, we’ll never stop pursuing innovation conceived by people, so we can inspire them in return.” The Galaxy S 4 was officially launched in Dubai on April 23 at a glittering event hosted at the Armani Hotel in Burj Khalifa amidst a lot of fanfare. Eager media folks from all across the GCC were treated to a demonstration of the smartphone’s capabilities and all the rumors of this phone’s superior sensors and crisp camera clarity turned out to be true. The Galaxy S 4 is jam-packed with so many features that it would have easily taken the whole night to go into each one of them, so Samsung played it smart and let the invitees play with the smartphones and discover the innovations for themselves. People who had their eyes on the camera came away impressed with the HD 13 megapixel rear camera which had clarity that almost felt like you were looking through clear glass. Folks who had

their ears tuned to the music features thought that the ‘Group Play’ function - which allowed them to share their favorite tracks with others without Wi-Fi or network signal - certainly sounded like music to their ears. And for the globe-trotting, wannabe multi-linguists out there - the Galaxy S 4’s ‘S Translator’ function which can translate up to 10 different languages - was indeed the next best thing since sliced bread. So, everybody who walked in hungry for bigger, better, faster and more walked away with a full stomach and a happy burp. True hand-held happiness A rich life is one that’s filled with meaningful moments and the Galaxy S 4 captures and shares those special moments. The Galaxy S 4 has the world’s first Full HD Super AMOLED (Advanced Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode, in case you’re curious) display to showcase crystal clear resolution. Its 5-inch large screen has 441ppi for stunning viewing quality. The Galaxy S 4 also utilizes Corning’s new Gorilla Glass 3, making it durable and largely unbreakable. This cover glass, Corning’s newest formulation, enables improved damage and scratch resistance and reduced scratch visibility - which is great news for those of you who have butter fingers. Looks that kill The exquisitely-crafted design has a larger screen size and battery even though its light (130 grams) and slim (7.9mm). The Galaxy S 4 is slimmer and yet stronger which fits snugly in the pocket despite being loaded with so many customizations. Currently, two options are available - Black Mist and White Frost - though a variety of other colors are set to make a splash later this year. Capturing the moment Equipped with a 13 megapixel rear camera, the Galaxy S 4 also boasts a ‘Dual Camera’ function that allows simultaneous use of both front and rear cameras. This would be perfect for Skype calls as it enables you to make and receive a video call with

DUBAI: (Left) Haris Munif, Head of Product Marketing, Telecommunications Group, Samsung Gulf Electronics, (center) Young Soo Kim, President, Samsung Gulf Electronics and (right) Hayssam Yassine, Head of Telecommunications Group, Samsung Gulf Electronics are pictured during the Galaxy S 4 launch.

Latin American presidents love Twitter BUENOS AIRES: When a million angry Argentines flooded the streets earlier this month to protest her government, President Cristina Fernandez decided to post a message on Twitter. And another. And then another. “Yes, I’m a bit stubborn, and I’m also old. But in the end, it’s lucky to arrive at old age, isn’t it?” one tweet read. She also mused about a 19th century fresco in her “gorgeous” palace, and the merits of a state-run literacy program. At the end of the day, Fernandez had sent 61 tweets in a nine-hour period - prolific even by the standards of Latin America, where presidents and other leading politicians have embraced social media with a zeal unmatched anywhere else. Their love for Twitter, in particular, has given millions of voyeurs a real-time window into policymaking - and, often, their leaders’ most intimate thoughts. Yet it has also fueled debate on whether some are guilty of “oversharing” - making politics more polarized, confrontations more personal, and potentially making the leaders themselves look awkward when they post about chats with strangers in a bathroom, for example, as Fernandez also did this month. “Everybody who uses Twitter knows that sometimes you write something and push the send button without thinking enough about it. That’s dangerous in politics ... and we’ve seen many examples of it,” said Alan Clutterbuck, head of Fundacion RAP, a group based in Buenos Aires that seeks to improve the civility of political discourse. “We should hold our political leaders to a different standard,” he said. “You see a message that says ‘I’m having a sandwich,’ and you think: ‘Who cares?’” With a rich tradition of florid oratory, Latin America produced Cuba’s Fidel Castro and his famed five-hour-long speeches. So it’s unsurprising that some of its modern-day leaders have embraced a new platform to express themselves but also struggle to shoehorn their thoughts into a few tidy blasts of 140 characters or less. Politicians have also been hurling around insults since before the Twitter age, such as when the late Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez called former US President George W. Bush the “devil” at the United Nations in 2006. Yet there is no question that the technology has made the invective fly faster than ever before. In the aftermath of this month’s bitterly contested election to succeed Chavez in Venezuela, there were moments when both candidates were simultaneously tweeting attacks on each other. Eventual winner Nicolas Maduro referred to the opposition as “fascists,”

declaring: “In their crazy hatred and desperation they’re capable of anything.” Losing candidate Henrique Capriles used Twitter to question the results of the voting hours after polls closed, tweeting “There is an illegitimate president!” Showing their human side Leaders elsewhere have also taken to Twitter, though not with the same fervor. U.S. President Barack Obama has a robust feed, but his profile says he only sends some himself, signing them “bo.” As of Friday, he hadn’t done so in at least a month. In contrast, Latin America’s most prolific tweeting presidents - Fernandez, Maduro, Colombia’s Juan Manuel Santos and Mexico’s Enrique Pena Nieto - all send a large percentage of messages themselves, their aides say. The most popular of all was Chavez, who had more than 4 million followers prior to his death in March. Not everybody’s on board: The president of the region’s biggest country, Brazil’s Dilma Rousseff, stopped tweeting right after she was elected in 2010. “She thinks it’s a total waste of time,” one aide said. But for others, it has become part of their identity. Since leaving office in 2010, former Colombian President Alvaro Uribe has sometimes sent dozens of tweets a day criticizing Santos for being weak on security, among other alleged failings. Uribe’s critics say he has diminished his stature, and unfairly hamstrung his chosen successor, by weighing in so frequently on day-today affairs. But he has shown no signs of slowing down, and even hung in his home office a framed cartoon of himself hunched over his Blackberry, tweeting away. “It allows direct communication, without intermediaries,” Uribe said via e-mail. “The danger is that it tempts you to react to first impressions, so I try to avoid seeing many of the provocations that arrive.” At its best, Twitter can remind voters that their politicians are human - and even vulnerable. The night of the march against her in Buenos Aires, Fernandez traveled to Caracas, and began to reflect on Chavez’s death - words that added poignancy given the sudden passing of her own husband, former President Nestor Kirchner, in 2010. “Why is it that those who live with so much intensity abandon us so soon?” she tweeted. The following night, she started writing about “the human condition,” before seemingly remembering that, even on Twitter, there are limits. “Pardon me,” she tweeted. “I started thinking, and since I can’t speak (because my voice is gone), I’m channeling it through here.” “In the end, it’s healthy and absolutely inoffensive.” — Reuters

friends while showing what you are looking at during the call. The camera functionality extends beyond dual camera, as the device is also equipped with 12 outstanding shooting modes including ‘Drama Shot’, which allows you to see all the action in one continuous time-lapse, and ‘Sound & Shot’, which uniquely stores sound and voice together as the picture is clicked so that the person viewing it feels like they were with you in the moment as the action unfolded. This function may very well go on to be a huge hit with soppy and sentimental grandparents who would love to view the picture and experience it as realistically as possible. These meaningful moments can also now automatically be stored in a photo album, with the ‘Story Album’ function. Photos taken by the Galaxy S 4 are automatically gathered and sorted out according to your timeline, geo-tagging information, or a specific event to create a photo album. These unique story albums can be ordered and delivered as an offline photo album through a new partnership with Blurb, which means that the best memories are a click away. Getting the party started What is happiness if it can’t be shared with the people you love? Would a party really be a party if there was only one person attending it? Samsung Galaxy S 4 has well-thought out features which make it easy to share all that you love with the people you love, no matter where you are. With its ‘Group Play’ function, users can enjoy music, photos, documents and games with those around them without even requiring Wi-Fi or cellular signal. This novel feature enables users to connect directly with others to share, play and co-create content and entertainment instantly. Its ‘Share Music’ option gives the users a chance to blast the same song on multiple phones in sync and get the party started. In fact, the screen even transforms itself into a funky looking speaker and looks like a sleek boom box in the palm. The Galaxy S 4 supports HSPA+42 Mbps and 4G LTE which means wherever you are in the world, you can bank on perfect connectivity. Letting the phone do all the thinking Imagine a world where you could get all the work done with just a swipe of your hand. In what effectively looks like an episode of ‘I Dream of Jeannie’, the Galaxy S 4 detects your face, voice and motions to enable screen control with no need for finger touch activation. If you’re eating greasy French Fries or cleaning after Rover’s undigested dinner, you don’t need to dirty the pristine screen by touching it - all it takes is a simple air gesture to open everything from the address book to any web page. And in case you’re left with no choice but to touch it wearing gardening gloves, the screen is sensitive enough to spring to life despite the rubber feel. ‘Samsung Smart Pause’ enables you to control the screen with just your look. When you are watching a video, it pauses when you look away and then resumes playing when you turn your gaze back to it. (If only this feature could be translated to real life, then a lot of annoying people could be muted by just turning our faces away!) ‘Samsung Smart Scroll’ allows you to scroll the browser or emails up and down without touching the screen. It recognizes your face looking at the screen and the movement of your wrist and then

scrolls up or down the pages accordingly. ‘Air View’ allows users to hover over the screen with their fingers to preview the content of an email, S Planner, image gallery or video without having to open it. You can even see a magnified view on the Internet browser, or a phone number saved in the speed dial on the keypad. With ‘Air Gesture’, you can change the music track, scroll up and down a web page, or accept a call with a wave of your hand. With ‘S VoiceTM Drive’, you can activate commands via voice control for optimization when driving. Once connected to a car Bluetooth, the phone automatically turns into driving mode, converting text to speech so you can easily and safely check messages with no need to look at the screen.

‘Samsung Optical Reader’ makes life yet more effortless, by automatically recognizing text, a business card or QR code information, and providing useful functions such as translation, call, text message and search. At home, using ‘Samsung WatchON’, the Galaxy S 4 will transform into an IR remote to control your home entertainment system including TV, set-top box, DVD player and even air conditioner. Virtual fitness trainer The Galaxy S 4 empowers your life by keeping you up-to-date with health and well-being information using the new ‘S Health’ software. The combination of sensors built within the device systematically and automatically monitors your health, surroundings and so much more to help improve your quality of life. Also, users can easily check their health conditions using food diary, exercise diary and sleep monitor to stay fit and healthy. (Certain functions are enabled by specific accessories.) To further protect your well-being, ‘Samsung Adapt Display’ provides an optimal viewing experience, customized for each type of application, and ‘Samsung Adapt Sound’ offers an ideal level and type of sound, personalized for each user, to make the most out of life.

Google boss sees autocrats’ pushback against Internet WASHINGTON: Life in authoritarian states is likely to get tougher before it gets better as their citizens gain more access to the Internet, Google’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt said Friday. Speaking at a seminar in Washington, Schmidt said hundreds of millions of people in non-democratic nations will be trading in their basic cellphones for Internet-connected smartphones as prices fall over the next few years. “When that happens, all of sudden, we are going to hear the distinct voices of the citizens of those countries in a way that we’ve never heard before,” said the globe-trotting Schmidt, a recent visitor to North Korea. “But their governments are not like our governments... In that context, (autocratic) governments are going to work really, really hard to stop this, because the way to really get a dictator going is to threaten his authority. “ They ’re going to do things like restrict speech and restrict assembly-but they are going to find it impossible to do as comprehensively as they can,” he added. This “mobile revolution” will become “the defining story” for the 57 percent of the world’s population that lives in autocratic countries over the next five to 10 years, he predicted. Schmidt delivered the keynote speech at a Google-sponsored “big tent” seminar, the first ever in the US capital, that cast a spotlight on freedom of expression in the digital age. He quipped about Iran’s plans for a homegrown “Halal Internet”-Israel would be wiped off its online maps, he predicted-and how officials in Pyongyang had tried but failed to get him to spill the beans on the next version of Google’s Android mobile software. And while he once thought North Korea to be “the absolutely worse place” on Earth, Schmidt extended that dubious honor to Eritrea, scene of an apparent coup in January that went largely unreported for weeks. “Think of it, how isolated these poor Eritreans are,” he said. “Censors were so successful that the only statement that got out of the country was a statement that there was not a

coup. Why would you announce that there wasn’t a coup unless there had been one?” Other seminar participants included the outgoing US deputy secretary of homeland security, Jane Holl Lute, a champion of a free and open Internet despite the way it can be exploited by extremists. “It’s not a crime in this country to be radical” unless extreme views are expressed through violent means, Lute said, speaking less than two weeks after the Boston Marathon bombings. Lending some comic relief to the seminar was Saudi standup comedian Omar Hussein, whose mock Arabic news program on YouTube-styled on Jon Stewart’s “The Daily Show” in the United States-attracts a million views per episode. “The only difference is that we cannot talk about politics. Or religion. Or sex,” said Hussein, 26, the American-born son of Saudi expats whose resume includes a

stint as an engineer in a baby diaper factory. “But when you have more restrictions you actually become more creative,” added Hussein, whose 22-year-old wife Lama Sabri is the show’s lead writer. Far from trying to shut down the show, titled “On the Fly,” Hussein said Saudi ministers have reached out to its producers, hoping it might talk about their work as a way to connect with Saudi youth who are active on social media. Whereas “On the Fly” in its first season took care to warn a government minister that it would be making a joke about him, it recently depicted “a bunch of ministers” as Pokemon characters without asking them first. “We’re taking it step by step,” Hussein said. “Episode by episode, we can actually discuss more interesting topics. The risk is that if you jump a big jump, that’s when it’ll be the ‘season finale.’” — AFP

WASHINGTON: Saudi standup comedian Omar Hussein explains his approach to comedy during Google’s Big Tent event April 26, 2013 at the W Hotel in Washington, DC. — AFP

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

H E A LT H & S C I E N C E How computer modeling is assisting cardiac surgery at Great Ormond Street Hospital


eclining - a word with negative connotations? Not if you’re one of the many hundreds of patients who today face less than a 20th of the risk of life-threatening complications following heart surgery than they did in the 1960s. As it stands, thanks to the remarkable pace of innovation sustained by Great Ormond Street Hospital’s Cardiothoracic team over the past 50 years, the chances of children surviving any single heart operation today are more than 98 per cent. It’s a remarkable statistic, but far more remarkable are the genuinely pioneering research efforts of the teams who work behind the scenes of Great Ormond Street Hospital’s Cardiology department, such as Professor Andrew Taylor. He is an expert in cardiovascular imaging, using the latest advances in Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Computed Tomography (CT) scanning to see through the complications that could otherwise thwart surgeons’ efforts to repair children’s hearts. “When I first came to Great Ormond Street Hospital as a consultant in 2003, it was already apparent that a large number of the leading cardiothoracic surgeons - certainly from the United States - had come here for training under Marc De Leval,” explains Professor Taylor. “Marc took a number of surgical procedures to the next level, but research really underpins it all.” The Unit at Great Ormond Street Hospital was the first of its kind to have a dedicated research programme, thanks to a charitable donation in the 1960s. “This research helps us to push the boundaries of what we can do, but also helps to make our work as safe as possible.” Undoubtedly, the field has advanced in ways that the Unit’s founders - affectionately known as “the plumber and his mate”, but both giants in their respective fields of surgery and cardiology - could not have imagined when they laid the foundation for the complex and delicate procedures that today’s children undergo. As a tertiary referral hospital, patients are sent to Great Ormond Street Hospital often as a place of last hope. The hospital is one of the largest in Europe for treating complex cases of congenital heart defects - problems with the heart’s pumping that are present at birth. “We’ve always recorded all our failures and successes,” says Professor Taylor. “It’s the only way we can really learn more about what we might do better, in cases where things didn’t go as we’d expect. For most surgical treatments, we now have 10, 15, 20 years’ worth of follow-up. It’s a huge pool of information we can use to plan today’s surgery, and also to improve the information and reassurance we provide to families.” Patients with the most complex heart defects, such as transposition of the great arteries, where the principal blood vessels of the heart are attached back to front, and tetralogy of Fallot, the most common cardiac cause of blue babies, are likely to require open-heart surgery at one or more points in their early lives. However, a series of landmark trials of a new form of therapy in the past decade have given these patients continued treatment without the repeated trauma of highly invasive surgery. “When I started at Great Ormond Street Hospital, we’d just begun to offer a new form of therapy to children with leaky pulmonary valves, which can arise in a number of different conditions,” explains Professor Taylor. “Rather than fix this by implanting a replacement valve into the heart via surgery on the chest, we’d begun to trial a technique that involved passing a fine catheter tube up through an vein in the leg, and implanting the valve into the heart by expanding a balloon inside a metal ‘stent’, which then fixes the valve in place. “By 2007, we’d carried out the first ever couple of hundred cases of this kind of ‘non-surgical’ valve replacement. Today, thousands of the valves are being implanted in children worldwide. The difference it makes to children’s treatments could not be more pronounced.” This is no exaggeration. For the 15 per cent of patients needing pulmonary valve replacement who are eligible for this treatment, it means a huge reduction in days spent in hospi-

tal - in particular in the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit, where bed space is always in critically short supply. More importantly, compared with open-heart surgery, where recovery can take up to six weeks, these children are back on their feet within a matter of days. “I think people get very used to their symptoms,” reflects Professor Taylor. “So often you would see a patient not complaining of any symptoms, have the treatment, and two days later they say: ‘I didn’t realise I couldn’t walk up three flights of stairs, but I can now!’ It’s that sort of change that you really notice.” Over the 10 years this programme has been running, not a single patient has died from the procedure at Great Ormond Street Hospital. However, Professor Taylor is determined to deliver similar benefits to the 85 per cent of patients currently ineligible for this non-surgical form of valve replacement therapy. “Using MRI and CT images, we have now started to take the next big step to design devices that fit patients’ needs, and ensure that when these devices are implanted this is done safely and securely, a process that is becoming known as personalised medicine.” This simple statement belies an impressively futuristic research programme, as part of a setup that few, if any, other institutions worldwide are fortunate enough to have. Professor Taylor’s research means that his team can test what might be best for the patient well in advance of surgery, by trialling new experimental devices and other treatments in the relative safety of a computer program. Added to this is the technological bonus of 3D printing - a special form of rapid prototype modelling that will literally ‘print’ a physical shape from a computer model. This allows surgeons to hold a resin copy of their patient’s heart and physically plan their surgery to accommodate its unique shape. Heading up a unique team of dedicated inhouse bioengineers, Professor Taylor helps to lead international efforts to capture cardiac imaging data as part of a global collaboration with four leading centres in the United States, as well as research institutes in Milan and Paris, and store this vital information alongside clinical data on a patient’s condition. These methods allow the team to treat patients virtually - within the safety of a computer simulation - and run advanced software programs that test how treatments (drugs, nonsurgical devices and surgery) will perform under the unique conditions of that individual’s own heart. This allows the doctors to decide which treatment is best for each individual patient. For devices, the team can also answer the question of whether the device fits well, whether it will buckle or deform, or erode through the anatomy - all in the confines of a computer model, and long before attempting any surgery or clinical trials of the device in practice. “Taking the original pulmonary valve replacement as an example, the original mechanical data said that the valve would fail after a certain amount of time, but the metal stent holding it in place would be OK,” explains Professor Taylor. “But look at what happens in the patient, and you find that the valve performs well, while the metal stent buckles and weakens due to the movement of the heart, and eventually fractures. That may not be good news if you’re a patient, and it prompted us to completely re-think the way we carried out our research.” These approaches are transforming the questions surgeons are able to answer when contemplating what treatment might be best for their patients. They mark a new era of patient-specific, predictive medicine, in which treatment options for each case are modelled in a virtual environment and tested for suitability before surgery takes place. Professor Taylor is both optimistic and excited about the prospects of this ground-breaking work. Nevertheless, for him the patients and families drive the field ahead. “I’m constantly amazed that if you engage with families they’ll help you in almost any way. They are so generous in supporting our efforts we really couldn’t do anything without them.”

Milupa Apta-Junior voted Product of Year in GCC Top award an endorsement of quality, innovation KUWAIT: In a step that reinforces its market leadership and acceptance, Milupa Apta-Junior - a global leading producer of medically and scientifically suppor ted infant/ toddler formula, was voted Product of the Year in the Infant Nutrition category in the GCC. The prestigious recognition emphasizes the brand’s growing eminence and the customer ’s endorsement of its world-class formula. Milupa Apta-Junior was among the top brands from across the GCC which was recognized at the Product of the Year - Gulf 2013 awards ceremony in Dubai. The prestigious Product of the Year Label, renowned worldwide across 36 countries, is an independent and prestigious award that recognizes excellence in quality and innovation in the consumer goods sector and is the only one of its kind that is voted 100% by con-

sumers themselves. The Product of the Year - GCC award fur ther emphasizes the breakthrough innovation in infant nutrition by Milupa Apta-Junior, which has been leading the way across the world in specialized formula milks for over 80 years. Milupa provides the nutrients a baby/toddler needs for its development and growth and is researched to be as close to breast milk as possible, providing the essentials required to support and mature an infant’s/ toddler’s natural immune system. Moreover, Milupa Apta-Junior’s packaging- a one-of-its-kind innovation in preparation and storage of formula milk has been developed for mother’s convenience. Hani Alaita, Senior Brand Manager with Nutricia Middle East & Africa - the manufacturers of Milupa, said: “With the Product of the Year award, we have been

endorsed by the Gulf Mums, which is the validation of our 80 years of extensive research in the science of breast milk and its specific immune proper ties. Our major breakthrough was the Eazypack, a world-class innovation launched last year developed for mother’s convenience and to make motherhood just a little bit ‘Easier’. This award emphasizes that we are on the right path.” The new Eazypack comprises internal spoon storage for easy finding and optimal hygiene, a new eazy-leveler edge for accurate dosage, and an eazy-click to close firmly and ensure freshness of the product, thus making it the mother’s preferred product. Milupa Apta-Junior has access to around 300 scientists worldwide who are dedicated to research in science of breast milk and infant/ toddler nutrition, as well as a team of expert nutrition-

ists, midwives and other healthcare professionals throughout the Middle East who are all committed to providing the best support for infants/ toddler development. The Product of the Year Gulf 2013 award serves as a shortcut for shoppers in the supermarket as an approved and trusted sign of quality. For manufacturers of the winning products, the award is a powerful marketing message proven to increase product trial, awareness, distribution and sales. Milupa Apta-Junior is a global leading producer of medically and scientifically suppor ted infant/ toddler formula which provides the nutrients a baby/ toddler needs for its development and growth and is researched to be as close to breast milk as possible, providing the essentials required to support and mature an infant ’s/ toddler ’s natural immune system.

US warns of human-to-human H7N9 bird flu WASHINGTON: There is no evidence that the deadly H7N9 bird flu has yet spread between humans in China but health authorities must be ready for the virus to mutate at any time, a top US virologist has warned. Anthony Fauci, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), said officials in China had studied more than 1,000 close contacts of confirmed cases and not found any evidence of human-to-human transmission. “That is powerful evidence because if you had a thousand contacts with someone with the flu you would be pretty sure some of them would have been infected,” Fauci said in an interview with AFP. Nevertheless, Fauci cautioned that authorities needed to be ready for the possibility of the virus mutating and spreading between humans. “It’s unpredictable as are all the influenza. One of the things we need to be concerned about is this might gain the capability of going humanto-human which up to this point has not happened and is somewhat encouraging news,” Fauci said.

“But we still need to be very prepared for the eventuality of that happening.” Researchers are already developing a diagnostic test to identify H7N9, along with a vaccine, with clinical trials due in July or August. “Work is under way on making a diagnostic test to be able to pick it up quickly,” Fauci said.

“We have already started on an early development of a vaccine as we did with H5N1 years ago... Hopefully, we will never have to use it.” More than 110 people in mainland China have been confirmed to be infected with H7N9, with 23 deaths, since Beijing announced on March 31 that the virus had been found in humans.

TAIPEI: A masked staff member of a poultry market sorts out ducks in Taipei. — AFP

Most of the cases have been located in eastern China, although Taiwan has reported one case. Another case has been found in southern China, while Chinese officials confirmed a further outbreak in the central province of Hunan. Chinese authorities have identified poultry as the source of the virus and have confirmed that patients became sick from contact with infected live fowl. A visiting team from the World Health Organization, which wrapped up a week-long visit to China on Wednesday, said there had been no human-to-human transmission but warned H7N9 was “one of the most lethal” influenza viruses ever seen. Fauci praised Beijing for its handling of the current crisis, contrasting it to the response of the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome in 2002-2003, when China stood accused of covering-up the scale of the crisis. “It was not the case with SARS in 2003 but the transparency has been excellent,” Fauci said. “I am quite satisfied with the Chinese response.”— AFP

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

W H AT ’ S O N


First ‘German Shepherd’ lovers forum founded in Kuwait


hat’s more fun than clicking a beautiful picture? Sharing it with others! Let other people see the way you see Kuwait - through your lens. Friday Times will feature snapshots of Kuwait through Instagram feeds. If you want to share your Instagram photos, email us at



any happy returns of the day to our princes “Mimi” on her 8th birthday. Almost a year has passed and let us just say how much we count on you rather than count the year. We all miss you and try to remember your presence at every corner of the house. All the toys, books, furniture in the house missing your lovely touch. Hope your every day is filled with lots of love, joy, and happiness. Wish your success on every step. God bless you. Best wishes from Didun, Mummy, Papa, Boro Mama, Mezho Mama, Rango Mama, lovely Rimi, Urmi didi, Mumu didi, Sharmi didi, Ranti dada, Kona pishi, Pishu, Mamoni, Debu dada, Manu kaka, Somu dada, Debu kaka, Doll & Minu.

Announcements NAFO ‘Samanwayam’ he 10th anniversary of NAFO Kuwait will be celebrated on May 10 at the American International School Auditorium from 6pm onwards. Indian Ambassador Satish C Mehta will inaugurate the event. Former Indian Ambassador to the US and the United Nations T P Sreenivasan and NSS Director Board Member Pandalam Sivankutty will be guests of honor. NAFO will also present an eclectic dance drama ‘Krishna’ which is conceived and choreographed by Padmashri Shobana. She will be accompanied by a 15-member troupe from Kalarpana Chennai and supported by Oscar winner Rasool Pookkutty. It has voice-overs in English by film personalities such as Irrfan Khan, Konkonasen, Shabaana Azmi, John Abraham, Prakash Raj, Stephen Devassy and P Rajeevan.


Konkani musical show nited Friends Club - Kuwait presents Kuwait Trio’s Konkani Songit Sanz (a Konkani musical evening) with fun filled comedy and songs, starring: Gracy Rodrigues, Clemmie Pereira, Irene Vaz, Lucy Aranha, Espy Crasto, Bab. Agnel, Katty de Navelim, Salu Faleiro, Gasper Crasto, Braz de Parra, Anthony D’Silva, Agnelo Fernandes, Seby & Seby, Zeferino Mendes, Lopes Bros., Comedian Nelson, Laurente Pereira & Cajetan de Sanvordem-Michael D’Silva-Mario de Majorda (Kuwait Trio). The show will be held on Friday, 10th May 2013 at 4 pm at the Indian Community School (Senior), Salmiya, Kuwait. Music will be provided by Maestro Shahu.


KALA-Balakalamela registeration alakalamela-2013, the art and cultural competition for Indian students in Kuwait, organized yearly by KALA-Kuwait is scheduled to be conducted on 3 May 2013 at Indian Public school, Salmiya. The completions are open for Indian students from Class 1 to 12 categorized as Sub Juniors (Class 1-4), Juniors (Class 5-8) and Seniors (9-12). The completions will be held for Bharathanatyam, Mohiniyattam, Folk Dance, Group Dance, Light Music, Classical Music, Fancy Dress, Elocution (English & Malayalam), Essay (English & Malayalam), Recitation (English & Malayalam) in 6 different stages in the venue. The registrations can be done through schools or directly through KALA web site ‘’ or directly handed over to any of the nearest KALA-units, or to sent to our e-mail ‘’ on or before 20 April 2013.



IMAX film program Monday: ** 9:30am Showtime Available for Groups Flight of Butterflies 3D 10:30am, 8:30pm Tornado Alley 3D11:30am, 5:30pm, 7:30pm To The Arctic 3D 12:30pm, 9:30pm Born to be Wild 3D6:30pm

Write to us Send to What’s On upcoming events, birthdays or celebrations by email: Fax: 24835619 / 20


ader Abdul Hameed Al-Sayegh announced forming a special forum for German Shepherd lovers and owners in Kuwait with hopes that the forum would soon turn into a special club. “Lack of enough information about this breed of dogs, up keeping, training and treating them

was behind founding this forum”, said Al-Sayegh noting that his story with German Shepherds started in May, 2012 when he got his first dog and started asking his friend, Adel Al-Falah about how to look after it. “I put some photos on Instagram and was over the moon on learning that many people

share my hobby in Kuwait”, said AlSayegh noting that the forum now includes eight more people beside him and Al-Falah. Al-Sayegh added that the forum has a special Instagram account at: group-gds-kw and that he hoped more people would join it and that it would get enough support and spon-

sorship from the media as well as private companies. The forum includes, Bader Abdul Hameed Al_Sayegh, Saleh Al-Falah, Ali Al-Daihan, Khaled Fauzi, Khaled Al-Qo’oud, Saleh Shehab, Ahmed Al-Sharrah, Mohammed AlAwwad, Ali Al-Kandari and Yousif AlKandari.

ASSET bags 3 international toppers from Indian Education School Kuwait


hree brilliant students from Indian Educational School came out as three International Toppers in this year’s winter round for Asset Exam. Last Thursday 18th April 2013, the prize distribution ceremony took place in Indian Education School auditorium and the three toppers namely Abhinaya K Srinivasan of class 6, Duvvuri R Pratyusha of class 9 and Himag B Vaidya of class 10 was rewarded with Crystal Trophies and Certificates. All the three toppers topped in mathematics in the international level for Asset. The principal of IES, Premkumar was very pleased and proud of the performance of the school and also encouraged all the students to participate in Asset exam which will help them in understanding their strength and weakness. He emphasized that reasons why he encourages Asset as he likes the pattern and concept of the test very much especially the AQAD (Asset Question A Day) where one question from Maths or Science or English is sent to the official Email ID of the school as well to the Asset coordinators. Premkumar also thanked Education Advisor, Ms Sanghita Deb-the Educational Advisor on behalf of Asset for all their services and hard work that they have provided to reinforce the conceptual studies among the students of the school. On the other hand-Asset honoured the Asset Coordinators- Mrs Sheeba Balraj and Mrs Uma Maheshwari with gifts for conducting the Asset exam with perfection and for encouraging the students for participation. Ms Sanghita thanked Premkumar and the entire IES for their active participation in conducting Asset and for encouraging the active participation of the students. She expressed her aspiration of much more participation and consequently advent of more International toppers form IES in the coming years. IES has been participating in the Asset exam for last 4 years and this year their results has been the best. This year IES has got maximum number of outstanding certificates among all the schools who took

part in the winter round of Asset in Kuwait. ASSET (Assessment of Scholastic Skills through Educational Testing) is the flagship product of Educational Initiatives, Ahmedabad - India. ASSET is a scientifically designed, skill-based assessment developed in India. This diagnostic test has come about after a detailed study of the syllabi of different curriculums and continuous upgrading since last 10 years. Rather than testing rote learning, it focuses on measuring how well SKILLS and CONCEPTS underlying the school syllabus have been learnt by the student. The test provides detailed information on the strengths and weaknesses of individual students, mentions the misconception that each child has and possible remedial action. The results also bring out a similar report for the entire classes. Established in 2001, Educational Initiatives believes in making a difference in education through personalised learning and ensuring that students learn with understanding. Educational Initiatives has over 15 years of expertise in education, with a deep understanding of child psychology and efficient methods of teaching. El believes in learning through understanding. El has developed several other products that address the various needs of assessments like the interactive internet based tools Mindspark; a solution for continuous and comprehensive evaluation Detailed Assessment; CCE Certificate Course; Teacher Evaluation Program, Teacher Sheets and more. El is also working with leading organizations like World Bank, Michael and Susan Dell Foundation, Google, Azim Premji Foundation, Duke University, USA and is doing large scale assessment projects with various State Governments. EL is also recognized as an official Supplement Education Service provider in Texas, USA. Apart from the offices in Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Bangalore, Delhi and Hyderabad, EL also has presence in UAE, Kuwait, Singapore, Bangladesh and Bhutan.

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

W H AT ’ S O N


‘Jai Ho’ Sukhwinder Singh to perform in Kuwait


nternationally acclaimed playback singer Sukhwinder Singh, aka Sukhi, will be performing in Kuwait on May 10. The mega musical extravaganza, organized by Apna Bharat Society Kuwait and Eternity, will feature a group of 19 artistes along with the Oscar winning Jai Ho sung by Sukhwinder Singh who will be performing for the first time in Kuwait. The Amritsar-born Bollywood singer traveled extensively to learn world music after his earlier efforts in music went unnoticed. Now over a 100 films to his credit including this year’s Matru Ki Bijlee Ka Mandola, Sukhwinder Singh has immortalized his voice with his unique rendering of high note numbers. The show in Kuwait, titled “Jai Ho” Sukhwinder Singh live-in concert will be at Mansooriya Abbas Al-Arabi hall on Friday May 10, from 6.30 pm onwards. The event is organized with the help of

Sebamed goes Instagram

Zain Telecom, Mutawa & Sahni, City Bus group, Nuna Counseling, Al-Zayani group Jaguar, OSN, Honest Center, 3 Horses, Al-Yasra, Al-Mullah Exchange, Jet Airways, Crowne Plaza, Creative Indian Association. Sharif Rangrej said this would be the greatest Indian show in Kuwait in terms of the number of participants, sound effects, cultural and the expected audience.


e are glad to inform you that we have launched our site on instagram. Follow us on @sebamedkuwait and (hashtag) #sebamedkuwait. We plan to launch a contest about the daily life with sebamed involving all family members, so follow us for more details, for the weekly contest and prizes. See page 7 For Details On Sebamed Contest.. Be Ready.. Join Us.. All Are Welcome.

Information EMBASSY OF AUSTRALIA The Australian Embassy Kuwait does not have a visa or immigration department. All processing of visas and immigration matters in conducted by The Australian Consulate-General in Dubai. Email: (VFS) (Visa Office); Tel: +971 4 355 1958 (VFS) - +971 4 508 7200 (Visa Office); Fax: +971 4 355 0708 (Visa Office). In Kuwait applications can be lodged at the Australian Visa Application Centre 4B 1st Floor, Al-Banwan Building Al-Qibla Area, Ali Al-Salem Street, opposite the Central Bank of Kuwait, Kuwait City, Kuwait. Working hours and days: 09:30 - 17:30; Sunday - Thursday. Or visit their website www.vfs-au-gcc-com for more information. Kuwait citizens can apply for tourist visas on-line at visa/e676.htm. nnnnnnn

EMBASSY OF CANADA The Embassy of Canada in Kuwait does not have a visa or immigration department. All processing of visa and immigration matters including enquiries is conducted by the Canadian Embassy in Abu Dhabi, UAE. Individuals who are interested in working, studying, visiting or immigrating to Canada should contact the Canadian Embassy in Abu Dhabi, website: or, E-mail: The Embassy of Canada is located at Villa 24, Al-Mutawakei St, Block 4 in Da’aiyah. Please visit our website at The Embassy of Canada is open from 07:30 to 15:30 Sunday through Thursday. The reception is open from 07:30 to 12:30. Consular services for Canadian citizens are provided from 09:00 until 12:00, Sunday through Wednesday. nnnnnnn

A wedding ceremony was held at the house of Khalid Walid Al-Alban who wedded the daughter of Falah Nasser Al-Shbak. Family members, ambassadors and guests attended the ceremony.

EMBASSY OF CYPRUS In its capacity as EU Local Presidency in the State of Kuwait, the Embassy of the Republic of Cyprus, on behalf of the Member States of the EU and associated States participating in the Schengen cooperation, would like to announce that as from 2nd October 2012 all Schengen States’ Consulates in Kuwait will use the Visa Information System (VIS). The VIS is a central database for the exchange of data on shortstay (up to three months) visas between Schengen States. The main objectives of the VIS are to facilitate visa application procedures and checks at external border as well as to enhance security. The VIS will contain all the Schengen visa applications lodged by an applicant over five years and the decisions taken by any Schengen State’s consulate. This will allow applicants to establish more easily the lawful use of previous visas and their bona fide status. For the purpose of the VIS, applicants will be required to provide their biometric data (fingerprints and digital photos) when applying for a Schengen visa. It is a simple and discreet procedure that only takes a few minutes. Biometric data, along with the data provided in the Schengen visa application form, will be recorded in the VIS central database. Therefore, as from 2nd October 2012, first-time applicants will have to appear in person when lodging the application, in order to provide their fingerprints. For subsequent applications within 5 years the fingerprints can be copied from the previous application file in the VIS. The Cypriot Presidency would like to assure the people of Kuwait and all its permanent citizens that the Member States and associated States participating in the Schengen cooperation, have taken all necessary technical measures to facilitate the rapid examination and the efficient processing of visa applications and to ensure a quick and discreet procedure for the implementation of the new VIS. nnnnnnn

EMBASSY OF VATICAN The Apostolic Nunciature (Embassy of the Holy See, Vatican in Kuwait presents its compliments to Kuwait Times Newspaper, and has the honor to inform the same that the Apostolic Nunciature has moved to a new location in Kuwait City. Please find below the new address: Yarmouk, Block 1, Street 2, Villa No: 1. P.O.Box 29724, Safat 13158, Kuwait. Tel: 965 25337767, Fax: 965 25342066. Email: nnnnnnn

Breakfast meeting with dynamic stalwarts

EMBASSY GREECE The Embassy of Greece in Kuwait has the pleasure to announce that visa applications must be submitted to Schengen Visa Application Centre (VFS office) located at 12th floor, Al-Naser Tower, Fahad Al-Salem Street, AlQibla area, Kuwait City, (Parking at Souk Watia). For information please call 22281046 from 08:30 to 17:00 (Sunday to Thursday). Working hours: Submission from 08:30 to 15:30. Passport collection from 16:00 to 17:00. For visa applications please visit the following website nnnnnnn

Rave 2013, a spectacular dance-music show was held at Marina Hall, Jleeb AlShuyoukh last Friday. The show, organized by Lalson Pereira and Anoop Manuel of Heart Beatz school of dance, was inaugurated by renowned actress and dancer Shamna Kasim.


ndian Frontliners has organized for a “Breakfast Meeting with Dynamic Stalwarts” with Honble Justice Dr A.R.Lakshmanan & Dr R.Seetharaman, CEO of Doha Bank Group, on Friday, 3rd May 2013 from 9 to 11.30 am.

Venue: Kuwait Medical Association Hall/Auditorium Please register yourself to join the interaction with Justice Lakshmanan on “Social Justice” and with Dr. R.Seetharaman motivation of youth “come on ..come on youth..!”

EMBASSY OF ALBANIA The Embassy of the Republic of Albania to the State of Kuwait would like to inform that on 03.04.2013, the new Albanian Ambassador, Kujtim Morina presented credential letters to His Highness, the Amir of the State of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah. The address of the embassy is the same: Al - Zahra, Block 8, Street 802, Villa 169, Kuwait,P.O.BOX 3090, Safat 13131. The ebassy offers consular services as well. Working hours are from 9:00 to 14:00, Sunday through Thursday.

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013


00:45 Crocodile Feeding Frenzy 01:35 Animal Airport 02:25 Wildest Latin America 03:15 Wildest Islands 04:05 Into The Pride 04:55 Animal Airport 05:45 Wildest Latin America 06:35 Wildlife SOS 07:00 The Really Wild Show 07:25 My Cat From Hell 08:15 Dogs 101 09:10 Panda Adventures With Nigel Marven 10:05 Wildest Islands 11:00 Animal Cops Houston 11:55 Call Of The Wildman 12:20 Wildlife SOS 12:50 Wild Africa Rescue 13:45 Animal Precinct 14:40 Wildest Islands 15:30 Orangutan Island 16:00 The Really Wild Show 16:30 Dogs 101 17:25 Dick ‘n’ Dom Go Wild 18:20 Must Love Cats 19:15 Monkey Life 19:40 Rescue Vet 20:10 Call Of The Wildman 20:35 Orangutan Island 21:05 Wildest Africa 22:00 Ned Bruha: Skunk Whisperer 22:25 Ned Bruha: Skunk Whisperer 22:55 My Cat From Hell 23:50 Animal Cops Phoenix

00:20 Cash In The Attic 01:10 Gok’s Fashion Fix 02:00 DIY SOS 02:25 Daily Cooks Challenge 03:25 Celebrity MasterChef 04:15 Vacation Vacation Vacation 04:40 Bargain Hunt: Famous Finds 05:25 DIY SOS 05:50 Antiques Roadshow 06:45 Daily Cooks Challenge 07:15 DIY SOS 07:40 Cash In The Attic 08:05 Cash In The Attic 08:30 Homes Under The Hammer 09:25 Bargain Hunt 10:10 Antiques Roadshow 11:00 Extreme Makeover: Home Edition 11:40 Celebrity MasterChef 12:30 Vacation Vacation Vacation 13:00 Come Dine With Me 13:50 Gok’s Fashion Fix 14:40 Bargain Hunt: Famous Finds 15:25 Antiques Roadshow 16:15 Extreme Makeover: Home Edition 17:00 Homes Under The Hammer 17:55 The Good Cook 18:20 Baking Mad With Eric Lanlard 19:10 New Scandinavian Cooking 19:40 Come Dine With Me 20:35 Extreme Makeover: Home Edition 21:20 Antiques Roadshow 22:15 Bargain Hunt 23:00 Homes Under The Hammer 23:55 Cash In The Attic

00:15 00:45 01:30 01:55 02:20 02:45 03:00 03:20 03:45 04:10 04:35 05:00 05:25 06:00 06:25 06:50 07:15 07:40 08:05

Duck Dodgers Wacky Races What’s New Scooby-Doo? What’s New Scooby-Doo? The Flintstones Tom & Jerry Tales What’s New Scooby-Doo? Taz-Mania The Looney Tunes Show Tom & Jerry Tales Johnny Bravo Bananas In Pyjamas Jelly Jamm Ha Ha Hairies Bananas In Pyjamas Lazytown Krypto: The Super Dog Baby Looney Tunes Gerald McBoing Boing

08:30 08:55 09:45 10:10 10:35 11:00 11:25 11:50 12:40 13:00 13:25 13:50 14:20 14:45 15:10 15:35 16:00 16:25 16:50 17:15 17:40 18:05 18:30 18:55 19:20 19:45 20:10 20:35 21:00 21:25 21:50 22:15

Cartoonito Tales Lazy Town Baby Looney Tunes Krypto: The Super Dog Cartoonito Tales Jelly Jamm Gerald McBoing Boing Lazy Town Jelly Jamm Tom & Jerry Kids A Pup Named Scooby-Doo Moomins Sylvester & Tweety Mysteries Tiny Toon Adventures The 13 Ghosts Of Scooby-Doo Taz-Mania Tom & Jerry Tales Moomins The Garfield Show The Looney Tunes Show Tiny Toon Adventures Taz-Mania Sylvester & Tweety Mysteries The 13 Ghosts Of Scooby-Doo Pink Panther And Pals The Looney Tunes Show Taz-Mania Puppy In My Pocket What’s New Scooby-Doo? Looney Tunes Dexter’s Laboratory Tom & Jerry Tales

00:30 Grim Adventures Of... 01:20 Johnny Test 02:10 Ben 10: Ultimate Alien 03:00 The Amazing World Of Gumball 03:25 Regular Show 03:50 Ben 10: Omniverse 04:15 Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated 04:40 Powerpuff Girls 05:05 Evil Con Carne 05:30 Cow & Chicken 06:00 Casper’s Scare School 06:30 Angelo Rules 07:00 Dreamworks Dragons: Riders Of Berk 07:25 The Amazing World Of Gumball 07:45 Scooby Doo! Mystery Incorporated 08:10 Evil Con Carne 08:55 Adventure Time 09:45 Regular Show 10:35 Angelo Rules 11:25 Ben 10: Ultimate Alien 12:15 Hero 108 13:05 Mucha Lucha ! 13:30 Angelo Rules 14:20 Evil Con Carne 15:10 Ben 10 16:00 Johnny Test 16:35 Scooby Doo! Mystery Incorporated 17:00 Ben 10 Omniverse 17:25 Dreamworks Dragons: Riders Of Berk 17:50 The Amazing World Of Gumball

00:40 07:00 07:50 08:45 09:40 10:05 10:30 10:55 11:25 11:50 12:20 12:45 13:40 14:35 15:05 15:30 16:00 16:55 17:50 18:45 19:40 20:05 20:35 21:00

American Chopper Mythbusters Soul Food Family Flying Wild Alaska Border Security Auction Hunters Baggage Battles How Do They Do It? How It’s Made Crash Course Crash Course Overhaulin’ 2012 Fifth Gear Border Security Auction Hunters Baggage Battles Moonshiners Flying Wild Alaska Mythbusters Sons Of Guns How Do They Do It? How It’s Made Auction Hunters Baggage Battles

21:30 Gold Rush - Season 3 Specials 22:25 Jungle Gold 23:20 One Car Too Far

00:05 The Tech Show 00:30 Weird Connections 01:00 Nextworld 01:50 Sci-Fi Saved My Life 05:15 Gadget Show - World Tour 05:40 The Tech Show 06:05 Storm Chasers 07:00 X-Machines 07:50 Things That Move 08:40 Gadget Show - World Tour 09:05 The Tech Show 09:30 Smash Lab 10:25 Nextworld 11:15 Kings Of Construction 12:05 The World’s Strangest UFO Stories 13:00 Things That Move 13:25 Things That Move 13:50 Patent Bending 14:20 Gadget Show - World Tour 14:45 The Tech Show 15:10 X-Machines 16:00 Punkin Chunkin 2010 16:55 Ecopolis 17:45 Man-Made Marvels Asia 18:35 Race To Mars 19:30 X-Machines 20:20 Things That Move 21:10 Gadget Show - World Tour 21:35 The Tech Show 22:00 X-Machines 22:50 The Colony 23:40 Gadget Show - World Tour

00:10 00:35 01:25 02:15 03:05 03:55 04:45 05:35 06:00 06:25 06:40 07:05 07:55 08:45 09:35 10:25 11:15 12:05 12:30 13:20 13:45 14:35 15:25 15:50 16:15 16:40 17:00 17:30 18:20 19:10 20:00 20:25 21:15 21:40 22:05 22:30 22:55 23:45

Stitch A Kind Of Magic Replacements Emperor’s New School A Kind Of Magic Replacements Emperor’s New School A Kind Of Magic Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Doc McStuffins Suite Life On Deck A.N.T Farm Jessie Good Luck Charlie Austin And Ally Shake It Up Suite Life On Deck Hannah Montana Wizards Of Waverly Place Jessie A.N.T. Farm Austin And Ally Good Luck Charlie Jessie Shake It Up A.N.T. Farm Austin And Ally Suite Life On Deck Jonas Sonny With A Chance Jessie Wizards Of Waverly Place Phil Of The Future Hannah Montana Jonas Los Angeles Sonny With A Chance Wizards Of Waverly Place Hannah Montana

06:00 Kid vs Kat 06:10 American Dragon 06:35 Iron Man Armoured Adventures 07:00 Kickin It 07:25 Phineas And Ferb 08:15 Almost Naked Animals 08:40 Slugterra 09:05 Scaredy Squirrel 09:30 Ultimate Spider-Man 09:55 Zeke & Luther 10:20 Kick Buttowski 10:45 I’m In The Band 11:10 Pokemon: BW Rival Destinies 11:35 Rated A For Awesome 12:00 Mr. Young


12:25 American Dragon 12:50 Kick Buttowski 13:20 Pair Of Kings 13:45 Zeke & Luther 14:10 Rekkit Rabbit 14:35 I’m In The Band 15:00 Phineas And Ferb 15:25 Almost Naked Animals 15:50 Rekkit Rabbit 16:15 Pair Of Kings 16:40 Mr. Young 17:05 Crash & Bernstein 17:30 Max Steel 18:00 Kickin It 18:25 Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja 18:35 Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja 18:50 Phineas And Ferb 19:40 Mr. Young 20:05 Pair Of Kings 20:30 Zeke & Luther 20:55 I’m In The Band 21:20 Rated A For Awesome 21:45 Rekkit Rabbit 22:10 Phineas And Ferb 22:35 Scaredy Squirrel 23:00 Programmes Start At 6:00am KSA

00:30 01:25 04:10 05:05 06:00 07:50 08:20 09:15 10:15 12:05 13:05 14:05 York 15:00 15:30 16:30 17:00 18:00 19:00 20:00 21:00 22:00 23:00

Dirty Soap E! Investigates THS Extreme Close-Up THS Style Star E! News Married To Jonas THS Ice Loves Coco Giuliana & Bill Kourtney & Kim Take New Style Star THS Extreme Close-Up Fashion Police E! News E!es Ice Loves Coco Chasing The Saturdays Kourtney And Kim Take Miami E!es

00:05 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 00:30 Heat Seekers 00:55 Outrageous Food 01:20 Unwrapped 01:45 Iron Chef America 03:25 Unique Eats 03:50 Food Crafters 04:15 United Tastes Of America 04:40 Chopped 05:30 Iron Chef America 06:10 Unwrapped 07:00 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 07:50 Unique Eats 08:15 Kid In A Candy Store 08:40 Andy Bates American Street Feasts 09:05 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 09:30 The Next Iron Chef 10:20 Extra Virgin 11:10 Everyday Italian 11:35 Unwrapped 12:00 Chef Hunter 12:50 Grill It! With Bobby Flay 13:15 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 14:05 Extra Virgin 14:30 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 15:20 Guy’s Big Bite 15:45 Chopped 16:35 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 17:00 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 17:25 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 18:15 Symon’s Suppers 18:40 Guy’s Big Bite 19:30 Chopped 21:10 Iron Chef America 22:00 Reza’s African Kitchen 22:50 Andy Bates American Street Feasts 23:15 Andy Bates American Street Feasts

00:05 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 00:30 Heat Seekers 00:55 Outrageous Food 01:20 Unwrapped 01:45 Iron Chef America 02:35 Iron Chef America 03:25 Unique Eats 03:50 Food Crafters 04:15 United Tastes Of America 04:40 Chopped 05:30 Iron Chef America 06:10 Unwrapped 06:35 Unwrapped 07:00 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 07:25 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 07:50 Unique Eats 08:15 Kid In A Candy Store 08:40 Andy Bates American Street Feasts 09:05 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 09:30 The Next Iron Chef 10:20 Extra Virgin 10:45 Extra Virgin 11:10 Everyday Italian 11:35 Unwrapped 12:00 Chef Hunter 12:50 Grill It! With Bobby Flay 13:15 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 13:40 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 14:05 Extra Virgin 14:30 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 14:55 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 15:20 Guy’s Big Bite 15:45 Chopped 16:35 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 17:00 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 17:25 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 17:50 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 18:15 Symon’s Suppers 18:40 Guy’s Big Bite 19:05 Guy’s Big Bite 19:30 Chopped 20:20 Chopped 21:10 Iron Chef America 22:00 Reza’s African Kitchen 22:25 Reza’s African Kitchen 22:50 Andy Bates American Street Feasts

00:30 01:20 02:05 02:55 03:45 04:30 05:20 06:10 07:00 07:50 08:40 09:05 09:30 10:20 11:10 12:00 12:50 13:15 13:40 14:30 15:20 15:45 16:10 17:00 17:50 18:40 19:30 20:20 21:10 22:00 22:50 23:40

The Haunted Dr G: Medical Examiner Who On Earth... Couples Who Kill Scorned: Crimes Of Passion The Haunted Dr G: Medical Examiner Disappeared Mystery Diagnosis Street Patrol Real Emergency Calls Who On Earth Did I Marry? On The Case With Paula Zahn Murder Shift Disappeared Mystery Diagnosis Street Patrol Street Patrol Forensic Detectives On The Case With Paula Zahn Real Emergency Calls Who On Earth Did I Marry? Disappeared Murder Shift Forensic Detectives On The Case With Paula Zahn Disappeared Nightmare Next Door Couples Who Kill Deadly Sins Who On Earth... I Almost Got Away With It

00:00 BBC World News 01:00 Newsday 01:30 Our World 02:00 Newsday 02:30 Asia Business Report 02:45 Sport Today 03:00 Newsday 03:30 India Business Report 04:00 BBC World News 04:30 Asia Business Report 04:45 Sport Today 05:00 BBC World News 05:30 Asia Business Report 05:45 Sport Today 06:00 BBC World News 06:30 Hardtalk 07:00 BBC World News 07:30 World Business Report 07:45 BBC World News 08:30 World Business Report 08:45 BBC World News 09:30 World Business Report 09:45 BBC World News 10:30 World Business Report 10:45 BBC World News 11:30 Hardtalk 12:00 BBC World News 12:30 World Business Report 12:45 Sport Today 13:00 BBC World News 14:00 GMT With George Alagiah 15:00 BBC World News 15:30 World Business Report 15:45 Sport Today 16:00 Impact With Mishal Husain 17:30 Hardtalk 18:00 Global With John Sopel 19:30 World Business Report 19:45 Sport Today 20:00 BBC World News 20:30 BBC Focus On Africa 21:00 World News Today With Zeinab Badawi 22:30 World Business Report 22:45 Sport Today 23:00 Business Edition With Tanya Beckett 23:30 Hardtalk

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The Journey Begins Again Secret In The Lake Steppe Fever Gone to save the planet, 10 To Russia With Love Papua New Guinea Czech Republic Barrier Reef Balkan Beat Box Amazon Labyrinth Russia: The Bull Of Winter Fez,Morocco England The Black Diamonds The Journey Begins Again Secret In The Lake Steppe Fever Gone to save the planet, 10 To Russia With Love Papua New Guinea Czech Republic Barrier Reef Balkan Beat Box Amazon Labyrinth Ecuador Ancient Tradition Brazil India - Mumbai Greece - Athens Jewel of The Gobi Taboo Mountain Lost In Kazakhstan Mongolian Cowboy Peru Italy Bilby Release Pacha Massive Empire of The Children of The

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Man-Eater of The Congo World’s Weirdest Planet Carnivore Ultimate Animal Countdown When Crocs Ate Dinosaurs Shark Men Brutal Killers Planet Carnivore Ultimate Animal Countdown When Crocs Ate Dinosaurs Built For The Kill World’s Weirdest Predator CSI The Lion Ranger Monster Fish Ultimate Animal Countdown Amazonia’s Giant Jaws Built For The Kill World’s Weirdest Predator CSI Monster Fish Ultimate Animal Countdown Amazonia’s Giant Jaws Built For The Kill World’s Weirdest


01:15 The Godfather III-18 04:15 True Justice: Vengeance Is Mine-PG15 06:00 The Speed Of Thought-PG15 08:00 Thor-PG15 10:00 Hide And Seek-PG15 12:00 Goal!-PG15 14:00 Thor-PG15 16:00 Ice Road Terror-PG15 18:00 Goal!-PG15 20:00 RoboCop-18 22:00 Beneath The Darkness-PG15

01:00 03:00 PG15 05:00 PG15 07:00 09:00 11:00 12:45 15:00 17:00 19:00 21:15 23:00

A Fall From Grace-PG15 Ike: Countdown To D-DayAn Invisible Sign Of My OwnBlackthorn-PG15 A Fall From Grace-PG15 Arrietty-FAM The Way-PG15 Beverly Hills Chihuahua 2-PG Henry’s Crime-PG15 J. Edgar-PG15 Leaves Of Grass-PG15 Wrath Of The Titans-PG15

00:00 The Cleveland Show 03:00 Hot In Cleveland 03:30 1600 Penn 07:00 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 09:00 Hot In Cleveland 09:30 Two And A Half Men 10:00 The Office 14:00 1600 Penn 14:30 The Office 15:00 Two And A Half Men 18:00 Hot In Cleveland 18:30 Malibu Country 20:00 Don’t Trust The B In Apt. 23 21:00 The Daily Show Global Edition 21:30 The Colbert Report Global Edition 22:30 Louie 23:00 Girls 23:30 Veep

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00:00 01:45 03:15 06:15 Mine 08:00 10:00 12:00 14:00 16:00 18:00 20:00 22:00

Supernatural Scandal Grimm Greek Necessary Roughness Grimm Supernatural Emmerdale Coronation Street The Closer Scandal Burn Notice Necessary Roughness Emmerdale Coronation Street The Ellen DeGeneres Show The Closer Supernatural Emmerdale Coronation Street The Ellen DeGeneres Show The Closer Alphas Once Upon A Time Game Of Thrones Greek

The Keeper The Ward The Godfather III True Justice: Vengeance Is The Speed Of Thought Thor Hide And Seek Goal! Thor Ice Road Terror Goal! RoboCop

00:00 A Few Best Men-PG15 02:00 Sightseers-18 04:00 The Smurfs-PG

06:00 08:00 10:00 12:00 14:00 16:00 18:00 20:00 22:00

12 Dates Of Christmas-PG15 Falling Star-PG15 Barnyard-PG The Smurfs-PG Wild Wild West-PG15 Barnyard-PG The Waterboy-PG15 Arthur-PG15 A Few Best Men-PG15

13:00 Trans World Sport 14:00 Super Rugby 16:00 NRL Premiership 18:00 PGA Tour Highlights 19:00 PGA European Tour Highlights 20:00 AFL Premiership Highlights 21:00 NRL Premiership 23:00 Super Rugby

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Resistance—PG15 Middle Men-18 The Way Back-PG15 Unmatched-PG15 Seabiscuit-PG15 The Great Gatsby-PG Elevator Girl-PG15 Seabiscuit-PG15 Le Divorce-PG15 The Fighter-PG15 Krach-18 The Adjustment Bureau-PG15

00:30 NRL Premiership 02:30 PGA European Tour 07:00 Golfing World 08:00 Top 14 Highlights 08:30 Super Rugby 10:30 World Pool Masters 11:30 World Cup Of Pool 12:30 European Challenge Cup 14:30 Golfing World 15:30 Premier League Darts 19:00 Super League 20:30 ICC Cricket 360 21:00 PGA Tour Highlights 22:00 PGA European Tour Highlights 23:00 AFL Premiership Highlights

01:00 Super 8-PG15 03:00 The Pirates! Band Of MisfitsPG 05:00 Every Jack Has A Jill-PG15 07:00 Taken From Me: The Tiffany Rubin Story-PG 09:00 Spy Kids: All The Time In The World-PG 11:00 Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol-PG15 13:30 Once Brothers-PG15 15:00 Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Pt.2-PG15 17:15 Spy Kids: All The Time In The World-PG 19:00 The Avengers-PG15 21:30 Your Sister’s Sister-18 23:15 Bel Ami-18

01:15 Little Einsteins: Rocket’s Firebird Rescue 02:45 Emperor’s Secret 04:30 A Venetian Rascal Goes To America 06:00 Rebound 08:00 Quest For A Heart 10:00 Marley & Me: The Puppy Years 11:30 A Venetian Rascal Goes To America 13:00 Queen Of The Swallows 14:30 Lemony Snicket’s A Series Of Unfortunate 16:15 The Adventures Of Scooter The Penguin 18:00 Marley & Me: The Puppy Years

00:00 02:00 04:00 06:26 PG15 08:00 10:00 12:00 14:00 16:00 18:00 20:06 22:17

Waiting For Forever-PG15 Jack And Jill-PG15 War Horse-PG15 Glee: The Concert Movie-

01:00 03:00 05:00 07:00 11:00 12:00 14:00 14:30 15:00 19:00 20:00 21:00

Super Rugby NRL Premiership NRL Premiership Snooker Trans World Sport Live NRL Premiership ICC Cricket 360 Futbol Mundial Live Snooker Trans World Sport Super Rugby Highlights Live Snooker

01:00 02:00 06:00 06:30 07:00 12:00

Trans World Sport Snooker World Championship ICC Cricket 360 Futbol Mundial PGA Tour WWE Vintage Collection

StreetDance 2-PG15 A Monster In Paris-PG Jack And Jill-PG15 A Mother’s Choice-PG15 StreetDance 2-PG15 Hugo-PG Battleship-PG15 The Samaritan-18

01:00 UAE National Race Day Series 02:00 Triahlon UK 03:00 Advanture Challenge 04:00 US Bass Fishing 05:00 NHL 07:00 WWE Bottom Line 08:00 WWE Experience 09:00 Ping Pong World Championships 10:00 US Bass Fishing 11:00 NHL 13:00 UAE National Race Day Series 14:00 WWE NXT 15:00 WWE SmackDown 17:00 Ping Pong World Championships 18:00 US Bass Fishing 19:00 UFC Prelims 21:00 UFC

00:00 01:00 01:30 02:00 02:30 03:00 04:00 05:00 05:30 06:00 07:00 07:30 08:00 09:00 09:30 10:00 10:30 11:00 12:00 12:30 13:00 14:00 14:30 15:00 16:00 16:30 17:00 18:00 18:30 19:00 20:00 20:30 21:00 22:00 22:30 23:30

Banger Boys Cajun Pawn Stars Cajun Pawn Stars Shipping Wars Storage Wars The Men Who Built America Soviet Storm: WWII In The East Cajun Pawn Stars Cajun Pawn Stars Ancient Aliens Pawn Stars Storage Wars Soviet Storm: WWII In The East Pawn Stars American Restoration Pawn Stars Storage Wars Ancient Aliens Shipping Wars Storage Wars Banger Boys Pawn Stars American Restoration Soviet Storm: WWII In The East Shipping Wars Storage Wars Banger Boys Pawn Stars American Restoration Soviet Storm: WWII In The East Pawn Stars Storage Wars Ancient Aliens Pawn Stars The Men Who Built America Shipping Wars

01:15 The Yellow Rolls-Royce-PG 03:15 The Omega Man-PG 04:55 The Adventures Of Huckleberry...-FAM 07:00 Stars In My Crown-U 08:30 In The Good Old Summertime-FAM 10:10 San Quentin-PG 11:25 The Sheepman-FAM 12:55 The Omega Man-PG 14:35 Ask Any Girl-FAM 16:15 Green Mansions-FAM

Classifieds MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013



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Sharing accommodation available for decent bachelor or family non smoking, Amman street, one big room, opposite to Al Rashed Hospital. Contact: 66232356. (C 4395) 28-4-2013 For ladies or bachelor Filipino only near big Jamiya Farwaniya. Available on April 25, 2013. Contact: 66158188. 25-4-2013


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Nissan Pathfinder 2005, color: pearl white, engine gear and body in very good condition. Price KD 2,425, negotiable. Please call 99683415. (C 4393)


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Nissan Infiniti G37, 2009 model, 6 cylinder, automatic, 6 CD changer, mobile connectivity, rear view camera, sunroof, send color, GPS, excellent condition, 60,000 kms. KD 7,000. Contact: 99742340. (C 4394)


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Audi A6 (S-Line) V6 model 2007 0 3.2 engine, black color, beige leather inside full options + nav, mileage

km 64,000 with accurate service history by dealer. Price KD 6,000. Call 99283882. (C 4397) Mercedes SL 500 convertible (year 2004) blue sky color - beige leather inside, low mileage km 48,000 include 18 inch AMG wheels + rear wing, like new, price KD 9,000 (firm). Call 90080013. (C 4396) 28-4-2013 Delivery van box, Nissan Frezer 2004, Mazda 2005. Ph: 66052331. (C 4391) Chevrolet Lumina 5 model 2008, 43,000 km, excellent condition, one owner, original paint, full options, price KD 3,100, negotiable. Contact: 66416391. (C 4392) 27-4-2013 SITUATION VACANT Required for a Kuwaiti family a female cook, salary KD 100. Contact: 99304076. (C 4388)

MATRIMONIAL Marthomite MCA Boy 28/179, employed as Web Marketing Executive with a reputed automobile company in Kuwait, invites proposals from professionally qualified employed girls. Contact: Looking for groom for an Ezhava, Hindu girl (Msc Botany) 25 years, hailing from Malappuram Dist (Parappanangadi), interested please contact email: (C4390) CHANGE OF NAME

Required driver for a Kuwaiti family, 3 years experience, salary KD 100. Contact: 99304076. (C 4389) 25-4-2013

I, Kamalapuram Basheer, Indian Passport No: K9684632 change my name to Shaikh Basheer Ahmed. (C 4398) 29-4-2013

No: 15793




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Directorate General of Civil Aviation Home Page (


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MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

stars CROSSWORD 174

STAR TRACK Aries (March 21-April 19) Your energy level could fluctuate today which could lead to moments of melancholy or general fatigue. You will probably have the desire to isolate yourself to some extent even from a close companion or live-in partner. You should maintain a positive attitude and face life in a positive way. Otherwise, you will become frustrated and dull company. Mixed emotions may be the theme of the day, and trying to sort them out verbally can be far more effort than it’s really worth and ultimately an unsatisfying process. If you find yourself on the wrong end of an argument with your partner then try to patch things up as best you can and let circumstances take care of the rest.

Taurus (April 20-May 20) This is a really good time of the month to get noticed, so get out there and take charge. Things will generally get busier, reserve extra time on your schedule for unanticipated appointments or prolonged, profitable personal engagements. The spotlight turns up, and you’re on stage — perform! If you’re single an opportunity for a romance may arise which is likely to be exciting. This is a time for getting a little loose and wild with friends, going dancing, or doing something out of the ordinary that is stimulating and fun. You could meet interesting new people and are more open to people who are quite different from yourself.

Gemini (May 21-June 20)

ACROSS 1. An ancient Hebrew unit of capacity equal to 10 baths or 10 ephahs. 4. A pair of adhesive patches worn to cover the nipples of exotic dancers and striptease performers. 11. On, to, or at the top. 15. Any of various primates with short tails or no tail at all. 16. A small flat triangular bone in front of the knee that protects the knee joint. 17. The actions and activities assigned to or required or expected of a person or group. 18. (British) A waterproof raincoat made of rubberized fabric. 19. A large order of insects having a single pair of wings and sucking or piercing mouths. 20. A river that rises in western New Mexico and flows westward through southern Arizona to become a tributary of the Colorado River. 21. According to the Old Testament he was a pagan king of Israel and husband of Jezebel (9th century BC). 23. The syllable naming the sixth (submediant) note of a major or minor scale in solmization. 24. Relating to or like or divided into areolae. 26. A form of entertainment that enacts a story by a sequence of images giving the illusion of continuous movement. 28. A chronic inflammatory collagen disease affecting connective tissue (skin or joints). 29. (`cease' is a noun only in the phrase `without cease') End v 1. 30. (combining form) Former. 32. A member of a Mayan people of southwestern Guatemala. 34. Hormones (estrogen and progestin) are given to postmenopausal women. 35. A beverage made by steeping tea leaves in water. 38. (botany) Outer tissue of bark. 43. National capital of Solomon Islands. 44. A small constellation in the northern hemisphere near Cygnus and Draco. 45. Inquire about. 46. Divulge information or secrets. 49. Being nine more than forty. 50. A port in northwestern Israel on the Bay of Acre. 52. An intensely radioactive metallic element that occurs in minute amounts in uranium ores. 57. Someone who works (or provides workers) during a strike. 60. The striking of one body against another. 63. A bar of sand. 65. A white metallic element that burns with a brilliant light. 66. Make a gurgling sound as of liquid issuing from a bottle. 68. A metric unit of length equal to 100 meters. 69. The blood group whose red cells carry both the A and B antigens. 72. A condition (mostly in boys) characterized by behavioral and learning disorders. 74. A member of one of the four divisions of the prehistoric Greeks. 77. A Chadic language spoken in northern Nigeria. 79. An independent agency of the United States government responsible for collecting and coordinating intelligence and counterintelligence activities abroad in the national interest. 80. The imperial authority symbolized by a scepter. 81. A Tibetan or Mongolian priest of Lamaism. 82. Consisting of or made of wood of the oak tree. 83. Thin usually unleavened johnnycake made of cornmeal. 84. (Old Testament) The eldest son of Isaac who would have inherited the Covenant that God

made with Abraham and that Abraham passed on to Isaac. DOWN 1. God of love and erotic desire. 2. Large elliptical brightly colored deep-sea fish of Atlantic and Pacific and Mediterranean. 3. A summary that repeats the substance of a longer discussion. 4. Kidney disease characterized by enlarged kidneys containing many cysts. 5. A blue dye obtained from plants or made synthetically. 6. One of the green parts that form the calyx of a flower. 7. Restraint consisting of a rope (or light chain) used to restrain an animal. 8. Water frozen in the solid state. 9. An ache localized in the middle or inner ear. 10. A cut of pork ribs with much of the meat trimmed off. 11. An ancient city in southeastern Greece. 12. An artifact used in making your toilet. 13. Leaf or strip from a leaf of the talipot palm used in India for writing paper. 14. Sweet juicy gritty-textured fruit available in many varieties. 22. Valuable fiber plant of East Indies now widespread in cultivation. 25. Informal terms for a meal. 27. West Indian tree having racemes of fragrant white flowers and yielding a durable timber and resinous juice. 31. A Bantu language closely related to Zulu. 33. Common black European thrush. 36. In an unnatural eery manner. 37. A port city in southwestern Turkey on the Gulf of Antalya. 39. (Sumerian) Water god and god of wisdom. 40. A flat-bottomed volcanic crater that was formed by an explosion. 41. 30 to 300 kilohertz. 42. (Norse mythology) One of the Aesir known for his beauty and skill with bow and skis. 47. Having or denoting a low vocal or instrumental range. 48. A public promotion of some product or service. 51. Emblem usually consisting of a rectangular piece of cloth of distinctive design. 53. A constitutional monarchy in northern Europe. 54. A condition (mostly in boys) characterized by behavioral and learning disorders. 55. A river in north central Switzerland that runs northeast into the Rhine. 56. A plaster now made mostly from Portland cement and sand and lime. 58. A member of the Taracahitian people of central Mexico. 59. Gibberish resembling the sounds of a baby. 61. Genus of sticky herbs with yellow flowers open in morning or evening but closed in bright light. 62. A loud resonant repeating noise. 64. A soft silvery metallic element of the alkali earth group. 67. Clarified butter used in Indian cookery. 70. Designer drug designed to have the effects of amphetamines (it floods the brain with serotonin) but to avoid the drug laws. 71. A man who is the lover of a girl or young woman. 73. East Indian tree bearing a profusion of intense vermilion velvet-textured blooms and yielding a yellow dye. 75. A drug combination found in some over-thecounter headache remedies (Aspirin and Phenacetin and Caffeine). 76. (meaning literally `born') Used to indicate the maiden or family name of a married woman. 78. An associate degree in applied science.

You could confront something that has been hidden, forgotten, or ignored for a long time. Personal power and control are issues for you now, and if you take too much power (i.e. are manipulative and tyrannical) or too little power (i.e. are overly passive and easily victimized), then you will become embroiled in power struggles with others. Support from close friends, family, and the women in your life gives you extra confidence now. This is a good time to mend fences and smooth over problems in your home life. Try to find the positive aspects of situations before looking for the negative. It will get you farther and keep you on steadier ground emotionally.

Cancer (June 21-July 22) Your mind wanders to faraway places, and your imagination is kindled with thoughts of the exotic, mystical, and fantastic. You feel restless and bored by your daily routine. You may be unable to concentrate on mundane matters and you may find yourself daydreaming. If you can’t get away, watch a movie or read a book that will let your mind wander to those places you want to be. Right now you are more magnetic and sexually attractive, and your love life is likely to be both harmonious and satisfying. You experience a positive flow of warmth and friendliness between yourself and others, and you are stimulated and energized by your casual interactions with the opposite sex.

Leo (July 23-August 22) Your recent tendency to be pessimistic finally ceases to be a problem and you switch into optimistic mode by late-afternoon. It’ll be easy to get your plans underway, especially with a little help from your friends. Make sure you pay special attention to an older family member or a child’s needs. A time of emotional growth is what’s it’s about today, when you just naturally attach yourself to larger issues, bigger feelings, and a more open heart. Travel both literally and mentally broadens the mind, so be ready to pick up and go places, even if only in your imagination.

Virgo (August 23-September 22) A deceptive course of affairs in an important area of your life and must take up a lot of your time now if you want to learn who is at the bottom of it. You may be getting angry at the wrong person rather than looking at the source of this perplexing issue. An enemy or two may be lurking in the corridors but to discover who they are you need to look in the right places. Your thoughts turn to love and this is a favorable time to bring out any concerns you have in your personal relationships. Agreements and cooperation can be achieved easily during this time. You readily discuss your personal needs and desires. Also, you are more aware of beauty and may want to rearrange your decor or buy something to beautify your surroundings.

Word Search

Libra (September 23-October 22) Sometimes we fear the consequences of taking bold actions in our lives. If you’re feeling the need to make a bold move in your life, but fear the consequences, move forward with the knowledge that change is going to happen regardless, and if you take control of the situation you can work towards ensuring those changes will be positive. A broader view of your relationships comes easier now, leave the details until there’s time for them later. If you can understand the principle of the things now, you can extrapolate the rest they develop and this is easier than doing it the other way around. Feelings can grow and emotions rise faster than you thought possible at this time.

Scorpio (October 23-November 21) Something you’ve awaited can now be successful. You’ve worked hard and played just as hard as well and in any case you can start to reap the benefits of your efforts and the investment of the past few months. Take care of your health at this time as there’s also a need for relaxation and time out from the daily grind. It’s a time when you are likely to come to a very clear, definite decision about an important relationship at this time. A very good time to let someone know exactly what you want. You are not in the mood to compromise in your plans, ideas, or desires, just don’t shove them down someone’s throat as you’re likely to be disappointed with the response. Use your charm and emotions to emphasize how much you care.

Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) That all-consuming pastime of yours could take a backseat when someone reminds you that he or she has not been receiving nearly enough attention! Think about it: if the shoe was on the other foot, you wouldn’t be feeling too happy. An overdue apology may come your way from a friend or work associate. Relationships are particularly pleasant and productive now, and you will find that relationships formed now work out very well. Cooperation and friendship is strong now, and you may receive a gift or offer from someone that you weren’t expecting.

Capricorn (December 22-January 19) You could be burdened with some external problems and may feel that you don’t have enough energy to solve them. You should not allow yourself feelings of defeat and should continue to persevere. It will be important not neglect your health nor your vitality today in order to prevent complications later. You appear perhaps more charming and refined than usual. Now could be the time to make that date or just step into the front of the line and make yourself known. Also, this can be a time when you are forced to confront and deal with an unhealthy relationship.

Aquarius (January 20- February 18) Health and wealth conspire to put you on the map, so tend your resources and they will tend you. Fitness and energy is as important as what is in your wallet, and that alone can give you the appearance of success. Make sure the daily routine is fine-tuned and you’ll be hearing about it from admirers. Surges of emotion are in the energy of today, may feel like a storm one minute and blue sky’s the next. Try to make sure you don’t get carried away during the stormy moments. Pick up on how others may be feeling before you make any comments today, you may have to tighten your focus if you misjudge a situation so you can find a way to work things out.

Pisces (February 19-March 20) The finer workings of your game plan roll along smoothly and probably get taken for granted if you don’t take extra effort to notice them. Cooperation is a given, and if you give it you will get it. No blame, no strain, no pain. Mutual pats on the back let everyone know that all is in sync, so give them freely. Passion and gut reactions are where your emotions may be today, and you could be inclined to act on the dictates of emotion and desire rather than reason. You could be in a fighting mood both emotionally and physically. Your relationships with your family and the women you are closest to are likely to be uncomfortable today.

Yesterday’s Solution

Yesterday’s Solution

Daily SuDoku

Yesterday’s Solution

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

i n f o r m at i o n For labor-related inquiries and complaints: Call MSAL hotline 128 GOVERNORATE Sabah Hospital


Amiri Hospital


Maternity Hospital


Mubarak Al-Kabir Hospital


Chest Hospital


Farwaniya Hospital


Adan Hospital


Ibn Sina Hospital


Al-Razi Hospital


Physiotherapy Hospital






Sama Safwan Abu Halaifa Danat Al-Sultan

Fahaeel Makka St Abu Halaifa-Coastal Rd Mahboula Block 1, Coastal Rd

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MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

LIFESTYLE F e a t u r e s

Hard-core hiking

Photo shows Banner Peak in the Ansel Adams Wilderness outside Yosemite National Park in California. —AP photos


few loose, fist-sized rocks tumbled by as we hiked down a steep mountain pass over unstable terrain, off trail deep in Yosemite’s wilderness. We tightly gripped the solid rock holds on the side of Stanton Pass to steady ourselves when our feet slipped out from under us. Our guides were two of the world’s most accomplished hikers, Andrew Skurka and Brian Robinson. We were far enough from help that Skurka had reminded everyone that a serious injury here would probably mean the most expensive helicopter ride we would ever have. This was fun. Our group of six hikers had several

Photo shows hikers on a guided backcountry trip in Yosemite National Park near Stubblefield Canyon.

An unnamed lake in Yosemite National Park’s backcountry.

goals for the weeklong trip. One was to get into the backcountry to be in pristine landscapes, far from the traffic and crowds of Yosemite National Park’s developed areas. But more importantly, we wanted to learn skills from our guides to safely traverse wild areas where there are no trails to follow and conditions are rough. Skurka was recognized as adventurer of the year by both National Geographic and Outside magazine and is known for his solo adventures, such as a six-month, 4,700-mile (7,565-kilometer) journey by foot, skis and pack raft in Alaska and the Canadian Yukon, and the 7,775-mile (12,500-kilometer) Sea-to-Sea Route from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Robinson was the first person to hike the Appalachian, Continental Divide and Pacific Crest Trails all in one calendar year: 7,400 miles (11,910 kilometers) in 11 months. Skurka, 32, decided that he wants to share the lessons he learned on those trips, so he started a guiding business. With the help of assistant guides such as Robinson, he teaches everything from what to do when a grizzly bear is charging you at close range to how to keep your feet healthy after punishing them with long distances on rocky, uneven terrain. He also espouses the philosophy of only taking what you need on hiking trips. Because he likes to hike 30-plus miles (more than 48 kilometers) during 12 to 16 hours of travel a day, that usually means carrying much less than the average backpacker. He also wants hikers to depend less on gear and more on their brains to make sure they have safe fun when venturing off trail. A few months before the trip last September, the planning began via a Google group. Skurka gave us spreadsheets to list everything we would take with us and how much it weighed, down to how many ounces a few sheets of toilet paper would add to our packs. We estimated how many calories we would realistically need to eat and took dense foods, such as protein bars, trail mix with nuts and even olive oil, which let us feel full without having too much to carry. With Skurka’s help, we also researched the climate, terrain, route hazards and more, so that we would know exactly what to bring. By doing so, we knew what we needed to be prepared for and were able to stay comfortable without relying on

extra gear that we’d packed “just in case.” For example, by selecting campsites on soft dirt (rather than hard-packed ground that others had already used), that were relatively protected from the elements by trees or boulders, we avoided having to carry heavier sleeping bags. Skurka is a meticulous planner, so even though we had “homework” before the trip, he took care of all the complicated details such as printing maps, getting permits and buying and packing meals. The group going on the trip was intimidating to me for their fitness: an ultra-runner in his 30s who competes in 50- and 100-mile (80- and 161-kilometer races, another ultra-runner in his 50s who barely had any had body fat, a mountain climber, a man in his 50s who runs marathons in well below three hours. I’ve done a lot of hiking and exercise regularly and intensely, but I spend most of my days sitting at a desk. But it wasn’t long after we met in Yosemite’s Tuolumne Meadows in the High Sierra mountains that we were joking with one another and realizing there were no overzealous egos in the group. And despite their status in the hiking community, Skurka and Robinson were laid back and fun to hike with. Because we were confident that we could avoid getting lost by “staying found” through expert navigation, we left the trail system and explored seldom visited parts of Yosemite. We got to see places as aweinspiring as the more famous sights in Yosemite, but there were few signs of civilization around. After about six full days’ hiking, we covered more than 80 miles (129 kilometers), much of it off trail, with about 21,000 feet (6,400 meters) of elevation gain. Fortunately, we all walked out on our own, with Skurka giving some wilderness medical treatment of cuts. I ate the biggest double burger I’d ever had when we got back to Tuolumne Meadows. After the group trip, I had another week to explore the Sierras by myself. The skills I had learned made me confident in venturing off-trail into the wilderness on my own. —AP

Tourists taking photos of Yosemite Falls in Yosemite National Park in California.

Hikers making their way through an area of Yosemite National Park that lacks trails in Stubblefield Canyon.

Dome, the iconic granite peak in Yosemite National Park in California.

Get smart with the new Giordano casual collection

DUBAI: Giordano’s offering for the spring season just got bigger as its new range of clothing for both men and women arrives in store on 1 May. Featuring khaki pants and appealing cotton shirts, the latest releases for the Spring/Summer 2013 collection give customers looking for easyto-wear smart casual clothing even more choices. “At Giordano, we regularly introduce new collections to give our customers plenty of options for creating their own day-to-day casual style,” commented Ishwar Chugani, Managing Director of Giordano Middle East FZE and Executive Director of Giordano International. “We want to make sure that every time they visit our stores across the region, they will find something new, something

wearable, and something that offers great value and style as a wardrobe essential.” The finale pieces for Spring/Summer collection feature new trendy color blocking shirts which can be mixed and matched with essential stretch khakis or the lightweight denims in various fits and washes. For men, Giordano has designed a line that brings a preppy edge to the latespring season. Experiment with a variety of on-trend color-blocked shirts in dobby cloth, 100 per cent cotton plaids, and royal Oxford plaids with white collars and wrinkle-free

Oxford shirts. Pin stripes and micro checks also help jazz up the spring-summer look. Women can recreate the same fresh and fashion-forward feeling by mixing and matching shirts with khaki trousers from the new Giordano collection for Ladies. Shirts for women are available in 100 per cent soft cotton and 100 per cent linen in colors of white, pink or light blue that can be easily paired with cotton-lycra lightweight essential khakis pants. The trendy shirts are a perfect pairing for super tight leggings or soft-touch essential skinny denims. Customers loving Giordano’s ever popular polo

shirts will not be disappointed as new color options are available for their favorite Stripe Polo and the newly launched Griffin Polo too. The latest releases in the new collection are available in Giordano stores starting May 1st 2013. All items in the new collection along with Giordano’s regular range of merchandise can also be purchased online at and will be delivered direct to the customer’s door (United Arab Emirates only) within 48 hours. A Cash-onDelivery option is also available for this service.


MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013




File photo shows lead singer Mick Jagger, left, and Charlie Watts of The Rolling Stones during a performance at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ. (Right) Music fans line up to watch The Rolling Stones perform at Echoplex on April 27, 2013 in Los Angeles. —AP photos

Rolling Stones play surprise LA club gig he Rolling Stones played a surprise show late Saturday at a small club in Los Angeles, days before their north America tour kicks off here next week. The legendary British rock band announced the gig, at the 650capacity Echoplex in LA’s trendy Echo Park neighborhood, via Twitter only hours before the evening show. Tickets were just $20, paid by cash only, and were snapped up within an hour of going on sale. Lucky fans at the front of


the line were given a wrist band and required to show an ID at the door. There was a limit of one ticket per purchaser, the Los Angeles Times reported. The band opened with “You Got me Rockin’” before a 14-song set including “Street Fighting Man” and “Start Me Up,” climaxing with “Brown Sugar” and “Jumpin Jack Flash,” according to a set list posted on its Twitter feed. The rockers posted video of the gig a couple of hours after it ended,

including 69-year-old frontman Mick Jagger whipping up the tiny crowd with his trademark gyrations as the band cranked out “Respectable.” The Stones-which last year marked its 50th anniversary together-is due to open its “50 and Counting” tour at the Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles next week. The group is also set to play in cities including San Jose, Las Vegas, Chicago, and Boston, as well as Toronto in Canada.

Old standards greet fans

Bollywood celebrates

100th birthday

on Jazz Fest’s 2nd day t 101 years old, New Orleans jazz trumpeter Lionel Ferbos opened one of 12 stages on the second day of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. Billy Joel brought the crowds and ended Day 2. Couples danced and some sang along to old jazz standards such as “Back Home In Indiana” and “I Can’t Give You Anything but Love” on Saturday. Ferbos is believed to be the oldest actively working musician in the city. He performs regularly at the Palm Court Jazz Club in the French Quarter. “He epitomizes New Orleans,” said New Orleans resident Medora Monigold, a Jazz Fest veteran and fan of Ferbos. “In a day where the elders are not respected, he reminds us that wisdom and talent can exist at any age.” Monigold enjoyed a plate of seafood casserole and


day included trumpeter and singer Wendell Brunious and singer-pianist Tim Laughlin. Brunious brought couples to their feet as he sang “I Will Never Be the Same” and “Big Chief,” an upbeat number commonly performed at Mardi Gras that had many in the crowd dancing and

Indian Bollywood director and producer Mahesh Bhatt speaks during an interview with AFP at his office in Mumbai. —AFP ne hundred years after the screening of a black-and-white silent film, India’s brash, song-and-danceladen Bollywood film industry celebrates its centenary later this week. The milestone will be marked with the release of “Bombay Talkies”, made up of short commemorative films by four leading directors, while India will be honored as “guest country” at next month’s Cannes festival. Exhibitions in the capital New Delhi are


showcasing a century of cinema, including onscreen kissing scenes that originally fell foul of the censors. It is also a time for reflection on how the industry has evolved, from its early screen adaptations of Hindu mythology to the garish romantic escapism of modern blockbusters. Commercially, cinema is thriving: India produced almost 1,500 movies last year and the industry is expected to grow from $2 billion to $3.6

Bollywood’s movie milestones ollywood is completing a century of movies, which began in 1913 with the first all-Indian feature film “Raja (King) Harishchandra”, a silent, black-andwhite story of a virtuous king from Hindu mythology. As women acting was taboo, young men took on the female roles. Here are six other Hindi hits that have been landmarks for the industry:


“Alam Ara” (Light of the World) - 1931 India’s first “talkie”, this also included the first song in Indian cinema, recorded live as there was not yet playback recording. The last remaining print of the film was destroyed in a fire in 2003. A love story between a prince and a gypsy girl inspired by America musical “Show Boat”, the film was hugely successful. Newspaper reports said police were called in to control cinema crowds. “Mother India” - 1957 Mehboob Khan’s blockbuster depicted the resilience of an Indian woman, while echoing fervent nationalism in the aftermath of India’s independence from British rule. Top star Nargis plays a self-sacrificing mother who raises two sons in a poor village, ultimately gunning one of them down to uphold the community’s honour. For one famous sequence, a farmer agreed to flood his own land. It was the first of just three Indian films nominated for an Oscar in the foreign-language category, which none of them won. “Mughal-e-Azam” (The Greatest of the Mughals) - 1960 Director K. Asif’s period epic still ranks amongst Bollywood’s highest grossers, starring the legendary Dilip Kumar as a Mughal prince who falls in love with a court dancer, played by his one-time lover Madhubala. Noted for lavish, palatial sets and an immortal soundtrack, it was the costliest Indian film of its time and took 15 years to make, running into production and financial trouble during India’s independence struggle. “Sholay” (Embers) - 1975 India’s first “curry” western and one of its most-loved hits, Sholay combined songs, romance, tragedy and violence. Influenced by “The Magnificent Seven”, it tells a tale of two crooks who help a policeman gain revenge on a notorious gangster for crippling him and killing his family. Badlands in southern India where the film was made are still a tourist attraction. “Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge” (The Braveheart will get the Bride) - 1995 This is the longest-running movie in an Indian cinema, still showing on a big screen in Mumbai 18 years after its release. Produced by Yash Chopra, known for his picturesque romantic hits, it was partly shot in Switzerlandnow a popular destination for well-heeled Indians thanks to its role as a Bollywood backdrop. The film also cemented actor Shah Rukh Khan’s position as one of India’s biggest superstars. “3 Idiots” - 2009 Bollywood’s highest-grossing movie worldwide, this screwball campus-comedy departed from other mainstream “masala” movies, questioning India’s education system and student suicides. Superstar Aamir Khan took the lead, riding on the success of six previous blockbusters including his Oscar-nominated “Lagaan” (Land Tax) of 2001. Finding success in China and Hong Kong, “3 Idiots” is set to be remade in Cantonese by filmmaker Stephen Chow, with talks also on for US and Italian versions. —AFP

billion in the next five years, according to consultancy KPMG. Leading the way is Hindi-language Bollywood, which took the “B” from its home in Bombay and won the hearts of movie-mad Indians. But oldtimers complain that it has become superficial, neglecting to deal with pressing social concerns of the age. “There’s a dumbing down that has taken place in the content. I think we are suffering from what is called the narrative crisis,” said veteran director and producer Mahesh Bhatt. He contrasts modern filmmakers with Dhundiraj Govind Phalke, known as the “father of Indian cinema”, who brought the first all-Indian feature film to the silver screen in Bombay (now Mumbai) on May 3, 1913. A tale from the Hindu epic Mahabharata, “Raja Harishchandra” quickly became a hit despite its female characters being played by men-women acting was still widely frowned upon. Phalke made more than 100 films until his silent style fell victim to “talkies” in the 1930s, but the advent of sound technology allowed India cinema to flourish. Bollywood plotlines today can involve stars breaking into song, often in picturesque far-flung locations, apropos of nothing-a style that may bemuse a Western audience, but one that helps to set Indian cinema apart. “If it was exactly the same thing as Hollywood, Hollywood would have run us over. We don’t have that money,” said film critic Anupama Chopra. For her and many others the “golden age” of cinema was the 1950s, when movie greats emerged such as Satyajit Ray, India’s most renowned filmmaker, who hailed from the alternative film hub of West Bengal. It was the era of newly independent India, searching for an identity and producing films such as Mehboob Khan’s 1957 hit “Mother India”, which combined social concerns with popular appeal. The 1970s and 80s saw a growing commercialism with the rise of the “masala” movie-a family entertainer that typically mixed up romance and action, songs and melodrama, a comedy touch and a happy ending. Parallel Cinema continued to focus on realism, with films such as Mahesh Bhatt’s “Arth” (Meaning) in 1982, a gritty tale of an extramarital affair that presented strong female characters. It was a path-breaker in a decade described as the “dark ages” of Hindi cinema, which struggled with the advent of color television, rampant piracy and dependence on the Mumbai underworld for funding. Things improved after India’s economy opened up in the early 1990s, and again a decade later when filmmaking won formal “industry” status. Both steps encouraged foreign firms, such as Fox and Disney, to invest in Bollywood. —AFP

Tickets for those shows cost a lot more than $20 — as of yesterday the cheapest available seats for next Friday’s Los Angeles show were going for $250. Official prices go up to $600 for standard tickets, or much higher in the resale market. The Stones played a surprise gig in Paris last October, their first in concert in five years, charging just 15 euros each ($20) for 350 lucky fans at the Trabendo club in the northeast of the French capital. —AFP

Out.” He told the crowd that New York hurt with New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005. “After Hurricane Sandy, we’re taking inspiration from you guys,” he said as the crowd cheered in response. He also did his classics, “Only the Good Die Young” and “Piano Man.”

Billy Joel, Mark Rivera and Crystal Taliefero perform during the 2013 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Music Festival at Fair Grounds Race Course in New Orleans, Louisiana. — AFP photos

Eddie Palmier Salsa Orchestra performs. fried green tomatoes as she tapped her foot to the music. Maryruth Senechal, of Hartford, Conn, said Ferbos was excellent. She said she catches his shows often at the Palm Court but prefers his performances at Jazz Fest. “Here, I can dance and second-line. I love the old traditional brass band jazz,” she said. Senechal and her husband, Jean-Guy, have attended Jazz Fest 14 times and spend most of the festival at the jazz tent, where other acts for the

hoisting umbrellas in the tradition known as second line. He closed his set with the New Orleans favorite “When the Saints Go Marching In.” On one of the bigger stages, the brass band Bonerama jammed before a crowd of thousands under sunny skies and a gentle breeze that broke through the warm temperatures. “The sky is smiling upon us,” said Quint Davis, the festival’s producer. “We do it rain or shine, but we reach the spirit and zenith when in the sunshine.” Davis said Friday’s opening day saw bigger crowds than last year. That trend seemed to continue Saturday as thousands packed the grass spaces in front of the festival’s largest stage to hear the day’s final performer, Joel, who opened his set with “Movin’

On a nearby stage, neo-soul singer Jill Scott dazzled fans, singing several of her hits including “It’s Love,” “The Way,” “So In Love,” and “Quick.” New Orleans native Darnie Williams described herself as Scott’s No. 1 fan. “She’s just awesome,” she said of Scott in between dancing and singing along with her. “She’s just a true soul sister. She’s real and her music is so soulful, much like Aretha and Gladys Knight.” Jazz Fest continues through yesterday and then resumes May 2-5. Festival-goers will be treated to traditional jazz, rock ‘n roll, Cajun, gospel, blues, hip-hop, funk and zydeco. Second-weekend headliners include Hall and Oates, Fleetwood Mac, Little Big Town, Aaron Neville and Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews. — AP

Al Mulla International Exchange

Musika 2013


l Mulla International Exchange, the leading money remittance company in Kuwait, organized an evening of musical concert, ‘Musika 2013’ on Friday, 19 April, 2013 at the Kuwait Medical Association hall in Jabriya. The musical concert, which featured six popular local Philippine bands from Kuwait, was inaugurated by the General Consul at the Philippine embassy, Raul H Dado. The invitation-only event that included several dignitaries and patrons of Al Mulla Exchange was an overwhelming success, as a full-house of appreciative audience sat mesmerized by the artists’ performances. Both audiences and artists were appreciative of Al Mulla Exchange’s initiative and expressed the hope that more such events would be organized in the future. They


noted that the event was also significant in helping promote and popularize Philippine music in Kuwait.

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

lifestyle A w a r d s

Actress/musician Selena Gomez performs during the 2013 Radio Disney Music Awards at the Nokia Theatre LA Live on April 27, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. —AFP photos

Selena Gomez:Radio Disney

Music Awards 2013 red carpe S

elena Gomez was a beauty on the red carpet at the 2013 Radio Disney Music Awards held at Nokia Theatre LA L on Saturday afternoon in Los Angeles. The 20-year-old actress/singer performed her new single, ‘Come & Get It’ at the show. ‘This weekend I’m guest hosting The #WeekendCountdown on @SiriusXMHits1, talking about #ComeAndGetIt, my world tour and upcoming album!î Selena tweeted to her fans of more of her weekend activities.—

Actress/musician Selena Gomez performs.

Actress/singer Bridgit Mendler and singer Austin Mahone pose backstage at the 2013 Radio Disney Music Awards.

Roc Royal, Princeton, Ray Ray and Prodigy of the music group Mindless Behavior pose backstage.

Professional dancer Val Chmerkovskiy

Actress Stefanie Scott

Actress Sierra McCormick

Actress Willow Shields

Actress Peyton List

Actor Ross Lynch poses backstage at the 2013 Radio Disney Music Awards.

Actress China Anne McClain

Actor Blake Michael

MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

lifestyle A w a r d s

Actress Sammi Hanratty

Actress Tatyana Ali

Actress Sofia Reyes

Actors Maia Mitchell and Ross Lynch

Actors Coco Jones, Bella Thorne and Caroline Sunshine.

Actress Debby Ryan

Singer/actor Ross Lynch

Actress Deinse Richards and daughter Lola Sheen

Actress/singer Bridgit Mendler

Actress Darcy Rose Byrnes

Actress Madison Pettis

Professional dancer Val Chmerkovskiy and actress Zendaya Coleman

Singer Jason Derulo

Actress Olivia Holt

Actress Kelli Berglund

Singer/actress Coco Jones

Actress Caroline Sunshine

Singer Jessica Sanchez

Singer Ariana Grande

Singer Cody Simpson

Rolling Stones play surprise LA club gig


MONDAY, APRIL 29, 2013

Visitors look at works of art by US pop artist Andy Warhol at the exhibition “Andy Warhol: 15 Minutes Eternal” showing at Shanghai’s government-funded “Power Station of Art” in Shanghai yesterday. —AFP photos

A model holds a can of Campbell’s soup.

Mao no-show as Warhol exhibition

opens in China


hanghai’s contemporary art museum yesterday opened a show featuring the works of American pop artist Andy Warhol, but without his iconic portraits of former Chinese leader Chairman Mao. The Pittsburgh-based Andy Warhol Museum, which supplied more than 300 pieces for the show, said months in advance that paintings of Mao Zedong would not be shown in keeping with the wishes of the Chinese hosts. “We worked with curators at both institutions in Shanghai and Beijing and there was a little bit of concern about bringing them right now,” Warhol museum director Eric Shiner told AFP yesterday. “We wanted to introduce Andy Warhol’s work to China. If those paintings could be a problem in any way, we didn’t want them,” he said, adding it was a “mutual decision” not to include them. The show has already travelled to Singapore and Hong Kong, and will head to Beijing and Tokyo after Shanghai. Among the highlights of the Warhol

A photographer takes photos of the famous depiction of Campbell’s Soup cans.

A visitor looks at works of art by US pop artist Andy Warhol.

museum’s collection is a 1972 painting showing a blue-suited Mao. Shanghai is seeking to become an art capital on a

year. But critics have questioned how Shanghai can become a true cultural centre since the government censors art

par with New York and Paris, opening government-funded modern and contemporary art museums in October last

A Yemeni man walks in Sanaa’s old city that is currently listed as one of the world heritage sites by UNESCO. —AFP photos

that it considers politically sensitive or pornographic. During the 1960s and 1970s, China

built a personality cult around Mao, worshipping his portrait, but images and statues of the leader, who died in 1976, have now largely disappeared. Chinese artists have also depicted Mao in their works, including painter Li Shan, who shows the leader with a leaf in his mouth in a well-known piece. Warhol himself visited China not long before his death in 1987. “He was very interested, when he went to Beijing, in how Mao Zedong was represented, over and over again,” said Abigail Franzen-Sheehan, director of publications for the Warhol museum. The exhibition “Andy Warhol: 15 Minutes Eternal” is showing at Shanghai’s Power Station of Art for three months. The works on display include his famous depiction of Campbell’s Soup cans as well as his portraits of movie star Marilyn Monroe. “His work contains significance in terms of looking at your contemporary surroundings with a critical eye. We hope that (people) will think about Warhol’s work, the questions he was provoking,” Franzen-Sheehan said. —AFP

Pictures show the traditional architecture of Sanaa’s old city.

Old Sanaa, an endangered UNESCO heritage site T

o see Sanaa’s Old City for the first time is like “a vision of a childhood dream world of fantasy castles,” a visitor once remarked, but official neglect and unruly construction are threatening to destroy that magic. Yemen’s capital is one of the most ancient cities in the world, and entering its oldest quarter has been described “as perhaps the closest thing to time travel” we can experience. Ancient “tower blocks,” some six storeys high, some nine, look like gingerbread castles. With ground floors of black lava stone, their upper storeys are of baked brick decorated with intricate geometric shapes and horizontal bands in gypsum whitewash. Each quarter has a mosque, a hammam (Turkish bath) and a garden around which the houses were built. In the past, water used for ablution in the mosque was then pooled to irrigate the gardens, used for growing vegetables, and waste was recycled to heat water in the hammams or for fertilizer. That rich heritage is reflected in 103 mosques, some built more than a millennium ago, 14 hammams and more than 6,000 centuries-old houses, and the Old City was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1986.

But preservationists are struggling against the ravages of the modern world. Randomly built concrete houses distort the Old City’s skyline, salt from the cement weakens its structure and the oncespacious gardens are disappearing. Many people have abandoned their homes, which are costly to maintain, and moved to new villas outside of town. So the Old City has increasingly become a home for lower income people, who are even less able to stem the tide of dilapidation. More and more of these houses, each of which stands as an individual piece of art, are collapsing because of decay, the recent installation of sewage pipes along the narrow alleys and heavy rainfall. This is compounded by a lack of maintenance resulting from the indifference of the authorities, UNESCO warns. And because of inadequate drainage, the rainy season poses an annual threat to the old mud brick buildings. In February 2012, UNESCO urged the authorities “to ensure the protection of the cultural heritage” of the impoverished country. But the government has been absorbed by an ongoing political crisis and security threats, and had little time, or money, to spare for preservation. Yemen was rocked by an Arab Spring-

inspired uprising in 2011 that forced then president Ali Abdullah Saleh out of office after a year of clashes in Sanaa between loyalists and opponents using medium and heavy weaponry. Naji Saleh Thawaba, president of the General Organisation for the Preservation of the Historic Cities of Yemen (GOPHCY), said the government is now focused on holding a national dialogue to end political deadlock in the country. “The government and the international community have only one thing in mind: the national dialogue, and have forgotten everything else-including heritage,” he said. Founded in 1990, GOPHCY is an independent body that was set up to develop a strategy for sustainable development in Sanaa and other cities. Thawaba’s bitter remark suggests his agency does not have the means to do the job. “The ministry of finance has not allocated anything to the organization, which is expected to prepare studies about preservation and prevent abuse,” he said. Thawaba’s deputy, Ammatelrazzaq Jehaf, shares his concerns. “We have a budget of five million riyals ($23,000/17,700 euros) for Sanaa... How can this amount be enough to take care of 600 houses?” “The only practical solution is a UNESCO mission

which would unify national and international efforts to preserve this heritage. Without such a mission, nothing will change,” says Thawaba. Jehaf hopes UNESCO will reach out by “finding donors and financiers who would come to the aid of Sanaa.” UNESCO has organized several missions to Sanaa to try to provide assistance to restoration projects. But the UN organization said no official information is available on the state of conservation of Old City properties “due to security restrictions.” Sanaa residents feel their precious heritage is about to crumble, and blame authorities for not doing enough to protect it. “We have no government attention while many homes are on the verge of collapse,” said Abdelaziz al-Dhahiani. Another resident, Wazir al-Ghallab, echoed the sense of helplessness. “We cannot restore them ourselves. We keep waiting for government intervention that never arrives. There are houses that have been ruined for 15 years and nobody cares,” he said. “Sometimes the facade is slightly restored but the interior is left in ruins,” said Ghallab. “Old Sanaa is an unmatched jewel that everyone should try to preserve.” —AFP

29 Apr 2013  

Kuwait Times

29 Apr 2013  

Kuwait Times