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Blackouts, curfews, protests rock India over new state

Dubai ranks first in list of holiday destinations


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US and China tussle for trade dominance



Jets soar past Falcons with a last-second goal


Maasouma, Tahous may lose parliamentary seats Dashti, Fadhl on the verge of coming back By B Izzak conspiracy theories

How, for God’s sake? By Badrya Darwish

KUWAIT: Abdulhameed Dashti and Nabeel Al-Fadhl, who were elected to the previous two national assemblies that were scrapped by the Constitutional Court after several months of election, may finally find permanent seats in the National Assembly. Results of the July 27 parliamentary elections compiled by the Interior Ministry and made available yesterday by the Constitutional Court showed that Dashti and Fadhl may be declared winners by the court later this month at the expense of MPs Maasouma Al-Mubarak and Osama Al-Tahous. The court and legal experts however warned that results compiled by the

Interior Ministry cannot be accepted by the Constitutional Court as a legal justification to declare MPs Mubarak and Tahous as losers. The Constitutional Court insisted that the only legal document that it will be accepted is the results compiled and approved by the judges who supervised the July 27 polls and the vote counting the same day. Although democracy and parliamentary system have been in Kuwait for over a half century, counting of votes is still manual which remains a source of committing mistakes especially in allocating the votes or calculating them. Because the results of the July election were too close in some districts, a number of candidates contested the outcome to the

Constitutional Court. The court yesterday allowed those candidates to see the results compiled by the Interior Ministry. After seeing the results, Dashti said they show that he has got six votes more than Mubarak who had won the 10th and last seat in the First Constituency. Several other candidates had contested the results. Dashti was immediately congratulated by supporters. He said that such mistakes could happen after a very long and tiring day. In the Third Constituency, the ministry figures show that Fadhl, who came in 11th place and thus lost, should have been declared a winner in the ninth place and that newcomer Tahous will be declared the loser. Tahous however said that he was

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still a Member of Parliament, exercising his powers as usual because the only side authorized to disqualify him is the Constitutional Court which will issue its verdict on October 27. The court has already asked two top judges to visit the National Assembly building and open the original ballots and examine the results that had been compiled and signed by judges. If the judges’ results agree with the Interior Ministry figures, then Dashti and Fadhl will become MPs and Mubarak and Tahous will be disqualified. This will not be the first incident in Kuwait’s parliamentary elections as many similar decisions were made in the past. The rulings of the Constitutional Court are final and cannot be challenged.


just read one of the most amazing news items. Actually, the news was quite thrilling. A department head at the Ministry of Health gave a statement to the media that Kuwait is studying a plan to screen with clinical tests the labourers coming to work in Kuwait. Those who fail the clinical tests will not be allowed to get a work permit and reside in Kuwait. So far so good. For years on end, Kuwait has been implementing a policy of medical examination that checks laborers’ health status. A certified laboratory or a clinic that is approved by the Kuwait embassy in the country of origin of an applicant, conducts the medical tests in order to decrease any cheating related to the blood results etc. Mind you, upon arrival in Kuwait the same tests are conducted at a Kuwaiti hospital in Al- Sabah area. This is something I approve of because it is not advisable to give permanent residency to anyone who has a serious disease. However, this is not the major point of discussion today. The gentleman from the ministry said that the screening will be applied to prevent gays, or what is known in the Gulf region as (methaleen) or (the third sex) from entering Kuwait. At this point of the article, I laughed my head off. To check somebody for tuberculosis you X-ray his or her chest. To check for HIV they do blood work. All hepatitis diseases could be identified with blood work. If there is a medical check-up for ‘gay-disease’ may I know how the person who suggests such screening intends to do it? What kind of blood test or screening will be done? I was flabbergasted hearing about the suggestion. Unless, of course, the gentleman has some other kinds of tests which we are unfamiliar with. If he is checking for gay men he should be checking for the rest of the crew: lesbians too. Can he enlighten us how on Earth he plans to find out if someone is gay or not. Are the authorities going to include “sexual orientation” as one of the questions in a CV? I bet you, give this suggestion two days and Human Rights Watch will be barraging us with claims of human rights violations. They might also start asking the Western world to ban Kuwaitis from entering. Have a good evening!

KUWAIT: A huge fire engulfed a building in Jabriya near the 4th Ring Road yesterday. Four fire centers rushed to the site. No injuries were reported and investigation is underway. — Photos by Yasser Al-Zayyat

Minister criticizes Kuwait red tape, bloated admin Saudi preacher jailed for raping, killing daughter

ISTANBUL: Turkish women wearing headscarves walk on Beyazit Square. — AFP

Turkey lifts ban on Islamic headscarves ANKARA: Turkey lifted a ban on women wearing the Islamic head scarf in state institutions yesterday, ending a generations-old restriction as part of a package of reforms the government says are meant to improve democracy. The ban, whose roots date back almost 90 years to the early days of the Turkish Republic,

has kept many women from joining the public work force, but secularists see its abolition as evidence of the government pushing an Islamic agenda. The new rules, which will not apply to the judiciary or the military, were published in the Official Gazette and take immediate Continued on Page 15

RIYADH: A Saudi court sentenced a preacher convicted of raping his five-year-old daughter and torturing her to death to eight years in prison and 800 lashes, a lawyer said yesterday. In a case that drew widespread public condemnation in the kingdom and abroad, the court also ordered Fayhan AlGhamdi to pay his ex-wife, the girl’s mother, one million riyals ($270,000) in “blood money,” lawyer Turki Al-Rasheed said. Blood money is compensation for the next of kin under Islamic law. The girl’s mother had demanded 10 million riyals ($2.7 million). Ghamdi’s second wife, accused of taking part in the crime, was sentenced to 10 months in prison and 150 lashes, said Rasheed, who is lawyer for the girl’s mother. Ghamdi was convicted of “raping and killing his five-year-old daughter Lama,” he added. The girl was admitted to hospital on December 25, 2011 with multiple injuries, including a crushed skull, broken ribs and left arm, extensive bruising and burns, activists said. She died several months later. Ghamdi, a regular guest on Muslim television networks despite not being an authorized cleric in Saudi Arabia, had confessed to having used cables and a Continued on Page 15

DUBAI: Kuwait’s new finance minister has issued a stinging criticism of the country’s bloated administration and bureaucratic red tape, saying the economy cannot continue growing robustly in the long term if they are not reformed. The comments by Sheikh Salem Abdulaziz Al-Sabah, carried by state news agency KUNA on Monday, were his

first extensive public policy statement since he took his job in August. Sheikh Salem left the central bank last year after 25 years as its governor, protesting against a rapid rise in government spending. It is not clear whether he will have more success in shaping Kuwait’s fiscal policy in his new role. Continued on Page 15

KUWAIT: Kuwaiti Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Sabah (center) attends the opening ceremony of the Kuwait Oil and Gas Show and Conference (KOGS) in Kuwait city. — Photo by Yasser Al-Zayyat



KPC plans to launch oil research center Tender to produce heavy crude oil

KUWAIT: Kuwait and cyprus officials signing the agreements.

Kuwait, Cyprus hammer out six co-operation agreements KUWAIT: In a big ceremony held here yesterday, Kuwait and Cyprus signed six agreements and one memo of understanding to bolster bilateral cooperation in various domains. The signing ceremony, held at Bayan Palace, was attended by His Highness the Deputy Amir and Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah and visiting Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades as well as several Kuwaiti and Cypriot ministers and senior officials. The Kuwaiti and Cypriot foreign ministries inked a technical agreement on

the arrival and departure of Kuwaiti citizens in Cyprus during an evacuation operation from the Middle East to Kuwait via Cyprus and a memorandum of understanding on bilateral political consultations. The two governments signed four agreements for cooperation in terrorism and crime -fighting, tourism, public health and medical science, and higher education and scientific research. A cooperation agreement was also signed between Kuwait News Agency and Cyprus News Agency. — KUNA

KUWAIT: Deputy Premier and Minister of Oil Mustafa Al-Shimali announced yesterday that Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) started plans for launching a world-class oil research center pursuant to the will of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah. “The center will employ the state-of-the-art technical standards to provide the oil sector with practical researches and solutions,” he said. Al-Shimali made the announcement in his inaugural speech to first Kuwait Oil and Gas Show and Conference (KOGS-2013) being held for three days under auspices of HH the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah who attended the opening session. On KOGS-2013, he said it aims to review the latest developments in the world oil market and prices in the light of the political and economic changes. “The gathering provides an ample opportunity for cooperation to create investment-friendly atmosphere and facilitate the advancement of oil-related technologies,” he pointed out. He reaffirmed the commitment of Kuwait, as a key oil producer, to ensure the stability of the world oil market through sufficient supplies. “The reality requires that all stakeholders work together to ensure better future for the next generations and use the energy resources in a sustainable way amid the growing demand,” he urged. “The vision of Kuwait is based on economical use of oil while promoting human development and creating more jobs,” Al-Shimali pointed out. The new oil discoveries help Kuwait to increase its output capacity from the current 3.2 million barrels per day to four million bpd in 2020 and maintain this level later on, he revealed. Al-Shimali affirmed that oil and gas, as fossil fuels, will continue to be the main sources of energy in the foreseeable future “and this is why we

forge ahead with our ambitious plans for the development of the oil industry.” He thanked HH the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber for attending the opening ceremony of the KOGS2013, noting that his kind presence signals support to the oil sector. Meanwhile, President of the Conference and CEO of KPC Nezar Al-Adsani said the Conference is the fruit of relentless efforts made by his predecessor, former KPC’s CEO, Farouq Al-Zanki, in setting the stage for the event. “The Conference will give momentum to the strategy of the Kuwaiti oil sector for 2030 which envisages raising the production capacities of oil wells and refineries, integrating the refining industry with the petrochemical industry, and promoting the gas sector,” Al-Adsani noted. KPC is keen on networking with other key operators in the Gulf region and beyond to address the challenges relating to the acquisition of hi-tech and expertise, he affirmed. KOGS-2013 incorporates an international exhibition of oil and gas hardware and services and a broad spectrum technical conference program. It serves all areas of the oil and gas industry; including petroleum geosciences, exploration and production, as well as the refining and petrochemical products and services, Al-Adsani pointed out. He appreciated the role of the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) in organizing the gathering in collaboration with a committee of senior NOC and IOC representatives, major operators and academia active in the region. Meanwhile, Kuwait Oil Co. (KOC) plans to launch a tender later this year for the construction of facilities to produce heavy crude oil at a cost of up to KD 1.2 billion ($4.2 billion), the company’s CEO Hashem Hashem said. The entire tender will be awarded to one single international contractor

whose task will be to construct facilities to process heavy crude oil, to build pipelines, and to facilitate the exporting of that oil from the Fourth Refinery, said Hashem, on the sidelines of an oil conference being held here. He told reporters that the wisdom behind using one contractor was that the latter will be entirely responsible for the whole project from beginning to end, and no one else. He said that raising Kuwait’s oil productivity level involved extensive constructions of facilities to store oil, gas, water and of power plants and exportation facilities in addition to drilling new wells. He further said that Kuwait’s current production was about 3 million barrels a day. OPEC secretary general Abdullah al-Badri, attending the same conference here on oil and gas, the first of its kind hosted by Kuwait, said that current world oil prices were fair for both producers and consumers. He expected that the rancor between the US president and the congress will soon pass and that, at any rate, oil prices will not plummet below $80. On the possibility that shale oil and gas may sooner or later affect the price of oil, he said “this new source of energy would not impinge on the price of crude oil,” expecting that shale oil production might peak in 2018, with the daily production of four or five million barrels a day, but thereafter it was liable to decrease. OPEC countries meanwhile would not be affected by this, he assured. He did not reveal any intention of production spikes by OPEC in the short run and sounded sanguine about the relaxing of tensions between Iran and the US, noting that this would reflect positively on the oil markets, since Iran is a major oil producer and possess sizable oil reserves. He also sounded optimistic about the Libyan oil production, saying the crisis regarding it was on its way to resolution, noting that Libya has large oil reserves and skillful cadres of oil workers. — KUNA

Youth who killed dad claims self-defense KUWAIT: A young man accused of killing his father on Monday claimed that the incident was “unintentional” and happened when he stepped in to protect his sister and mother from his abusive father. The incident happened in Rehab where police found the 60-year-old stateless resident dead inside his house. His 29-year-old son turned himself over to police, who took him to Farwaniya Hospital to tend to his stab wounds. During interrogation, the killer said that he came into the liv-

ing room and found his father “brutally beating” his sister and said that he had a knife and threatened to kill her for unknown reasons. He said that he sustained injuries when his father attacked him after he freed his sister from his hands. During the melee, he managed to snatch the knife from his hands and stabbed him. Preliminary forensic examination report indicated that the man died after he was stabbed in the neck. The killer denied premeditated murder and said that he only wanted to “intimidate” his dad

and make him back off from his sister. He argued that both he and his sister were injured during the fight and pleaded self-defense. He also said that his father was abusive and carried a knife with him all the time which he used to intimidate his siblings. The forensic report also confirmed that the killer was injured on his right arm and sustained multiple concussions, while his sister also had stab wounds apart from bruises all across her body. He is currently being questioned.

Cabinet discusses housing, future cities KUWAIT: The Cabinet held an extraordinary meeting yesterday to discuss housing problem, with Minister of State for Housing Salem Al-Athaina briefing members over practical solutions to establish new cities with private sector’s participation. The meeting, chaired by His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah at Sief Palace, is part of government’s great interest in housing “as one of the pillars of stability for the Kuwaiti family, “ Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs and Minister of Health Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah Al-Sabah said in a statement after the meeting. He noted that the housing issue topped priorities of Kuwaiti citizens, as shown by a National Assembly’s poll. Al-Athaina and executives at the public housing authority briefed the cabinet members about the nature of the housing problem and obstacles facing implementation of housing projects. They explained the housing units that were distributed and number of housing applications, as well as projected applications. Al-Athaina and the public housing authority’s executives also spoke about underconstruction projects, practical suggestions to establish new cities in collaboration of the private sector. The cabinet, said Sheikh Mohammad, also discussed the details of the services and facilities of these housing projects, as well as their legislative, financial, social and economic prerequisites. The National Assembly’s Legislative and Legal Committee

reviewed yesterday a number of proposals for certain draft laws, approving one calling for amendments to a 1972 law on contesting court rulings, committee secretary Abdulkarim AlKanderi told reporters here. He said the committee listened to accounts by representatives from the ministries of Justice and Interior and from the Kuwait Lawyers Association regarding proposal of a draft law on linking the department of criminal investigations to the public prosecutor’s office. The ministry of Interior was against the linkage and saw no reason to separate the department from the prosecutor’s office, as - it assured - that the department was doing its job very well, said al-Kanderi, noting that the majority of the committee members were for de-linking the department from the ministry of Interior and linking it to the ministry of Justice. However no final decision was made on this issue, pending further studies and consultations, he said. The committee furthermore rejected a proposal by the government to amend a 1964 law on organizing the profession of lawyering, pending a comprehensive proposal on the subject to be prepared by the committee and to be submitted to the National Assembly at a later date. Moreover, the committee reviewed a government proposal to add a clause or an article to a 1995 law on putting ministers on trial, and opted not to take a final decision on it, pending responses from the Cabinet and the ministry of Justice, said Al-Kanderi. — KUNA

Municipality inspections in Shuwaikh KUWAIT: Capital municipality emergency team inspected several cooperatives and food stores in Shuwaikh residential areas. Head of the emergency team Tariq Al-Qattan said the emergency teams work round the clock and during Eid days to inspect foods in restaurants and workers. He said the team removed congratulory ads that are abundant in Sulaibikhat, Rawdha, and Qairawan. Al-Qattan said complaints are received on the hotline 1855555 in case of any complaint related to food. He said the inspection campaign resulted in issuing 10 citations related to displaying food material outside the shop, selling expired material and lack of health certificates. He said that 60 kg of cheese, tahina sweet, myonaise, canned vegetables and mushroom were confiscated. In Hawally, a campaign resulted in issu-

ing one citation for a worker with expired health license and distruction of 7.5 kg of expired chocolate, 12 kg of

industrial gelatine used in making cake and citations for employing workers without health license.



Kuwait Times Editor-in-Chief Abd Al-Rahman Al-Alyan (right) is pictured with Ambassador Sik during the reception.

KUWAIT: The Ambassador of S Korea Kim Kyung Sik (left) and Khaled Al-Jarallah, Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs are cutting the cake during the reception.

Kuwait Times’ general manager Badrya Darwish (centre) is seen with the Iraqi Ambassador to Kuwait Mohammad Bahr Al-Aoum and his wife.

KUWAIT: A group picture of the ambassador at the reception ceremony that was held by the ambassador of the Republic of Korea Kim Kyung Sik on the occasion of the National Foundation Day and the Armed Forces Day of the Republic of Korea`at Salawa Al-Sabah hall recently. — Photos by Joseph Shagra

(From right) The Brazilian Consul, the Venezuelan Ambassador Hadel Mustafa Baulini, Abd Al-Rahman Al-Alyan, Albanian Ambassador’s spouse and the Albanian ambassador Kochtem Morina are pictured at the event.

Dubai ranks first in list of holiday destinations Sharp increase in ticket charges

By Nawara Fattahova

KUWAIT: Information Minister Sheikh Salman Al-Sabah receiving the new Iraqi ambassador to Kuwait yesterday.

Al-Rasheedi ‘crossed all lines’ By A Saleh KUWAIT: MP Mansour Al-Thafeiri expressed amazement at what he described as the Social Affairs Minister Thekra Al-Rasheedi’s “persistence” on delaying the allowances of Kuwaiti women over 55 years of age. “Enough is enough! The minister crossed all lines when her Assistant Undersecretary, Mona Al-Fadhli asked social workers to visit these women’s houses to find out if they deserved the allowance”, he said noting that this is a breach of privacy. MP Mohammed Al-Howailah said that he spoke with Khalifa Al-

Thahrani, Bahraini Speaker of the House to discuss the issue of Kuwaiti graduates at Bahraini University of Delmon. He added that Al-Thahrani promised to solve the problem. The Coptic Orthodox Church in Kuwait recently extended congratulations to HH the Amir, HH the CP, HH the PM, the Kuwaiti people, the Egyptian diplomatic mission and Egyptians living in Kuwait on the advent of Eid Al-Adha. Saudi Prince Talal Bin Abdul Aziz said the term ‘Creative Chaos’ worded by Condoleezza Rice, former US Secretary of State was but a simple

part of a series of conspiracies which would successively unfold. Speaking on his Twitter account, Prince Talal said that the recent statements made by Hugh Shelton, retired US Army General where he said that the Obama administration was working on destabilizing both Egypt and Bahrain, which verifies the conspiracy theory people are talking about. “Most Arabs are ignoring that fact that our enemies are waiting to attack while we are becoming weaker and more divided”, said the 82-year-old Saudi prince and the 18th son of the late King Abdul Aziz, KSA founder.

MPs support homosexuality ban KUWAIT: Several lawmakers in Kuwait applauded recent statements in which a senior Health Ministry official announced measures to bar entrance of homosexuals into Gulf countries, whereas at least one MP announced efforts to pass a bill in that regard in the parliament if necessary. “There are plans to present a draft to the parliament’s health committee to ban entrance of homosexuals into Kuwait legally ”, MP Husain AlQuwaian told Al-Rai on Monday. He described the decision announced by Public Health Department Director Dr Yousuf Mendakar as a “good effort”, which he said “helps eliminate such a phenomenon from our societies”. “Any individual who is medically unfit must not be allowed to enter in order to protect the society and its pillars”, he added. Dr Mendakar was quoted by Al-Rai

on Monday saying that Gulf Cooperation Council states will discuss plans to introduce clinical tests, in addition to routine medical examinations to obtain a visa which will “detect” homosexuals and transgenders who are then denied access to any of the member states. Parliament Obser ver Saud AlHuraiji applauded the step as “being in line with the Islamic Sharia and traditions of the Gulf communities”. “This is a decision that is long overdue and has our full support and I believe that it also reflects public demand”, MP AlHuraiji said. MP Khalil Al-Saleh meanwhile welcomed the decision “to protect moral values and fight [homosexuality] that is rejected in most societies”. He further argued that the issue “has nothing to do with personal freedom because it tackles a moral and cultural

issue”. “Every society has its own religious and cultural identity which must be respected by every visitor or person seeking to work there”, he said. In the meantime, MP Hmoud AlHamdan said that the step is a part of governments’ duties to “protect Gulf societies from diseases”, mentioning in specific sexually transmitted diseases “that [homosexuals] are mostly affected with as a result of immoral practices”. Meanwhile, MP Abdurrahman Al-Jeeran described the project as “the right decision at the right time”. Al-Rai also spoke with liberal MP Osama Al-Tahous who raised questions about how a person’s sexual orientation can be determined through clinical tests, and demanded a decision be taken after a study addresses the “scientific, legal, and constitutional” sides of the issue.

KUWAIT: As the official Eid Al-Adha holidays have been announced for nine days, most people are planning to travel during this long holiday. But people who didn’t plan their holiday earlier find themselves in an unenviable situation with tickets selling at double or even triple their original rate. According to Mazin from Villa Travels, expats are more organized in planning their holiday which saves them a huge amount of money on tickets. “Expats book early about six months in advance. I have clients who booked a ticket to Egypt at KD 110 to travel during this holiday, and the same ticket costs KD 300 now. In general, half of our clients are citizens and the other half are expats. Customers look for cheap prices to begin with and the ones who book first, pay less but cheaper tickets have more restrictions in terms of seat availability,” he told the Kuwait Times. Dubai ranks first when it comes to popular destinations. “I can classify the top destinations this Eid. In the Middle East, Dubai is first, followed by Egypt, Lebanon, and Jordan. The others book European destinations while

a minority fly to the Far East,” he added. This is not the only peak season in Kuwait for travelling. “The price is always very high for top destinations during different peak seasons, which include official holidays like Christmas and New Year. Christmas is also considered a busy season and the preferred destinations include the Philippines, London, and US which are in demand. Clients also like to spend New Year’s eve in Dubai, Beirut and Amman which are all party hotspots where Arab singers hold concerts. London is very popular with travelers during New Year’s eve as well,” said Mazin. Dana, from Lozan Travels said “During each travel season, the prices are the same. I assume that all carriers hike their prices 100 percent to all popular destinations. The most demanded destinations this season are Dubai, Istanbul, and Europe (London, Paris, Vienna). A few passengers chose Amman. Far Eastern destinations are not in demand now as people usually head there in summer,” she said. Georgia is a hot destination this year. “This is the first time this year

we’re operating direct flights to Georgia and promoting it. Morocco is also well-liked this season. Russia and Bulgaria became popular last year and people still want to travel there. Few passengers fly to the US as the visa is difficult to get. About 80 percent of our clients this season are Kuwaitis. Those who travelled before Ramadan are travelling now, while those who travelled during Eid Al-Fitr just returned recently from a long holiday and aren’t traveling now,” Dana said. Hong Kong is the new destination this season, according to Anny from Ajwa Travels. “A large number of our clients booked tickets to Hong Kong this Eid. Istanbul used to be a top destination but not at the moment. Generally speaking, all routes have increased their prices by more than 100 percent. The Far East is popular this season as the weather there is still nice and prices are affordable, and this includes Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, and Singapore. Many Kuwaiti passengers don’t know where to travel and they ask for advice, so I advise them on new destinations. European destinations like London and Paris are always in demand during holidays,” she explained.

Real estate developments mushroom in Gulf states DUBAI: Amid solid economic prospects, driven by constant high oil prices and relative political stability, developers in the Gulf Arab region announce on an almost daily basis new mega projects worth billions of US dollars, with the Emirate of Dubai taking a lead. The biggest Middle East developer Emaar Properties from Dubai and the state-owned investment firm Dubai Holding said earlier on Monday that they had entered a joint venture to built The Lagoons, a residential and hospitality district adjacent to the world’s largest man-made lagoon in Mohammed Bin Rashid (MBR) city, a planned new “city within the city.” According to the e-mailed statement by both entities, The Lagoons is a waterfront city spreading over 6 million square meters. The project just came one day after the Dubaibased developer Crystal Lagoons said it will build for $7 billion the world’s largest man-made lagoon water reservoir with a surface of 40 hectares in the heart of Dubai. Led by the Dubai Tourism Vision to record 20 million visitors by the turn of the decade, the project will help firmly establish Dubai as one of the top 10 global cities by 2020, said the

statement. Competition for global attention is fierce in the Gulf region, as the six Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries are stepping up efforts recently to launch new residential, commercial and infrastructure projects amid a positive economic prospects in this region. Last Saturday, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) expected the region’s gross domestic product to grow at 3.7 percent this year, which would be lower than the exceptionally strong average rate of 6.4 percent in the year of 2010-12, “but favorable by global standards.” US crude oil prices have gained over 15 percent in the last 12 months, feeding the GCC states’ budget surpluses. Meanwhile, the two major oil suppliers Saudi Arabia and Kuwait are accelerating construction on the two landmark towers which are poised to become the tallest buildings in the world. Saudi started in Jeddah at the Red Sea the Kingdom Tower which shall have the oriental height of 1001 meters, whose construction would last for six years. The northern Gulf state of Kuwait also builds a record-

breaking high tower, the Burj AlMubarak Al-Kabeer, which shall also have a height of 1001 meters. At the end of July, the Saudi capital Riyadh awarded contracts worth 22.5 billion dollars for the construction of the Riyadh metro. The driverless system that spreads on a network of 176 kilometers length shall help ease traffic in Riyadh’s chronically congested streets. Nevertheless, progress in building is not always a ride on the fast lane. The gas-rich Gulf state of Qatar had to postpone the opening of its mega project, 5,400-acre New Doha International Airport last month due to a legal dispute with Dubai-based interior design firm Depa, as both sides blame each other of alleged delays in the inner fit-out work. The real estate boom is also visible in leading developers’ profits. Earlier in the day, Dubai’s state-owned company Nakheel announced that it generated in the first nine months of this year a net profit of 1.77 billion Dirham, or 482.68 million dollars, representing a year-on-year increase of 58 percent. The surge was driven by “a return of investor confidence,” Nakheel said in a statement on its website.



Daylight car robbery foiled in Kuwait Teen escapes rape attempt KUWAIT: Investigations are ongoing in search of a suspect who attempted to steal a car by renting a crane to tow it while it was parked outside its owner’s house. The incident took place in Saad Al-Abdullah on Monday afternoon when a Kuwaiti man saw his car being towed after he looked out the window on hearing strange noises. When he came out of his house, a man inside a Japanese-made vehicle immediately drove away and escaped. The crane driver told the car owner that the man who escaped had paid him to tow the car which he claimed belonged to him. The suspect reportedly claimed that he had lost the key to the car which he wanted to be transported to Jahra’s industrial zone. The crane driver agreed to go with the car owner to the police station where a case was filed. The car owner explained that he never suspected that such an incident could happen in broad daylight right in front of his house. He gave police the license plate number of the suspect’s car but it was later discovered that the plates were reported stolen.

Asian commits suicide A man was found dead inside a Salmiya apartment where he committed suicide according to preliminary investigations. Police, paramedics and criminal investigators headed to the scene after the incident was reported and found the Asian man hanging dead from the ceiling. The body was transported to the forensic department after investigators examined the scene. A case was opened to determine the motives behind the man’s decision to end his life. Rape attempt Hawally police are looking into a case involving a teenager who accuses three people of attempted sexual assault. The case was filed on Monday at the Hawally police station where the Kuwaiti boy was escorted by his father. He told police that he went to a cafÈ to meet with a friend and they went to an apartment where he met three strangers. His friend left shortly after he drank something suspicious which made him lose consciousness. The teenager said that when

he woke up, he saw one of the trio trying to strip him but he managed to resist them and escape. Police received a medical report which indicated that he was injured trying to fight off the assailants. Investigations are currently ongoing to catch the perpetrators.

International Airport after he attempted to use a forged passport to enter the country. The Asian man arrived on a flight from a Gulf state

when his passport was inspected after officials found it suspicious. He was arrested after it was confirmed that his passport was forged.

Sexual assault A lawyer filed a case at the Naeem police station and accused a young man of sexually assaulting his client repeatedly and leaving her pregnant. In his statement to police, the attorney said that his client’s relationship with the suspect started as friendship and changed eventually. He said that the suspect sexually assaulted her and blackmailed her into submitting to his desires repeatedly which resulted in her pregnancy. He gave information of the suspect, a Syrian man who works as an office manager at a local company which is into religious activities. Investigations are on. Forged passport A passenger was arrested at the Kuwait

Zain sponsors diamond jubilee ceremony of NUKS KUWAIT: Zain, the leading telecommunications company in Kuwait, yesterday announced its sponsorship of the Diamond Jubilee ceremony and annual conference of the National Union of Kuwaiti Students - United Kingdom and Ireland branch. The ceremony, under the patronage of The Prime Minister HH Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Subah will be held in London Oct 25 to 27. During the 3 day event celebrating 60 years since NUKS inception in the UK, students and their families will enjoy multiple activities including social and cultural programs, academic meetings, sports competitions and entertainment for all ages. Waleed Al-Khashti, Zain Kuwait’s Corporate Communications and Relations manager said: “Extending support to our Kuwaiti youth living abroad is important to Zain, and as a leading Kuwaiti company we aim to make our Kuwaiti youth feel celebrated not only abroad, but at home.”

“By assisting Kuwaiti students who have travelled abroad to study at some of the world’s best universities, NUKS performs an important role for Kuwait. NUKS students benefit from high-quality academic learning and unique life experiences which will be valuable in their future professional careers. They are also brilliant young ambassadors for Kuwait,” concluded Al-Khashti. NUKS is considered to be the only representative of Kuwaiti students in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland’s, as it is known to be one oldest branches of the Union. The branch became part of the Kuwait Government Code since 1964, and it is one of the constituent branches that contributed into forming the Union Code. The unity of the Kuwaiti society, patriotism, national union and keeping the society together regardless of the race, gender or background is one thing Zain is proud to witness during one of the biggest important events held abroad.

Drugs smuggling attempt foiled By Hanan Al-Saadoun KUWAIT: Narcotics department foiled an attempt to smuggle 1,500 hallucinogens in a postal package from an Asian country via a Gulf country. The customs department arrested the recipients after being tipped off. The parcel contained clothes with the drugs hidden inside. Two suspects and the drugs were sent to concerned authorities. Warehouse fire A fire broke out at an Ardhiya warehouse. Cans of cleaning material caught fire which was controlled with no reports of injuries or casualties. Suspicious death A man who works for the I nterior Ministry told police that he received a call on October 2 from the guard of an animal pen in Kabad who told him that two men brought his heavily injured father to the place and escaped. He was rushed to the hospital where he went into a coma and died yesterday. Hospital investigators gave his medical report to his son and detectives are currently working on the case. Bedoon girl raped A bedoon girl told police that while walking in Sulaibiya agricultural area, on

KUWAIT: The drug duo pictured after their arrest yesterday. her way to Kabd, she lost her way and asked some people to give her a lift. Instead, they raped her and robbed her of KD 480 and a flash memory. The prosecutor recorded the case as a felony.

Calls for conserving water resources BUDAPEST: Kuwaiti Minister of Electricity and Water Abdulaziz AlIbarhim called here yesterday for reducing water consumption, preserving water resources and wisely managing sewage systems since these are considered major UN development goals. Al-Ibrahim said that Kuwait’s participation in the Water Summit, currently being held in Budapest, Hungary, comes in line with its concern over slimming water consumption. The event also imposes itself as an opportunity to boost diplomatic ties between Hungary and Kuwait. The two-day summit is entitled “The Role of Water and Sanitation in the Global Sustainable Development Agenda,” with a participation of 100 nations.The summit is attended by a number of senior UN officials and aims to discuss various developments within and outside the UN system, as well as set the goals for water development in the framework of Rio+20, the UN Conference on Sustainable Development, which confirmed the crosscutting importance of water. The Kuwaiti minister warned against

the deterioration of drinking water in the Arab world due to climate changes and human negative behaviors on the environment. He noted that Kuwait suffers from the limited resource of drinking water as well, stressing the importance of preserving water resources. He added that he will hold a number of meetings with Hungarian officials where issues of common interest will be tackled and the upcoming visit of the Hungarian president to Kuwait will be discussed. The Budapest Water Summit takes place from Oct 8 to 11 and aims to contribute to the elaboration of the waterrelated Sustainable Development Goals and provide concrete guidance on the most pressing water issues - drinking water, sanitation, waste water treatment, integrated water management, international water cooperation, innovative water technologies - with a view to defining the priorities of global development policy post 2015. The Summit will also strive to offer practical and affordable solutions to the water-related challenges of developing and developed countries alike. — KUNA



Al-Ghanim satisfied with level of Arab, Islamic coordination IPU meeting in Geneva ‘a big success’ GENEVA: Kuwaiti National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim expressed satisfaction with the level of coordination among participating Arab and Islamic parliamentarians at the 129th session of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) held in Geneva. On the fringes of the IPU meeting, AlGhanim told the press that all suggestions which were made yesterday at the consultative meeting of Arab delegations were considered during Monday’s meeting, especially that of unifying efforts towards common Arab and Islamic causes. He noted that the meeting approved joining two suggestions as a move to unify efforts: one suggestion was made by Morocco on the role of parlia-

ments in addressing the deliberate criminal destruction of world heritage sites. The second was made by Palestine on the construction of Israeli settlements on Palestinian lands occupied since 1967. Al-Ghanim, who is head of the parliamentary committee at the Arab and Islamic level, extended an invitation for Arab Inter-Parliamentary Union member states to attend an extraordinary meeting in Kuwait, in order to discuss breaches of Al-Aqsa Mosque and to come up with a tangible solution to the Palestinian cause. The Arab parliamentary delegation rejected a European suggestion to amend the executive committee electoral system of IPU, and will work unani-

mously to drop the suggestion from being voted on after tomorrow, Al-Ghanim said. MPs Madhi AlHajri and Abdullah Al-Turaiji told the press that Bhutan’s membership in the IPU was approved and membership of other countries were frozen for not their lack of financial commitment to the organization. Meanwhile, two Kuwaiti MPs highlighted the need to back up the UN efforts to leverage the concepts of sustainable socio-economic development and decent life for all peoples across the world. Addressing the meeting of the Advisory Group of the IPU Committee on United Nations Affairs on the sidelines of the 129th IPU Assembly, Undersecretary of the National Assembly Caucus

Faisal Al-Shaye said Kuwait was keen on contributing to the UN efforts relating to promotion of international cooperation under the provisions of the UN Charter. “The Kuwaiti parliament responds promptly to the UN appeals for helping the countries in difficulties,” Al-Shaye said. “The parliament backs the Kuwaiti government contribution to the humanitarian role of the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) as shown in the hosting of the first International Humanitarian Pledging Conference for Syria in last January,” he affirmed. Al-Shaye suggested launching ad hoc committee at the IPU member parliaments to facilitate coordination with the UN aid agencies in defining

the priorities of aid recipients and responding to them. Meanwhile, Secretary of the National Assembly Caucus Jamal Al-Omar said the new changes and developments around the globe require concerted efforts geared to realize sustainable development and normal life for all peoples of the world. He called for working out a clear-cut time schedule and in a viable and scientific way for realizing specific development goals in such areas as social, healthcare and culture. Al-Omar also underscored the shared responsibility for protecting environment against degradation, noting that there is as interrelation between development and environment. — KUNA

VIVA launches new packages for pilgrims

KUWAIT: VIVA, Kuwait’s fastest-growing and most developed telecom operator, yesterday launched its latest roaming packages on the occasion of Hajj. VIVA’s new promotion is specially tailored for customers planning to go on their pilgrimage by offering them unlimited data roaming packages and competitive roaming voice packages that can be used while traveling in Saudi Arabia, to be used within the STC network as well as VIVA Bahrain, without having to worry about their bills. VIVA’s Roaming Data packages are a convenient and affordable way for postpaid, prepaid, and data line customers who are using BlackBerry, smartphones, tablets, or routers to surf the internet while they travel to Saudi Arabia. The special offer will give customers up to unlimited data roaming usage starting from KD 9 for bi-weekly subscription while the monthly package is for KD 18. VIVA also launched a new daily competitive data package for KD 2 giving customers 150MB for 24 hours. VIVA’s Roaming Voice package offers customers using the STC network the competitive price of 36fils per minute when calling back to Kuwait. Abdulrazzaq Bader Al-Essa - Director of Public Relation and Social Media at VIVA said: “Every year a big number of Kuwaiti citizens and residents travel to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to perform the Islamic ritual of Hajj, and the numbers are increasing steadily. At VIVA, we understand the importance of keeping communication channels between those performing their pilgrimage and their family; therefore we have launched this tailored data roaming package to meet their needs.” To receive the list of services and roaming packages, customers can send ‘3’ to ‘567’, and to find out more information about the Hajj roaming rates please visit any of VIVA’s branches across Kuwait. VIVA is the fastest-growing telecom operator in Kuwait. Launched in December 2008, VIVA makes things Possible for its customers by transforming communication, information and entertainment experiences. The company has rapidly established an unrivalled position in the market through its customer centric approach. VIVA’s quest is to be the mobile brand of choice in Kuwait by being transparent, engaging, energetic and fulfilling. VIVA continues to take a considerable share of the market by offering an innovative range of best value products, services and content propositions; a state of the art, nationwide network and world-class service.


LOCAL kuwait digest

In my view

Israel in a fix over thaw in US-Iran ties

Stop regional armament


By Dr Bader Al-Daihani

t a time when some GCC states, like Kuwait, have protection agreements (Status of Force Agreement, AKA SOFA) with the US while others actually have military US and British bases on their soil, huge amounts of money are being deducted from GCC public budgets to be spent on arms. Meanwhile, unemployment and poverty rates are increasing, housing problems are getting worse, health and educational services are deteriorating and infrastructures are ageing in GCC states. So for how long will we spend our fortune on weapons? For instance, let’s take a report prepared by AlShall Economic Consultants on September 28, 2013 about the situation in Kuwait. The reports says: “Kuwait Military expenditure in 2012 was $6.021 billion (KD 1.686 billion) with an increase of 10.2 percent. Compared to the whole economy, military expenditure increased a little bit by 0.1 percent to reach 3.3 percent, which is 0.8 points higher than international rates. Reviewing the history of Kuwaiti military expenditure, namely in the aftermath of the Liberation War and the cost of rebuilding Kuwait’s army, it is noticeable that it subsided in from 19951999 with a drop of 41.3 percent then boomed again from 2000-2004 (till Iraq invasion) by 36.4 percent. It the fluctuated from 2005-2010 and finally increased in 2011-2012 (during the Arab Spring revolutions) by 26.1 percent, to make the 2012 net military expenditure after eliminating the inflation effects, the highest ever since 1996”. So, as we see in Kuwait, Kuwait’s public budget is being drained by US and European arm manufacturers, local merchants, agents and some mediators and bureaucrats, which is being ignored by the World Bank reports and local consultant studies on the state’s budget imbalance and the deficit expected on the short run. Their eyes only focus on the government’s aid and subsidies to people with limited and medium income as well as salaries, namely those of small employees without seeing the fanatical privileges given to senior officials without due cause! Unfortunately, lawmakers, related NGOs and those interested in public concern never discuss military expenditure and the need to cut it down, as if it was a taboo despite the fact that international reports and newspapers always discuss their details. Now, in view of the global financial crisis, there is a great need to stop regional armament and cut down unnecessary military expenditure that has been draining our peoples’ fortunes and wealth, which will surely have a positive impact on solving major public problems GCC people are facing and help them avoid looking like cattle dying of thirst while carrying water on their back! —Al-Jarida


kuwait digest

A home away from home By Ahmad Al-Sarraf


y friend Yousuf has a theory: Most wealthy Kuwaitis or those with political influence have an ‘alternate’ country where they spend most if not all of their time away from home. Kuwait was introduced to modern health services nearly a hundred years ago when the American Mission Hospital was established. The first public hospital in Kuwait, the Amiri Hospital, was inaugurated 65 years ago. Despite that, Kuwait has failed as a state and government to provide anything distinguished in the medical field which all of us can be proud of. Instead, we still rush abroad for treatment, seeking better services in other countries. The problem is not in the medical staff or management, as much as it is in the political administration. The story is almost the same when it comes to education. The first modern school was opened in Kuwait more than a century ago and yet the state continues to send students abroad on scholarships with little local improvement on the academic scene. And when it comes to investment, a field in which Kuwait was once a pioneer in the region, we find today that the local environment repels investors who are eyeing better opportunities in other markets.

Even joy is absent from the lives of many at home. Many people travel regularly to look for happiness elsewhere! We hear news about someone having their wedding in Beirut, Istanbul, Dubai, etc almost every week. Meanwhile, those who long for fine arts have no other choice but to go to the Royal Opera House in Muscat, Oman, or pay extra to attend shows in Vienna, London, New York, or even beautiful Dubai. That might not be a big deal for some, but what about Kuwaitis who long for arts but cannot afford travelling to attend concerts or shows abroad? Also, what about those who are looking for distinguished education for their children or better treatment for their sick parent? Should they accept whatever is thrown at them from the fragments of knowledge, inadequate health services and a few smiles here and there? Don’t Kuwaitis who are rich and talented deserve to enjoy the best services in the world? Isn’t it a shame to see so many Kuwaitis spend their lives divided between their home country and other places? Isn’t it sad to see the wealth spent on useless projects while Kuwaitis are left to feel that they are less than others? — Al-Qabas

kuwait digest

Top priority to housing issue By Ali Mohammad Al-Fairouz


oday, we will deal with an issue that is considered one of the most popular issues that topped the survey list on citizens priorities, which is the housing issue. The housing problem did not begin yesterday but has become chronic and complex thanks to delays. Now we see that the solution is not as easy as some imagine and government’s lack of planning isn’t helping either. The government had previously promised the parliamentary housing committee many times, but it did not fulfill any of them because it is complicated and intertwines several government entities. Its problem is not linked to the housing authority only, rather with other government entities such as public works, Ministry of Electricity and Water and they are the ones that complete housing projects and then ministries of health, communications, education and interior follow with construction services. The question is: Where is the timetable that sets the completion date of any housing project, if MEW stops saving its energy capabilities, and why is the MEW incapable of executing any new housing project? There are housing cities that were late in handing keys to the owners over lack of power and water and other services, so till when will we suffer this when we have a strong budget which is sufficient for years to come? Is it the fault of officials or that of the state? How long has it been since we have been talking about power loads and turbines? Yes, we are facing a problem that may drag other issues into it, and the government is always unable to solve this problem. So, why did the housing problem become bigger than the state’s ability, and why are the housing projects

in Kuwait on paper only? Why aren’t the officials held accountable and why isn’t the government able to provide housing lands and why are the applications increasing and exceeding 100,000 amidst fears that they will touch 174,000 in 2020? We are wondering about the development plan today, which the government is bragging about every now and then, and wonder about government projects which it promised MPs but haven’t been executed over trivial reasons. As the housing crises lead the priorities of the popular survey that the National Assembly conducted, it’s become necessary for most MPs to meet the popular wish and solve the issue in cooperation with the government as soon as possible, so the next parliamentary term will take on a new direction. The government and Assembly are responsible for decisions and National Assembly members must follow the government system here. All of us know the repercussions of the housing crisis and the effect on land prices which is beyond imagination and cannot be accepted by any mind. Is it realistic for the price of a villa in Kuwait to touch a million or two? Such a crazy increase in prices is seen only here in Kuwait. Let us look at the price of land in Gulf countries for example and how flexible it is. Why isn’t it the same in Kuwait? Yes, most citizens remember the government’s procrastination and slackness in dealing with this issue and businessmen’s manipulation of land prices. Rents are now eating up almost 60 percent of monthly salaries. There are some people who think the housing issue is very difficult to uproot and criticized the survey, despite it being considered a priority now. — Al-Rai

kuwait digest

Time to reprioritize


ith the return of the new Assembly session, all Kuwaitis are looking forward to it with more enthusiasm. There are some laws or proposals that were put on hold, rejected or ignored during previous assemblies which need to be reintroduced either for discussion or a vote. These laws or proposals did not have a chance in previous assemblies for reasons unrelated to the subject matter. Whatever the policy or ideological differences were, Kuwait lost out on gaining from it and now it’s time to take a good relook and reintroduce them. The Northern Oil Fields Project is one that must be reintroduced today because of its importance, provided it’s done for the right reasons without any political ulterior motives and what happened with

By Iqbal Al-Ahmad

Dow isn’t repeated again. It is not realistic for any project to start on any kind of corrupt or suspicious footsteps. Officials must shed personal interests as much as possible even though I know it’s impossible to be 100 percent clean but I also know that we cannot stop development out of fear of corruption. I do not believe that all the countries around the world design projects and execute them cleanly but I’m sure they try to keep them as legal as possible. There are many MPs in the current Assembly who want to work, and they have the seriousness and wish to work sincerely. So let them open files and review what was introduced, what failed and what was overlooked and reprioritize and start all over again. — Al-Qabas

By Hassan Barari

he budding rapprochement between the United States and Iran has left Israel in a bit of a fix. In the wake of the recent events on the global political stage, Tel Aviv is apparently judging pros and cons of acting alone to stop Tehran from going nuclear. While Israel and the United States are still committed to the strategy of preventing Iran from developing nuclear capabilities, the difference in their approaches to deal with the matter cannot be more conspicuous. It is widely believed that America restrained Israel from carrying out airstrikes on Iranís nuclear plants in the past. On more than one occasion, Obama reportedly sent emissaries to convince Netanyahu not to launch a unilateral attack on Iranís nuclear sites. Obamaís stance has remained unchanged: America will not allow Iran to go nuclear but would prefer to give sanctions time to bite. In his last visit to Israel, Obama assured the Israelis that his country would act to prevent Iran from building a nuclear bomb. With sanctions leaving a deep wound on Iranís teetering economy and with a change in the leadership, Tehran is opting for a change in its foreign policy. The media alluded to ìheroic flexibility,î a phrase coined by the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, as a catchword for the intentions of Iran to give up on its nuclear ambitions in exchange for lifting sanctions. While it remains to be seen whether or not Iran is buying time, Obama views the change in Iranís attitude as a vindication of the success of sanctions. Of course, it is far from certain that this would satisfy the increasingly worried Israeli leaders. In his last speech at the United Nations, Netanyahu warned that his country would not hesitate to act alone if needed. And yet he endorsed the negotiations between Iran and the West, which are scheduled to start on Oct 15 in Geneva. Not surprisingly, Israel has no option but to wait for the negotiations. A unilateral airstrike while the Americans are negotiating with the Iranians seems unlikely. The situation, however, will be aggravated if Iran and the West reach an agreement that falls short of Israelís demand i.e. total dismantling of the Iranian nuclear program. Michael Herzog — an Israeli fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy ó argues that Netanyahu is hostage to the new developments that allow for a new round of talks between Iran and P5 plus one. Meanwhile, differences between Israel and its key ally ó the United States ó are to continue. Whereas Netanyahu seeks a total dismantling of Iranís nuclear program, Obama focuses more on what is achievable. Never has it been harder for the Israelis to get an American administration see Iran as an imminent threat to regional security. Netanyahuís insistence that Hassan Rowhani ó the newly elected president ó is nothing but ìa wolf in sheepís clothing,î is not expected to change much. It is hard to avoid the conclusion that America is getting weary of the Middle East and a war with Iran over the nuclear program will only be the last resort. Key to Israelís concern is the common impression among Israelis that Iran may be opting for a strategic deception. For this reason, the American administration made it perfectly clear that its rapprochement with Iran is measured and would not come at the expense of Israelís security. On many occasions, Secretary of State John Kerry said that if diplomatic efforts failed then the US would take military action. Apparently, Netanyahu is mistaking engagement with appeasement. To that Secretary of Defense Chalk Hagel said, ìArenít we wiser if we can find ways to resolve disputes, recognizing the danger, being very clear-eyed and keeping the strongest military in the world?î The American senior officials repeated one line: American will not be fooled by the Iranianís new approach and that Washington would focus on deeds not words. Thus far, the Americans and the Israelis are not on the same page. And yet the Israeli government is not in a position to play the role of spoiler. Simply put, Netanyahu cannot order an airstrike at a time the American administration is talking to Iran on the nuclear issue.

kuwait digest

What the sources fail to reveal


By Dr Terki Al-Azmi

P Dr Ali Al-Omair said in a recent statement that a number of ministers have asked to be relieved of their duties before the parliament resumes sessions on October 29. The same report which carried the lawmaker’s statements also quoted parliament sources who suggested that Oil Minister Mustafa Al-Shamali could be among those wishing to leave the Cabinet. The report also quoted MP Rakan Al-Nisf who said that “ministers need to realize that grilling motions are filed for their own good, and not against them”. First of all, I want to reiterate how bad it feels to see terms such as ‘parliament source’, ‘reliable sources’ and ‘highranking source’ mentioned repeatedly in the local press. Heavy reliance on these words negatively affects journalistic professionalism and reveals lack of transparency when officials feel the need to request anonymity before expressing any kind of opinion. Regarding the description of grilling motions as being in favor of ministers, this is an obvious concept from a constitutional standpoint. A grilling motion is a tool by which an MP utilizes his constitutional right in order to attempt to expose a flaw in a minister’s work, whereas a minister is obligated by the Constitution to answer the interpellation. And while there have always been accusations that grilling motions were filed for personal reasons, I believe it is safe to say that MPs and political experts can identify the true intentions after the grilling debate. It is not a secret that the political scene in Kuwait has been affected by struggles and frequent ‘changes of heart’ that negatively affected the democratic practice. Governmental and parliamentary work are supposed to be a joint work that involve giving advices, directions and supervision. If that joint work mentality was put into effect, both the executive and legislative authorities would find errors that have nothing to do with their work. These errors are caused by methods that ministries follow in their work and yet are put together by unqualified senior officials who lack strategic thinking, vision or practices free of personal interests. Judging by this theory, I believe that 80 percent of problems featured in Kuwait are caused by senior officials whereas ministers are directly responsible for 10 or sometimes even 20 percent. This explains how whenever it seemed that a solution was near, things always return to square one. I believe that the lack of transparency created this unusual situation that is arguably found only in Kuwait. The solution is simple: eliminating administrative corruption and achieving human development. In general, ambitions of achieving development depend on our ability to eliminate wasta (using connections to take advantage of privileges unlawfully) that is the root for all forms of corruption we experience. — Al-Rai



‘Life is Sharing’ campaign launched in Kuwait Breast cancer awareness month KUWAIT: “Hayatt”, a part of Ruqayah Abdulwahab Alqatami Breast Cancer Foundation, launched “Life is Sharing” Breast Cancer Charity Drive to raise money for patients suffering from breast cancer and raise awareness. The drive coinciding with Breast Cancer Awareness Month (October 2013) and will include a charity dinner on Oct 23, at Missoni Hotel Ballroom, and will be hosted by the famous Saudi singer Waed. The donations received from the charity drive will go towards the Breast Cancer Foundation to help breast cancer patients get the much needed treatment but also reinforce the importance of early detection, and give to all Kuwaiti women access to proper assessment of breast cancer. “Hayatt” organized the conference on breast cancer awareness to take the vital message of early cancer detection can reduce breast cancer related deaths through various programs and community activities. It was attended by Laila Alghanim, President of Hayatt- Ruqayah Abdulwahab Alqatami Breast Cancer Foundation; Dr Labiba Temmim, Executive Director and Medical Affairs, Hayatt - Ruqayah Abdulwahab Alqatami Breast Cancer Foundation, Fawzya Alomaym Executive PR Hayatt - Ruqayah Abdulwahab Alqatami Breast Cancer Foundation; members of Bader Sultan and Brothers Co , Ali Abdulwahab Co, Roche , Tanagra , Barakat travels , Alfares jewelry,Missoni Hotel as well as local media and members of Hayatt-Ruqayah Abdulwahab Breast Cancer Foundation. Speaking at the conference, Laila Alghanim, President of Hayatt Breast Cancer Foundation said, “Statistics state that early detection and

treatment can reduce breast cancer related deaths. October is observed as the breast cancer awareness month worldwide and it is important to remind women in Kuwait of the dangers of the disease. We have always been committed to promoting awareness of breast cancer; what to look for and where to go to for information.” “The strong trust and credibility that “Hayatt” enjoys is reflected in the level of support that increases year on year from our partners and the community. We are grateful to have the assistance of various government entities, corporate, consumer brands, medical institutions, individuals and their families. Each of them have continued to join hands with us to amplify our key message of constant vigilance and early detection and deepen the impact of awareness in Kuwait,” she added. Over the last 5 years, “Hayatt” began various initiatives including “Hayatt Breast Cancer Screening Center”the first in its kind at Yarmouk Al Abdulhadi Health Center which was inaugurated on the 5th of March 2012 that was made possible thanks to donations of generous philanthropists and partners. In addition, donations will be collected to cover the treatment of those who cannot afford the costs of specialized treatments. Dr. Labiba Temmim, Executive Director and Medical Affairs, Hayatt Ruqayah Abdulwahab Alqatami Breast Cancer Foundation said: “Approximately 1 in 9 women have an estimated life time risk for developing breast cancer. Everyone can join the fight by spreading knowledge about the disease, encouraging their loved ones to get screened and donating to help underprivileged women get screening and proper treatment. The earlier breast cancer is

Al-Ibrahim in Budapest for Water Summit BUDAPEST: Minister of Electricity and Water Abdulaziz Al-Ibarhim arrived here yesterday, leading Kuwait delegation to the Budapest Water Summit, hoping the high-level meeting meet its objectives. The two-day event, themed “The Role of Water and Sanitation in the Global Sustainable Development Agenda,” will open tomorrow. Al-Ibrahim and his party were welcomed at Budapest airport by Charge d’Affaires Fawwaz AlKhaled and members of the Kuwaiti diplomatic mission to Hungary. Speaking upon his arrival, the minister said the Summit aimed to to take stock of the various developments, in and outside the UN system, in preparing water-related goals for the post Rio+20 development agenda. The summit will bring together more than 1,500 participants including heads of states and governments and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, AlIbrahim noted. Based on the outcomes of various UN programs and initiatives as well as the World Water Forum series of the World Water Council, respectively, the Summit is expected to present practical, accessible and affordable solutions to the main challenges identified, he added. The Summit is expected to provide defining contributions to the elaboration of one overarching SMART (Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely) SDG on water and sanitation that corresponds and responds to multidimensional challenges. — KUNA

Kuwait ambassador lauds humanitarian efforts in Albania SARAJEVO: Kuwait’s Ambassador to Albania Najeeb Abdulrahman Al-Bader praised yesterday Kuwait Awqaf Public Foundation’s humanitarian and charitable efforts exerted all around the world. “Several developmental and cultural projects implemented by the foundation in Albania and Kosovo help improve, strengthen and enhance the two countries’ bilateral ties”, the Kuwaiti diplomat added. Al-Bader stressed the significance of the foundation’s role in bolstering bilateral ties. During his meeting with the Secretary General of Kuwait Awqaf Public Foundation Dr. Abdulmohsen AlJarallah Al-Kharafi at the Kuwaiti Embassy in the Albanian capital of Tirana, Al-Bader stressed the significance of the foundation’s role in bolstering bilateral ties between the two countries in all spheres. For his part, Dr. Al-Kharafi noted that he was briefed on the charitable projects implemented by the Kuwaiti foundation here, adding that he also visited Kuwait Autistic Centre and met with a number of people in charge there. He also delivered several lectures on Kuwait’s charitable experience and its goals that are concerned with developing and elevating the society. The Kuwait Awqaf Public Foundation, which has implemented numerous health, educational and humanitarian projects, donated 250,000 euro to create Kuwait Autistic Center as it will also grant Albania 400,000 euro to fund a number of the center’s future activities. The meeting was attended by the foundation’s director of studies and external relations Mansour AlSaqaabi and diplomatic attache at the embassy Faisal Al-Baker. — KUNA

diagnosed, the better the treatment options available and the higher the survival rate. Breast cancer is a curable disease, agonizing and painful months of chemotherapy treatment can be avoided by only doing yearly check-ups and undergoing a life- saving mammography in women.” “At “Hayatt” we strive to provide the knowledge and services necessary for women to take charge of their health. We want to raise awareness, so women in Kuwait understand the importance of early detection. We are even reaching out through various social media campaigns that will bring more awareness to the people and will encourage customers to make donations towards this worthy cause. We are delighted that our foundation and our activities are helping women to empower themselves, and take a more active role in their long-term health. I would like to add a special thanks to Nailit salon and Dolcissimo for participating to our fundraising each month of October.” concluded Dr Labiba. Alghanim concluded her speech thanking the sponsors for their support of this campaign and in particular. “Bader Sultan and Brothers Company for their unlimited support through the breast cancer early detection program and any other support needed; Ali Abdul Wahab and Sons Group of Companies and Roche , our longtime generous partner; the Sheraton Kuwait , our longtime partner; Al Qabas newspaper for supporting Hayatt from the beginning of our venture; Osrati Magazine for supporting Hayatt all the way through; Emad Al-Samhan for always giving the helping hand when needed; Tanagra; Barakat Travels; Zafaf Magazine; Alfares jewelry.”

KUWAIT: Ambassador of Mongolia to Kuwait Dr Sodnom Enkhbat and his wife, Tserennorov Oyun hosted a reception on Monday at Al-Baraka Ballroom in the Crowne Plaza Hotel on the occasion of the National Day of Mongolia. Government officials, ambassadors and other dignitaries attended the event. —- Photos by Joseph Shagra


Chemical watchdog plans to deploy second team to Syria

Pakistan pushing fighters into Kashmir before 2014 Page 12

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Myanmar frees 56 political prisoners Scores of dissidents remain behind bars YANGON: Myanmar freed dozens of detained activists yesterday, officials said, after vowing earlier this year to release all prisoners of conscience by the end of December. Some 56 inmates were set free, the latest in a series of releases that have been seen internationally as a key marker of the country’s emergence from military rule. President Thein Sein, who left yesterday for a regional summit in Brunei, announced during his first visit to London in July that there would be “no prisoners of conscience in Myanmar” by the end of the year. Activists said many of those freed yesterday were linked to ethnic minority rebel groups, with whom the government is holding peace negotiations. “Our government will release 56 political prisoners,” said presidential adviser Hla Maung Shwe, who is also a key figure in the peace talks. Thein Sein, a former general who took power in March 2011, has earned plaudits and the removal of most western sanctions for reforms that included freeing hundreds of critics detained under the previous junta. But activists say authorities are continuing to prosecute dissidents and scores remain behind bars. They accuse the government of using the headline-grabbing releases for political gain and leverage with the international community. Arbitrary imprisonment was a hallmark of the previous brutal junta, which denied the existence of political prisoners even as it meted out harsh punishments to rights activists, journalists, lawyers and performers. But the nation has since undergone dramatic change, including the release of opposition leader Aung Sang Suu Kyi from long years of house arrest and her election to parliament. Numbers for political prisoners held in Myanmar vary, but Suu Kyi’s opposition said there were around 140 activists held before Tuesday’s announcement. Activist Thet Oo said his organisation, Former Political Prisoners, estimates that around 50 new activists have been held by the current regime. “Twenty of them are in the prisons and the rest are facing trials. Most of them were charged for protesting without permission and under charges of defaming the state,” he said. Myanmar analyst Richard Horsey said the government was still arresting and detaining activists, but this was “generally in a transparent way unlike the past”. He said recent detentions have often been in “accordance with a law-even if it’s a law that has provisions that aren’t consistent with democratic freedoms”. “So the key will be, at the end of the year, has Thein Sein met his pledge on having no political prisoners, and how are the more recently arrested people classified?” he said. Many of those

Oregon bartender gets $17,500 tip

YANGON: In this Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2011 file photo, Myanmar women prisoners walk outside Insein Prison in Yangon, Myanmar. Myanmar’s President Thein Sein has pardoned 56 political prisoners, moving forward with his pledge to by the end of the year release all those jailed for opposing the government. — AP released Tuesday are believed to be from the country’s armed ethnic minority groups in the northern state of Kachin and the eastern state of Shan, according to Thet Oo. The inclusion of jailed members of the Kachin Independence Army comes amid crucial three-day peace negotiations with the rebels. Talks, which are being observed by the United Nations and are set to continue to Thursday, are part of government efforts to secure a historic nationwide ceasefire. As part of the reforms

Thein Sein’s government has reached tentative peace deals with major armed ethnic minority rebel groups in the country, which has been racked by civil wars since independence from British colonial rule in 1948. But fighting in Kachin near the northern border with China has continued since a 17-year ceasefire broke down in June last year, leaving tens of thousands displaced. Myanmar released some 70 political prisoners in July, many of whom were also from Kachin groups. — AFP

SPRINGFIELD: An Oregon bartender just got the tip of a lifetime. One of Aurora Kephart’s regulars at Conway ’s Restaurant and Lounge in Springfield often tips her with Keno tickets from the Oregon Lottery. Yesterday evening, the man w h o w i s h e s to re m a i n a n o ny m o u s a s k e d Kephart to choose two. When she checked the numbers, Kephart’s first ticket won $5. The second turned into a $17,500 gratuity. “The look on his face was incredible,” Kephart, 25, told The Register-Guard newspaper ( ). “I automatically handed it back to him; it was his ticket.” But the man wouldn’t take the ticket and made Kephart sign it so she would be the only one able to collect the prize. Kephart said 80 percent of her customers are regulars, and they were excited for her. “ The reaction was craz y,” Kephar t said. “Everyone was so amped up.” With the bar busy, Kephart went right back to work, her brain “scrambled” by the big tip. The next day, she claimed her prize at the Oregon Lottery office in Salem. Kephart said she gave the man a percentage of her winnings. “I just couldn’t not give him some of it,” she said. Kephart said she plans to buy a new couch with her share and save the rest. Those modest plans earned her teasing from the bar’s regulars, but she had been looking for a couch before going to work Tuesday and was scared off by the prices. “I never realized how expensive couches were,” she said. “Instead of waiting till Christmas or later, now I can buy something I really need.” — AP



Yemen federal structure to be resolved in days: Hadi SANAA: Yemen’s president said yesterday the question of turning the country into a federal state, which has so far delayed a conclusion to reconciliation talks, will be resolved within days. Addressing participants at a national dialogue session in Sanaa, Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi said: “We are a few days away from reaching a just solution to the southern issue... within a united and federal Yemen.” The onceindependent southerners are demanding two entitiesone in the north and one in the south-while northerners want a federal state made up of several regions. Hadi referred to a “broad national agreement reached on sev-

Chemical watchdog plans to deploy second team to Syria DAMASCUS: The world’s chemical watchdog said yesterday it will send a second team of inspectors to help dismantle Syria’s arsenal, as regime warplanes bombed rebels in the northwest of the country. Meanwhile Russia praised Damascus for “very actively” cooperating with the chemical weapons inspectors already on the ground. The ongoing violence underlined comments on Monday from UN chief Ban Ki-moon, who warned that the weapons inspectors face unprecedented danger. In a report to the UN Security Council, Ban said it would take 100 foreign experts to complete “an operation the likes of which, quite simply, has never been tried before”. Yesterday, the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) said it would send a second team to Damascus to bolster an existing UN-OPCW group on the ground. “ That will augment the advance team of OPCW experts, who have been in Syria since 1 October conducting verification and destruction activities,” it said, without providing further details on the new inspectors. OPCW Director General Ahmet Uzumcu said the process of destroying Syria’s chemical arsenal would be “long and difficult” but welcomed a “constructive beginning” to the operation. The inspectors have until mid2014 to verify and destroy Syria’s chemical arsenal under the terms of a UN Security Council resolution that enshrines a US-Russian deal. The deal averted threatened US military action in response to August 21 sarin gas attacks outside Damascus in which hundreds of people died. Violence in the country has continued, with Syrian jets on Tuesday firing at rebels in the northwestern province of Idlib a day after they launched a major assault against two military bases. The rebel operation dubbed “ The Earthquake” is intended to capture the Wadi Deif and Hamidiyeh bases near the opposition-held town of Maaret al-Numan. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said 10 regime troops and five rebels had been killed in the clashes. Russian President Vladimir Putin meanwhile praised Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad for his government’s cooperation with a team of international weapons inspectors. “Doubts about whether the Syrian leadership would adequately respond to the decision taken on chemical weapons-these doubts did not bear out,” Russian news agencies quoted Putin as telling reporters at a regional summit in Indonesia. “The Syrian leadership has very actively joined this work and is acting in a transparent manner, helping international agencies,” said Putin. On Monday, Ban warned of the dangers the inspectors face in Syria, where more than 115,000 people have been killed since March 2011, according to the Observatory. The experts would have to work in “dangerous and volatile” conditions, particularly in urban areas such as Damascus, Homs and Aleppo, the UN leader warned. “Heavy artillery, air strikes, mortar barrages and the indiscriminate shelling of civilian areas are commonplace and battle lines shift quickly.” Some 19 OPCW arms experts and 16 UN logistics and security personnel are in Syria and have started to destroy weapons production facilities. Ban recommended the team be increased to about 100 scientists, logistics and security experts who will stay for up to a year. The mission will have bases in Damascus and Cyprus. Syria has already made a declaration of its weapons facilities. And the UN resolution set a November 1 deadline for the eradication of production and chemical mixing facilities. That work started Sunday when the first “missile warheads, aerial bombs and mixing and filling equipment” were cut up and destroyed, according to the UN. The Security Council resolution passed on September 27 threatened “measures” under Chapter VII of the UN Charter if an infringement of the disarmament accord is proved. Chapter VII allows for possible military action or sanctions. But US Secretary of State John Kerry has welcomed the progress made so far. “I think it’s extremely significant that yesterday, Sunday, within a week of the resolution being passed, some chemical weapons were being destroyed,” he told reporters in Indonesia on Monday. “I think it’s a credit to the Assad regime, frankly. It’s a good beginning and we welcome a good beginning.” — AFP

eral aspects of a settlement to the southern issue,” adding that “it will not be difficult to overcome a few remaining issues.” The dialogue was scheduled to end on September 18 but was delayed after participants, who had already agreed to the concept of a federal structure, failed to agree on the numbers of regions that will constitute the future state. The dialogue is aimed at drawing up a new constitution for Yemen and preparing for elections in February. The dialogue offers “a historic opportunity for those who sincerely believe the southern cause is a just one,” Hadi said. The southern question has been a major

stumbling-block for the talks launched in March, with hardline factions of the Southern Movement boycotting the discussions and demanding secession. After the former North and South Yemen united in 1990, the south broke away in 1994, triggering a brief civil war that ended with the region being overrun by northern troops. Hadi warned that secession of the south would “be a catastrophe that future generations will never forgive us for.” UN envoy to Yemen Jamal Benomar also addressed the session, assuring Yemenis of the international community’s support for their “peaceful” political transition. Benomar, a key mediator throughout the UN-backed

talks, said: “I am happy to see (participants) moving towards an agreement on the outlines of a new federal structure.” “But I remind Yemenis that the decision is theirs and they must bear the consequences of their choice.” Separatist groups have called for a rally in Aden, capital of the formerly independent south, in support of complete secession. The meetings, which will discuss the final reports of the work groups formed during the conference are expected to continue until October 13. They will then take a break during the Muslim Eid al-Adha feast before resuming on October 21. —AFP



Soldiers in fatal stabbing due in Washington court SEATTLE: There may have been some “trash talk” between a car full of black soldiers and three white soldiers on foot, but race was not the main issue in the weekend stabbing death of a soldier near a large Army base in Washington, police and prosecutors said. A key piece of evidence was found Monday when searchers located the knife in a wooded area of Tillicum, about 3 miles from Lakewood where the soldier was killed. Both communities are near Joint Base Lewis-McChord. Three soldiers arrested for investigation of murder where scheduled to

make their first court appearance yesterday in Pierce County Superior Court. Spc. Tevin Geike, 20, of Summerville, SC, was walking with two other soldiers early Saturday when words were exchanged with someone in a car. The car stopped and five people confronted the three, police said. The groups were separating after realizing they were all active duty soldiers when Geike was fatally stabbed. bPolice had said a racial motive was under investigation - and potentially a hate crime. However, both prosecutor Mark Lindquist and Lakewood Police

Lt. Chris Lawler said there was no indication that there was racial hatred or that the men were seeking out people of a certain race to attack. “Both friends of the victim and friends of the suspect agree that race was not the issue here,” Lindquist told The News Tribune. “Detectives reported to me that there may have been some trash talk, but that race was a non-issue.” Two of the five suspects are cooperating with law enforcement and were not being held in custody, authorities said. Lindquist told The Seattle Times it appears “there was only one individual who stabbed the

victim.” He said prosecutors were trying to learn more about the roles of the other two men arrested. One of those arrested, Jeremiah Hill, had asked for first aid Saturday for a knife wound on his right hand, according to police. Authorities said another soldier stated that Hill said he cut his hand when stabbing a guy to death over the weekend. Police described Hill, 23, as the “main suspect” and said he did not make a statement and asked for a lawyer. Cedarium Johnson, 21, and Ajoni Runnion-Bareford, 21, were also booked into the Pierce County Jail on

Monday, Lakewood police said. Someone in the car shouted a racial comment toward the white soldiers who shouted something back, leading to the face-off, police said. As the men from the car were leaving, one appeared to bump into Geike as he walked past. Geike’s friends discovered he had been stabbed. The two groups of soldiers did not know each other, police said. Geike was an aviation operations specialist and a member of the 7th Infantry Division. He entered the Army in October 2010 and arrived at JBLM in April 2011. —AP

Azerbaijan president set to cruise to third term Aliyevs hold tight to power

BUENOS AIRES: Banners and statues are displayed outside the Favalora Hospital, placed there by supporters of Argentina’s President Cristina Fernandez who is undergoing surgery to her skull to siphon out blood that is pressuring her brain, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, yesterday. The surgery on the 60-year-old leader worried many Argentines, who have struggled to imagine their country with anyone else at its center. The sign at top right reads in Spanish “The people need you.” —AP

Argentine president undergoes surgery to remove blood clot BUENOS AIRES: Argentine President Cristina Fernandez had surgery yesterday to remove blood from the surface of her brain, sidelining her three weeks ahead of a key mid-term election and at the apex of a rancorous court battle with the nation’s “holdout” creditors. The president’s condition, described as a subdural hematoma, came from hitting her head in a fall in August. The operation, from which she is expected to fully recover, involves draining blood that has pooled between the brain and the skull. On Saturday she was told to rest for a month due to her condition. The surgery was announced on Monday after the 60year-old leader complained of tingling in her left arm. Supporters, some carrying signs that said “Hang In There Cristina” and “The Country Is With You,” gathered outside the Fundacion Favaloro hospital, where the surgery was being conducted. The operation comes at a sensitive time for her administration, with Argentines griping about double-digit inflation and government-imposed currency controls that have clamped down on access to US dollars as part of an effort to halt capital flight. The president’s policies promote economic growth at the cost of inflation clocked by private economists at about

25 percent per year, one of the highest rates in the world. When she became ill on Saturday, Fernandez was in campaign mode, making speeches on behalf of political allies running in the Oct. 27 midterm primary, an election that will determine whether her coalition remains in control of Congress in her final two years as leader of the grains-exporting country. Fernandez, who was re-elected in 2011 on promises of increasing the role of government in Latin America’s No. 3 economy, is also embroiled in a legal battle against holdout bond investors who declined to participate in Argentina’s 2005 and 2010 debt restructurings and are suing for full repayment. The US Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear a preliminary appeal filed by Argentina in the case, which could go on for another year after more than a decade of bouncing around the U.S. federal courts. World markets are watching the case for the implications it might have on future sovereign debt restructurings. The International Monetary Fund has voiced fear that if Argentina is forced to pay the holdouts the $1.3 billion they are demanding, it would make it more difficult for cash-strapped countries to renegotiate their bond obligations. — Reuters

BAKU: Without ever hitting the campaign trail, Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev is coasting to a third term in an election that critics say has been preceded by a wide crackdown on his foes. Few signs of election season can be seen around the oil-rich Caspian Sea nation, with campaign posters limited to sanctioned locations and state television barely mentioning today’s presidential vote. “The outcome is not in doubt,” said Alex Nice, a Caucasus analyst at the Londonbased Economist Intelligence Unit. “Ilham Aliyev should win comfortably in the first round.” The 51-year-old leader first came to power in a 2003 vote following the death of his father Heydar, a former KGB officer and Communist-era boss who had ruled the country for 10 years. Aliyev was re-elected in 2008 with 89 percent of the vote in a poll Western observers refused to call free and fair. Now, after a disputed 2009 referendum allowed Aliyev to run again, opinion polls again give the incumbent more than 80 percent of the vote as he bids to extend his family ’s decades-long grip on power against nine unheralded rivals. Aliyev has opted not to campaign, refusing to join televised debates or hold public rallies. Those backing him argue that the president’s economic record speaks for itself. Fuelled by billions of petrodollars, living standards in the former Soviet nation of 9.5 million people have risen steadily in the past decade, with Azerbaijan becoming an increasingly important energy supplier to Europe. “The people of Azerbaijan want stability, development and a leader that can represent Azerbaijan at the highest level,” said ruling party lawmaker Mubariz Gurbanli, who is heading Aliyev’s shadow campaign. Yet his foes argue that Aliyev’s cruise to

another five-year term rests on a renewed clampdown on dissent, with scores of his rivals jailed on charges ranging from drug to weapon possession, which the opposition says are fabricated. During a rare outburst of public discontent earlier this year, authorities used force to suppress a spate of anti-government protests, including several days of rioting in the town of Ismayilli that targeted government buildings. Normally fragmented, Azerbaijan’s weakened opposition-much of which boycotted the 2008 poll-in May sparked hope of a major challenge by agreeing to rally around a single challenger. Initially that choice settled on the Oscarwinning screenwriter Rustam Ibragimbekov. But when his candidacy was rejected by authorities over his dual Russian citizenship, the opposition switched to historian and former lawmaker Jamil Hasanli. Hasanli, who has managed to mobilise thousands of supporters at rallies but is only expected to poll in the single digits, has campaigned on a pledge to step down after two years if elected and switch Azerbaijan to a parliamentary system. In pre-election debates against the other eight challengers to Aliyev, Hasanli, 61, has accused the president of allowing corruption to flourish, and charged that only voterigging and a skewed playing field can see the incumbent re-elected. “Ilham Aliyev’s so-called victories have only ever been achieved through falsification,” Hasanli told AFP. Aliyev for his part is expected to continue treading a cautious path between the West and Russia, ensuring that Azerbaijan remains a key energy source for Europe while not upsetting its giant northern neighbour. At home however, with oil production peaking and new natural gas fields yet to come online, analysts say that Aliyev will have a harder time keeping rising anger

LONDON: In this Monday, July 13, 2009 file photo, Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev and his wife Mehriban Aliyeva talk with British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and his wife Sarah Brown outside Brown’s official residence at 10 Downing Street, in central London, following their meeting. Oil-rich Azerbaijan is booming and the wealth is trickling down to its poorest people. —AP over corruption and inequality in check. “Average wages rose by over 10 percent a year in real terms in 2003-12 — those k i n d s o f grow t h r a te s w i l l n e ve r b e a c h i e ve d a g a i n ,” s a i d N i ce f ro m t h e E co n o m i s t I nte l l i g e n ce U n i t . “ S o t h e authorities will have to manage expectations carefully, and focus on improving the quality of public administration and services if they want to head off discontent.” —AFP

Canadian PM ‘concerned’ by Brazil spying allegations OTTAWA: Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper expressed concern yesterday about allegations that Canada’s signals intelligence agency had targeted Brazil and said officials were reaching out to their Brazilian counterparts. Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff on Monday demanded Canada explain a media report that said the Communications Security Establishment Canada (known as CSE or CSEC) - the equivalent of the top-secret U.S. National Security Agency - had spied on Brazil’s Mines and Energy Ministry. The affair is a potential embarrassment for Harper, who visited Brazil in 2011 and held talks with Rousseff in a bid to deepen ties with a regional power that is both a trading partner and a competitor. “Canadian officials are reaching out very proactively to their counterparts ... I’m obviously very concerned about this story and some of the reports around it, very concerned,” Harper told reporters in Indonesia on the sidelines of an Asian summit. He added: “That said, you know I cannot comment on national security operations.” Harper did not give details of which Brazilian officials had been approached. A spokesman for Foreign Minister John Baird said Canada’s ambassador to

Brazil “speaks with the foreign ministry on a regular and ongoing basis” but declined to comment further. Defence Minister Rob Nicholson, who is ultimately responsible for CSE, declined to discuss the allegations when speaking to reporters on Monday. There could be worse to come for Ottawa. Glenn Greenwald, the reporter who broke the story with the aid of former US spy agency contractor Edward Snowden, told the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. that he had evidence of more spying abroad by Canada. CSE is part of the so-called Five Eyes intelligence-sharing network that also includes the United States, Britain, New Zealand and Australia. Last month Rousseff canceled a state visit to the United States in October over revelations the NSA had spied on her personal communications and those of other Brazilians. Wesley Wark, one of Canada’s leading intelligence experts, told Reuters he doubted CSE had planned to steal Brazilian commercial secrets and then pass them onto Canadian firms. “It was probably something assigned to them to work on by their Five Eyes partners, presumably the NSA, which of course has already been

implicated in Brazilian intelligence gathering,” said Wark, a professor at the University of Ottawa. “I don’t think there’s much indication CSEC has been devoting resources - particularly after 9/11 - to economic intelligence gathering,” he said, adding it was quite possible Harper did not know about the Brazil operation. Bilateral relations have improved markedly from the period around 2001, when the two sides were involved in disputes over Brazilian beef exports and whether Canada was illegally subsidizing foreign sales of airliners. “Brazil is a priority market for Canada. It is a major economic player, not just in South America, but also globally, as our 11th largest trading partner globally,” Canada’s foreign trade ministry said in a statement in July this year. Bilateral trade has grown by more than 25 percent over the last five years, reaching C$6.6 billion ($6.4 billion) in 2012. Wark said information gained by CSEC might have helped the Canadian government set its economic priorities. “I’m not sure that’s worth the price of a downturn in political relations between the two countries and someone should have calculated that,” he said. — Reuters

Vietnam lets churches thrive, keeps control KRET KROT: A year ago in this poor hill-tribe village, police rounded up members of a small Catholic sect who were accused of trying to create an independent state. The leaders are in jail, followers who escaped have fled into the jungle and officers patrolling the muddy streets warn people to shun that offshoot of the faith. But the crackdown didn’t affect activities at the village’s church - actually an old lady’s house with a white cross fixed to a corrugated iron wall - or a larger church a short hike away, where priests teach young boys math and Vietnamese language in neat classrooms. A rare unescorted trip to villages in Vietnam’s tightly controlled Central Highlands revealed the Communist government’s twin approaches to religion: It allows state-sanctioned faiths to grow and even thrive, but continues to keep a close watch on all religious institutions. All perceived challenges to its rule, religiously inspired or not, are harshly repressed. The country’s record on religious freedom is closely tracked by Washington. The U.S. seeks

closer ties with Vietnam, a former enemy turned important counterbalance to China in Asia, but it also wants Hanoi to show greater respect for human rights. Concerns by Congress over human rights could torpedo a free-trade deal Washington is negotiating with Vietnam and other Asia-Pacific nations, US officials say. Religious tension runs particularly deep in the Central Highlands, home to most of Vietnam’s ethnic minorities, who are known collectively as Montagnard. Many have embraced Christianity, in part to distinguish themselves from Vietnam’s majority Kinh population, which is largely Buddhist. The Kinh have migrated to the highlands in large numbers since the Vietnam War, igniting tensions over land and fears among minority groups that their culture and language are being diluted. Human rights groups are not allowed in the Central Highlands’ Gia Lai province, and trips by journalists and diplomats are normally strictly controlled, making independent information difficult to come by. In 2011, before the Kret Krot

arrests, Human Rights Watch reported that 250 Montagnards were imprisoned on national security charges. State media accounts of arrests, public trials and “renunciations” of faith are also common. An Associated Press reporting team met pastors, priests and ordinary worshippers in the area late last month, both independently and as part of a government-arranged tour for a group of visiting American Christians. Those people presented by the government had a uniformly positive view of religious freedom in the highlands. Officials took a note of everything that was said in the meetings. While the delegation was being bused around the town of Pleiku, police were effectively holding the wife of a jailed Baptist preacher under house arrest nearby. Tran Thi Hong needed to buy medicine for a feverish child, but police wrapped wire around her front gate to keep her from leaving. It was unclear whether the action was related to the delegation’s trip or to the presence of a foreign journalist; police declined to comment.—AP



Putin demands Dutch apology for diplomat’s alleged beating Incident further strains bilateral ties MALE: In this photograph taken on September 7, 2013, Maldivian former President and Presidential candidate Mohamed Nasheed smiles as he casts his vote at a local polling station in Male. — AFP

Maldives asks for support after election annulled MALE: The Maldives government yesterday urged all parties to support fresh elections after the Supreme Court annulled last month’s results, even though international observers had said those polls were free and fair. The government of the honeymoon islands also called for foreign support for the new presidential polls expected to be held by October 20 amid deepening international concern about political turmoil in the country. The court late Monday ordered a fresh ballot, annulling the first round of voting on September 7 which was won by former leader Mohamed Nasheed who claims he was ousted in a coup last year. The court cited allegations of electoral fraud in the September poll, which was intended to install a legitimate government after a violent change of power in February 2012 when Nasheed stepped down following a mutiny by police. The government said in a statement it “seeks support of friendly governments and international organisations to assist the government and all related parties... and encourage everyone concerned to respect and abide by the Supreme Court ruling”. President Mohamed Waheed, a former UN diplomat who has antagonised foreign allies since taking office after Nasheed, pledged a “smooth transfer of power” to the winner of the new election. Nasheed’s Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) ruled out campaigning against the court’s decision after weeks of protests, saying it was confident of winning fresh elections in a “landslide” and avoiding a run-off. “The question of accepting the court decision or not does not arise,” MDP leader and former foreign minister Ahmed Naseem said. “The main idea is to go along with the election. It will be quite a landslide for us. People are fed up (with the current regime). We will get back to democracy very soon,” he told reporters in Sri Lanka’s capital Colombo. Naseem is among MDP leaders visiting Sri Lanka to encourage diplomats to closely monitor elections in a bid to ensure they are free and fair. The comments come after several weeks of protests since the Supreme Court suspended a run-off election scheduled to take place on September 28. The court ruled on Monday that there was evidence of more than 5,000 irregularities on the electoral list, based on a police investigation, which could have influenced the order of the second and third-placed candidates. Nasheed, the islands’ first democratically elected president, won the first round overwhelmingly with 45.45 percent, ahead of Abdullah Yameen, who garnered 25.35 percent. The third-placed candidate, businessman Gasim Ibrahim, filed the court case alleging fraud after he polled 24.07 percent. Delegations from the Commonwealth, the United Nations and the European Union as well as local observer groups had declared the first round free and fair, saying any discrepancies would not have affected the result. The court ordered that if no candidate secured an absolute majority in the fresh elections later this month, then a run-off election should be held before November 4. A new president must be in office by November 11, a deadline set by the 2008 constitution that ended 30 years of one-party rule by autocrat Maumoon Abdul Gayoom. There was no immediate comment from the Maldives Elections Commission, but the MDP said it believed the commission could organise a fresh vote in such a short period of time. Hours before the ruling, six masked men set fire to a private television station that supports Nasheed’s campaign. It was back on air by the afternoon despite suffering extensive damage. “This criminal act is a direct blow to freedom of information and we deplore the attitude of the police, who failed to do what was necessary to prevent the attack,” media rights group Reporters Without Borders said in a statement. It said the head of the channel, who was beaten with iron bars in February and left for dead, had requested protection a few hours before the arson attack. — AFP

Italy migrant death toll rises to 274 LAMPEDUSA: Italian divers yesterday recovered the bodies of more migrants from the wreck of a smugglers’ ship that sank off the tiny island of Lampedusa, raising the death toll to 274.Coast Guard Commander Filippo Marini said 42 bodies were recovered from within the ship’s hold, while one was spotted by a helicopter floating near the wreck. Marini said the search would continue as long as weather allows. Just 155 migrants, most if not all from Eritrea, survived Thursday’s shipwreck. Survivors said there were some 500 people on board when the ship capsized and sank in sight of land. A disproportionate number of the dead are women: So far the bodies of 81 women have been recovered, while only six of the survivors were female. Eight of the dead are children. “Inside, we’re finding more women than men,” Gianni Dessi, the coast guard official coordinating the diving operation, told Sky TG24. “We hope not, but we expect to find more children.” He said the scene inside the ship’s hold is tough for divers, but that “maintaining cold blood is a quality that helps the operation.” The survivors were helping with the identification of the bodies, mostly through photographs. In some cases, divers also have recovered documents. Thursday’s shipwreck has one of the highest verified death tolls among migrant ship disasters in the Mediterranean Sea. Humanitarian organizations have had reports of large numbers of migrants being lost at sea, including one boat with 300 that disappeared in 2011, but the bodies in such cases are never recovered. Also yesterday, prosecutors in Agrigento, Sicily, said they had detained a 35-year-old Tunisian man who is believed to have been the captain of the ship. The suspect faces charges of aiding illegal immigration and multiple counts of homicide.Tens of thousands of migrants from Africa and the Middle East try to cross the Mediterranean Sea each year, seeking a better life in Europe. Hundreds die in the process. — AP

Islamists step up attacks in north Mali BAMAKO: Islamic extremists have taken the offensive around Gao in north Mali, wounding two civilians yesterday when they blew up a bridge, a day after shelling the town and injuring a soldier. “Early this Tuesday, Islamists dynamited one of two small bridges near ... Bentia, about 50 kilometres (31 miles) from the border with Niger, leaving two civilians wounded,” said Ibrahim Cisse, a local councillor for the Gao region. Cisse said that the assailants “wearing turbans” arrived by motorbike at the bridge that crosses the Niger River at Bentia, then destroyed it. “In this place... there are two small bridges. The aim of the Islamists was to blow up both bridges, but fortunately only the old one was badly damaged,” a police source in Gao said. “The new bridge, which is the most frequently used, sustained only very slight damage,” the source added. Malian soldiers were sent to the spot, along with French troops deployed in the desert north of the vast country, “to avoid other acts of sabotage” by armed extremists, the police source said. Islamist groups linked to Al-Qaeda were driven out of Gao, the largest town in the north, along with Kidal and Timbuktu, after they occupied all three in the wake of a coup in Bamako last year. France keeps 3,000 troops in its former colony out of a contingent it despatched last January to help end the Islamist occupation, but Paris plans to draw down the force to 1,000 men by the end of the year. The bridges at Bentia were attacked a day after armed Islamists fired shells on Gao itself, wounding a Malian soldier, and come 10 days after a suicide attack in Timbuktu killed two civilians and four bombers, as well as wounding seven Malian soldiers. A spokesman for an Al-Qaeda splinter group, the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO), on Tuesday claimed responsibility for both the Gao attacks and warned of further operations, in a message to AFP. “In the name of all mujahedeen, we claim the attacks against the evil-doers in Gao and the attack on the bridge (that served) to transport the enemies of Islam into the land of Islam,” Abou Walid Sahraoui said, warning that “attacks on the enemies of Islam will continue”. — AFP

NUSA DUA: - Russian President Vladimir Putin demanded an apology from the Netherlands yesterday after what Moscow says was an attack on a Russian diplomat in The Hague by armed men over the weekend. Russia has lodged a formal diplomatic protest over the incident, in which it said a minister-counsellor at its embassy in the Netherlands, Dmitry Borodin, was badly beaten in his home in front of his children by the unidentified assailants. “We are awaiting an explanation, an apology and also punishment of those responsible,” Putin said at a news conference after an Asia-Pacific summit in Indonesia, calling the incident a “very rude violation” of diplomatic rules. “Depending on how the Dutch side conducts itself, we will react,” Putin said. The Dutch Foreign Affairs Ministry said in a statement that the government would apologise to Moscow if a police investigation found Borodin’s right to diplomatic immunity under the Vienna Convention had been violated. Earlier, a Dutch police spokeswoman in The Hague, Ellen van Zijl, confirmed there had been an incident involving a Russian diplomat, adding: “This man is fine. He is not in the hospital.” Dutch news agency ANP said police had visited the home of Borodin, who is number two at the embassy, after receiving a complaint from neighbours about his treatment of his children. A spokeswoman for the Russian embassy in The Hague, Sofia Sarenkova, said she believed such a complaint was “one of the pretexts” for the incident. The national Dutch child protection agency and social services in The Hague have not received any reports relating to the incident, officials said. Sarenkova said the men who visited Borodin’s apartment were “wearing something like police uni-

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin forms” but that they did not identify themselves. She said they pushed Borodin to the ground and beat him with a baton before taking him to a police station. In Moscow, the Russian Foreign Ministry summoned the Dutch ambassador on Tuesday to demand an “exhaustive explanation”. The incident adds to tensions between Russia and the Netherlands, which are already at odds over the prosecution on piracy charges of environmental activists involved in a protest against Arctic oil drilling. Last Friday, the Netherlands launched legal proceedings against Russia over the detention of Greenpeace activists on a Dutch-registered ship after their protest at an oil rig off Russia’s north coast. Two of the 30 people arrested are Dutch. On a visit to the Netherlands in April, Putin faced protests from gay rights activists over what human rights organisations say is repression of homosexuals in Russia. Putin denied Russia discriminates against gays. —Reuters



Philippines’ Aquino expresses ‘regret’ over HK deaths NUSA DUA: Philippine President Benigno Aquino expressed regret over a Manila hostage crisis that left eight Hong Kong residents dead in 2010, but the Chinese territory’s leader said yesterday his words were not enough. Aquino made the comments during a 30-minute meeting with Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying on Monday at an Asia-Pacific leaders’ summit in the Indonesian island of Bali. “Again, we expressed our deepest regret (and said) that it’s so contrary to how we treat visitors in our country,” Aquino told accompanying Filipino

reporters, according to transcripts of the interview released by his office yesterday. Aquino said he emphasised to Leung that the apology did not mean that “we are at fault as a country, as a government as a people”. “We pointed out, that from our perspective, there is one lone gunman responsible for this tragedy,” Aquino said. In 2011 Aquino released a similar statement of regret, while insisting no formal apology would be given. Asked whether Leung accepted his expression of regret, Aquino said: “More or less. I think he mentioned something like ‘We

recognise that in your culture personal fault is what you apologise for’.” However Leung gave a less positive assessment of the talks. “The Philippine side, at the beginning, took the position that the matter has been resolved. I did not agree,” he told Hong Kong reporters in Bali. “I believe, and I made the case to the Philippine side, that this matter, unless it is resolved properly, will continue to stand in the way in the normal relationships between Hong Kong and the Philippines.” Hong Kong has long demanded a formal apology plus compensation for the

relatives of the victims and for the injured. A disgruntled former policeman hijacked a tourist bus packed with Hong Kong tourists in Manila in 2010 in a desperate bid to regain his job. After lengthy negotiations, police launched a bungled assault that left the gunman and eight hostages dead, plus seven wounded. In August survivors and relatives of the dead sued the Philippine government in a Hong Kong court to demand compensation and an official apology. The incident enraged Hong Kong, a city where an estimated 250,000 Filipino migrants work, many as domes-

tic helpers. The Hong Kong government continues to warn its residents against travelling to the Philippines. The issue surfaced again this week during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Bali, when Indonesia revoked credentials for nine Hong Kong journalists who had shouted questions at Aquino about the incident. Aquino said on Monday he agreed with the expulsion. “Anywhere we go, we are expected to conform to certain norms of behaviour,” he said, adding that the journalists were “very aggressive”. — AFP

Pakistan pushing fighters into Kashmir before 2014 Biggest incursion in years as ceasefire frays

HYDERABAD: Supporters of ‘United Andhra Pradesh’ join hands and shout slogans during their hunger strike at the Andhra Pradesh Secretariat in Hyderabad, India, yesterday. — AP

Blackouts, curfews, protests over India’s newest state NEW DELHI: Blackouts hit emergency services and industry in parts of India’s Andhra Pradesh state yesterday, the third day of a strike by public workers protesting against a government decision to split the southern state in two. The move to carve out a new state called Telangana triggered violent protests over the weekend and officials said a curfew was imposed for two days in Vizianagaram, one of 13 districts of coastal Andhra Pradesh where many people are opposed to the state being divided. The state is a hub for Western IT giants and Google has its Indian headquarters in its capital, Hyderabad. Microsoft and Dell also have offices in the city which will remain the common capital for the two states for 10 years. Tech companies have largely been unaffected by the protests. The ruling Congress party approved the creation of Telangana in July, fanning the embers of political division within the state. The cabinet cleared the proposal on Thursday. Ashok Babu Parchuri, president of a federation representing striking state government employees, said their action had disrupted train services and water supplies and closed hospitals. “Unless we get some political assurance

about keeping the state united, we cannot go back,” he said. Supporters of the split say the Telangana region’s economic development has been neglected in favour of the richer and more powerful coastal region of Andhra. Critics say the Congress party had long resisted calls for the new state and only took the step to win votes in coming elections. The undivided state sent 34 members of parliament to the national parliament for Congress and its allies in 2009, making it an important political prize. Many government employees have been on strike since Aug. 12, but the protests have escalated since Sunday when electricity workers joined the agitation. Srinivas Ayyadevara president of the Federation of Andhra Pradesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry said supplies and deliveries for businesses were hit by train cancellations and the power outages were disrupting factories. “This time everything has been affected,” Ayyadevara said. “It has eaten into our production schedules,” he said, adding that businesses were thinking twice about deals with companies in Andhra Pradesh. “They’re now wary of placing orders.” — Reuters

NEW DELHI/SRINAGAR: India’s army said yesterday that Pakistani troops had helped a group of 30 to 40 insurgents stage the biggest incursion in Kashmir in years, linking it to a plan to push fighters into the region as foreign forces withdraw from neighbouring Afghanistan. Army chief General Bikram Singh’s remarks were the first direct allegation against Pakistan since the heavily-armed fighters crossed the Line of Control in Kashmir last month in a setback for a government already seen as soft and indecisive. The men were holed up in an abandoned village in the Keran sector for nearly a fortnight, an Indian army source earlier told Reuters. That prompted comparisons with the Kargil conflict further north in 1999, when hundreds of Pakistan-backed irregular troops occupied bunkers along a vast swath of the frontier. “With the eyeball-to-eyeball deployment along the Line of Control, it is well-nigh impossible for the terrorists to do any activity without the knowledge of the Pakistani army,” Singh told the Times Now television. India and Pakistan have fought three wars since independence from Britain in 1947, two of them over Kashmir. The two armies frequently exchanged artillery fire

across the Himalayan region for years until a 2003 ceasefire that has been fraying in recent months. Pakistan was tr ying to push more fighters into Kashmir before winter sets in, Singh separately told NDTV, ahead of the withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan. Indian intelligence officials have warned that militant groups that have been fighting in Afghanistan for several years have been turning their sights to Kashmir as foreign forces leave to reinvigorate the nearly 24-year insurgency there. “Will have to see what happens in Afghanistan in 2014. Pakistan want to push in many terrorists before winter,” Singh was quoted as saying in an interview to be broadcast later by NDTV. His comments were posted on NDT V’s Twitter account. Pakistan denies it is helping militants cross the largely fenced border with India in Kashmir and has urged India to hold talks to tackle the decades-old dispute over the region. Pakistan’s envoy to India Salman Bashir was quoted as saying this week that Pakistan also had concerns and that the civilised way to deal with bilateral problems was to hold talks. Talks have been slow to recover since the November 2008 attacks in Mumbai by Pakistan-based gun-

SRINAGAR: Indian army commander Lt. Gen. Sanjiv Chachra, addresses a news conference in Srinagar, India, yesterday. The Indian military called off a search yesterday for suspected rebels along the disputed border with Pakistan, after two weeks of battles in the Himalayan region of Kashmir. — AP “A large group of terrorists infilmen in which 166 people were killed. New Delhi has demanded trating  you mean to say that this is that Pakistan act against the men happening without the complicity who plotted the attack and take of Pakistan Army? This is ridicudown what it calls the infrastruc- lous,” Lieutenant General Sanjiv Chachra, northern army commandture of terrorism on Pakistan soil. For the latest Kashmir intrusion, er told reporters in Srinagar, the the Indian army cited as proof of summer capital of Jammu and Pakistani involvement radio inter- Kashmir. He said the army had killed cepts, weapons with Pakistani markings seized from the area of eight militants and seized 50 operation and covering fire provid- pieces of weaponry. Search operaed by Pakistani troops while the tions in the area have since been insurgents breached the de facto called off but the army is stepping up surveillance, he said. — Reuters border.

China sacks official over lavish, three-day wedding BEIJING: China sacked an official for “extravagant waste” after he spent an estimated 1.6 million yuan ($260,000) on a lavish, three-day wedding for his son, state media said yesterday, the latest move in a crackdown on profligate lifestyles and graft. Ma Linxiang, a deputy village chief from the Beijing suburb of Qingheying, hosted the estimated 250-table wedding at a convention centre that was part of the main 2008 Beijing Olympics venue during the week-long National Day holiday last week, newspapers reported. Ma told the Beijing News that the wedding was hosted by both families, and that he “couldn’t stop” the bride’s family from splurging on the venue as well as a troupe of performers that included two celebrities famous for their own lavish wedding. A branch of the ruling Communist Party’s anti-graft watchdog fired Ma for waste and discipline violations, adding that while it had not found any abuse of public funds, it was investigating, the official Xinhua news agency reported. Since taking charge of the Communist Party late last year and the reins of state in March, President Xi Jinping has called corruption a threat to the party’s survival and vowed to go after powerful “tigers” as well as lowly “flies”. Xi has sought to address growing public anger at the illegal or unethical behaviour of party officials, espe-

TIANJIN: A Chinese couple pose for wedding photos in front of a merry-goround (roundabout) outside a shopping mall in Tianjin yesterday. Chinese couples traditionally pose for wedding photos months before their actual wedding day and will repeat the process until they are satisfied with the images. — AFP

cially those with flamboyant lifestyles which they could not possibly afford on low government salaries. Among the “tigers”, ousted senior politician Bo Xilai was jailed for life last month after he was found guilty of corruption, taking bribes and abuse of power. Ma said he only paid for the two days of festivities in his village that cost 200,000 yuan, and that he received a fraction of that back in gifts, the newspaper said. Wedding guests are traditionally expected to give newly-weds red

envelopes full of cash known as “hong bao”, which are often used to defray the costs of the wedding, but can also be used to illegally funnel cash or as a channel for bribes. Ma insisted he was well aware of Xi’s anti-graft campaign. “I’m a village official, I know all about the party’s rules and what you should not do, but the bride’s family insisted and I couldn’t stop them,” he told Xinhua. He described the bride’s family as wealthy business people from the eastern province of Jiangsu. — Reuters

Search is on for new Pakistan army chief ISLAMABAD: Five months on from a successful transition of power after general elections, Pakistan is poised to make a decision of arguably even greater importance-the appointment of a new army chief. The incumbent, General Ashfaq Kayani, on Sunday confirmed he will step down as scheduled on November 29, scotching rumours he was to keep a hand on the reins in some new role. Four lieutenant generals are seen as in the hunt to lead the 600,000-strong armywidely considered the most powerful job in Pakistan. Whoever is chosen will take over with Pakistan facing an array of daunting challenges both domestically and internationally-proposed talks with homegrown militants, vexed relations with India and the role Pakistan wants to play in promoting peace in

Afghanistan. Analysts said that the new man is likely to maintain Kayani’s pragmatic approach to relations with the United States and his attitude of not opposing civilian efforts to improve ties with old enemy India. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif-whose last appointment as army chief, general Pervez Musharraf, deposed him in 1999 — will choose the new chief from a shortlist prepared by Kayani, who was appointed in 2007 and given an extension in 2010. The highest-ranking contender is Lieutenant General Haroon Aslam, currently the chief of logistics staff. Aslam took part in army operations against the Taleban in the northwestern district of Swat in 2009 and served as chief of the paramilitary Rangers in central Punjab province. Behind Aslam in rank but seen

by some commentators as favourite for the job, particularly if Aslam is made chairman of the joint chiefs of staff committee, is Lieutenant General Rashad Mehmood, currently chief of general staff at the army’s General Headquarters. The other main runners are Lieutenant General Raheel Sharif, whose elder brother won Pakistan’s highest military award for valour in the 1971 war with India, and Lieutenant General Tariq Khan, who has taken part in successful counter-insurgency operations and has earned a reputation as an excellent field commander. The May general election marked a major landmark for Pakistani democracy-which has been punctuated by three military coups-as the first time an elected government completed its term and handed over power through the ballot box. — AFP





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Libya’s jihadists share ideals, not ties with Qaeda By Imed Lamloum

bu Anas Al-Libi, captured in a daring US raid, was once in Osama bin Laden’s inner circle, but appears to have had few ties to Libya’s new generation of jihadists. Islamists inspired by Al-Qaeda’s war on the West have flourished in chaotic post-Kadhafi Libya, but evince little interest in the core group founded by bin Laden in the 1990s, which has been decimated by arrests and US drone strikes in the decade-long War on Terror. But in a measure of the limited success of that campaign, young militants now wave the black banner of radical Islam in war zones from Mali to Syria, while Libi appears to have lived the quiet life of a retiree in Tripoli, with little if any involvement in his country’s growing jihad. His story traces the arc of Al-Qaeda’s decadeslong struggle and growth from a small group of embittered exiles to an ideology seized upon by militants locked in conflicts across the Muslim world. Like many Libyan jihadists, Abu Anas Al-Libi-whose real name is Nazih Abdul Hamed Al-Raghie-was hounded out of his native country during Muammar Gaddafi’s brutal crackdown on Islamists in the 1990s. The computer expert was welcomed with open arms by bin Laden’s fledgling group, then based in Sudan, and according to a US indictment helped plan Al-Qaeda’s first major attack-the bombing of embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, which killed more than 200 people. After more than a decade on the run, Libi and other former Al-Qaeda operatives returned to Libya after the outbreak of the 2011 uprising against Gaddafi. As veterans of conflicts in Afghanistan and elsewhere, they enjoyed a certain notoriety among the younger generation of Islamist rebels, and some established camps and recruited new fighters. A few still operate training camps for Libyans and foreigners alike who hope to join the war in Syria, a diplomat posted in the eastern city of Benghazi said on condition of anonymity. And yet many analysts believe Libya’s Islamist militias have taken on a life of their own, refusing to formally ally themselves with Al-Qaeda because they see themselves more powerful than the group. Ansar AlSharia, for example, which is believed to have launched the September 11, 2012 attack on the US mission in Benghazi, killing a US ambassador and three other Americans, has no apparent links to Al-Qaeda’s core in Pakistan and Afghanistan. “There are several groups that share a broad ideological affinity with Al-Qaeda insofar as they advocate a state based on Islamic law and nurture hostility against the West,” said Claudia Gazzini, a Libya analyst with the Brussels-based International Crisis Group. “There is also evidence that individuals who in the past had contacts with senior Al-Qaeda operatives are in Libya today. But none of this alone indicates that these individuals and groups are currently direct affiliates of the organisation.”


JIHADISTS, BUT NOT QAEDA Since the fall and slaying of Gaddafi in October 2011 Libya has been the scene of several bombings and other attacks on Western targets and Libyan security forces. “Certainly, there are Al-Qaeda sympathizers in Libya, as there are elsewhere, even in the United States, but there are no Al-Qaeda jihadists in Libya,” said Fraj Najem, a Tripoli-based analyst. “There is no concrete evidence of an Al-Qaeda presence in Libya.” As far as Libi is concerned, Najem insists he ceased all Al-Qaeda related activities after his return, an assertion backed by family members and others close to Libi, who insist he led a quiet life, rarely venturing out except to attend prayers at a nearby mosque. Amor Bushaala, an analyst based in Benghazi, widely seen as a haven for Islamists, points out that while eastern Libya has seen scores of attacks claimed by Islamists, none have been attributed to Al-Qaeda. Observers have however pointed to apparent links between Libyan groups and Al-Qaeda offshoots operating across North Africa, including Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) and the Signatories in Blood founded by former AQIM leader Mokhtar Belmokhtar. Libi is reportedly being held aboard a US naval ship in the Mediterranean, where he is being interrogated about Al-Qaeda’s future plans in Libya and elsewhere. And yet, two decades after joining bin Laden’s surprisingly resilient movement, he may have very little to say. — AFP

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Darfur conflict’s deadly gold rush By Ulf Laessing ith its scrubland, unpaved roads and mud brick huts, the Jebel Amer area in Darfur, western Sudan, can look like a poor and desolate place. Under the ground, though, lies something sought by people everywhere: gold. In the past year or so the precious metal has begun to alter the nature of the decade-old conflict in Darfur, transforming it from an ethnic and political fight to one that, at least in part, is over precious metal. Fighting between rival tribes over the Jebel Amer gold mine that stretches for some 10 km (six miles) beneath the sandy hills of North Darfur has killed more than 800 people and displaced some 150,000 others since January. Arab tribes, once heavily armed by the government to suppress insurgents, have turned their guns on each other to get their hands on the mines. Rebel groups that oppose the government also want the metal. The gold mine death toll is more than double the number of all people killed by fighting between the army, rebels and rival tribes in Darfur in 2012, according to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s quarterly reports to the Security Council. UN officials and diplomats told Reuters the government has been complicit in the violence by encouraging at least one militia group to seize control of mines, a charge the government denies. Until last year the Darfur conflict pitted the government and its Arab militias against three large rebel groups. The Jebel Amer attack changed that, dividing Arab tribes against each other. But international peace efforts are still focused on bringing the main rebel groups into a Qatarsponsored deal Khartoum signed with two splinter groups in 2011. At the last meeting to discuss the Qatar deal in September, Qatar’s deputy prime minister, Ahmed bin Abdullah Al-Mahmoud, expressed concern about the recent tribal violence, but stressed a key factor in bringing peace to Darfur would be to get the rebels to the negotiating table, according to Qatari state media.


LOST OIL The conflict in Darfur began as a struggle between African pastoralists and Arab cattle-owning nomads over access to land. It grew into what the US State Department described as genocide after the government began sponsoring militias to put down a rebel insurgency. In all, fighting in Darfur since 2003 has killed more than 200,000 people and forced some 2 million from their homes according to human rights groups and the United Nations. In 2009, the International Criminal Court charged Sudanese President Omar Hassan Al-Bashir with war crimes for his role in the Darfur violence, charges he rejects. The recent resurgence in violence is rooted in Sudan’s loss of a huge chunk of its territory in the south two years ago. When South Sudan seceded in 2011, the rump state of Sudan lost most of its oil production - worth some $7 billion in 2010 - sending the economy into a spin. Sudan’s GDP contracted by 10 percent last year, according to the World Bank. To replace the oil the government in Khartoum has encouraged people to dig for gold. Now half a million diggers roam Darfur and the north of the country with mine detectors and sledgehammers, according to the mining ministry. The gold rush helped boost output by 50 percent last year to around 50 tonnes, making Sudan Africa’s thirdlargest producer, equal with Mali after South Africa and Ghana, according to official data and expert estimates. Gold exports have become Sudan’s lifeline, providing the government with $2.2 billion (net) last year and making up more than 60 percent of all exports. Sudan’s central bank, desperate for anything to secure foreign currency, pays artisanal miners up to 20 percent more than the global market price, several gold trading sources told Reuters. The central bank denies this. At the same time, around a quarter of Sudan’s annual gold output is smuggled abroad, industry sources inside and outside Sudan said. If that figure is right, the government lost up to $700 million last year - money it badly needs.

“The government is so desperate for the gold that they are willing to stoke conflict to get artisanal mines under its control,” said Magdi El Gizouli, a fellow at the Rift Valley Institute, a think tank based in London and Nairobi. He said the mining ministry had handed out hundreds of exploration licences to firms but only 20 were actually producing gold. “So they need to control mines which produce like Jebel Amer.” The mining ministry said it wants to improve the performance of licence holders, many of which do not yet produce. QUEST FOR GOLD On a sunny morning in early January, dozens of Land Cruisers surrounded the town of El Sireaf near the Jebel Amer gold mine. Men readied themselves behind mounted machine guns and mortars and started firing. “I saw 30 cars. They came from all sides and fired randomly into houses,” said Fateh, a worker who hid in his house as the attack began. “They shot women, children, even cattle, anything they spotted,” he said, asking for his full name to be withheld as he fears the gunmen might come back. The attackers, members of the Arab Rizeigat tribe appeared to locals to have one goal: to seize control of the mines from the Bani Hussein, a rival Arab tribe. “They wanted the gold,” said al-Tijani Hamid, a Bani Hussein tribesman who lives in Britain but was visiting El Sireaf during the January attacks. “There were ... corpses in the streets everywhere. It was terrible,” said Hamid, who has now given up his UK teaching job at an agricultural college in Reading to help organize aid. A truce was reached in late January, but the two tribes fought again in February and in June. The Rizeigat have sent hundreds of fighters to consolidate control of the mine and to avenge cattle rustling by the Bani Hussein, residents said. Until the fighting began, the area was dominated by small artisanal miners. Over the past couple of years, gold diggers arrived from neighboring Chad, the Central African Republic and even far-flung West African countries such as Nigeria and Niger, Darfur residents said. “ There were even some Libyans, Syrians and Jordanians,” said Suleiman Dubaid, a Bani Hussein leader who said seven members of his family were killed during the fighting. “Some people made 6,000 (Sudanese) pounds ($800) a day.” The gold is smuggled out in bags or underwear, to middlemen on the other side of the Chad border. From there it goes to the capital N’Djamena where it is loaded onto commercial flights or stashed in the baggage of courier firms, Sudanese gold sources and Darfur residents say. The final destination is often Dubai, the Middle East’s main gold market. Some gold is also smuggled to Cameroon, where it is exported and shipped to gold markets in India and China, a Sudanese gold source said. In 2011, after the state lost access to oil, the Sudanese government clamped down on the smugglers. Nonetheless, gold revenues are expected to fall as low as $1.5 billion this year due to declining global prices. The weak market comes as output at Sudan’s biggest industrial mine, Ariab, in the Nubian desert, has fallen: to around 2 tons in 2011, the last reported figure. That may be one reason, say Western diplomats, tribal leaders and international peacekeepers working in Darfur, why government officials encouraged the Rizeigat tribe to break the Bani Hussein’s control of the Jebel Amer mine. “They wanted the Rizeigat to shake up things a bit so that at least some of the gold goes to the central bank,” said a Western diplomat. Khartoum has used the Rizeigat before: The tribe provided the core of the feared “Janjaweed” militias, armed and unleashed by the government in 2003 to put down the rebel insurgency, according to rights groups such as Human Rights Watch. The Rizeigat were also Khartoum’s allies during the 1983-2005 civil war with the south, sending fighters armed by the government. Mining minister Kamal Abdel-Latif visited the Jebel Amer mine late in December, a trip covered by state media. There he told the Bani Hussein that only 5 of the 15 tons the mine produced annually was going to the central bank,

said Tijani, who was present at the meeting. Abdel-Latif is close to Khartoum’s security establishment. His appointment in 2011 was widely seen by Western diplomats and local analysts as an attempt by Khartoum to get a better grip on the sprawling amateur mines. At the same time, the state-linked Sudanese Media Centre reported that the North Darfur government and top security command had met “to devise a meticulous plan to guarantee that all the gold produced (in Jebel Amer) will be directed to the Central Bank of Sudan.” A top Rizeigat tribal official with close government ties said officials had asked Rizeigat paramilitary forces to break up the hold of the Bani Hussein over the mine. “They encouraged some of our tribesmen serving in paramilitary forces to seize the mine.” Adam Sheikha, a Bani Hussein tribal leader and lawmaker for Bashir’s National Congress Party said during the January attack, many Rizeigat wore the uniform of Sudan’s border guards, a paramilitary force formed when Khartoum armed militias in the early stages of the conflict. “The weapons they used were issued by the army,” he said. Several witnesses confirmed they had seen attackers wearing border guard uniforms. Sudan’s mining ministry said it had nothing to do with the Jebel Amer clashes. Authorities also denied reporters access to the mine. “The ministry has nothing to do with the tribal violence,” a senior official read out to a reporter visiting the ministry on Khartoum’s Nile banks. He declined further comment. The Rizeigat had their own reasons to seize the mine, according to Western diplomats and tribal leaders. Many of them had been integrated into state forces such as the border guards or central reserve police, but Khartoum has slashed funding to those forces. Since the January attack, Rizeigat tribesmen have mined Jebel Amer on their own, residents said. Guards have sealed off roads and banned anyone from the Bani Hussein or even some government forces from approaching the site. They attacked a nearby army base in June, according to an internal report from the UNAMID peacekeepers seen by Reuters. REBELS Darfuri rebels want gold, too. Tribesmen from the Zaghawa, the backbone of the rebel Sudan Liberation army (SLA), until recently operated its own mine in Hashaba to the east of Jebel Amer. There is no data on how much rebels make from gold sales but locals and UNAMID staff say Hashaba’s output was much smaller than Jebel Amer. The potential spoils are huge. To the south of Jebel Amer, for instance, there is an area called “Shangil Tobaya”, which is Sudanese Arabic for “turn a brick and you find gold.” Rebels and Arab militias are vying for control for a strip of low-rise mountains. “People say there is gold up there but we cannot check it because the armed militias are there,” said Adam Saleh, a local farmer. Khartoum downplays the tribal violence and the changing nature of the conflict. “The security situation improves from day to day,” said Osman Kibr, governor of North Darfur. “We had some issues but we’ve fixed them,” he told diplomats who had come to El Fasher in June to discuss the recent surge in tribal violence. But security in Darfur has deteriorated. Aid groups report a sharp rise in hijackings and robberies by Arab militias since mid-2012. This has stopped the UN World Food Program delivering food to several areas, and delayed development projects backed by a Qatar-sponsored donor conference in April where pledges of $1 billion were made. Even some government officials now wonder if the Rizeigat are out of control. In the past, tribal leaders would call a meeting and try to end bloodshed by offering compensation for families of victims and pressing local leaders into making peace. Now “the traditional tribal reconciliation mechanism doesn’t work anymore,” said Tijani Seissi, head of the regional Darfur authority and a former rebel who made peace with Sudan under the Qatar deal. “We need to fight them.” — Reuters



‘Shura women’ fight against driving ban RIYADH: Three female members of Saudi Arabia’s Shura Consultative Council filed a recommendation yesterday that a ban on women driving in the ultra-conservative kingdom be lifted, one of them said. The move comes ahead of an October 26 initiative by Saudi activists to defy a longstanding driving ban on women in Saudi Arabia. Latifa Al-Shaalan said that she and two fellow council members, Haya Al-Mani and Muna Al-Mashit, filed a recommendation urging the kingdom’s top consultative body to “recognize the rights of women to drive a car in accordance with the principles of sharia (Islamic law) and traffic rules”. They backed their recommendation with results of studies on the various justifications for women to drive. “There is no law that bans women from driving. It is only a matter of tradition,” Shaalan said. Saudi women have “made many achievements... and have acquired leading positions in the government and the United Nations, yet they are still banned from driving. This creates a negative image (for the kingdom) abroad,” she said. In January, King Abdullah appointed 30 women members for the first time to the advisory body-also known as the Saudi Consultative Council-which advises the monarch on policy but cannot legislate. A petition signed in March

by 3,000 Saudis had urged the council to launch a debate on the driving ban in Saudi Arabia, the only country where women are not allowed behind the wheel of a vehicle. More recently, an online petition entitled “Oct 26th, driving for women” has gathered several thousand signatories. Activists say that some 20 women are planning to take part in the campaign in the kingdom’s Eastern Province. A similar campaign in June 2011 drew only a few women, some of whom were stopped by police and forced to sign a pledge not to take to the wheel again. The 2011 call, which spread through Facebook and Twitter, had been the largest mass action since November 1990, when 47 Saudi women were arrested and severely punished after demonstrating in cars. In addition to the driving ban, Saudi Arabia imposes other major restrictions on women, including a requirement to cover from head to toe when in public. Abdullah has been carefully treading towards change, introducing municipal elections for the first time in 2005. In 2011 he granted women the right to vote and run as candidates in the next local election, set for 2015, because, he said, “we refuse to marginalize women’s role in Saudi society”. — AFP

Turkey lifts ban on Islamic headscarves Continued from Page 1

GAZA: A Palestinian waves a national flag while riding a camel as another man rides a horse to celebrate Palestinian Folklore Day in Gaza City yesterday. The annual festival revives the historical dance, music and crafts of the Palestinian people. — AP

Minister criticizes Kuwait red tape, bloated... Continued from Page 1 His remarks echoed criticism by the International Monetary Fund, which said last week that despite its huge oil wealth, Kuwait needed to rein in public spending, especially on wages, and find new sources of income to protect its budget position. Sheikh Salem, a member of Kuwait’s ruling Al-Sabah family, said structural imbalances in the state budget, inefficiencies in the labor market and the limited role of the private sector were the most prominent challenges facing the OPEC member’s economy. These imbalances are partially or wholly linked to “the role played by the government in economic activity, which has resulted in the oversized growth of its administrative sector and the complication of procedures, thus hindering sustainable growth,” KUNA quoted him as saying. He acknowledged that Kuwait’s fiscal and current account surpluses were strong at present but added that they were fundamentally linked to the performance of the global oil market, which meant it was important to find a sustainable model for economic growth. Kuwait’s budget surplus fell to KD12.7 billion ($44.8 billion) equivalent to 24.7 percent of gross domestic product,

still one of the highest levels in the world - for the fiscal year that ended in March, he said. Its current account surplus stood at KD22.2 billion in 2012. The IMF has forecast Kuwait’s fiscal surplus will come in at 27.4 percent of GDP in 2013/14 after 33.4 percent in 2012/13, higher than the finance ministry’s estimates. But in view of recent sharp rises in the government’s current spending and relatively small non-oil revenues, state expenditure could exceed oil revenues by 2017/18, raising the risk from any sustained drop in oil prices, the IMF said. Analysts in a Reuters poll in September predicted the budget surplus is likely to shrink to 23.7 percent of GDP in 2013/14 and 18.5 percent in the following fiscal year. Like other wealthy Gulf Arab states, Kuwait provides a generous welfare system and does not collect income tax, but it has lagged peers such as the United Arab Emirates and Qatar in raising competitiveness and foreign investment. It has the most open political system in the Gulf Arab region but infighting and bureaucracy have slowed tens of billions of dollars worth of economic development plans that were originally announced in 2010. Parliament has pressured the cabinet into boosting spending on social welfare handouts. — Reuters

effect in the majority Muslim but constitutionally secular country. “A regulation that has hurt many young people and has caused great suffering to their parents, a dark period, is coming to an end,” Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan told a meeting of his AK Party, which has its roots in Islamist politics. The debate around the head scarf goes to the heart of tensions between religious and secular elites, a major fault line in Turkish public life. Erdogan’s critics see his AK Party as seeking to erode the secular foundations of the republic built on the ruins of an Ottoman theocracy by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk in 1923. His supporters, particularly in Turkey’s pious Anatolian heartlands, say Erdogan is simply redressing the balance and restoring freedom of religious expression to a Muslim majority. “There was a witch hunt for civil servants with a head scarf,” said Safiye Ozdemir, a high-school teacher in Ankara who for years had to remove her head scarf at work against her wishes, but had started to defy the ban in recent months. “Today it became clear that we’ve been right. So we are happy, and we are proud. It’s a decision that came in very late, but at least it came, thank God.” The lifting of the ban, based on a cabinet decree from 1925 when Ataturk introduced a series of clothing reforms meant to banish overt symbols of religious affiliation for civil servants, is part of a “democratization package” unveiled by Erdogan last week. The long-awaited package -

in large part aimed at bolstering the rights of Turkey’s Kurdish community - included changes to the electoral system, the broadening of language rights and permission for villages to use their original Kurdish names. An end to state primary school children reciting the oath of national allegiance at the start of each week, a deeply nationalistic vow, also took effect yesterday. But Erdogan’s opponents have found little to suggest he is curbing what they see as his puritanical intrusiveness into private life, from his advice to women on the number of children they should have to his views on tobacco and alcohol. They leapt on the dismissal yesterday of a television presenter - after she was criticized by AK Party deputy chairman Huseyin Celik for wearing a revealing evening dress - as evidence that the government’s tolerance went in only one direction. “These policies ... show not only the government’s attitudes to women but also its understanding of freedoms,” said Sezgin Tanrikulu, deputy head of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), which was founded by Ataturk. “There are countries which interfere in the outfits worn by television presenters, but in those countries we can’t talk about democracy,” he said in a statement. Celik dismissed such criticism, emphasizing that he had not specifically named the television channel or presenter involved. “As an individual, a TV viewer or a politician, it is my right and freedom of expression to express my opinion,” he said on his Twitter account. “To exploit my comments by saying it is intervention in lifestyles is malicious.” — Reuters

Saudi preacher jailed for raping, killing... Continued from Page 1 cane to inflict the injuries, human rights activists said earlier this year. Randa Al-Kaleeb, a social worker from the hospital where Lama was admitted, said the girl’s back was broken and that she had been raped “everywhere”. Reportedly,

Ghamdi had tortured and raped his daughter after he had doubted her virginity. Rights activists in the kingdom had been campaigning for harsher punishment of Ghamdi when reports emerged in January that the court would only give him a short jail term and order him to pay blood

money to the mother. In ultra-conservative Saudi Arabia, where rape and murder are among several crimes punishable by death, a father cannot be executed for murdering his children, nor can husbands be executed for murdering their wives. Such crimes carry a jail sentence between five to 12 years. — AFP



Kompany out of qualifiers

Size not a problem for Lotus

Linsanity hits Philippines

BRUSSELS: Belgium captain Vincent Kompany has been ruled out of the country’s final two World Cup qualifiers due to a groin injury sustained at the weekend. Belgium coach Marc Wilmots tweeted on Monday that the Manchester City defender would miss Friday’s Group A fixture in Croatia and the visit of Wales four days later. Kompany was substituted 34 minutes into City’s 3-1 Premier League win over Everton on Saturday. Wilmots later told a news conference he had sought to call up 18-year-old midfielder Adnan Januzaj as a replacement. Januzaj, who scored twice on his first league start for Manchester United in a 2-1 win at Sunderland on Saturday, was born in Brussels to Kosovar-Albanian parents and was on the books of Anderlecht before his move to the English champions. Wilmots said United had told the Belgian FA that Januzaj had not chosen any national side and would not be joining up with the Belgium squad. “But I think that I have given a clear signal to Januzaj. It’s now up to him,” Wilmots said. “I wanted to integrate him into the group, without forcing him. I respect his choice and plan to talk to him and his entourage.” —Reuters

SUZUKA: Nico Hulkenberg’s chances of replacing Kimi Raikkonen at Lotus were boosted yesterday after the Formula One team said weight would not be a major factor in their choice of driver. The issue has become a hot topic in the sport, with the introduction of a new and heavier V6 turbo power unit and energy recovery systems next year giving more of an advantage to the lighter drivers. Germany’s Hulkenberg is one of the tallest and, at 78 kilos, heaviest drivers. The ideal weight next season is likely to be between 60 and 65 kg. “We’re more interested in the talent and potential of a driver rather than the difference of a few kilos,” said Lotus team principal Eric Boullier in a team preview of Sunday’s Japanese Grand Prix. “We have confidence in our development team to be able to produce a car for the 2014 regulations which should be competitive in the hands of any driver we consider for next year.” Boullier, who needs to replace Raikkonen after the Finn signed to return to Ferrari next season, has made no secret of his interest in Sauber’s Hulkenberg. The German finished fourth in South Korea last weekend and had also been considered for the Ferrari seat. Sauber have said they want to bring 18-year-old Russian Sergey Sirotkin into the sport, if he can get a superlicence, as part of a deal with new Russian backers and Hulkenberg is expected to leave. —Reuters

MALAYSIA: Unheralded Joao Sousa completed a fairytale run at the Malaysian Open yesterday when he beat France’s Julien Benneteau 2-6 7-5 6-4 in the final to become the first Portuguese to win an ATP Tour title. The 24-year-old, ranked 77th in the world, fell flat on his back in delight after claiming victory on the indoor hard court when Benneteau missed with a backhand down the line on his second match point. Sousa beat top seed and world number four David Ferrer in the last eight and then fourth seed Juergen Melzer of Austria in the semi-finals to reach his first final at the $875,500-event in Kuala Lumpur. Dressed in black with his cap back to front, the young Portuguese right-hander struggled with his serve in the opening set as the experienced Benneteau broke twice to wrap it up 6-2. The duo were on serve in the second before Sousa was forced to save a match point at 5-4 down before holding and then snatching the crucial break to take the set 7-5 and force a decider. The young Portuguese broke again in Benneteau’s opening service game of the third set and he held firm, saving four break points to close out the set 6-4 and claim the breakthrough win. The loss was tough on fifth seed Benneteau who was searching for his first ATP Tour title in his ninth final.—Reuters

F1 teams relaxed about Bahrain tests SEOUL: Formula One teams say they have no qualms about schedulingcrucial preseason tests in Bahrain next February after the restive Gulf kingdom’s grand prix went ahead without incident this year. The 2011 race had to be cancelled, due to civil unrest and the crushing of an anti-government uprising that cost at least 35 lives, and some rights activists have since urged teams and sponsors to stay away. Teams have argued in their defence that Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone draws up the calendar and they are contractually obliged to race wherever he decides. However, they do have a choice when it comes to testing venues and there were ready-made alternatives to Bahrain in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh, whose team is half-owned by Bahrain’s Mumtalakat sovereign wealth fund, said attitudes had evolved since the height of the unrest. “I think people are relaxed about going there based on their experience of this year,” he told Reuters. Bahrain circuit authorities said last weekend, during the Korean Grand Prix, that the Sakhir track would host pre-season tests from Feb. 1922 and Feb. 27-March 2 next year. Next year will be the 10th anniversary of the first race in Bahrain and organisers are planning a floodlit day-to-night event like the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The 2012 race was seen as a public relations own-goal for Bahrain’s rulers, coming against the backdrop of security forces firing teargas in streets and villages while protesters hurled rocks and petrol bombs in images broadcast around the world. This year’s grand prix in April passed

largely without incident, despite opposition rallies and regular skirmishes out of sight of most Formula One visitors. The state news agency BNA reported on Monday that nine Bahrainis had been jailed for life for forming a militant group, manufacturing explosives and plotting attacks aimed at destabilising the kingdom. Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn said he was not aware of any contingency plan for the tests should unrest flare up again. “Obviously we hope things are progressing there as well as they can. Quite frankly, it’s not been a major topic, it’s not been discussed, so hopefully we can have a quiet time there,” he told reporters. “There have been assurances about the conditions there. It was part of the discussion that has gone on,” he added. Teams and engine makers say they need to test in the Middle East to guarantee the hot conditions they will not find in Europe at that time of year. With a radically new V6 turbocharged engine being introduced, the manufacturers cannot afford to lose any of the limited testing time available to the weather. “From the purely technical perspective, Bahrain is a more representative circuit,” Brawn added. “We can test there, we prefer to test there. It’s the best, most suitable track at that time of the year.” Sauber team principal Monisha Kaltenborn said the decision had been led by the engine makers - Mercedes, Renault and Ferrari - and smaller teams like her Swiss-based outfit had to fall in line. “If the tests are mainly meant for the engine, to have the right conditions to test that engine, then you don’t have a choice,” she said. —Reuters

YEONGAM: Red Bull driver Sebastian Vettel of Germany drives during the Formula One Korean Grand Prix in this file photo. —AFP

Hamilton hails Vettel as a ‘great champion’ SEOUL: Lewis Hamilton hailed Formula One rival Sebastian Vettel as a great champion yesterday, only days after suggesting the German’s dominance was sending fans to sleep. The Mercedes driver told his 1.7 million followers on Twitter that he felt a need to clarify his thoughts about Red Bull’s runaway championship leader and winner of the last four races. “Seb is great champion!!,” he declared on his feed (@LewisHamilton). “Not only that, he is a great human being who is funny and humble. Deserves all the success he is having. “I admire his dedication & ability to consistently perform without mistakes. This is the mark of a true champion,” added the Briton, who won the 2008 title with McLaren before Vettel had won the first of his three to date. Vettel, who does not use Twitter, has a 77-point lead over Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso

in the championship with five races remaining and can clinch his fourth successive title in Japan this weekend. “Regardless of what you & I may think about his car, at the end of the day he’s doing the perfect job,” continued Hamilton, whose earlier comments triggered a rash of newspaper headlines. “I’m just grateful I get to drive in an era with so many great drivers like him.” The Briton had told reporters after finishing fifth in Sunday’s Korean Grand Prix won by Vettel that the 26-year-old’s dominance would have been a turnoff for some fans. “Personally, I feel for the fans because I remember the period of time when Michael Schumacher was winning,” he had said. “I remember waking up in the morning to watch the start of the race and then going to sleep, and then waking up when it ended because I already knew what would happen. I am pretty sure a lot of people were doing that today.”—Reuters

LOS ANGELES: Mike Richards No. 10 of the Los Angeles Kings skates through the crease area between goaltender Henrik Lundqvist No. 30 and defenseman Anton Stralman No. 6 of the New York Rangers in the second period during their NHL game at Staples Center. —AFP

Rangers halt Kings march LOS ANGELES: Henrik Lundqvist knows how Jonathan Quick felt after giving up an embarrassing, inexcusable goal. Lundqvist and the New York Rangers didn’t let empathy get in the way of their excitement about their first victory of the season. Brad Richards scored two goals, Ryan McDonagh got credit for a short handed goal on a comical mistake by Quick, and the Rangers beat the Los Angeles Kings 3-1 on Monday night for their first win under new coach Alain Vigneault. Quick stopped 25 shots in the Kings’ home opener, but the star goalie also misplayed McDonagh’s harmless cleared puck from deep in the New York end early in the third period, knocking it into his own net. “I feel for him,” said Lundqvist, who made 28 saves. “It happens sometimes, but we’ll take it.” Quick’s first home game since his 10-year, $58 million contract extension kicked in featured maybe the most regrettable goal allowed by the Kings’ Conn Smythe Trophy winner. After Brian Boyle won a faceoff to Lundqvist’s left, McDonagh quickly cleared the puck off the far boards. Quick skated to his left to play it, but his stick slipped out of his hands as he knelt, and he reached for it while the puck glanced off his right pad and ricocheted straight into his net. “I didn’t watch it go down (the ice),” McDonagh said. “I didn’t know what happened at all. Still trying to get the full story. I was just kind of looking over at our bench, and guys started throwing their sticks up in the air.” The Staples Center crowd howled in disbelief, and Quick hung his head. He didn’t stay down for long - and when the Los Angeles crowd gave him a Bronx cheer when he stopped the Rangers’ next dump-in shot, he waved his glove at the fans. “You play 60 minutes and you try to stop the puck for your teammates, that’s the thought process,” Quick said. “Everyone gives up that goal, and it’s part of the game.” Rick Nash assisted on both of Richards’ goals for the Rangers (1-1), who are opening the season on a nine-game road trip. New York had three days off after losing the season opener at Phoenix. With Madison Square Garden getting extensive renovations, New York is on the road until Oct. 28, facing all three California clubs this

week. Vigneault is using the time away as a test for the Rangers. “I really liked the way we responded after they scored,” Vigneault said. “We came right back at them and we kept pushing the pace. Obviously, we got a little bit lucky on the third goal, but part of this game. You need a little bit of luck, and we got it there.” Jake Muzzin scored for the Kings (1-2), who have scored just six goals this season after splitting the first two games in the upper Midwest. The sellout crowd didn’t see much excitement from the Kings, who won their first Stanley Cup title and six playoff rounds in the past two seasons. Los Angeles reached the Western Conference finals last June before losing to eventual champion Chicago, raising expectations for this winter in a hockey town not familiar with consistent success. “Our five-on-five play needs to improve,” right wing Justin Williams said. “It’s non-existent right now. Certainly we need to get dirty. We need to become whole, put our work before skill, and get dirty and greasy, bang some in and rebound.” Richards flirted with the Kings as a free agent two seasons ago before signing a nine-year,

$58.5 million deal with the Rangers, but he stumbled to his worst pro season last season with just 11 goals in 46 games. New York considered buying out Richards’ contract, but brought him back this fall. Richards scored the game’s first goal in the first period after a scramble created by a turnover from Kings defenseman Drew Doughty. The Kings struggled to keep consistent possession, and Richards scored easily on a break with Nash after another turnover by Muzzin midway through the second period. Just 1:25 later, Los Angeles answered when Mike Richards got the puck to Muzzin in the slot for a nasty wrist shot. New York’s Taylor Pyatt missed most of the first period after taking a puck to the face. Rangers captain Ryan Callahan, making his season debut after shoulder surgery, then went to the dressing room early in the second period after cutting his mouth in an openice collision with Anze Kopitar. Callahan skated up to check Kopitar with a shoulder to the Slovenian center’s chest, but dropped flat to the ice when Kopitar’s stick caught him in the face after the hit. He eventually returned to the lineup. —AP

NHL results/standings Edmonton 5, New Jersey 4 (SO); NY Rangers 3, Los Angeles 1.

San Jose Vancouver Anaheim Calgary Phoenix Los Angeles Edmonton St. Louis Colorado Winnipeg Chicago Dallas Minnesota Nashville

Western Conference Pacific Division W L OTL GF GA 2 0 0 8 2 2 1 0 12 10 2 1 0 8 11 1 0 2 12 13 1 1 0 5 5 1 2 0 7 10 1 2 0 11 15 Central Division 2 0 0 11 2 2 0 0 9 2 2 1 0 12 10 1 0 1 8 7 1 1 0 4 5 0 0 2 5 7 0 2 0 3 7

PTS 4 4 4 4 2 2 2 4 4 4 3 2 2 0

Eastern Conference Atlantic Division Toronto 3 0 0 12 8 6 Boston 2 0 0 7 2 4 Detroit 2 1 0 6 7 4 Ottawa 1 0 1 5 5 3 Montreal 1 1 0 7 5 2 Florida 1 1 0 4 9 2 Tampa Bay 1 1 0 4 5 2 Buffalo 0 3 0 2 7 0 Metropolitan Division Pittsburgh 2 0 0 7 1 4 Carolina 1 0 1 4 4 3 NY Islanders 1 0 1 6 6 3 NY Rangers 1 1 0 4 5 2 Columbus 1 1 0 6 6 2 Washington 1 2 0 10 12 2 New Jersey 0 1 2 7 12 2 Philadelphia 0 3 0 3 9 0 Note: Overtime losses (OTL) are worth one point in the standings and are not included in the loss column (L).

Olympic flame under fire after failures MOSCOW: Russian authorities on Tuesday were pressed for an explanation after Olympic torches produced by a missile maker and used in the relay for the Sochi Winter Games went out four times. The flame was extinguished twice on Monday-the first day of the relay-and twice yesterday, according to media reports and witnesses. One of the relay participants, finswimmer world record holder Shavarsh Karapetyan, whose torch went out Monday and was reportedly relit by a secret service officer, was even given the opportunity to run in the

relay for a second time, according to RIANovosti. “The torch went out twice,” wrote Moscow photographer Yury Feklistov Tuesday, who posted pictures on his Facebook of one of the incidents. “They had to switch the torch.” “We have people responsible for this,” Russia’s sports minister Vitaly Mutko told ItarTASS when asked to comment about the problem. “I think that experts will sort it out.” The pro-Vladimir Putin campaign coalition All-Russian People’s Front however urged investigators to take matters in their hands and find out if budget money from the

total sum of 207 million rubles spent on the torches ($6.5 million/4.8 million euros) had been misspent. “Any normal person has a few questions: why were there 16,000 torches made? How much does each one cost? Is the price adequate? Finally, why don’t they work?” a group member and pro-Kremlin deputy Mikhail Starshinov asked. A spokesman for KRASMASH, a manufacturer in the Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk that produced the torches confirmed that 16,000 torches were made. “According to the agreement with the

(Sochi) Organising Committee we don’t have the right to give out any information about the torches besides the confirmation that we made them,” he told AFP. The factory is known as the maker of ballistic missiles for Russian submarines as well as parts for the Proton rocket used in the country’s space programme. There was no tender process for the torch-making contract and it’s not clear why the factory was picked for the job. Some of the torches made for the relay have already been put up for sale on various Russian websites. One seller in the Siberian city of Chita,

where the relay is set to pass through, offered a torch on the website Molotok.Ru, the Russian version of Ebay. So far only one bidder has made an offer of 40,000 rubles (about $1,200/880,000 euros). The nearly metre-long torch is made of aluminium and weighs 1.8 kilogrammes, with the weight also having caused some complaints. “The construction of the torch ensures that the flame burns reliably in difficult conditions, such as strong winds, heavy frosts, or any surprises that a Russian winter can throw up,” the Sochi Organising Committee website says.—AFP



New US PGA Tour opener waiting on the big names SAN MARTIN: The US PGA Tour season gets underway this week at the Open, the first time the tour has gone to a wraparound season. And while the field might not look that strong on paper, odds are that will change. The tournament has three players from the Presidents Cup (Hideki Matsuyama, Angel Cabrera and Marc Leishman - along with assistant captain Davis Love III). It has two from the top 50 in the world (Matsuyama at No. 30 and defending champion Jonas Blixt at No. 34), and one player who was at the Tour Championship (Billy Horschel). How might that change? A year ago, eight US PGA Tour members took part in an exhibition in Turkey called the World Golf Finals, held the same week as the Open. In exchange for a release from the tour, they agreed to play the Open at least once over the next three years. Those players were Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Lee Westwood, Justin Rose, Hunter Mahan, Charl Schwartzel, Webb Simpson and Matt Kuchar. Open president Duke Butler recalls a similar situation nearly 30 years ago. The tour granted releases to four players to play the Australian Skins Game in 1985 when it was held the same week as the Houston Open. The players agreed to play Houston at least once over the next few years. Those players could be called headliners — Jack Nicklaus, Tom Watson, Seve Ballesteros and Greg Norman. The next year, the Houston Open included Nicklaus in his first start since winning the Masters for his sixth green jacket, one of the most popular wins in golf. DUF & VIJAY: For all the attention on Phil Mickelson and his money games to get young players prepared for big moments, Jason Dufner had his own tutor when he was just starting out on the U.S. PGA Tour. He went about it quietly, and it was a learning experience. Dufner secured his tour card for the first time in 2003 through the Nationwide Tour money list. He was at the TPC Sawgrass preparing for his rookie season when he saw Vijay Singh on the back of the practice range. “I just went up to him. I said, ‘Hey, my name is Jason Dufner, I’m going to be playing the tour next year, and if I could play some practice rounds with you, that would be great. And if not, I understand,’” Dufner said last week at the Presidents Cup. “I was there for four or five days, pretty much practicing the same schedule he was. So maybe he took notice and respected that I was working and trying to get better.” They played plenty of practice rounds in 2004, and it turned into a banner year for the

Fijian. Singh won nine times and $10.9 million. “Every event that he won, except for the PGA, I played a practice round with him that year,” Dufner said. “So I got a lot of valuable experience. A little lighter on the wallet from all of that - I took my lumps. But I’d like to think that some of the things he shared with me and some of the knowledge he gave me helped me to where I am now.” Dufner didn’t fare so well as a rookie, returning to the minor leagues for two years before he went back to the tour for good. Now he is a three-time winner, a major champion and has a 6-2 record in the Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup. Dufner recalls beating Singh out of some money just one time during that 2004 season. He shot a 63 at the old 84 Lumber Classic. Singh shot 64. “I had nine birdies, no bogeys. He had eight birdies, no bogeys,” Dufner said. “He was playing pretty good on Tuesdays that year, too.” PRESIDENT CUP FIXES: Nick Price wants to see the Presidents Cup follow the Ryder Cup format by playing only 28 matches instead of 34, which would allow teams to disguise weaknesses and at least increase the odds of the matches being close going into singles. US PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem is on the side of more playing opportunities - no one sits the opening two sessions. Just because the International team keeps getting smoked is not an indication that there are too many matches. The current format of 34 matches was introduced in 2003 in South Africa. The Internationals had a three-point lead going into Sunday. Thirteen of the 22 team matches reached the 17th hole. The Presidents Cup ended in a tie. So maybe it’s not the format. Here’s one suggestion for a compromise. Have six matches on Thursday and Friday (fourballs and foursomes). Have one session of six matches on Saturday with three matches for each format. The captains will have to decide which three teams play foursomes and which three play fourballs. That’s 18 matches going into singles, for a total of 30 points. “Unless it’s broken, don’t really mess with it,” Finchem says. That doesn’t mean it can’t be changed to make it better. HALL OF FAME: The World Golf Hall of Fame is taking a year off from inducting anyone to review its selection process. One of the longtime sticking points of the Hall of Fame is inducting players still in the prime of their careers. Ernie Els and Phil Mickelson each won major championships after they were inducted. Vijay Singh won the FedEx Cup two years after his induction.—AP

Bangladesh plan to spin NZ CHITTAGONG: Bangladesh has loaded up with spinners to try and beat New Zealand in the opening match of a two-test cricket series on a refurbished pitch at Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium. Because the pitch is expected to be low and slow, Bangladesh has accommodated three specialist spinners and a part-timer in its 14-man squad for the first Test beginning today. Captain Mushfiqur Rahim is confident spinners will find some extra advantage from the untested pitch, as the last game played here was in December 2011. It means the prospects are brighter for Shakib Al Hasan, Sohag Gazi and Abdur Razzak, who has been recalled after two years out, while part-time spinner Mahmudullah could also play a leading role in trying to set up Bangladesh’s first win over the Black Caps. “We want to ensure a good team combination, but we will definitely put emphasis on spinners,” Rahim said on Tuesday. “I think spinners will make some difference.” Rahim said “our challenge is to do better first than (beating) New Zealand” as they were eager to up their ranking from 10th, the bottom of the test rankings, one below Zimbabwe. New Zealand stands eighth. Bangladesh slipped to the bottom after it lost eight of its 11 matches, with just one win in the past three years.

New Zealand has suffered 10 defeats in its past 16 tests, and its lone win in the period came against Sri Lanka in Colombo in November 2012. “We want to play session by session, we need to play consistent cricket,” Rahim said. Both teams practiced yesterday under sunny skies after days of rain and gloomy weather. By late afternoon, however, the rain returned and the pitch was covered. New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum said it was important for them to start the series well. Mentioning their 4-0 loss to Bangladesh in a 2010 one-day series, he said, “We still know the danger that the Bangladesh team poses, and we have got to make sure we start this series well and make sure that we have a successful campaign. “Obviously, the last time it was a pretty tough tour for us. It was not as good as it should have been. We were caught on the hop by a very good Bangladesh team in their own conditions. We are trying to mitigate that through our preparation.” McCullum said the pitch looks dry and they could play their second spinner, meaning legspinner Ish Sodhi could make his test debut. “He is an exceptional talent. He is still very raw as a player ... but I think he has got some very good skills,” he said.—AP

Photo of the day

Jason Paul performing at the Malacca Straits Mosque in Malacca, Malaysia.—

Dodgers beat Braves LOS ANGELES: As the celebration raged around them, Sandy Koufax sought out Clayton Kershaw in the hazy mist of the clubhouse for a hug. Koufax, whose blazing fastball dominated baseball in the mid-1960s, removed the protective goggles from his eyes and rested his arms on Kershaw’s broad shoulders. From the franchise’s old left-handed ace to its current young southpaw, a smiling Koufax looked Kershaw in the eyes and bestowed his congratulations. The Dodgers had advanced to their 10th National League championship series with a 4-3 victory over the Atlanta Braves on Monday night. “To get a hug and get a ‘good job’ from a guy like that, from a guy that’s been there, from a guy that’s done this before and was the best at it for a long time is pretty special,” Kershaw said. “He genuinely cares about not only this team but kind of our well-being. He cares about us. That’s awesome.” The NL West champions open the next round Friday against St. Louis or Pittsburgh. The Cardinals host the wild-card Pirates in a winner-take-all Game 5 today. “We’ve moved one step closer,” said Don Mattingly, managing in the playoffs for the first time. Juan Uribe hit a go-ahead, two-run homer in the eighth inning after Kershaw started on short rest for the Dodgers, who reached the NLCS for the first time since 2009. “It was a special night to get to do it here in L.A.,” said Kershaw, his hair slick from the spray of beer and champagne. “We haven’t won anything yet, but it definitely feels good to get to celebrate. You never want to pass those moments up.” Carl Crawford homered his first two times up and the Dodgers won the best-of-five playoff 3-1. “This does not get old. I love the champagne. I love the burning sensation in my eyes,” center fielder Skip Schumaker said. “A lot of these guys have never experienced the moving on to the next round and I’m happy for them.” Yasiel Puig doubled down the right-field line leading off the eighth against losing pitcher David Carpenter. The rookie charged into second base and pumped his right fist in the air. Fans were on their feet chanting “Let’s go Dodgers!” when Uribe fouled off two bunt attempts. Then he sent a hanging 2-2 breaking ball into the Dodgers’ bullpen in left field to put them in front for the second time. Uribe knew it was gone as soon as he connected. He dropped his bat and threw both arms in the air at home plate. “This moment today I’ll never forget,” he said. “I think a lot of people feel like that.” Meanwhile, it was the latest October flop for Atlanta, which hasn’t won a postseason series since 2001. During that stretch, the Braves have lost seven straight playoff series and the 2012 NL wild-card game. “To end the way it did tonight, it’s going to hurt. It’s going to be a long way back,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “But tip your hat to the

LOS ANGELES: Kenley Jansen No. 74 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches in the ninth inning against the Atlanta Braves in Game Four of the National League Division Series. —AFP Dodgers and congratulate Donnie and his staff. The er Craig Kimbrel. “You don’t want it to ever end the way we ended today. But we had the right guy out sad thing is there are no more games, you know?” Brian Wilson pitched a scoreless eighth to get there. Carp has been good for us,” Gonzalez said. the victory. Kenley Jansen struck out all three bat- “There is nothing to be ashamed of.” The Dodgers gambled in bringing back Kershaw ters in the ninth for a save, fanning Justin Upton to end it. That set off a raucous celebration on the on three days’ rest for the first time in his career. But field by the Dodgers, who rushed toward the with a chance to close out the series, they opted mound in a mob. They tore jerseys off each other in for their ace over scheduled starter Ricky Nolasco. unbridled excitement and doused Uribe with a The move paid off when the 2011 Cy Young Award bright-colored sports drink. “This team has a lot of winner tossed six solid innings before turning it fun. We don’t think about being the team to beat over to the bullpen. “This is the postseason,” Kershaw said. “You just and all that stuff. We just go out there and play and go. It’s a one-month sprint and I’m looking forward try to have fun,” Crawford said. Jansen and catcher A.J. Ellis leaped into each to the next couple games.” Kershaw wasted a 2-0 lead, giving up two other’s arms, and a burst of fireworks lit the sky in center field as blue and silver streamers cascaded unearned runs and three hits. He struck out six and walked one on 91 pitches. from an upper level of the stadium. With one out in the seventh, Elliot Johnson The Dodgers lined up exchanging hugs in the infield, and co-owners Mark Walter and Magic tripled into the right-field corner, sending Puig slidJohnson grinned watching the revelry among the ing into the dirt chasing the ball as it caromed off the wall. Constanza, batting for starting pitcher team they purchased last year. Kershaw, Puig, Wilson and other players jogged Freddy Garcia, singled into center to put the NL around the warning track exchanging high-fives East champions ahead for the first time. Garcia allowed two runs and eight hits in six and hand slaps with delirious fans. “They were loud,” Kershaw said. “They want it innings. He struck out six and walked two. The just as much as we do.” The Dodgers were criticized Braves tied it 2-all in the fourth. Crawford’s second for jumping into the ballpark pool in Arizona when homer of the game came in the third, landing they clinched the NL West crown last month. This deep in the lower right-field seats for a 2-0 lead. Crawford led off the first with a towering home time, they got to party at home. The Braves took a 3-2 lead in the seventh on run to the right-field pavilion, smiling broadly as pinch-hitter Jose Constanza’s RBI single off reliever the Dodgers took a 1-0 lead. “The smile on his face Ronald Belisario. Needing a win to avoid elimina- when he hit that homer is priceless,” Mattingly tion, Gonzalez never got the ball to lights-out clos- said. —AP

Rays stave off elimination

CHITTAGONG: Bangladesh cricketer captain Rubel Hossain delivers a ball during a training session at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium. —AFP

ST. PETERSBURG: Evan Longoria savored another win-or-go-home victory for the Tampa Bay Rays. “I think we all understand the stakes. We all understand that we have our backs to the wall. And it seems like those moments have been fueling us,” the three-time All-Star said Monday night after Jose Lobaton’s two-out, ninth-inning homer gave the Rays a 5-4 victory over the Boston Red Sox and renewed hope in the AL division series. “These are the game that we’ve really played well in. Although you’d like to be on the other side, maybe we need that now.” Tampa Bay won when facing elimination for the fourth time in nine days, trimming Boston’s lead to 2-1 in the best-of-five matchup. Game 4 is Tuesday night at Tropicana Field, with Jake Peavy starting for the Red Sox against Jeremy Hellickson. “They have a great team. They never quit. We’ve seen that ... everyone knows that. We’ve just got to be one run better than them (Tuesday),” Boston’s Dustin Pedroia said. “We’ll be all right. We’ll be fine.” As he’s done so often in his career, Longoria provided the spark that turned a potentially bleak night into a special moment in Rays history. The only player who’s appeared in every postseason game Tampa Bay has ever played homered off Clay Buchholz in the fifth inning. The three-run shot erased a 3-0 deficit and boosted sagging hopes. We needed that badly, there’s no denying,” manager Joe Maddon said. “After we saw that ... it’s kind of like the energy came back,” Lobaton added.

“Everybody was kind of like, we’ve got a chance now.” Lobaton’s solo homer off Koji Uehara landed into the giant fish tank beyond the center-field wall. The Red Sox closer didn’t allow a home run in his last 37 regular-season appearances. “Koji has been tough, man. He’s been a really bright spot on that ballclub. To be able to come through in that moment, those are the kind of things that we’re going to need to propel us forward,” Longoria said. Back home after two weeks on the road, the Rays gave a sellout crowd of 33,675 little to cheer until Longoria homered on his 28th birthday. Pinch-hitter Delmon Young, who has a penchant for driving home key runs in October, put the Rays ahead 4-3 with an RBI grounder in the eighth. The Red Sox made it 4-all in the ninth on Pedroia’s RBI grounder after closer Fernando Rodney issued a leadoff walk to Will Middlebrooks. Rodney got the win when Lobaton golfed a low pitch to right-center, ending the 4-hour, 19-minute game. The ball deflected off a fan trying to catch the souvenir and wound up in the 10,000-gallon tank where cownose rays swim around. Rays manager Joe Maddon said he was studying his lineup when he heard the crack of the bat. “Look up and the ball is going towards the tank, which nobody hits home runs there. Nobody does. How about that? It’s incredible,” he said. The last time Uehara gave up a homer was June 30 to Toronto slugger Jose Bautista.—AP

ST PETERSBURG: Shane Victorino No. 18 of the Boston Red Sox hits a sacrifice bunt in the ninth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays during Game Three of the American League Division Series. —AFP



Fine print in Vikings deal leaves little to chance ST. PAUL: Decode the legalese and the 222-page lease agreement binding the Minnesota Vikings to 30 years or more in their soon-to-be-built stadium shows in great detail who calls the shots, who gets to cash in and who can use the place when the football team isn’t. The finer points of the agreement, approved Thursday by the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority, were overshadowed last week by attention to the average $2,500 seat license fee that season ticketholders must pay. Up close, though, the lease leaves little to chance. THE NAME GAME In professional sports, stadium names are a bigbuck enterprise. Department store retailer Target paid many millions for the namesakes of the Twins’ and Timberwolves’ homes. Xcel Energy Inc. has its name atop the Wild’s hockey arena. The Vikings will have the exclusive right to sell and profit from a pair of naming-rights deals for the new stadium and adjacent fan plaza. The contract disallows any name connected to a tobacco company, firearms firm or political entity, and gives the authority some veto power. Twin Cities-based corporations are considered pre-approved.

THE WINDFALL CLAUSE The stadium is expected to handsomely increase the value of the franchise, so the lease guards against any attempt by owners Mark and Zygi Wilf to cash out quick. If they do unload a majority stake in the team, they’ll have to split the profits with the public. The state of Minnesota and city of Minneapolis are in line for a windfall payment that diminishes over time. If a sale happened before May 2022, the owners would forfeit a quarter of their “premium,” defined as the increment above what they paid for the club. The windfall amount drops some over the next decade. If the Wilfs keep the team beyond May 14, 2032, they keep all profits from a sale after that. RENT While the Vikings score from advertising and concessions revenue on game days, they are on the hook for annual rent. It starts at $8.5 million the year the stadium opens - 2016 is the goal - and climbs 3 percent a year until reaching $20 million in Year 30. Additionally, the team must put $1.5 million into a capital improvement account in Year One; that grad-

ually rises to $3.5 million by the 30th year. AFFORDABLE TICKETS The Vikings pledged to put 3,250 “affordable” tickets out on the market for each game, out of 65,000. What’s affordable? That depends on how much other seats cost. In short, affordable tickets can be no more than 80 percent of the average cost in the lowest-priced section, and obstructed view or standing room only tickets can’t be factored in. SUPER BOWL The Vikings must help convince other NFL owners to bring the Super Bowl to Minnesota “as soon as reasonably practical” - the earliest it would happen is 2018. Minneapolis last hosted it in 1992. That’s far from the only Super Bowl reference in the pact. If the Vikings were to win a championship, they’re assured of having the “absolute right” to clear the stadium’s schedule to accommodate the NFL’s traditional weeknight kickoff of the following season, which features the reigning champion. HOME AWAY FROM HOME This season, one of the Vikings’ eight “home”

games was in London. The lease gives them to right to play up to six international “home” games over the next 30 years without penalty or having to make up for lost revenue. The team will still be on the hook for its full annual rent. The Vikings can be the visiting team for as many international games as the NFL schedules. TOUR TALK The authority will operate and keep profits from year-round stadium tour tickets. “Special access tours” will include peeks inside the locker rooms and training areas. If the Vikings suspend access to those areas, the authority has recourse, too: It no longer has to end the tours in the team store. STADIUM NO-NOs For the 350-plus days the Vikings aren’t playing, the stadium can be used for a range of events - from rock concerts to fantasy football days to amateur sports competitions to political conventions. But not everything goes: There’ll be no events that sell guns, adults-only entertainment and periodicals, pawnstyle offerings or head shop paraphernalia. — AP

Jets soar over Falcons ATLANTA: Geno Smith put the New York Jets in position to win at the end of the game, leaving Atlanta to bemoan its missed opportunity at the end of the first half. Smith threw for three touchdowns and completed four straight passes to set up Nick Folk’s gamewinning field goal on the final play, giving the Jets a 30-28 victory over the stunned Falcons on Monday night. The Jets (3-2) hoped it was a defining game for their team and rookie quarterback. “This is a champi-

bye week simply trying to avoid panic. The final margin left Falcons coach Mike Smith explaining his decision to go for the touchdown instead of a field goal when the Jets’ defense stopped Atlanta on two plays from the New York 1 to end the first half. “We felt like we needed to score a touchdown in that situation,” Smith said. “We felt like we have an opportunity to do it, and we didn’t get it done. In hindsight, it is probably not the way we wanted it to work out, but that is the decision we made.” Folk’s decisive 43-yard field goal capped an eight-play, 55-yard drive. Here are five things to know from the Jets’ victory: SMITH AVOIDS MISTAKES: After the Falcons went ahead on the first play after the two-minute warning, Geno Smith calmly completed four straight passes and added an 8-yard run on the game-winning drive. Smith was tied for the NFL lead with 11 turnovers, including eight interceptions, through four games. He delivered a near-perfect performance against the Falcons, completing 16 of 20 passes for 199 yards and three touchdowns with no turnovers. Smith remained poised when sacked four times. “It’s a mindset,” he said. “I made it my duty to come out here and not put the ball on the ground and not put my team in jeopardy. It came down to a last second drive against a tough Atlanta team on the road. We stood up tonight. It just speaks volume to this team’s character.”

ATLANTA: Falcons punter Matt Bosher (5) tackles New York Jets wide receiver Clyde Gates (19) during the first half of an NFL football game. — AP onship game,” New York linebacker Demario Davis said. “You have to fight to the end. That’s what champions do, back against the rope, any situation. You have to keep swinging. That’s what we were able to do.” The Falcons (1-4) feared it could be another anchor thrown on a season that seems to be sinking fast. Atlanta already has more losses than last season, when it was 13-3 and played in the NFC championship game. Now the Falcons are four games behind the Saints in the NFC South and enter their

Don Bosco Oratory

FALCONS IN LOSING STREAK: In Mike Smith’s first five seasons as the Falcons’ coach, they never lost back-to-back regular-season games. Now they’ve lost three straight, their longest streak since 2007. “We came up short,” safety William Moore said. “We can’t play like that. It’s embarrassing, not with the talent we have on this football team. It’s not going to work.” There were looks of disbelief throughout the Falcons’ locker room following the loss. “Extremely frustrating,” tight end Tony Gonzalez said. “It’s put us in a deep hole. We’ve got to dig ourselves out of it. “We’re 1-4. What we are going to do, sit here and feel sorry for ourselves? I’m not going to put my hands up and say the season is over. We’ve still got a lot of football left to play. I’m going to

believe and I expect my teammates to believe.” BETTER BALANCE FOR JETS: Running backs Mike Goodson and Chris Ivory provided balance for the Jets’ running game, which had relied heavily on Bilal Powell in the first four games. Powell had 12 carries for 38 yards. Goodson made his debut in his return from a four-game suspension for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy. Goodson ran for 32 yards on only three carries, including a 26-yarder. Ivory added 27 yards. Smith completed passes to eight receivers. He threw touchdown passes to Jeremy Kerley, who started as Santonio Holmes was held out with foot and hamstring injuries, and tight ends Jeff Cumberland and Kellen Winslow. RED-ZONE FAILURE: The Falcons began the week ranked 29th in touchdown percentage in the red zone. Running back Steven Jackson was held out with a hamstring injury for the third straight week and his absence again was felt, especially when the Falcons were stopped at the Jets 1 on two straight plays to end the first half. The first play from the 1 resulted in an incomplete pass, but the Jets were called for pass interference when they grabbed Gonzalez as he tried to get open. The Falcons then gave the ball to Jacquizz Rodgers, listed at 5-foot-6 and 196 pounds. Rodgers was swarmed by the Jets’ defensive front. “In the red zone, that can’t happen,” Gonzalez said. “That kills you and it came back to haunt us today.” Gonzalez had 10 catches for 97 yards. He joined Jerry Rice (274) as the only players in NFL history to catch a pass in 200 consecutive games. FALCONS NEED TIME TO HEAL: Wide receiver Roddy White, who has struggled with a high ankle sprain all season, left the game in the fourth quarter with a hamstring injury. The Falcons also lost running back Jason Snelling to a concussion, adding to an injury list that already was daunting with Jackson, left tackle Sam Baker (knee) and linebacker Akeem Dent (ankle). Linebacker Sean Weatherspoon (foot) must miss at least five more games. The Falcons hope Jackson, White, Baker, Dent and others can recover during the bye week. —AP

Kerala Challengers

ATLANTA: Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez (88) moves the ball after a catch as New York Jets cornerback Darrin Walls (30) defends during the second half of an NFL football game. — AP

NFL standings American Football Conference AFC East W L T OTL PF PA PCT New England 4 1 0 0 95 70 .800 Miami 3 2 0 0 114 117 .600 NY Jets 3 2 0 0 98 116 .600 Buffalo 2 3 0 0 112 130 .400 AFC North Baltimore 3 2 0 0 117 110 .600 Cleveland 3 2 0 0 101 94 .600 Cincinnati 3 2 0 0 94 87 .600 Pittsburgh 0 4 0 0 69 110 0 AFC South Indianapolis 4 1 0 0 139 79 .800 Tennessee 3 2 0 1 115 95 .600 Houston 2 3 0 1 93 139 .400 Jacksonville 0 5 0 0 51 163 0 AFC West Denver 5 0 0 0 230 139 1.000 Kansas City 5 0 0 0 128 58 1.000 Oakland 2 3 0 0 98 108 .400 San Diego 2 3 0 0 125 129 .400

National Football Conference NFC East Philadelphia 2 3 0 0 135 159 .400 Dallas 2 3 0 0 152 1360 .400 Washington 1 3 0 0 91 112 .250 NY Giants 0 5 0 0 82 182 0 NFC North Detroit 3 2 0 0 131 123 .600 Chicago 3 2 0 0 145 140 .600 Green Bay 2 2 0 0 118 97 .500 Minnesota 1 3 0 0 115 123 .250 NFC South New Orleans 5 0 0 0 134 73 1.000 Carolina 1 3 0 0 74 58 .250 Atlanta 1 4 0 0 122 134 .200 Tampa Bay 0 4 0 0 44 70 0 NFC West Seattle 4 1 0 0 137 81 .800 San Francisco 3 2 0 0 113 98 .600 Arizona 3 2 0 0 91 95 .600 St. Louis 2 3 0 0 103 141 .400

Kuwait Goan Association

Kerala Challengers rout United Friends in KIFF League KUWAIT: The fourth round of the KIFF League matches was held on 4th October 2013 at the Al Kazema grounds in Adeliya on match day 4 for the J.P. D’Mello Rolling Trophy. Four matches were held with Kuwait Goan Association holding Real Betalbatim FC to a goalless draw, Don Bosco Oratory piping GOA Maroons 1-0, Kerala Challengers routing United Friends Club 4-2 and YRC Rising Stars blanking United Goans 30. In the first match on ground ‘A’ between KGA and RBFC, both the teams played cautious football and attacking at counters. RBFC kept the attacking KGA strikers at bay. RBFC tried to break the deadlock and as both the teams failed in finding the net the match ended in a tame draw. Cristovam Colaco of KGA was

declared the Man of the Match and the award was present by Manuel D’Costa ex KIFF President. In the second match on ground ‘B’ DBO started the proceedings against GOA Maroons. Both teams fresh from their successful opening encounters started with intent. DBO took the lead when young Nikhil D’Souza scored the all important goal. GOA Maroons tried in vain to come back into the match, but their efforts went in vain as the match ended in favor of DBO 1-0. Nikhil of DBO was adjudged the Man of the Match for his brilliant display and the award was handed over by Mr. Vijay the President of RBFC. The third match of the day was between YRC Rising Stars and United Goans on ground ‘A’. Rising Stars attacked from the start and

Bernard gave the lead for Rising Stars and went on to complete his brace with Xavier scoring the third to give his side a comfortable win. UG forwards and midfield could not coordinate and their defense crumbled against the onslaught of Rising Stars. The match ended in favor of Rising stars 3-0

with Bernard of Rising Stars bagging the Man of the Match award presented by Pascal the President of UG. The fourth match saw Kerala Challengers locking horns with United Friends Club. Kerala Challengers found their rhythm from the start and Fajilu scored to give the lead and Rafeeq consolidated to make it 2-0 for Kerala Challengers. Fajilu completed his brace with Shaberali also scoring for Kerala Challengers. UFC did try best and scored two through Abdul Muneer, but it was not their day as Kerala Challengers won the match 4-2 and UFC losing their second on the run. Fajilu was rightly adjudged the Man of the Match was for his overall performance and the award was handed over by Mr. Bosco Leitao.

Nikhil of DBO

YRC Rising Stars

Bernard of YRC

Real Betalbatim FC

The matches were supervised by IFRA officials. Man of the Match awards for KIFF League season are sponsored by United Steel Industrial Company. KIFF would like to inform all affiliates and football fans that the football action now shifts to MOH grounds near Sabah Hospital from 11th October 2013. KIFF would like to thank the authorities of Al Kazema Stadium for their wholehearted support in providing the grounds to conduct its activities. The match schedule for 11th October 2013 to be played at MOH grounds at Sabah Hospital is as follows: At 6.45 am Skynet Raiders v/s Santos United. At 7.45 am Curtorcares United v/s Indian Strikers. At 8.45 am AVC - Kuwait v/s DHL FC. At 9.45 Malabar United v/s FC Sparx.



Back on Italy squad, Rossi taking it step by step ROME: Now that Giuseppe Rossi is back on Italy’s squad, he doesn’t plan to make the same mistake he made two seasons ago. Rossi acknowledged on Tuesday that one of the reasons why he re-injured his right knee in April 2012, was because he was pushing too hard to return from a torn anterior cruciate ligament in time for that year’s European Championship. The result was another year out and it’s only been over the past month that Rossi has finally returned to form. “During my recovery I thought a lot about the future and I thought about being at the Euros and I paid the price,” Rossi said at Italy’s training camp in Florence. “I learned that I need to go step by step.” Rossi watched from home in New Jersey while Italy reached the final of Euro 2012 and finished third in this year’s Confederations Cup. Italy’s next big tournament is the World Cup in Brazil. Rossi was among the final players cut by then-

coach Marcello Lippi from the squad for the 2010 World Cup, and going to Brazil next year is clearly on his mind. “It’s a dream for all of us,” Rossi said. “But I’ve learned to take things day by day so I don’t want to think too far ahead. I want to think about today’s training for now, these matches, and Fiorentina. I can think about the World Cup later on. I hope I’m in great form when the callups are made.” The 26-year-old Rossi was a fixture in the attack of current Italy coach Cesare Prandelli until he first tore his ACL during a game against Real Madrid in October 2011 while with Spanish club Villarreal. After three operations, Rossi transferred to Fiorentina in January but played only briefly in the final Serie A match of last season. In this campaign, he has six goals in nine matches for the Tuscan squad. “It’s a very important year for me,” Rossi said. “I’m starting over from zero, as a new player. It’s a

new league for me and I have a lot of things to learn with a new coach and new teammates. So far it’s been a good start.” However, Rossi picked up a few bruises over the last 10 days with Fiorentina and he remains questionable for Italy’s final two World Cup qualifiers at Denmark on Friday and against Armenia in Naples four days later. The Azzurri have already qualified, so neither he nor Italy’s staff wants to push him into action too soon. “After two years out and so many matches grouped together so closely with Fiorentina it’s been tough,” Rossi said. “We’ll see over these next few days but I never turn my back on a match.” Rossi’s combination of skill and speed could provide the perfect complement to Mario Balotelli’s strength and talent. “We all know Mario’s characteristics but I would play well with any forward here,” Rossi said. “It’s an honor to be here after such a long time out.”

Rossi was asked if he plays the “good boy” role to Balotelli’s “bad boy” personality. “He’s not bad. But nobody is a saint, not even me,” Rossi said. “We have a lot of things in common. We all get along. It’s a great group.” Having been away for so long, Rossi sees a major difference in this Italy squad from the one he left. “I find it’s a much more mature group, and more confident, and that’s really important,” he said. Rossi was born in New Jersey to Italian immigrants and his father Fernando taught him to play and inspired him to seek out the Azzurri, even though he could have been a leader for the U.S. His dad died in 2010 and he was the first person Rossi thought about when asked who he would thank when he plays for Italy again. “He’s the one who got me here,” Rossi said. “And I’ve also got to thank all the physiotherapists, in New York and Fiorentina, who helped me, too.” — AP

Poyet convinced he can keep Sunderland on top

MADRID: Spain’s coach Vicente del Bosque (left) gestures past his players during a training session at Las Rozas Sport City ahead of their FIFA World Cup 2014 qualifier football match Spain vs Belarus on October 11. — AFP

Ghana wants neutral venue for Egypt World Cup playoff GENEVA: Ghana wants a neutral venue for next month’s crucial World Cup playoff against Egypt, saying it’s too dangerous to play the game in Cairo. In a letter to FIFA published on its website, the Ghana Football Association said the match should be moved to a “safe and secure” venue. “Our request is premised on the alarming and fast deteriorating security situation in Egypt,” Ghana officials wrote. At least 51 people were killed in riots in Cairo last weekend linked to the ousting of elected state president Mohammed Morsi. The GFA said some of its players expressed “grave concern over their safety for the match.” “Much as we sympathize with our brothers at the Egyptian Football Association, we are highly concerned about the security and safety of our players, officials and supporters and would like FIFA to take the necessary steps to protect lives from both Ghana and Egypt during the second-leg game,” the letter stated. FIFA said yesterday it received Ghana’s request and would monitor the security situation before making a decision. Egypt is scheduled to host Ghana in Cairo on Nov. 19 in the second leg to decide which team advances to next year’s tournament in Brazil. The first leg is next Tuesday in Kumasi. The GFA said Egyptian authorities have barred spectators from football matches for the past two years, including World Cup qualifiers against Mozambique, Zimbabwe

and Guinea. The first two qualifiers were in Alexandria because FIFA banned Egypt from playing in the capital after violence at a 2010 World Cup playoff. Four years ago, Algeria’s team bus was attacked by fans hurling rocks on the journey between the airport and a hotel in Cairo. FIFA’s disciplinary committee said the Egypt FA “failed to take all the necessary security precautions to ensure the safety of the Algerian delegation.” It also fined the Egypt FA 100,000 Swiss francs (then $88,000). Egypt’s World Cup qualifying campaign has been a success despite being buffeted by the political turmoil in the country. The playoff draw last month paired Egypt with powerful Ghana, which reached the quarterfinals at the 2010 World Cup when it beat the U.S. in the round of 16. Now, FIFA could be forced by security risks to deny Egypt and its fans the chance to see the match on home ground. “Events in the country pointedly indicate that our delegation could be exposed to danger as the violence and insecurity in the country continues relentlessly,” the Ghana letter said. If FIFA grants the request, Egypt would be the second of 10 African playoff teams denied a home match. Senegal will play its home second leg against Ivory Coast in Casablanca, Morocco, on Nov. 16. Last October, rioting at the stadium in Dakar when the same two teams met in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier forced the match to be abandoned. — AP

Qatar dominate women handball KUWAIT: Qatari women handball team continued its dominance of the first Gulf Women Handball Tournament defeating Kuwait 28-10, and this guaranteed them the championship even before the final round and their match against Bahrain. Bahrain defeated the UAE team by a

score of 15-13. This gave hope to the Bahrainis to win third place, because their competitor for the bronze is UAE who will face Oman which already took second place with two wins. Kuwait ended in last place after losing three matches and managed a draw with Bahrain.

LONDON: Gus Poyet is confident of preserving struggling Sunderland’s Premier League status after he was appointed as the club’s new manager yesterday. The 45-year-old Uruguayan has replaced controversial Italian Paolo Di Canio, who was sacked last month by the bottom-of-the-table Black Cats. They have earned just one point from a possible 21 in their first seven matches of the season. “I do believe we can get safe. I need to convince the players, I need to convince everybody to really believe in this and we start today,” Poyet told reporters at his first news conference at the Stadium of Light. “I want to make sure everybody commits to the cause.” Sunderland have had six head coaches in the last five years and Poyet said it was important to bring some stability to the club. “That is one of my aims. I’ve had one job as a manager so far and I was there for four years, so that speaks for itself. “Whenever a new manager arrives he wants to stay as long as possible, I am confident but I don’t want to say now we are going to do this and do that, I want to prove it and I hope I will be sitting here smiling at the end of the season.” The former international midfielder, whose clubs included Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur in England, Real Zaragosa in Spain and River Plate in Uruguay, was sacked by Championship side Brighton and Hove Albion in June for an undisclosed breach of club discipline. Sunderland chairman Ellis Short said in a statement on the club’s website ( “We analysed a wide range of candidates and believe that Gus’s track record, experience, commitment and passion make him the right man to take us forward.” Kevin Ball took temporary charge after Di Canio’s dismissal, and Sunderland beat thirdtier Peterborough United in the League Cup but lost to Liverpool and Manchester United

SUNDERLAND: Sunderland’s new Uruguyan manager Gus Poyet holds a Sunderland scarf at a photo call at the Academy of Light. — AFP

in the league while he was in charge. Di Canio was brought in by Sunderland in March to replace Martin O’Neill when the club looked set for relegation. Di Canio managed to keep Sunderland up but the team won only three of his 13 matches while he was there and he went after a 3-0 defeat to West Bromwich Albion on Sept.21. British media said the Sunderland players were unhappy with Di Canio’s abrasive management style and public criticism of them but the Italian denied reports of a training ground bust-up following defeat to West Brom. Poyet was an early favourite for the role, despite his acrimonious parting with

Brighton, whom he led to the Championship (second tier) playoffs. He was suspended following the playoff semi-final defeat to Crystal Palace in May, and found out he had been fired as manager while working as a pundit on live television. Poyet appealed but Brighton upheld the decision. He will bring Mauricio Taricco and Charlie Oatway to Sunderland as part of his backroom staff, with his first match against Swansea City on Oct. 19 followed by the always intense derby against arch-rivals Newcastle United at home the following weekend. — Reuters

Milan to play behind closed doors over abusive chants ITALY: Italy’s football authorities have ordered AC Milan to play their next game behind closed doors and fined the club 50,000 euros ($67,900) following abusive chants by supporters during a match against southern club Napoli. During Sunday’s match against Juventus in Turin, hundreds of Milan supporters shouted “We are not Neapolitans”, a chant the Naples daily Il Mattino said reflected long-standing contempt for the south by northern clubs. In the fiercely territorial world of Italian football, abusive rivalry between supporters of clubs in the rich north and those in the poorer south is not uncommon and Milan officials reacted with shock to the verdict by Serie A sporting judges. “To say I’m furious would be putting it mildly,” Milan chief executive Adriano Galliani told reporters. “I understand that racism is a big problem, a problem everywhere in the world in Italy we have invented territorial discrimination for ourselves. “I called (Italian football) president (Giancarlo) Abete to ask whether he thinks that this rule is just. What I ask is that it is abolished.” A football federation (FIGC) spokesman said the rules were being applied in line with UEFA guidelines. “It’s not as though the rules are imposed on any club. It’s down to a judge to decide on the punishment, and they can make their case against any decision,” he said. The sentence means that Milan, in 12th place in the Serie A standings after a 3-2 loss to Juventus on Sunday, will play their next home game on Oct. 19 against Udinese behind closed doors. The ruling has enraged hardcore “ultra” fans, who are fed up with having the sections the stadiums and entire grounds closed for what they see as the harmless expression of sporting rivalry. Napoli fans in the Curva B section of the San Paolo stadium on Sunday brought out a banner referring to the chants which read: “Naples cholera-sufferers. Now close our curva!”. They then began singing the offending chants which follow them up and down the country. Ultras of both AC Milan and Inter Milan spoke out on Tuesday, both releasing on their websites bemoaning the decision. “Welcome to the country where teasing and making fun (of opponents) motivate sanctions that limit freedom. In Italy we are seeing in recent days a ridiculous interpretation of the rules that is making us the targets of a senseless and unjustifiable a t t a c k ,” said a statement on — Reuters

DUESSELDORF: German goalkeeper Manuel Neuer warms up during a training session. Germany will face the Republic of Ireland in a 2014 World Cup qualification football match in Cologne on October 11. — AFP

Gulf Cup shifts from Iraq to Saudi Arabia MANAMA: The football federations overseeing the Gulf Cup have moved next year’s tournament from the Iraqi city of Basra to Saudi Arabia after concerns over preparations and security. The decision comes amid Iraq’s deadliest

spike in violence since 2008. The Kuwait News Agency says the eight-team event will be shifted to Jiddah. This year, Basra was given more time to finish construction for the 2014 event. But the envoys

meeting in Bahrain made the move yesterday. The Gulf Cup, which started in 1970, brings together Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Yemen and the reigning champion United Arab Emirates. —AP

Poyet convinced he can keep Sunderland on top

Bangladesh plan to spin NZ




Olympic flame under fire after failures

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SHANGHAI: Canada’s Vasek Pospisil returns a shot against Franceís Richard Gasquet at the first round of the Shanghai Masters tennis tournament. Pospisil won 6-3, 6-4. — AP

Gasquet ousted by Pospisil in Shanghai SHANGHAI: Frenchman Richard Gasquet became the first high-profile casualty at the Shanghai Masters yesterday, swiftly followed out of the exit door by compatriot Gilles Simon as organisers scrambled to keep the storm-hit event on track. Drenching rains, which flooded streets near the venue-the lingering effects of Typhoon Fitow-forced a switch to indoor courts at the Qizhong Tennis Center, with tournament chiefs attempting to make up for lost match time the previous day. Ninth-seed Gasquet’s tame 6-3, 6-4 defeat to Vasek Pospisil deals a heavy blow to his hopes of reaching next month’s World Tour

Finals in London, which feature the season’s top eight players. Gasquet is currently ninth in the Race to London. Canada’s Pospisil, ranked 43rd in the world, broke in the fourth game of the first set and again at the start of the second in a match lasting 69 minutes, with the Frenchman unable to muster a single break point. Simon, the 13th seed, was also a first-round loser, slipping to a 6-4, 6-3 defeat to countryman Benoit Paire. But Japan’s Kei Nishikori reversed the slide for the seeds, comfortably seeing off the challenge of Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov 6-3, 6-4. Canadian 10th seed Milos

Raonic won his late evening match against Michal Przysiezny 6-4, 6-4. Shanghai yesterday saw its greatest daily average rainfall since 1961, web portal East Day reported, citing municipal weather authorities. From 8:00 pm on Monday until noon yesterday, the city received 15.3 centimetres (6.02 inches) of rain. The wet weather meant a number of changes to the schedule throughout the day, with doubles matches postponed in an effort to complete all the first round matches before the likes of Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal make their entrance. Veteran Lleyton Hewitt

earlier lost 6-4, 6-2 to Andreas Seppi, missing out on the chance of a second round matchup against old rival and fifth seed Roger Federer. Hewitt, 32, who has slipped out of the world’s top 50, started strongly, breaking at the first opportunity and taking a 3-0 lead. But Seppi withstood the charge, winning five games in a row to seize the initiative. The Australian wildcard showed only occasional glimpses of his fighting ability as world number 22 Seppi cut down on his error count and broke Hewitt twice at the start of the second set.

“He played a lot better,” said Hewitt. “He hardly missed a ball after the first three games. I had chances to go up four-love. From then on, he played really well. He served better than I’ve seen him serve before.” “I served in patches. Probably when I was down breakpoints and stuff, I didn’t get enough first serves in,” added Hewitt. “He’s such a tough player to play when the ball is on his terms.” Among the other winners yesterday were Spanish seeds Tommy Robredo and Nicolas Almagro. The top eight seeds all have a bye into the second round. — AFP

Miracle recovery? I’m still in pain, says Nadal ly to find solutions to manage his knee, which he admitted was “not 100 percent perfect”. “But the feeling on the knee is very good for me because even if I have pain a lot of days, the pain is not limiting my movements,” he said. “That’s the most important thing. I am playing with no limitations. I am free when I am playing. “Even if I have pain, I am able to control that pain. In the past I was not able to control the pain, so I couldn’t play. But the feeling is I would like to improve a little bit more.” The Mallorcan, whose US Open victory last month gave him 13 Grand Slam wins just four behind Roger Federer-said it was special to be world number one again, a chance he did not believe he would have. But despite his phenomenal success on hardcourts this year, Nadal, who has been consistently plagued by knee problems, said he still believed that too much tennis is played on the surface. “I say this because I think it’s going to be better for the next generations, if they are able to play on an easier surface for the body, to try to have a longer career, to try to be more healthy when they finish their careers,” he said. “Probably I will not be that lucky.” Nadal has continually defied dire predictions that the wear and tear from his intense, physical style would end his career early. And he said he hoped to prove the doubters wrong again by playing on to the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, when he will be 30. “For the last five years, it seems like lot of people were saying I will not be able to play long the way that I play,” said Nadal, Olympic singles champion in 2008. “But I am here again at 27-and-a-half years old and I really hope to have the chance to be here for a lot of more years. “So still in my mind Olympics in Brazil. I really want to arrive there in good condition. It’s a real goal for me.” Nadal missed last year’s Olympics, when he was defending champion, with his knee injury. In Shanghai he can become the first man to win six Masters titles in one year, an achieveCHINA: Rafael Nadal of Spain speaks at a press conference during the Shanghai Masters tennis ment which would add further gloss to his remarkable season. — AFP tournament in Shanghai. — AFP SHANGHAI: Rafael Nadal yesterday revealed he’s still in pain despite his titanic form since returning from injury-and played down suggestions a hi-tech treatment was behind his amazing comeback. Nadal has had a sensational year, winning 10 titles including two Grand Slams after seven months out with a left knee injury, and displacing Novak Djokovic as world number one in the latest rankings. Britain’s Daily Mail newspaper on Monday said the use of hitech training machinery and platelet-rich plasma therapy (PRP) were key reasons for the Spaniard’s revival. But the 27-year old told reporters at the Shanghai Masters that while a combination of machines and PRP had “worked unbelievable” on his knee in the past, there was no magic cure this time

around. “With the injury I have now, I did (try PRP),” he said. “I tried a lot of times, and it really didn’t help me a lot. “The machines I have at home, the only thing that helps me is to make me a little bit more fit without having to run or something like this, or putting pressure on the tendon. “But seriously, we didn’t find the key to the recovery because I need to keep working hard on finding things that will help me more.” PRP, known as “blood-spinning”, involves taking an athlete’s blood and spinning it in a centrifuge to increase the platelet count. It is then re-injected in the affected area. The practice is not banned and was removed from the World Anti-Doping Agency’s prohibited list for 2011. Nadal said his team was working constant-

Cameroon striker Samuel Eto’o

Cameroon striker Eto’o in retirement u-turn YAOUNDE: Chelsea striker Samuel Eto’o, has reversed his decision to retire from international football, pledging yesterday to join up with Cameroon for next week’s 2014 World Cup Africa Zone play-off in Tunisia. Last month the record four-time winner of the African Footballer of the Year award told his Cameroon teammates he was quitting the national team. His u-turn will be welcome news to the ‘Indomitable Lions’ who face Tunisia in Rades on October 13 followed by the return leg in Yaounde on November 17. “You can have all the problems in the world but you have to see out your mission,” the 32-year-old told Cameroon state radio. “And this time it’s to join my teammates in Tunisia and return with a good result.” He will link up with the national squad in the French Cote d’Azur resort of Nice on Wednesday to prepare for the match. Eto’o made his debut for Cameroon, who are out to secure their seventh participation at a World Cup finals, in 1997. He has regularly disagreed with Cameroon

coaches and his initial retirement may have been linked to the selections of present incumbent Volker Finke. The German reportedly ignored calls from Eto’o to start with goalkeeper Carlos Kameni and striker Achille Webo against the Libyans in their final group qualifying match-Eto’o still played and from his corner they scored the only goal of the game to progress to the play-offs. Shortly after that Eto’o announced he was retiring from international football. Eto’o-a member of the Cameroon side who won Olympic gold in 2000 — was banned from the ‘Indomitable Lions’ last year after inciting a bonus-related boycott of a friendly in Algeria. Recalled for a Cup of Nations qualifier against Cape Verde, he could not prevent Cameroon missing the 2013 finals in South Africa. Born in Atlantic city Douala, he played for Real Madrid, Mallorca, Barcelona and Inter Milan before joining big-spending Anzhi, moving to Chelsea in the close season. — AFP

Business WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 9, 2013

US deadlock fears weigh on shares Page 24 What default? Republicans downplay impact of crisis Page 23

India car sales post steepest drop in decade

US debt ceiling laced with the dangerous unknowns

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NUSA DUA: Leaders line up for the traditional “leaders’ family photo” at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit in Nusa Dua on the Indonesian resort island of Bali yesterday. — AFP

US, China tussle for trade dominance Clashing agendas overshadow APEC summit in the


KOC plans tender KUWAIT: A unit of state-owned Kuwait Oil Company (KOC) will launch a tender later this year for the construction of facilities to produce heavy oil at a cost of up to 1.2 billion dinars ($4.2 billion), its chief executive said. KOC, a division of Kuwait Petroleum Corp, also plans to drill 260 wells in the Gulf Arab state during the 2013/2014 fiscal year at a cost of 600-700 million dinars, KOC CEO Hashem Hashem said. This is part of efforts to meet Kuwait’s target of producing 4 million barrels of oil a day by 2020, he told reporters on the sidelines of an oil conference late on Monday. OPEC member Kuwait currently produces around 3 million barrels of oil a day and exports around two-thirds. KOC said last month it expects to produce far less heavy crude from the Ratqa field and less light oil from the Jurassic field by 2020 than originally hoped and did not answer questions about whether it would reach its 2020 production target.

Samba posts flat profit DUBAI: Samba Financial Group, Saudi Arabia’s secondlargest listed bank, posted a flat third-quarter net profit yesterday, coming in slightly below the average forecast of analysts. The bank said in a bourse filing it made 1.17 billion riyals ($312 million) in the three months to Sept 30, compared with 1.16 billion riyals in the same period of last year, attributing the marginal rise to a 3 percent gain in operating income. Ten analysts surveyed by Reuters had forecast it would, on average, post a net profit for the quarter of 1.2 billion riyals. Samba’s loans portfolio climbed 15.9 percent on the same point last year to 113.7 billion riyals at the end of September, in line with the 15 percent year-onyear growth in bank lending to private companies noted by the central bank in its August data. Deposits grew by 8.3 percent year-on-year to reach 155.2 billion riyals at the end of the third quarter. Moody’s said yesterday the outlook for the Saudi banking system remained stable, with low problem loan levels, strong loss-absorption capacity of banks, and the benefits of low-cost deposit-based funding counterbalanced by competitive pressures on lending margins and some corporate sector weakness.

Serbia slashes wages BELGRADE: The Serbian government adopted yesterday austerity measures, including slashing the pay of state employees by up to 25 percent, in a bid to balance the budget and stave off bankruptcy. A sixmeasure package presented by Finance Minister Lazar Krstic at an open government session also included a VAT sales tax increase from 8 to 10 percent for basic goods, and slashing state subsidies and public sector spending. “Without these measures, we will be bankrupt in the next two years,” Krstic told the session. Serbia’s economy is mired in recession, having contracted by 1.7 percent last year, and unemployment stands at 24 percent. The government has so far failed to take sharp action to control public finances, letting the budget deficit swell up to 4.7 percent of GDP this year, while public debt is higher than 60 percent of GDP. “Our goal is to stabilize public debt by 2016-2017 and to put deficit at around 2 percent of GDP,” Krstic said.

NUSA DUA: The United States yesterday intensified its drive to clinch an ambitious Asia-Pacific trade pact by the end of the year, raising the hackles of China at a regional summit in Indonesia. The AsiaPacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) event, at a five-star resort on the tropical island of Bali, was aimed at breaking down trade barriers among all 21 member economies amid the gloom of a faltering global economy. Members of APEC, which groups just over half of the global economy, voiced concerns in a closing statement about its fragile state. “Global growth is too weak, risks remain tilted to the downside, global trade is weakening and the economic outlook suggests growth is likely to be slower and less balanced than desired,” the leaders’ statement said. But clashing agendas by the United States and China overshadowed the gathering of leaders, as well as preceding meetings by their trade chiefs. US President Barack Obama had to pull out of the APEC summit because of a deepening political and financial crisis in Washington, and several leaders in Bali expressed concern about the threat of a US debt default. But, filling in for Obama,

Secretary of State John Kerry pressed on with a full-court lobbying press to try to secure agreement on the “Trans-Pacific Partnership” grouping 12 APEC nations. Significantly, the TPP excludes China. And Indonesia, Southeast Asia’s largest economy, has stayed out. After the APEC summit finished, Kerry convened a meeting of leaders of the 11 other TPP nations-including Australia, Japan, Malaysia and Mexico-in a bid to beat an against-the-odds deadline set by Obama for a deal by the end of 2013. In a statement, the United States and its TPP partners said they were still aiming to clinch the deal in less than three months after making “significant progress” on a range of issues. “We see the Trans-Pacific Partnership, with its high ambition and pioneering standards for new trade disciplines, as a model for future trade agreements,” the statement said. The United States has championed the TPP as setting “gold standards” to deal with complex changes to the 21st-century economy, such as how to police cloud computing and patents. But China, and even some developing nations included in the TPP, have expressed concern that it will lay

down trade rules mainly benefiting the richest countries and most powerful firms. “China will commit itself to building a trans-Pacific regional cooperation framework that benefits all parties,” President Xi Jinping said at the APEC business forum, which came after he oversaw tens of billions of dollars in trade deals on visits to Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur. Xi’s comments were interpreted in China’s state-run media yesterday as direct criticism of the TPP. “The Trans-Pacific Partnership, featuring confidential talks and the highest free trade standard beyond mere lower tariffs, is widely considered a new step for the US to dominate the economy in the Asia-Pacific region,” the China Daily newspaper said in a front-page report on Xi’s speech. Indonesia also signaled its irritation at the US focus on TPP at the APEC summit, shunting yesterday afternoon’s meeting to a hotel outside the official venue. “We mind, actually, and one of the reasons, at the very least, is we don’t want any coverage that will overshadow APEC,” an Indonesian government official said, when asked why the TPP countries had been told to meet elsewhere. Obama’s decision not to come to Asia for APEC and a subsequent

East Asia summit in Brunei has reinforced sentiment that his high-profile diplomatic, economic and military focus on the region, known as the “pivot”, is in tatters. Kerry was forced at APEC repeatedly to insist that the Asia-Pacific region remained a top priority, and he tried to wrest back the initiative on the trade front. But analysts said Obama’s no-show would not help the TPP, with disputes over the US desire to expand market access, the protection of intellectual property and the influence of Asian state owned enterprises. “Over the past months, American negotiators have pushed hard for Asians to give into US interests in the TPP. Resistance has grown,” Singapore Institute of International Affairs chairman Simon Tay said. “This would have been a good chance for Obama to personally push for the trade deal, which he cannot do if he is not present.” Indonesia and China are involved in plans for a rival free trade pact involving 16 countries around the region, which is being spearheaded by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Negotiations for that pact, which excludes the United States, are expected to be discussed in Brunei this week. —AFP

APEC leaders agree to increase intra-region trade, connectivity By Ben Garcia NUSA DUA: The 2013 Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit chaired by Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono officially concluded at Indonesian Bali Resort yesterday. The dialogue between APEC leaders and the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC), addressed the role of APEC in strengthening the multilateral trade system to deal with the current global economic condition. “Our APEC Summit was successfully completed and was very productive. Within two days, we discussed the central theme of APEC 2013: Resilient Asia Pacific: Engine for Global Growth. After intense deliberations, needless to say, we agreed on a number of strategic points,” he pointed out. APEC’s chairman highlighted seven important points which include redoubling effort to attain the Bogor goals in 2020. He said APEC member economies will continue to benefit from APEC cooperation. “All of us agreed to take steps to empower, engage and open opportunities to all stakeholders to participate in the APEC process and benefit from it,” he said. Yudhoyono also mentioned the plan to increase intra-region trade which includes trade facilitation and efficient functioning of multilateral trade system. The summit chairman also noted the need for an increase in people-to-people connectivity through development and investment in infrastructure. “We share the vision that connectivity can reduce production and transportation costs and strengthen regional supply chain and business climate. At the same time, connectivity will

create more jobs and ensure job security,” he added. Yudhoyono also re-affirmed APEC commitment to achieving strong, balanced, sustainable and inclusive global growth and strong participation of small, medium and micro-sizedenterprises, youth and human entrepreneurs. Yudhoyono also emphasized the need to cooperate in enhancing regional food, energy, and water security. “This effort is also responding to the challenge of population growth and the adverse effects of climate change. We also agree that close collaboration with business sectors through APEC is essential to achieve the objective of a free and open trade and investment. It will create a win-win situation, especially now when global economy is yet to recover. Now that we have this agreement and commitment, we must show the world that APEC will continue to play a significant role in global economy. I believe that all APEC economies will share the responsibility and live up to these commitments,” he added. He thanked the leaders and their delegations for the support throughout the summit. He emphasized the importance of APEC to narrow the development gap between economies through the multilateral trade system currently promoted through the Doha Development Agenda (DDA) discussed in the World Trade Organization (WTO). Earlier in the summit, the effort to establish collaboration between Food Safety Cooperation and the Partnership Training Institute Network was also clearly discussed. Even though the two systems have been running well, Indonesia, as the chair of APEC, considers a more concrete roadmap as necessary. The roadmap covers a shared strategy of the

NUSA DUA: Performers dance during a cultural performance, part of a gala dinner hosted for the leaders at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit. — AFP The roadmap particularly highlights the public-private sector to strengthen food securiimportant role of farmers and fishermen to ty in the Asia-Pacific region. With it, the government along with the pri- increase food production and security, especialvate sector, within each economy, must develop ly those that are small-scale. The alleviation of agriculture and fishery sustainably and facilitate small-scale farmers is one of the most difficult investment and infrastructure development in APEC challenges. Around 87 percent of the total the two sectors. In addition, food security will number of farmers in the world owning not also be attained by improving market and more than 0.22 hectares of land are settled in trade’s role. These strategies will be implement- the Asia-Pacific region. In Indonesia, out of an ed through a business plan to determine the approximate 59 million people who work in direction of a more integrated food security agriculture and fishery, 17 million of them are small farmers. cooperation.



Rolls-Royce eyes Asia Japan, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam seen as hot spots

MANILA: Laborers work in a new building in Manila. — AFP

Booming Philippine outsourcing industry faces worker shortage MANILA: The Philippines’ outsourcing industry faces a shortage of trained personnel after a decade of rapid growth which saw it become a pillar of the economy, the industry association said yesterday. The country’s outsourcing industry, second only to India, is suffering from “growing pains” as booming demand overtakes the supply of trained workers, said Jose Mari Mercado, president of the IT-Business Process Association of the Philippines. The industry, which includes call centers, software design, animation and other functions that foreign companies find cheaper to farm out abroad, has grown by about 20 percent annually since 2007, he said. “We’ve been so successful that our clients are asking us to do more work but the work they are asking us to do requires certain skills we don’t normally have,” he told AFP on the sidelines of an industry summit. There is a growing demand for financing and accounting personnel, and even for experienced middle managers that the industry cannot immediately meet, he added. Mercado projects the industry will

have 960,000 direct employees and earn $16 billion overseas this year, up from 777,000 direct employees and $13 billion in 2012. The industry now accounts for eight percent of the economy and this could rise to about 10 percent by 2016 with 1.3 million direct employees and $25 billion in overseas earnings, he said. The Philippines is the world’s top location for call centers but is finding it difficult to fill more technical jobs. “What is stopping us from growing faster is that our skills and competences have to develop faster to meet the global demand,” Mercado said. “You can’t just say you will hire a middle manager with five years of experience. There are very few people (like that). Definitely it is part of growing pains,” he added. The industry group is working with government and academic circles to develop courses to produce graduates who can meet the demand, he said. Government and industry are also moving to expand the talent pool by setting up more outsourcing centers outside Metropolitan Manila, which now hosts 72 percent of all such companies, he said. — AFP

SINGAPORE: Phantoms, Ghosts and now Wraiths are stalking the streets of Asia and Torsten Mueller-Oetvoes, the chief executive of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, could not be more pleased. The top-end car maker, a unit of Germany’s BMW AG, still sees untapped potential in China - its No 2 market after the United States - but hot spots in Asia include Japan, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam, MuellerOetvoes said. Rolls-Royce is opening its first showroom in Manila “because we see quite good potential in this market, particularly when you look at the projections of ultra-high net worth individuals” in the Philippines, he told Reuters in Singapore. “Japan is flying currently, very much due to Abenomics,” he said. “We have seen many customers coming back into showrooms and coming back to us and asking for a new car.” High luxury is the hallmark. Except for the chassis, every Rolls-Royce is built by hand at the Goodwood plant in the scenic Sussex Downs region of southeast England. Interiors of polished wood, fine leather and plush carpeting are standard, along with a Teflon-coated umbrella that pops out of the door frame. Bespoke versions are available, at a price. “No request is considered too extravagant or unreasonable,” a brochure says. “On one occasion, we even furnished an interior with veneer from a tree felled on the customer’s estate.” Mueller-Oetvoes, a BMW marketing executive who became the boss of Rolls-Royce in 2010, was “cautiously optimistic” about this year, repeating forecasts that global sales will beat last year’s record of 3,575 cars and top the 4,000 mark next year. Part of that optimism is due to the Wraith, a two-door coupe version of the Ghost model introduced this year as the most powerful Rolls-Royce with its twin-turbo, 6.6-litre V12 engine. About 40 percent of orders for the Wraith, priced between the flagship Phantom and the “budget” Ghost, are coming from Asia. “We are basically sold out until May next year,” Mueller-Oetvoes said. “What is more pleasing is that we have seen lots of customers coming to us who never owned a Rolls-Royce before.” SPORTY WRAITH The new Wraith, described as “spectacular

$1,323.00. During the last debate over the US debt ceiling in 2011, gold hit an alltime high of $1,920 an ounce. Congress reached an agreement only at the last minute. The partial US government shutdown has distracted investors from their previous main preoccupation, the timing of the US Federal Reserve’s reduction of its stimulus. “The Fed will probably postpone its retreat from quantitative easing, which could also help to push prices up,” Commerzbank said. Bullion has lost a fifth of its value this year after the Fed announced its intention to stem the flow of easy money. Accommodative monetary policies favor gold as low interest rates encourage investors to put money into non-interest-bearing assets. PHYSICAL SUPPORT Gold prices also found mild support from the Chinese market, which reopened after a week-long National Day holiday, with Hong Kong dealers saying they were seeing some buying interest. China’s net gold purchases from Hong Kong fell 5 percent in August from the previous month, but were still healthy at 110.5 tons. Gold importers in India started processing orders to re-stock ahead of the peak wedding and festival season and after the customs department cleared remaining consignments at a major airport. —Reuters

and improbable” by Car and Driver magazine, has a starting price of about 245,000 euros ($332,500) in Europe but Asian buyers pay a premium. The same car sells in Singapore for S$1,258,888 ($1.01 million) and in India for about 46 million rupees ($743,800), both prices reflecting high import duties on premium vehicles. Rolls-Royce will not stray from the roots of the Phantom and Ghost but the Wraith caters to younger wealthy drivers who want a coupe-like car rather than a sedan, Mueller-Oetvoes said. “I wouldn’t call it a sports car but it is something which is more a dynamic type of Rolls-Royce,” he said. Sport-utility vehicles (SUVs) may also be in the picture as high-end brands Bentley and Lamborghini, both owned by Germany ’s Volkswagen AG, get into that market. Mueller-Oetvoes said he was convinced the SUV market would keep growing and there would be a luxury element. Rolls-Royce has

done initial drawings and is giving SUVs “careful consideration”, he said, but there is no rush “because I would like to make 100 percent sure that if we enter this segment then we have really an immaculate, excellent solution”. Plenty of Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Maseratis and other super cars zoom along the streets in Singapore and elsewhere in Asia but Mueller-Oetvoes said “our competition is not other cars”. “We are rare, we are highly exclusive and we don’t want to be seen at every single street corner,” he said. “Our breed of customers, if they like both cars, they would buy both cars. It is a competition which is more may I go for art, may I go for jewelry or a precious watch or a chalet in the Swiss Alps.” So what does the boss of Rolls-Royce drive? “In my home garage sits a Ghost but in the near future also a Wraith,” Mueller-Oetvoes said. “I have a BMW as well sitting in there and an old Mini but this is it.” — Reuters

DWC to showcase real estate opportunities

Gold inches higher LONDON: Gold inched higher yesterday as faint glimmers of hope in the US fiscal standoff were not enough to dissipate fears the country could still be pushed towards an unprecedented default. The United States faces an Oct 17 deadline to raise its $16.7 trillion debt limit. On Monday, President Barack Obama said he would accept a short-term increase in the nation’s borrowing authority to avoid default. An influential senator was also said to be floating a plan to cut federal spending and reform the US tax code as part of a broader deal. While the budget impasse that has shut down parts of the US government entered its second week and still looked set to continue, hopes for a deal remain strong, analysts said. “There is a realisation that as difficult and serious this budgetary situation in the United States is, eventually a solution will be found and the country won’t default,” Mitsubishi analyst Jonathan Butler said. “There is always the outside chance that this may happen and that may be what is providing a little bit of support to gold but it’s not really that convincing for many investors.” Spot gold rose 0.1 percent to $1,322.79 an ounce by 1009 GMT. It hit a near one-week high at $1,327.94 in the previous session. US gold futures for December fell $2.10 an ounce at

SINGAPORE: Chief executive at Rolls-Royce Torsten Muller-Otvos speaks to journalists at a media event in Singapore yesterday. — AFP

DUBAI: Dubai World Central (DWC), the world’s first purpose-built aerotropolis, has announced that it will be extensively showcasing the real estate investment opportunities available at DWC for investors from around the world, during its participation in Cityscape Global running from October 8-10, 2013 at the Dubai World Trade Centre. DWC revealed that, in particular, it will highlight the numerous opportunities in the Residential, Logistics and Aviation Districts, given the rapid pace of developments taking place in these districts. The Residential District for instance is already being served with all the major services and DWC has constructed and commissioned 132/11kV electrical substations which have been handed over to Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) for final connections to tenants. DEWA, which has started to lay the final distribution cables to supply power to the buildings immediately, is also proceeding with providing water supply to completed buildings in the Residential District. DWC has also constructed and commissioned district cooling plants to supply chilled water for airconditioning in the buildings. Moreover, the main access road to the Residential District has been completed, conveniently connecting the district to the new Emirates Road, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road and to Al Maktoum International Airport. DWC also noted that the demand for resi-

dential accommodation is increasing steadily within the development as a result of the rapidly growing business activities in the Logistics District and Aviation District, and in Al Maktoum International Airport. DWC is also encouraging investors in the Residential District to commence development of their buildings, assuring them of total support and assistance from DWC in terms of infrastructure and facilities, to ensure comfortable living for the occupants. The Logistics District on the other hand is also seeing the development of agent warehouses spread across an area of almost 8,700 square meters, in addition to the logistics park, comprising warehouses, offices and amenities. Currently, there are 40 companies operating in the Logistics District with more than 10,000 employees, creating the need for innovative and comprehensive solutions to meet staff accommodation requirements. Another key real estate element that will be highlighted during DWC’s participation at Cityscape Global will be the hospitality projects, which will cater to the requirements of airport passengers. Around two million travelers are estimated to pass through the passenger terminal at Al Maktoum International Airport by 2014, and this number is expected to reach 30 million by 2023. This will also require the support of at least 30,000 employees. This year’s Cityscape Global holds extreme

significance for Dubai World Central given the array of real estate investment opportunities it has to offer, especially in the Residential, Aviation and Logistics Districts. During the course of the three-day event, DWC plans to meet the entire real estate business chain and discuss in detail the next phase in its future developments. DWC will also be highlighting the numerous distinct features that make it a one-of-a-kind project in the region, right from the aerotropolis concept to the world-class infrastructure and the unique ability to offer seamless sea-air transport logistics. Cityscape Global will serve as the right platform for DWC to promote the aerotropolis concept, and reaffirm how this is being considered as a major development model of this century. Further, the passenger terminal at DWC’s Al Maktoum International Airport will commence operations this October. DWC will also be the venue for this year’s Airshow taking place in November and The Expo 2020 which Dubai is eyeing to host. During Cityscape Global, DWC will shedlight on its business aviation facilities at the Aviation District which is steadily attracting major industry players from around the world. Several companies such as direct operators Jetex and XJet have already announced plans to establish their headquarters at DWC, while DC Aviation Al Futtaim will soon commence operations from its new facility at the Aviation District.

EXCHANGE RATES Al-Muzaini Exchange Co.

UAE Exchange Centre WLL

ASIAN COUNTRIES Japanese Yen Indian Rupees Pakistani Rupees Srilankan Rupees Nepali Rupees Singapore Dollar Hongkong Dollar Bangladesh Taka Philippine Peso Thai Baht Irani Riyal Irani Riyal

2.899 4.554 2.673 2.154 2.841 226.800 36.561 3.639 6.524 9.065 0.271 0.273 GCC COUNTRIES

Saudi Riyal Qatari Riyal Omani Riyal Bahraini Dinar UAE Dirham

75.630 77.927 736.650 753.290 77.237

COUNTRY SELL DRAFT 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 Omani Riyal Qatari Riyal Saudi Riyal

SELL CASH 271.01 278.70 318.39 388.05 282.80 458.26 2.98 3.639 4.578 2.158 2.868 2.666 77.06 752.70 41.03 402.49 735.46 78.09 75.54

272.000 279.000 318.000 390.000 285.500 462.000 3.000 3.700 4.820 2.500 3.300 2.760 77.400 753.500 41.100 407.500 741.500 78.500 75.800

ARAB COUNTRIES Egyptian Pound - Cash Egyptian Pound - Transfer Yemen Riyal/for 1000 Tunisian Dinar Jordanian Dinar Lebanese Lira/for 1000 Syrian Lira Morocco Dirham

41.700 40.679 1.323 173.080 400.510 1.903 1.308 34.914

EUROPEAN & AMERICAN COUNTRIES US Dollar Transfer 283.500 Euro 384.430 Sterling Pound 460.400 Canadian dollar 274.820 Turkish lira 141.040 Swiss Franc 313.780 Australian Dollar 266.350 US Dollar Buying 282.300 GOLD 20 Gram 10 Gram 5 Gram

244.000 124.000 64.000

Dollarco Exchange Co. Ltd 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

Selling Rate 283.150 277.570 456.570 385.480 312.600 747.658 77.070 78.620 76.375 399.145 41.040 2.155 4.586 2.665 3.636 6.562 695.475 3.910 10.015 3.065 3.860

Malaysian Ringgit Thai Bhat Syrian Pound Nepalese Rupees Malaysian Ringgit

89.290 10.030 3.085 3.845 88.405

Singapore Dollar South African Rand Sri Lankan Rupee Taiwan Thai Baht

0.223613 0.022327 0.001827 0.009532 0.008717

0.229613 0.030827 0.002407 0.009712 0.009267

Bahraini Dinar Egyptian Pound Iranian Riyal Iraqi Dinar Jordanian Dinar Kuwaiti Dinar Lebanese Pound Moroccan Dirhams Nigerian Naira Omani Riyal Qatar Riyal Saudi Riyal Syrian Pound Tunisian Dinar Turkish Lira UAE Dirhams Yemeni Riyal

Arab 0.745268 0.038359 0.000078 0.000183 0.395501 1.0000000 0.000139 0.022687 0.001200 0.730072 0.077133 0.074937 0.001929 0.168969 0.140278 0.076178 0.001287

0.753268 0.041459 0.000080 0.000243 0.403001 1.0000000 0.000239 0.046687 0.001835 0.735752 0.078346 0.075637 0.002149 0.176969 0.147278 0.077327 0.001367

Bahrain Exchange Company COUNTRY SELL CASH Belgian Franc British Pound Czech Korune Danish Krone Euro Norwegian Krone Romanian Leu Slovakia Swedish Krona Swiss Franc Turkish Lira

SELLDRAFT Europe 0.007366 0.448723 0.006648 0.047400 0.378907 0.043353 0.081774 0.008124 0.040034 0.307241 0.140278

0.008366 0.457723 0.018648 0.052400 0.386407 0.048553 0.81774 0.018124 0.045034 0.317441 0.147278

Australian Dollar New Zealand Dollar

Australasia 0.259152 0.229206

0.270652 0.238706

Canadian Dollar US Dollars US Dollars Mint

America 0.269466 0.279300 0.279800

0.277966 0.283650 0.283650

Bangladesh Taka Chinese Yuan Hong Kong Dollar Indian Rupee Indonesian Rupiah Japanese Yen Kenyan Shilling Korean Won Malaysian Ringgit Nepalese Rupee Pakistan Rupee Philippine Peso Sierra Leone

Asia 0.003232 0.044844 0.034466 0.004336 0.000020 0.002837 0.003363 0.000253 0.085180 0.002937 0.002526 0.006415 0.000089

0.003832 0.048344 0.037216 0.004737 0.000026 0.003017 0.003363 0.000268 0.091180 0.003107 0.002806 0.006695 0.000075

Al Mulla Exchange CurrencyTransfer Rate (Per 1000) US Dollar Euro Pound Sterling Canadian Dollar Indian Rupee Egyptian Pound Sri Lankan Rupee Bangladesh Taka Philippines Peso Pakistan Rupee Bahraini Dinar UAE Dirham Saudi Riyal *Rates are subject to change

282.800 386.200 456.550 276.250 4.575 41.020 2.156 3.640 6.560 2.670 753.100 77.000 75.500



Commerzbank sees lower earnings from German companies FRANKFURT: Commerzbank said it will earn less this year from its core division that lends to Germany’s small and medium-sized companies as competition hots up to do business with the booming sector. European banks have seen the Germany’s Mittelstand, often family-owned firms producing quality engineered goods, as a potential area for profit as other areas of their business suffer from the fallout of the euro zone debt crisis and new regulations. But the companies have done so well they have built up cash reserves, reducing the need for loans from banks which are competing for a slice of the market. Commerzbank, Germany’s second-biggest lender expects profit at Mittelstandsbank, its biggest division, to decline this year, board member Markus Beumer told German business daily Boersen-Zeitung on Tuesday. “The result will

not be as good as in 2012,” he said. Analysts have forecast a 1 billion euros operating profit this year compared with the 1.65 billion it posted in 2012. Much of the forecast drop in profit is because the bank needs to set aside a normal amount of spare cash to cover for potential bad loans in 2013 after the Mittelstand’s success in 2012 allowed it to take the unusual step of reclaiming bad-loan reserves it had set aside during the financial crisis. But pressure from rivals who have launched initiatives to tap the strength of the German Mittelstand is also increasing. Competition from rivals such as Deutsche Bank, BNP Paribas or Societe Generale as well as state-owned and savings banks, will make the going tough for anybody wanting a piece of the action. “The headline news is that the Mittelstand is doing well, which is right, but it

is very difficult for creditors to make money there,” said Mittelstand expert Bernd Venohr. “Whoever enters this sector as a lender is going to struggle.” Small- and medium-sized companies form the backbone of Germany’s economy, with around 3.6 million businesses employing two of every three workers. Often family-owned, over half of the firms expect sales to rise in the second half of 2013, with many ramping up their expectations since the start of the year, according to a July study by Ernst and Young. “These companies are cash rich,” BNP Paribas Chief Executive Jean-Laurent Bonnafe said last week while in Germany to promote his bank’s push into the German corporate market. But Bonnafe sees speciality services like debtcapital management and trade services as more promising than plain lending. Commerzbank shares dropped 1.7 percent,

briefly making it the biggest loser among European banks. The shares are down more than 18 percent so far this year, compared to a 15 percent rise for the index. PROVISIONS Commerzbank will see its pretax profit plunge by two-thirds to 553 million euros this year, according to estimates from Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. “Companies are cash-rich at the moment, demand for loans is rather low and the price war among banks is increasing - but competition it is not the dominating factor here,” LBBW analyst Ingo Frommen said. In the crisis of 2009, Commerzbank put aside large sums to cover potential bad loans. As Germany came out of the recession quickly, Commerzbank benefited by writing back those provisions - but the effect is coming to

an end. “Loan loss provisions of Mittelstandsbank are still below the longterm average, and I expect them to normalize further”, said Metzler Securities analyst Guido Hoymann. Commerzbank, like other lenders, struggles to make money with deposits from corporate customers, given that central banks have pushed market rates to record lows in an effort to kick start the global economy. “Margins are squeezed to near zero, so of course, that is affecting their earnings,” Hoymann said. Analysts expect the Mittelstandsbank unit to book provisions of 350 to 400 million euros this year, up from the 30 million it booked in 2012. In the first six months of this year, Commerzbank’s Mittelstand unit saw operating earnings drop 38 percent to 542 million euros ($736 million), hit by a rise in loan loss provisions and poor lending margins.—Reuters

German exports rise Industrial orders dip 0.3 percent

MADRID: Maira Jumbo, 31 stands beside her uncle Edison Arrobo as she and her family wait to get evicted in Madrid. —AP

Unemployment remains dark spot in the Spanish economy MADRID: Spain’s government sees light at the end of the tunnel with the end to a two-year recession but analysts warn joblessness will continue to weigh down the euro-zone’s fourth-largest economy. “The deterioration of the job market has hit bottom,” Budget Minister Cristobal Montoro told public television TVE. “Spain in 2014 will be in condition to grow and create jobs.” Montoro spoke as the government said the number of registered unemployed rose in September by about 25,500 people from the previous month to reach 4.72 million as a summer jobs boom ended. But the government stressed this was the smallest increase in joblessness in the month of September since 2007. The government estimates the Spanish economy emerged this quarter from a double-dip recession brought on by the bursting of a housing bubble in 2008 and will post growth of 0.7 percent next year. But despite signs of growth, the rise in unemployment illustrates a cyclical inevitability, said Raj Badiani, an economist at IHS Global Insight in London. Retailers will continue to cut their workforces as consumers rein in spending and government austerity measures will mean further public sector job losses, he said. “Job losses continue alarmingly,” Badiani added with job seekers entering the cash economy or “leaving Spain in search of employment across the EU.” Spain’s official unemployment rate, which is calculated on a broad household survey released every three months, hit 26.26 percent in the second quarter of this year or 5.8 million people, from a record 27.16 percent in the first quarter. The government predicts the unemployment rate will drop to 25.9 percent in 2014 after ending 2013 at 26.9 percent, a forecast which most analysts see as

too rosy. “The projection for the evolution of the job market is a bit optimistic. The level of growth that is projected for next years seems insufficient,” said Jesus Castillo, economist at French investment bank Natixis in Paris. Natixis predicts the unemployment rate will stand at 26.5 percent while the International Monetary Fund sees it climbing to 27 percent and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development see it rising to 28 percent. “In theory below growth of 2.0 percent, there will be no creation of employment,” said Javier Velazquez, an economics professor at Madrid’s Complutense University. Any drop in unemployment was due in large part to foreign immigrants packing up their bags and abandoning Spain and people dropping out of the job market, he added. “The fact that unemployment fell does not mean that employment has risen. There are people who move to the category of ‘the discouraged’, who are inactive, who have not even signed up at job centres because they think it is a waste of time,” he said. Unions complain that the bulk of the jobs that are being created are on short-term contracts that offer little security. “It is true that the volume of hiring has increased a little bit. The problem is that the new contracts that are being signed are part-time and temporary, therefore they will be destroyed,” said Paloma Lopez who is in charge of employment at Spain’s largest trade union, CCOO. The Washington-based IMF has warned that Spain faces five more years with an unemployment rate topping 25 percent unless it enacts new reforms including measures to help firms slash wages instead of axing staff.—AFP

Debt ceiling showdown laced with dangerous unknowns WASHINGTON: Surely, America’s bickering politicians are not so crazed by partisan fervor that they would let the still recovering economy plunge into the catastrophic unknown of the country’s first-ever debt default? OR ARE THEY? Congress has sometimes been reluctant to lift the US statutory borrowing limit-as it must do again by October 17 - and only done so after a close vote. But it has never caused a major incident. But this routine duty has, in recent years, become another battleground in the bitter fight between President Barack Obama and his Republican foes in the House of Representatives. So far, the horrific potential consequences of not raising the debt ceiling leaving Uncle Sam with no cash to pay his bills, triggering a likely US recession and possible global economic contagionhave forced debt hawk conservatives to go along. But in shutdown Washington, with Obama and Republicans deadlocked, conventional wisdom is being tested as never before. The administration accuses the Republican Tea Party faction of “playing with fire” over its demand that Obama make concessions-for example delaying his health care law-in return for the raising of the current $16.7 trillion debt ceiling. With America just nine days away from the start of a possible default on its obligations, Obama and Republican House Speaker John Boehner are dug in deep. Relations between America’s two most powerful politicians are so laced with distrust that neither seems inclined to give the other a face-saving way out.

Obama stood firm Monday, ruling out any talks on budget issues, health care or anything else, until Boehner reopens the federal government, now shuttered for a week over a budget impasse, and raises the debt ceiling. “What we’re not willing to do is to create a permanent pattern in which, unless you get your way the government’s shut down or America defaults,” he said. “That’s not how we do business in this country, and we’re not going to start now.” Boehner hardened his own line, spinning comments by White House aide Gene Sperling to claim the president preferred default to dialogue. “A senior White House official said that the president would rather default than sit down and negotiate. Really?” Boehner said. With both sides ripping chunks from each other, the situation seems ripe for miscalculation. Some Republicans seem set on the notion that Obama, decried by some Democrats as quick to climb down in first term standoffs, will blink, rather than see his legacy sullied by a new recession. But this time seems to be different. The president, who will never face voters again, is flexing adevil-may-care streak. WILL HE GIVE WAY? No way, say White House aides, privately insisting Boehner will get no off-ramp. The creeping sense of danger from this deeply personal standoff has not yet been widely recognized outside Washington. But one key player is alarmed. China, which leads the list of nations invested deep in the supposed safety of US Treasury Bonds, cleared its throat on Monday. “The clock is ticking,” said Chinese vice finance minister Zhu Guangyao.—AFP

BERLIN: German exports rose less than hoped in August as foreign industry orders fell, adding to signs that domestic demand rather than trade activity will drive modest growth in Europe’s leading economy this year. Sales of goods and services abroad gained just 1.0 percent, Federal Statistics Office data showed yesterday, prompting a German trade group to slash its forecast for full-year export growth. “We can’t achieve 3 percent growth anymore. We now expect ... growth of less than one percent,” Anton Boerner, the president of the BGA trade association, told Reuters, citing weakness in a slew of foreign markets. Exports have been the cornerstone of the German economy in recent decades. But yesterday’s news strengthened expectations that domestic demand, rather than trade, will drive growth this year, helped by a strong labor market, solid wage hikes and favorable financing conditions - good news for Germany’s euro-zone neighbors. That picture was reinforced by economy ministry data showing industrial orders dipped 0.3 percent in August from July, also weaker than expected and driven by a 2.1 percent fall in foreign orders while domestic orders rose 2.2 percent. The ministry said the sharp rise in German demand for capital goods suggested investment activity, which has been weighing on growth, was reviving. The 1.0 percent rise in exports - outpacing an even more meager 0.4 percent gain in imports missed the consensus forecast of 1.5 percent in a Reuters poll. Exports had unexpectedly fallen in

July. “The (trade) data suggest that the recovery continues, but there is not that much momentum,” said Holger Sandte at Nordea. “It confirmed effectively that foreign trade will not provide much of a boost, unlike private consumption.” Germany’s economy, which steamed ahead during the early years of the euro- zone crisis, weakened last year but bounced back in the second quarter of 2013. Economists generally expect slower but solid growth in the JulySeptember period. WEAKNESS BEYOND EUROPE TOO Christian Schulz at Berenberg Bank noted that while August’s export figures showed a pickup, data for the first months of the year showed that exports were lower than in 2012. “Especially weak were exports to the euro-zone, and this is where you see the impact of the recession,” he said. A breakdown of yesterday’s unadjusted data showed shipments to the euro-zone, where Germany sends 40 percent of exports, dropping 4.1 percent on the year in August. They were down 3.1 percent on the year in the first eight months of 2013. Germany continues to outpace peers within the currency bloc, which is struggling with its debt crisis. Earlier yesterday, the Bank of France cut its forecast for third quarter growth to 0.1 percent, while figures showed Spain’s industrial output fell for the 24th straight month. But exports to outside Europe were down even more in August on the year, dropping 7.2

percent, underscoring how sluggish global trade has failed this year to compensate for weak demand from the euro-zone. “Global trade remains off-color, which is putting the brakes on German exports,” said Thomas Gitzel at VP Bank. “ The outlook for the coming months is much more promising. Important freight indicators have risen considerably.” Germany ’s BDI industr y group last month slashed its forecast for expor t growth to between 1.5 and 2 percent from a previous estimate of 3.5 percent due to weakness in emerging markets. The BDI said that while there were signs that the European economy was recovering and growth in the United States was stronger than expected, this was not sufficient to offset the current weak ness of emerging markets. Yesterday’s data showing imports down 1.4 percent on the year in the first eight months of 2013 suggests that domestic demand might not provide as much of a boost to Germany’s neighbors as hoped for nor contribute much to reducing euro-zone imbalances. The trade surplus widened more than expected in August to 15.6 billion euros from an upwardly revised 15 billion euros. Imbalance between the euro-zone’s two top economies may however be shrinking. France’s Trade Minister Nicole Bricq said the trade deficit in August had narrowed slightly to 4.9 billion euros from the previous month, describing the rise as a positive trend that would carr y through to year-end. — Reuters

Cuban merchants defy ban on sale of imported clothes HAVANA: Privately-owned small retailers in communist Cuba are defying a government order to stop selling imported clothing or face stiff fines. Imported clothing is in high demand in Cuba because foreign apparel is cheaper and of higher quality than threads sold in state-run stores. “We have been here for three years selling without a problem and abiding by the law, and now they say that this is over?” asked Nadia Martinez, 32. “We are not going to close our business.” Martinez has a government license to work as a seamstress, but in practice runs a modestly successful business selling imported clothes on Galiano Street, one of Havana’s busiest commercial avenues. The clothes are not imported by the government, but rather brought in by Cubans traveling to places like Ecuador, Mexico, Spain and the United States. Until now, the government had seemed to look the other way as she stretched the scope of her legal employment. But it now appears it may regulate away her economic success story. In 2010 President Raul Castro expanded the list of government-approved self-employment occupations as part of a very gradual reform of its Soviet-style economy. Castro announced that over the following years he would also be slashing the country’s five-million strong bureaucracy-this on an island with a population of about 11 million-as a cost-cutting measure. Today more than 430,000 Cubans work for themselves or in small businesses. Authorized job categories include restaurant owners, barbers, electricians, plumbers, mechanics and other skilled trades. Privately owned beauty salons and familyowned restaurants known as “paladares” proliferated, often operating from the back of people’s houses. The government, however, remains the country’s largest employer, and central planners still try to control the cash-strapped economy. Deputy Labor Minister Marta Elena Feito recently announced that the government would fine businesses and people found selling imported apparel or re-selling clothing that originated in state-run stores. Authorities have long tolerated the clothing vendors, and even though Feito said the measures would be enforced “immediately,” no vendor has been forced to shut down. “We’re waiting for them to come explain the unexplainable to us, because closing us down cannot be a solution,” said Ledibeth Sanchez, 29, another Galiano Street vendor. A few blocks away Carlos Medina, 44, works at the “Fashion Passions” boutique on Dragones Street. The well-stocked store sells jeans, blouses, T-shirts and imported dresses. “Everything was going very well and suddenly they change it all,” said Medina. He said vendors and store employees are fretting about being potentially being forced to shutter. “Nobody has notified us, but if they give us the order to close, we’ll close,” he said in a resigned tone. Omara Cambas, 46, a former Communist Youth national leader, opened the “Catwalk Workshop” clothing boutique in the Havana neighborhood of El Vedado just three months ago. “This measure would affect us a lot-the fact is, I’d be without work,” said Cambas. A key reason so many people have joined the ranks of self-employed-aside from state job cuts-is that state salaries average around $20 a month. Though people may not have to pay for housing here, that is not enough for most to put food on the table for their families or buy clothing. Castro, 82, took over from his ailing older brother Fidel in 2006 and has chosen not to dramatically open up Cuba’s economic or political system. Fidel Castro led the nation through five decades of Cold War strains with the neighboring United States. Raul Castro has sought to liberalize Cuba’s socialist economy a bit and encourage more private entrepreneurship, but at the same time maintain a key role for the Cuban state through joint ventures. Since 1962, Cuba has been under a full US trade embargo. But US goods routinely move through third countries or are resold by people traveling into Cuba.— AFP

WASHINGTON: Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) (2nd left) speaks to the media while flanked by House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) (right), Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) (2nd right), and Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers after a meeting with House Republicans at the US Capitol yesterday. — AFP

What default? US Republicans downplay impact of debt limit WASHINGTON: The Obama administration says a US default would be “catastrophic.” Economists say it could plunge the country into recession and prompt a global financial meltdown. To many Republicans, however, the prospect of the world’s lone superpower juggling its bills doesn’t seem so bad. The government could muddle through without a debt-ceiling increase as long as it kept up with interest payments and a few other priorities, they argue. “We are not going to default on the public debt. That doesn’t mean that we have to pay every bill the day it comes in,” Republican Representative Joe Barton of Texas said on CNBC on Monday. Barton’s position could reflect a genuine disagreement with warnings by Wall Street and Washington analysts or he could be downplaying the default to gain tactical advantage in negotiations with President Barack Obama. But Barton isn’t an outlier. Nearly every Republican in the House of Representatives voted for a bill in May that would direct the Treasury Department to prioritize bond payments and Social Security retiree benefits over other obligations if Congress failed to extend its borrowing authority. In the Senate, 29 of the chamber’s 44 Republicans have signed on to the idea. Republicans say that approach would minimize the fallout if Congress fails to raise the debt ceiling before the Treasury Department exhausts its borrowing authority on Oct 17. Past and present Treasury officials and Wall Street analysts reject that view out of hand as naive at best. In order to make sure bond payments and Social Security checks went out on time, the government would have to delay other payments by days or weeks. That would send a massive economic shockwave through military contractors, hospitals, and other entities farther down the priority list. The plan also may not be workable in a

practical sense. The US Treasury handles 4 million transactions a day, and separating some of them out would be practically impossible. “It’s mind-boggling. I don’t know what to say,” said Tony Fratto, a Republican and a former Treasury Department official under President George W Bush. “Every member of Congress should know this. These aren’t complicated concepts.” That may not be the point. By presenting a plan to deal with a possible default, Republican lawmakers can show voters they are taking steps to minimize any potential fallout. And as the Oct 17 deadline approaches, they may gain a negotiating advantage by showing Democrats they are not particularly afraid of going right up to the edge - or over it. “It’s a strategy to say, ‘We can hold out longer, because we don’t think it’s so bad,’” said New York University political science professor Steven Brams, who has written extensively about strategic decision-making. With the government entering its second week of a partial shutdown due to a dispute over Obama’s healthcare law, business leaders are warning against further brinkmanship. The US Chamber of Commerce has called for a “clean” debt ceiling increase, without any other legislation attached, while financial executives like Lloyd Blankfein of Goldman Sachs have urged the lawmakers to resolve the dispute quickly. The uncertainty has weighed on financial markets. The CBOE Volatility index .VIX - a measure of market turbulence called the “fear index” - has risen by nearly 50 percent over the past three weeks amid fear of a default and anxiety over a related government shutdown that took effect on Oct 1. “With each passing day, the market becomes more restless,” said Leo Grohowski, chief investment officer at BNY Mellon Wealth Management in New York.—Reuters



Al-Babtain opens new Nissan Service, Parts centre KUWAIT: In line with its plans to expand its reach and services in Kuwait, Abdulmohsen Abdulaziz Al-Babtain Co, the exclusive distributor of Nissan cars in Kuwait, officially inaugurated its new Nissan Service and Parts Centre in AlArdhiya industrial area on September 25th, 2013. The event was attended by top officials of Al-Babtain Group and distinguished guests from Nissan Gulf FZCo. Dubai, including Aftersales Director, David Graves, General Manager, Prashant Malhotra and Regional Service Manager , Surendra Acharya. In front of a large gathering of officials, customers and media representatives, Khaled Al Babtain Chairman of Al-Babtain Group, Mohammed Shalaby, Chief Operating Officer of Al-Babtain Group with some of the board members, and Davd Graves, inaugurated the facility by cutting the ribbon and leading guests on a guided tour of the new Nissan Service & Parts centre where they showcased the vast array of services offered. While welcoming the guests, Khaled AlBabtain, highlighted the commitment of AlBabtain Group towards meeting customer demands and fulfilling their growing automotive needs. He further added that the new facility in Al-Ardhiya is equipped with the latest tools and equipment’s and is managed by well-experienced and Nissan trained staff members. He finally emphasized that this new facility is yet another addition to the existing network of 7 Nissan Service Centers and 13 Nissan Parts outlets around Kuwait. This Nissan Centre fits, Al Babtain group’s philosophy to offer easy access, ease of reach and ample parking for their Service & parts location in Aftersales network. He was happy to announce that “With the addition of new Nissan Service & parts facility in Al Ardhiya, I am happy to note that today Al Babtain group have the largest number of after sales Service & Parts locations amongst any other automotive distributor in the Kuwaiti automotive market.” Mohammed Shalaby, praised this new achievement of Al-Babtain Group adding that the success achieved was mainly due to the joint efforts put in by its ambitious After-Sales team who is constantly in the process of adopting efficient plans to satisfy all its customers’ needs and expectations. National Service Manager of AlBabtain Group, Rauf Mohammed, added that customers will be pleased to avail the 60 min-

Khalid Al Babtain utes-express service in Al Ardhiya with the addition of this new facility. On his part, National Parts Manager of AlBabtain Group, Ruwan Wickramasinghe, was happy to announce that many fleet customers will now be able to quickly reach the new Nissan Service and Parts Center in Al-Ardhiya for their parts requirements. Commenting on this special event, After-sales Director of Nissan Gulf FZCo, David Graves said: “We are all praise for AlBabtain Group for its continuous improvements and investments to meet customer demands.” He further added that Nissan-Al Babtain has received many awards for its outstanding Customer Service and has earned the highest level of customers’ loyalty by providing Nissan customers with automotive parts and accessories at affordable and competitive prices. The opening of this new center proves the company’s assertive expansion plan and reflects its commitment to maintaining its place at the forefront of importing, marketing and supporting world renowned brands in Kuwait. Abdulmohsen Abdulaziz Al-Babtain Co. is the second oldest distributor of Nissan cars outside Japan., and as the authorized dealer of Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. in Kuwait company has been honoured and awarded in recognition of its outstanding performance in Sales, Marketing, Aftersales Service, Spare Parts and Customer service for its overall performance amongst Nissan agents across the world.

Khalid Al Babtain and David Graves inaugurating the new branch.

US deadlock fears weigh on shares Dollar edges off near 8-month low LONDON: Faint signs of movement on the fiscal standoff in Washington helped lift the dollar off an eight-month low yesterday, but fears it could result in a US debt default weighed on world shares and oil. A White House spokesman said on Monday it would accept a short-term increase in the nation’s borrowing authority to avoid a default. An influential senator was also said to be floating a plan to cut federal spending and reform the US tax code as part of a broader deal. As the partial US government shutdown enters a second week, most investors still believe Republicans and Democrats can reach deals on the budget and the debt ceiling. But worries they may fail were beginning to grow. “In our opinion markets are a little too complacent. The downside risks are horrendous if there is no resolution and the debt ceiling is breached,” said Kevin Corrigan, head of credit at Lombard Odier Investment Managers. Banks and investors outside the US were also moving yesterday to ensure a steady supply of dollars to cover the critical midOctober period when the government hits the borrowing limit, paying sharply higher premiums in the forward foreign exchange market. All the uncertainty kept the MSCI world equity index , which tracks shares in 45 countries, within a narrow range with US stock index futures pointing to a mixed start when trading on Wall Street opens later. The stability of riskier assets in the face of the potential threat of a US debt default, which would spark massive turmoil on global financial markets, though has encouraged some investors to expect a big relief rally if a deal gets done. “I’m prepared to step out at any time should it come crashing down, but for the moment I’m still betting on the upside,” said Andreas Clenow, hedge fund trader and principal of Zurich-based ACIES Asset Management. “Equities have held up remarkably well given what’s going on. If that’s not a strong sign, I don’t know what is.” Brent crude oil, another asset seen as a riskier investment, edged above its recent range of $109-$110 to $110.35 a barrel , although analysts said it could be gaining from the withdrawal of financial investors who wanted to sell. “Oil is still doing surprisingly well, given the ongoing budget crisis in the US, the approach of the debt ceiling and mounting supplies,” said a Commerzbank research note. “Nevertheless, we suspect that the latest show of strength on the part of oil is only

temporary.” European equities traded lower after ending in negative territory for three of the last four trading sessions. The broad FTSE Eurofirst 300 index dipped 0.5 percent by midday. Earlier MSCI’s broadest index of AsiaPacific shares outside Japan reversed losses to gain 0.4 percent, helped by a sharp rise in Chinese stocks on their first trading day in a week after the National Day holidays. DOLLAR VULNERABLE The dollar saw the main benefit from the signs lawmakers were taking steps to try to end the deadlock, gaining 0.5 percent against the perceived safety of the yen to hit 97.20 yen. Though this only took place after the greenback had dropped to 96.55 yen, its lowest since Aug 12. The dollar index, which measures the US currency’s value against a basket of currencies, was still within striking distance of last week’s eight-month low of 79.627 and traders said it remained vulnerable to further selling. The longer the political deadlock runs, the greater the expected economic damage and the more likely it becomes that the Federal Reserve will continue for longer a stimulus program that has flooded global markets with dollars. America’s biggest creditors, China and Japan, have also said they are increasingly worried that the developments in Washington could wreak havoc on their trillions of dollars of investments in US Treasury bonds. “The risk is to the downside for the dollar as long as we don’t have an agreement,” said Niels Christensen, currency strategist at Nordea. GOLD GAINS The US anxiety - and a broadly softer dollar - has helped support gold, which extended gains into a second day yesterday to trade up 0.2 percent at $1,318 an ounce. Gold also gained support from Chinese buyers returning after a week-long holidays. China is the world’s second-biggest gold consumer after India. The worries over the US fiscal impasse largely overshadowed data from China showing business confidence in the countries services sector had slipped in September though the economy remained on course for expansion. Copper, which is very sensitive to Chinese data due to the country’s heavy demand for the metal, was slightly firmer, up 0.2 percent at $7,260 a ton, though within the $7,000-$7,500 a ton range seen since early August. — Reuters



London black taxis turn white for Australia LONDON: The iconic black London cab is to hit the streets in Australia for the first time-though the taxis have been painted white to cope with the Antipodean heat. A shipment of 98 TX4s has been unloaded in Perth for a four-year trial in the west coast city, the first of 200 heading Down Under, manufacturers The London Taxi Company said. The taxis will be plying for hire in Perth, the capital of Western Australia, later this month. “They’re white, which is probably better in a hot climate, but they are also specifically hot-climate vehicles. They have different ventilation to make sure they don’t overheat,” a spokeswoman for The London Taxi Company said. The taxis sent to Perth are ex-demonstration models. In a publicly-funded package, the city’s cabbies will have their normal weekly licence fee waived for the first four years of running them-meaning they will recoup almost the full vehicle cost-if they take up the TX4. “The response has been phenomenal,” said Evan Simeon, who heads the company’s operations in Australia. “One Perth operator who purchased a fleet of 50 bright white, used TX4s has already had a stampede of drivers who want to be the first ones to buy a cab and partake in the trial. “What has been especially gratifying are the offers from expat London taxi drivers who not only want to

buy one, but have also offered their services to train our Australian drivers on everything from the service to vehicle operation.” The manufacturer was rescued from administration earlier this year by Chinese automaker Zhejiang Geely Holding Group. The company has two factories: one at Coventry in central England for the domestic British market, and one in Shanghai for worldwide sales. The Perth cabs were shipped from the Chinese commercial hub. He said a new, intensive driver training course would be implemented in Perth, similar to “The Knowledge”-the methods London cab drivers use to remember every street in the city and work out routes between them. “It is integral to the entire propositiona TX4 is nothing without a professional driver behind the wheel,” said Matthew Cheyne, international sales director for The London Taxi Company. The firm claims their vehicles are the only cars in the world designed specifically for use as cabs. They have a 25-foot turning circle and retain much of their original 1948 design. There are now London taxis operating in 60 countries including Germany, Bahrain, Kosovo and Lebanon, though some only in very small numbers. There are 1,000 purple ones in Azerbaijan, while Saudi Arabia has 400 on order — 200 black and 200 in an assortment of colors. — AFP

FREMANTLE: An undated handout picture shows London taxis painted white at the Fremantle Port in western Australia. — AFP

Qatar National Bank misses Q3 forecasts QNB records 14.3% profit jump

MUMBAI: An Indian pedestrian waits for a bus next to an advertisement of the worldís cheapest car Tata Nano in Mumbai. Indiaís top vehicle maker Tata Motors launched yesterday, a more fuel-efficient version of the worldís cheapest car, as it struggles to reverse a sharp slump in sales of the hatchback. — AFP

India car sales down NEW DELHI: India’s car sales fell nearly five percent year-on-year in the first half of the financial year due to the weak economy, the steepest drop in a decade, data showed yesterday. The figures from the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) indicated the oncebooming sector is on track for a second year of declining sales. “We’ll be lucky if we start coming close to zero growth in passenger car sales,” SIAM president Vikram Kirloskar told reporters. September car sales grew 0.7 percent year-on-year to 156,018 units. But sales for the six months since April plunged by 4.67 percent, the sharpest drop since the first half of 2002-03 when sales shrank by 6.96 percent. “Until we see good economic growth, people will be cautious and take fewer risks,” Kirloskar said. SIAM initially expected passenger car sales to grow by up to three percent this year to March 2014 but it has since said it expects negative growth. Carmakers hope the religious festival season, swinging into high gear, may bring more buyers as it is seen as an auspicious time to purchase. They are ramping up special offers. But analysts say even the festive season could produce disappointing results. Some analysts expect

economic growth this year as low as 3.7 percent, down from five percent last year. “Even if we have a good festive season I don’t think the sector has bottomed out,” Deepesh Rathore, director of Emerging Markets Automotive Advisors said. “With the weak economy, high inflation and high interest rates, the car-buying customer does not think it’s the right time to buy.” Car sales contracted for the first time in a decade last year, in contrast to previous years which posted annual growth of 20 to 30 percent. Those boom years prompted foreign automakers to make a beeline for India as they sought to boost sales globally. Underscoring overall economic weakness, sales of medium and heavy commercial vehicle slumped by 25 percent in the first half from a year earlier. SIAM’s Kirloskar estimated overcapacity in the passenger car and commercial vehicle sectors at as high as 30 percent. India’s rupee has tumbled this year against the dollar, a boost for car exporters, but the currency fall has piled extra costs on an industry depending on many imported raw materials. Kirloskar said carmakers will likely press ahead with already announced investments but may hold back on new ones until the economy recovers. — AFP

Vodafone to boost stake in Indian unit LONDON: Vodafone intends to increase its stake in its Indian subsidiary after the country cleared foreign companies to take full ownership of local carriers, a source familiar with the groupís plans said on Monday. The British company is set to seek approval in the coming weeks from the Indian governmentís Foreign Investment Promotion Board to buy stakes from minority partners, the source said, adding that it has yet to decide if it will buy out all par tners. Vodafone declined to comment when asked if it will increase its stake in Vodafone India. The cost of buying out minority shareholders could be as much as $2 billion. Vodafone, which entered India in 2007 by acquiring Hutchison Whampoaís local cellular assets in an $11 billion deal, directly and indirectly owns a combined 84.5 percent of Vodafone India, the countryís secondbiggest telecoms company by users. In August India relaxed rules on foreign holdings in the sector to allow companies such as Vodafone to own up to 100 percent of their Indian businesses. Before the rule change foreign companies were limited to direct stakes of no more than 74 percent in Indian carriers. Up to three foreign direct investment proposals in the telecoms sector are ìjust around the cornerî after the

rule change, Indian finance minister P Chidambarm said on Monday, without naming any company. Indiaís Piramal Enterprises owns about 11 percent of Vodafone India. The remainder is owned by investors including Indian businessman Analjit Singh, Vodafone Indiaís non-executive chairman. Vodafone has an agreement to buy Piramalís 11 percent stake for 83 billion rupees ($1.3 billion) if an initial public offering of Vodafone India does not happen by February 2014, the British company said in its latest annual report. Piramal, which bought the stake after Vodafone and its former Indian partner Essar Group parted ways, has said it is a financial investment with assured returns. Piramal could sell the stake in 2014, its chairman Ajay Piramal said in May. Going by the valuation agreed for the Piramal stake, the total minority stake in Vodafone India would be wor th $1.9 billion, according to Reuters calculations. Vodafone is the biggest corporate investor in India, but it has encountered numerous challenges, from the high cost of radiowave spectrum to a continuing $2 billion-plus tax dispute. The Financial Times reported on Monday that Vodafone would file an application this month with Indian authorities to seek clearance to buy the minority stakes in Vodafone India. — Reuters

DUBAI: Qatar National Bank (QNB), the largest listed lender in the Gulf Arab region, posted a 14.3 percent jump in third-quarter net profit yesterday, according to Reuters calculations, missing analystsí forecasts. QNB, which completed the purchase of a majority stake in Societe Generaleís Egyptian arm for $2 billion in March, posted a net profit of 2.4 billion riyals ($659 million) for the three months to Sept. 30, compared with 2.1 billion riyals a year earlier. Nine analysts, on average, forecast a net profit of 2.5 billion riyals in a Reuters poll. QNB, whose results are generally seen as a bellwether for the sectorís performance in the country, said in a statement its ninemonth net profit was 7.1 billion riyals, an increase of 14.1 percent over the same period last year. The higher profit was supported by strong asset growth - with total assets at the end of September up 24.5 percent year-on-

year - which, in turn, was boosted by a 27.4 percent increase in loans and advances. Lending growth in the Gulf Arab state has been a key driver of bank profits in recent quarters as the country pours billions of dollars into infrastructure projects, such as electricity and water generation and transportation, in a development push and ahead of its hosting of the 2022 soccer world cup. While growth in total bank credit dipped to a 27month low in August, it still increased by 13.6 percent year-on-year, according to central bank data. QNBís deposit base at the end of September stood at 331 billion riyals, up 23.3 percent on the same point of 2012. The lender, which is 50-percent owned by sovereign wealth fund Qatar Investment Authority, named Ali Al-Kuwari as acting chief executive of the bank in July after Ali Shareef Al-Emadi, the previous incumbent, was named chairman of its board of directors.

Emadi was appointed finance minister following a cabinet reshuffle in the Gulf Arab state at the end of June following the ascension of Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani as Emir of Qatar. QNB has been on an expansion spree in the past two years, snapping up stakes in regional lenders as it seeks to build an emerging market franchise with the backing of its gas-rich government. The bank wants its international business to contribute around 40 percent of profit and 45 percent of total assets by 2017, Chief Financial Officer Ramzi Mari said in December, up from around 17 percent and 30 percent prior to the National Societe Generale Bank transaction. Its capital adequacy ratio stood at 14.6 percent on Sept. 30, with the bank ìkeen to maintain a strong capitalization in order to support future strategic plans,î the statement said. — Reuters

Turkish bond yields dip Bonds bolstered by strong auction demand ISTANBUL: Turkish bond yields fell yesterday amid strong demand for a series of government debt auctions while stocks were broadly flat, awaiting a resolution of the US debt deadlock. The 10-year benchmark yield fell to 8.84 percent from 8.94 percent at Mondayís close, while the two-year yield fell below 8 percent from 8.28 percent. The Treasury is due to issue a new two-year benchmark bond maturing later, as well as a 10-year fixed-coupon bond maturing in September 2023. It will also tap its floatingrate note maturing in 2020. Two government debt auctions on Monday also drew strong demand. A standoff continued yesterday in the United States Congress that

has shut down the federal government and could push the worldís biggest economy to the edge of defaulting on its sovereign debt. While some argued the impasse caused investors to move out of riskier assets, others said it boosted Turkish and other emerging markets because it made an imminent reduction in the Federal Reserveís bond buying program less likely. ìForeign investors may be willing to tap the new auction bonds with a short trading strategy, taking advantage of the lower inflation figure for October and the resulting capital gains,î said Erkan Dernek, market strategist at Odeabank. The improved sentiment in Turkish bond markets was not enough to lift stocks.

Istanbulís main share index was down 0.16 percent at 75,788.49 points, underperforming emerging market peers which were up 0.38 percent. The government is due to announce its latest economic outlook for the next three years later, and is expected to revise down its growth target for next year to 4 percent from 5 percent due to risk factors tied to capital outflows. Data earlier showed industrial production fell in August from a year ago, its first such decline since December and defying expectations of a rise. The lira weakened slightly to 1.9933 against the US currency by 0828 GMT, from 1.9905 late on Monday. — Reuters

Brent rises above $110; demand outlook cloudy US weekly crude stockpiles up LONDON: Brent crude oil rose above $110 a barrel yesterday, although gains were likely to be short-lived given an improved oil supply outlook and cloudy prospects for demand due to the US budget crisis. Analysts said oil could be gaining from the withdrawal of most financial investors who wanted to sell. Upward pressure on Brent is expected to ease as the supply of North Sea crude that underpins the benchmark is set to reach a 2013 high in November, according to loading programs. “Oil is still doing surprisingly well, given the ongoing budget crisis in the US, the approach of the debt ceiling and mounting supplies,” said a Commerzbank research note. “Nevertheless, we suspect that the latest show of strength on the part of oil is only temporary, and still see downside risks in view of the factors mentioned above.” Brent was up 62 cents at $110.30 a barrel at 1004 GMT. US oil was up 67 cents at $103.70. Concern continued to linger that the US government shutdown would cut demand for oil and hurt consumer confidence. JPMorgan economists estimate that every week of shutdown translates to a 0.12 percent reduction in the US quarterly annualised GDP growth rate. President Barack Obama said on Monday he would accept a short-term increase in the nation’s borrowing authority to avoid a default. The comment came one week into the government shutdown and only 10 days from a critical deadline to raise the country’s debt ceiling. Oil production in the US Gulf of Mexico was ramping up towards normal on Monday after

Tropical Storm Karen faltered off the Gulf Coast. Storm warnings had prompted energy firms to shut nearly two-thirds of oil output as of Saturday. US commercial crude oil inventories are meanwhile forecast to have risen 1.4

million barrels in the week ended Oct 4, a Reuters survey of six analysts showed. The US Energy Information Administration is expected to release its data on Wednesday at 1430 GMT, despite the government shutdown. — Reuters

KABUL: Afghan money changers share a light moment as they wait for customers at the currency exchange market in downtown Kabul yesterday. Some nine million Afghans or 36 percent of the population are living in ìabsolute povertyî while another 37 percent live barely above the poverty line, according to a UN report. — AFP



The education of China’s oil company US uproar doomed CNOOC’s attempt to buy Unocal HONG KONG: Yang Hua was a rising star at Chinese oil giant CNOOC Ltd back in 2005. Then, the 44-year-old chief financial officer participated in one of corporate China’s biggest belly flops ever. Yang helped CNOOC , the publicly listed arm of state-owned China National Offshore Oil Corp, craft an $18.5 billion bid for Unocal Corp of Los Angeles. It turned into a debacle. Political opposition exploded in Washington, where the company had done little preparation. At home in Beijing, some board members revolted after being blindsided by the bid, and some of China’s leaders were said to be queasy. CNOOC stood down and Unocal was sold to a rival, Chevron Corp. Seven years later, Yang appeared to triumph. On February 26, CNOOC closed China’s largest foreign acquisition in modern Chinese history: the $15.1 billion all-cash takeover of Calgary-based Nexen Inc. The deal caused far less rancor than the aborted Unocal effort, and it was a landmark, touted in China as foreshadowing a bigger global role for the state-owned giants that dominate the world’s second-largest economy. At a small briefing for reporters from the official Chinese media the next day, CNOOC Vice Chairman Yang Hua smiled broadly and said: “I slept like a log last night.” CNOOC had demonstrated that China’s state-owned enterprises can play on the world stage, said one banker involved in the deal. “They learn from their mistakes and don’t repeat them,” the banker said. “In terms of the process, the Nexen deal was very smooth, and Yang was the key to that.” But as deftly as it was done, it is now anything but clear that the Nexen acquisition was wise for CNOOC’s constituents - the Chinese government and shareholders in the publicly traded company. As one company insider told Reuters: “For CNOOC, the closing of the deal marked the end of euphoria, and the beginning of pain.” The central problem, analysts say, is that in a global energy industry transformed by the shale gas revolution in North America and elsewhere, CNOOC overpaid. And it underestimated the risks of monetizing the landlocked oilsands and shale-gas assets in Canada

that account for 75 percent of Nexen’s proven and probable reserves. The deal may be emblematic in a different way than its boosters think. Critics of China’s decade-long overseas resource-buying binge believe state-owned companies have wasted huge chunks of the money - because deals were done for political, not commercial, reasons. Since 2005, CNOOC and other Chinese state-owned enterprises such as PetroChina and Sinopec Group, parent of Asia’s largest oil refiner Sinopec Corp, have poured more than $30 billion into the acquisitions of Canadian hydrocarbon reserves, mostly oil sands, making them a top energy investor in the country. “Going global,” said a Chinese official involved in overseas oil projects, had become a “political task for state oil companies and a key metric to gauge the performance of top bosses.” The question is whether “going global” profitably also counts. Resource projects accounted for most of the $380 billion of total Chinese outbound investment as of the end of 2011, according to China’s Ministry of Commerce. Losses on China’s overseas investments had reached almost $27 billion, official media reported last year, citing an estimate by analysts at an industry conference in Beijing. Yang has repeatedly said in the past that the deal was “commercially driven.” A spokesperson told Reuters the company remains confident it paid a competitive price for Nexen and its value would be realized in time, a view shared by some energy stock analysts in Hong Kong. THE LONG GAME Nexen had been on Yang Hua’s radar for seven years, almost from the day the Unocal deal fell apart, Yang Hua had said. CNOOC had identified Canada’s enormous oil sands - thick, bituminous oil that traded at a steep discount to lighter crudes - as a strategic opportunity to boost its international reserve base. The company could also reap a big technology dividend for CNOOC and China. The experience of operating a major oilsands project for the first time will give Beijing the expertise to tap its own potentially huge reserves of heavy oil, industry analysts say.

By 2011, Yang made the company’s first move in Nexen’s direction. By then the CEO of CNOOC, Yang paid $2.1 billion for a bankrupt Canadian oil producer - Opti Canada Inc - whose main asset was an Alberta oil-sands development called Long Lake. Its partner in the project: Nexen. Over the next year, CNOOC developed an operational relationship with Nexen. The companies worked to overcome the technical challenges of developing the Long Lake reserves, which caused cost overruns and production delays. At the same time, CNOOC mounted a “soft power” operation. Its executives made it a point to get to know important officials and politicians in Canada - a step that had been notably absent in the failed Unocal deal. In February of last year, Yang was encouraged by a visit to Beijing by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Harper made it clear Canada wanted to sell more oil and gas to China. With surging crude imports accounting for nearly 60 percent of oil consumption, China was keen to court Canada, which sits on the world’s third-largest oil reserves after Venezuela, as a key supply source. Half of China’s oil imports come from the volatile Middle East via the Malacca Strait. On the morning of Feb 8, 2012, CNOOC chairman Wang Yilin met with Canadian Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver, who was in Harper’s delegation, at CNOOC’s oil barrel-shaped headquarters. Wang expressed interest in expanding CNOOC’s footprint in Canada’s oil and gas industry, and Oliver welcomed the idea, according to CNOOC officials. Yang sensed the political atmosphere was increasingly favorable for CNOOC, the officials said. He was ready to go. Yang had developed a relationship with Nexen’s chairman, Barr y Jackson. According to Nexen, Jackson became aware that February that a Chinese state-controlled oil company was interested in making an acquisition offer for his company. Yang first floated the possibility of a deal in a meeting with him in Vancouver on May 17 of last year. Nexen’s board rejected the offer as too low, but made it clear the door was still open for a higher bid. Yang was still

interested. By the early summer of 2012, Yang had developed a new morning routine, according to a CNOOC official with knowledge of the matter. The first thing he did before climbing out of bed every morning was check on Nexen’s stock price. On July 3, CNOOC made a second offer for Nexen that was again rejected by Nexen’s board. On July 10, Yang, with the CNOOC board’s approval, flew to London to meet Jackson again, this time to make an offer representing a 61 percent premium to Nexen’s share price. Jackson said he thought his board would approve and took the offer back to them, according to people familiar with the negotiations. Yang didn’t want to take any chances, these people said. He told the Nexen chief that CNOOC would commit to retaining the entire Nexen staff, while basing CNOOC’s North American and Central American operations in Calgary, among other promises. On July 23, he had a deal. Nexen’s shareholders unanimously agreed to the $27.50 per share offer on September 20, and the transaction formally closed five months later. Since then, problems with the economics of the acquisition, which had been intensifying as closing day drew near, have grown apparent. RESERVES TO NOWHERE The process of turning Nexen’s oil sands into crude oil in western Canada is technically challenging, using horizontal wells and steam to extract the bitumen, oil industry executives say. For now, production at Long Lake accounts for just over one tenth of Nexen’s overall production. CNOOC says it is seeking “new technology” to overcome the complex geology. It is not yet clear, industry analysts say, where that technology will come from. “Long Lake is one of the key assets that is going to have to perform better for the Nexen acquisition to make financial sense over the long term,” said Lysle Brinker, director of Energy Equity Research for IHS. “If Long Lake does not improve, the Nexen deal will be very challenged.” Further complicating Yang’s life since the acquisition: The economics for Nexen’s already-developed tar sands

reserves have deteriorated. Benchmark prices for Canadian heavy oil - known as Western Canada Select always trade at a discount to West Texas Intermediate ( W TI), the benchmark crude in North America. But since the deal, the price of Canadian heavy has been extraordinarily volatile. At its low, it plunged to more than $40 below WTI, caused in part by soaring oil-sands production and shale-oil output from the US Bakken field, which straddles the USCanadian border. WTI has steadily held above $100 throughout the year, thanks in part to tensions in the Middle East. Pessimism now hangs over the oilsands sector. Hugh Hopewell, senior analyst at energy consultancy Wood Mackenzie, says the volatility of Canadian oil prices should remain for the rest of the decade. He saw a 40 percent discount to WTI as the long-term price assumption to evaluate bitumen projects. Getting the product to market presents a further challenge. One option is to use the Keystone pipeline south to the United States. But to the irritation of both Canadian and Chinese oil executives, US President Barack Obama’s administration has still not given the go-ahead to build the US leg of the pipeline. Another option is a pipeline to Canada’s west coast, where both Nexen’s oil and liquefied natural gas could be exported to China and other growth markets in Asia. But the difficulties there are enormous and increasing. Environmental groups and native communities in Canada are opposed. It would be hugely expensive: One study shows a pipeline from Nexen’s fields in Alberta province to the Pacific Coast would cost $6 billion. The United States has already jump-started a plan to export LNG to Asia. And it won’t be long before China produces its own shale gas - it has the world’s largest reserves. For all of these reasons, oil industry executives told Reuters, several companies operating in western Canada have tried to shed assets in the region, only to find little to no demand for them. Several major auctions this year, including a sale of a multi-billion dollar oil-sands stake by ConocoPhillips , have been called off, investment bankers said.—Reuters

APICORP advances investment diversification with acquisition

Jumeirah Golf Estates to introduce Phase 2 of Fireside Community villas DUBAI: Jumeirah Golf Estates (JGE), a luxury residential golf community located between Green Community and Dubai Sports City off Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road, has announced that it will roll out the second phase of its Fireside Community Villas at Cityscape Global 2013. Aside from introducing the latest batch of 19 exclusive units in the Fireside Community, JGE will also announce the handover of the first phase of its Whispering Pines Villas at the Middle East’s largest international business-to-business real estate development and investment exhibition taking place from October 8 to 10, 2013 at the Dubai World Trade Center. JGE will also announce the progress of ongoing developments and exclusive villa inventories as well as offer plots in the Wild Flower District where buyers can build their dream home around a golf course. The handover of the first villa at Whispering Pines took place on October 7, 2013 to coincide with the company’s participation at Cityscape. The Fireside Community is part of JGE’s Fire Zone which also includes Orange Lake, Sienna Lakes, Sienna Views, Juniper Way, Valencia Grove and Flame Tree Ridge

East and West residential communities. Whispering Pines and Wildflower, on the other hand, are located at the Earth Zone which also comprises Sanctuary Falls, Olive Point, Lime Tree Valley, and The Sundials communities. Yousif Kazim, General Manager, Jumeirah Golf Estates, said: “Our participation at Cityscape Global comes at an opportune time when the UAE real estate market is witnessing growth with demand surging for both residential and commercial properties. The exhibition offers real estate developers and industry professionals ideal business and networking opportunities during the course of three days as global as well as local investors throng to the event.” Speaking at the occasion of the handover of the first villa at Whispering Pines, Abdul Shakeel, Owner of the Villa, said: “Jumeirah Golf Estates is a unique community in Dubai set around golf course and I am elated to be the first owner to move to our villa in Whispering Pines. JGE have used the best construction material in the development and we are happy to trust them for our dream home. The handover of the villa reflects JGE’s dedication and commitment to complete the project and deliver it to the customers.”

Shop at X-cite and choose instant gift KUWAIT: X-cite by Alghanim Electronics, the largest electronics retailer in Kuwait, has always pushed the boundaries of attracting and retaining its customers with the most rewarding and exciting promotional offers it provides. During the month of October, X-cite is running a mega offer that includes instant valuable gifts. The mechanics are simple: Just buy above 100KD and get an instant gift. The more you spend, the more valuable the gift is. Not only that, but the customer has the freedom to choose his gift according to his preference from a wide variety of products ranging from kettles, irons, ovens to LED TVs, washing machines and fridges. If you are thinking about getting the newest gadget on the market or adding a new electronic device to your home, shop at X-cite and get more value from your purchases. X-cite has the largest network of retail electronics stores in Kuwait and the Middle East. It offers a convenient, dynamic and modern shopping experience that aims to add joyous, entertaining moments to shoppers’

time spent in the store. With its engaging and easy-to-use product display that encourages customers to get hands-on with the product of their choice, X-cite’s shopping experience is further enhanced with its Easy Credit program, a highly skilled and multi-lingual team of sales professionals and the latest and newest electronic devices and gadgets on the market. X-cite by Alghanim Electronics has branches in 17 locations situated in strategic areas across Kuwait as well as an online store,, a website that parallels Xcite’s unmatched in-store experience as it provides customers with valuable offers on quality brands. Customers can also enjoy many of Xcite’s convenient services including Easy Credit, shopping at any of X-cite’s select stores that are open 24-hours, extended warrantee programs, free delivery and installation services and X-cite’s bilingual online store,, that enables customers to buy any electronic device or gadget they want at anytime and any place.

KUWAIT: The Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (APICORP), the multilateral development bank owned by the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries (OAPEC), yesterday announced that it has acquired a 5.62% equity stake in Saudi-based The Industrialization and Energy Services Company (TAQA) from Arabian Pipes Company (APC).The government of Kuwait owns a 17% stake in APICORP. APICORP is now the joint third largest shareholder in the company with over 11.2 million shares. A Closed Joint Stock Company established in 2003 as part of Saudi Arabia’s privatization strategy, TAQA is owned 45% by the Saudi Government, with the reminder owned by several institutional, private and industrial investors. Ahmad Bin Hamad Al Nuaimi, APICORP’s CEO and GM said: “The TAQA equity acquisition is a perfect fit for our investment strategy. It is consistent with our commitment to supporting prominent Arab energy companies that show significant growth and value-creation potential. At the same time, it dovetails well into our objective of diversifying into sectors that provide vital support services for the hydrocarbon industry. TAQA has achieved robust growth over the last decade and its development has also brought tangible economic benefits, one of them being transfer of know-how. As part of our mandate, we are keen to invest in companies like TAQA, which play a crucial role in helping Arab countries maximize efficiencies in the energy value chain. As the company gears to expand its operations, we look forward to supporting its growth along with other key shareholders.” APICORP has a long and successful track record in participating as an equity stakeholder in companies in the Arab world. The Multilateral Development Bank participates in the strategic and

managerial development of its investee companies, bringing many strengths to their development including its strong capital and liquidity position, relationships with a range of institutional players, financial advisory services, and extensive technical and project management know-how. Riyadh-based TAQA has a substantial portfolio of subsidiaries and affiliates established in joint ventures with global leaders. These companies are today leading operators in fields such as drilling,

Ahmad Bin Hamad Al Nuaimi geophysical services, oil field services, seamless pipe manufacturing, industrial gases, and oil and gas offshore platform fabrication. Joint ventures in which it is a majority shareholder include Arab Drilling Company (ADC), one of Saudi Arabia’s largest drilling companies, established in alliance with Schlumberger; Arabian Geophysical &

Surveying Company (ARGAS) formed in partnership with CGG Veritas; and Al-Jubail Energy Services Company (JESCO), the GCC region’s first seamless pipes manufacturing company. Other joint ventures include Sanjel International Saudi Arabia Limited (SISAL), an oil fields services company created in partnership with Canadabased Sanjel International; Saipem Taqa Al-Rushaid Fabricators Company Ltd (STAR), the first major initiative in fabricating platforms for the offshore oil and gas fields in Saudi Arabia, formed in a JV with Italian engineering giant Saipem; and Air Liquide Arabia (ALAR), established in alliance with Air Liquide, the world’s largest supplier of industrial gases. ALAR has signed a 20-year gaseous nitrogen supply agreement with Saudi Aramco to supply Aramco projects in Qurrayah; and recently began the construction of global-scale hydrogen generators that will supply the Red Sea Refinery in Yanbu with hydrogen for 30 years. TAQA has exhibited consistent growth since its establishment in 2003. In 2012, the company reported a net profit of SAR 175 million, a growth of 237% from 2011. The total assets of the company stood at SAR 7.8 billion at the end of last year. “TAQA’s growth and ambitious expansion make it a very valuable addition to our investment diversification program, which earlier this year saw the launch of the APICORP Petroleum Shipping Fund. Establishing the right balance in our funding composition and prudently managing our debt has allowed us to accelerate the momentum of our investment growth. The success of our investments is borne out by our high asset quality, which was a key factor in Moody’s affirmation of APICORP’s Aa3 rating in September. Encouraged by these positives, we will continue to explore investment opportunities in new oil and gas and services sectors across the Arab world,” added Al Nuaimi.

TEAM GULF BANK eyes Global Management Challenge Title

KUWAIT: Gulf Bank has announced plans to field 12 teams called TEAM GULF BANK, comprising of both university students and Gulf Bank staff, for this year’s Global Management Challenge Kuwait to be held in November. The 12 TEAM GULF BANK will be among a number of other teams competing in the 2013 Global Management Challenge Kuwait, to become national champions of Kuwait and earn the right to compete for Kuwait in the final in April 2014. The Global Management Challenge is the largest simulated strategy and management competition in the world. It is a strategic management competition based around a virtual environment with its own market and shares. Teams manage their own companies with the objective of getting the highest share prices on a simulated stock exchange. The winning team in the national final will go on to represent Kuwait in the international finals, competing against national champions from more than 40 countries, including USA, Russia and China in Sochi, Russia, in April 2014. The Global Management Challenge teaches real world business tactics and decision-making in a virtual environment. Due to its effectiveness and success, it earned the EFMD-CEL accreditation (European Foundation for Management

Development- technology-enhanced learning program). Gulf Bank is partnering with ADNAR Group the exclusive organizer of the Global Management Challenge in the GCC, to form the 12 teams that will make up TEAM GULF BANK, all of which will be made up of Gulf Bank employees and students from universities in Kuwait. Commenting on the announcement, Salma Al -Hajjaj, General Manager of Human Resources at Gulf Bank said: “The Global Management Challenge brings together students, business schools, and corporations in a unique learning experience, preparing university students for a real work environment and enriching participating staff members challenging up-to-date business scenarios. “Gulf Bank’s support for this initiative underlines our commitment to supporting young people in the community. Our corporate social responsibility mission is focused on preparing youth to become tomorrow’s business generation, so that when they graduate, they will have the skills and tools to compete in a world- class commercial environment. These are the same skills which are needed to be successful in this competition, which is why we are so pleased and excited to have the opportunity to endorse and participate in this international learning experience.”

Salma Al-Hajjaj



Kaspersky Lab reinforces position in security market DUBAI: Kaspersky Lab has been ranked third largest vendor in the worldwide Corporate Endpoint Security Suite market by IDC’s”Worldwide Endpoint Security 2013-2017 Forecast and 2012 Vendor Shares” report. In the Security Suite segment of the Corporate Endpoint Security market, Kaspersky Lab is represented by Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Business, which has a 13 percent global market share. IDC expects this segment of the Corporate Endpoint Security market to be the fastest growing over the next five years, with an estimated11 percent CAGR growth. The report says: “IDC expects the endpoint market to be dominated by integrated endpoint security suites that contain anti-malware, desktop firewall, host intrusion prevention, white listing, advanced heuristics, encryption, and patching. A single agent is easier to install and manage while being able to match the capabilities of individual standalone products.” “Kaspersky Lab’s continued success in gaining corporate customers is in direct relation to its focus on end-users who want integrated suites that are comprised of the right mix of modern technologies,” said Charles Kolodgy, Research Vice President, Security Products, IDC. “The Corporate Endpoint Security Suite segment is the key element of Kaspersky Lab’s current business strategy. We see this market as the most critical in the IT security industry right now, and we’re glad the recent IDC report proves this trend. A growing number of companies are realizing the importance of being equipped with high-quality security solutions,and at the same time suffering due to their complexity. Having analyzed our customers’

needs, we have developed a solution that perfectly fits the corporate environment: this year we launched the brand new platform Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Business. With it we expect even better results in the Corporate Endpoint Security Suite market in 2013,” commented Garry Kondakov, Kaspersky Lab’s Chief Sales, Marketing & Support Officer. Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Business delivers a broad array of tools and technologies to enable companies to see, control and protect all endpoint devices. It offers businesses a critical combination of the industry’s best protection from advanced malware and cybercrime and seamless manageability - with Kaspersky Security Center helping IT specialists manage a company’s entire IT defenses from a single console. Consumer endpoint security market According to IDC, Kaspersky Lab has also improved its position in the B2C segment, climbing to third place among Consumer Endpoint Security vendors worldwide (up from fourth a year ago). Kaspersky Lab is about to launch Kaspersky Internet Security - Multi-Device 2014, a new product designed to protect devices across multiple platforms. The solution combines a wide range of easyto-use, rigorous security technologies that protect consumers against all types of malware and Internet-based threats, ensuring the highest levels of security for users’ devices and their digital assets. In the overall Endpoint Security market, Kaspersky Lab remains the fourth largest vendor worldwide, having increased its market share to 7.8 percent (in B2B + B2C) among all vendors, according to the report.

SAN FRANCISCO: Peak Design founder Peter Dering looks through a package of clothing he had received from Buck Mason at his office in San Francisco. — AP

Sloppy Silicon Valley techies find their style SAN JOSE: The Silicon Valley has had a men’s fashion problem dating back to its founders. From their inception, tech companies went out of their way to be different and that meant no more business suits. Thus brilliant innovations took place in the dumpiest of outfits as leather sandals, elastic-waist jeans and old T-shirts became ubiquitous. But that’s changing as a younger generation of engineers and designers have arrived seeking clothes that coordinate. “There’s definitely a shift happening here, and the age of the Silicon Valley culture has something to do with it,” said image professional Joseph Rosenfeld. “As a generation,” he said, young professionals “tend to care more about style than engineers of the past.” The market has responded to this new attitude among the region’s rising nerds, geeks and hackers with new online men’s stores, personal style consultants and an array of high-end shops at Northern California’s biggest mall. They’re catering to the emerging members of a creative industry who, nonetheless, are seeking something of a uniform. “They’ll typically wear designer denim and a great button-up shirt by day, and throw on a sport coat at night,” said Westfield Valley Fair mall general manager Matt Ehrie. “Silicon Valley’s dressy attire would be casual Friday in most other parts of the country.” Josh Meyer, 30, a products manager at a leading high-tech firm, recognizes the generation gap. He said higherlevel managers who have been in the industry for decades often wear baggy khakis and faded baseball shirts “like they’re going to a barbeque,” while millennials such as himself like to wear button-up dress shirts “high-quality denim jeans with a roll at the bottom, nice shoes or possibly boots.” “I can pick out techies just walking down the street by these outfits,” he said. The focus on men’s fashion has emerged in a sector where 3 of 4 workers are males. And it’s come late by comparison as women in technology have long faced style challenges. Many have worked to strike a casual, professional and creative balance, even as blogs and news stories regularly focus on the image of female high-tech executives from the extraordinarily stylish Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, featured in last month’s Vogue, to Facebook’s uber-chic chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg. Meanwhile, when men are similarly featured attention often shifts to casual attire from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s famous hoodie to former Apple CEO Steve Jobs’ black turtleneck. “As much as we want to think there isn’t a boys club, the Silicon Valley still feels very much run by men and there’s a difference in expectations,” says San Mateo-based image consultant Marina

Sarmiento Feehan. “Women who rise to the top tend to be judged more, both by men and other women, and in order to succeed they do have to dress better.” With the nation’s highest concentration of high-tech workers, accounting for almost a third of the jobs in the region, demographics show a younger, more affluent population than national averages. Newcomers tend to have the desire and the money to dress well, but they don’t always have the time, so the men’s fashion industry has responded by streamlining the process. Erik Schnakenberg, founder and CEO of a new online men’s store, Buck Mason, said his company focuses on “guys who want to look great, who are aware of style, and who are not going to spend their days in Bloomingdale’s trying to find the newest piece. Tech guys are at the top of that list.” Buck Mason client Peter Dering is a firsthand example. When Dering launched his online startup Peek Design, which innovates and builds camera accessories, he worked marathon hours and had no time to shop. Still, he had both a personal and professional interest in looking sharp as he was raising $1.5 million and trying to hire top talent. “You’ve got a lot of folks who think that their style doesn’t matter because they sit behind a desk all day, but the fact of the matter is that it does make a difference,” said Dering, noting that people who want to be taken seriously should dress appropriately. Buck Mason sells American-made clothes in packages of matching neutral outfits, enough to dress a software engineer for a week with no fashion faux pas, and targets it’s advertising online. The Silicon Valley is the company ’s top region for sales, Schnakenberg said. Also working to accommodate techies, one of the country’s best-performing malls, Westfield Valley Fair, has opened high-end men’s stores this year, including Prada, Salvatore Ferragamo, Burberry and Louis Vuitton. The shops are grouped together with a separate outside entrance so shoppers don’t have to fight past teens clogging the food court. And until now, such stores were mostly an hour away in San Francisco. The change in the Silicon Valley men’s fashion culture has made things interesting for image professionals such as Rosenfeld. For 13 years he was mostly a loner advising area professionals, but in recent months competitors have popped up, including ties + tees, a pair of Silicon Valley personal image consultants whose pitch includes, “The 90s called. They want their drab khakis back.” Still, Rosenfeld welcomes the new focus on fashion. “Birkenstocks with white socks was hideous back then, and it hasn’t gotten any better,” he said. “It’s time to up the ante.” — AP

At Twitter, global growth tests free speech advocacy global popularity translates to profits? SAN FRANCISCO: When a Brazilian state prosecutor last year set out to silence anonymous Twitter messages that were revealing the location of drunk-driving checkpoints, he served the social media company’s justopened Sao Paolo office with a lawsuit. Sharing sightings of police checkpoints does not violate any rules set by Twitter Inc, which has far fewer restrictions on content than social media rivals such as Facebook Inc. Nor would such Tweets be a crime in the United States. Twitter has traditionally resisted efforts to obtain the identity of users whose words might be regarded as a crime. But in Brazil, Twitter quickly handed over the Internet protocol addresses of three accounts as a demonstration of its “good faith, respect and will to cooperate with the Brazilian judicial power,” the company’s lawyers said in a legal filing last October. Even that wasn’t enough: the lawsuit, which demands that the company bar any such accounts in the future, is ongoing. The situation in Brazil is a microcosm of the public policy and business challenges facing Twitter as it seeks to translate global popularity into profits. Since its inception, the 140-character messaging service’s simplicity and mobile-friendly nature - it can be used by any cellphone with a text-messaging function - has helped speed its global adoption as a source of real-time information. Unlike many social media services, it can be used anonymously. The company’s laissez-faire approach to monitoring content, together with an aggressive posture in challenging government censorship requests and demands for customer information, have made it the darling of civil liberties advocates and political protesters from New York’s Zuccotti Park to Cairo’s Tahrir Square. But now, as it prepares to become a public company with a valuation expected to exceed $10 billion, Twitter must figure out how to make money outside the US International customers make up more than 75 percent of Twitter users, but only 25 percent of sales come from overseas. That means opening offices and employing people on the ground: there are now seven overseas offices and counting. And that, in turn, means complying with local laws even when they conflict with the company’s oft-stated positioning as “the free-speech wing of the freespeech party.” These conflicts, paradoxically, arise not so much in countries with repressive governments - the service is banned outright in China, for instance - but rather in countries with Western-style democracies, including Brazil, Germany, France, Britain and India. “There are a bunch of countries that you can’t treat like China because they have democratic systems and they abide by the rule of law, but they have speech restrictions that we would find objectionable,” said Andrew McLaughlin, a former director of global public policy at Google Inc and White House technology official who is now chief executive of news website Digg. “Those are the issues where the rubber hits the road on free speech.” In Twitter’s initial public offering prospectus, which was made public last week, there was only an oblique mention of protecting speech. The company said its corporate mission was to facilitate the dissemination of “ideas and information instantly without barriers,” and that “our business and revenue will always follow that mission in ways that improve and do not detract from - a free and

global conversation.” Alex Macgillivray, the former general counsel who coined the company’s free speech slogan and was widely regarded as a staunch civil libertarian, left the company in September. Twitter declined to comment about potential conflicts between its business goals and its free-speech advocacy in general, or any specific cases. There’s certainly no shortage of political chatter on Twitter, and world leaders ranging from Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to Pope Francis have taken to the service as a means of communicating directly with constituents. Activists say they haven’t seen Twitter backing away from its freespeech policies yet - but they’re wary. “Twitter has always been an ally,” said Hisham Almiraat, a Moroccan blogger who manages the anti-censorship website Global Voices Advocacy. “As soon as Twitter becomes public, it needs to be accountable to its shareholders, and its strategy becomes more short-term. If Twitter, for reasons of greed, or because they are politically compelled, decides to change that core philosophy, then I’ll worry.”

been sued by a government. “Social networks are a relatively new reality and so is their impact,” Canedo told Reuters. “There are future situations today we can’t even imagine and in which the State will have to position itself in front of certain illegal, harmful practices being carried out over the Internet.” His case has not exactly gone smoothly. Even after obtaining Internet addresses from Twitter, the prosecutors misidentified the suspects behind the driving checkpoint Tweets. They then dropped the case against the individuals, but still want Twitter to bar any such accounts in the future. Hate speech in Europe Twitter has long tried to hew to the position that users - not the company - are responsible for the content on the service. But last year it implemented a means of filtering Tweets by country, so that if it were forced to censor messages in one place it would still be able to show them in others. That capability was used for the first time last October, when Twitter yielded to a request from German police to filter a neo-Nazi

local offices even more than some other Internet companies because its ad strategy depends on wooing large brand advertisers that need to be serviced by a direct sales presence, noted Clark Fredericksen, an analyst at eMarketer. While Google can make money by allowing small businesses in a country to use its self-serve advertising platform, Twitter’s selfserve ad product remains in its infancy and is only available in the US. New problems In countries such as Egypt and Turkey, Twitter has sought to avoid falling under local jurisdiction by selling ads through contractors, although it remains unclear whether the strategy will be tenable in the long run. Amid massive anti-government protests fueled by organizers on Twitter this summer, Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan threatened to shut down the service, which he called a “scourge.” His government called on Twitter to set up an office in the country so it would fall under Turkish law. Twitter rebuffed the request and weeks later posted a job for an executive in Dublin to manage ad resellers within

MADRID: A Twitter tweet announcing the company’s planned initial public offering (IPO) is pictured on a mobile telephone back-dropped by various twitter logos. — AFP Opportunity in Brazil A booming, social media-loving country of more than 80 million Internet users, Brazil perennially ranks among Twitter’s most active markets. When the company set up operations in Sao Paolo in late 2012, the company’s top sales executive, Adam Bain, described the opportunity in the country as “amazing from a business perspective.” As in many Latin American nations, the service is used by everyone from the president on down. And with Twitter proving to be a powerful companion medium for sports and other forms of televised entertainment, Brazil’s role as host of the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympic Games make it an especially attractive target. Yet the broad adoption of Twitter has not been accompanied by broad tolerance of the free-wheeling conversations that characterize social media in general and Twitter in particular. Brazilian government bodies regularly file more requests for user information or content removal than any country other than the US, according to transparency reports published periodically by companies including Twitter and Google. Luis Fernando Canedo, the prosecutor in Brazil, described his case over the driving checkpoints as a landmark for the country - and also for Twitter, which had never before

group’s Twitter account so that users in Germany could not see it. Earlier this year, just as Twitter’s head of international strategy, Katie Jacobs Stanton, relocated to France to open Twitter’s Paris office, Twitter’s lawyers were fighting an order by a French court to reveal the email and IP addresses of users who had sent a spate of anti-Semitic tweets, which are prohibited under the country’s hate-speech laws. When Twitter exhausted its appeals in July, the company turned over the information. In Britain, meanwhile, parliament in April passed a new defamation law that shifted liability to At Twitter, global growth tests free speech advocacy website operators for its users’ posted content, which some observers said could hasten the end of online anonymity. Like most global companies, Twitter has always acknowledged that it must obey the laws of the countries in which it operates. At the same time, though, it had little physical presence internationally and thus could take a hands-off approach. Now, as Twitter grows its sales operation, absence is not a viable strategy. “If you make the choice to operate in a country, you’re subject to local laws,” said Roy Gilbert, a former Google executive who set up the search giant’s operations in India in 2004. Twitter, moreover, may need

Turkey. Ozgur Uckan, a communication professor at Istanbul Bilgi University, said authorities may still be able to pressure the company by targeting its local partners. “The authorities may try to force Twitter to comply, using their regulation tools like tax issues,” Uckan said. In recent months, the ruling party backed away from its efforts to muzzle the service. Instead, it is adopting a tactic that has raised yet more questions about Twitter’s future in the country. The ruling AK Party recruited thousands of volunteers and paid workers to join Twitter, two party sources told Reuters. The pro-government volunteers have employed tactics such as reporting their political rivals as spammers, leading to their accounts’ suspension. “We decided to fight against them with their own tool and now we are more active on Twitter,” said one party member, who asked not to be named. The tactics proved so successful that Twitter chief executive Dick Costolo was pressed to make a statement in July denying that the company was cooperating with the Turkish government to suspend opposition accounts. “You can’t imagine the Internet without Twitter or Google. They are now considered the air you breathe,” said Almiraat, the Moroccan blogger. “Now they’re in a position of power, and they should be very careful with that power.” — Reuters

DARWIN: A handout photo shows Stella from Solar Team Eindhoven crossing the start line in the World Solar Challenge in Darwin. Last held in 2011, the epic 3,000-kilometre (1,860-mile) solar car race across Australian outback was led out by Team Eindhoven from the Netherlands in their four-seater car Stella, one of eight competitors in the new Cruiser class which aims to showcase solar technology for mainstream vehicles. — AFP


H E A LT H & S C I E N C E

GSK aims to market first malaria vaccine

Are blood clots after surgery a sign of hospital quality? NEW YORK: Some policymakers have suggested using the number of patients that form blood clots after surgery as a measure of a hospital’s quality. But a new study questions that idea. Researchers found high-quality hospitals and those that regularly check for the complications tend to have higher rates of blood clots than low-quality hospitals and those that don’t look for clots as often. “Usually, if you have a higher complication rate, you’re not doing a good job, but in this case it’s actually the opposite,” Dr Karl Bilimoria, the study’s lead author from Northwestern University and Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, said. Because hospitals and doctors that look for the blood clots tend to find more of them, a hospital’s clot numbers may give a false impression of its quality, the researchers write in The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). Blood clots can form after surgery because the body is in a “clotting mindset” trying to stop all bleeding, Bilimoria said. “Blood clots after surgery are an important complication,” he said. “They can have severe consequences, and it can be fatal if the blood clot travels to the lung.” The blood clots - known as venous thromboembolisms or VTEs - are considered preventable if hospitals spot at-risk patients and put them on medications to stop blood from clumping together. For the new study, Bilimoria and his colleagues examined data from 2,786 hospitals and 954,926 patients who were discharged after surgery between 2009 and 2010. All the patients were on Medicare, the governmentrun insurance program for the elderly and

disabled. In one analysis, the researchers compared hospitals they considered to be high quality with those they dubbed low quality. High-quality facilities, for example, were those that did a lot of surgeries and organ transplants and were teaching hospitals. High-quality hospitals were more likely to comply with blood clot prevention methods, they found, but still had a higher proportion of surgery patients with clots. Hospitals considered to be high quality reported about 6.4 blood clots for every 1,000 surgery patients, compared to 4.8 clots per 1,000 patients at low-quality hospitals. What’s more, hospitals that did the most tests looking for blood clots found and reported more than twice as many clots as hospitals that did the fewest tests. In an editorial accompanying the study, Dr Edward Livingston, a deputy editor at JAMA, said the results demonstrate that the blood clot rates reported on government websites “reflect how aggressively clinicians look for (blood clots) but probably are not directly related to quality of care.” Due to the US government shutdown, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the government organization that first proposed using blood clot rates to judge hospital quality, did not respond to a request to comment. “I wouldn’t use that metric at all when trying to decide where to go for surgery,” Bilimoria said. “If anything, you might want to use it in the other direction. That’s sort of a suggestion from the data.” He suggested a better measure of quality would be how well hospitals follow the guidelines to prevent blood clots.—AP

What experts say about blood clots on brain

NEW YORK: Argentine President Cristina Fernandez is undergoing surgery yesterday to relieve a subdural hematoma causing pressure on her brain. Here are some details about this condition: Symptoms: Depending on the size and location, a hematoma may cause confusion; memory loss; difficulty speaking, swallowing or walking; drowsiness; headaches; seizures; or weakness or numbness of the arms, legs or face. Diagnosis: Problem can be discovered when doctors check patient’s balance, coordination, mental functions, sensation and strength. But because symptoms are often subtle, computer scan of head or magnetic resonance imaging exam may be necessary.

Treatment: Surgery may be necessary to reduce or prevent permanent brain damage. This may include drilling small holes in skull to relieve pressure and suction out fluid. Large hematomas or solid blood clots may require opening section of the skull, which is called a craniotomy. Prognosis: Between 80 percent and 90 percent of patients have significant brain function improvement after surgery, but recovery can be prolonged and incomplete. Patients may need drugs to control or prevent seizures for up to a year, with symptoms including amnesia, attention difficulty, anxiety, sleep problems and headaches. Most adults recover within six months, but some patients may need further surgery if the fluid returns.—AP

LONDON: British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline will seek marketing approval for the world’s first malaria vaccine next year after trial data showed the shot significantly cut cases of the disease in African children. The vaccine known as RTS,S was found, after 18 months of follow-up, to have almost halved the number of malaria cases in young children in the trial, and to have reduced by around a quarter the number of malaria cases in infants. “Based on these data, GSK now intends to submit, in 2014, a regulatory application to the European Medicines Agency (EMA),” GSK, which has been developing the vaccine for three decades, said in a statement. It added that the United Nations health agency, the Geneva-based World Health Organization (WHO), has indicated it may recommend use of the RTS,S vaccine from as early as 2015 if EMA drugs regulators back its licence application. Malaria, a mosquito-borne parasitic disease, kills hundreds of thousands of people a year, mainly babies in the poorest parts of subSaharan Africa, and scientists say an effective vaccine is key to attempts to eradicate it. Yet

hopes that RTS,S would be the final answer were dampened last year when results from a finalstage trial with 6,537 babies aged six to 12 weeks showed the shot provided only modest protection, reducing episodes of the disease by 30 percent compared to immunization with a control vaccine. Malaria cases fill hospital wards Yesterday’s latest readout from the malaria trial, which is Africa’s largest ever clinical trial involving almost 15,500 children in seven countries, were presented at a medical meeting in Durban, South Africa. GSK is developing RTS,S with the non-profit PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative (MVI), with grant funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to MVI. “Many millions of malaria cases fill the wards of our hospitals. Progress is being made with bed nets and other measures, but we need more tools to battle this terrible disease,” said Halidou Tinto, a lead investigator on the RTS,S trial from Burkina Faso. Previous data sets released from earlier parts of the trial showed the vaccine’s efficacy was 65 percent in babies analyzed six months after vaccination, and only around 50

percent in five to 17 month-olds. And further data released earlier this year found RTS,S’s effectiveness wanes over time, with the shot protecting only 16.8 percent of children over four years. Despite these drawbacks, David Kaslow, vice president of product development at PATH, said RTS,S would serve as a useful additional tool alongside other malaria control measures such as mosquito nets, insecticides and anti-malaria drugs. “Given the huge disease burden of malaria among African children, we cannot ignore what these latest results tell us about the potential for RTS,S to have a measurable and significant impact on the health of millions of young children in Africa,” he said in a statement. “This trial continues to show that a malaria vaccine could potentially bring an important additional benefit beyond that provided by the tools already in use.” If approved, the vaccine is unlikely to be anything other than neutral for GSK’s bottom line. GSK has promised that if RTS,S is given the market go-ahead, it will be priced at cost of manufacture plus a 5 percent margin, and the margin would be reinvested in malaria research.—Reuters

Hundreds sickened in US from salmonella linked to raw chicken WASHINGTON: Hundreds of people in 18 states have become sick from a salmonella outbreak linked to raw chicken products made at three California plants owned by Foster Farms, the US Department of Agriculture said on Monday.” The outbreak is continuing,” USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service said in a statement. An estimated 278 illnesses, mostly in California, were caused by strains of Salmonella Heidelberg. The chicken products were distributed mostly to retail outlets in California, Oregon and Washington state, USDA said. The illnesses were linked to Foster Farms brand chicken through epidemiologic, laboratory and traceback investigations conducted by local, state and federal officials. In a statement,

Livingston, California-based Foster Farms said it was working with authorities to reduce the incidence of Salmonella Heidelberg on raw chicken products. No recall is in effect, the privately owned company added. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is partnering with state health departments to monitor the outbreak while the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) continues its investigation, USDA said. “In addition to collaborating with FSIS and CDC, the company has retained national experts in epidemiology and food safety technology to assess current practices and identify opportunities for further improvement,” Foster Farms President Ron Foster said in a statement. Salmonella Heidelberg is the

third most common strain of the Salmonella pathogen, which can result in foodborne illness if not destroyed by the heat of proper cooking. The most common symptoms of salmonella infection are diarrhea, abdominal cramps and fever within eight to 72 hours. Additional symptoms may be chills, headache, nausea and vomiting that can last up to seven days. FSIS is one of the arms of USDA that continues to work during the federal government shutdown, but with reduced staffing. Meat, poultry and processed egg inspection activities have been maintained. Raw products from the facilities bear one of the following numbers inside a USDA mark of inspection or elsewhere on the package: P6137, P6137A or P7632.—Reuters

EU lawmakers vote on controversial anti-smoking bill STRASBOURG: European lawmakers yesterday vote on a long-fought and divisive anti-smoking bill that aims to ban “slims” and menthol cigarettes while tightening legislation on increasingly popular e-cigarettes. If adopted as stands in an afternoon vote, the legislation before the European parliament will also force tobacco firms to print large health warnings covering 75 percent of packets. The aim is to cut the number of smokers across the 500-million bloc “by two percent in the next five years,” the EU’s Health Commissioner Toni Borg said as he urged MEPs to be “daring” and support the plan. But these first anti-smoking measures in more than a decade, which specifically aim to discourage young smokers, have unleashed a tough lobbying campaign from the tobacco

industry that threatens the outcome of the vote. MEPs say Philip Morris alone has invested 1.4 million euros to convince the parliament to scrap parts of the proposal and 176 amendments to the European Commission’s proposal have been tabled to date. Last Friday, health ministers from 16 of the 28 European Union states issued an appeal for a swift adoption of the law. It was supposed to go before parliament in September but was delayed on the request of the conservative, liberal and euro-skeptic groups. Of key concern to some lobbyists is the fate of electronic cigarettes, which the Commission wants to label as a medicinal product meaning sales would be restricted to chemist outlets. Once approved by the parliament, the antitobacco bill will still have to be greenlighted by

the 28 EU nations, meaning the legislation cannot come into effect before 2017. The proposed new rules on labeling, ingredients and smokeless products fell shor t of demands by some health campaigners for a total ban on company branding and logos on packets, along the lines of measures enforced in Australia. Borg said on introducing the proposals that with 70 percent of smokers starting before the age of 18, the ambition was “to make tobacco products and smoking less attractive and thus discourage tobacco initiation among young people.” Almost 700,000 Europeans die from tobacco-related illnesses each year-equal to the population of a Frankfurt or Palermo-with associated health co s t s r u n n i n g a t m o re t h a n 2 5 b i l l i o n euros.—AFP

In Venezuela, music eases pain of kids with cancer

CARACAS: Nine-year-old Victoria Alzuru looks earnest and determined and happy as she practices her violin before undergoing chemotherapy. The girl pulls the bow across the strings and makes music-anxiety-relieving music-before she goes in for another session of treatment that has already cost her an ovary. “It makes her forget everything,” says her 43-year-old mother Lourdes, who brings Victoria to a children’s hospital in Caracas every two weeks from their home in Los Teques in the northern state of Miranda. The music lessons are a treat from an award-winning music program called the National System of Children’s and Youth Orchestras. In Venezuela, people just call it “El Sistema.” It has been around for decades, working to rescue children from poverty and street crime through music education. And in recent years it has expanded into hospitals, detention centers, shelters and remote settlements for indigenous people. In downtown Caracas, the state-run Hospital JM de los Rios is the first to go musical with El Sistema. Children receive classes while they are hospitalized or undergoing chemotherapy. They attend concerts or are lent instruments to play during their long periods of convalescence. “Children learn very fast, especially those that are hospitalized, because they are here all day and have nothing else to do:

CARACAS: A child receiving chemotherapy at the oncology ward of the JM de los Rios pediatric hospital listens to an explanation with his guitar on the ready.

CARACAS: Members of Venezuela’s Youth Symphonic Orchestra play for patients hospitalized in the oncology yard of the JM de los Rios pediatric hospital.—AFP photos they can just pass the time or they can learn something,” said Marlon Franco, a musician and driving force behind the program. Victoria’s face is pallid. She wears a colorful cap to hide her hair loss. She giggles as she plays the violin, and is part of a quartet with other kids who play the maracas, the mandolin and a ‘cuatro,’ a Venezuelan stringed instrument for playing folk music. “I also want to learn to sing,” Victoria tells one of her teachers.

Music for cheering up and enduring “Music and all arts in general help the child have a much more positive outlook. It helps them relax and more readily accept treatment against leukemia, for instance,” said Susana Pachano, a doctor who heads the hematology department. Near her, children in bed with cancerfighting chemicals dripping into their veins listen to a waltz played with a violin, maracas and a double bass. “It cheers up the unpleasantness of the chemotherapy, the transfusions. It helps

CARACAS: Patients receiving chemotherapy at the oncology yard of the JM de los Rios pediatric hospital holds a pair of maracas.

CARACAS: Venezuela’s Youth Symphonic Orchestra Director Dietrich Paredes listens to a girl hospitalized in the oncology yard of the JM de los Rios pediatric hospital sing. the children and their families,” Pachano adds. In the waiting room, a young orchestra director who came out of El Sistema, Dietrich Paredes, chats encouragingly with two kids who are about to strum ‘cuatros’ with other musicians. “Keep fighting. We are proud of you,” he tells them. Then the music starts: two mandolins, some maracas, a violin and a double bass. Parents and relatives look on, their faces a mix of hope and sadness. Yaczuly Echeverria, a 23-year-old philos-

ophy student and violin teacher at the hospital, says the kids are not treated with pity but “rather as human beings who are growing and right now are going through a very rough time.” Echeverria likes her work but of course at times it is challenging. “It saddens us when they get worse, when they die,” she said. “We try to encourage them and the parents and give them hope. We try to make the time we spend with them happy, regardless of what happens later.”—AFP

CARACAS: Children hospitalized in the oncology yard of the JM de los Rios pediatric hospital play their instruments.


H E A LT H & S C I E N C E

Americans: don’t weigh costs of new treatments NEW YORK: Most Americans don’t want the government to decide if medical treatments are economical before letting patients use them, a new survey suggests. In some places, such as the UK and Germany, governments do have that power. Before patients can use a new drug, for instance, the government studies how well it works. It also sees what the drug costs compared to other drugs before deciding to make it available. “The idea is to say, if we add this new technology, are we getting enough value for it given the increase in what we have to pay?” said Michael Botta. Botta led the study while in Harvard University ’s Program in Health Policy in Cambridge, Massachusetts. “In those countries, I feel like it works pretty well,” he told Reuters Health. But in the new study, just 44 percent of Americans were in favor of doing something similar in the US. Botta’s team spoke by phone with roughly a thousand adults who were typical of Americans across the country. They asked if people would support a government agency to study the costs and benefits of medical treatments. They also asked for opinions about four situations. One, for example, involved a new drug for cancer. The drug lets people with cancer live a few months longer. But it costs $35,000 per patient. In another case, one drug costs 100 times more than another. The expensive drug is proven to help treat a serious condition. The cheaper drug is not well tested, but many doctors use it because it seems to work. Here, people were asked how they’d feel if only the cheaper drug was available. Along with their lack of enthusiasm for a US agency, most people - between 61 and 73 percent - did not support decisions to limit a treatment’s use or not provide it at all. That surprised

Botta. He expected people would not like the idea of a cost-effectiveness agency. Still, he thought more would understand the trade-offs that come with individual decisions. But, he said, when people think of being sick, they don’t care if a drug only adds a few months to the average patient’s life. They think they themselves might get a larger benefit. “I think most people in this country feel that if a treatment might help a person, then that treatment should be available to that person without considering the cost-effectiveness of that particular treatment,” said Eugene Nelson. Nelson directs the population health measurement program at The Dartmouth Institute in Lebanon, New Hampshire. Dr Alec B. O’Connor, who has studied costeffectiveness at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in New York, agreed. “What I think is interesting about this is Americans seem to really focus on themselves as the patient,” he told Reuters Health. But, he said, Americans don’t seem to focus on themselves as the ones who are paying the bill. Through insurance premiums and taxes, everyone is paying for other people’s care, said O’Connor, who didn’t work on the study. “I think Americans would not feel like they should be paying huge amounts for small amounts of benefit in other people. People lose sight of the fact that they’re paying for that.” What’s more, he said, insurance companies already decide what they will and won’t pay. It’s just not always done in a rational way that considers cost and benefits. ‘Greater bang for the buck’ Dr Alvin Mushlin, who heads the department of public health at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York, said he was actually surprised by

how many people were in favor of considering costs. Mushlin, who wasn’t involved in the new study, wonders if the results would be different if people knew what the savings could be used for. Helping pregnant women get prenatal care might be one use, for example. The point of cost-effectiveness analysis “is not to save money,” Mushlin told Reuters Health. The point “is to redirect the funds where you get even a greater bang for the buck,” he said. The new study, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, was funded by a grant from the pharmaceutical company Bayer. Botta, who now works for a consulting firm, said governments usually pay for healthcare in countries with cost-effectiveness agencies. In the US, such an agency would probably only make decisions for what treatments are covered under Medicare, the government insurance program for the elderly and disabled. He said rising healthcare costs are going to mean some treatments won’t be feasible. According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, US healthcare spending was $2.7 trillion in 2011. That comes to about $8,680 per person. “ We can’t keep spending ever increasing amounts...on healthcare,” Botta said. “This problem is not going away.” Still, he said, the findings suggest “it’s going to be hard to find good solutions that people are willing to attempt to actually reduce the amount that we spend on healthcare.” Nelson, who didn’t participate in the new study, said he thinks making certain treatments unavailable based on cost is now “politically unthinkable” in the US. But there are other ways to curb health spending, he told Reuters Health. Those include getting rid of inefficiencies, preventing costly adverse events and promoting shared decision making between patients and doctors.—Reuters

Get richer, die younger PARIS: We all live longer when times are good, right? Not so, according to a new study which says that in developed countries, the elderly have a higher mortality rate when the economy goes into higher gear. Even its authors are baffled by the outcome. The finding was “highly unexpected”, Herbert Rolden from the Leyden Academy on Vitality and Ageing in the Netherlands, told AFP. In the long term, economic prosperity is credited with lower mortality rates across all age groupslargely due to a drop in old-age mortality. But the picture changes when you look at short-term economic fluctuations, according to the study which appears in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. For every rise of one percentage point in a country’s gross

domestic product, mortality among 70-74-yearold men rose by 0.36 percent and for women of the same age by 0.18 percent, it found. Among 40-45-year-olds, the corresponding rise was 0.38 percent for men and 0.16 for women. The study analyzed mortality and economic growth figures from 1950 to 2008 in 19 developed countries-Australia, Japan, New Zealand, the United States and several in Europe. “Since many developed countries are currently in a recession, one could expect that this has a dampening effect on old age survival,” says the study. “However, it has been found that annual increases in unemployment, or decreases in gross domestic product (GDP) are associated with LOWER mortality rates.” A similar, seemingly counterintuitive trend had

already been found in younger people. That had been ascribed to more work stress and traffic accidents due to higher employment in economic boom times. But such factors are unlikely to hold true for older, retired people, said Rolden. “We are still in the dark on what really explains the association,” he admitted. The cause may lie in a change in social structure, with younger relatives and friends working longer and having less time to care for the elderly, according to one, untested, theory. Another idea pins the blame on air pollution, which increases during economic expansion and is likelier to have more of an effect on frail people. The team call for more research. Unravelling the mystery could have many benefits, they say.—AFP

Nearly one in 10 US youth admits to sexual violence NEW YORK: Nearly 1 in 10 US teens and young adults say they have forced or coerced another person to perform sexual acts, such as kissing, sexual touching or intercourse, a new study suggest In the study, which surveyed 1,058 people ages 14 to 21, 9 percent reported they had perpetrated sexual violence - a broad term that refers to acts ranging from sexual harassment to rape. Eight percent said they had “kissed, touched or made someone else do something sexual knowing the other person did not want to,” the researchers said. Three percent admitted to coercive sex - or getting someone to have sex when he or she does not want to - and 2 percent forced someone to have sex. Another 3 percent attempted rape, but were not able to force the other person to have sex. Most perpetrators of attempted or completed rape used coercive tactics, such as arguing, pressuring, or making someone feel guilty rather than physical force. Most crimes went unreported to authorities: Just 1 percent of perpetrators reported contact with the police, and 1 percent reported arrest. About two-thirds (66 percent) said that no one found out about the act, and they did not get into trouble. About half of the perpetrators said the victim was responsible for the sexual violence. “Because victim blaming appears to be common while perpetrators experiencing consequences is not, there is urgent need for high school (and middle school) programs aimed at supporting bystander intervention,” the researchers said, referring to programs that encourage community members to intervene before, during or after an assault to prevent future assaults. Male and female difference Among perpetrators of any sexual violence, 58 percent were male, as were 89 percent of those who attempted rape, 68 percent of those

who completed rape, and 75 percent of those who committed coercive sex. On average, perpetrators were 16 when they committed their first act of attempted or completed rape. Those who committed their first act when they were 15 or younger were nearly all male. But by age 18 or 19, the percentage of male and female perpetrators of attempted and completed rape was nearly equal, the researchers said. Females tended to report victimizing older individuals, while males reported victimizing younger individuals. Females were also more likely act in groups when they attempted or committed rape. Two out of 10 female perpetrators said they acted in a group compared to 1 out of 39 male perpetrators. The researchers note that gender biases can make it hard to study sexual violence in which women victimize men. “It is not uncommon to believe that a man cannot be raped by a woman,” the researchers write. However, “physiological data suggest that men can be raped; an erection does not necessarily mean sexual arousal and can be reflexogenic. Another study published last month found that about 25 percent of men in Asia and the Pacific said they had committed rape at least once in their lives. Future work Perpetrators in the new study were also more likely to report being exposed to violent X-rated media. While the study cannot tease out cause-and-effect “links between perpetration and violent sexual media are apparent, suggesting a need to monitor adolescents’ consumption of this material,” the researchers said. Because people may be reluctant to identify themselves as sexual perpetrators in a survey, the study may underestimate the prevalence of sexual violence in teens and young adults, the researchers said. Future studies are needed to confirm the results.—Reuters


W H AT ’ S O N



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

Announcements KKIC to hold Islamic students conference uwait Kerala Islahi is planning to conduct Second Islamic Students Conference (ISCON) on November 1 and 2 at Grand Mosque. Scores of students had participated in last year’s students’ workshop and other various activities. The two-day program will commence with inaugural ceremony on Friday evening. Renowned guests from the Ministry of Awqaf, Islamic Heritage Society in addition to renowned educationists, experts, guest lecturers from in and out of Kuwait will participate in the conference. Several sessions will be held under students workshop, parenting and butterfly meets with support of presentations. A souvenir will be released on this occasion. Students will be admitted only through registration. For details call on 50775545, 66977038, 99392791.


Oula Fuel Marketing concludes First Aid Workshop ula Fuel Marketing Company announced the conclusion of its training workshop entitled “First Aid Basics” that was organized by the Training & Administrative Affairs Department. The training was held at the company’s headquarters in the Kuwait Business Town Tower from September 17-19, 2013.


Radisson Blu Hotel Kuwait welcomes first guests after KD 15m renovation

Kala (Art) Kuwait Onam-Eid on Friday, October 11


ala(Art) Kuwait, a leading Progressive Art and Socio Cultural Organization among the Indian Community in Kuwait has scheduled to celebrate “ONAM the Festival of Kerala and “EID” together on Friday, the 11th October 2013 @ 10:00AM at Indian Community School, Khaithan. The program has been scheduled with the traditional dances and variety of cultural activities by our distinctive artists and a Ganamela (musical concert) at 3:30PM by leading singers from Kuwait will be an added attraction to entertain our expatriate community along with an opulent meal “Onasadhya”. According to Hassan Koya, President Kala (Art) Kuwait and Mukesh V. P. General Secretary, Kala(Art) Kuwait, for the successful conduct of the program, a Reception Committee has been formed is headed by Jaison Joseph as General Convener, Anil Kumar and Kunjiraman as Joint Conveners and Johney Kalamachal, K. Sadik, Samkutty Thomas, Aboobakkar, Biju Thikkodi, C. Bhaskaran, T K Narayanan, Prabhabakara Panikkar, Artist Sreenivasan, Renuka Bhaskaran, Pushpa Narayanan, Santhosh Joseph, Aji Kumar, Noushad, A. Mohanan, V. Mohanan, Aneesh, Vibin, Shaijith, Rakesh, Jayesh, Shaji K. V., Bibin, Anil Varghese, Rijo, Sunil Kumar, Lakh, Sasi, C K Joy, K K Suresh, Murali, Mustafa, Daniel are the committee members.


adisson Blu Hotel Kuwait starts welcoming its first guests this month, following a three year renovation period. The property holds particular significance, both within the company history - as the first Radisson Blu hotel outside of Scandinavia, and as an iconic meeting place for the capital city. Philippe Pellaud, General Manager of the Radisson Blu Hotel, Kuwait commented: ‘This is my second re-opening of this hotel as the general manager, but although the redevelopment project took three years to finish, some of the facilities continued to operate during that time. Our Viking recreational club, the Al-Boom restaurant, meetings and events department, conference centre at Al Hashemi II and eight rooms were open, so now we are just continuing our hotel’s history, better and stronger.’ The newly-improved Radisson Blu Hotel Kuwait underwent KD 15 million of investment, which has transformed the property, both structurally and decoratively. The hotel now offers a five-star modernized interior, with the introduction of Sky Lounge ñ a glassencased rooftop facility with panoramic views of the Arabian Gulf, exclusively reserved for Business Class and

Suite guests. Sky Lounge will offer refreshments served either inside or on the outside terrace throughout the day, as well as business facilities (free WI-FI access, computer work stations with printer, and complementary reading materials). About 191 guest rooms including six Junior Suites, 16 Executive Suites, six Deluxe Suites, one Admiral Suite, and one Presidential Suite ñ all of which deliver Radisson Blu signature services such as complementary high-speed internet access and high-end in-room facilities as standard. The dÈcor of the guest rooms and suites will alternate between three distinctive styles; ‘Naturally Cool’; a modern design comprising of a soft blue and neutral colour palette, ‘And Relax’; a calming and soothing environment using carved wooden accents, and ‘NY Mansion House’; based on a traditional but sophisticated uptown mansion house. Of particular note, the Presidential Suite has been extended and upgraded, and now features an extra 55sqm of space, and the installation of floor-to-ceiling windows in both the living room and bedroom, to allow guests to enjoy the stunning views of the ocean. The hotel’s food and beverage options have also

‘Peter Pan’ at Ice Skating Rink

KDNA to conduct henna designing competition ozhikode District NRI Association (KDNA) will conduct a Henna Designing competition for women contestants in Kuwait on the occasion of “Malabar Mahotsava 2013” on November 15th 2013 at 10 am at Indian Central School, Abbassiya. Fabulous prizes will be given to the best designers. The winners will be eligible for 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes sponsored by Malabar Gold & Diamonds. Interested contestants may please contact 97797680. There will be a special stall with Henna & other accessories required for the competition at Malabar Mahotsava “Mananchira Square”.



he Touristic Enterprises Company announced partnership with Promedia Advertising to host the ‘Peter Pan on Ice’ show at the Ice Skating Rink during the Eid AlAdha holiday. On that regard, TEC Assistant CEO Khalid Bin Sabt announced that the universal show is held for the first time in Kuwait and the Gulf region. ‘It was selected for being one of the most distinguished shows worldwide played on ice worldwide and accompanied by distinguished side effects and costumes’, Bin Sabt said in a recent statement. The event takes place every day between the 15th and 19th of October, with two shows a day; the first starting at 4:30 pm and the second at 8:00 pm.

Enjoy 3 nights at Starwood hotels for 2 urgan Bank announced yesterday that its XChange card holders can benefit from the bank’s new offer when travelling within Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Customers can book for two nights to receive a third night for free in more than 230 Starwood Hotels such as Sheraton, Le Meridien, W Hotels and many more. This offer is valid until July 31, 2014. The X-Change card comes in seven different currencies: the US dollars, euro, British pound, Saudi riyal, UAE dirhams, Egyptian pound as well as the Filipino peso. The card, which provides its users with easy access to online shopping, ticket booking and hotel reservations, comes with a unique key feature which is the ability to capture and hold the value of the exchange rate at which the card was bought to enable customers to capitalize on their preferred currency rates and withstand future currency fluctuations. Burgan Banks latest promotion is part of their long term commitment to provide customers with innovative benefits that go beyond their banking needs. To find out more about Burgan Bank’s X-Change card, or any of its products and services, customers can visit any of the bank’s branches, or contact the call center.


KERA painting competition for children rnakulum Residents Association (KERA) is organizing a Drawing/Painting Competition named KERA MAZHAVILLU 2013 as part of their Onam celebrations, for children aged below 16years, of Ernakulam residents of Kuwait. The competitions will be conducted on Friday, 11th October 2013 at the United Indian School, Abbassiya from 01:30 PM onwards. KERA officials have welcomed everyone to the program and mentioned that the subject matter of the competition is “Thiruvonam”, the national festival of Kerala. Rules and regulations of the competition will be as follows. Children of age group from 3-7 years will compete in the Sub-juniors group and will have to paint the A4 size picture provided during the competition within the fixed time, with Crayons/Colouring pencil. Children of age group from 8-11years will compete in the Juniors group and will have to paint the A4 size picture provided during the competition within fixed time, with Water color. Children of age group from 12-16years will compete in the Seniors group and will have to draw picture based on the theme announced, on an A3 sized paper provided during the competition and then paint the picture within fixed time, with water colour.

undergone improvements; Eedam CafÈ & Gourmet Shop will now include Starbucks Coffee products on the menu, all to be enjoyed on comfortable sofas and in an extended seating area ñ complete with Wi-Fi connection and easy-access power points, ideal for business customers. Continuing to serve authentic Asian cuisine, Peacock Restaurant has also been enhanced, through the use of wood, glass and cloth decorations, along with paintings and framed Chinese artifacts. Finally, Dasman Ballroom is an additional facility which has been developed for events and meetings, with 360sqm of space that can accommodate 200 persons at capacity, or be reconfigured into a variety of configurations. Dasman Ballroom is fully equipped with modern audio-visual and communications equipment, three adjacent meeting rooms, and a pre-function area, as well as separate lobby entrance for car access. As a Radisson Blu hotel, Dasman Ballroom also offers the ‘Experience Meetings’ concept for meetings and events; which promises to deliver high-end products and services, including the main three core components: Brain Box, Brain Food and free internet.


LAIF Convention

ife Abundant International Fountain (LAIF Church) Kuwait invites you to its 2013 Annual Convention star ting from 10th October to 13th October at National Evangelical Church Kuwait (NECK)


Unforgettable Eid experience awaits at Sheraton Kuwait


o celebrate the festivities of Eid AlAdha, Sheraton Kuwait is offering its guests unique cultural experiences of hospitality and dining venues. At Sheraton Kuwait, guests can enjoy a variety of finest global cuisines to titillate every palate whilst listening to live music that captures the happiness of Eid. Enjoy refined Italian dining at Riccardo, relish the taste of exotic India at Bukhara, take pleasure in matchless Lebanese cui-

sine in the warm hospitality of Le Tarbouche and experience extravagant Iranian dishes at Shahrayar in addition to Al-Hambra which offers lavish buffets for breakfast, lunch and dinner at both Sheraton Hotel and Grand Avenue, The Avenues. The English Tea Lounge available in two locations at the Sheraton Hotel and Second Avenue, The Avenues is the perfect venue to head to, for a light snack, coffee or tea in a sophisticated atmosphere.

Compound. This is a power packed and Holy Ghost filled program featuring seminar, music concert and ministration. Come and be blessed. For information please visit our website,


W H AT ’ S O N

Eid Al-Adha with Holiday Inn Salmiya


he Holiday Inn Kuwait Salmiya hotel announced its special tailored packages during the occasion of Eid AlAdha which will offer joyful moments to be spent with the family The hotel guests are invited tounique stay at the hotel rooms and suits enjoying ultimate features such as a free access to the Fitness Center facilities, Swimming Pool and lots of fun for their little ones at the Kid’s Club. Also the management of Holiday Inn Salmiya has announced recently the re-launch of the Friday Brunch featuring a wide variety of live Cooking Stations, unlimited drinks and a lot of activities for the kids. The hotel’s 5 splendid restaurants offers special Set Menus and upgraded buffets during the occasion of Eid where you can

enjoy the best of Sushi & Maki selections at Sakura, The awesome traditional taste of the Chinese cuisine at Tang Chao, You can also take your family back in time and enjoy an array of Lebanese Dishes at Ayam Zaman Restaurant alongside your favorite flavor of Shisha or you can travel to the wild wild west and indulge yourself with a juicy steak at Ribeye Steak House and on top of all the upgraded special buffet at AlDiwan International Restaurant, Holiday Inn Kuwait Salmiya is one of the most preferred destinations for travelers and families who are looking for a getaway cause of its ideal location in the heart of Salmiya where most of the shopping malls, entertainment parks and cafes are. The hotel and its team strives to provide a memorable experience for all its guests.

Embassy Information EMBASSY OF AUSTRALIA The Embassy of Australia has announced that Kuwait citizens can apply for and receive visit visas in 10 working days through All other processing of visas and Immigration matters are handled by the Australian Visa Application Centre located in Al Banwan Building, 4B, 1st Floor, Al Qibla Area, Ali Al Salem Street, Kuwait City. Visit. for more info. The Embassy of Australia does not have a visa or immigration department. All processing of visas and immigration matters is conducted by the Australian Consulate-General in Dubai. Email: (VIS), (Visa Office), Tel: +971 4 205 5900 (VFS), Fax: + 971 4 355 0708 (Visa Office). Notary and passport services are available by appointment. Appointments can be made by calling the Embassy on 22322422. nnnnnnn

Eid Al-Adha celebrations at Marina Hotel Kuwait


arina Hotel invites residents and guests to celebrate Eid AlAdha and experience leisure and fun filled activities with a rich choice of culinary flavors, entertainment and special room packages to make this Eid truly memorable.

Nabil Hammoud, General Manager of the hotel said ‘We wish one and all a joyous Eid and look forward to warmly welcoming our guests and providing them with our highly acclaimed service that will surely make their Eid holidays unforgettable.’ For all those wishing to spend their

holidays at Marina Hotel, can relax in luxurious rooms while taking in the charm of genuine Arabian hospitality. They will have access to the state of the art Coral Reef Health Club. While parents and family members relax, children can participate in various

activities organized by the hotel which include Eid shows, games for adults and kids, magic shows, movie viewing, beach soccer, bouncy castles, trampoline, face painting, sand castle building and much more. Enjoy the relaxed setting of the Six Palms Restaurant and start your morn-

ing with steaming coffee and delicious breakfast buffet featuring international cuisine. Watch authentic innovations spring to life inside the Atlantis Restaurant while relishing the International lunch buffet. Families and friends are invited to enjoy the panoramic views and idyllic mood while savoring the flavors of local cuisine and international specialties. Children will be taken care of at the kid’s corner with and will have their own buffet with a wide variety of specialties. Alternatively, guests can spend lazy afternoons with ‘Eid Afternoon Tea’ at the hotel’s Tea Lounge. Offering a comfortable, casual and relaxed setting, its range of teas, sandwiches and hot mini canapÈs creates an ambience that will make guests want to stay all afternoon. In the evening, indulge yourself with the finest dinner buffet at Six Palms Restaurant with an amazing spread of traditional Arabic and international dishes along with tempting selection of Arabic sweets and mouth watering desserts while listening to the Oriental band and enjoying your shisha. Along with its world-class features and amenities as well as a selection of recreational and relaxation facilities, Marina Hotel Kuwait is the place to be for the entire family as well as groups of friends to share and spend the Eid holidays together.

NBK’s services available during holidays



ational Bank of Kuwait (NBK) has taken all necessary measures to ensure providing customers with the best services during Eid Al-Adha holiday throughout Hala Watani, Mobile Banking (Android, BlackBerry, iPhone and iPad), Online and ATM services. All NBK branches will be closed starting from Monday 14th of October 2013 and will resume work on Sunday 20th of October 2013.after the Eid holidays. Hala Watani, NBK Online and ATM will be available 24 hours and ready to serve customers. Customers can also conduct all their transactions through NBK Mobile Banking application. For customers outside Kuwait, NBK the largest international presence with more than 170 branches worldwide. NBK’s international presence spans many of the world’s leading financial centers including London, Paris, Geneva, New York and Singapore, as well as China (Shanghai). Meanwhile, regional coverage extends to Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, Egypt, Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Turkey.

Celebrate the festive season in Asia’s most dynamic city with Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok


hether looking to splurge on some Christmas shopping, celebrate the New Year countdown at one of the season’s hottest parties, share the festive spirit with the whole family, or simply retreat to the Spa for some “me time,” Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok has everything needed for a fabulous festive season. The Festive Season Package is available from December 22, 2013 to January 3, 2014, and includes daily breakfast for two guests in Aqua or Madison, as well as Executive Club access for two guests when staying four nights or more, including round-the-clock snacks and refreshments, evening cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, a dedicated Concierge service to help guests make the most of their stay in the city and experience the best of what the holidays have to offer, and plenty of other benefits as well. And for guests staying on December 31, the Festive Season Package also includes entry to Bangkok’s most exciting New Year’s Eve party, held in the Lobby of Four Seasons, with live band, Champagne countdown, and the chance to party into the wee hours of the New Year with Bangkok’s bold and beautiful. What better way to celebrate New Year in Asia’s most dynamic city?

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.

EMBASSY OF 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, Al-Qibla 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

EMBASSY OF INDIA The Embassy of India will remain closed on Oct 13, 2013, Sunday on account of Dussehra (Vijaya Dashami). Holiday for Eid Al-Adha will be intimated after declaration of the same. nnnnnnn


The US Embassy in Kuwait has new procedures for obtaining appointments and picking up passports after visa issuance. Beginning August 9, 2013, we now provide an online visa appointment system, live call center, and in-person pick-up facilities in Kuwait. Please monitor our website and social media for additional information. This new system offers more flexibility for travelers to the US and to meet the increase in demand for visa appointments. The general application steps on the new visa appointment system are: 1. Go to (if this is the first time on, you will need to create a profile to login). 2. Please complete your DS-160 Online Visa Application which is available at 3. Please print and take your deposit slip to any Burgan Bank location to pay your visa application fee. 4. Schedule an appointment for your visa interview online at or by phone through the Call Center (at +965-2227-1673). 5. If you need to change or cancel your appointment, please do so 24 hours beforehand, as a courtesy to other applicants. For more information, please visit the US Embassy website - - as it is the best source of information regarding these changes. nnnnnnn

EMBASSY OF BHUTAN The Royal Bhutanese Embassy in the State of Kuwait would like to inform all concerned that its chancery has shifted to its new premises in South Surra, Al-Salaam, Block 3, Street 308, House 3. Telephone:25213601- 25213602,Fax: 25213603 and Email: nnnnnnn

EMBASSY OF BANGLADESH The Embassy of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh in Kuwait will remain closed from Monday to Thursday, October 14-17, 2013 on the occasion of Holy Eid-ul-Adha.



03:15 Bondi Vet 04:05 ER Vets 04:30 ER Vets 04:55 Animal Battlegrounds 05:20 Baboons With Bill Bailey 05:45 Roaring With Pride 06:35 Call Of The Wildman 07:00 Monkey Life 07:25 Bondi Vet 08:15 The Most Extreme 09:10 Your Pet Wants This, Too! 10:05 Big Five Challenge 11:00 Animal Cops Houston 11:55 Animal Battlegrounds 12:20 Call Of The Wildman 12:50 Animal Airport 13:15 Animal Airport 13:45 Weird Creatures With Nick Baker 14:40 Big Five Challenge 15:30 Baboons With Bill Bailey 16:00 Monkey Life 16:30 The Most Extreme 17:25 Talk To The Animals 18:20 Pandamonium 19:15 Monkey Life 19:40 Call Of The Wildman 20:10 Animal Battlegrounds 20:35 Baboons With Bill Bailey 21:05 Big Five Challenge 22:00 Snow Leopards Of Leafy London 22:25 Snow Leopards Of Leafy London 22:55 Mekong: Soul Of A River 23:50 Animal Cops Houston

00:45 Crime Scene Wild 01:35 Untamed & Uncut 02:25 Big Five Challenge BBC Entertainment 03:15 Rev. 03:45 Last Of The Summer Wine 04:15 The Weakest Link 05:00 Tweenies 05:20 Boogie Beebies 05:35 The Large Family 05:45 Nina And The Neurons 06:00 Jackanory Junior 06:15 Tweenies 06:35 Boogie Beebies 06:50 The Large Family 07:00 Nina And The Neurons 07:15 Jackanory Junior 07:30 Last Of The Summer Wine 08:00 Roger & Val Have Just Got In 08:30 The World Of Stonehenge 09:20 Eastenders 09:50 Doctors 10:20 Himalaya With Michael Palin 11:10 The Weakest Link 11:55 Last Of The Summer Wine 12:25 The World Of Stonehenge 13:15 Roger & Val Have Just Got In 13:45 Eastenders 14:15 Doctors 14:45 The Weakest Link 15:30 Himalaya With Michael Palin 16:20 The World Of Stonehenge 17:10 Eastenders 17:40 Doctors 18:10 The Weakest Link 19:00 One Foot In The Grave 19:30 Dead Boss 20:00 Mistresses 20:50 Lead Balloon 21:20 Alan Carr: Chatty Man 22:05 Alan Partridge’s Mid-Morning Matters 22:30 Bedlam 23:15 The Weakest Link

03:15 The Hairy Bikers Ride Again 03:40 Great British Menu 04:05 Cash In The Attic 04:50 Bargain Hunt 05:35 Britain’s Dream Homes 06:30 Great British Menu 07:00 Extreme Makeover: Home Edition 07:45 Bargain Hunt 08:30 Homes Under The Hammer

09:25 Bill’s Kitchen: Notting Hill 09:50 Rick Stein’s Far Eastern Odyssey 10:40 Come Dine With Me 11:30 Celebrity MasterChef 12:30 Extreme Makeover: Home Edition 13:15 Antiques Roadshow 14:10 Holmes On Homes 15:50 Bargain Hunt 16:35 Cash In The Attic 17:20 Antiques Roadshow 18:15 Homes Under The Hammer 19:10 Food & Drink 19:40 Food Glorious Food 20:30 Come Dine With Me 21:20 Antiques Roadshow 22:15 Bargain Hunt 23:00 Cash In The Attic 23:45 Homes Under The Hammer 00:40 Come Dine With Me 01:30 Celebrity MasterChef 02:00 The Hairy Bikers Ride Again 02:25 Britain’s Dream Homes

03:00 Mythbusters 03:50 Border Security 04:15 Storage Hunters 04:40 Baggage Battles 05:05 How Do They Do It? 05:30 How It’s Made 06:00 Sons Of Guns 07:00 Mythbusters 07:50 Yukon Men 08:40 American Chopper 09:30 Border Security 09:55 Storage Hunters 10:20 Baggage Battles 10:45 How Do They Do It? 11:10 How It’s Made 11:35 Bear Grylls: Escape From Hell 12:25 Ed Stafford: Naked And Marooned 13:15 Car vs Wild 14:05 Border Security 14:30 Storage Hunters 14:55 Baggage Battles 15:20 Finding Bigfoot 16:10 American Chopper 17:00 Ultimate Survival 17:50 Dirty Jobs 18:40 Mythbusters 19:30 Sons Of Guns 20:20 Storage Hunters 20:45 Baggage Battles 21:10 How Do They Do It? 21:35 How It’s Made 22:00 Ben Earl: Trick Artist

03:00 03:45 04:30 05:20 06:10 07:00 07:50 08:15 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

03:00 03:25 03:45 04:30 05:20 06:10

Deadly Women I Almost Got Away With It Dr G: Medical Examiner Ghost Lab Nightmare Next Door Mystery Diagnosis Street Patrol Street Patrol Real Emergency Calls Who On Earth... On The Case With Paula Zahn Solved Disappeared Mystery Diagnosis Street Patrol Street Patrol Forensic Detectives On The Case With Paula Zahn Real Emergency Calls Who On Earth... Disappeared Solved Forensic Detectives On The Case With Paula Zahn On The Case With Paula Zahn Nightmare Next Door Couples Who Kill Extreme Drug Smuggling

I Was Murdered I Was Murdered I Almost Got Away With It Dr G: Medical Examiner Ghost Lab Nightmare Next Door

07:00 07:50 08:15 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 00:30 01:20 02:10

Mystery Diagnosis Street Patrol Street Patrol Real Emergency Calls Who On Earth Did I Marry? On The Case With Paula Zahn Solved 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 Solved Forensic Detectives On The Case With Paula Zahn Dr G: Medical Examiner Nightmare Next Door Couples Who Kill On The Case With Paula Zahn Nightmare Next Door I Almost Got Away With It Dr G: Medical Examiner Ghost Lab On The Case With Paula Zahn

03:35 Thunder Races 04:25 Through The Wormhole With Morgan Freeman 05:15 The Gadget Show 05:40 How Tech Works 06:05 Superships 07:00 Deadliest Space Weather 07:50 Super Comet: After The Impact 08:40 The Gadget Show 09:05 How Tech Works 09:30 Super Comet: After The Impact 10:25 Superships 11:20 Thunder Races 12:10 Through The Wormhole With Morgan Freeman 13:00 Super Comet: After The Impact 13:50 Sci-Fi Science 14:20 The Gadget Show 14:45 How Tech Works 15:10 Deadliest Space Weather 16:00 Sport Science 16:55 Superships 17:45 Thunder Races 18:35 Space Pioneer 19:30 Deadliest Space Weather 20:20 Super Comet: After The Impact 21:10 The Gadget Show 21:35 How Tech Works 22:00 Deadliest Space Weather 22:50 Super Comet: After The Impact 23:40 Dark Matters 00:30 Sci-Fi Science 01:00 The Gadget Show 01:25 How Tech Works 01:50 Deadliest Space Weather 02:45 Super Comet: After The Impact

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

Survivorman: Ten Days American Car Prospector Decoding Disaster Out Of Egypt Survivorman: Ten Days American Car Prospector How We Invented The World Commander In Chief Ultimate Warfare Out Of Egypt American Car Prospector How We Invented The World Decoding Disaster History Cold Case USA The First World War From Out Of Egypt How We Invented The World Survivorman: Ten Days Empire American Car Prospector Doomsday - World War I Empire Baker Boys: Inside The Surge Murder Shift Doomsday - World War I Empire Baker Boys: Inside The Surge


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

The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody Sonny With A Chance Sonny With A Chance Suite Life On Deck Suite Life On Deck Wizards Of Waverly Place Wizards Of Waverly Place Austin And Ally Austin And Ally A.N.T. Farm A.N.T. Farm Jessie Good Luck Charlie Sofia The First Doc McStuffins Mickey Mouse Clubhouse A.N.T. Farm A.N.T. Farm Jessie Jessie Good Luck Charlie Good Luck Charlie Gravity Falls Shake It Up Shake It Up Austin And Ally Austin And Ally A.N.T. Farm Shake It Up My Babysitter’s A Vampire That’s So Raven Gravity Falls Jessie Violetta Dog With A Blog Austin And Ally Gravity Falls Shake It Up That’s So Raven A.N.T. Farm Violetta Jessie My Babysitter’s A Vampire Austin And Ally Shake It Up That’s So Raven Jessie A.N.T. Farm Good Luck Charlie Wizards Of Waverly Place Wizards Of Waverly Place The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody Sonny With A Chance Sonny With A Chance Suite Life On Deck Suite Life On Deck Wizards Of Waverly Place Wizards Of Waverly Place

03:20 Handy Manny 03:40 Special Agent Oso 03:50 Special Agent Oso 04:00 Timmy Time 04:10 Imagination Movers 04:35 Little Einsteins 05:00 Jungle Junction 05:15 Jungle Junction 05:30 Little Einsteins 05:50 Special Agent Oso 06:00 Special Agent Oso 06:15 Jungle Junction 06:30 Jungle Junction 06:45 Handy Manny 07:00 Special Agent Oso 07:15 Jungle Junction 07:30 Higglytown Heroes 07:45 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 08:10 New Adventures Of Winnie The Pooh 08:35 Jake And The Neverland Pirates 08:50 Doc McStuffins 09:05 Doc McStuffins 09:20 Zou 09:35 Henry Hugglemonster 09:50 Henry Hugglemonster 10:00 Sofia The First 10:25 Mouk 10:40 Jake And The Neverland Pirates 10:55 New Adventures Of Winnie The Pooh 11:20 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 11:45 Mouk 12:00 Winnie The Pooh: Tales Of Friendship 12:05 Higglytown Heroes 12:20 The Hive 12:30 Doc McStuffins 12:45 Doc McStuffins 13:00 Zou 13:15 Jake And The Neverland Pirates 13:30 Henry Hugglemonster 13:45 Henry Hugglemonster 13:55 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 14:20 New Adventures Of Winnie The Pooh 14:45 Higglytown Heroes 14:55 The Hive 15:05 Doc McStuffins 15:20 Zou 15:35 Jake And The Neverland Pirates 15:50 Mouk 16:05 Art Attack 16:30 Goof Troop 16:55 Tarzan 17:20 Quack Pack 17:45 Lilo And Stitch 18:10 Henry Hugglemonster 18:25 Henry Hugglemonster 18:35 Sofia The First 19:00 Winnie The Pooh: Tales Of Friendship 19:05 Pajanimals 19:25 Doc McStuffins 19:40 Winnie The Pooh: Tales Of Friendship 19:45 Zou 20:00 Pajanimals 20:15 Jake And The Neverland Pirates 20:30 Goof Troop 20:55 Tarzan 21:20 Quack Pack 21:45 Lilo And Stitch 22:10 Sofia The First 22:35 Doc McStuffins 22:50 Pajanimals 23:05 Winnie The Pooh: Tales Of Friendship 23:10 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 23:35 Jake And The Neverland Pirates 23:50 Zou 00:10 Doc McStuffins 00:25 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 00:50 Jungle Junction 01:10 Handy Manny 01:30 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 01:55 Winnie The Pooh: Tales Of Friendship 02:00 Little Einsteins 02:25 Special Agent Oso 02:40 Special Agent Oso 02:50 Imagination Movers

04:30 Jelly T 06:00 Winx 08:00 The Happy Cricket 10:00 Big Top Scooby-Doo! 11:30 Tommy & Oscar 13:00 Who Framed Roger Rabbit 14:45 The Elf Who Stole Christmas 16:00 Alvin And The Chipmunks: Chipwrecked 18:00 Big Top Scooby-Doo! 20:00 Twigson 22:00 The Elf Who Stole Christmas 23:30 Alvin And The Chipmunks: Chipwrecked 01:00 The Happy Cricket 02:45 Twigson

03:45 Skyfall 06:15 Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax 08:00 Carnage 09:30 Rise Of The Guardians 11:30 Skyfall 14:00 A Monster In Paris 16:00 Carnage 18:00 The Double 20:00 Another Earth 22:00 The Awakening 00:00 Dungeons & Dragons: The Book Of Vile Darkness 02:00 The Double


06:00 Kid vs Kat 06:10 Scaredy Squirrel 06:35 Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja 07:00 Max Steel 07:25 Phineas And Ferb 07:50 Slugterra 08:15 Crash & Bernstein 08:40 Kickin’ IT 09:05 Kickin IT 09:30 Phineas And Ferb 09:55 Phineas And Ferb 10:20 Lab Rats 10:45 Lab Rats 11:10 Pokemon Bw: Adventures In Unova 11:35 Max Steel 12:00 Zeke & Luther 12:25 Zeke & Luther 12:50 Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja 13:15 Scaredy Squirrel 13:40 Pair Of Kings 14:05 Pair Of Kings 14:30 Phineas And Ferb 14:40 Phineas And Ferb 14:55 Phineas And Ferb 15:05 Phineas And Ferb 15:20 Pokemon Bw: Adventures In Unova 15:45 Max Steel 16:10 Pair Of Kings 16:35 Crash & Bernstein 17:00 Lab Rats 17:30 Kickin IT 18:00 Kickin IT 18:25 Phineas And Ferb 18:35 Phineas And Ferb 18:50 Phineas And Ferb 19:00 Phineas And Ferb 19:15 Slugterra 19:40 Crash & Bernstein 20:05 Ultimate Spider-Man 20:30 Max Steel 20:55 Pair Of Kings 21:20 Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja 21:45 Phineas And Ferb 22:10 Phineas And Ferb 22:20 Phineas And Ferb 22:35 Scaredy Squirrel 23:00 Programmes Start At 6:00am KSA

03:00 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 03:25 Food Wars 03:50 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 04:15 United Tastes Of America 04:40 Chopped 05:30 Iron Chef America 06:10 Food Network Challenge 07:00 Unwrapped 07:25 Unwrapped 07:50 Tastiest Places To Chowdown 08:15 Kid In A Candy Store 08:40 Jonathan Phang’s Caribbean Cookbook 09:05 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 09:30 The Next Iron Chef 10:20 Luke Nguyen’s Vietnam 10:45 Aarti Party 11:10 Unwrapped 11:35 Unique Sweets 12:00 Amazing Wedding Cakes 12:50 Reza’s African Kitchen 13:15 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 13:40 Charly’s Cake Angels 14:05 Siba’s Table 14:30 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 14:55 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 15:20 Symon’s Suppers 15:45 Chopped 16:35 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 17:00 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 17:25 Andy Bates American Street Feasts 17:50 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 18:15 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 18:40 Guy’s Big Bite 19:05 Siba’s Table 19:30 Charly’s Cake Angels 19:55 Recipes That Rock 20:20 Chopped

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Chopped Charly’s Cake Angels Charly’s Cake Angels Unique Sweets Unique Sweets Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives Food Wars Tastiest Places To Chowdown Outrageous Food Charly’s Cake Angels Charly’s Cake Angels Unique Sweets

03:00 The Colbert Report 03:30 Louie 04:00 Legit 04:30 The New Normal 05:00 Hot In Cleveland 05:30 Raising Hope 06:00 Seinfeld 06:30 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 07:30 All Of Us 08:00 The Neighbors 08:30 Friends 09:00 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 10:00 Seinfeld 10:30 All Of Us 11:00 Hot In Cleveland 11:30 The Crazy Ones 12:00 Arrested Development 12:30 Friends 13:00 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 14:00 The Neighbors 14:30 Seinfeld 15:00 All Of Us 15:30 Friends 16:00 Raising Hope 16:30 The Crazy Ones 17:00 Arrested Development 17:30 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart 18:00 The Colbert Report 18:30 The Neighbors 19:00 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 20:00 Breaking In 20:30 Whitney 21:00 Whitney 22:00 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 23:00 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart 23:30 The Colbert Report 00:00 Louie 00:30 Legit 01:00 The New Normal 01:30 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 02:30 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart

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

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Scandal Grey’s Anatomy Once Upon A Time 24 Switched At Birth Suits Grey’s Anatomy Once Upon A Time Emmerdale Coronation Street The Ellen DeGeneres Show Suits 24 Emmerdale Coronation Street The Ellen DeGeneres Show Suits Warehouse 13 Perception Justified Scandal 24

Taxi Driver Source Code Pizza Man True Justice: Angel Of Death The Speed Of Thought Darkman True Justice: Angel Of Death Hide And Seek Darkman Starship Troopers: Invasion The Keeper

02:00 Exorcismus OSN Movies Action HD 04:00 Source Code 06:00 Pizza Man 08:00 True Justice: Angel Of Death 10:00 The Speed Of Thought 12:00 Darkman 14:00 True Justice: Angel Of Death 16:00 Hide And Seek 18:00 Darkman 20:00 Starship Troopers: Invasion 22:00 The Keeper 00:00 Exorcismus

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Chasing Liberty Sorority Wars Toys Mr. Destiny Chasing Liberty Today’s Special Mr. Destiny Norbit Detroit Rock City Cherry High School Detroit Rock City

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The Man Inside Dreamgirls Love Takes Wing I’ve Loved You So Long Klitschko No Surrender The Wishing Well One Angry Juror Hideaways 360 The Disappearance Of Alice One Angry Juror

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The Chorus Dead Lines And Soon The Darkness Will Tricks Of A Woman Virtual Lies Would Be Kings A Better Life Remember Sunday Margaret Best Laid Plans A Better Life

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Hide Away Marley The Rich Man’s Wife Gandhi Money For Nothing The Imposter Jakob The Liar Money For Nothing Rabbit Hole Gone Mystery, Alaska Jakob The Liar

03:00 Planet Ocean 05:00 Paranorman 07:00 Of Two Minds 09:00 You Got Served: Beat The World 11:00 Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted 13:00 Five 15:00 Joyful Noise 17:00 You Got Served: Beat The World 19:00 Premium Rush 21:00 A Dark Truth 23:00 That’s My Boy 01:00 Colombiana

04:00 Trans World Sport 05:00 The Presidents Cup Highlights 06:00 AFL Premiership Highlights 07:00 Darts Grand Prix 11:00 NRL Full Time 11:30 Futbol Mundial 12:00 Currie Cup 14:00 Challenge Series Golf Highlights 14:30 The Rugby Championship 16:30 The Presidents Cup Highlights 17:30 Super League 20:00 NRL Full Time 20:30 Futbol Mundial 21:00 Live Darts Grand Prix 01:00 European Tour Weekly 01:30 Inside The PGA Tour 02:00 Trans World Sport

04:00 NRL Premiership 06:30 Total Rugby 07:00 Champions League Twenty20 10:00 NRL Premiership 12:30 The Rugby Championship 14:30 The Rugby Championship 16:30 ICC Cricket 360 17:00 Currie Cup 19:00 UFC - Unleashed 20:00 NHL 22:00 Futbol Mundial 22:30 WWE Bottom Line 23:30 This Week In WWE 00:00 The Presidents Cup Highlights 01:00 PGA European Tour Highlights 02:00 Champions League Twenty20

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A Patch Of Blue Clash By Night 20,000 Years In Sing Sing The Merry Widow Now, Voyager Anchors Aweigh Clash By Night Mildred Pierce The Unsinkable Molly Brown The Sandpiper The Formula Seven Days In May The Formula

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

The Food Truck The Food Truck Bizarre Foods America Xtreme Waterparks Xtreme Waterparks World’s Greatest Motorcycle

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Globe Trekker Departures Airport 24/7: Miami Airport 24/7: Miami World’s Greatest Motorcycle Xtreme Waterparks Xtreme Waterparks Ultimate Braai Master Bizarre Foods America International House Hunters International House Hunters International House Hunters International House Hunters Hotel Impossible Soul Seeker Ultimate Braai Master Bizarre Foods America International House Hunters International House Hunters Descending Travel Testers Airport 24/7: Miami Airport 24/7: Miami Xtreme Waterparks Xtreme Waterparks World’s Greatest Motorcycle Off Limits

Dead Or Alive Crocodile King Fish Warrior Dangerous Encounters Croc Invasion Zambezi Fish Warrior Dangerous Encounters Croc Invasion World’s Deadliest Killer Three Monster Fish Shocking Sharks World’s Weirdest Croc Labyrinth Caught Barehanded Dangerous Encounters Mother Croc World’s Deadliest Killer Three Phantom Wolverine Monster Croc Hunt World’s Weirdest


s ta rs CROSSWORD 335

STAR TRACK Aries (March 21-April 19) There are challenges today. Without challenges, we never would know our scope of capabilities. You could be tempted by a pretty face or pretty words-caution is the best path to take for now. Not perhaps a good time for you to try out new things or break away from an old routine. If you want to be remembered well when you leave this place of business, you need to continue on the path you are on and dutifully carry out the plans that others make. Someday you will be able to rise above your present job by an accomplishment of your own making. You will begin soon to think on how to help your company prosper. Read books or watch when others make a presentation. Formulate a plan with paper and use overheads. Success will be yours.

Taurus (April 20-May 20) Rewarding days make up for all the stress that comes with those challenging days. This is a rewarding day in which you can grab the attention or enjoy the benefits. You are at your most practical when it comes to working with others. You have an objective and reasonable point of view in many subjects. You may be the one that is asked to travel to a foreign country and sway the audience to purchase what your company sells. If you have been thinking about a new deal, system or project, it is important to speak up about it now--before you are asked to travel. A package on your doorstep this evening may have gotten lost or misguided. You will know just what to do and may even find a pleasant surprise at the end of your search.

Gemini (May 21-June 20)

ACROSS 1. An Indian unit of length having different values in different localities. 4. Make legal. 12. A master's degree in business. 15. Any high mountain. 16. Outer membrane covering an axon. 17. Take in solid food. 18. A federal agency established to regulate the release of new foods and health-related products. 19. Large high frilly cap with a full crown. 20. An Indian side dish of yogurt and chopped cucumbers and spices. 22. Genus of Australian woody vines having showy red or purplish flowers. 24. The branch of computer science that deal with writing computer programs that can solve problems creatively. 26. A colorless and odorless inert gas. 27. A sock knitted or woven with a diamondshaped pattern. 30. A port in southwestern Scotland. 34. Any of numerous local fertility and nature deities worshipped by ancient Semitic peoples. 37. A member of the Siouan people formerly living in the Missouri river valley in NE Nebraska. 39. Having three dimensions. 41. Wild sheep of northern Africa. 43. Valuable fiber plant of East Indies now widespread in cultivation. 46. A constellation in the southern hemisphere near Telescopium and Norma. 47. An artificial language that is a revision and simplification of Esperanto. 48. The blood group whose red cells carry both the A and B antigens. 49. English writer who is remembered for her biography of Charlotte Bronte (1810-1865). 52. Any of several fleet black-and-white striped African equines. 55. Small buffalo of the Celebes having small straight horns. 58. An informal term for a father. 59. A flat wing-shaped process or winglike part of an organism. 61. A white soft metallic element that tarnishes readily. 64. Common Indian weaverbird. 67. Being one more than fifty. 69. Used of a single unit or thing. 71. The content of cognition. 73. Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey). 77. The elementary stages of any subject (usually plural). 78. 3 to 30 gigahertz. 79. Youthful appearance in an old person. 80. (British) A waterproof raincoat made of rubberized fabric. 81. 10 hao equal 1 dong. 82. The quality of being alike. 83. A loose sleeveless outer garment made from aba cloth. DOWN 1. Czech novelist who wrote in German about a nightmarish world of isolated and troubled individuals (1883-1924). 2. Advanced in years. 3. Leap. jerk, bang (dialectal). 4. In a weak and unconvincing manner.

5. The outer germ layer that develops into skin and nervous tissue. 6. A desert in central Asia. 7. Type genus of the Alcidae comprising solely the razorbill. 8. A unit of length of thread or yarn. 9. The striking of one body against another. 10. A gray lustrous metallic element of the rare earth group. 11. The sense organ for hearing and equilibrium. 12. Japanese ornamental tree with fragrant white or pink blossoms and small yellow fruits. 13. A Chadic language spoken south of Lake Chad. 14. Essential oil or perfume obtained from flowers. 21. A farewell remark. 23. City in Sudan. 25. Being one more than two. 28. The act of scanning. 29. A polymer of vinyl chloride used instead of rubber in electric cables. 31. According to the Old Testament he was a pagan king of Israel and husband of Jezebel (9th century BC). 32. Cause a floating log to rotate by treading. 33. A burn cause by hot liquid or steam. 35. American poet (born in England) (19071973). 36. (Philippine) A dish of marinated vegetables and meat or fish. 38. Jordan's port. 40. English monk and scholar (672-735). 42. A nucleic acid consisting of large molecules shaped like a double helix. 44. How long something has existed. 45. King of Saudi Arabia since 1982 (born in 1922). 50. Fastener consisting of a resinous composition that is plastic when warm. 51. A family of Sino-Tibetan languages spoken in southeastern Asia. 53. A Hindu prince or king in India. 54. A word for chaos or fiasco borrowed from modern Hebrew (where it is a loan word from Russian). 56. Valuable source of caviar and isinglass. 57. A soft silvery metallic element of the alkali earth group. 60. Native to Egypt but cultivated widely for its aromatic seeds and the oil from them used medicinally and as a flavoring in cookery. 62. Cubes of meat marinated and cooked on a skewer usually with vegetables. 63. An indehiscent fruit derived from a single ovary having one or many seeds within a fleshy wall or pericarp. 65. Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey). 66. A port in western Israel on the Mediterranean. 68. A distinct part that can be specified separately in a group of things that could be enumerated on a list. 70. (Greek mythology) Goddess of discord. 72. Fallow deer. 74. An associate degree in applied science. 75. A metal-bearing mineral valuable enough to be mined. 76. An association of countries in the western hemisphere.


While it would be easy to get into positions that would encourage long conversations, you will push to finish any projects for now. If you do not want to work overtime this evening, it might be wise to enjoy several short breaks so as to meet a particular deadline, instead of the usual long lunch. You may find that you have developed a knack for being in the right place at the right time, at least for today. You may overhear some very good news that will mean more business. Much is accomplished and you may even win over the admiration of others for your determination and focus. You may be the cook tonight. Consider a light meal, perhaps fish. Pleasant company and amusing stories put a pleasant end to this very busy day.

Cancer (June 21-July 22) There is an open door to success and your willingness to travel just may be the ticket. Connections with people on a grand scale, for example, play a big part in your life now. This grand scale may mean that you are headed for a convention, out-of-state or out-of-town. Perhaps you are teaching an unusually large class via the internet. Whatever the case, you enjoy involving yourself with the changes that have taken place this year. A rollercoaster year may mean things will settle down a bit for next year and they may do just that. This evening you may want to look over your goals and the schedule you have made for yourself that shows what you have earned and the goals you have met. You will be pleased at your progress!

Leo (July 23-August 22) Learn techniques that will relieve stress and you will be helping yourself to live longer and feel more at ease. Responsibilities and outside pressures are just a part of life but moving forward and knowing when to accept change will aid you in maintaining a sense of well-being. Your positive outlook is a plus! At home you will have the opportunity to weed out the things that do not serve you well. This may include the things you have held onto, thinking you will use them one day. Consider having a garage sale this next weekend . . . There is plenty of time to cull through your closets and cabinets and prepare a price for your items. It is always a good time to pull in a little extra money. You may even get some cooperation from your family members.

Virgo (August 23-September 22) A balance is needed in a love relationship now, shared responsibilities is the answer. Success in your career depends on your own ambition. You are able to use good common sense--you can feel the most effective trends and make the right moves. Now is the time to get ahead by taking action--but think first. It is possible for you to become a buyer or a manager over a department and if you write out a reason why you think you would help the company, you will get an interview, plus a trial run at your goal. You will prosper by pursuing your ideals and dreams. Take your breaks and make a point to walk with nature later today. This will help to bring about a focus and to relax. Fish, waterfowl and lizards bring lots of smiles later today.

Word Search

Libra (September 23-October 22) Perhaps there is a sense of challenge or blockage just now. You may not find the support you would really like. Take into account that this blockage or challenge is temporary. Just as a gardener needs to clear the field and fertilize the crops our mind needs rest and enrichment as well. Times of difficulties in our life can be changed to success with a positive, creative and stick-to-itiveness attitude. The family scene may also be in something of a state of change this evening. You might use the scene at the gardeners for your family as well. Perhaps a review and refreshment of routine and habits would be good for all. For example, fresh water, exercising together and a change in food may be needed. Guide yourself by priorities tonight.

Scorpio (October 23-November 21) The power of organization on a social scale regarding business or perhaps politics seems to take on a lot of attention as you enter into a new cycle. You could be working for a charity organization and your creative input is remarkable. During a meeting to find a new slant or some attention magnet for obtaining contributions, you sketch a few ideas and people respond in positive ways. Remember, this could also be in politics so you will be more informed than most and can represent or speak for your delegate. Remember that tiny causes can lead to big effects. Profound changes are happening on the personal level--psychological and perhaps physical as well. It is as though you are transforming yourself into a popular and influential person.

Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) Healthy communications today create opportunities to open up to new ideas or thoughts. Now is a good time to rethink the path to your goals or perhaps to revise your goals. This could only be a need to fine-tune the end result that you want to achieve. You may find that your ideas and thoughts run counter to what is going on around you, resulting in a lack of support. There could be changes that require young people to take a part in developing the end results. Mental patterns and communication skills play a major role in your life. They can change things forever--so make sure you develop your highest potential in these areas. A neighbor or sibling could undergo some kind of transformation or your neighborhood may be in a redevelopment phase.

Capricorn (December 22-January 19) Professional advice can bring you some interesting insights. This is a time during which you are unusually motivated or driven in new and unexpected directions. You could receive unexpected backing and, in general, your efforts are successful in reaching new heights of originality. This is a good day, with lots of energy and ambition. This is the day to start new projects or push forward with those already in motion. If you are looking for a new home, consider an old one to remake like you want it. You will find lots of areas for storage and wonderful tall rooms for the plants that are so necessary in re-supplying us with fresh oxygen after a day at work. Think about how a four-poster bed would look--opportunity arises.

Aquarius (January 20- February 18) A little dieting is usually all you need. Today and tomorrow there are energies present that are working in your favor toward good health. A relationship problem can be solved through some new insight you receive before you begin your workday. You may decide to set aside some time this next weekend for just you and your sweetheart. It can be a wonderfully romantic sort of time. Your workday is successful. Some sort of investigative work, journalism or detective work clears away a lot of old questions that the company you work for may need to know. Not everyone does the detective sort of job, but the energies are available for anyone wanting to uncover the truth or to discover just how some important equipment or program works.

Pisces (February 19-March 20) This is a day that you will be able to use wisely. This is also a day that is not too lazy or too stressful--there is time for accomplishing tasks or setting things up to work in your favor. Innovations--new and possibly unconventional approaches to being productive or making money--are in order. If you own a shop that is among other shops, think of some quirky little thing that might set your shop apart from others. New customers will be in your shop before you know it. A change in financial status is possible and can lead in unexpected directions. Real estate represents an interest that you keep picking up and examining. Get advice on taking the exam; you may be pleased with how much you really know. This is a good evening for love.

Yesterday’s Solution

Yesterday’s Solution

Daily SuDoku

Yesterday’s Solution

Classifieds WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 9, 2013


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CHANGE OF NAME From Adeb Shams - as per the birth certificate - 15days-old to Adeb Ibrahim. Tel: 66993190. (C 4530) 6-10-2013 I, Livina Fatima Baretto, resident of Goa and holder of Indian Passport No. K4654795 issued at Kuwait, hereby change my surname to Da Costa. Hence I will be called Livina Fatima Da Costa from now onwards. (C 4528) 5-10-2013 I, Shahjahan Malek Ali Sadek D/O Sayyed Mohammad Jaffery, holder of Indian Passport No. Z1886955 have changed my name from Shahjahan Malek Ali Sadek to Shahjahan Sayyed Mohammad Jaffery. (C 4527) 3-10-2013

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Australian/Lebanese man invite proposal from God fearing Arab women, single or divorce. Contact email: (C 4532) 7-10-2013

I, Palleemeera Mutterahamath, holder of Indian Passport No. L0083056, issued at Hyderabad, A.P, hereby change my name to Palleemeera Mukthiyar. (C 4525)

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employed in Kuwait. Contact email: (4531)

No: 15953

MATRIMONIAL Orthodox parents in Kuwait invite marriage proposals for their son, 27yrs/177cm/70kgs, MBA employed in a reputed bank in Kuwait from Orthodox/Jacobite/Martho ma parents B.Tech/MCA/MBA/M.Com God fearing and religious minded girls 23-25 yrs

Directorate General of Civil Aviation Home Page (



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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

23915883 23715414 23726558


Modern Jahra Madina Munawara

Jahra-Block 3 Lot 1 Jahra-Block 92

24575518 24566622


Ahlam Khaldiya Coop

Fahad Al-Salem St Khaldiya Coop

22436184 24833967


New Shifa Ferdous Coop Modern Safwan

Farwaniya Block 40 Ferdous Coop Old Kheitan Block 11

24734000 24881201 24726638

Tariq Hana Ikhlas Hawally & Rawdha Ghadeer Kindy Ibn Al-Nafis Mishrif Coop Salwa Coop

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LIFESTYLE G o s s i p

Kate Hudson’s son wants to wear green tux to wedding K

ate Hudson’s son wants to wear a “neon-green tux” at her wedding to Matt Bellamy. The 34-year-old actress got engaged to the Muse frontman in April 2011 and although she is remaining tight-lipped on the date of her nuptials Kate says nine-year-old Ryder - her child with ex-husband Chris Robinson - is ready to make a bold fashion choice on the big day. During an appearance on ‘The Ellen DeGeneres Show’ - which will air today - she revealed: “He apparently wants to wear a neon green tux. He loves neon green. He wants to wear neon green with black. That’s pretty cool. He’s a bit of a fashion boy.” Kate admits Ryder is very excited about the wedding although she thinks he’s more interested in the reception than the fact his mother and Matt are making a commitment to one another. The ‘Bride Wars’ star - who has a two-year-old son Bingham with Matt - said: “I think he looks forward to more the party than actually the idea of us getting married. He seems to, like, have it really planned out what he’s wearing.” Kate - whose mother is Goldie Hawn and stepfather is Kurt Russell - has said she won’t reveal any details of her nuptials and plans to say “I do” in secret. She previously stated: “I think until the day we get married, the answer is going to be, ‘We have no intention right now of getting married.’ And then you’ll find out we got married.”

Eminem’s daughter crowned Homecoming Queen


Urban to launch guitar line with HSN K

eith Urban is looking to strum up a little side business with a new line of guitars. The “Stupid Boy” singer and “American Idol” judge is pairing up with HSN, the company behind the Home Shopping Network, to launch a new line of guitars available Nov 3. The guitar line, dubbed the Urban Guitar Collection, aims to provide affordable instruments to aspiring musicians. It includes two versions of the Phoenix Edition guitar - an acoustic model and an acoustic/electric version - available in a variety of finishes. Two one-hour instructional DVDs will be included with the guitars. “I’ve watched some of the greatest guitarists in the world perform, and I’ve seen people just learning how to play,” Urban said of the new endeavor. “The looks on their faces are almost always the same, and the connection with the instrument is genuine.” Along with giving affordable options to aspiring pickers, the Urban Guitar Collection has a charitable aspect - portions of the proceeds will go to the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation, which donates instruments to under-funded music programs, and the Grammy Foundation, which cultivates “the understanding, appreciation and advancement of the contribution of recorded music to American culture” through programs and activities. Urban returns to the airwaves on “American Idol” with returning judge Jennifer Lopez and newcomer Harry Connick Jr in January.

minem’s daughter was made Homecoming Queen. Hailie Scott, the rapper’s 17-year-old daughter with exwife Kim Scott - received the school honor at Chippewa Valley High School in Michigan at the end of last week. Both her mother and father watched Hailie receive her crown alongside Homecoming King Tyler Knepp. A source told local paper The Macomb Daily: “Hailie came out with her mother Kim [Scott] when she was introduced with all the other kids but her father watched from inside the school because he didn’t want to cause a scene - he wanted Hailie to have her own moment.” As is traditional at Homecoming events, the crowning was followed by an American Football game, which Eminem - who is poised to release his ‘Marshall Mathers LP 2’ album - also watched from one of the classrooms, away from public view. Explaining how he peaked out at one point the source added: “He opened the door and looked out like - ‘That’s my daughter!’ He just looked like a proud father.” Parents of students who are friends with Hailie describe her as a smart, athletic and caring and say she is able to live a normal life in the area. One friend’s parent said: “I think all of the kids in the district have shown respect to their family and just let her live a normal life here out of the spotlight. “I think that speaks very highly of the Chippewa Valley community to not try to take advantage of their fame.” Hailie is Eminem’s only biological daughter with Kim, but he is also adoptive father to Kim’s daughter Whitney, from a previous relationship, and Kim’s sister’s daughter, Alaina.

Billy Ray Cyrus: Miley happy after liam split


illy Ray Cyrus says his daughter Miley Cyrus is the “happiest she’s ever been in her life” since splitting from Liam Hemsworth. Miley and her actor fiancÈ called off their engagement in September following months of attempts to salvage the relationship which had been on and off since they met on the set of their film ‘The Last Song’ in June 2009. ‘Achy Break Heart’ singer Billy Ray says rather than wallow in self-pity about the failed romance his 20year-old daughter seems to have a new lease of life. During an interview on ‘Entertainment Tonight’ on Monday he said: “All I know for sure is I heard my daughter say today she’s the happiest she’s ever been in her life immediately following (the split) ... Somewhere along the stress and strain of different things I didn’t see her smiling as often for a little while and, all of a sudden she’s like the sun and when she smiles it’s light ... Everything happens for a reason and the main thing for me, as Miley’s daddy, is she’s happy.” Billy Ray did admit that Miley has been causing a lot of controversy lately with her twerking at the MTV Video Music Awards, racy photo shoots and tongue-in-cheek ‘Saturday Night Live’ hosting appearance. However, the 52-year-old country musician who also has two other children Braison, 18, and Noah, 13, with wife Tish -insists the former ‘Hannah Montana’ star has never had a normal life and neither has he. He said: “I’ve never known normal. Miley’s never known normal. Noah might be [the closest] to all of our children as knowing normal and even that’s quite sad to say, because let’s think about her world right now. It’s anything but normal ... I’ve really enjoyed the time I’ve been allowed to spend with Noah lately.” Billy Ray also has a son, Cody, 20, from a relationship with Kristin Luckey and he adopted Tish’s kids Trace, 25, and Brandi, 23, from a previous relationship.


My relationship with Simon is fine


initta doesn’t think her abortion revelation has damaged her friendship with Simon Cowell. The ‘So Macho’ singer has publicly admitted she terminated her and the music mogul’s baby in the 1980s after previous reports claimed she’d done it behind his back in 2009, but the brunette beauty is adamant her confession hasn’t affected the bond they share. Speaking on British TV show ‘This Morning’, she said: “I don’t think it’s done anything [to my relationship with Simon]. It’s just been embarrassing, it’s been exhausting because I’ve got caught up and you are trying to defend yourself but it hasn’t really affected Simon and I at all. It’s just affected me.” The 53-year-old star is now expecting his first child with New York socialite Lauren Silverman, and Sinitta - who adopted Magdalena, eight, and Zac, seven, with her exhusband Andy Willner - insists the trio get on well. Sinitta also rubbished claims Lauren has warned her to stay away from Simon and find her “own man”. The star explained: “It’s been unkind that Lauren’s telling me to get a man. I have a man and Lauren’s met my man and even likes my man. He’s even been on holiday as well. So if she was going to say that to me, why would she need to go via a newspaper, why didn’t she pick up the phone or send me a text or something.” Sinitta admits the recent allegations and stories have hurt her and she hopes by being honest about the abortion the rumors will end. She said: “And I’m not paid an allowance by Simon ... he doesn’t pay my lifestyle, people think I’m on some crazy payroll and I have to behave a certain way ... all this stuff does get to you ... It’s just upset me ... I thought if people knew the truth they would stop attacking me.”

Douglas wants friends’ help to see son M

ichael Douglas and his ex-wife have appealed to their celebrity friends to help them visit their imprisoned son. The ‘Behind the Candelabra’ star and former spouse Diandra Luker are desperate to be reunited with Cameron Douglas, who is being held in solitary confinement at the Federal Corrections Institute in Cumberland, Maryland, for drug offences, and have emailed high-profile friends including Calvin Klein, Yoko Ono, Bianca Jagger and Bo Derek, asking them to get behind a petition campaigning for them to see their troubled offspring. According to, Diandra wrote in an email: “We have not seen our son for over a year, and the government is telling us we cannot see our son for TWO YEARS. Cameron has also been in solitary confinement for TWO YEARS! (For a non violent crime of possession). As parents we are fighting back. “Our son Cameron has been sentenced to 9 years, the longest sentence ever handed out by the Federal Government for a non violent crime of possession. PLEASE help us by forwarding this petition after signature, to anyone you know who would like to help the cause. (sic)” The email - which is also addressed to Bob Pittman, Carolina Herrera, Deborah Norville, Ann Dexter-Jones, Frederic Fekkai, Donna Karan Charlie Rose and Diane von Furstenberg - concludes with a link to the petition. Activist Tony Papa of the Drug Policy Alliance, who is acting as an advocate for Cameron, started the petition on as he believes Michael, 68, is being unfairly punished for his son’s addiction. Michael took aim at the American prison system during his acceptance speech at the Emmy Awards last month. He said: “If you happen to have a slip - this is for a prisoner who is non-violent - as about a half a million of our drug addicted prisoners are, they punish you. “So for my son’s case, he’s spent almost two years in solitary confinement and right now I’m being told that I cannot see him for two years.” Cameron was handed a fiveyear sentence for heroin possession and conspiracy to distribute narcotics in 2009, which was extended by four and a half years in 2011 after he committed drug infractions behind bars, meaning he is due to be released in 2018.



LIFESTYLE G o s s i p

Gallagher’s custody battle over dogs


iam Gallagher and estranged wife Nicole Appleton are set for a custody battle over their dogs. The Beady Eye rocker - who has son Gene, 12, with the former All Saints singer - is desperately missing his sausage dogs, Ruby Tuesday and Brigitte Bardot, and is keen for them to spend time at the north London home he has moved into with new girlfriend Debbie Gwyther. A source said: “He wants to share custody of the dogs with Nicole - no way is he prepared to lose them. It’s breaking his heart not being with them. “He’s even been visiting pet shops in Primrose Hill to get his doggy fix.” However, Nicole - who was left devastated this summer when it emerged Liam had fathered a child with US journalist Liza Ghorbani - doesn’t want to accommodate ‘The Roller’ hitmaker’s request. The source added to the Daily Star newspaper: “Liam’s told Nicole how strongly he feels about the matter. But she’s in no mood to make his life easier.” Liam - who also has children Lennon, 14, with ex-wife Patsy Kensit, and Molly, 15, with Lisa Moorish - is a big fan of sausage dogs and previously vowed to do all he could to prevent the breed from becoming extinct. He said: “Extinction of sausage dogs? I will prevent that. I am going to buy 900 of them. I am going to prevent them from downfall.”

Ora shoots new make-up Rimmel campaign


ita Ora shot a new make-up campaign for Rimmel. The ‘How We Do’ hitmaker announced she was teaming up with cosmetic brand last month and now the two sides have come together and filmed her first ads after the pop star was given a full makeover with some of the new products from her line. Sharing a picture from the shoot on on Instagram, she captioned it writing: “#getthelondonlook @rimmellondonuk were coming for you! (sic).” The 22year-old singer looked super cool in high-waisted shorts, cute court shoes and a brown leather jacket, which brought out the burst of color splashed across her face, including bright red lips and bold eyes. The sexy snap was made even more eye-catching by the typical London black cab and bright green backdrop. Rita’s new collection is set for release in February next year and will focus on nail polish and lipstick. She wrote on Twitter last month: “The whole worlds wear Red lipstick! #myMission @rimmellondonuk #yeeeeaaaaahhhhbaby. (sic)” Not much else is known about the collaboration at this time, but the collection follows in the footsteps of fellow singer Rihanna, who launched a best-selling make-up line with Mac earlier this year.—Agencies

Hanks reveals he has type 2 diabetes om Hanks has been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. The 57-year-old actor has been battling with symptoms of the life-long condition which occurs when the body doesn’t produce enough insulin to function properly - since he was 36, but he has only just received the full diagnosis from a medical professional. Speaking on the ‘Late Show with David Letterman’, he said: “I went to the doctors and they said, ‘You know those high blood sugar numbers you’ve been living with since you were 36, well you’ve graduated, you’ve got Type 2 Diabetes young man.’ “ Hanks was told he should try and get back to the weight he was at high school to help control his symptoms, but the Oscar-winning star accepts he’ll just have to live with the condition because he will struggle shedding the extra pounds. He explained: “Well it’s controllable and through diet. My doctor said, ‘If you can weight what you weighed in high school, you’ll essentially be completely healthy and not have type 2 diabetes.’ And I said, ‘Well I’m going to have type 2 diabetes then.’ “ Hanks isn’t the only celebrity to battle with the illness as Patti LaBelle, Drew Carey, Sherri Shepherd and Paula Deen have also been diagnosed with diabetes.


Kelly Osbourne headbutted by bulldog


elly Osbourne has been left in agony after being headbutted by her bulldog. The 28-year-old star was playing with her pet pooch William when the excitable mutt jumped up and crashed his head into her jaw. The canine accidentally hit her so hard Kelly has been left with aching teeth and ringing ears. In a post on her Twitter account, she revealed: “I have been punched in the face by men but nothing has hurt more than being head butted in the jaw by my bulldog William! my teeth even hurt ... Why do my ears hurt so much considering it was my jaw that got hit?” The ‘Fashion Police’ star seems to be having a run of bad luck. Kelly - whose parents are Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne - broke the screen on her smartphone, making it hard for her to type out messages. She tweeted: “I need a new bloody phone my screen is broken I’m spelling everything wrong!” Kelly adopted grey and white William in April and instantly fell in love with him. She also has two other dogs - Sid and Story. Kelly and the rest of the Osbourne clan - which includes her brother Jack and sister Aimee - were left devastated when their beloved family pooch Maggie - a Japanese Chin breed - died in April.


wife gets on with ex Jo Ronnie Wood’s ex-wife Jo “gets on really well” with his new spouse. The Rolling Stones rocker married Sally Wood (nee Humphreys) in December 2012 and his ex Jo - whom he divorced in 2009 - is glad they are all friendly and came together to celebrate the 30th birthday of Tyrone Wood Ronnie and Jo’s youngest son. Jo said: “When I asked Ronnie and Sally to come, I asked Sally if she wouldn’t mind making a lion [cake] for Tryone’s star sign, Leo. “I knew she made delicious cakes - it was the most beautiful cake. She asked me for baby pics of Ty to put on cup cakes too. “It was really lovely, everyone being together. Everyone gets on really well, so it was lovely to have them all there.” Tyrone - who turned 30 in August, but has only just got around to having a party - also had a surprise of his own, as he introduced his new girlfriend, American actress Elizabeth Whitson, at the party, much to the delight of Jo, 58. She added to the new UK issue of HELLO! magazine: “I had worried he was turning 30 and he would be my single Casanova forever, but I’ve never seen him like this with a girl, she’s definitely ‘The One’. He’s fallen madly in love with her and it was the first time some of his friends had met her. “I was worried the party might have scared her off ... I’m already planning the wedding.” Tyrone’s party took place at Hoxton Arches in London, and saw him celebrate with his mother and father, sister Leah, brother Jesse and his girlfriend, radio DJ Fearne Cotton, half-brother Jamie and model Poppy Delevingne.

Halliwell pays for own reality TV show

Lawrence will kill for Lionsgate as studio nears deal for ‘Burial Rites’


eri Halliwell has paid for her own reality TV show. The former Spice Girl has spent thousands of pounds for a documentary about herself and has enlisted the help of YouTube comedy sensation Tom Magnus to help capture her every move as she attempts to revive her pop career, while carrying out her duties as a single mother to her seven-year-old daughter Bluebell. A source told the Daily Mirror newspaper: “Geri has always wanted her own TV show. He fellow Spices Mel B and Victoria Beckham both had documentaries made about them and it’s something Geri’s been dying to do for years. “Geri knows what she wants and she’s decided to do it herself. She doesn’t want it to be a serious documentary but more a tongue-in-cheek documentary about being a mum while trying to re-launch her music career.” Geri believes she and Tom can create a series that will be both funny and informative to viewers and she is hoping one of the major TV channels will choose to pick up the project. The 41-year-old star is set to release her new single ‘Half Of Me’ later this month in Australia and is hopeful the accompanying footage will be picked up by major UK channels. The source explained: “She is really excited about this new project and if she can pull it off, it’s another dream fulfilled.”


ionsgate is in advanced negotiations to acquire rights to “Burial Rites,” a movie package that will reteam Jennifer Lawrence with her “Hunger Games” director Gary Ross, an individual familiar with the project has told TheWrap. Based on the novel written by Hannah Kent and published by Little, Brown, “Burial Rites” will find Lawrence playing a woman accused of murder in Iceland in 1829, back when men scoffed at the notion of women committing violent crimes. The story features a potent romantic element that is expected to attract top-tier male talent. Allison Shearmur will produce the movie, which CAA began shopping to studios last week. Lionsgate hasn’t sealed a deal yet, but it’s expected to close one in the coming days. Lawrence and Ross are clearly eager to work together again, having set up an adaptation of John Steinbeck’s classic novel “East of Eden” at Universal and Imagine last month. Of course, both of these movies will likely spend years in development, as Ross is currently focused on casting Disney’s “Peter and the Starcatcher” and Lawrence has a full dance card that includes two more “Hunger Games” sequels. She’s also attached to star in Lionsgate’s “The Glass Castle,” the Chris Terrio-scripted drama “The Ends of the Earth” and Susanne Bier’s FilmNation drama “The Rules of Inheritance.” Oscar winner Lawrence will soon be seen alongside Christian Bale and her “Silver Linings Playbook” co-star Bradley Cooper in David O. Russell’s “American Hustle.” Lionsgate will release “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” on Nov 22.


lifestyle M U S I C



Why ‘Gravity’ should stay in box-office orbit through the Oscars Actress Chloe Grace Moretz poses on arrival for the world premiere of the film ‘Carrie’ in Hollywood, California, on October 7, 2013. The remake of Stephen King’s classic horror tale opens nationwide on October 18. —AFP

76 foreign language films to compete for Oscar


he foreign language Oscar competition this year will be wider than it ever has been before. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Monday that a record 73 countries, plus Hong Kong, Taiwan and the Palestinian territories, have submitted their entries to the Academy Awards. The acclaimed “Wadjda” from Saudi Arabia, about an 11-year-old girl’s quest to obtain a bicycle, is the country’s first submission. “All God’s Children” is also the first entry from Moldova. Montenegro, previously a part of Yugoslavia, submitted a film for the first time as an independent country: “Ace of Spades.” Entries are restricted to one per country and some nations’ choices were at odds with the film

community. China opted to submit the patriotic drama “Back to 1942” rather than Jia Zhang-ke’s festival favorite “A Touch of Sin.” The film, which depicts inequality in contemporary China, won best screenplay at the Cannes Film Festival in May. Two other well-received films, Japan’s “Like Father, Like Son” and India’s “ The Lunchbox,” weren’t chosen by their respective home countries. Japan instead opted for “The Great Passage,” while India chose “The Good Road.” Last year, Michael Haneke’s French-language “Amour,” an entry from Austria, won the Oscar best foreign-language film. Haneke’s drama was the overwhelming front runner, but this year’s competition is considered wide open. Notables include Thomas Vinterberg’s “The

Witherspoon’s west Memphis three movie ‘Devil’s Knot’ acquired by Image


mage Entertainment has acquired Atom Egoyan’s “Devil’s Knot,” a true crime thriller about the West Memphis Three, which had its world premiere last month at the Toronto International Film Festival, the distributor announced Monday. Image will release the film in at least 10 top theatrical markets during the second quar ter of 2014. Millennium

Entertainment also chased the title, though Image made an aggressive offer that financier Worldview Entertainment could not turn down. Oscar winners Colin Fir th and Reese Witherspoon star alongside Amy Ryan, Mireille Enos and Stephen

Moyer. Based on Mara Leveritt’s true crime book “Devil’s Knot: The True Story of the West Memphis Three,” story follows three teenagers accused of the brutal 1993 murder of three 8year old boys in Arkansas. Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley were sentenced to life in prison, while Damien Echols was sentenced to death. The film explores the lives of the deeply misunderstood outsiders, their families and communities, and their darkest fantasies. The conviction of the West Memphis Three riled the American justice system, shocked a tightly knit religious town and outraged the nation. The script was written by Scott Derrickson and Paul Harris Boardman, the latter of whom also produced the film along with Elizabeth Fowler, Richard Saperstein, Clark Peterson and Christopher Woodrow of Worldview Entertainment. “Reese Witherspoon delivers a stellar, emotional performance, displaying her versatility by transforming herself as a vulnerable mother trying to make sense of her son’s death,” said Image’s chief acquisition officer Bill Bromiley. “Her commitment to the role was exceptional, proving once again why she is one of Hollywood’s best leading actors.” The deal was negotiated by Mark Ward, Jess De Leo and Bromiley on behalf of RLJ Entertainment, and by CAA and WME on behalf of Worldview Entertainment and the filmmakers. The compelling tale of the West Memphis Three also inspired a trilogy of HBO documentaries known as “Paradise Lost,” which chronicled the arrest, 18-year imprisonment and eventual release of the three men. — Reuters

Hunt” (Denmark), Asghar Farhadi’s “The Past” (Iran), Amat Escalante’s “Heli” (Mexico) and Paolo Sorrentino’s “The Great Beauty” (Italy). The entries will be whittled down to a shortlist in January before the Oscars on March 2. The foreign language category voting process has often been criticized, particularly for its practice of allowing the initial choices to be made by national selection committees. In an effort to smooth out the final selection, all academy members will for the first time be allowed to vote on the foreign language film category. Previously, voting was limited to members who viewed all five nominees in a theater. DVD screeners of the nominees will be sent to members this year. — AP


he spectacular 3D and Imax boxoffice numbers put up by “Gravity” may have obscured another telling number from its stunning $55 million debut over the weekend: nearly 60 percent of its audience was over 35. If this were a superhero saga, an audience that skewed that old would be a disaster. But for an Oscar hopeful like Alfonso Cuaron’s “Gravity,” that touch of grey is exactly what Warner Bros. wanted to see. Combined with rave reviews from critics and “A-” CinemaScore, it means the Sandra Bullock-George Clooney space saga is very likely to be orbiting multiplexes for months - and likely through the March 2 Academy Awards. Its trajectory could resemble that of Ang Lee’s “The Life of Pi,” another Oscar contender that drew raves for stunning 3D visual effects, but there are significant differences. Fox opened “Pi” to $22 million just prior to Thanksgiving last year. It played and even picked up steam through the awards season, and wound up with $125 million domestically and a whopping $484 million overseas for a $609 million worldwide total before Lee won the Best Director Oscar. “Gravity” won’t match the overseas numbers of “Pi,” which was built to play abroad - and in Asia in particular. But it should do even better in the US. “‘Gravity’ opened with such massive numbers, as well as critical acclaim, that it could easily pull in $175 millon by the end of its domestic box office journey,” Exhbitor Relations vice-president and senior analyst told TheWrap on Monday. “It will certainly still be a factor when the holiday movie season unspools, and if it circles the awards circuit, as expected, it will play well into 2014.” There are other indicators that point to a long run for “Gravity” - beyond the simple fact that it’s the rare film that begs to be seen theaters - and in 3D. Attendance spiked 32 percent from Friday to Saturday, a clear sign of significant word of mouth. Most movies open to younger audiences, which older moviegoers then catch up to in the second or third week if the buzz around the film is strong. “Gravity” will be doing it the opposite way, looking to broaden to younger audiences. That Warner Bros marketers were able to mobilize mature

moviegoers to not only get out on opening weekend, but to ante up for 3D or Imax as well, is impressive and speaks to the film’s powerful draw. >> Bullock has become a bona fide box-office force. Forty-six percent of the “Gravity” audience was women, high for a sci-fi movie. Credit the presence of Bullock, who promoted the film relentlessly, for much of that. The actress is on sizzling box office run: each of her four films have opened to more than her previous best. Her last three films - “The Proposal,” “The Blind Side,” “The Heat” were hits and opened to $33 million, $34 million and $39 million respectively, before the “Gravity” debut blew the lid off. Imax accounted for an eye-popping $11.8 million, or more than 20 percent of the total receipts, of the opening weekend receipts. It’s the first time Imax has provided that big of a slice of the pie for a movie that opened over $50 million. The large -screen chain has largely cleared the decks for “Gravity,” and will be providing premium price boosts through October. And Warner Bros. will have no trouble keeping in 3D theaters after this weekend. For the most part, there’s not a ton of competition, once you get past this weekend. “Machete Kills” opens Friday, “Carrie,” “Escape Plan” and “ The Fifth Estate” are the next week and then its “Jackass Presents Bad Grandpa” and “The Counselor” the following week. There’s no clearly older-skewing film among those, and there won’t be until Nov 1, when CBS Films rolls out “Last Vegas,” which stars Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman and Kevin Kline. The exception - and it’s a big one - is Sony’s Tom Hanks modern-day piracy saga “Captain Phillips,” which opens Friday. The thriller directed by Paul Greengrass (“The Bourne Ultimatum”) is similarly well-reviewed (88 percent on Rotten Tomatoes) and also has serious star-power and awards ambitions. Sony sneaked it at 800 theaters on Saturday and was glad to see sellouts in both major and mid-sized markets. And another number out of the screenings - that 71 percent of those that went to see the Somali pirate saga sneaks were over 35 has Sony execs smiling, too. — Reuters

Single again: Bridget Jones returns B

ridget Jones returns after a 14-year break on Thursday, in a new book which sees the famed British singleton widowed with two children but still grappling with modern life and unsuitable men. Author Helen Fielding has already dropped the bombshell news about the death of Mark Darcy, the devastatingly handsome love interest who helped the two previous books sell 15 million copies across 40 countries. “Mad About The Boy” is set five years after his death as Bridget launches herself back onto the dating scene as a single mum, negotiating the new-fangled technology of texts and Twitter and finding herself a boyfriend two decades younger. Her compulsive listmaking remains, but these days diets are foiled by eating her children’s leftovers, she is now late for school rather than work and the desire to drink and smoke tests her hopes of being ‘the perfect mother’. And her fear from the first book of dying alone and being eaten by Alsatians is now replaced by a fear of dropping dead and being eaten by her starving, parentless children. One entry reads: “Thursday 19 April 2012. 175lb, alcohol units 4 (nice), calories 2822 (but better eating real food in club than bits of old cheese and fish fingers at home), possibility of having or desire to have sex ever again 0.” Reviewers have complained that characteristics that were so endearing in a 30-something Bridget are a mismatch for the 51-year-old widow, the darkness of Darcy’s death undermining the humour of the original books. But fans will likely relish the return of one of modern fiction’s most iconic characters, and preorders on Amazon have already made the book a bestseller. ‘Clunking disappointment’ Fielding created Bridget in the mid 1990s for a newspaper column about the life of a 30something singleton searching for love in London. The first book, “Bridget Jones’ Diary” in 1996, was a global success, spawning a whole new vocabulary-from smug marrieds to fuckwits-a new, truncated style of writing and arguably kick-starting the entire “Chick Lit” genre. The second book, “Bridget Jones: The

Bridget Jones

Edge of Reason”, in 1999 was also a success and both were made into films starring Renee Zellweger as Bridget, Colin Firth as Darcy and Hugh Grant as Darcy’s love rival Daniel Cleaver. There are some real laughs and some poignant moments in the new book, but the first reviews were not kind. “It isn’t just the style that jars: the random capital letters, the subjectless sentences, the mannerisms that now seem awfully tired. It isn’t just the rather hysterical tone,” one critic wrote in the Sunday Times. “It’s the fact that I hardly believed a word of it. I didn’t believe that a 51-year-old woman would tot up the number of minutes she’d spent on Twitter, and spend meetings about her own film script sending saucy texts.” Others have suggested that the reams of print that followed in the style of Bridget Jones, including most recently a spate of books about the comic trials of domestic life, have made it harder for the original to stand

out. The review in the Daily Telegraph called it a “clunking disappointment”, where “the tone is all wrong” and “every line feels full of effort”. After the success of the books, Fielding moved to Los Angeles where she co-wrote the movie screenplays and met television executive Kevin Curran, with whom she had two children. The couple have since separated and now, a 55-year-old single mother living back in London, the author finds herself in a similar position to Bridget. She has always denied the books are autobiographical, but she told Vogue magazine that the new Bridget Jones reflects how “hard motherhood can feel sometimes”. “Nobody’s life is perfect and today, more than ever, I think women are under a huge pressure to be something, achieve something, look like something,” she said. “Mad About The Boy” goes on sale in Britain and online on Thursday, before being rolled out across the world over the next six months. — AFP


lifestyle M U S I C



A file photo shows the hall of the Giuseppe Verdi theater in Busseto.

Opera master Verdi

‘still alive’ in Italy, 200 years on


pera maestro Giuseppe Verdi, whose bicentenary is being celebrated tomorrow, is “still alive” in Italy-especially for the inhabitants of his native village of Busseto. The world famous composer’s family home is surprisingly humble. On a crossroads, the grocery owned by his parents is on just one floor

‘Aida’ and ‘Rigoletto’,” Rossin told AFP. His partner said she was “very emotional”. “Our three sons are at the conservatory and we know how difficult it is to choose music and study when you are not from a rich family,” she said. Verdi only managed to complete his musical studies thanks to the patronage of a wealthy merchant from Busseto after his talent was noticed by his teacher at school, an organist at the local church. The house of his rich patron, Antonio Barezzi, is in the centre of the village on what is now Giuseppe Verdi Square and is open to the public. The young Verdi-known as “Peppino”-gave his first concert within these walls and taught piano to Barezzi’s daughter, Margherita, his future wife. In front of Barezzi’s house is a statue to

A bedroom in the native house of Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi. and has a handful of rooms, including a small stable. Mario Rossin and Laura Manfrenatto, a couple who have come to visit from Rovigo near Venice, said they wanted to be present for the 200th birthday of “our Verdi”, born on October 10, 1813. “It is thanks to him that our country is known in the whole world with operas like


A room in the native house of Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi.

Verdi. Behind it is the local theatre, which was payed in part by the composer himself. A little further is Sant’Agata, the villa where he ended up spending most of his life, which can also be visited. The maestro could have chosen to live in Milan, the home of the La Scala opera house, once he became famous but he pre-

ferred to stay in the Emilia Romagna region where he was born. “For us, for the inhabitants of Busseto, he was not a genius of music, Verdi was above all one of us. He is alive, still alive,” said Gian Paolo Laurini, a local painter sipping an aperitif. A group of young local residents nod in agreement. “When we pass in front of the villa, we look to see if he has woken up. When we are on the square, we speak to his statue,” Laurini

A file photo shows a statue of Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi in front of the Verdi theater in Busseto, near Parma. said. “When we chat at the bar, we always ask which is performing Verdi’s opera “Simon ‘What would Verdi have said, what would he Boccanegra”. “I was born with this music, grew have done?’” The composer of the famous up with it,” he told AFP, adding that what he arias “La donna e’ mobile” and “Va Pensiero” appreciated most in the music was its “great will be honored with a series of concerts vitality, great force”. Rossin said that Verdi’s powerful political around the world on Thursday. Among them will be a performance of and social messages-he was one of the leadVerdi’s “Requiem” by the Chicago Symphony ing lights in the “Risorgimento” that led to the Orchestra conducted by the award-winning unification of Italy-are often ignored. “His cry Riccardo Muti-to be relayed on live streaming of rebellion would be lost today with the political class currently in charge,” he said. “No one on the Internet. “Verdi represents our musical identity card cares about others these days. That is the great in the world,” said Jader Bignamini, a 37-year- drama. We would need a Verdi today.” — AFP old conductor at the Teatro Regio in Parma,

Rumour has it: Rocker Graham Parker is back

ecades on from his days as an angry young rocker, a role in a Hollywood movie playing an ageing musician struggling to make a comeback has helped give a new lease of life to Graham Parker. In the movie, Judd Apatow’s “This is 40”, the bid fails. In the real world, however, things are going pretty well for the 62-year-old London native. He’s brought out a well-received album, a documentary and a concert film with his reunited backing band, the Rumour. In late October they play their first British dates in 31 years. The London show sold out straight away. “This guy won’t go away. It’s like Whaca-Mole - hit him on the head, but he keeps coming back,” Parker told Reuters in an interview. “It’s all come out in my favor in many ways.” Parker has lived in upstate New York since 1988 and for years has played mostly solo in small venues in the United States. “It doesn’t quite seem real, better things are happening than they were a few years ago. But you don’t know what’s around the corner and you better take it as it comes,” said Parker, who sports a grey goatee and wears large red-framed spectacles. The movie “ This is 40” is a comedy about a record executive going through a family crisis while his independent company is failing. The character, played by Paul Rudd, pins his hopes on reviving the career of a fading rock veteran. Apatow, a longtime Parker fan, got in touch to ask him to play the part. Not only would he, Parker replied, he would bring along the Rumour, which he had just reformed to record an album. The movie, a critical and commercial hit, saw the Rumour play live

for the first time in years and a funny, scene-stealing performance from Parker appearing as himself. A DVD of the full Rumour show recorded for the movie has just been released entitled “This is Live”. Parker was amazed that the London shows sold out so quickly, believing that getting the grizzled veterans back together would not be a good

business move. “When people used to say ‘Will you reform Graham Parker and the Rumour?’ I always said the only reason to reform a band is to make lots of money and we wouldn’t be making our pensions, like the Eagles or Duran Duran.” “I’m doing it for all the wrong reasons, which is music, music, music. So I feel a bit righteous.”

Snarling Parker burst onto the London scene in the mid-1970s with a brand of hardedged, soul-influenced music with lyrics that railed against the world. The one-time petrol pump attendant snarled out defiant songs and earned a reputation as a somewhat bitter and twisted character. “I was trying to reinvent soul music with

Dylanesque lyrics,” he said. Critics loved his first two albums, “Heat Treatment” and “Howling Wind”, both from 1976, and his shows with the Rumour were hard-driving, impassioned events. For a while he was the next big thing. Bob Dylan was a fan and put him on the bill of his fabled Blackbushe concert in 1978. But when Punk came along, Parker was

deemed unfashionable and the media spotlight turned elsewhere. “I wasn’t nasty enough, I wasn’t dumb enough, too oldstyle and too clever,” he said. Still his records sold fairly well, peaking with “Squeezing Out Sparks” in 1979. “So I was having a blast, being treated like somebody, limo rides to (David) Letterman. Meanwhile in the press it was like ‘we knew he was crap anyway’.” Worn out by the road, the Rumour disbanded in 1982. Parker went on to work with others and put out several strong albums. But by the late 1980s, he had slipped out of the mainstream. Sipping a cup of tea during the interview - he had just got in from dates in Japan and was leaving for Ireland the next day - he looks back on his early years with self-deprecating humor and said his angry reputation was “overstated”. “It wasn’t really true, I got egged on,” he said. In a crowdsourced documentary that aired in March, admirer Bruce Springsteen commented that the young Parker was “caustic”. “There’s a hard edge to the songs that makes them a bit unpalatable,” Parker conceded. “When I listen to something from ‘Howling Wind’, I think aw, that’s nasty.” On his new album, “ Three Chords Good,” Parker is mellower. In the song at its heart, “Long, Emotional Ride”, he sings: “I never took one word of advice/Never in my whole life/But now I wanna hear what other people say.” The song was a result of the response to the crowd-sourcing appeal for the documentary, he said. “I realized people have cared about me for a long time. It was very moving and humbling. They wanted the story to be told. It blew me away.” — Reuters

The Weeknd Canadian recording artist Abel Tesfaye performs in concert as The Weeknd at Radio CIty Music Hall on Monday in New York. — AP

‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ casting Ehle as Anastasia Steele’s mother


ennifer Ehle is in negotiations to play Anastasia Steele’s mother in Universal Pictures and Focus Features’ adaptation of “Fifty Shades of Grey,” an individual familiar with the project has told TheWrap. Dakota Johnson will star as Anastasia, while Charlie Hunnam will play kinky billionaire Christian Grey. Ehle has been offered the role of Carla, a strong Southern woman who is used to being pursued by men, seeing as how she’s on her fourth husband. Sam Taylor-Johnson is directing the film from a script by Kelly Marcel, who adapted E L James’ erotic novel. Michael De Luca and Dana Brunetti are producing the movie, which hits theaters Aug 1, 2014. Ehle recently played strong heroines in “Zero Dark Thirty” and “Contagion.” Her other credits include “The King’s Speech” and “The Ides of March.” She’ll soon be seen in “RoboCop” and the Kevin Costner drama “Black and White,” and joined the cast of the John Travolta heist film “The Forger” earlier Monday. Ehle is repped by ICM Partners and Independent Talent Group. — Reuters

Opera master Verdi ‘still alive’ in Italy, 200 years on



A woman poses with a piece of street art, which depicts a heartshaped balloon covered in bandages and was allegedly done by the street artist Banksy, on October 7, 2013 in the Red Hook neighborhood of the Brooklyn borough of New York City. The piece was defaced with red spray paint shortly after being completed.—AFP


legend lives on, 50 years later


French photographer Hugues Vassal sits in Tours, central France, on multiple photo portraits he took of late popular French singer Edit Piaf. —AFP photos

ven as she lay dying, Edith Piaf carefully controlled the image that made her a star—and 50 years after her death a legend—in her native France and around the world. At 47 and dying of liver cancer, Piaf ruled that only her personal photographer, Hugues Vassal, would be allowed to capture the images of her final days. Tearing up as he recalled taking his last pictures of the diminutive star, Vassal said that even at the end of her life Piaf insisted—as always—on personally approving each photograph. “She knew she would go down in history and she wanted control over the photographs that we would keep of her,” said the 80-year-old Vassal, who was Piaf’s photographer in the last six years of her life. It was a final act of career choreography from a star whose phenomenal success was based not only on prodigious talent but also on a carefully shaped public image that persists to this day. When she died on October 10, 1963, Piaf was France’s greatest global star and the first to conquer America. “La Vie en Rose,” “Je ne Regrette Rien”—Piaf’s tragedy-infused songs and unmistakeable voice were the soundtrack for the post-war generation. She remains one of the best-known French performers abroad. A 2007 film about her life titled “La Vie en Rose” was popular worldwide and earned an Academy Award for actress Marion Cotillard. But as the landmark anniversary of her death is marked, new material claims that Piaf—or the “Little Spar-

row” to her legion of adoring fans—made up or encouraged a number of falsehoods about her life. Not weaned on red wine Robert Belleret, who wrote the just-published “Piaf, a French Myth”, said the star, who was born Edith Gassion, did not come into the world on the streets as widely claimed but at a hospital in Paris’s working-class 20th district on December 15, 1915. The book draws on scores of unpublished letters written by Piaf to her confidant, poet Jacques Bourgeat, among other personal papers and correspondence. While one biographer said she was cured of childhood blindness after a pilgrimage, and Piaf herself spoke of a miraculous healing, the new book says she did not, as widely reported, suffer from blindness as a child. Piaf’s early years were difficult, with her mother—a singer—abandoning her. She was brought up by her grandmothers, but was not weaned on red wine, the book says. Another myth. Belleret also says the iconic singer had no political conscience and dismisses her claim that she passed on fake papers to prisoners in German camps during World War II.—AFP

Marilyn Monroe


A display of some of the many photo portraits French photographer Hugues Vassal took of late popular French singer Edit Piaf. 

plastic surgery notes, X-rays up for auction

physician’s notes on Marilyn Monroe that indicate that the Hollywood sex symbol had undergone cosmetic surgery will be up for sale next month along with a set of her X-rays, an auction house said yesterday. The set of six X-rays and a file of doctors’ notes that offer a partial medical history of the “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” actress from 1950 to 1962, are expected to fetch between $15,000 and $30,000 at auction on Nov 9-10, said Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills, California. The notes written by Hollywood plastic surgeon Michael Gurdin appear to confirm speculation that Monroe, who epitomized glamour and set a standard of movie star beauty during the latter part of Hollywood’s golden era, went under the knife for cosmetic reasons. The seller, who is so far unnamed, received the items as a gift from Gurdin. “Nobody really thought about Marilyn Monroe having plastic surgery. It was always speculation - did she or didn’t she?” said Martin Nolan, executive director of Julien’s Auctions. “They thought she was such a natural beauty, they didn’t want to believe.” Gurdin’s notes include references to a 1950 cartilage implant in Monroe’s chin, which he observed to have slowly begun to dissolve. Monroe’s biggest films, such as 1953’s “How to Marry a Millionaire,” 1955’s “The Seven Year Itch” and 1959’s “Some Like It Hot,” were all shot after 1950. “Also at that time, going back to the 1950s, people didn’t go for plastic surgery procedures,”

Nolan added. “This is very, very new.” The broken nose mystery The X-rays are dated June 7, 1962, after Monroe saw Gurdin following a late night fall and two months before the actress would die at age 36 from an overdose of barbiturates. The death was ruled a probable suicide. Monroe would also be fired by studio 20th Century Fox from the unfinished film “Something’s Got to Give” the following day for her constant absences. The X-rays include Monroe’s frontal facial bones, a composite right and left X-ray of the sides of her nasal bones and dental X-rays of the roof of her mouth. A set of three chest X-rays of Monroe from 1954 sold for $45,000 at a 2010 auction. A self-published memoir by Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Norman Leaf in 2010 claimed that Monroe underwent cosmetic surgery on her chin in 1950, citing the same notes made by Gurdin, Leaf’s medical partner. Leaf also states in his memoir that Monroe underwent a slight rhinoplasty procedure on the tip

of her nose. A radiologist’s notes included in the lot determined that there was no damage to Monroe’s nose from the fall, but a recent evaluation of the X-rays found a minute fracture, the auction house said. Doctors used the name “Joan Newman” as Monroe’s alias on the X-rays which list her height as 5 feet, 6 inches (1.68 m) and her weight as 115 lb (52 kg).—Reuters

9th Oct 2013  

Kuwait Times

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