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MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

Turkey takes jet downing to NATO, Syria tension soars

Israel army ‘game’ leaves Palestinian man dead


China conducts space docking as sub breaks 7,000-m mark


NO: 15489


Italy advance as England pay penalty once more

Opposition rejects court ruling as ‘null and void’


150 FILS


SHAABAN 5, 1433 AH

Statement raises political stakes as Khorafi returns conspiracy theories

Historic win for Morsi

Why not give the Brotherhood a chance

By Badrya Darwish


t last Egypt elected its president. After a long struggle and a long and tiring election campaign, the new president was announced yesterday. I hope that the other party accepts the results of the elections. This is the first time in the Arab world that we heard of a president who admits he won the elections by 52 percent. We are used to hearing comical results like 99.9 percent, which would mean that the whole nation voted for that president. The results from Egypt’s elections show that Morsi is humble. At least he admits that he has an opponent. From the fifty million Egyptians who were eligible to vote, Morsi got around 13 million votes while Continued on Page 13

CAIRO: Egyptians carry a poster showing newly-elected President Mohamed Morsi in Tahrir Square yesterday. — AP CAIRO: Egypt’s Mohamed Morsi, the first Islamist to be elected president of the Arab world’s most populous nation, said yesterday he will be a leader “for all Egyptians” and called for national unity after a polarising race. Morsi, the country’s first elected leader since a popular uprising

ousted president Hosni Mubarak, won 51.73 percent of the vote against ex-premier Ahmed Shafiq. “I will be a president for all Egyptians,” Morsi said just hours after he was declared the winner. “I call on you, great people of Egypt ... to strengthen our national unity,” he said,

adding that national unity “is the only way out of these difficult times”. Morsi, who resigned from the Muslim Brotherhood to take the top job, thanked the “martyrs” of the uprising for the victory and stressed that “the revolution continues”. Continued on Page 13

Max 44º Min 30º High Tide 04:05 & 14:50 Low Tide 09:10 & 21:35

By B Izzak KUWAIT: The Kuwaiti opposition yesterday rejected the constitutional court ruling last week which nullified the 2012 election and reinstated the previous National Assembly, and called on the court and the judicial authority to “rectify” and reverse the ruling. In a hardhitting statement signed by 35 members of the 2012 assembly, the opposition insisted that the “ruling came outside the legislative authority”, adding that the court in this ruling has “exceeded the limitations of its powers”. “We call on the members of the constitutional court and the Supreme Judicial Council to rectify the situation and reverse” the ruling, the statement read by Khaled Al-Sultan said. The statement also called on the judicial authority not to venture into politics and not extend its authority outside its jurisdictions specified in the law establishing the constitutional court. The opposition reiterated that the Amiri decree dissolving the previous Assembly “does not fall within the jurisdiction of the constitutional court” and accordingly its ruling “is null and void” and should be rectified. The new position of the Kuwaiti opposition, comprising of 35 MPs of the 2012 Assembly, came after a four-hour meeting at the diwaniya of former speaker Ahmad Al-Saadoun. The opposition also called on the government to reject any dealing with the previous Assembly which was dissolved by the Amir because several of its members are allegedly involved in corruption scandals. Continued on Page 13

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


Stricter measures to enforce 11am-4pm outdoor work ban More violations this year By Ben Garcia

Leisure trip to Kobbar Island KUWAIT: With more than 50 jet skis and a number of jet boats making their presence felt, the Kuwait Marine Sport Club organized a recreation trip to Kobbar island in cooperation with Sultan AlSalem and Sons Company. An orientation meeting was held at the club’s premises prior to the trip. Abdul Qader Al-Najjer, Chairman of Marine Community and Jet Skis and Boats Owners presided over the event.

An exhibition was organized with the participation of world champions Mohammad Bu Rabie and Mohammad Jassem Al-Baz. Abdul Rahman Abdullah Al-Salem, Supervisor, delivered an informative speech and Asad Abdullah, Public Relations Officer explained the aims of the trip and hailed the initiative taken by Sultan Al-Salem Company to organize the trip for the second year.

Businessmen send tons of food to Syrian refugees AMMAN: A convoy of trucks carrying hundreds of tons of food donated by Saudi businessmen for Syrian refugees arrived in Jordan yesterday. The relief aid of 312 tons of food stuff, is part of Arab efforts to support Syrian families who escaped from bloody violence in their country to Jordan, Public Relations and Media director at the Jordanian Red Crescent Mohammad AlTuraifi said. Arab countries have been coordinat-

ing with the Jordanian Red Crescent to send aid for the Syrian refugees, he said. Al-Turaifi said the Saudi convoy consisted of 13 trucks and the food would be distributed to around 8,000 Syrian families living in Amman and other governorates. Around 120,000 Syrians have sought refuge in Jordan. Syriaís other neighbors, Lebanon and Turkey, were also hosting Syrians fleeding the violence in their country. — KUNA

KUWAIT: Kuwait Times investigated the execution of an outdoor work ban during the peak summer season from 11am-4pm, and found that more violations are being committed this year. Many construction machineries/equipment lay motionless at their respective construction sites. The Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor (MSAL) has implemented a ban on outdoor work from June 1 to August 31 to protect laborers from the exasperating summer heat. Workers are prohibited from toiling in open areas as temperatures soar to over 52 degrees Celsius. Yesterday, temperature was recorded at above 40 degrees Celsius during midday but as the heat was blocked by a thick cloud of sand, its intensity reduced considerably. If last year, violations were committed at the premises of Kuwait National Assembly Building, as Kuwait Times reported, [took place at the new building under-construction] this time no workers were seen at the construction site. However, not far away from the National Assembly building, Kuwait Times spotted a few Pakistani workers demolishing an old building along Fahad Al-Salem Street. It was past 2pm. The Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor’s Undersecretary Assistant for Labor Jamal AlDousari said that nearly 278 private companies violated the ban on outdoor work between 11am-4pm. According to Al-Dousari, nearly 38 sites to were visited to ensure that they comply with the ban. At least 400 workers were caught working and were let off with a warning. If they are caught again, the company will face stricter penalties. Another team from the Ministry of Labor will be delegated to monitor the companies who violate the ban. The cleaning companies in Kuwait are being closely watched but many are abiding by the law. A worker from a cleaning company said that his employer complies with the order. “We work from 5 am to 11am only. Then we are fetched by a bus to and are taken back to

our camp. We do not work beyond 11 am,” a street cleaner told this reporter. Last week, the temperature was recorded at above 40 degrees Celsius and meteorologists have warned that this year could be the hottest.

Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar and the UAE have introduced rules and mobilized inspection teams to ensure that laborers, mainly in the construction sector, and street cleaners are protected from the scorching summer heat.

KUWAIT: A construction equipment on standby in Kuwait City during the 11am-4pm work ban yesterday. — Photos by Ben Garcia

KUWAIT: Men at work despite ban.

Kuwaiti charity-funded refugee housing units ready in Darfur KHARTOUM: Preparations are complete for refugee housing units in North Darfur’s capital of Al-Fashir, funded by a number of Kuwaiti charities, it was announced yesterday. The ‘Kuwaiti village’ was funded with money raised by charities the International Islamic

Charitable Organization (IICO) and the Kuwaiti Joint Committee for Relief and the Awqaf General Secretariat. Around $2 million were raised by the charities from the people of Kuwait for the project, director of the office of Kuwait’s charity

organization in Sudan, Dr. Ahmed al-Sanusi said. The village consists of 48 integrated residential units on a 400sq/m area in a addition to a mosque, a school, a water plant, a hospital, a social centre and a police office. — KUNA


in brief

Seminar on Syria KUWAIT: The Parliament for Syria League held its first seminar at the diwan of ex MP, Waleed AlTabtabae, with the participation of MP Adel AlMaawdeh from Bahrain, Khalid Al-Dhaher from Lebanon, ex-MP Mohammed Hayef and Adel Al Dimkhi. Al-Maawdeh said that what is happening in Syria is, in brief, a war between right and wrong. He added that he would support the Syrian people to fight oppression and that the people will be victorious with the help of the GCC states and the region as a whole. He added that Khamenie gave a speech in support of Egypt’s revolution but has not done the same for Syria. Ex-MP Dr Waleed Al Tabtabae said that they will not communicate with the Syrian parliament because it is part of the Syrian regime.

New fire extinguishing trucks for airport By Hanan Al-Saadoun KUWAIT: A delegation from Kuwait Fire Services Department headed by deputy director for firefighting and human resources development Brig Yousif AlAnsari left for Italy on a special assignment to receive new aircraft fire extinguishing and rescue machinery and equipment. A Kuwaiti delegation had already checked the specifications of the purchased equipment and witnessed a demonstrations at an Italian airport.

The new trucks, Magirus Super Dragon 8X8 engines with 17000 liters of water, 2000 liters of foam and 250 kg of powder capacity, are scheduled to join service at the airport fire brigade by the beginning of August. The new trucks can use hoses or top water cannons with hull-piercing booms to penetrate aircraft hulls remotely and automatically when needed, which provides full safety for firefighters. The new trucks are also equipped with infrared cameras and the latest firefighting technology.

MOH’s disorganization KUWAIT: Sources revealed that central tender committee was disappointed with the Ministry of Health’s inability to complete the necessary papers and documentation prior to sending them to the committee. The sources explained that the committee noticed that the files coming from Ministry of Health are often incomplete and sent without the correct documents requested by the central tender committee. Suicides, abuse cases KUWAIT: Officials from a number of care homes in Kuwait are covering up cases of sexual abuse as well as suicide attempts reported among residents, a local daily reported yesterday. The Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor (MSAL) insiders who spoke to Al-Qabas on condition of anonymity indicate that supervisors at care homes run by the ministry “deliberately failed to record abuse and suicide incidents.” Sources also mentioned “suspicions of misusing donations” to social care homes of juveniles, orphans, disabled and senior citizens, in addition to “offering the football court at the Sulaibikhat compound for rent illegally.” ‘Mental Security’ lecture KUWAIT: Under the patronage of Assistant Undersecretary Ministry of Interior, General Sheikh Ahmad Nawaf Al-Ahmad, and the presence of Assistant General Director of National Security, Brigadier Fawzi Yousuf Al-Suwailem, and Director of the Strategic Studies Institute, Colonel Hizam Abdul Rehman Al-Rashidi, the National Security College held a lecture on Wednesday entitled ‘Mental Security.’ The lecture was organized by the strategic studies institute to raise awareness about the role of social, security, media, educational and informative organizations in strengthening mental security. It also endeavored to deepen their skills and train them for a number of strategic subjects. Dr Khalid Shujaa Al-Otaibi was the Speaker of the lecture.

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


Missing toddler dies of sunstroke on building roof Shooting suspect in custody KUWAIT: A toddler’s body was found on the roof of a Taima building. He reportedly died of a sunstroke. The body was discovered 36 hours after the family of two-and-a half year old Iranian child filed a missing person report with police. Taima police carried out investigations assuming that he was kidnapped. It is only after a search was conducted at the rooftop of his building that the corpse was found. Police and criminal investigators arrived at the scene after the man reported the discovery. The body was removed for an autopsy after no evidence of foul play was found. Investigations are still ongoing into the case. Police pressed negligence charges against the father. Murder attempt Police arrested a man on Saturday, a day after his former brother-in-law was hospitalized after sustaining a gun wound. The arrest took place at the suspect’s residence in Abdullah Al-Mubarak. Investigators located the suspect based on information provided by his sister’s ex-husband, a VIP protection officer who was shot at his residence in Mubarak AlAbdullah. Police raided the house and coaxed the suspect into surrendering his weapon. Officers then restrained the suspect tactfully, bearing in mind that his 17year-old daughter would not be harmed. The man was referred to the Public Prosecution Department to face attempted murder charge. Maid flees with cash A search is ongoing for a domestic worker who made away with her employer’s cash after rendering his daughter

unconscious at his Abdullah Al-Salem house. The girl called her father, a Ministry of Interior officer, after regaining consciousness and realizing that their Filipina housemaid was missing. The maid was apparently caught off guard after the girl witnessed her commit the act. She fled with KD 900 in cash in addition to the passports of a number of family members, in addition to her own passport. A case was filed at the Abdullah Al-Salem police station where the homeowner pressed physical assault and theft charges against the maid. Traffic accident Two children were injured after the driver at the helm of a Spor ts Utility Vehicle (SUV ) lost control over it and rammed into a house in Taima. The siblings were rushed to the Jahra Hospital by paramedics who reported to the scene shortly after the accident was reported. The children were staying at the ground floor room made out of corrugated galvanized iron sheets. The SUV’s Indian driver was taken into custody. Aircraft ordeal Four passengers were hospitalized after fainting in an aircraft. The captain announced that that passengers remain onboard until a malfunction in the plane is corrected. The Mahan Air flight outbound to Mashhad, Iran returned to base shortly after takeoff, after which passengers requested that they wait at the Kuwait International Airport. Ambulances then reached the aircraft after passengers placed emergency calls stating that four passengers had fainted. —Al-Rai

KUWAIT: The Capital Municipality raided various stores located in downtown Kuwait City and old Mubarkiya Market yesterday. Over 26 citations were issued in connection with possession of expired licenses, erecting illegal banners and billboards on pavements. Director Ahmed Al-Subaih supervised the campaigns. — Photos by Hanan Al-Saadoun

Burger-loving Kuwait oasis for US franchises KUWAIT: Jonathan Spiel has tried three times to turn his Tea Lounge in Brooklyn into a thriving chain. Four years ago, he closed his second location after his landlord raised the rent. Another outlet failed because of poor sales, and he abandoned his last attempt when a co-op board imposed tough rules. With the sluggish economy crimping his cash flow, Spiel has found a new way to expand: franchising in Kuwait. Spiel hadn’t planned on doing business in the Gulf state. His first-and, so far, only-taker is in Kuwait, Bloomberg Businessweek reports in its June 25 issue. How does a Brooklyn lounge that boasts a bar and is popular with nursing mothers become a winning concept in an Arab country where alcohol is banned and women must be modest? “It’s a tea culture, yet there are no tea places,” said Spiel. While that’s not technically true, the desert state does have two things Brooklyn lacks: oil money and a hunger for more US brands. For franchisee Mohammed AlArbash, whose family’s holdings range from its original jewelry business to recycling machines, that makes Tea Lounge a terrific bet. “I don’t care if it’s famous,” said Al-Arbash. “I was looking for new ideas in the United States.” He’s not alone. Hans Hess had barely expanded Elevation Burger beyond Falls Church, Virginia, when he struck a deal in 2010 to bring the chain to Kuwait. While some might balk at handing their organic burger concept to a Kuwaiti owner of hookah bars, Hess never looked back. He has since signed several deals across the Middle East, and sales at Elevation’s restaurants there are more than double the average of their US counterparts. While Hess said he never thought he’d hit Kuwait before hanging a shingle in, say, New

York, “it made sense once I understood how in love they are with American brands.” The Middle East has long been a magnet for US restaurant chains thanks to its wealth and large numbers of foreign workers-not to mention its malls, tax-free zones and jet-setting elites. Still, the usual franchising formula is to have some heft at home and then go global, often starting with a move into Canada or Mexico. That was before slow growth, tight capital and stiff competition made expanding next door more difficult than opening in Dubai. The result: Dubai diners get to line up, New York-style, at local incarnations of Manhattan hot spots like Shake Shack and Magnolia Bakery (housed in a Bloomingdale’s, the 140-year-old retailer’s first foray abroad when it opened in 2010). Soon they’ll also be able to sample the goodies at Sprinkles Cupcakes, a 10-unit chain from Beverly Hills that just agreed to franchise 34 Middle East shops. Some question the logic of franchising a budding brand. In return for an upfront fee and a cut of sales, buyers are supposed to get a distinctive and proven business model that can be replicated. “Franchisees are generally entrepreneur wannabes,” said restaurant consultant Michael Seid of MSA Worldwide LLC. When a seller has only a handful of outlets or little experience, Seid asks, what system is being sold? Smashburger Chief Executive Officer David Prokupek, whose first foreign store opened in Kuwait in April, said he’s glad his five-year-old brand had 120 units at home before venturing overseas. “I don’t think we’d have had the horsepower or supply chain to support a foreign franchisee before now,” he said. “There’s a real risk in these high-visibility cities. If someone has a bad experience, it can really damage your brand.”

Death sentence handed to citizen for murdering maid By Hanan Al-Saadoun KUWAIT: A citizen was sentenced to death for murdering his Nepalese housemaid. Case papers indicate that the 33-year-old soldier was arrested for bludgeoning his housemaid to death and burying her at Mina Abdullah desert. However, stray dogs began feeding on the corpse. The man defended his act by claiming that the domestic worker used to illtreat his children. Building catches fire A fire broke out at a building under construction in Hawally. Six ambulances had to be dispatched to the scene to rescue injured construction workers and firemen. They were admitted to Mubarak Hospital. One firefighter was electrocuted while tackling the blaze . Citizen acquitted The Criminal Court yesterday acquitted a citizen of charges related to sodomizing a teenager, said security sources. Car accidents A 21-year-old citizen fractured his spinal cord in a car accident that took place along Fahaheel Expressway. The young man was admitted to Mubarak hospital. A 28-year-old Saudi national fractured his right leg and a 19-year-old citizen fractured both his right arm and leg, and sustained a head injury in a collision that took place along Al-Salmi Highway.

KUWAIT: Firemen in action to extinguish the fire in Hawalli yesterday. — Photos by Fouad Al-Shaikh

Slowdown in execution of growth projects in Kuwait KUWAIT: Local banks are facing difficulties in increasing their credit facilities under the noticeable slowdown in the execution of growth projects, and were surprised with the Central Bank’s decision which demands that banks stop their travel insurance services. The services are a means for the banks to one increase their profits, which have been wavering since the start of the economic crisis in 2008. Although the Central Bank’s decision is lawful as per Kuwait’s regulations, it will affect banks profitability. Banking sources revealed that decision

came at the wrong time for banks given their current attempts to find new sources of income and to strengthen profitability. Banking expert, Ali Al-Mudaihem, said that banking insurance is implemented in all countries of the world. He added that travel insurance, or treatment insurance, covers all expenses of treatments at hospital in additional as well as others. Director of the world center for financial consultation, Abdullah Masoud, said that banking insurance in Kuwait is less costly compared to direct insurance through insurance companies.

Fourth Ring Road ‘to ease traffic’ KUWAIT: The development of the Fourth Ring Road is aimed at increasing traffic capacity and avoiding jams, said an official here yesterday. Saud Al-Naqi Undersecretary for Traffic Affairs at the Ministry of Public Works said that the Fourth Ring-Road is one of the vital highways in the country, adding that with the considerable amount of urban development within the area, it was imperative to build new structures that help facilitate better transportation in the country. The development project will be executed in three phases that lasts for a period of 84 months, said Al-Naqi. The development plan would lead to the inclusion of four lanes with no traffic lights at inter-sections. The areas near the Fourth Ring Road will be connected with each other without being linked to the main-road. —KUNA


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


in my view

In my view

Raising the bar on segregation

Jar of hearts

By Tariq Al-Maeena


By Labeed Abdal ar of Hearts, a song by young singer Christina Perri, has heartwarming lyrics. It talks about a lover who cannot keep waiting anymore for an estranged lover. One person regrets waiting for the other. The real lover learnt the meaning of life after walking away and it became too late to return to it again. Perri sings: “Runnin’ ‘round leaving scars Collecting your jar of hearts And tearing love apart You’re gonna catch a cold From the ice inside your soul” By passing the latest controversial verdict, the Constitutional Court break that political jar in which broken hearts were gathered and collected from Kuwaitis and expatriates. Many good hearts were broken. The open, multicultural society established in 1614 has been completely destroyed. All believers have been living on this blessed land. At a time of a global changes and a new world order, with several ‘Springs’ blooming in the Arab World, global warming, power shifts and the international financial meltdown, we here in Kuwait, should learn many important lessons to retain our stability, sustainability and other privileges. Remembering that we all live on one boat, we need to retain our freedoms and liberties by preserving many of our constitutional rights and values. Only that can guarantee our togetherness without insulting the others, whatever be their beliefs, sects, religion or origin. Keeping the rule of the law and the independent court system must remain our priority at all times and places. Certainly, we do not to catch a cold from icy souls or even want to see any jars of hearts with scars on them. Everybody living here should share real harmony and care.


kuwait digest

Corrupt and conservative By Dr Hassan Abbas f we compare between the 2009 and the 2012 parliaments, there are hardly any differences. They face strikingly similar problems. The former is often referred to as “the Parliament of corrupt individuals” because of a suspicious cash transfers discovered in the bank accounts of members from the pro-government majority. On the other hand, the latter is not that different after the oppositionist majority ‘stole’ the political decision making process. The ‘corrupt’ Parliament is accused of “plotting a coup against the Constitution” by its decisions and voting process. The conservative Parliament (reference to its tribal-Islamist majority) similarly utilized the constitutional system. What is the difference between a parliament that used the Constitution to foil a grilling debate, and another that was voted to lift the immunity of Nabeel Al-Fadhl and Mohammad Al-Juwaihel, retaining Musallam Al-Barrak and Faisal Al-Mislem? It is true that a Parliament whose members are accused of being corrupt do not bring about positivity. Thieves who steal people’s conscience are not better than those who steal money. The conservative parliament stole the public’s conscience when they gave themselves the exclusive right to be on the right side. I am not a fan of the 2009 parliament as I still hope it will be dissolved as soon as possible. However, I understand that theft can take place of money, as well as conscience, religion, decision mak ing and patriotism. Musallam Al-Barrak is perhaps right when he accused the ‘corrupt’ parliament of ‘plotting a coup against the Constitution.’ I hoped that he would say the same thing about the ‘conservatives. You do not agree? What about the time when the majority bloc plotted to bring in a constitutional amendment that pushes state laws toward becoming more Islamic-oriented? What about the other time when AlBarrak and other MPs agreed to take part in a Parliament whose constitutionality was questioned from the very beginning of the 2009 Parliament? Warnings were issued by Dr Mohammad Al-Muqatea and other constitutional experts. It was ignored by lawmakers who were blinded by revenge, sectarianism and tribalism. Since both of them abducted people’s dignity, removal of both the ‘corrupt’ and the ‘conservative’ is the need of the hour. —Al-Rai


t would be unfair to malign all bureaucrats in Saudi Arabia as being idle all the time. Flush with petro-dollars and with time on their hands, some pursue very unusual ideas and set up the infrastructure to implement them. Take the case of the Saudi M inistr y of Commerce and Industry, which “is currently studying a proposal to set up four industrial cities in Riyadh exclusively for women”, as reported in a leading daily. The news item goes on to say that after many hours spent thinking up such schemes and putting them on paper, “the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) has conducted feasibility studies on the projects and submitted them to the ministry for final approval. The cities will be fully devoted to manufacturing consumer goods”. According to the chairman of the National Committee for Industries at the Saudi Council of Chambers, the four women-exclusive industrial cities will be set up in each corner of Riyadh. The reasoning, according to the pundits at the chamber, is that the establishment of these cities would result in the even distribution of services to the capital’s residents, with the added benefit of offering more avenues of employment to the growing Saudi women workforce. These cities are expected to match the existing mega-billion industrial cities spread across Saudi Arabia, most of which are heavily involved in oils and petrochemicals. The pundits further state that the four cities will be managed and run exclusively by and for women and would focus on more consumer goods industries such as “ready-made clothes, tailoring, confectionery, gold jewellery, assembly units for electronic appliances such as radio, television and computers”. To safeguard these industrial cities exclusively for women, the proposal demands that “the factories be surrounded by high fences to maintain safety and privacy. The projects also call for employment of trustworthy guards to watch the gates and oversee the movement of workers and visitors”. The combined effor ts of t wo ministries, Commerce and Municipal and Rural Affairs, are needed to “execute this vital project”, according to the RCCI spokesman. Now, I understand that perhaps the motive behind the study was initially spurred by a desire to address the issue of rising women’s unemployment. But to address that with the suggestion of industrial cities exclusively for

kuwait digest

No need for all this uproar By Abdllatif Al-Duaij usallam Al-Barrak and company who have system of government in Kuwait is democratic, made a flurry of angry statements against under which sovereignty resides in the people who the Constitutional Court’s Wednesday ver- are the source of all authorities. His argument is dict should calm down because no case was filed correct because the Constitution lays down that against them! They better save themselves from the people use their authority “in line with constitutional ar ticles,” giving MPs the authority to the risk of committing another illegal act! The ruling was passed against the Cabinet of HH approve of constitutional amendments. Al-Saadoun is 100 percent right here because Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah. It was never made to question the oppositionists’ approach, people do not have the authority to ‘govern’ or legalliances or practices. It was an unprecedented rul- islate directly. Now the same Ahmad Al-Saadoun ing, perhaps in the region and even worldwide. The says that the 2009 parliament, which was elected Court found that the will of people triumphs over by the people and reinstated by a court order, must governmental decisions. We should be proud of not return because it was rejected after public this verdict, coming from a court that values the protests that preceded its dissolution and subsequent elections. So, Al-Saadoun rejected the idea true will of the nation. The judgment states that the 2009 parliament of making constitutional amendments through be reinstated “by the power of the Constitution,” public referendum, but approves toppling a Parliament based on the strictly stating that it cannot demands of a few thousand be rejected when it falls in line with the people’s authori- Al-Saadoun is 100 percent right citizens demonstrated at the ty, and must immediately be here because people do not have Iradah Square? Whether Ahmad Alenforced. the authority to ‘govern’ or legisSaadoun likes it or not, the The Constitutional Court passed the ruling on the basis late directly. Now the same 2009 parliament was elected that Cabinet of former prime Ahmad Al-Saadoun says that the by Kuwaiti people and cannot minister HH Sheikh Nasser Al- 2009 parliament, which was be overthrown by protests, demands or threats. Mohammad Al-Sabah had resigned, rendering the pro- elected by the people and rein- Following the recent constitucedures preceding the disso- stated by a court order, must not tional cour t ’s ruling, this lution as being unconstitu- return because it was rejected Parliament becomes the legal representative of the people. tional. Basically, the Parliament was dissolved after public protests that preced- Therefore, my advice to Alwithout the presence of an ed its dissolution and subse- Saadoun and his group is to calm down, attend a session actual Cabinet because HH quent elections. of the 2009 parliament in Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Alwhich HH Sheikh Jaber AlSabah was not assigned with forming a new Cabinet. While Article 107 of the Mubarak Al-Sabah will have the opportunity to Constitution accords HH the Amir the sole authori- have his Cabinet sworn-in before legislators, before ty to dissolve the Parliament, the decree can be a dissolution can happen constitutionally - as passed only after the Cabinet decides to initiate a promised Wednesday by cabinet spokesman, non-cooperation motion. The same article further Minister of Information Sheikh Mohammad Alinsists that a Parliament must not be dissolved Abdullah Al-Sabah. Mass resignation would only more than once for the same reason, which means make the government compelled by court to carry that if a Cabinet files a second non-cooperation out by-elections. Allegedly ‘corrupt’ legislators can motion after a parliament was dissolved through be elected and then proceed to enforce legislations same procedure, the Amir must sack the prime that end up eliminating the opposition from the political scene. There is no need for all the uproar minister instead. Speaker Ahmad Al-Saadoun said during a tele- created by the opposition, which can be justified if vised interview last Thursday that the government the government fails to carry out the promise plans to introduce a constitutional amendment made by the information minister. The opposition that is carried out through a public referendum. Al- always takes pride in winning the majority in the Saadoun’s argument in rejecting such a proposal is 2012 Parliament “by free will of the Kuwaiti people.” that according to Article 6 of the Constitution, the So why are they being hesitant? — Al-Qabas


kuwait digest

Reassuring citizens is a priority By Dr Wael Al-Hasawi here was a time we felt fortunate enough to all kinds of disputes. We find ourselves in recent learn the principles of political work and wit- years living in ‘judicial chaos’ created by numerous ness developments in the political process. and contradicting legal opinions and rulings. I am not going to comment on the This was the case until we learnt how twisted and diverted politicians can be, to the point that we Constitutional Court’s verdict which pronounced the 2012 parliament elections as being unconstituhate anything that has to do with politics. There was a time we felt fortunate to witness tional. I do not want to repeat what many other parliament sessions and legislations until we saw columnists have already said, and I do not want to take sides with conspiracy malpractices and infightings theorists talking about ‘susbetween MPs that made us hate anything that has to do There was a time we felt fortu- pending the Constitution.’ I just want to announce that I with parliamentary work. There was a time we felt nate to witness the beginning of do not agree with the idea for tunate to witness the economic life in Kuwait and that the developments taking beginning of economic life in learn how stock markets work place right now are normal because citizens feel hopeless Kuwait and learn how stock markets work and reap gains, and reap gains, until the global and lost. Lawmakers, including the until the global economic cri- economic crisis exposed the blocs, are sis exposed the flaws in the flaws in the state’s economy. We opposition required today to cooperate state’s economy. We began hating everything that has to began hating everything that with Cabinet of HH Sheikh do with economy as we has to do with economy as we Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah to contain the current situation watched companies crumble. watched companies crumble. and pave the way for reformThere was a time we felt ing the legislative authority. fortunate to be following up That will be more effective to with Kuwait’s success in international sport until the field turned into a night- help reassure worried citizens than making angry mare due to disgraceful conflicts that left us hating statements to stage public protests against alleged plots. This is because everyone knows that everything that has to do with sports. There was a time we felt fortunate to have a constitutional amendments cannot be made withlegal system which protected us and helped settle out HH the Amir’s approval. —Al-Rai


To safeguard these industrial cities exclusively for women, the proposal demands that ‘the factories be surrounded by high fences to maintain safety and privacy. The projects also call for employment of trustwor thy guards to watch the gates and oversee the movement of workers and visitors’.

women raises far more questions than it resolves. In the first place, this country relies heavily on imported labour to do the manual work in any large industry. And they are all men. Somebody has to undertake the physically strenuous work of setting up these cities. And those wearing hard hats in construction areas today are exclusively men. Are we expec ted to see Saudi women in over-alls soon? Once such facilities are built, it takes an army of skilled tradesmen to keep the infrastructure intact and the operations running. Electricians, plumbers, welders, carpenters and the like are on 24-hour call in such cities. Their presence prevents or minimises any breakdowns resulting in production delays. Women opting for such professions are rare in this part of the world, and I would not be wrong to assume that in Saudi Arabia there are no more than a handful of women who have any experience at all as tradeswomen. After these cities are built and secured with high fences, what would happen in the event of a fire or such calamity? Would exclusively male civil defence forces be allowed to enter an allfemale environment to combat the blaze, or would the Commission for the Promotion of Good and the Prevention of Vice take an opposing stand? These issues are real and should be addressed in such studies. And how do these industrial cities address the issue of women commuting to work? Present laws prevent women from driving. Will their fathers, husbands or drivers drop them outside the cities and let them find their way in, all covered in black, with the temperature outside hovering in the 50 degrees Celsius range? What if an emergency crops up and a woman has to leave her work site? How will she get around? As for ‘trustworthy guards’, what will the selection criteria be? Are they going to be men? Would there be extensive background or psychological tests to determine their suitability for the job? Would they be armed? Indeed, these ‘feasibility studies’ raise more questions than they answer. And fail to address one question. Is there a legitimate need for gender segregation in a professional environment or should women’s factories and businesses be absorbed in the industrial areas of any city?


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


Sharp increase in online shopping in Kuwait KUWAIT: Online shopping has noticeably grown in Kuwait due to various reasons such as save of effort, time and availability of a wide-scale display of items that can be easily examined. Laden Al-Abdul-Razzag, owner of the store, Walkin Closet, for clothes and accessories of internationally renowned labels, said her promotion of the items through the internet, namely social websites the Facebook and Twitter, resulted in increasing number of her customers. Easy promotion of the store and its items enhanced its reputation not only locally but also abroad, Abdul-Razzag said. Interaction with the clients on the internet, namely exchange of ideas and proposals, has contributed in upgrading services and promoting the products, she affirmed. Ali Abdul-Rahman, an employee at a local bank, said he entirely depends on the electronic shopping, particularly for purchase of electronic sets, spare parts and telephones, but he abstains from resorting to the websites for buying other items such as shoes and clothes, fearing that sizes may not fit. However, some dealers can be sought for they accept return of the purchased goods. His purchase surfing covers food, movies, household items and needs as well as personal things, that are delivered within maximum one hour. Nora Al-Mefrej, a media company staff member, said surveying the internet for purchase is easy, diverse and entertaining, where a large amount of commodities can be examined. Such shopping spares her time and effort of the traditional direct shopping, particularly in these times of the year when the weather is too hot, in addition to traffic jams and difficulty of parking the car. Al-Merej shops on the computer other things such as flowers that can be addressed to friends easily. Fatmah Ali says she does not trust such form of dealing and prefers going personally to the markets and malls to closely examine, touch and try the purchased pieces, particularly clothes. However, she scans the sites to examine latest fashion and innovations for preliminary assessment of the item. Moreover, she doesn’t trust electronic payments and favors the traditional way of paying. — KUNA

KUWAIT: The Vice President of the National Guard Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah felicitated National Guard athletes who took part in the 2011/2012 Ministers’ League, a competition featuring teams representing state departments in Kuwait and competing in multiple sports.

Single ‘09 NA session seen ‘safest’ way out of ordeal Al-Kharafi to meet the Amir KUWAIT: The speaker from the 2009 parliament Jassem Al-Kharafi is expected to meet HH the Amir Sheik h Sabah AlAhmad Al-Sabah today after he arrived here from London last night, as part of efforts to discuss the verdict passed by the Constitutional Court last Wednesday. It is speculated that an agreement will be reached on convening at least one session of the 2009 parliament to allow the Cabinet to swear-in before initiating a non-cooperation motion through which HH the Amir can dissolve the parliament constitutionally. According to sources who spoke to AlQabas, 23 legislators in the 2009 parliament plan to attend a session, who in addition to 14 ministers will provide necessary quorum. The opposition who won majority seats in the 2012 parliament are skeptical that a dissolution will happen after one session is held, arguing that a non-cooperation motion can be filed in case of a lack of quorum. The sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, indicate that such situation calls for implementing a variety of measures. Leading oppositionist Musallam Al-Barrak urged Prime Minister

HH Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah on Saturday to work on issuing a dissolution decree ‘immediately,’ calling a potential request for the 2009 parliament to convene “a great misconduct, the repercussions of which will be held directly by the prime minister,” reported Al-Qabas. While they wait for developments to take place, the opposition is reportedly mulling over the option of staging public demonstrations in case the dissolution is prolonged “in order to leave no opportunities for the government to delay the process,” as described by a source close to the ‘Nahaj’ political group that is part of the opposition bloc. In other news, the opposition blocs will await the verdict of the Criminal Court ruling which nine lawmakers face charges in connection with storming the parliament building last November. “There will be retributions if the court takes procedures against MPs, thereby offending the public,” said MP Falah AlSawagh who is an accused. “there is concern that disturbance might take place due to government mismanagement.” The other lawmakers who have been accused are: Dr Waleed Al-Tabtabaei, Khalid Al-Tahous, Jamaan Al-Harbash,

Faisal Al-Mislem, Mubarak Al-Wa’lan, Salem Al-Namlan, Musallam Al-Barrak, and Mohammad Al-Khalifa. They are part of a list of 68 accused which also include former MPs Mohammad Al-Mutair and Fahad Al-Khanna, and who all are repre-

sented by one defense team. They face charges punishable by jail that include unauthorized and forced entry into a public property and property damage, in addition to urging police to disobey orders. — Al-Rai

13,000 deported in two months KUWAIT: Nearly 13,000 expatriates were deported during the past two months in security campaigns held against illegal residents, a local daily reported yesterday quoting Ministry of Interior insiders. Speaking to Al-Rai, sources said that an estimated total of 20,000 were arrested with suspicion of violating the residency law, “including nearly 13,000 who were deported after authorities confirmed that they were living illegally in Kuwait either without a valid visa, with an expired visa or working illegally with different employers.” The total number of residency violators, at the General Immigration Department records, has reduced to less than 90,000 following recent deportations, sources

said, adding that the number is expected to lower even more “as security crackdowns are planned until the end of summer,” reported Al-Rai. In other news, Al-Qabas reported yesterday quoting an anonymous Criminal Investigations Department source that detectives were given orders to form task forces to raid brothels and other venues where illegal activities are being held “which were confirmed by special investigation teams.” The source adds that operations are planned to raid “apartments in Hawally and Salmiya where suspects reportedly plan to host illegal parties during morning hours instead of late night hours,” reported Al-Qabas.


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


US Engineer National Guard unit ready for Kuwait mission Family members bid farewell MOCKSVILLE: Nearly 500 family members and friends said farewell and thank you Friday at a deployment ceremony for 164 soldiers of the 882nd Engineer Company of the NC Army National Guard. The company will travel in mid-July to Kuwait as part of Operation Enduring Freedom. Capt Robert S Day, the company commander, told the audience at the Brock Performing Arts Center in Mocksville that his unit is ready for its mission. “We love our families, friends and our country,” Day said. “We choose to defend them. In order to defend them, we must leave. We want to stand for something. We want to serve.” The company consists of construction engineers, carpenters,

masons, plumbers and electricians, and others, Day said. The unit is composed of detachments from Mocksville, Mount Airy and Taylorsville. For nine months, the company will help maintain Camp Arifjan in Kuwait and support other Army units at the base as those units travel to Afghanistan, said Capt Rick Scoggins, a National Guard spokesman in Raleigh. The National Guard conducted a similar deployment Sunday at Wilkes Community College for its 875th Engineer Company based in North Wilkesboro with a detachment in Lexington. That company also is deploying to Kuwait, in late July. In Mocksville, the audience cheered when the curtains

Multi-national corporations interested in Umm Al-Hayman project KUWAIT: Over 15 multi-national corporations have showed an interest in construction, operations, and management of the expansion project of Umm Al-Hayman sewage water treatment station, said the Partnership Technical Bureau (PTB) on Sunday. The PTB stated that the deadline for applying and filing qualifications by international corporations, local companies and bodies not listed with Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) project was last Thursday, adding that the project is to be executed in line with law 7/2008. This is a key development project to be executed under the supervision of the Ministry of Public Works, it pointed out. The initial phase of the project involves treatment of 500,000 cubic meter sewage per annum, and the capacity will be increased to 700,000 in the second phase, along with the urban expansion in the southern region of the country. After this qualification stage, the KSE-listed companies and bodies are to present their applications for the same project. The PTB had first announced the project back in January. —KUNA

opened and the crowd saw the company’s soldiers standing in formation on the stage. In his remarks, Day commented on the American flags that lined North Main Street in Mocksville. “It is touching to see you all here, and the outpouring of support,” he said. After the 35-minute ceremony ended, the company gathered next door in a gymnasium and sat together on bleachers. First Sgt Johnny D Piggott, the company’s top-ranking sergeant, then ordered the unit to stand at attention. Their family members and friends then took pictures of the company. “I will bring every one of you back,” Piggott said to his company. “That is my solemn promise to you-as long as you lis-

ten to me.” Several soldiers said they were ready for their mission in Kuwait. The unit will travel to Fort Bliss, Texas, before it leaves for Kuwait, Piggott said. Dale and Amanda Hayes of Clemmons, both sergeants, said they will be deployed as Amanda held their son, 4-year-old Tyler. “We are worried about his wellbeing while we will be gone,” Dale Hayes said, adding that the boy will be taken care of by one of Amanda Hayes’ close friends. Spc Carnell Mickens and Spc Savanna Hines are engaged. Hines’ young sons, Jaden and Jordyn, and her mother, Bridget Hines, attended the ceremony. “I’m anxious, but I am ready to do my job,” Mickens said. —MCT

First phase of overhauling aerial sector proceeding KUWAIT: Kuwait International Airport is currently site of a progressing venture for overhauling infrastructure of the national aviation sector, according to an aviation official. Some of the major aspects of the project is installment of a new radar and upgrading automatic landing systems, said Khaled Al-Shayji, Deputy Director General of Civil Aviation for Aerial Navigation Services. Elaborating, he said the first phase of the venture included a “package” of sub projects designed to bolster the infrastructures of the observation and navigation systems, with installment of latest models of radars, surveillance and power networks, as well as networks of basic services, installations and equipment. The renovation of the sector is conducted on bases of standards and recommendations of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), designed for maximum safety, efficiency and order of the aviation operations. Moreover, the ventures include training cadres for administration, operations and maintenance, he said. As to executed projects, Al-Shayji mentioned the control center, the national monitoring and observation center at the

airport, which is the core of the operational systems-building of which is situated on a 112, 500-square-meter plot of land. Another one is construction of the infrastructure of the power station at the air facility. He cited other sub projects within the whole overhaul scheme of the air aviation sector, namely construction of the building and system of monitoring and the new radar system for optimum flights’ safety. Al-Shayji added that the authority would work out, soon, two contracts for two more ventures, one for rapid and digital information exchange among the departments and sectors of the facility, and the other for upgrading the back-up systems for aiding aircraft for landing in bad weather. In this vein, he noted that some of the aircraft are specially equipped to land in extremely bad or dusty weather, and hinted that new devices and guidance systems would be installed to aid planes upon landing, particularly those with limited back-up systems for such conditions. The authority is looking forward to finalize first phase of the overhaul process by 2015, in line with the national strategy of making Kuwait International Airport the main air facility in the region. —KUNA

KUWAIT: Iqbal Qurschi, foreign trade counselor, hosted a party to celebrate the National Day of Luxembourg and the birthday of the Grand Duke of Luxembourg on Saturday at the Crowne Plaza hotel. A number of diplomats and other dignitaries attended the party. —Photos by Joseph Shagra

‘Touch’ becomes the new brand for Lebanon’s mobile provider

Historical, Vintage, Classic Car Museum holds award ceremony KUWAIT: The Historical, Vintage and Classic Car Museum held an Awards Ceremony for thier second Automotive Photography Contest 2012 in the presence of Sheikh Mubarak Sabah Al-Salem AlHomod Al-Sabah, who is a member of the Board of Trustees of the museum. The ceremony took place on Wednesday at the Museum’s Main Exhibition Hall in Shuwaikh. Mustafa Makhseed, Director of committees at the museum, said: “We are happy to hold such a contest, and the management is happy to see developments in the style and quality of entries competing and the increased number of the participants. We hope that the contest will be even bigger and better next year.” He also thanked His Highness Sheikh Nasser Al-Mohammad AlAhmad Al-Sabah for his continuous support to the museum and the youth in Kuwait. He also thanked Sheikh Mubarak for his continuous support and for presenting the awards to the winners. Zakaria Dashti noted that the museum is always keen to set up events to benefit its visitors and members. Regarding the Automotive Photography Contest 2012, he

said: “It is the objective of the museum to provide activities that benefit the community. It’s evident from the popularity of the competition and the images uploaded on social networking sites that our members are interested in photographing cars, so we felt the need to develop this popular hobby. When we compare last year’s photos with this year’s photos, the development in both quality and content is evident.” Fadel Al-Oraier, Director of the library and imaging, said that the museum has built a photography studio inside the museum for photographers to gather and discuss their different experiences. The Winners in the ‘Overall’ category are Yousef Mansour Hassan Qallaf, Nasir Amin Behbehani and Mishary Rashid Abdul Wahab. In the black and white category, the winners are Ahmed AbdulRazak Bin Eid, Zeinab Hussein Mahmoud Al-Sayed and Adnan Ahmed AlEssa. In the colored photograph category, the winners are Samir Abdulrahman Hassan, Ibrahim Yousef AlAwadi and AbdulWahab Ismail Baron. In the logo Categories, the winners are Ali Mohamed Behbehani, Meshal Abdulaziz Al Baqer and Mohammed Ibrahim AlMuhaini.

BEIRUT: Zain Group, a pioneer of mobile telecommunications in the Middle East and North Africa, has revealed the new brand name for its management operation in Lebanon. After many successes and accomplishments achieved in the country over the past eight years under the name “mtc touch”, the company has unveiled a vibrant new brand “Touch - Managed by Zain”. On this occasion, Zain Group’s Chief Executive Officer, Nabeel Bin Salamah said: “The launch of the “Touch” brand, was supported by a significant promotional campaign using the theme: “In My New World”, which is aimed at suppor ting the company ’s strategic direction. The introduction of the new brand also represents the end of Zain Group’s previous “MTC” branding across all of our operations.” Bin Salamah continued: “The launch of this new identity represents Zain Group’s hopes and aspirations in Lebanon’s telecommunications sector, in which the company has achieved several milestones and asserted its leading position especially with a customer base which exceeds two million customers.” To introduce the new brand, “Touch” held an impressive event at a reception venue in Baabdat under the patronage of the Lebanese Minister of Telecommunications, H.E. Nicolas Sehnaoui, and numerous Lebanese dignitaries, government officials, and industry leaders including the Minister of Information, Walid Daouk, the Minister of Agriculture, H.E. Hussein al Hajj Hassan and the representative of the Lebanese Army, Brig Gen Jean Kahwaji, Col Henry Ibrahim, as well as editors and media figures, business partners and Touch management and employees. An extensive entertainment program was scheduled for this event, which peaked with a performance from the superstar Ragheb Alameh who performed some of his best songs from his large repertoire. The master of ceremony for this special event was the renowned media figure Mr. George Kordahi who was

also a guest of honor. The entertainment program also included a show from 8eme art, and an act from “Ma fi Metlo”. Launching this program was the innovative unraveling of the new logo with the laser show from the French performance artist, Theo Dari, followed by a live transmission

since, with the last 12-month renewal coming on Feb 1, 2012. On the occasion of the rebranding, Hisham Akbar, Zain Group’s Chief Commercial Officer said that “Touch - Managed by Zain” values the close collaboration between Zain and the Lebanese government, repre-

BEIRUT: The Lebanese Minister of Telecommunications, Nicolas Sehnaoui, the representative of the Lebanese Army, Brig Gen Jean Kahwaji, Col Henry Ibrahim, Hisham Akbar, Zain Group’s Chief Commercial Officer and Claude Bassil, Touch’s General Manager. from the Touch headquarters at Charles Helou which lit the skies with its light show. Zain Group was first awarded its management contract for “Touch’s” network in June 2004 a deal that lasted for a period of four years, and was characterized by Zain operating and growing one of the two mobile operators in Lebanon. This initial management agreement has been renewed several times

sented by the Ministr y of Telecommunications, which were both instrumental in facilitating the launch of the new brand. Akbar said: “Zain Group has come a long way in the past eight years to establish itself as a valued asset to the people of Lebanon. It has done everything in its power to gain their trust, and today as the new brand is introduced, we enter a new era of service to the society, as we

strive to offer excellent mobile services.” Akbar continued: “As a brand, “Touch” carries a set of values that reinforce positivity and hope of a new world where each and every one of our customers can dream for and work towards a better life.” Nicolas Sehnaoui, the Lebanese Minister of Telecommunications, said: “I would like to congratulate “Touch” on the launch of its new brand, through which it brings alive people’s aspirations and dreams in line with its “In my New World” campaign.” Sehnaoui concluded his speech by saying: “We encourage and support communication, especially that the word “Touch” means communication via mobile network.” At the brand reception, Claude Bassil, “Touch’s” General Manager commented: “This is the last time I address you in the name of mtc touch. This occasion takes me back eight years, specifically to June 2004 when our mother company, Zain (then MTC) won the contract for the operation of MIC2, which went on to carry the brand mtc touch all this time.” “From that time to this, the company has gained the trust of our customers and I am pleased and proud to announce for the first time that the number of customers that “Touch” is currently serving has surpassed two million.” Bassil offered his thanks to the Lebanese Ministry of Telecommunications, which has been a key partner to the success of “Touch” throughout its history. Bassil also extended his gratitude to Zain Group and “Touch” employees alike, as well as to every partner that has contributed to the operator’s growth and success. Part of “Touch’s” successful rebranding campaign involved interacting with customers through social networking websites such as Twitter and Facebook, with many users detailing their dreams and wishes. “Touch” received more than 600 comments and suggestions from customers, as well as additional feedback through other channels related to the company’s “In My New World” campaign.

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

Lugo denounces ouster as president

Tunisia extradites former Gaddafi PM to Libya Page 8

Page 11

HOMS: A handout image released by the Syrian opposition’s Shaam News Network yesterday, shows Syrians carrying the coffin of a person killed during the Syrian army offensive of the restive city of Homs on June 20, 2012. Violence in Syria killed at least 34 people yesterday, more than half of them troops who died in clashes with rebels as the bloodshed reached new heights, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. —AFP

Turkey blames Syria for jet attack, consults NATO Turkey says jet was in international airspace, no warning ANKARA/AMMAN: Turkey accused Syria yesterday of shooting down a military reconnaissance jet in international airspace without warning and called a NATO meeting to discuss a response to Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad. Amid growing acrimony between the once-friendly neighbours, Syria said its forces had shot dead “terrorists” infiltrating its territory from Turkey, which along with Western and Arab nations has backed the cause of Syrians fighting Assad. Turkey’s Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said the search for two missing pilots was still under way, in coordination with the Syrian authorities. He denied it was a “joint” operation. He said the RF-4 Phantom jet had been clearly marked as Turkish and dismissed Syria’s assertion it had not identified the aircraft before opening fire. Davutoglu said he also planned to set out Turkey’s case at the United Nations Security Council where Western powers are seeking, against Russian and Chinese opposition, to push through a motion that could allow stronger measures against Assad. Moscow fears this might lead to military action that could undermine its interests in Syria. What began as demonstrations against Assad developed last year into armed rebellion, tipping the country towards a sectarian civil war, with thousands already killed across Syria. Syrian tanks and artillery shelled the eastern city of Deir alZor yesterday, killing at least 20 people in the second day of bombardment in the oil-producing region, amid heavy fighting with anti-Assad insurgents, opposition activists said. Davutoglu said the jet was unarmed and had been on a solo mission to test domestic radar systems, but acknowledged it had briefly crossed Syrian airspace 15 minutes before it was hit. “Our plane was shot at a distance

of 13 sea miles from Syria’s border in international airspace,” Davutoglu said. “According to the radar images, our plane lost contact with headquarters after it was hit and because the pilot lost control, it crashed into Syrian waters after making abnormal movements,” he said. “Throughout this entire period no warning was made to our plane.” Some analysts said the aircraft, in violating Syrian airspace at a time of great sensitivity, could in fact have been testing Syria’s Russian-supplied radar and air defences, which would be an obstacle to any possible Western armed action. Turkey is prickly about its own airspace and that of north Cyprus, where Turkish troops are deployed. Only last month it scrambled jets to intercept an Israeli plane it said had violated northern Cypriot airspace and demanded an explanation. The foreign ministry said Turkey knew the coordinates of its jet’s wreckage, 1,300 metres underwater, but had not found it. Syria, formally at war with Israel and the target of Israeli air raids in the past, has said the plane was flying fast and low, just one kilometre off its coast when it was shot down as an unidentified intruder. It was only later found to be Turkish. “TERRORIST” INFILTRATORS Turkey shelters the rebel Free Syria Army (FSA) and hosts 32,000 Syrian refugees on its southeastern border with Syria, some 50 km (30 miles) from where the Turkish aircraft was shot down. But it denies providing arms for the insurgents. Syria’s state news agency said Syrian forces had confronted “terrorists” who had crossed the Turkish border into the coastal province of Latakia and killed several of them yesterday. Syria and Turkey share a border 900 km (550 miles) long. As if to underline its military reach, Turkey’s military announced it had carried out air strikes against nine Kurdish

militant targets in northern Iraq in the past three days. Turkey has often bombed Kurdish fighters seeking more autonomy in southeast Turkey and has even sent ground forces across the border to attack their bases in Iraq. Around 8,000 Syrian Kurdish refugees have crossed into Iraqi Kurdistan, fleeing the conflict at home, Masoud Barzani, president of the autonomous region, told a news conference. Turkey’s hostility to Assad has mounted steadily since the Syrian leader ignored its advice to enact democratic reform in response to protests that erupted 16 months ago as part of a wider Arab awakening, rather than violently suppressing them. Assad’s security state, dominated by his minority Alawite sect, is now embroiled in a bloody fight for survival against rebels mostly from Syria’s Sunni Muslim majority. NATO envoys will meet tomorrow at Turkey’s request under Article 4 of the military alliance’s founding treaty, which provides for states to “consult together whenever, in the opinion of any of them, the territorial integrity, political independence or security of any of the parties is threatened”. It stops short of the explicit mention of possible armed responses cited in Article 5. Britain’s foreign minister, William Hague, condemned Syria’s downing of the Turkish jet as an “outrageous act” and said his country was ready to support robust action against Damascus by the United Nations Security Council. SYRIA’S ALLIES Russia and China have previously blocked any firm measures by the council, twice vetoing draft resolutions on Syria. Moscow, which said yesterday it had “no doubt” there were attempts at regime change in Syria, is one of Assad’s main arms suppliers and a firm opponent of

any outside intervention there. It says Western powers would invite an unpredictable spread of violence if they attempted any intervention in the country. A ship carrying Russian helicopters to Syria, which turned back after its insurance was cut, is expected to resume its journey accompanied by at least one other vessel, Interfax reported, citing a military source. Italian Foreign Minister Giulio Terzi condemned the shooting down of the Turkish jet on an “inoffensive flight” as “a further extremely serious and unacceptable action by the Assad regime”. European Union foreign minis-

ters will discuss the Syria crisis, as well as Iran and Egypt, in Luxembourg tomorrow. In a telephone conversation with Davutoglu, Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi, whose government is a staunch backer of Assad, said he hoped both sides would “settle the issue peacefully to maintain regional stability”. Iraq has described the incident as a serious escalation that demonstrated how Syria’s conflict could spread beyond its frontiers and open up ethnic and other tensions in the region. It remains unclear exactly what the Turkish jet had been doing - a reconnaissance mission to support Syrian rebels or

to test Syria’s air defences are among the theories. Syrian anti-aircraft gunners may also have been jumpy after a defecting Syrian pilot flew his fighter to Jordan the previous day. While the incident has aggravated tensions and exposed the risks of Syria’s crisis spilling over its borders, neither Ankara nor Damascus seems likely to seek a military showdown. “What all this tells us is that there are a lot of ‘fishy’ tactics and strategies going on in the region, with numerous players behind many curtains,” said Hayat Alvi, lecturer in Middle Eastern studies at the US Naval War College. — Reuters

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


Protest as Iraq moves to close 44 media outlets BAGHDAD: An Iraqi press freedom group condemned authorities yesterday for ordering the closure of 44 news organizations, including a US-funded radio station. The country’s media commission said it was only targeting unlicensed operations. No media outlet is reported to have been forced to close so far. But critics say Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki, whom they accuse of sidelining and silencing opponents in order to consolidate his Shiite party’s power, is sending a warning to the media. The dispute calls into question the future of Iraq’s fledgling democracy, nine years after the ouster of Saddam Hussein and six months after the last of the US troops who overthrew him withdrew. Ziyad alAajely, head of the Journalistic Freedoms Observatory, called the move to shut down media offices “a setback to the freedom of journalism in

Iraq.” “It is a government message to the media outlets that if you are not with us, then you are against us,” he said by telephone. The list, which officials say was compiled a month ago, only became public yesterday. Most of the 44 newspapers, radio and television stations targeted for shutdown are Iraqi, although foreign broadcasters including the BBC and Voice of America were on the list as well as the US -funded Radio Sawa. The BBC and Voice of America have closed most permanent news operations in Iraq. Safaa Rabie, the head of Iraq’s Communications and Media Commission, said the commission only seeks to close offices without an operating license. He confirmed the commission had forwarded the list to the Ministry of Interior seeking help in shutting the offices down. “It is an organizational matter, not

a crackdown on the press,” Rabie said. However, one broadcaster targeted for shutdown, US -funded Radio Sawa, says it does have a license. “We were surprised to see our radio station on the list because we think that we work in accordance with all Iraqi laws,” Sawa deputy director Salah Nasrawi said. Radio Sawa - operated by Middle East Broadcasting Networks, Inc., which is funded by the US Congress - was broadcasting normally yesterday. Nasrawi would not say why he thought Radio Sawa was on the list. “We do not want to speculate or to launch hasty accusations. Bureaucracy and the delays in the government offices might be behind this.” An official with Jordan-based satellite television station al-Babelyia also said his organization has a valid operating license in Iraq but was nevertheless

on the list for shutdown. Saif Muthana, deputy director for Iraq operations, declined to comment further. While some of the news organizations targeted for shutdown are critical of the government, including Sarqiya and Baghdadia television stations, others are religious broadcasters like Al-Kawthar and the Quran channel and have no apparent political agenda. The Al-Maliki government faced other accusations of press crackdowns in recent days when supporters of firebrand Shiite cleric Muqtada AlSadr staged street protests in Baghdad decrying what they called the muzzling of independent views. “In our beloved Iraq, the government is always interfering in the affairs of media outlets and trying to politicize them,” al-Sadr wrote in a letter to a supporter on a website affiliated with his movement.— AP

Tunisia extradites former Gaddafi PM to Libya First senior official to be sent back for trial

NABLUS: Samaritans pray on Mount Gerizim near the northern West Bank city of Nablus yesterday to mark Shavuot festival, which is giving of the Torah at Mount Sinai seven weeks after the exodus of the Jewish people from Egypt. The Samaritan religion is based on four principles of faith, one God - the God of Israel, one Prophet Moses Ben Amram, the belief in the Torah - the first five books of the Bible and one holy place - Mount Gerizim. —AFP

Israel okays deportation of Ivory Coast migrants JERUSALEM: An Israeli court yesterday upheld government plans to deport illegal migrants from the Ivor y Coast, paving the way for the imminent expulsion of an estimated 2,000 Ivorians. The United Nations declared Ivory Coast “a crisis state” in 2004 after years of civil unrest. But after fighting ended and economist Alassane Ouattara was president as president in 2011, Israel said it was cancelling a long-standing policy of “collective protection” for Ivorian migrants. Yesterday, the Jerusalem District Court rejected a petition by 132 Ivorian emigres requesting that their status be restored, or that alternatively each be enabled to apply for refugee status, or given leave to stay on humanitarian grounds. The petition argued that “based on many international reports, including recent UN reports, the situation in Ivory Coast is still dangerous,” and their status should therefore not change. But the court ruled that the new poli-

cy, based on Israeli foreign ministry evaluations, was reasonable and proportionate. Sabine Hadad, spokeswoman for the interior ministry’s population and migration authority, told AFP there were approximately 2,000 Ivorians in Israel, and that their expulsion would begin in July. Last week, Israel flew home a first plane load of 120 illegal immigrants from South Sudan who it said had agreed to be voluntarily repatriated. Since June 10, Israel has arrested hundreds of Africans in a nationwide roundup with the aim of deporting them. At Sunday’s weekly cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced that a second flight to South Sudan would leave Israel today. “Two additional planes will leave next week,” he added. Hadad said 150 South Sudanese who agreed to leave Israel voluntarily would fly directly to the capital Juba between today and tomorrow. — AFP

TRIPOLI: Tunisia extradited former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi’s prime minister to Libya yesterday, a Libyan security official said, making him the first senior official to be sent back for trial under the country’s transitional leadership. Defence ministry official Mohammed al-Ahwal told Reuters that a helicopter had transferred Al Baghdadi Ali al-Mahmoudi to the capital Tripoli. “Mahmoudi is now in Tripoli and we are holding him in a prison.” A security official at the prison, who declined to be named, told Reuters that Mahmoudi was undergoing medical checks. Mahmoudi served as the Libyan dictator’s prime minister from 2006 until he fled to neighbouring Tunisia around the time that rebel fighters took Tripoli in August. His extradition could establish a precedent for other countries who have given refuge to or arrested members of Gaddafi’s old entourage. Libya’s government and the International Criminal Court - which indicted Gaddafi’s son Saif al-Islam in June for crimes against humanity stemming from the crackdown on last year’s revolt have argued for months over where he should be tried. Tripoli considers it a matter of national pride and a measure of the country’s transformation for Saif al-Islam’s and other Gaddafi loyalists trials to be held in Libya. But human rights groups have questioned whether Libya’s justice system can meet the standards of international law and say he should be handed over to the ICC instead. Mabrouk Khorchid, Mahmoudi’s lawyer in Tunisia, said neither he nor the former Libyan prime minister’s family had been given any prior warning that he was about to be extradited. “I believe this is a state crime and is against human rights,” he said. “This is a sad moment for human

TUNIS: This file photo taken on October 28, 2010 shows Libyan Secretary of the General People’s Committee (Prime Minister) al-Baghdadi al-Mahmoudi upon his arrival in Tunis. —AFP rights in Tunisia. I think he’s going to be tortured and treated illegally and believe that those who handed him over bear part of the responsibility.” Khorchid said he had not been allowed to see his client for 20 days and had heard that Mahmoudi had been placed in solitary confinement and had suffered a nervous breakdown since Tunisia’s justice minister said last month that an extradition was imminent. “We called the presidency and they said they had not signed the


in brief

Clash in south Yemen kills 2 soldier, 3 saboteurs SANAA: Yemeni military officials say a gunbattle between troops and a group of men trying to sabotage a power line in the south left two soldiers and three saboteurs dead. The officials say the gunbattle started overnight in Marib province when soldiers tried to prevent an attack on the power line but the saboteurs opened fire at them. The officials say the army is sending in reinforcements to the area. They spoke on condition of anonymity according to regulations. Minister of Electricity Saleh Soubai said Saturday that former president Ali Abdullah Saleh had hired men to sabotage electricity towers that feed large parts of the country with power. Sanaa has been hit by black-outs for four days now. Yemenis rallied yesterday in several cities and towns against fuel and electricity shortages.

Convicted Bahraini doctor ends 4-day hunger strike DUBAI: A Bahraini doctor, sentenced to one year in jail for his role in last year’s anti-government protests, said yesterday that he has ended his four-day hunger strike. Saeed Al-Samaheji, one of 20 doctors and nurses who faced charges for their role in Bahrain’s Arab Spring uprisings, said the hunger strike was a move by “medics to reject and object to the court’s verdicts.” Samaheji began the strike Thursday after an appeals court cut his jail term to one year along with eight other medics and acquitted nine others for their role in the protests, in a case widely criticised by human rights groups. Two medics arrested in the crackdown, who remain at large, did not appeal. The medics worked at Manama’s Salmaniya Medical complex, stormed by security forces after a crackdown on a protest camp in the capital’s nearby Pearl Square in March 2011. The 18 who had been arrested have been out on bail since September. The medics had faced a series of charges, including occupying the medical centre and possessing weapons, while denying Sunni Muslims access to the hospital as Shiite demonstrators camped in the car park. They have always insisted on their innocence. “The medics

made huge efforts to save the wounded during last year’s events,” Samaheji said at a centre belonging to Al-Wefaq, the main Shiite opposition group, after declaring an end to his hunger strike. Many of the 20 medics — 15 of whom are doctors-alleged they were tortured in prison. Separately, Al-Wefaq said that a protester, who was injured while trying to protect Bahrain’s opposition leader Sheikh Ali Salman from security forces at a protest last week, remained “in critical condition” in hospital. Ali Mohammed Al-Muwali suffered “a broken skull which was caused by a direct hit by a bullet” on Friday when “he was surrounding Sheikh Ali Salman,” Al-Wefaq said. Salman was also wounded with rubber bullets “in his shoulder and back” during the protest in the Bilad Al-Qadeem village, three kilometres (around two miles) from Manama, Al-Wefaq said. Protests have intensified in villages around the capital since the March 2011 crackdown ended month-long Shiite-led protests in Manama’s Pearl Square. Amnesty says 60 people have been killed since the protests erupted in February 2011 in the Gulf kingdom ruled by the Sunni Al-Khalifa dynasty. — AFP

Israeli police arrest 85 after rally turns violent

GAZA CITY: The head of Gaza’s Hamas government Ismail Haniya, holds up the Palestinian flag (L) and the Egyptian flag (R) as he celebrates in Gaza City after the Muslim Brotherhood’s presidential candidate Mohamed Morsi (poster behind) was declared the winner of the Egyptian elections yesterday. Morsi was declared the first president of Egypt since a popular uprising ousted Hosni Mubarak, capping a tumultuous and divisive military-led transition. —AFP

Israel vows tough action on Gaza if truce fails

JERUSALEM: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting in his Jerusalem office yesterday.—AP

extradition order and we were surprised that he was handed over like this,” he said. A Tunisian court ruled as far back as November that Mahmoudi should be extradited. But Tunisian President Moncef al-Marzouki later said the handover would not happen until the situation in Libya had stabilized and Mahmoudi could be guaranteed a fair trial after Gaddafi himself was killed by rebels and his rotting corpse left on display. — Reuters

JERUSALEM: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said yesterday that Israeli troops had responded “forcefully” to rocket fire from Gaza and could step up their response if a fragile truce failed to hold. “Regarding the situation in the south, the Israeli army acted forcefully against those who try to attack us and, if necessary, the army will act more forcefully still,” Netanyahu warned at the start of a cabinet meeting. “Our policy is to use force to restore security and calm to the residents of the south,” he added. Netanyahu spoke as a fragile second attempt at a truce between Israel and armed groups in Gaza wobbled, with the Israeli military saying three rockets fired from the Palestinian territory landed in the southern Eshkol region. The rockets caused no damage or injuries, a military spokeswoman told AFP, but they threatened the prospects for the ceasefire that began at midnight on Saturday. A previous truce, announced on Wednesday, had begun to unravel with Gaza rulers Hamas threatening to call it off altogether, as Palestinian officials said three peo-

ple were killed and dozens wounded in seven Israeli air strikes on Saturday. An army spokeswoman said that by Saturday evening 28 rockets had slammed into southern Israel that day and on Friday, with another 10 brought down by Israel’s Iron Dome air defence system. The current round of Israeli attacks and Palestinian retaliation began with air strikes on June 18, just hours after gunmen from Sinai carried out an ambush along Israel’s southern border with Egypt, killing an Israeli civilian. Israel has said its sudden spike in Gaza operations was “in no way related” to the Sinai border incident, with the military saying the air force was targeting militants poised to attack the Jewish state. Since last Monday, 15 Palestinians have been killed and several dozen others have been wounded, most of them militants, in multiple Israeli air strikes. At least 152 rockets and mortar rounds have been fired into Israel from Gaza, wounding five Israelis including four border policemen. — AFP

JERUSALEM: Israeli police say 85 protesters were arrested after clashing with officers and vandalizing banks in Tel Aviv. The demonstrators had gathered Saturday night to protest the arrest of 12 social activists a day earlier. Some blocked main roads and scuffled with police. Police say others shattered windows on five banks. Media reported that in one case, protesters charged inside a bank and planted a tent, the symbol of social protests that swept the country last summer. Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld says police made the arrests to prevent looting. He estimated there were 1,500 demonstrators in the protests, though media reports gave a number four times higher. Activist leader Daphni Leef accused police of brutality, saying officers bruised and humiliated her when they detained her Friday. She was released on bail.

Israel court asked for delay on settlement outpost JERUSALEM: The Israeli government has asked the Supreme Court to delay the dismantling of an illegal Jewish settlement enclave in the West Bank for seven months. The government had pledged to evict the two dozen families living in the Givat Assaf settlement outpost by July 1. The outpost was built without official authorization and was constructed on privately held Palestinian land. Israel considers this illegal, even as it approves construction on other captured territory. In its petition to the court, the government says it has “significant new information” about Givat Assaf that requires exploring. It did not elaborate. But the Maariv newspaper reported yesterday that the military has discovered old documents that contradict Palestinian claims to owning the land. The Palestinians want all of the West Bank for their future state.

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


Sect member dies, prison break frees 40 in Nigeria MAIDUGURI: A top radical Islamist sect member blamed for a deadly Christmas Day church bombing in Nigeria has been killed by security forces, says the sect, which demonstrated in a prison break yesterday that his death has not affected its ability to keep fighting. A statement attributed to the Boko Haram sect and obtained yesterday by The Associated Press said the group is happy about Habibu Bama’s “martyrdom.” Bama, a former soldier, died after sustaining injuries from a gun battle between security forces and the sect in

the northeastern city of Damaturu earlier last week, Nigeria’s State Security Service said. The battle occurred from Monday to Tuesday as authorities fought back against the sect that struck six churches, five primary schools, a police station and a police outpost, authorities said. Bama had been declared wanted in connection with the Dec 25 bombing of St. Theresa Catholic Church in the town of Madalla, just outside of the capital, Abuja, killing at least 44 people. Officials also believe he was involved in

a federal police headquarters bombing last June and the United Nations headquarters suicide car bombing in Abuja last August that killed 25 people. Boko Haram claimed responsibility for all three attacks last year. It is also held responsible for more than 620 deaths this year alone, according to an AP count. The Nigerian government has failed to corral the growing sectarian violence, leading President Goodluck Jonathan Friday to fire the West African nation’s security adviser and defense minister. Security forces in Damaturu

were still reeling from days of sustained sect attacks when Boko Haram raided a police station early yesterday, freeing 40 suspected sect members, said Yobe State Commissioner of police Patrick Egbuniwe. He said one inmate was killed in the ensuing gun battle, and a prison warden was wounded. The sect has launched several prison breaks in the past. A prison break in the central Nigerian town of Koton-Karifi in Kogi state freed 119 inmates in February. It mirrored a massive prison break in the

northeastern city of Bauchi in September 2010 when Boko Haram freed about 700 inmates. Nigeria’s prisons remain overcrowded and understaffed, with the majority of those imprisoned waiting for years for trials that likely will never come. A 2007 study by Amnesty International called the system “appalling,” with children remaining locked up with their parents and guards routinely bribed by inmates. Despite pledges by the government to reform the system, it remains largely the same today.— AP

Nigerian Christian worship subdued by church bombs Many stay away from church fearing bombs

KHARTOUM: Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir (C) arrives at Khartoum’s Friendship Hall to address a working women’s state organisation yesterday, one day after protesters hurled stones, burned tyres and blocked roads in the Sudanese capital on the eighth day of widening unrest sparked by rising prices. —AFP

Sudan steps up protest crackdowns CAIRO: Sudanese security forces used tear gas to break up anti-regime demonstrations in Khartoum on Sunday, opposition figures said, as the government vowed to press ahead with economic austerity measures that set off a wave of unrest last weekend. In messages broadcast by the Sudanese state media, the regime threatened “stern measures” against the protests, which first targeted the austerity moves but have expanded to include calls for the ouster of longtime President Omar al-Bashir. Several hundred students gathered at Khartoum University, where the demonstrations started eight days ago, said Kamal Omar of the Popular Congress Party. He said pro-government “militias” attacked them. Other opposition figures said police fired tear gas to break up the rally and arrested dozens of students. The official SUNA news agency reported late Saturday that authorities

instructed police to “deal sternly with saboteurs.” The regime is determined that “subversive incidents” would not deter it from implementing recent economic decisions, the news agency said. Protesters reject a government austerity plan that slashed subsidies and doubled the price of fuel and food. They also appear to be inspired by Arab Spring uprisings that brought down regimes in neighboring Egypt and Libya and are demanding the downfall of al-Bashir’s regime. Demonstrations have been concentrated near Khartoum University on the banks of the Blue Nile river but have also spread to the city’s far-flung outskirts and at least one provincial capital. Representatives of Sudan’s opposition parties say they have been meeting to come up with a unified stand on the protests. Police and security forces have arrested a number of party leaders in the past days, they say.—AP

Ecuador ambassador briefed on Assange in Sweden: Official STOCKHOLM: Ecuador’s ambassador in Stockholm has been briefed by Swedish officials on the country’s judicial system, as Quito mulls whether to offer WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange asylum, the justice ministry said yesterday. “Two civil servants told him how the Swedish judicial system works and how the European arrest warrant system works,” Anna Erhardt, a spokeswoman for Justice Minister Beatrice Ask, told AFP. She said the ambassador had taken the initiative to Thursday’s encounter, but refused to comment further on the meeting. Assange has taken refuge in the Ecuadorian embassy in London since Tuesday when he asked Quito for political asylum in a last-ditch effort to avoid extradition to Sweden where he is wanted for alleged sex crimes. Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa has said he is considering the request, but stressed that the decision would not be rushed, and has recalled Ecuador’s ambassador in London to brief him on the situation. Assange, a former computer hacker, who is wanted by Sweden to face allegations of rape and sexual assault against two women, will remain in the embassy building until a decision is reached. The 40-year-old Australian national fears

Stockholm will turn him over to the United States, which he says wants to try him for leaking US secrets. His whistleblowing website WikiLeaks enraged Washington by publishing a flood of classified US information about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as more than 250,000 classified US diplomatic cables. There is however no current US indictment against him and Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr insisted in an interview with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation yesterday he had “received no hint that (the Americans) have got a plan to extradite him to the US.” Sweden, which has seen its judicial system come under attack during Assange’s marathon legal battle to block Britain from extraditing him, has meanwhile insisted it only wants to question Assange about his alleged sex crimes. The Swedish prosecution authority has stressed it will be bound by the so-called “principle of specialty,” meaning it cannot try Assange for any crimes other than those stated in the European arrest warrant. It also has also said it cannot legally send him to the United States without an official request from Washington, something it says it has not received, and without permission from Britain, the original surrendering country.— AFP

ST PETERSBURG: Young people brave the rain as they watch fireworks above the Neva River in St. Petersburg, late on Saturday, during the “Scarlet Sails,” a romantic holiday with laser show to honour high schools graduates. “Scarlet Sails” is the title of a story by Alexander Grin, the story of a young girl, who never gave up on her dreams and they finally arrived on the ship with the scarlet sails. —AFP

KANO/ABUJA: Anthonia Eke is trusting God to end an Islamist insurgency in northern Nigeria but won’t be praying in church any more, after a string of bombs at Sunday services. Some churches in northern Nigeria, usually packed with worshippers, were almost empty yesterday morning and many people stayed away in other parts of the country after a week of violence in religiously-mixed Kaduna state. At least 92 people were killed in the tit-fortat attacks between Muslims and Christians in Kaduna last week, sparked by suicide bombings at three churches last Sunday that killed 19 people and were blamed on Islamist sect Boko Haram. “We are still traumatised over the attacks and have no intention to attend church service until total peace and normalcy are restored,” Eke told Reuters in Kano, Nigeria’s second-largest city after Lagos. “God understands our situation here so we have decided to pray at home. Only he can end this pain.” There were fewer than usual at churches in the capital Abuja, which sits in the centre of the country where the largely Muslim north and mostly Christian south

meet. But hundreds still queued to pass through military checkpoints outside the largest churches in Abuja, and hundreds of thousands of worshippers around the country were determined to attend regardless of the risks. “They will always tell you that they would prefer to die in the house of God than dying in nightclubs or dying in the streets,” said Franklin Okoye, president of a church society in Abuja. Religion plays a key role for almost everyone in Africa’s most populous nation, where “Thank God” and “Inshallah” are as common greetings as “hello” or “how are you?” The escalating violence has raised fears of wider sectarian conflict in Africa’s top oil producer, which is reeling from months of attacks on government buildings and churches by followers of Boko Haram. Boko Haram admit responsibility for some of the attacks but deny others, and security sources and many Nigerians believe their name is used as a cover for other groups aiming to stoke religious tensions. “There seems to be some political undertones because for some time now people have been attacking the churches perhaps with a view to getting a

reaction from the Christendom so that there will be a war in the country,” said John Abuere, a parishioner in Abuja. Similar violence in the past has usually failed to spark sustained conflict in a nation whose Muslims and Christians mostly co-exist peacefully, despite periodic flare-ups of sectarian violence since independence from Britain in 1960. “We do not preach gospel of retaliation, we preach peace ... security is everybody’s concern whether you are in your house or you are in the market or in the church or you are in the Mosque,” said Father John Sixtus Okonkwo, priest at Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Abuja. President Goodluck Jonathan, a Christian from the southern oil-producing region, has been criticised for not stemming the flow of violence in the north, a region his opponents say he is out of touch with. Jonathan traveled to Brazil for a sustainability summit at the height of the violence in Kaduna last week, drawing anger from many Nigerians. He sacked his defence minister and national security adviser on Friday, a move foreign diplomats said was long overdue. — Reuters


in brief

Strong 6.6 quake hits Russia’s Far East coast MOSCOW: A strong 6.6 magnitude quake struck Russia’s Far East yesterday off the eastern coastline of the Kamchatka peninsula, causing no damage or injuries, news reports said. The quake hit at around 0315 GMT at a depth of 66 kilometres (41 miles) some 50 kilometres from Cape Ozerny, which faces the Bering Sea off the peninsula’s northern edge, RIA Novosti quoted the local geological service as saying. The United States Geological Survey had earlier estimated the earthquake’s magnitude at 6.1. RIA Novosti said the local emergencies ministry noted “no negative consequences” from the earthquake but provided no other details. Stolen Rodin bust by Camille Claudel found in France LYON: A bronze bust of Auguste Rodin by sculptor Camille Claudel has been found in an antique shop near Lyon after it was stolen 13 years ago leading to the arrest of two men, police said. The 8 kg bust, which is valued at around 1 million euros ( $ 1 . 2 5 m i l l i o n ) , w a s d i s c o ve re d o n Saturday during a police investigation into a series of robberies in the region. The relationship between the two sculptors is considered to be one of the most artistically fruitful and passionate turn-oft h e - c e n t u r y l o ve a f f a i r s. R o d i n a n d Claudel made a number of sculptures of each other. An antiques dealer was spotted loading his van with a suspicious object and arrested on June 19 in Montbrisson, 60 km east of Lyon. The object turned out to be the Rodin bust, which was stolen in 1999 at the Gueret museum, near Clermont Ferrand in central France. The judicial investigation was opened by the Lyon public prosecutor to determine how the men got hold of the masterpiece. Police gave no details of the second suspect who was arrested. Heavy storms in central S Africa kill 2 J O H A N N E S B U R G : O f f i c i a l s s ay h e av y storms across central South Africa killed a woman at her farmhouse and a man holidaying at a popular resort. Police spokeswoman Majang Sk alk ie said yesterday that the woman died when high winds ripped the roof from her home near Bethlehem, about 260 kilometers (160 miles) south of Johannesburg. Sk alk ie said Saturday ’s storm damaged several other homes and downed power lines. Craig Lambinon, spokesman for South Africa’s National Sea Rescue Institute, said the man was among 14 young adults holidaying at the Vaal Dam water resort just south of Johannesburg. Lambinon said the house in which the group was staying was one of three that collapsed in what he described as a tornado. The S outh African Weather Service could not confirm a tornado struck.

MIRANDOLA: Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, center, walks in a section which is off limits because of dangerous buildings during the Dalai Lama’s visit in Mirandola, northern Italy yesterday.—AP

Dalai Lama visits scene of Italy quakes MIRANDOLA: The Dalai Lama visited emergency camps in northeast Italy housing thousands of people who were hit by two deadly earthquakes in May, Italian media reported yesterday. Visiting the town of Mirandola, in the hard-hit Emilia Romagna region, the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader told people not to lose hope. “You must be determined, that is the only thing that will help you build a new house and face the future,” he said, calling the zone a “disaster”. “It is not fair to come to a catastrophe zone like this empty-handed and so I have decided to donate $50,000 (40,000 euros) to the population,” he said. The quakes, which hit on May 20 and May 29 with a magni-

tude of 6.0 and 5.8, killed 25 people and toppled houses, factories and historic churches and clocktowers. Over 15,000 people were left temporarily homeless and just over 14,000 are still living in emergency structures, including schools, barracks and 37 tent camps, according to Italy ’s Civil Protection Agency. The Dalai Lama will next travel to Matera in the southern Bari region to take part in a debate with fellow Nobel Peace Prize laureates Betty Williams and Rigoberta Menchu, then go on to Scanzano Jonico, nicknamed the city of peace, before ending his tour in Milan on June 26. Pope Benedict XVI is also due to visit the quake zones on Tuesday.— AFP

Police in Zimbabwe investigate FM HARARE: Zimbabwean police said yesterday they had launched an investigation connected with finance minister Tendai Biti, and a state-owned newspaper said the probe was over the disappearance of $20 million in a failed bank. Biti told the Sunday Mail he was not responsible for the missing money, which was part of a 2009 emergency International Monetary Fund (IMF) facility and intended to help distressed manufacturing firms. The paper said Biti had transferred the money from the IMF into local bank Interfin, closed this month due to a liquidity crisis. “Yes the money is missing. The fact that Interfin was appointed the fund manager means it was them who were handling the money and not me,” he told the Sunday Mail. “I no longer had a say on how the money was managed.” Assistant police commissioner Wayne Bvudzijena told Reuters yesterday: “There is an investiga-

tion going on but I cannot give any details at the moment.” Biti could not be directly contacted yesterday. Biti is a senior figure in Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), which is in an uneasy power-sharing administration with President Robert Mugabe’s ZANU-PF. He is among MDC leaders bitterly attacked by Mugabe in recent months. The $20 million, part of a $500 million IMF emergency package, had been at Interfin for a year without generating interest before it disappeared, the newspaper said. The money had been part of $150 million allocated for agriculture and infrastructure projects. A further $142 million was used to pay off a debt to the IMF’s Poverty Reduction and Growth Fund and $110 million to ease a cash squeeze at the beginning of this year. The remaining funds are yet to be used.— Reuters

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


Shadow of leftist protests hangs over Mexico election MEXICO CITY: With just a week to go until Mexico’s presidential election, leftist contender Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has stirred up fears of a repeat of the chaos caused when he led massive protests after his narrow defeat in 2006. As his hopes of victory fade, the former mayor of Mexico City has talked up the prospect of voter fraud robbing him of victory on July 1 - the same accusation he made six years ago when he brought much of the capital to a standstill for weeks. Fueled by a burst of student-led opposition to front-runner Enrique Pena Nieto of the opposition Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), Lopez Obrador saw a poll rally in late May, with one showing him just four percentage points adrift of his rival. That surge has now ended and most polls show him to be at least 10 points behind Pena Nieto. Some recent surveys even show Lopez Obrador to have fallen back behind Josefina Vazquez Mota of the ruling National Action Party (PAN). However, the 58-year-old says his campaign’s data show him to be slightly ahead, and he has told supporters to look out for a repeat of the tricks he says denied him victory in 2006. Another close finish would raise the risk of a new post-vote crisis and

likely trigger legal challenges and street protests. But if Pena Nieto wins by the wide margin many polls are predicting, any fraud claims would ring hollow and unrest would likely be short-lived and on a smaller scale. Lopez Obrador and his campaign team last week accused the PRI of planning to pay voters to cast ballots for Pena Nieto and asserted that state governors from the centrist PRI had agreed to guarantee their candidate a certain number of votes. “Buying votes is a crime. We are going to issue a call to avoid election fraud,” Lopez Obrador told supporters at a rally in the central state of Guanajuato. His campaign also raised the prospect of fraud by Vazquez Mota and the PAN. His comments stoked a war of words with the PRI, which dismissed the claims and accused him of preparing another post-election conflict without offering any proof of wrongdoing. Often dubbed “Peje”, a tough type of swamp fish in his native state of Tabasco, Lopez Obrador almost won in 2006 by leading mass marches and condemning Mexico’s “mafia” of rich and powerful oligarchs. But he alienated many supporters after losing to Felipe Calderon of the PAN by just 0.56 percentage points.

Lopez Obrador declared himself the “legitimate president” and his protests shut down central parts of Mexico City for weeks. He has toned down his rhetoric in this campaign, calling for a “loving republic” and reaching out to business groups. But he has also sent contradictory messages on whether he will launch protests if he loses, saying he will respect the results while also accusing his rivals of preparing election fraud. Lopez Obrador’s aides say they will not remain idle if there is evidence of fraud. “The last thing we want to do is what we did six years ago, and I’m sure it won’t happen. But it will also depend on what (our rivals) do,” said his close aide Manuel Camacho. “If there are irregularities during the election, of course we will go to court and there will be dissent.” PROTESTS The May surge in support for Lopez Obrador drew on a flurry of youth activism against Pena Nieto and the PRI, whose 71-year rule was tainted by cronyism, corruption and authoritarianism. The PAN ended the PRI’s hold on power in an election in 2000. The most prominent student group ‘Yo soy

132’ (I am 132), helped to bring out tens of thousands of protesters against Pena Nieto during the campaign, but has said it won’t mobilize more demonstrations unless it suspects fraud. Election authorities insist there is no room for vote rigging, particularly given that members of the main parties will be monitoring more than 143,000 voting booths. Mexican financial markets have bet on a Pena Nieto win, so a close finish that puts his mandate and economic reforms at risk could fray nerves and hit asset prices. Pedro Tuesta, an economist with 4Cast in Washington, said he does not expect a fresh post-election crisis as long as the winner has a margin of at least 5 percentage points. With the chaos of Lopez Obrador’s protests that clogged up the capital’s main avenue Reforma still seared into the public consciousness, many Mexicans are holding their breath. “I hope the man keeps his word. It would really affect us if they close down (Reforma) again,” said Carlos Equino, 31, who sells snacks in the city’s sprawling Chapultepec Park. “Let’s hope he’s a gentleman this time and just like he told people to take to the streets, this time tells them not to.” — Reuters

Lugo denounces ouster as president ‘parliamentary coup not based on proper evidence’

COLORADO: A slurry bomber drops fire retardant on a blaze near Colorado Springs, Colorado, Saturday. The fire started Saturday and has grown to an estimated 600 acres. — AP

Critics blast Tennessee’s ‘no holding-hands bill’ NASHVILLE: Spurred by a classroom demonstration involving a sex toy, Tennessee recently enacted a pro-abstinence sex education law that is among the strictest in the nation. The most debated section of the bill bars educators from promoting so-called “gateway sexual activity.” But supporters seemed too squeamish during floor debate to specify what that meant, so critics soon labeled it the “no holding-hands bill.” One thing missing from the debate in the Legislature was a discussion of whether the law signed by Republican Gov. Bill Haslam last month really would help reduce Tennessee’s high teenage pregnancy rate. Experts say it won’t and warn that it leaves teenagers inadequately educated about sexuality and prevention of pregnancy and disease. Tennessee’s pregnancy rate among girls 15 to 17 has dropped steadily since the first abstinence-focused sex education curriculum was put in place in the 1990s, according to figures from the state Commission on Children and Youth. In 2009, the latest data available, there were 29.6 pregnancies per 1,000 girls, down from a rate of 48.2 in 1998. Yet the state’s teen pregnancy rate remains one of the highest in the nation, according to the New York-based Guttmacher Institute, a reproductive health research organization. Elizabeth Nash, state issues manager for the institute, said state lawmakers across the country began considering more comprehensive sex education programs that talked about abstinence, but also included contraception, about 10 years ago. Despite declining pregnancy rates around the country, Nash said, there’s been a shift by states over the past two

years to promote abstinence-only education. A Utah bill that would have prohibited any discussion of contraception or homosexuality in sex education classes passed the Legislature but was vetoed by the governor. “Our perspective is that comprehensive sex education is appropriate and necessary for young people,” she said. “What we know ... from the research is that comprehensive sex education works. It delays sexual activity, it reduces the number of partners teens have, and it increases contraceptive use. There is very little in the way of any rigorous research that shows that abstinence education has any of these long-term benefits.” Barry Chase, president of Planned Parenthood Greater Memphis Region, agreed. “This bill ties the hands of educators in Tennessee and will prevent them from providing the comprehensive education that students want and need and their parents expect,” he said. Rep. Jim Gotto, who sponsored the legislation, disputed the way the bill is being characterized. “It’s not abstinence-only education,” said the Nashville Republican. “I’m so sick of people trying to spin it as that ... because they don’t like it. The law does specify that the curriculum has to be abstinence-focused, but they can talk about contraception.” Proponents contend abstinence is the most reliable way to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Tennessee education officials have said abstinence is already defined in the state’s statute, and Haslam said he decided to sign the bill after they assured him it changed little. —AP

1-in-4 uncommitted now in White House race: Poll WASHINGTON: They shrug at President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney. They’re in no hurry to decide which one to support in the White House race. And they’ll have a big say in determining who wins the White House. Onequarter of US voters are persuadable, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll, and both Obama and Romney will spend the next four months trying to convince these fickle, hard-to-reach individuals that only he has what it takes to fix an ailing nation. It’s a delicate task. These voters also hate pandering. “I don’t believe in nothing they say,” says Carol Barber of Iceland, Ky., among the 27 percent of the electorate that hasn’t determined whom to back or that doesn’t have a strong preference about a candidate. Like many uncommitted voters, the 66-year-old Barber isn’t really paying attention to politics these days. She’s largely focused on her husband, who just had a liver transplant, and the fact that she had to refinance her home to pay much of his health bill. “I just can’t concentrate on it now,” she says before adding, “If there were somebody running who knows what it’s like to struggle, that would be different.” John Robinson, a 49-year-old general contractor from Santa Cruz, Calif., is paying a bit more attention, but is just as turned off by both candidates. “I’m just bitter about everybody. They just keep talking and wavering,” said Robinson, a conservative who backed the GOP nominee in 2008, Arizona Sen. John McCain, but is undecided between Obama and Romney. “There’s nothing I can really say that’s appealing

about either one of them.” To be sure, many of the 1-in-4 voters who today say they are uncommitted will settle on a candidate by Election Day, Nov 6. Until then, Obama and Romney will spend huge amounts of time and money trying to win their votes, especially in the most competitive states that tend to swing between Republicans and Democrats each presidential election. Obama and Romney face the same hurdle, winning over wavering voters without alienating core supporters they need to canvass neighborhoods and staff telephone banks this fall to help make sure their backers actually vote. “It presents an interesting challenge to the campaigns,” said Steve McMahon, a founding partner in Purple Strategies, a bipartisan crisis management firm. “Moving to the middle means winning these voters, but it also means creating problems with your base.” Obama has sought to straddle both the left and the middle by announcing policies that expand access to contraception and allow immigrants brought illegally to the United States as children to be exempted from deportation and granted work permits if they applied. Both issues are popular with his core supporters and centrist voters. The president also is promoting a list of what he says are bipartisan measures that would help homeowners, veterans, teachers and police officers, and he accuses Republicans of causing gridlock by refusing to act on them. It’s a pitch intended for independent-minded voters frustrated by inaction in Washington. —AP

ASUNCION: Fernando Lugo emerged early yesterday to denounce his ouster as Paraguay’s president as a “parliamentary coup” and a “foreordained sentence” that was not based on proper evidence. Lugo said his truncated presidency was targeted because he tried to help the South American nation’s poor majority. Asked whether he had any hope of retaking office, Lugo exhorted his followers to remain peaceful but suggested that national and international clamor could lead Paraguayan lawmakers to reverse his impeachment. “In politics, anything is possible,” said Lugo, who termed the Senate’s sudden vote to remove him a coup by political trial.” He also said that Roman Catholic bishops visited him before Friday’s Senate trial for alleged poor performance of duties, and he agreed to accept the outcome of a process he considered illegitimate only to avoid bloodshed. Lugo spoke in a pre-dawn special televised “open microphone” program hosted by a statefunded public television channel that was created by his government. As Saturday turned into yesterday, a long line of speakers queued up in front of the station’s headquarters to vent their frustration over what they called an institutional coup, calling for strikes and protests to demand his return. “We will not recognize any other president,” chanted the crowd of at least 200 people, waving Paraguayan flags and bundled up against the Southern Hemisphere winter. The nighttime protest followed an otherwise sleepy day, when many shops were closed and streets were largely empty. Some alleged that the public station was being censored by the nascent government of Federico Franco. Franco was sworn in after Lugo’s ouster on Friday and set about forming his new government as he promised to honor foreign commitments, respect private property and reach out to Latin American leaders to minimize diplomatic fallout and keep his country from becoming a regional pariah. In a brief appearance before international journalists on Saturday, Franco tried to broadcast a sense of normality. “The country is calm. I was elected (as vice president) in 2008 by popular vote. Activity is normal and there is no protest,” Franco said. His first two appointments were Interior Minister Carmelo Caballero, who will be tasked with maintaining public order in this poor, landlocked South American nation, and Foreign Minister Jose Felix Fernandez, who will immediately hit the road to try to appease fellow members of the Mercosur and Unasur regional trade blocs. “Our foreign minister will go to Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay to meet with authorities and explain to them that there was no break with democracy here. The transition of power through political trial is established in the national constitution,” Franco said. The Paraguayan Senate voted 39-4 to dismiss Lugo a little more than a year before his five-year term was to end. Lugo told reporters Saturday that he intends to remain in politics and is considering a possible run for a Senate seat in next year’s elections. Lugo’s ouster drew swift condemnation around Latin America from leaders who called the

ASUNCION: Paraguay’s former President Fernando Lugo smiles after talking to his followers gathered outside the Public Television building in downtown Asuncion, Paraguay, in the early hours yesterday. — AP impeachment trial, which lasted less than a day, a de facto coup. Several presidents said they would seek Paraguay’s expulsion from regional groups. Regional heavyweight Brazil said late Saturday that its ambassador to Paraguay was called back to Brasilia for consultations. A Foreign Ministry statement said the “Brazilian government condemns the summary removal of the Paraguayan president ... during which the right to a full defense was not assured.” It said the process “compromises a fundamental pillar of democracy, an essential condition for regional integration,” and that President Dilma Rousseff was evaluating what actions to take with its Mercosur and Unasur partners. It added that Brazil would do nothing to “harm the people of Paraguay,” suggesting that it may not intend to cut off economic partnerships with its much poorer neighbor. Argentine President Cristina Kirchner also announced the withdrawal of her ambassador to Paraguay, citing “grave institutional events” and saying the embassy’s No 2 will remain in charge “until democratic order is re-established in that country.” Cuba said Saturday it wouldn’t recognize the new government. Criticism came not just from the left, but from conservative governments, too. Chile said Lugo’s removal “did not comply with the minimum standards of due process,” and Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said “legal procedures shouldn’t be used to abuse. ... What we want is to help stability and democracy be maintained in Paraguay.” Given the tough talk, Franco could find mending fences to be a tall order. “It looks terrible throughout the region,” said analyst Adam Isacson of the Washington Office on Latin America, a think tank. “(Lugo’s ouster) doesn’t look like a deliberative process, and what it looks like is that a presi-

dent can be removed simply for being unpopular, or making unpopular decisions.” “The new government is going to be pretty isolated for the whole time that it’s in power,” Isacson said. “For Paraguay’s neighbors and trade partners, I think there’s probably not great cost involved in isolating the country for a year or more, and then re-recognizing whatever government is elected next year.” That would be a scenario similar to what played out in Honduras following the June 2009 ouster of Manuel Zelaya, which was also portrayed by those who took over as a legal, constitutional transition, even as it was denounced elsewhere. Honduras’ interim president was isolated by many Latin American governments, and his elected successor, Porfirio Lobo, only won the good graces of some in 2011 after Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez brokered a reconciliation deal with Zelaya. Lugo resigned as a Roman Catholic bishop to run for president in 2008 against the wishes of Pope Benedict XVI, who grudgingly accepted the resignation when it became clear Lugo would not be dissuaded. On Saturday, the Vatican’s envoy to Paraguay stopped short of recognizing the new government but expressed satisfaction there has been little unrest other than some confrontations between Lugo supporters and police during the Senate trial. German Ambassador Claude Robert Ellner visited the presidential palace and said his country “will continue as normal with all cooperation agreements with Paraguay. We see the process of change happening within the laws and the constitution, because no parliament makes a coup d’etat.” The U.S. State Department urged “all Paraguayans to act peacefully, with calm and responsibility, in the spirit of Paraguay’s democratic principles.” — AP

Partial roof collapse at Canada mall, evacuation

ONTARIO: A woman checks out the damage after a roof collapsed at the Algo Centre Mall in Elliot Lake, Ontario Saturday. The partial collapse prompted a local state of emergency and a search for anyone who might have been injured in the cave-in. —AP

ONTARIO: A number of people are missing and 22 people suffered minor injuries after a roof partially collapsed at a busy shopping mall in Canada, police said yesterday. A portion of the roof that serves as a parking area crumbled down onto the food court on Saturday afternoon, exposing metal and concrete supports at Algo Centre Mall in the northern Ontario city of Elliott Lake. The collapsed prompted an evacuation of the mall. Ontario Provincial Police said yesterday no one suffered serious injuries, but a number of people remain unaccounted for. Police said the names of those missing continue to be crossed off the list as members of the community account for their loved ones. A Heavy Urban Search and Rescue team from Toronto has been sent to Elliot Lake to help. The unit confirmed that at least one person was trapped in the collapse. Emergency officials quickly cleared out

the mall and closed surrounding roads after the collapse triggered a gas leak. Mayor Rick Hamilton declared a state of emergency soon after the collapse. Joe Drazil, a Zellers store employee, said several cars appeared to have fallen through the gaping hole near some escalators. “You can see the roof with the cars hanging inside,” he said. “Everybody was cleared from the whole mall. After that, there was numerous police and emergency vehicles coming from all over.” The two-level mall in this northern Ontario community is approximately 200,000 square feet (18,580 sq. meters). It houses a grocery store, restaurants, a number of retail outlets, a hotel, and the constituency office for a member of the provincial parliament. Calls to the management office at the mall were not immediately returned. Calls to the Algo Inn hotel attached to the mall were not answered.— AP

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


Pakistan’s gun-slinging chief justice faces backlash Fragile power balance threatened

PAG-ASA: In this Friday, June 15, 2012 photo released by the Office of Kalayaan Municipality Mayor Eugenio Bito-onon, residents and workers place a sign beside a Philippine flag at the newly opened Pag-asa elementary school on a disputed South China Sea island. Philippine officials have opened the school on a South China sea island. —AP

Philippines officials opens school on disputed island MANILA: Philippine officials have opened a small k indergar ten on a South China Sea island that is also claimed by five other governments. Mayor Eugenio Bito-onon said yesterday that the school was opened June 15 without fanfare to help a poor Filipino community on the island in the Spratly archipelago and not antagonize rival claimants. Five students were welcomed by their teacher in a classroom filled with crayons, pencils, coloring books and a blackboard, Bito-onon said. A Philippine flag fluttered in the breeze in the schoolyard on the 37hectare (91-acre) island, which the Philippines calls Pag-asa - or “hope” in Tagalog. “We’re trying to come up with as normal a community as possible and this is one important step,” Bito-onon said by telephone. “The kids were very excited. They grabbed their new schoolbags and prodded their parents to bring them to class early.” He said older children could also be accommodated in the school if he can get more government funding. Fifteen children

from the island currently attend elementary school on the mainland and stay with relatives there, he said. Filipino troops guard Pag-asa, the largest of nine islands, sandbars and reefs held by the Philippines under a municipality led by Bito- onon. The Philippine government established the far-flung municipality in 1978 to reinforce its claim to the Spratly archipelago. More than a dozen families have been encouraged by the government to live on the tadpole shaped island 480 kilometers (300 miles) off southwestern Palawan province by offering them free food, shelter, electricity, water and now, education. China, Taiwan, Brunei, Malaysia and Vietnam also claim the mostly barren Spratlys, which are believed to be rich in oil and gas and are near one of the world’s busiest sea lanes.. A nonbinding 2002 accord discourages aggressive acts that could spark fighting. Bitoonon said opening a k indergar ten could not be seen in anyway as having violated that pact. — AP

Australia calls for refugee deal after boat tragedy SYDNEY: Australia’s government yesterday renewed its call for a refugee swap deal with Malaysia after an asylum seeker boat sank off remote Christmas Island leaving up to around 90 people dead or unaccounted for. Canberra clinched a deal last year to send 800 boatpeople to Malaysia in exchange for 4,000 of that country’s registered refugees in a bid to deter people-smugglers from the dangerous maritime voyage Down Under. But Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s fragile coalition government was unable to pass the required legislation through parliament without the support of the opposition and asylum-seekers have continued to risk the voyage, mostly via Indonesia. “Without the Malaysia solution you’ve got a cobbled together Indonesian solution that is wholly unsatisfactory, it’s not protecting the borders, it’s not saving lives,” Foreign Minister Bob Carr told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Carr’s comments came after Australia suspended the search for more survivors from a people-smuggling boat which capsized in the Indian Ocean between Indonesia and Christmas Island three days ago. Rescuers reached 110 people in the hours after the boat sank some 109 nautical miles (202 kilometres) south of the Sunda Strait in Indonesia on Thursday but despite an extensive search, no survivors have been recovered since. While 17 bodies have been found, an

exact death toll may never be known because there were no firm figures on how many had been on board the ship. Customs officials believe there were about 200 people on board when the boat went down, bringing the total dead and unaccounted for to around 90. “I think it really underscores why people should not set off on this incredibly dangerous passage,” Attorney-General Nicola Roxon said as she urged opposition leader Tony Abbott to negotiate a compromise on the Malaysia deal. “I don’t think we can keep seeing these sorts of human tragedies occurring.” Abbott, who favours offshore processing of boatpeople on the tiny Pacific island state of Nauru, poured cold water on any kind of compromise. “ The Malaysian people-swap is not offshore processing, it’s offshore dumping,” he told journalists in Melbourne. “What’s needed here is not compromise for compromise’s sake but policies that work.” The sunken boat is believed to have originated in Sri Lanka and to have been carrying male mostly Afghan asylumseekers. Authorities said nine of the survivors were under the age of 18, including a 13-year-old boy. Authorities warn of the dangerous journey asylum-seekers face when they pay people-smugglers to bring them to Australia, often on overcrowded, wooden boats. The latest accident is the worst since 2001, when a boat known as the SIEV X sank, killing 353 of the more than 400 people on board.— AFP

ISLAMABAD: To his admirers, Pakistan’s Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry is a hero whose relentless pursuit of a money-laundering case against the president is teaching a generation of the country’s leaders a long-overdue lesson in respect for the law. To his critics, he is a runaway judge in the grip of a messiah complex whose turbo-charged brand of activism threatens to upend the power balance underpinning Pakistan’s precarious embrace of democracy. Last week, Chaudhry made his boldest move yet by disqualifying prime minister Yusuf Raza Gilani as punishment for his repeated refusal to obey court orders to reactivate a corruption case against President Asif Ali Zardari. Gilani’s downfall marked a watershed in a long-running showdown between the judiciary and the government that has laid bare the institutional tensions plaguing a country that has test fired ballistic nuclear missiles, but has yet to agree on how it should be run. “In practical terms, democracy is finished because the balance of power between the parliament, the executive and the judiciary has been ruined,” said a senior member of Zardari’s ruling Pakistan People’s Party (PPP). The military, which has ruled Pakistan for about half of its 65 years as an independent nation, has also not hidden its disdain of Zardari’s government, but has made it clear it does not wish to seize power. And it has its own problems with Chaudhry’s activism. The drama has been spiced by allegations of bribe-taking brought against Chaudhry’s son by a billionaire property developer, who has himself been accused of land-grabbing and fraud. The controversy briefly put the stern-faced judge on the defensive before he regained the initiative by disqualifying Gilani. The next chapter in the saga could start as early as Wednesday, when the Supreme Court holds its latest hearing in more than two years of legal wrangling aimed at forcing the government to re-open proceedings against Zardari. Pakistan’s political class is now transfixed by the question of whether Chaudhry will opt to pause in the wake of his victory over Gilani, or press home his advantage by demanding that Raja Pervez Ashraf, the new prime minister, re-activate the case. Zardari, a consummate political survivor, has already sacrificed Gilani in his determination to ensure the money-laundering case, which falls under Swiss jurisdiction and dates back the 1990s, remains closed. While many Pakistanis are happy to see his unpopular government on the ropes, the pugnacious chief justice is facing a growing backlash from those who fear his courtroom victories are being bought at the price of Pakistan’s stability. “We all have a problem with corruption, we all want these guys taken to task,” said Mehreen Zahra-Malik, a columnist with The

News. “But I don’t think it should be at the expense of the entire house falling apart.” GRIDLOCK Opposition parties have exploited the crisis to pile pressure on Zardari, raising the risk that the government might be forced to call general elections before its term expires in March. Whatever the president may decide, the stage is set for a new bout of institutional gridlock at a time when Pakistani needs agile leadership to face a host of challenges, from a chronic power crisis to Islamist militancy and tense relations with Washington. The source

GARHI KHUDA BAKHISH: Pakistan’s new Prime Minister, Raja Pervez Ashraf (C), offers prayers along with party leaders over the grave of slain former Pakistani premier Benazir Bhutto at the Bhutto family mausoleum in Garhi Khuda Bakhsh yesterday. —AFP of Chaudhry’s zeal is to be found in one of the more turbulent episodes in Pakistan’s recent history, according to lawyers and commentators who have tracked his ascent. Appointed in 2005, Chaudhry became embroiled in a confrontation with Pervez Musharraf, then Pakistan’s military leader, who removed him from office after he opposed plans to extend the general’s term in office. Huge crowds poured onto the streets to support Chaudhry’s stand against the generals. Zardari’s government, which took power in 2008, was forced to re-instate him the following year after an outpouring of street protests by lawyers. The heady victory seems to have shaped the judge’s self-image as a champion sent to right the wrongs inflicted on ordinary Pakistanis by a self-serving elite and an overprivileged military. He has since used his powers to investigate everything from petrol and sugar prices to cases of people whose rela-

Philippines: Jordanian journalist held captive MANILA: A Jordanian journalist and two Filipinos hired to help him with reporting are being held captive on an island in the southern Philippines by a one-armed leader of the Islamist militant group Abu Sayyaf, the interior secretary said yesterday. Jesse Robredo said that Baker Atyani, an Islamabad-based journalist for Middle East broadcast network Al-Arabiya, and two colleagues, are being held by militant Radullan Saheron on Jolo island. “They are now being held against their will,” Robredo told reporters in a text message. “There was no mention of ransom, but one of the Filipino captives called his wife and asked the latter to contact his company.” The two Filipinos, Rolando Letrero and Ramelito Vela, work for a Manila-based media production house and were hired by Atyani. Al-Arabiya said it has lost contact with Atyani. Robredo said they presumed that the captive crew was asking something from his employers, “but, we cannot say outrightly if its ransom. We are keeping our lines open for

communication.” Saheron is one of two remaining Philippines Islamist militant leaders on the US State Department’s terrorist watch list. The other is Isnilon Hapilon. Washington has put up to $5 million bounty on their capture dead or alive. The Philippines initially denied Atyani was a hostage, even though the Jordanian foreign ministry issued a statement last week saying he was a captive in the southern Philippines. Atyani arrived on June 11 at the island stronghold of Abu Sayyaf, notorious for kidnap-for-ransom and for beheading captives. The militants are now holding two Chinese, an Australian, two Europeans and a Japanese as captives on Jolo and nearby Basilan islands. The next day, Atyani and his crew were seen boarding a mini-bus to the island’s interior, seeking an interview with Yasser Igasan, an Islamist militant leader with connections to al Qaeda and Southeast Asian militant network Jemaah Islamiya. — Reuters

China earthquake kills at least 2, injures 100

HELMAND: An Afghan labourer works in a shop in Garmser, Helmand Province yesterday. The 130,000 NATO troops are due to leave Afghanistan by the end of 2014 and there are fears that their exit will lead to a reduction in rights and freedoms in the war-torn country. —AFP

BEIJING: An earthquake yesterday hit a mountainous area of southwest China, killing at least two people and injuring around 100, the official Xinhua news agency said. The US Geological Survey (USGS) said the earthquake had a magnitude of 5.5 and struck the border between the provinces of Sichuan and Yunnan just before 4:00 pm (0800 GMT), at a shallow depth of only 9.3 kilometres (5.8 miles). The Chinese government put the magnitude of the quake at 5.7. It was followed two minutes later by an af tershock of 3.3, the China Earthquake Network Centre said. The quake toppled houses and cut off communications with parts of Ninglang county in Yunnan, Xinhua said, adding that casualties were also reported in Sichuan’s Yanyuan county. Yunnan provincial authorities had

tives say they have been abducted by Pakistan’s intelligence services. The judge’s eagerness to rewrite the rules of Pakistan’s power game have won him support among those who see the judiciary as the only realistic hope of holding their leaders to account. Zardari’s choice of Ashraf as prime minister may only reinforce Pakistanis’ sense of despair in their government. As a former power minister, many Pakistanis hold Ashraf partly responsible for the chronic electricity shortages that triggered a fresh bout of violent protests last week. But Chaudhry, too, has got his fair share of criticism. Some say the decision to disquali-

sent relief supplies to Ninglang, where the quake was strongly felt, including 300 tents, it said. The province had also sent a team to the area. An official in Lijiang city, which administers Ninglang, told AFP it was too early to have detailed estimates of casualties and damage. Separately, a Yanyuan county government official was quoted by Xinhua as saying that “many” houses in rural areas had collapsed, but he gave no figure. “I felt it, but I don’t know about casualties,” another official of the Yanyuan civil affairs bureau told AFP, adding that the government was trying to calculate the casualties. The area is inhabited by the Yi ethnic minority, Xinhua said. China estimates there are around 7.8 million Yi people living in four provinces, including Yunnan and Sichuan, many in mountainous areas. —AFP

fy Gilani smacks of a grudge match cheered on by his allies in Pakistan’s boisterous media. Legal experts have questioned whether Chaudhry may have exceeded his powers by ousting the prime minister, arguing that there were other options available to resolve the stand-off with Zardari’s government. “It’s my impression that the judgments are highly politicised,” said Asma Jahangir, a respected human rights lawyer. “The populist approach of the chief justice will destabilise the democratic process.” The ruling PPP believes Chaudhry is deliberately fast-tracking corruption proceedings against its members, while leaving cases against opposition politicians to gather dust. The media frenzy triggered by Gilani’s ouster also eclipsed a subplot that had, days earlier, put Chaudhry in the spotlight over allegations that his son had accepted huge bribes from Malik Riaz, a business magnate. — Reuters


in brief

4-day India well rescue fails as girl found dead NEW DELHI: A four-day rescue mission to save a young girl who had fallen down a dry well in India ended unsuccessfully yesterday when her body was brought out by emergency services. The efforts to save five-year-old Mahi Upadhyay were televised live by national news channels, with people across the country performing religious rituals and offering prayers for her survival. The girl fell down the well on June 20 while playing with her friends in a village in Harayana state, about 50 kilometres (30 miles) southwest of New Delhi. Hundreds of soldiers, engineers and medical experts were involved in the attempt to rescue her, using heavy machinery to dig a parallel tunnel to reach her as well as pumping oxygen into the well to try to keep her alive. Her body was carried out yesterday wrapped in a blanket and taken to a nearby hospital where doctors declared her dead. “Mahi was stuck at a level of 60 feet (20 metres). The diameter of the well was very narrow, nothing could be sent inside to save her,” senior police officer Anil Rao told reporters at the scene. Six divers saved after going missing in Malaysia KUALA LUMPUR: Six scuba divers who went missing off a Malaysian resort island were rescued when they were spotted by a passing tugboat yesterday after spending a night in the sea, a maritime official said. The boat spotted the divers, a Singaporean, a Chinese and four Malaysians, off Tioman island on Malaysia’s east coast, said Syed Mohamad Fuzi Syed Hasan, an official with the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency. The Malaysian boat, which was on its way to Indonesia, later informed authorities, who picked up the divers, he said. Another official had said earlier the boat was Indonesian. “Luckily all are safe,” Syed Mohamad Fuzi told AFP, adding that they were uninjured and back on Tioman island. The six, who were aged between 25 and 33 and included two women, were reported missing after going diving off the island Saturday. A seventh member of the group, who lost the rest underwater, raised the alarm. Syed Mohamad Fuzi said that due to a misunderstanding, the alarm was raised when the six were still diving. When they resurfaced, the boat was gone as it went to get help, and they drifted away with the current. Syed Mohamad Fuzi said the divers were experienced, had inflatable jackets and huddled together throughout the night so no one would become separated from the group. Malaysia’s east coast islands, famed for their corals and marine life, are a popular dive destination and accidents are rare.

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


CAIRO: Egyptians celebrate the victory of Mohamed Morsi in the presidential election in Tahrir Square yesterday. — AP

Historic win for Morsi Continued from Page 1 The 60-year-old engineer also vowed to honour international treaties. “We will preserve all international treaties and charters ... we come in peace,” Morsi said. Egypt was the first Arab country to sign a peace treaty with Israel, in 1979. Kuwait’s Amir HH Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah congratulated Morsi on the “confidence the brotherly people of Egypt had granted him by electing him as president,” the official KUNA news agency reported. The Amir wished the newly elected Islamist leader “good luck in fulfilling the aspirations of Egyptians in achieving further prosperity and for security and stability to prevail” in the country and for Egypt to continue its regional and international roles serving Arab and Islamic interests. The election comes after 18 months of a tumultuous military-led transition from Mubarak’s rule, marked by political upheaval and bloodshed. “The winner of the election for Egyptian president on June 16-17 is Mohamed Morsi Eissa Al-Ayat,” said the head of the electoral commission, Faruq Sultan earlier. The announcement saw hundreds of thousands of Morsi supporters erupt in celebration in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, waving flags and posters of the Islamist leader, who was jailed during the uprising that overthrew Mubarak early last year. “God is greatest” and “down with military rule” they chanted, as fireworks went off over the square. Across Cairo, cars sounded their horns and chants of “Morsi, Morsi” were heard. Losing candidate Shafiq, who was widely perceived as the military’s candidate, joined the country’s military ruler Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi in congratulating Morsi. “General Ahmed Shafiq sent a message to Mohamed Morsi congratulating him on his victory,” the official MENA news agency reported. Earlier state television said Tantawi had congratulated Morsi. Morsi won with 13,230,131 votes against Shafiq’s 12,347,380, Sultan said. The election, in which more than 50 million voters were eligible to cast their ballot, saw a 51.8 percent turnout. Morsi resigned from his posts in the Muslim Brotherhood and its Freedom and Justice Party, which he headed, after he was declared the winner, the Brotherhood announced. And the interim head of the Coptic Church, many of whose faithful have feared the rise of Islamists, also congratulated Morsi. Shafiq supporters who had gathered to hear the result with his campaign team in the suburbs of Cairo were devastated by the result. Some women screamed and others cried as several men held their heads between their hands in despair. “It’s a very sad day for Egypt. I don’t think Morsi is the winner. I’m very sad that Egypt will be represented by this man and this group,” Shafiq supporter Maged told AFP. “This is an historic moment for Egypt,” said British Foreign Secretary William Hague. “I welcome President Morsi’s statement that he intends to form an inclusive government that governs on behalf of all the Egyptian people.” In his congratulations, French President Francois Hollande said: “It is key today that the transition which started in February 2011 continues, so that a democratic and pluralist political system establishes itself in Egypt, guaranteeing civil liberties and political freedom to all citizens.” In Israel, at war with the Brotherhood’s Palestinian offshoot Hamas, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he “respected” the democratic outcome in Egypt and expected to continue cooperation under the two states’ peace treaty. In Hamas-run Gaza, where Palestinians

hope Morsi may end Cairo’s cooperation with an Israeli blockade, celebratory gunfire rattled across the crowded coastal territory. Iran, which is at odds with most Arab states, welcomed what it called an “Islamic awakening” in Egypt. Reformist Egyptian politician Mohamed ElBaradei, a former UN diplomat, tweeted: “It is time for us to all work together as Egyptians in a framework of national consensus.” A senior Western diplomat in Cairo said: “This is a truly historic moment for Egypt - a triumph over the politics of fear and prejudice. Egypt has a civilian, democratically elected president for the first time in its history. The Muslim Brotherhood are far from a perfect organisation, but Morsi’s election represents a genuine result for the revolution.” He said he did not expect the movement to push its complaints so far as to provoke the military council to react and take from the presidency those powers it still has. “The Muslim Brotherhood will take what they’ve got - a prize unimaginable to them 18 months ago,” the diplomat said. “An imperfect presidency is way better than none at all. “It’s part of the new and delicate act of political compromise, part of Egypt’s new cohabitation.” Hamdeen Sabahy, the secular leftist who finished a close third behind Shafik in the first round, called on Morsi to “swiftly form a national presidential administration and a government that expresses national reconciliation and represents all currents and the diversity of Egyptian society powers”. The capital was tense before the announcement, with the city’s notoriously busy streets deserted and shops and schools closed. Extra troops and police were deployed as military helicopters flew overhead. The road to parliament was closed to traffic, and security was tightened around vital establishments as Egyptians waited nervously for the result. The election has polarised the nation, dividing those who feared a return to the old regime under Shafiq from others who wanted to keep religion out of politics and who fear the Brotherhood would stifle personal freedoms. Shafiq ran on a strong law-and-order platform, pledging to restore security and stability. He is himself a retired general, but as a Mubarak-era minister he is reviled by the activists who spearheaded the 2011 revolt. Presidentelect Morsi was the Islamists’ fallback representative after their deputy leader Khairat El-Shater was disqualified. In campaigning he sought to allay the fears of secular groups and the sizeable Coptic Christian minority by promising a diverse and inclusive political system. Both Morsi and Shafiq had claimed victory in the election for a successor to Mubarak, and tensions heightened after the electoral commission delayed announcing the official outcome. The delay in announcing the result of the June 16-17 run-off, initially scheduled for Thursday, had raised suspicions that the outcome of the election was being negotiated rather than counted. On Friday, the SCAF warned it would deal “with utmost firmness and strength” with any attempts to harm public interests. The Brotherhood warned against tampering with the election results, but also said it had no intention of instigating violence. It has rejected a constitutional declaration by the military that strips away any gains made by the Islamist group since the popular uprising which forced Mubarak to stand down in February last year. The document dissolves the Islamist-led parliament and gives the army a broad say in government policy and control over the new constitution. It was adopted just days after a justice ministry decree granted the army powers of arrest. — Agencies

Why not give the Brotherhood a chance Continued from Page 1 his opposition got around 12 million votes. In simple math, half of Egypt’s population did not even bother to cast a ballot. Of course, Morsi belongs to the Muslim Brotherhood, so it is not yet clear what will his intentions be. Is he going to take in consideration Egypt above all or is he going to be stuck with Brotherhood rules? Bear in mind that Ahmad Shafiq also got a good number of those who voted. In my opinion, Shafiq was unlucky

because he was linked to Mubarak’s regime. This surely worked against him. Of course, this is the first time in the history of Egypt’s political life and many are skeptical of the Muslim Brotherhood. Many have expressed their fear and consider this choice to be disastrous. Many are worried about the social freedoms that Egypt enjoys today. Will Morsi follow in the footsteps of Mubarak regarding Israel’s treaty? What will be Egypt’s relations with the United States? How about his

domestic politics especially when it comes to the secular parties in Egypt. What will be his relations with the Copts who are fearing Muslim rule and who supported Shafiq. Let’s wait for Morsi to address the nation and see and hear him in a few hours. After all, he was elected by the people. Why not give the Brotherhood a chance. I have strong belief that after the Arab Spring, nobody can mess with Egyptian people, neither Morsi nor the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces or anyone else.

Pakistan’s Dr Afridi, from CIA asset to solitary cell PESHAWAR: There can be few jail cells in Pakistan as lonely as the one occupied by Shakil Afridi, the doctor who helped the CIA hunt down Osama bin Laden. He is kept in solitary confinement to protect him from hundreds of convicted militants eager to avenge their hero’s death. He may not be safe even from the guards - only two trusted officials are allowed to see him. Beyond the walls, Afridi is as much a prisoner of Pakistan’s growing resentment of the United States as he is a victim of his own dalliance with highstakes espionage. No wonder then that he finds solace in the story of Younus in the Quran, almost identical to that of Jonah in the Old Testament, a prophet whose faith in God delivers him from the belly of a whale. “My brother was confident that he will be released very soon. He said: ‘I’m innocent, I’ve done nothing wrong,’” Afridi’s brother Jamil told Reuters in a recent interview after visiting the jail in the northwestern city of Peshawar. “There is a prayer said by one of the famous prophets, when he was eaten by a fish,” Jamil added. “Dr Shakil is reciting that same prayer for his safety.” The history of US spycraft has seen few faster reversals of fortune than Afridi’s journey from a participant in one of the most dramatic covert operations of modern times to isolation in the forbidding confines of the colonialera Peshawar Central Jail, with redbrick walls and watch towers. A smalltime country physician long dogged by allegations of medical malpractice, Afridi, now 48, was recruited by the CIA some years ago, according to several US and Pakistani officials. One Pakistani intelligence source said he was talentspotted while working in a refugee camp on the outskirts of Peshawar in 2009 and used to gather intelligence on militants in the border area. Later, he was asked to scout bin Laden’s compound in the garrison town of Abbottabad, near the capital Islamabad, under the cloak of an antihepatitis campaign. US officials say Afridi provided important information on activity at the compound. Bin Laden was killed in a US Navy SEAL raid in Abbottabad in May last year that was conducted without informing Pakistani authorities. Three weeks later, Afridi was picked up, interrogated for months and, in May this year, sentenced to 33 years in jail. When he was led to a warder’s office for the meeting with his brother on June 4, Afridi wore no shackles or handcuffs and was clad in the shalwarkameez, the loose-fitting trousers and flowing shirt popular in Pakistan. Jamil

Afridi noticed he had gained weight perhaps because conditions had improved since his transfer to the jail from detention centres used by intelligence agencies. Jamil, a village schoolteacher, says he himself has been forced to adopt a rudimentary disguise, dark glasses and a cap, to ward off unwanted attention since appearing on TV to defend his younger sibling. “My brother has become a victim of the US game,” said Jamil, who spends much of his day worried that passersby are actually security agents tailing him. He used the term “angels” for the agents, as many Pakistanis do because they are believed to be everywhere but remain invisible. “If my brother had really played a role for America, I think the Americans should have kept it secret.” Afridi meanwhile has become a new irritant in the complex ties between Washington and Islamabad, that have been deteriorating over the past 18 months despite Pakistan’s pivotal role to US interests in Afghanistan, counter-terrorism and nuclear security. Afridi’s incarceration fueled suspicions in the Obama administration t hat elements in Pakistan secretly sympathised with the militants the United States is trying to catch. Pakistan’s failure to prosecute a single suspect accused of helping facilitate Bin Laden’s stay near a military academy in Abbottabad has only sharpened the rancour. The day after Afridi was sentenced, the Senate expressed its anger by voting to dock Islamabad $33 million in aid - $1 million for every year of the term. To Pakistan’s powerful military, which was enraged by the bin Laden raid, Afridi is a traitor. Critics in the tribal areas on the Afghan border say he deserves to be punished, not for helping the CIA but for his lack of scruples as a doctor. Elders and former officials say he made money by performing unnecessary operations on unsuspecting villagers and that he was accused of sexual harassment by nurses. Jamil Afridi dismisses the allegations as baseless. Some former colleagues have described Afridi as a diligent professional and US officials have also leapt to his defence. “Available information showed Afridi was a respected member of the Pakistani health care community,” said a senior US official in Washington. “We are aware of efforts, put in place since Dr Afridi’s arrest, to denigrate his character.” US officials say they offered to relocate Afridi and his family after the bin Laden raid, but that the doctor declined. There was no way to independently confirm that account.

Jamil Afridi said he did not know whether his brother had received such an offer, but he believed Afridi would have been reluctant to take his two sons and a daughter out of Pakistan, where he had a stable job and his wife was working as the principal of a government college. “He had a good future,” Jamil Afridi said. “Why would he move to the US to live there?” Naseem Bibi, a nurse who worked on his immunisation drive in Abbottabad, also defended Afridi. “He was very nice to all the people in the team and did his job very diligently,” she said. Shakil Afridi was born in a modest home in a village in southern Punjab, a vast flatland of wheat, rice and cotton fields that is Pakistan’s breadbasket. Afridi’s father had retired to Punjab after serving as a sergeant in the Frontier Corps, a paramilitary unit deployed to protect Pakistan’s border with Afghanistan. The family hailed from the Afridi tribe, part of the fiercely independent Pashtun community that straddles the frontier. His grandfather, Mir Dast, had won the Victoria Cross, Britain’s highest military award, in 1915 for valour at Ypres, Belgium, the site of some of the most intense fighting in World War 1. Although the family was by no means wealthy, Jamil Afridi said his parents were the first in their village to obtain a refrigerator when electricity arrived there in the early 1960s. A dedicated student, Shakil Afridi qualified as a doctor in Peshawar before taking a series of government jobs as a health officer in the rugged land of monumental landscapes and scattered villages hugging the Afghan border. For years, Afridi was trailed by accusations that he had sought to make easy money by convincing patients to go under his scalpel for unnecessary procedures at his private clinic. Mohammad Yousaf, an elder from Khyber, said his sister had suffered months of complications and remained bed-ridden after Afridi performed surgery to treat her fever. “We are illiterate villagers and thought whatever the doctor advised would be good,” Yousaf said. “Dr Shakil used to advise surgery to every patient.” Allegations of medical malpractice are not unusual in Pakistan’s tribal areas, and it is impossible to verify the validity of the claims. What is certain is that Afridi rankled his superiors. “Keeping in view his extreme lust for money, I am ashamed to even call him a doctor. He is a corrupt, unreliable and low category officer,” wrote the author of a provincial health department report on his performance in March 2002. — Reuters

Opposition rejects court ruling as ‘null... Continued from Page 1 The new position by the Kuwaiti opposition is likely to escalate political tension in the country, which rose to new heights following the unprecedented court ruling. The ruling was based on the grounds that two Amiri decrees issued to dissolve the previous Assembly and to invite Kuwaiti voters to elect a new Assembly last year “were found to be illegal” and accordingly, the court cancelled the election process, scrapping the Assembly elected on Feb 2 and reinstated the previ-

ous Assembly. Saadoun and several former MPs from the opposition meanwhile denied rumours that the opposition MPs will go to the Assembly and resume their duties in a normal way. Speaker of the 2009 Assembly Jassem Al-Khorafi meanwhile returned from abroad and immediately declared that his return came after learning of the constitutional court ruling in order to take the necessary constitutional procedures after the ruling. He said that he is due to meet HH the Amir today to discuss the developments but insisted that an expected

decision to dissolve the previous Assembly again is the authority of the Amir. Khorafi called on all sides to respect the constitutional court ruling in order to achieve political stability in the country. He said he will discuss with the concerned people a number of issues regarding inviting the 2009 MPs to hold a session and who is going to attend and those boycotting. He said he will also discuss if the government will attend and if it is constitutional and other issues related to the Assembly.


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012



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Fresh new ideas needed in Iran nuke deadlock By Simon Sturdee orld powers negotiating with a defiant Iran over its nuclear program need to risk more and get more “creative” if they want to break a deadlock that threatens tipping into military conflict, analysts say. After three high-level meetings in three months, the latest in Moscow last week, Iran and the P5+1 group (the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China), appear no closer to finding a way out of their almost decade-long confrontation. Parallel efforts between Iran and the UN nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency, are in an even worse state, with no sign of a deal on enhanced cooperation that IAEA chief Yukiya Amano said was all but sealed when he visited Tehran a month ago. The P5+1 want Iran to stop the most sensitive area of its nuclear work - the enrichment of uranium to 20 percent purity - as well as to shut its near bomb-proof underground facility in Fordo, and to ship out its existing stockpiles of higher-enriched fissile material. Iran, which denies accusations it wants or has worked on developing nuclear weapons, is steadfastly refusing to comply without guarantees of sanctions relief and an unlikely P5+1 declaration that Tehran has a “right” to enrich uranium. Neither side is expected to budge much in their positions. EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, the P5+1 chief negotiator, said after the last round of “tough” talks in Moscow that, although “critical issues” had begun to be tackled, “significant gaps” separated the two sides. Iran and the world powers managed to keep the diplomatic track alive by agreeing to more discussions - but at a lower level, between experts, to be held July 3 in Istanbul. More senior-ranking discussions will only follow if those experts manage to drag the talks out of the impasse by finding some elusive bridging formula that escaped their superiors in Istanbul, Baghdad and Moscow. “We are not going to find a way out of this stalemate without some creative thinking, and it is hard to do creative thinking in formal set-piece meetings,” said Mark Fitzpatrick from the International Institute for Strategic Studies think-tank. One way would be the opening up between the two key players, the United States and Iran, of an informal avenue of communication for “brainstorming”, an approach that produced results with North Korea, former US state department official Fitzpatrick told AFP. With Iran, this avenue might, for example, be used for finding mutually acceptable ways of easing sanctions, or a solution to one of the thorniest issues: that of Iran’s demand that its “right” to enrich be accepted. Multiple UN Security Council resolutions have called on Iran to suspend all enrichment, and Israel for one has made it clear that any watering down of this demand is a red line. US President Barack Obama is also not about to make a promise that will lay him open to accusations from his Republican challenger in November elections, Mitt Romney, of being soft on Iran. But hammering out some sort of statement acceptable to both sides, with substantial caveats, “is the kind of thing that needs to be explored informally,” Fitzpatrick said. Given that the P5+1 includes the very same five permanent members of the UN Security Council, a “more imaginative, less rigid handling” of its resolutions would be “helpful”, said Rouzbeh Parsi from the EU Institute for Security Studies (ISS). Moreover, an avenue of communication between Washington and Tehran might also encompass other issues of mutual interest -Afghanistan, for example - and progress here might create the goodwill needed to progress on the nuclear file. Bilateral talks “would be very helpful because it could also enable the conversation to be enlarged,” said Trita Parsi, National Iranian American Council president and author of the book on US-Iran diplomacy “A Single Role of the Dice”. How likely such a channel of communication is highly uncertain however, given mistrust built up between the two foes over more than three decades of enmity. The US has made clear, albeit quietly, that it is ready for a bilateral meeting, but so far it has been spurned by Iran, whose regime hardliners would certainly slam such an encounter. With the IAEA meanwhile, the watchdog’s former deputy director general Pierre Goldschmidt proposed in May Iran be given a “grace period” in which to come clean about any past violations of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT) or undeclared facilities or material without fear of punishment. — AFP


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Putin seeks Mideast clout and to soothe Arabs By Steve Gutterman rab ambassadors delivered a clear message to Russia’s special Middle East representative this month as Syria’s envoy watched in silent discomfort: You are on the wrong side of history. Russia’s envoy, Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov, differed during the radio discussion with the Moscow-based ambassadors. He and President Vladimir Putin say Russia is on a mission to stop the world making a historic error over Syria. Friday’s shooting down of a Turkish military aircraft by Syrian air defences may only widen the rift between the two schools of thought. Turkey has called a meeting of NATO allies on the incident and plans to approach the UN Security Council. By using its UN Security Council veto in the past to blunt efforts to force out President Bashar Al-Assad during 16 months of bloodshed, Russia has shown the United States and Europe that it will not let them decide the fate of other states. But the display of geopolitical muscle has come at a price for Putin and Russia, further damaging Moscow’s reputation in a region where upheaval and conflict have upset his efforts to revive his country’s clout since he came to power in 2000. “Russia finds itself in a very unpleasant situation: It has essentially put itself in opposition to the entire Arab world,” said Fyodor Lukyanov, editor of the journal Russia in Global Affairs. Back in the Kremlin and in charge of foreign policy again after four years as prime minister, Putin will try to mitigate the damage on a trip that will take him to the West Bank and Jordan tomorrow after a visit to Israel today. “Putin needs to show that Russia is not against the Arab quest for democracy,” said Georgy Mirsky, a Middle East expert at the Institute of the World Economy and International Relations in Moscow. “He wants to minimise the negative effects of the Arab Spring, to show that Russia is not on the side of dictators.” Russia lost billions of dollars in arms and infrastructure contracts in Libya because of the conflict that led to the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi, and is struggling to restore trade ties and contracts in several nations. Still more is at stake in Syria, which buys Russian arms and provides a deep water Mediterranean port for its navy. But Putin, who faces US and European criticism for his treatment of dissent in Russia after the biggest protests of his rule, is likely to juxtapose the


friendly message to Arabs with more warnings against Western interference abroad. Putin’s second visit to Israel sends at least an implicit message to US President Barack Obama, who has not visited the US ally in more than three years as president. “It’s clear there is ... in this visit a ‘nudge’ to the Americans, to tell them ‘we are playing here too’”, an Israeli official said. Russia drew a line in the sand over Syria after allowing NATO air strikes that helped Libyan rebels drive Gaddafi from power by abstaining from a U.N. Security Council resolution which Putin likened to “medieval calls for crusades”. Assad has helped Russia keep a foothold in the Middle East by buying billions of dollars worth of weapons and hosting a maintenance facility for the Russian navy, its only permanent warmwater port outside the former Soviet Union. But Russia’s stance on Syria - where Moscow says it does not back Assad but that only Syrians can decide his fate - is also driven by Putin’s opposition to Western efforts to promote political change abroad. “Putin’s purpose is simple: To show the West and a domestic audience that Russia has not been pushed out of the picture but still has a strong role to play in the Middle East, and that no serious problem can be solved without Russia,” Mirsky said. But on Syria, Putin may find it hard to convince Arab nations Russia is part of the solution rather than the problem. In February, Russia and China vetoed a Western-backed UN Security Council resolution that supported an Arab League call for Assad to cede power and condemned him for violence in which the United Nations says his forces have killed more than 10,000. Since then, Russia has backed UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan’s peace plan and says there is no alternative, hoping to avert military intervention and resisting pushes for sanctions. Moscow has brushed aside US and Arab calls to stop sending weapons to the Syrian government, saying it supplies only defensive arms. While Putin has hedged his bets by distancing himself from Assad and saying there is no special relationship between Moscow and Damascus, he is not prepared to trade a visible climbdown on Syria for kudos from Arab states. Putin’s visit this week is not likely to produce progress towards ending the crisis in Syria or the standoff over Iran’s nuclear program, let alone the conflict between

Israel and the Palestinians. “I don’t expect that in the talks on Iran or Syria he will stray even by a millimetre from the line we already know, though he may try to make it more userfriendly,” the Israeli official said. Along with the United States, China, Britain, France and Germany, Russia is part of a group of states negotiating with Iran to ensure it does not develop nuclear weapons, and hosted inconclusive talks with Tehran last week. Russia takes a softer tack than the Western nations, opposing any further sanctions against Iran and warning Israel not to attack its nuclear sites. Putin has repeatedly said Russia has no proof Tehran is seeking to develop nuclear weapons, but analysts say he is also motivated by a desire to counter US clout. “Some in Russia believe it would be better to have a nuclear Iran than a pro-American Iran - better to have Iran as a counterweight to American power and pressure,” Mirsky said. In 2005, Putin became the first Russian president to visit Israel, which was aligned against Moscow-backed Arab states in the Soviet era, and made stops in the West Bank and Egypt. This trip - which follows visits to Europe, China, three exSoviet republics and a G20 summit in Mexico where Putin met US President Barack Obama - also seems likely to be richer in symbol than substance. “He needs to be seen in the Middle East. If he declined to visit, it would mean Russia has given up in the Middle East and has been pushed out,” said Mirsky. Putin will stake a claim to deep roots for Russia in the region by visiting Bethlehem, which Christians revere as the birthplace of Jesus Christ, and opening a guesthouse for Russian pilgrims near the River Jordan, regarded as the place where Christ was baptised. In Israel, he is to attend the opening of a monument honouring “the Red Army victory over Nazi Germany”. Russia is predominantly Orthodox Christian and Putin has encouraged a revival of religious practice since he came to power a decade after the collapse of the officially atheist Soviet Union in 1991. Patriarch Kirill, a Putin ally who heads the Russian Orthodox Church, visited Orthodox communities in Syria and Lebanon last November and later called for international cooperation to protect Christian minorities in the Middle East. Putin may also use the visit to amplify his opposition to external political pressure such as calls for Assad’s ouster.— Reuters

Israel army ‘game’ leaves Palestinian dead By Selim Saheb Ettaba s the Shawakha brothers rushed to protect their home from intruders, they had no clue they were unwitting participants in an Israeli army exercise that would leave one of them dead. “It was March 27, 1:30 in the morning,” recalls Akram Shawakha, 36, who was on watch duty on the top floor of the modest family home on a hill east of the West Bank city of Ramallah. Their house is on the outskirts of the wealthy village of Rammun, where most residents have emigrated to America. “I saw two men dressed in ordinary clothes near the entrance,” said Akram, a cement factory worker who was taking the first shift on guard duty to keep an eye on the family’s 10 sheep and their car from wouldbe thieves. Clutching a stick, Akram went down to wake his brothers - 39-year-old Anwar and 28-year-old Rashad - then went outside as they got dressed and picked up a knife to protect themselves. Akram confronted the two strangers, addressing them in Arabic “which they spoke perfectly,” he recalls. “I asked them who they were. One of them said: ‘Don’t worry, we know everyone in Rammun.’ We insisted on seeing their identity papers, and they put their hands in their pockets and pulled out their guns, not to threaten us, but with the intention of shooting.” Gunfire erupted and a confused melee ensued. The three brothers suffered bullet wounds although they managed to throw blows of their own as they fought. “Everything happened in less than a minute,” Akram says. “Then Israeli soldiers in uniform arrived and we were ordered to stop. My brothers were lying on the ground, injured. I asked the soldiers for help.” The two “intruders” were quickly whisked away in a military vehicle as the


three brothers waited, lying on the ground. At one point, “a soldier fired a round at the ground, injuring Rashad further,” Akram says. Eventually the three brothers were taken to an Israeli hospital. Rashad died on April 2. The story was picked up by the Israeli media, which soon discovered that the two “intruders” were in fact soldiers participating in a training exercise by the “Dudevan” military unit, which specialises in infiltrating Palestinian areas disguised as Arabs. Shortly after the two surviving brothers were released from hospital, they filed a complaint through the Israeli rights group B’ Tselem. On April 24, nearly a month after the incident, the military prosecutor informed B’ Tselem that it had

opened an investigation. The military has repeatedly refused to comment on the investigation, saying only that it is ongoing. “It wasn’t until I was at the hospital that I understood the people we confronted were soldiers,” Anwar Shawakha told AFP, saying he had only realised what had happened when an army officer called “Adam” told him during his interrogation. “Their lives were never in danger. We just wanted to know their identity, but their identity was their guns,” he says. “ We thought they were thieves. At no point did they mention Israel, nor the army, nor did they order us to go back into the house, otherwise none of this would have happened,” he sighs. “Rammun is a quiet vil-

Akram, brother of Palestinian Rashad Shawakha, shows the scars of his wounds at his house in the West Bank village of Rammun near Ramallah on May 23, 2012. — AFP

lage.” Using Palestinian villages as a training ground for undercover Israeli troops is not uncommon. In 2007, the practice prompted Israeli NGO Yesh Din to complain to the military’s top legal adviser, warning the exercises could endanger both Israeli and Palestinian lives. Yehuda Shaul, founder of Breaking the Silence, a group of former Israeli soldiers critical of army practices in the occupied territories, says such exercises have increased in recent years. “As the West Bank becomes more and more secure, securitywise, there is more and more training on ‘live’ Palestinians,” he told AFP. Back during the violence of the second intifada (2000-2005), the security situation was too dangerous for troops to carry out such undercover work, but since then, the army has been taking advantage of the calm for training purposes. “Now training on Palestinians is not putting the troops in danger, so as the West Bank becomes more and more calm, we hear more and more of these stories,” he said. A newly trained unit doesn’t want “their first arrest operation to be carried out on a real sting, on a really wanted person,” he explains. “So you pick a quiet village in the area where you’re based, you open the map, choose a random house ... You go in the middle of the night, you surround the house, you grab a guy as if it’s a real arrest.” The argument is that training “has to be as close to the real thing” as possible, he said. “It is another form of what we call in the army ‘Making our presence felt’ if Palestinians get the feeling that the army is everywhere all the time, they will be afraid to attack,” Shaul told AFP. “When you control people under military occupation for so long, you’re starting to play games. Individual soldiers play games at checkpoints with people, and the big army plays games with villages.” — AFP

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

sp orts Spitz’s advice to Phelps

Parker in doubt for Olympics

Boonsak wins Singapore Open

LOS ANGELES: Mark Spitz’s advice to Michael Phelps ahead of the London Olympics would be that, when you have already won more gold medals at a single Games than any swimmer in history, less could turn out to be more. Phelps, 27 this month, beat Spitz’s 1972 record of seven gold medals four years ago at the Beijing Games and will compete in the US Olympic trials beginning on Monday in Omaha, Nebraska. He has signed up for seven individual events, which combined with the three relays he is likely to join at the London Games could potentially see him strive for a stunning 10 gold medals this summer. It remains to be seen exactly how many events he will swim in London, but Spitz said that - put in his place - he would want to “go out a winner’ rather than collecting silver and bronze medals. That would be by limiting his efforts to those events in which he is strongest and swim six in total including the relays. — Reuters

PARIS: French basketball star Tony Parker could miss next month’s London Olympics due to the eye injury he sustained in a bizarre nightclub brawl in New York, he said on his website. Parker, who plays for the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA, sustained the injury when he got caught in the cross-fire of a bottlethrowing brawl between friends of R&B singer Chris Brown and rapper Drake. He received glass fragments in his eye and later spoke about his fears of losing the sight in the eye all together, He has subsequently sued the owners of the W.i.P. (Work in Progress) club in the SoHo neighborhood of Manhattan for £20million dollars, holding them responsible for the injury by allowing the two groups to be in the club at the same time knowing there was a history of bad blood between the two. Parker was due to meet up with the highlyregarded French basketball team on Sunday, but will return to the United States on July 5 to seek the help of an eye specialist and talk with San Antonio officials. “I will be seeing a specialist in New York and hope to get clearance to take part in the Olympic Games,” he said. “The Spurs are very worried. Depending on the results, anything could happen including my withdrawl from the Games, “The final decision is not mine to take. It’s up to the doctor and San Antonio.” — AFP

SINGAPORE: Thai ace Boonsak Ponsana claimed his second Singapore Open men’s singles title yesterday after beating China’s Wang Zhengming in a hard-fought final. The 30-year-old, whose world ranking has fallen from fourth in November 2010 to 32nd, beat Wang 21-18, 21-19 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium, in a boost for the Thai ahead of the London Olympics. Boonsak made a sluggish start and trailed former World Junior champion Wang 10-5 early on but he came back to win 10 of the next 12 points and claim the opening game in 25 minutes. The second game was tight and Wang appeared to have the edge after taking a 19-18 lead. However, Boonsak fought back and secured the title when Wang smashed wide on match point. The Thai first won the Singapore Open in 2007. Boonsak will compete at the upcoming Olympics in London although a number of the world’s leading players opted to skip the Singapore Open as it falls outside the Games qualifying period. — AFP

Yankees cruise past Mets NEW YORK: Raul Ibanez tied the game with a three-run homer, pinch-hitter Eric Chavez came through with a go-ahead shot moments later and the New York Yankees rallied past the New York Mets 4-3 Saturday night to stop a three-game skid. Riding the long ball again, the Yankees won for the fourth time in five Subway Series matchups this season. The finale is quite an attraction, too, with R.A. Dickey coming off consecutive one-hitters when he faces Yankees ace CC Sabathia in a much-anticipated pitching duel Sunday night. Daniel Murphy, who hasn’t homered all season, nearly won this one for the Mets in the ninth inning. With a runner aboard, he hit a deep drive into the right-field corner that was caught just in front of the fence for the final out. Reds 6, Twins 0 At Cincinnati, Johnny Cueto remained unbeaten in June by pitching seven innings and driving in a pair of runs with a squeeze bunt and a bases-loaded groundout, leading Cincinnati over Minnesota. The Reds ended their season-high losing streak at four games. Cueto (9-3) allowed three hits and fanned a season-high nine while improving to 4-0 in four June starts. Two relievers finished a combined three-hitter. Brandon Phillips hit a two-run homer off left-hander Brian Duensing (1-3). Scott Rolen had two more hits and scored on Cueto’s squeeze bunt and groundout.

OAKLAND: (From left) San Francisco Giants’ Ryan Theriot, Pablo Sandoval, and Gregor Blanco celebrate the final out of an interleague baseball game against the Oakland Athletics. —AP

MLB results/standings Toronto 7, Miami 1; St. Louis 8, Kansas City 2; Colorado 11, Texas 7; Houston 8, Cleveland 1; Philadelphia 7, Tampa Bay 6; Pittsburgh 4, Detroit 1; Cincinnati 6, Minnesota 0; LA Dodgers 3, LA Angels 1; San Francisco 9, Oakland 8; Chicago White Sox 8, Milwaukee 6; Washington 3, Baltimore 1; Boston 8, Atlanta 4; NY Yankees 4, NY Mets 3; Seattle 5, San Diego 1; Arizona 10, Chicago Cubs 5. American League Eastern Division W L PCT NY Yankees 42 28 .600 Baltimore 40 31 .563 Tampa Bay 38 32 .543 Boston 37 34 .521 Toronto 37 34 .521

GB 2.5 4 5.5 5.5

Central Division Cleveland 37 33 .529 White Sox 37 34 .521 Detroit 34 37 .479 Kansas City 31 38 .449 Minnesota 28 42 .400

.5 3.5 5.5 9

Western Division Texas 44 28 .611 LA Angels 39 33 .542 5 Oakland 34 38 .472 10 Seattle 31 42 .425 13.5

National League Eastern Division Washington 41 28 .594 NY Mets 39 33 .542 Atlanta 38 33 .535 Philadelphia 34 38 .472 Miami 33 38 .465

3.5 4 8.5 9

Central Division Cincinnati 39 31 .557 Pittsburgh 38 32 .543 1 St. Louis 37 35 .514 3 Milwaukee 33 38 .465 6.5 Houston 29 42 .408 10.5 Chicago Cubs 24 47 .338 15.5 Western Division LA Dodgers 43 29 .597 San Francisco 40 32 .556 Arizona 36 35 .507 Colorado 27 43 .386 San Diego 25 47 .347

3 6.5 15 18

France crush Pumas TUCUMAN: France’s revamped backs had a field day with five tries including two from winger Yoann Huget in a crushing 49-10 victory over Argentina in the second test in Tucuman on Saturday. Flyhalf Frederic Michalak weighed in with 19 points from five conversions and three penalties, and flanker Alexandre Lapandry added a late sixth tr y as the French exacted sweet revenge for their narrow 23-20 defeat in the first test. Winger Benjamin Fall, Huget and scrumhalf Maxime Machenaud, winning his first cap, scored first half tries as France ran up a 30-3 lead before the inter val. Centre Maxime Mermoz, Huget and Lapandry went over in the second half. The halfbacks plus Fall and Mermoz were brought in by France coach

Philippe Saint-Andre after his team succumbed to a late try in Cordoba last Saturday. Pumas centre Felipe Contepomi kicked a first half penalty and converted flanker Tomas de la Vega’s late consolation try two minutes after France replacement front-rower Christopher Tolofua was sin-binned. Contepomi, who played his last test as captain but may play the inaugural southern hemisphere Rugby Championship later this year, took his Argentine record points tally to 628. The French victory, their first in Argentina for 10 years, levelled the two-match series and left the Pumas to ponder an error-riddled performance after having won their first two matches of the June test window. They beat Italy 37-22 two weeks ago. —Reuters

Phillies 7, Rays 6 At Philadelphia, pinch-hitter Jim Thome hit a home run leading off the bottom of the ninth inning to lift the Phillies over Tampa Bay after Jonathan Papelbon blew his first save in 18 chances this season. Juan Pierre and Jimmy Rollins also homered for the Phillies, helping manager Charlie Manuel earn his 900th career win. Thome connected off Jake McGee (2-2) for home run No. 609, tying Sammy Sosa for seventh place on baseball’s career list. Tampa Bay’s Jeff Keppinger was 5 for 5 with three RBIs in his first game after he missed 29 because of a broken toe. Papelbon (2-2) allowed his first earned runs in a save situation this season. Cardinals 8, Royals 2 At Kansas City, Matt Holliday and Allen Craig paced another big game for the St. Louis offense, and Adam Wainwright took advantage of the robust run support in the Cardinals’ victory over the Royals. Holliday finished 4 for 5 and drove in a pair of runs, pushing his stat line against Kansas City to 13 for 22 with two homers and eight RBIs in five games this season. Craig added a two-run homer and finished with three RBIs for the Cardinals. Wainwright (6-7) only allowed a bunt single and a broken-bat base hit in the first five innings. He ended up allowing two runs on four hits and two walks over seven. Luis Mendoza (2-4) was responsible for the Cardinals’ first four runs. Blue Jays 7, Marlins 1 At Miami, Edwin Encarnacion hit a tiebreaking homer in the top of the ninth and Colby Rasmus had a grand slam later in the inning, as Toronto handed the Marlins their sixth straight loss. Encarnacion led off the ninth with his 21st home run off Steve Cishek (4-1) to break a 1-all tie. After Jeff Mathis laid down a bunt that Cishek mishandled allowing Reed Johnson to score for a 3-1 lead, Rasmus connected on his third career grand slam off Edward Mujica. Darren Oliver (2-2) pitched a scoreless eighth for the Blue Jays, who have won six of eight. Rockies 11, Rangers 7 At Arlington, Texas, Tyler Colvin and Chris Nelson had consecutive two-out, two-run singles in an early outburst for Colorado, and the Rockies held on for a victory that ended the Texas Rangers’ seven-game winning streak. Before Colorado’s four-run third against Colby Lewis (6-6), the Rangers hadn’t even allowed more than three runs in a game during their winning streak. Wil Nieves and Dexter Fowler - the Nos. 8 and 9 batters - homered on consecutive pitches in the fifth off reliever Michael Kirkman for three more runs and an 11-1 lead. Rex Brothers (3-2), the third Colorado pitcher, threw two scoreless innings despite allowing leadoff doubles in both.

Pirates 4, Tigers 1 At Pittsburgh, Brad Lincoln allowed two hits and a run in six innings, Andrew McCutchen hit a three-run homer and the Pirates beat Detroit for their sixth win in seven games. Lincoln (4-2) carried a no-hitter through five innings before Ramon Santiago singled to lead off the sixth. Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera homered to lead off the seventh and end Lincoln’s afternoon. Lincoln had a career-high seven strikeouts and one walk. McCutchen continued a torrid pace with his 13th homer. He came into the game with 14 hits in his previous 25 at-bats. Detroit starter Max Scherzer (6-5) allowed three runs, three hits and had seven strikeouts. Astros 8, Indians 1 At Houston, rookie Dallas Keuchel pitched a complete game and J.D Martinez and Jordan Schafer hit consecutive homers in Houston’s four-run fifth inning, leading the Astros over Cleveland. Keuchel (1-0) allowed six hits and struck out three for his first win in his second major league start. Cleveland starter Jeanmar Gomez (4-7) got off to a great start, but was undone by his fifth inning struggles. He allowed six hits and five runs in 5 2-3 innings. Jose Altuve added a solo homer in the eighth inning and Chris Johnson finished with two RBIs and a pair of doubles for Houston. Asdrubal Cabrera led off the fourth inning with his ninth home run for Cleveland. Dogers 3, Angels 1 At Anaheim, California, Chris Capuano outdueled Ervin Santana with seven gritty innings, leading the Los Angeles Dodgers to a 3-1 victory over the Angels and help end the NL West leaders’ four-game losing streak. Capuano (9-2) allowed a run and seven hits,

Red Sox 8, Braves 4 At Boston, Will Middlebrooks had a solo homer among his three hits and drove in two runs, Franklin Morales gave Boston another decent start in place of Josh Beckett and the Red Sox beat Atlanta. Dustin Pedroia added three hits, a walk and had two RBIs for Boston, which won for the eighth time in 10 games to ensure a winning interleague record for the eighth straight season. The Red Sox improved to 10-7 against NL opponents. Morales (1-1) gave up three runs - two earned - on seven hits, striking out eight and walking one. He fanned a career-best nine in five innings last Sunday night against the Chicago Cubs. White Sox 8, Brewers 6 At Chicago, Dayan Viciedo homered and drove in four runs, Alex Rios delivered a tiebreaking single in the seventh inning, and the Chicago White Sox rallied to beat Milwaukee. With the game tied 6-6, Gordon Beckham led off the seventh with a single and stole second. After an intentional walk to Paul Konerko, Rios put Chicago up for good. Addison Reed got Corey Hart to ground into a force out to leave the bases loaded in the eighth and pitched a scoreless ninth for his ninth save in 10 chances. The Brewers stranded 10 runners. Viciedo, who entered 7-for-53 (.132) with one extrabase hit and one multi-hit game in June, had three hits including a two-run homer that gave the White Sox a 4-2 lead in the fourth. Jesse Crain (2-1) earned the win. Jose Veras took the loss (3-3). Giants 9, Athletics 8 At Oakland, California, Brandon Belt hit a go-ahead two-run homer in the sixth inning, Buster Posey added a two-run drive in the sev-

SAN DIEGO: Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera can’t handle an errant throw from second baseman Logan Forsythe as Seattle Mariners’ Justin Smoak slides in safely during the second inning of a baseball game. —AP struck out four and walked none while lowering his ERA from 2.71 to 2.51. The left-hander worked with runners on base in every inning except the second, giving up a leadoff hit in each of his last four innings. Ronald Belisario pitched a scoreless eighth and Kenley Jansen worked a perfect ninth for his 12th save in 15 chances. Santana (4-8) was charged with three runs two earned - and four hits over eight innings with 10 strikeouts and no walks. Nationals 3, Orioles 1 At Baltimore, Edwin Jackson took a one-hitter into the seventh inning, Adam LaRoche homered, and Washington beat rookie Wei-Yin Chen and Baltimore. Michael Morse had two hits and scored a run for the NL East-leading Nationals, who improved to 10-7 in interleague play and 2-3 against Baltimore. Adam Jones hit his team-high 19th home run for the Orioles, whose six-game home winning streak ended. Jackson (4-4) gave up one run, four hits and a walk in 6 1-3 innings. He retired the first 12 batters he faced and permitted only one runner past first base through six innings. Sean Burnett worked the eighth, and Tyler Clippard got three straight outs for his 12th save in 13 tries. Chen (7-3) allowed three runs, two earned, and six hits in five innings. The Taiwan native won his three previous starts, over Boston, Pittsburgh and Atlanta.

enth, and San Francisco backed Madison Bumgarner’s fourth straight win with just enough offense, holding on for a narrow victory over Oakland. After Shane Loux gave up Brandon Inge’s two-out single in the ninth, Santiago Casilla entered and allowed Derek Norris’ run-scoring single for his first career RBI before walking Brandon Moss to load the bases. Casilla then allowed Brandon Hicks’ two-run ground-rule double. Javier Lopez replaced Casilla and walked Seth Smith to put runners on the corners, then Clay Hensley - the 12th pitcher of the game and San Francisco’s fourth of the inning - came in and got Jemile Weeks on a fly to shallow center caught by second baseman Ryan Theriot to end the 4-hour, 15-minute game for his second save in three chances. Mariners 5, Padres 1 At San Diego, Felix Hernandez pitched seven impressive innings and hit a two-run double to lead Seattle over San Diego. Hernandez (5-5) turned in his second strong outing, limiting the Padres to one run and six hits. The right-hander struck out 10 and walked one. His only blemish was a balk that brought home San Diego’s only run in the first inning. Hernandez’s two-out, tworun double in the second capped a threerun inning in which all the runs were unearned due to second baseman Logan Forsythye’s error. — AP

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

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Park leads at Waterloo WATERLOO: South Korea’s Inbee Park shot a 5-under 66 to take a two-stroke lead after the third round of the inaugural Manulife Financial LPGA Classic on Saturday. The 2008 US Women’s Open champion had a 14-under 199 total at Grey Silo. She rebounded from a bogey on the par-3 17th

with a birdie on the par-5 18th. “I hit the ball very good today,” Park said. “I hit a lot of good iron shots, and I think I played the par 5s really good today. That helped me a lot. There was some more putts out there that I could have made, but I was really happy with the way I hit the ball today. Hopefully, tomorrow it will be a

better putting day.” Brittany Lang and Hee Kyung Seo shot a 67 to reach 12 under. Lang parred the first 15 holes, then birdied Nos. 16 and 17 and made a 5-foot eagle putt in 18. “I hit some good putts and some good shots and I just couldn’t get anything going,” Lang said. “But I stayed patient and positive

ONTARIO: Inbee Park of South Korea, watches her tee shot on the third hole during the third round of the LPGA Classic golf tournament. —AP

and finally made the birdie on 16 and got some energy and hit a great shot into 17. That was a great and even that, it’s tricky to read the greens out here. You can hit good putts and not make them, but I stayed positive and just hit two awesome shots on 18. I’m very happy with that finish.” Anna Nordqvist was 10 under after a 67. “I thought it was solid. I played really well yesterday afternoon, couldn’t make a putt, shot 1 over, so I was a little bit disappointed after yesterday,” Nordqvist said. “So, I think it kind of got me a little, you know, a little momentum coming into today. It was solid. I hit a lot of greens, took advantage of the par 5s and I think that’s the keys on this course.” China’s Shanshan Feng, coming off a major victory two weeks ago in the LPGA Championship, was 9 under along with Karin Sjodin, Nicole Hage and firstround leader Sandra Changkija. Feng had a 70, Sjodin shot 69, Hage 67 and Changkija 69. Stacy Lewis, a two-time winner this year, had a 69 to top the group at 8 under. “This has been the nicest tournament I think I’ve ever played in,” Hage said. “This is my fifth year on tour and it’s just been first class from just every little detail and the fans out here are just unbelievable. I played in seven Opens and these fans are awesome.” Michelle Wie was even par after a 73. —AP

Sri Lanka close in on big win over Pakistan GALLE: Sri Lanka turned the screws on Pakistan in the first Test in Galle after battering the tourists with both bat and ball on the third day yesterday. Sri Lanka bowled Pakistan out for 100 in the first innings in reply to their own 472, with off-spinner Suraj Randiv grabbing 4-13 and left-arm spinner Rangana Herath taking 3-30. The hosts surprisingly declined to enforce a follow-on despite a substantial lead of 372

runs and made 137-5 in their second knock when skipper Mahela Jayawardene declared in the final hour. Pakistan, set an improbable victory target of 510 runs, were reduced to 36-3 by stumps after seamer Nuwan Kulasekara dismissed stand-in captain Mohammad Hafeez and Taufeeq Umar. Herath had Azhar Ali taken at silly-point by Thilan Samaraweera, leaving nightwatchman Saeed Ajmal (11) and the team’s most experi-

GALLE: Sri Lanka’s bowler Rangana Herath appeals successfully for a leg before wicket decision against Pakistan’s batsman Younis Khan (unseen) during their first Test cricket match. —AP

Scoreboard GALLE: Scoreboard at the close on the third day of the first test between Sri Lanka and Pakistan yesterday: Pakistan first innings Mohammad Hafeez lbw b Randiv 20 Taufiq Umar lbw b Kulasekera 9 Azhar Ali c P Jayawardene b Kulasekara 0 Younis Khan lbw b Herath 29 Saeed Ajmal c Paranavitana b Randiv 0 Asad Shafiq c P Jayawardene b Herath 0 Mohammad Ayub lbw b Herath 25 Adnan Akmal run out 9 Abdur Rehman lbw b Randiv 1 Umar Gul c P Jayawardene b Randiv 2 Junaid Khan not out 2 Extras: (lb-2, w-1) 3 Total (all out, 54.3 overs) 100 Fall: 1-17, 2-17, 3-43, 4-43, 5-44, 6-65, 7-88, 8-94, 9-98 Bowling: Kulasekara 13-7-27-2 (w-1), Pradeep 9-2-28-0, Herath 21-6-30-3, Mathews 2-2-0-0, Randiv 9.3-1-13-4. Second innings Mohammad Hafeez c M Jayawardene b Kulasekara 4 Taufiq Umar b Kulasekara 10 Azhar Ali c Samaraweera b Herath 7 Younis Khan not out 0

Saeed Ajmal not out 11 Extras: (b-4) 4 Total: (for three wickets, 15 overs) 36 Fall: 1-8, 2-21, 3-25. Bowling: Kulasekera 7-2-13-2, Pradeep 5-2-18-0, Herath 3-2-1-1. Sri Lanka first Innings 472 ( T Dilshan 101, K Sangakkara 199 not out, M Jayawardene 62, Saeed Ajmal 5-146) Second innings T Paranavitana lbw b Ajmal 25 T Dilshan c Akmal b Junaid 56 K Sangakkara c Taufiq b Ajmal 1 M Jayawardene c Akmal b Junaid 14 T Samaraweera c Younis b Junaid 15 A Mathews not out 7 P Jayawardene not out 9 Extras: (b-6, lb-2, nb-2) 10 Total:(for five wickets declared, 41 overs) 137 Fall: 1-81, 2-85, 3-93, 4-114, 5-119 Bowling: Gul 4-0-11-0, Junaid 13-2-44-3 (nb-2), Rehman 5-0-25-0, Ajmal 17-3-47-2, Younis 2-0-2-0.

enced batsman Younis Khan (0) at the crease. The hosts, overwhelming favourites to go 1-0 up in the three-match series, have two days to force a result on the spin-friendly wicket despite forecasts of wet weather on both days. Pakistan’s target was way above the highest fourth innings total ever achieved to win a Test match — 418-7 by the West Indies against Australia in Antigua in 2003. Pakistan’s best fourth-innings performance is 343-3 which helped them draw the Dubai Test against South Africa in 2010. The Test has been marred by at least 10 contentious decisions over three days by umpires Steve Davis of Australia and Ian Gould of England, with six of them going against the tourists. But the Decision Review System (DRS), which allows reviews by the television umpire, is not being used in this series. Pakistan, who barely managed to surpass their lowest-ever total against Sri Lanka of 90, were bundled out at the stroke of lunch after resuming the day at 48-5. The tourists were dealt a cruel blow within the first 30 minutes of play when Younis was given out leg-before for 29 by umpire Davis. Television replays showed a clear insideedge off the bat on to the pad and a surprised Younis, who had scored 14 of the first 17 runs of the day, stood his ground before walking off. There was no doubt over the next wicket as Adnan Akmal was run out for nine when Mohammad Ayub refused a second run and both batsmen were stranded at the same end. Ayub, making his Test debut aged 32, plodded for two hours to score a dour 25 when he was ninth out, leg-before to Herath. Sri Lanka’s second innings was built around an opening stand of 81 between Tillakaratne Dilshan (56) and Tharanga Paranavitana (25). Gould ruled Dilshan not out when Ajmal appealed for a leg-side catch by the wicketkeeper when the batsman was on 44. Replays showed the ball nick the bat. Ajmal, who bagged five wickets in the first innings, finally earned a break in his next over when Gould accepted his loud appeal for legbefore against Paranavitana. Dilshan was leg-before to left-arm seamer Junaid Khan and Kumar Sangakkara, who made 199 not out in the first outing, was snapped up in the covers off Ajmal for one. The 22-year-old Junaid also dismissed Mahela Jayawardene and Thilan Samaraweera to finish with 3-44. —AFP

CROMWELL: Fredrik Jacobson, of Sweden, chips out of a greenside bunker on the fifth hole in the third round of the Travelers Championship golf tournament. —AP

Davis, Thatcher share lead at Travelers Championship CROMWELL: Briton Brian Davis continued to tear up the front nine at TPC River Highlands and it helped him gain a share of the lead at the Travelers Championship after the third round on Saturday. The Englishman shot a sizzling six-under par 64 to hold the 54-hole lead with American Roland Thatcher on a 12-under total of 198. Davis reaped seven birdies from the first eight holes to make the turn in 29 before finishing with just a birdie and a bogey over his final nine. “It was just one of those days I came out hot,” Davis told reporters. “Every club was the perfect club. I seemed to be hitting my shots in the right spot where I had an uphill putt.” That has been the story of the week for Davis, who has carved up the first nine holes and then held on coming in. He is 11under on the front nine this week and just one-under over the final nine. “When we hit the turn the wind picked up a little bit and played a little bit tricky for

a few holes and then it dropped again,” Davis said. “So I was delighted to have hung in on the back nine.” Thatcher rolled in six birdies and a bogey in his 65, but dropped a shot on the 17th hole that cost him the outright lead, having taken top spot with three consecutive birdies from the 13th. The leaders were two shots clear of Americans John Rollins (65) and James Driscoll (66), and Australian Stuart Appleby (67). Defending champion Fredrik Jacobson of Sweden was among a group of six a shot further back, including triple major-winning Irishman Padraig Harrington (65) and American Matt Kuchar (66). “I made eight birdies in 10 holes, which is nice when it’s happening,” Harrington said. “I have to carry that through to tomorrow and I have to go low again.” Play began early as much of the field were forced to finish their second rounds following storms on Friday. —Reuters

Al-Fadly Brothers with Abdo Chidiac

Kuwaiti Ahmed Al-Fadly books spot at Red Bull King of the Rock in Alcatraz KUWAIT: Physical and aggressive one-onone basketball, wind and hot weather, nothing could stop Ahmed Al-Fadly from winning the Red Bull King of the Rock in Kuwait. Ahmed defeated six opponents including his twin brother Abdulaziz and earned a “golden ticket” to compete in the finals in Alcatraz, San Francisco. The twin brothers overcame all opponents and reached the final to setup a mouthwatering clash. The final was tough as both players knew each other very well but it was Ahmed who had the upper hand as he succeeded offensively outscoring his brother by 6 points. “I’m so happy to win the first Red Bull King of the Rock in Kuwait. The competition format is tough and the level was so high but my consistent playing helped me reach the final and win. Hard luck for my twin brother Abdulaziz, he played brilliantly the whole tournament but at the end someone has to win. I will not rest but will prepare very seriously and improve my individual skills for the finals in Alcatraz,” said the winner Ahmed Al-Fadly. The event was held at the Marina Basketball Courts with the participation of 64 of the best oneon-one basketball players in Kuwait. Each player had to win a game of five minutes to advance to the next round. Abdo Chidiac, a Lebanese professional basketball player acted as the competition director. He was responsible for the overall competition and the athlete management. Chidiac was part of the Lebanese National Basketball Team for 15 years. He also played for several professional clubs most notably Sagesse where he won

the Arab Basketball Championship in 1998 and FIBA Asia Championship in 1999. Chidiac a well-known three pointer won the Lebanese Basketball league twice and achieved many individual accolades and accomplishments including several Defensive Player of the year and was among the top 5 scorers for five years. In 2010, Red Bull King of the Rock went down in history as the first official sporting event ever to be held in Alcatraz and the first time basketball had been played on The Rock since the inmates left the island over 50 years ago. Now in its third year, the global one-onone basketball tournament will return with the most competitive field to date. Bigger and better than ever, Red Bull King of the Rock has expanded to qualifiers in 27 countries, including 33 in the United States. From these qualifiers, 64 finalists will head to the island to put it all in the line in The Yard in Alcatraz on September 22. The 64 finalists will include: the top player from the 24 international final qualifiers; the top player from each of the 33 US qualifiers; the five top runners-up from the U.S. qualifiers; and returning champions Izeah “Clutch” Bowman (2010) and Hugh “Baby Shaq” Jones (2011). International qualifiers will take place in the following countries: Dominican Republic, Georgia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, United Arab Emirates, Czech Republic, Germany, Lithuania, Slovak Republic, Austria, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Jamaica, Italy, Romania, Serbia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Spain, Turkey, Brazil, Canada and Ukraine.

Zimbabwe crush South Africa HARARE: Zimbabwe crushed favorites South Africa by nine wickets yesterday as the non-cap Twenty20 tri-nations tournament at Harare Sports Club reached a stunning climax. It was the second time in five days that the host nation put their powerful neighbours to the sword in a warm-up event for the ICC World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka this September and October. Zimbabwe won by 29 runs last Wednesday in the pool phase of a tournament that included Bangladesh, but lost by six wickets to South Africa Saturday and entered the final as outsiders. South Africa made 146-6 off 20 overs with Faf du Plessis (66) top scoring and Zimbabwe

reached 150-1 with 17 balls to spare thanks to a superb unbeaten partnership between captain Brendan Taylor (59) and Hamilton Masakadza (58). Many South African cricket writers had argued against the Proteas going to Harare, saying Zimbabwe and Bangladesh were too weak to provide meaningful opposition. “I am over the moon after beating a quality team and so proud of the boys,” said No 3 batsman-cum-wicketkeeper Taylor. “We don’t get days like these very often so we are going to enjoy ourselves tonight.” “The squad has been working really hard over the past three months and we accept that we must put in more hard yards than some other teams. After losing on

Saturday, I just told the boys to remain calm.” It was a dismal tournament for South Africa opener and captain Hashim Amla as an 88 not out was followed by a string of low scores and he made just three runs in the final after big hitter Richard Levi went for a duck off his first ball. “I thought 146 was a defendable total so hats off to Zimbabwe,” said Amla. “While Zimbabwe were the better team on the day, we have learnt a lot regarding who should go to Sri Lanka and who should hot.” Taylor was voted man of the match and the four half-centuries of No 1 batsman Masakadza during the eight-day tournament earned him the man of the series award. —AFP

Yussif Al-Sili in one of the qualifier games

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

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Eaton sets world record

OMAHA: Ryan Lochte (left) and Michael Phelps greet each other as Lochte leaves and Michael Phelps arrives at a news conference at the US Olympic swimming trials.—AP

Phelps, Lochte prepare to reignite pool rivalry OMAHA: Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte are keeping everyone guessing about how many events they will swim at the London Olympics as they prepare to square off in the first round of the most anticipated swimming rivalry in years. The pair have both given themselves the chance to better Phelps’ golden haul of eight gold medals from the Beijing Games four years ago by tantalisingly entering a record number of events at next week’s US Olympic trials. Phelps has entered seven individual events, which would give him a total of 10 when the three relays are added, while Lochte has signed up for a staggering 11 individual events and possibly 14 in all. While neither swimmer was expected to compete in all those races at the trials, let alone in London, neither man was giving anything away when pressed on what their magic number might be. “I’m not chasing a medal count,” said Lochte, who won five gold medals at last year’s world championships in China, at a news conference on Saturday. “I’m just going to step up to the blocks and see what my body will let me do.” Like everyone else, Lochte remains in awe of what Phelps did in Beijing but rather than concede defeat, the 27-yearold from Florida said he was inspired to do better himself. He gave up junk food and devoted himself to an even tougher training routine which paid off when he beat Phelps in two head-to-head races at the world championships. “He’s the world’s best swimmer, ever,” Lochte said. “But he’s

human, he’s not a fish or anything. “For me to be in the same era as him, and to be in the same events as him, and being able to race him until the finish, it’s awesome and I love it.” Phelps, who is retiring after the London Olympics, was just as coy. He was scheduled to race Lochte today in the 400 metres individual medley, even though he vowed never to swim the race again after Beijing. Asked whether he was serious about competing in the 400, he declined to give an answer other than “we’ll see.” He arrived at the news conference looking relaxed and sporting a thin moustache. Quizzed as to when he would shave it off, he kept that a secret as well. “I can’t give that away,” he said, only half in jest. “If I say I’m doing it tomorrow, then you’ll know I’m swimming the 400 IM. If I say I’m doing it today, that means I’m not. It will come off when the rest of my body hair comes off.” Phelps struggled for motivation in the first two years after Beijing but has been making up for lost time by training harder than ever in the last 18 months. He admitted that Lochte had “destroyed me over the last couple of years at major meets” but said he had rediscovered his motivation and wanted to end his Olympic career on a high. He already has 14 gold medals, more than any other athlete in any sport, but still wanted more. “It all goes back to what I’m here to do. I have goals that I want to achieve,” he said. “We’ll see after this week what size cherry I want to put on the top of my sundae.”—Reuters

EUGENE: Ashton Eaton set a glittering decathlon world record at the US Olympic trials on Saturday, stealing the limelight from a star-studded cast of athletes in cold and wet conditions in Eugene, Oregon. The 24-yearold’s total of 9,039 points bettered the 2001 mark held by Czech great Roman Sebrle by 13 points and capped an extraordinary meeting for the American, who had already set decathlon records for the 100 metres and long jump legs on Friday. Eaton will head to London in a powerful decathlon duo with runner-up and world champion Trey Hardee, but Olympic champion Bryan Clay’s hopes of defending his title were shattered. Clay found trouble in the 110 metres hurdles and discus legs of the 10-event competition to finish 12th. Dawn Harper ensured she will defend her gold medal at London, however, after winning the 100 hurdles with a time of 12.73 seconds, edging runner-up Kellie Wells and third-placed Lolo Jones. As one of the top three finishers to qualify with the Olympic standard, Jones earned a shot at redemption at London, having crashed in the Beijing Games final four years ago when leading. World champion Carmelita Jeter stormed to victory in the women’s 100 in 10.92 seconds to top Tianna Madison, who ran 10.97. Third place was being reviewed after Jeneba Tarmoh and three-times world 200 champion Allyson Felix tied with a time of 11.068. Former Olympic champion Justin Gatlin earlier took a confident step forward on his comeback trail, breezing through the first round of the men’s 100 in an eye-catching 9.90 seconds. Gatlin, who won gold at the 2004 Athens Games but missed four years of competition between 2006 and 2010 due to a doping suspension, had no problem with the frigid weather as he topped the time-sheets. “It really defines warriors, how well you can get up for it,” he said with a smile. Tyson Gay and Walter Dix, expected to be his main rivals in

heat with a time of 10.03. Two-times Olympic shot put silver medallist Adam Nelson, hampered by a groin injury, missed his chance to make the US team by finishing 15th. Former world champions Reese Hoffa and Christian Cantwell, and reigning global indoor winner Ryan Whiting led qualifying with Hoffa making the top throw of 21.22 metres.The trials continue through July 1.—Reuters

Sunday’s semi-finals and finals, also advanced without fuss. Gay, in only his second race in a year because of hip surgery, clocked exactly 10 seconds to win his preliminary with the day’s second fastest time. “I was a little nervous with the start ... but all and all it felt pretty good,” said the world’s second fastest man behind Jamaican Usain Bolt. Olympic bronze medallist Dix also won his

EUGENE: Ashton Eaton reacts with Curtis Beach and Joe Detmer after the 1500m during the decathlon competition at the US Olympic Track and Field Trials. —AP

Coach wants women’s 100m tiebreaker delayed EUGENE: Athletics officials should wait until Allyson Felix and Jeneba Tarmoh compete in the 200 meters trials before they make any move to break their tie for the final US Olympic spot in the 100, their coach said yesterday. Felix and Tarmoh finished in a rare dead heat for third place in the 100 at the US Olympic trials on Saturday, both credited with times of 11.068 seconds after a review of the photo finish. The tie must be broken because only three athletes per

event can represent their country in the Games. “They need to leave my athletes alone and let me coach them in the 200, then make a decision,” Bob Kersee told Reuters in an early morning telephone call. Kersee said he understood USA Track and Field (USATF) officials were talking about Olympic 200m silver medallist Felix and Tarmoh doing a runoff today. Both athletes are running in the 200, which begins on Thursday and concludes next Saturday. “The powers-that-be need to come up with a better

decision. This makes no sense,” the coach said, adding that he would not be a part of deciding which athlete goes to London. “It would be like, which kid do you love the most?” he added. Kersee said the decision should be made after the 200. “Af ter that, let Allyson and Jeneba, both of their managers and one major USA Track & Field official look at the photos,” Kersee said. “If they all agree they can’t decide, then let them come up with a procedure to make the decision.”

USATF officials said on Saturday not even a review of pictures from two photo finish cameras could break the tie. Tarmoh was originally given third place but after a close study of the photo finish officials called it a dead heat. Pictures from the camera on the outside of the track were inconclusive due to athletes’ arms blocking a clear view of their torsos. The torso is usually used to determine finishes and times. Officials then reviewed the camera on the inside and called the race a tie.—Reuters

England down West Indies

Lindsay Whalen

Whalen lifts Lynx past Sky MINNEAPOLIS: Lindsay Whalen scored 25 points and the Minnesota Lynx beat the Chicago Sky 79-67 Saturday. Taj McWilliams-Franklin scored 12 points, and Seimone Augustus and Maya Moore added 10 each for Minnesota, which has won two straight after its lone loss of the year last Sunday. Sylvia Fowles had her ninth doubledouble in 10 games for Chicago, with 22 points and 13 rebounds. Sonja Petrovic added 13 points and Swin Cash 11 for the Sky, which has lost two straight and fell to second place in the Eastern Conference. The Lynx (12-1) had to sweat out a slow start to the second half before pulling away. Fever 73, Shock 70 At Tulsa, Oklahoma, Tammy SuttonBrown made a tiebreaking free throw with 37 seconds to play and Tamika Catchings added a key offensive rebound, assist and a pair of free throws down the stretch to lead the Fever over Tulsa. Sutton-Brown’s free throw gave the Fever (7-4) the lead for good, 68-67. She missed the second attempt and Catchings, who had a team-high 16 points, came up with the rebound. The reigning WNBA MVP then passed it to

Erin Phillips for a 3-pointer from the right wing with 16 seconds remaining. Tulsa’s Temeka Johnson made a 3 to bring the Shock (1-11) within one with 12 seconds to play, but Catchings added two free throws 3 seconds later for the final margin. Ivory Latta missed a gametying 3-point attempt with 3 seconds to go. Sparks 93, Mercury 84 At Phoenix, Kristi Toliver scored a career-high 29 points as Los Angeles took a big lead early and cruised to victory over Phoenix. Alana Beard added 18 points and Jantel Lavender 11 points and nine rebounds for the Sparks (10-3), who led by 22 at halftime. Los Angeles has won eight of 10, including three straight after losing back-to-back games last weekend. Rookie Sammy Prahalis scored a season-high 22 points and had five assists and four steals while DeWanna Bonner had 24 points for the Mercury (38). Phoenix, which pulled within seven points in the final 2 minutes, has lost four of its last five. Candace Parker, the league’s thirdleading scorer at 19.8 points a game, did not play for the Sparks due to a sore knee.—AP

NOTTINGHAM: Alex Hales showed England could cope at Twenty20 level without Kevin Pietersen as his superb 99 saw them to a seven-wicket win over the West Indies at Trent Bridge here yesterday. World Twenty20 champions England, set a challenging 173 to win, finished on 173 for three with two balls to spare in their first match at this level since Pietersen retired from all limited overs internationals. Hales’s score was the highest by an England batsman in a Twenty20 international, surpassing Eoin Morgan’s 85 not out against South Africa in Johannesburg in 2009. The 23-year-old Hayles, taking the opener’s spot vacated by Pietersen, faced 68 balls with four sixes and six fours on his Nottinghamshire home ground as England gave themselves a boost ahead of their World Twenty20 title defence in Sri Lanka in September. But, in sight of becoming only the seventh batsman to make a Twenty20 international hundred, he was yorked by fast bowler Fidel Edwards. His partnership of 159 with Ravi Bopara (59) was also the third highest for any wicket in all Twenty20 internationals. “The way Alex Hayles played was fantastic,” said England Twenty20 captain and Nottinghamshire colleague Stuart Broad, celebrating his 26th birthday yesterday. “He was pretty distraught not to make his hundred and 20odd thousand people in Trent Bridge felt the same.” This result meant West Indies had failed to win a single international match this tour after England three-match Test and one-day series by 2-0 margins. England lost opener Craig Kieswetter early in their chase. But the 6ft 5in Hales, playing only his fifth Twenty20 international, took up the challenge by pulling Ravi Rampaul for six. He also scored boundaries off the first balls from spinner Sunil Narine and seamer Bravo before lofting Bravo for his third six. And when Hales forced West Indies captain Darren Sammy square through the offside for four, he surpassed his previous Twenty20 international best of 62 not out against the West Indies at The Oval in September last year. Hales had a lucky break when a bottom edge off Narine went for four but there was no denying his class when he hooked Edwards for six to surpass Morgan’s mark. England needed 17 off the last two overs but Bopara struck two successive fours off Rampaul, the first seeing him to a 39ball fifty. Bopara too fell with England in sight of victory when he holed out off spinner Marlon Samuels, having been dropped on 44. Earlier the West Indies, who’s slumped to 57 for three at the halfway stage, recovered to 172 for four on the back of Dwayne Smith’s T20 international best 70 and allrounder Dwayne Bravo’s 54 not out. Opener Smith’s 54-ball knock featured five sixes and five fours. Together with Bravo, he put on 77 for the fourth wicket before adding an unbroken 65 with Pollard (23 not out). England, who lost the toss, struck an early blow when they removed dangerman Chris Gayle for just two after he top-edged a pull off a Steven Finn bouncer to Jonathan Bairstow, running round from fine leg. Fast-medium bowler Broad took a wicket with his first ball when, after coming on as first change Lendl Simmons pulled him to Bairstow, running in from deep square leg. England’s next match is the first of a five-game one-day international series against Australia at Lord’s on Friday, while West Indies face New Zealand in two Twenty20 internationals in Florida on June 30 and July 1.—AFP

NOTTINGHAM: England’s Alex Hales is bowled for 99 during the International T20 match at Trent Bridge against West Indies.—AP

SCOREBOARD NOTTINGHAM: Final scoreboard in the lone Twenty20 international between England and the West Indies at Trent Bridge here yesterday: West Indies D. Smith c Kieswetter b Finn 70 C. Gayle c Bairstow b Finn 2 L. Simmons c Bairstow b Broad 6 M. Samuels c Kieswetter b Swann 4 D. Bravo not out 54 K. Pollard not out 23 Extras (b1, lb4, w8) 13 Total (4 wkts, 20 overs) 172 Fall of wickets: 1-10 (Gayle), 2-24 (Simmons), 3-30 (Samuels), 4-107 (Smith) Did not bat: D Ramdin, D Sammy, S Narine, R Rampaul, F Edwards Bowling: Finn 4-0-22-2 (3w); Dernbach 4-0-46-0 (4w); Broad 4-0-33-1 (1w); Swann 4-0-32-1; Patel 4-0-34-0; England C. Kieswetter c Smith b Rampaul


A. Hales b Rampaul 99 R. Bopara c Edwards b Samuels 59 E. Morgan not out 2 J. Buttler not out 0 Extras (lb2, w7, nb1) 10 Total (3 wkts, 19.4 overs) 173 Fall of wickets: 1-10 (Kieswetter), 2-169 (Hales), 3-171 (Bopara) Did not bat: J Bairstow, S Patel, S Broad, G Swann, J Dernbach, S Finn Bowling: Rampaul 4-0-37-2 (2w); Edwards 4-0-33-0 (1nb, 5w); Narine 4-028-0; Bravo 2-0-21-0; Sammy 3-0-22-0; Pollard 1-0-15-0; Samuels 1.4-0-15-1. Result: England won by seven wickets Man-of-the-match: Alex Hales (ENG)


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

sp orts

Alonso thrills home fans with Valencia GP victory

AUCKLAND: In this photo released by Rally New Zealand, France’s Sebastien Loeb (right) and co-driver Daniel Elena of Monaco hold up their trophies after winning the Rally of New Zealand. —AP

Loeb grabs Rally of NZ NEW ZEALAND: Citroen’s Sebastien Loeb won his third Rally of New Zealand yesterday to extend his lead over team mate Mikko Hirvonen in the World Rally Championship. The eight-times world champion held a slim 6.4 second lead over Finn Hirvonen when the final stages began in Auckland, but eased to victory by almost half a minutes at the end of the seven short stages. Norway’s Petter Solberg was third in a Ford, 96 seconds behind Frenchman Loeb, who won his fifth race of the season and picked up a bonus point by finishing third in the final ‘power’ stage of the race. “Its been a long weekend and my driving has not been perfect,” Loeb said. “We made a few mis-

takes in the closing power stage when we were pushing too hard but the most important thing is that we have won. “I really had to fight hard with my team mate but to finish first and second with him is an incredible result for the team, so I’m really happy leave here with a victory.” Estonia’s Ott Tanak produced the only real incident of the final day’s racing when he rolled his Ford on the 20th stage and was forced to retire. He had been running fifth at the time. Loeb, who also won the New Zealand rally in 2005 and 2008, has now moved to 145 points in the overall standings. Hirvonen is second in the championship with 107 points. —Reuters

VALENCIA: Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso thrilled home fans by winning an incident-packed European Grand Prix in Valencia yesterday to take the overall championship lead and become Formula One’s first repeat winner of the season. The Spaniard was joined on the podium by two former Ferrari champions - Kimi Raikkonen second for Lotus and Michael Schumacher third for Mercedes. The victory lifted Alonso, who had started 11th on the grid, to the top of the standings with 111 points, 20 clear of Red Bull’s Australian Mark Webber, after eight of 20 races. It was the 29th career win for Alonso, who won his two titles with Renault in 2005 and 2006. Alonso was helped by the mechanical problems that forced pole starter Sebastian Vettel’s Red Bull and the Lotus of Romain Grosjean out of the race, while McLaren’s previous championship leader Lewis Hamilton crashed out in the closing laps. It was still a momentous achievement on a twisty street circuit that had seen three of the past four winners start on pole and nobody win from lower than third place. “It’s maybe the best victory I have had in terms of emotions,” Alonso told a news conference after sharing the emotion with fans and being mobbed by photographers in the Mediterranean sunshine. “Here now, with the European championship of foot-

ball on, and all the fans, I am feeling very proud to be Spanish at the moment,” said Alonso, who had wiped away tears of joy as he stood for the anthems. Hamilton was fighting to defend third place when he was knocked off the track by Venezuelan Pastor Maldonado’s Williams, with two laps remaining. The 2008 champion pounded the steering wheel with his fists in fury, before tossing it out of the cockpit. Seven times world champion Schumacher made his way through the debris to grab third in his Mercedes, his first podium finish since he was at Ferrari in 2006 and first of a comeback that started in 2010. Now 43, he was the oldest driver to stand on the Formula One podium since Australian Jack Brabham finished second at Brands Hatch in Britain at the age of 44 in 1970. “As we crossed the line, I asked my team where we finished,” said the German. “They said third and I couldn’t believe it. I had lost count. It’s a wonderful feeling to be back after such a long time.” Vettel, world champion in 2010 and 2011, had led from pole and was heading towards his third consecutive victory in the port city when his Red Bull lost power in lap 32. He parked up, tossing a glove at the wall in disgust. “The engine stalled and switched off and there was nothing we could have done. At the moment it’s not clear what exactly was the prob-

lem,” he said after returning to the pits. Grosjean had been competing for the top spot, and the chance of becoming the eighth different winner in eight races, when the Frenchman also had to retire with an alternator problem when placed second in lap 41 of the 57 lap race. Alonso, who had said

SPAIN: Ferrari Formula One driver Fernando Alonso, from Spain, celebrates his victory in the European Formula One Grand Prix on the podium at the Valencia street circuit. —AP

Federer sets sights on Wimbledon title LONDON: For almost a decade it seemed Roger Federer was guest of honor on finals day at nearly every grand slam event but over the past 12 months Novak Djokovic and Rafa Nadal have conspired to strike him off the guest list. Between winning his first major at Wimbledon in 2003 and a record 16th slam at the Australian Open in 2010, Federer failed to reach the showpiece match in one of the big four tournaments just five times and contested an astonishing 22 finals. So regular were his appearances in the finals that, when he was absent, it felt a little like attending a Madonna concert where the Queen of Pop had failed to show up. Unfortunately for Federer, considered the most gifted player to have swung a tennis racket, his run of success has dried up and he is not happy being just one of the crowd. Wimbledon, US Open and Australian Open champion Djokovic and Nadal have split the last nine major trophies between them and they have also contested the last four slam finals. Federer feels it is time someone gatecrashed their party and winning a record-equalling seventh Wimbledon crown would be a good start. “It’s my time of the year now,” said Federer who was kitted out in a collared, long-sleeved cream jumper complete with purple trim and a green ‘RF’ logo embossed on the upper right arm. “I fancy my chances here and at the US Open. It’s exciting times ahead,” he told reporters at Wimbledon on Saturday. The rivalry between the top three has electrified not just the tennis community but the whole sporting world. It seems each time one of the trio reaches a final, a host of records are on the line. Over the next 42 days, not only will they will be chasing a Wimbledon crown but the number one ranking is also up for grabs, as is the Olympic gold medal when the All England Club hosts the tennis event during the London Games. Djokovic is a bona fide member

of the top-three club now but he admitted that had it not been for the FedererNadal rivalry, he might not have been the player he is today. “ Their rivalry is one of the most respected rivalries in the history of our sport, if not the biggest rivalry,” Djokovic, who will begin the defence of his crown against Juan Carlos Ferrero on Monday, said. “They’re two great champions, two tennis players that made the history of this sport. Every time you a see a Federer/Nadal match, everybody is excited. Even I’m excited to see it. “Playing against both of them made me a better player. They also made me work harder.” It is no wonder that Nadal, who has already bagged 11 majors, relishes the challenge of playing in this era. “I feel very lucky to be part of these two rivalries. It’s something that brings special motivation to my game, the motivation to keep improving my tennis,” said Nadal who won a record seventh French Open title two weeks ago. “If you are not able to improve your level you are dead in this very competitive world of tennis.” Federer is aware many people have written his tennis obituary over the past two years, especially after he was knocked out in the Wimbledon quarterfinals in 2010 and 2011, and he is determined to show he can rise from the ashes. “I want to do better; I have to do better in this event,” said the Swiss who was beaten here by Tomas Berdych in 2010 and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga last year. “I could have gone further the last couple (of years). Maybe the other guys were just too good. Maybe I wasn’t quite at my best. Who knows what the combination was? “But it’s up to me to make that difference now and take it to the next step. Then once hopefully I am there, I can reach for the title. “A seventh would be amazing. That would be tying Pete (Sampras) which I think would be absolutely fantastic. I am dreaming of the title. There’s no denying that.” —Reuters

WIMBLEDON: In these undated file photos, top men tennis players at Wimbledon, are shown. They are (top row from left) Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Andy Murray, (bottom row from left) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Juan Martin del Potro, John Isner and Milos Raonic. —AP

after qualifying on Saturday that the ‘podium is out of reach’, defied conventional wisdom to take his second victory after Malaysia in March Marussia’s Timo Glock missed the race after failing to recover from a stomach complaint that forced the German to miss qualifying on Saturday. —Reuters

Hunter-Reay clinches IndyCar race in Iowa

WIMBLEDON: In these undated file photos, top women players are shown. They are (top row from left) Maria Sharapova, Victoria Azarenka, Agnieszka Radwanska and Petra Kvitova, (bottom row from left) Serena Williams, Venus Williams, Caroline Wozniacki and Kim Clijsters. —AP

Sharapova aims to make more history LONDON: Maria Sharapova admits winning Wimbledon just weeks after securing her first French Open title would be the crowning glory of her career. Sharapova captivated the All England Club as a 17-year-old who came from nowhere to beat Serena Williams in the final eight years ago and the Russian is convinced she is finally back in the right form and condition to emulate that astonishing triumph. The Russian’s victory over Sara Errani in the Roland Garros final earlier this month was a cathartic moment for the 25-year-old, who had gone four years without winning a major as she struggled with the aftermath of serious shoulder surgery. Her gruelling journey back to Grand Slam glory, and the world number one ranking she now holds for the first time since 2008, is a testament to Sharapova’s fierce competitive instincts, but she has never been one to rest on her laurels. “I don’t know if words can really describe the feeling of winning a Grand Slam,” Sharapova said on the eve of the tournament. “I think everybody knows the meaning of this tournament for me, ever since I was a young girl, how special it was. To be part of its history for the rest of my career and life means a lot. “I certainly hope I can achieve the success I had many years ago here.” Sharapova was beaten in the final by Petra Kvitova last year and her bid for revenge could be aided by the relatively poor form of several of the top seed’s main rivals. Kvitova arrives in London desperately hoping to rediscover the winning feeling she savoured 12 months ago. Since defeating Sharapova, the 22year-old has struggled to live up to her new billing as a major force in the women’s game. She has no titles on the WTA Tour

this year and suffered semi-final defeats against Sharapova in the Australian and French Opens. One of the most fascinating subplots of the tournament will be the form of Serena Williams, who could meet Sharapova in a re-match of the 2004 final. Losing to France’s Virginie Razzano in the French Open first round last month ranked as the worst Grand Slam result of Williams’ illustrious career. If the 30-year-old American, who has 13 majors to her name-including four at Wimbledon-is in the right frame of mind, there is every chance she could bounce back quickly. Prior to her Paris nightmare, Williams had been in good form, winning 17 successive claycourt matches and she is usually even more dominant at Wimbledon. “Whether I had won in Paris or lost like I did in the first round, I am always extremely motivated. If anything, I think losing makes me even more motivated,” Serena said. “If I didn’t feel confident I wouldn’t be here. Especially at this tournament, I think if you have a lot of confidence you can play really well. “I don’t know why, but I get confident out here. I have fun. I enjoy playing on this grass. So maybe that’s been able to help me.” World number two Victoria Azarenka could be a serious threat if she can recapture the form that saw her win the Australian Open and three other titles in the first four months of the year. But Australia’s Sam Stosur, the reigning US Open champion, has endured a slump since her maiden Grand Slam triumph. Meanwhile, two giants of the women’s game-five-time Wimbledon champion Venus Williams and fourtime major winner Kim Clijsters-will be unseeded at Wimbledon for the first time in more than a decade after struggles with illness and injur y respectively. —AFP

NEWTON: Ryan Hunter-Reay passed Scott Dixon with 12 laps to go and held on to win for the second straight week in a wild IndyCar Series race that ended under caution Saturday night. Hunter-Reay, the winner last week at the Milwaukee Mile, moved to second in the season standings with his seventh career IndyCar victory. The victory was Andretti Autosport’s fourth in six races in Iowa. “I wish we had some more 1-mile ovals coming up. Those are fun. The racing that we’ve had on them, it seemed like it was pretty exciting. This is so cool. This is a difference maker for sure,” Hunter-Reay said. Teammate Marco Andretti was second, followed by Tony Kanaan and Dixon. Andretti won last year on the 0.875-mile (1.41-kilometer) oval. It was only fitting Hunter-Reay would win under caution, because 10 of the 25 cars failed to finish. What was also notable was that Hunter-Reay essentially used the same setup Andretti tested with at Iowa last week to beat his teammate. Hunter-Reay crossed under yellow as Katherine Legge spun out with two laps left. “We basically raced the way he tested it. Marco and I raced really hard out there. It’s great to have a teammate like that. So happy to be in victory lane twice in a row,” Hunter-Reay said. It seemed as if Hunter-Reay was about the only driver to leave Iowa with a smile on his face. Pole sitter Dario Franchitti was knocked out after his engine blew before the green flag dropped - a blow that could cripple his shot at a fourth straight series title. Points leader Will Power retired just 68 laps in after E.J. Viso hit him from behind and saw his series lead dwindle to three points. James Hinchcliffe, who entered the race second in the points chase, caught the wall and didn’t finish either. A race delayed for 45 minutes by storms and marked by a series of early incidents seemed to finally become clear with 71 laps to go. Predictably, it didn’t last long. Leader Ryan Briscoe drifted down to the apron in the final corner because he was going in for tires. But in nearly the same spot where Power and Viso got collected, Briscoe was hit by rookie Josef Newgarden. “He’s come from way too far back there. It’s too late in the corner to make a pass like that,” Briscoe said. “He’s a rookie and he’ll learn from it. It’s a shame because I think on fuel we were in position to win the thing.” Franchitti had arguably run better than anyone in his four starts at Iowa. On Saturday night, he could barely get started. — AP

IOWA: Helio Castroneves (front) of Brazil leads the pack in turn four during the IndyCar Iowa Corn Indy 250 auto race. —AP

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


19 Euro 2012 briefs

Black sheep Nasri puts France future in jeopardy DONETSK: Where there was controversy in France’s Euro 2012 campaign, which ended with a one-sided quarterfinal defeat by Spain on Saturday, Samir Nasri was never far away. The Manchester City midfielder began the tournament with a man-ofthe-match performance in the 1-1 draw with England, but went home in disgrace after a foul mouthed rant at a journalist from AFP. A talented but confrontational member of the squad, Nasri’s dwindling influence mirrored France’s fading performances and his off-pitch indiscretions mean his place in the national setup is now in jeopardy. Even his display against England was overshadowed by controversy, as he elected to celebrate his equalising goal by putting his finger to his lips and screaming “Shut your face!” in the direction of the press box. He later revealed the barb had been aimed at a journalist from French sport newspaper L’Equipe, whose criticisms of Nasri’s contribution in France’s three warm-up matches had apparently upset the player’s ailing mother. If Nasri’s explanation elicited any sympathy, his subsequent misdemeanours left him with precious little credit. Implicated in the changing-

room slanging match that erupted after France’s 2-0 loss to Sweden, he saved his worst for last by losing his temper with a reporter as he walked through the mixed zone after the 2-0 loss to Spain. After rudely declining to comment on the game, he snapped when told to “Get lost” by the journalist and launched a tirade of abuse that left seasoned onlookers open-mouthed. “Go fxxx yourself, go fxxx your mother, you son of a bxxxx. You want us to have it out, go fxxx yourself. There, like that you can now write that I am badly brought up,” he said before leaving the mixed zone. The French press were quick to draw comparisons with the incident at the 2010 World Cup that saw Nicolas Anelka excluded from the France squad after insulting coach Raymond Domenech. Nasri had been left out of that tournament by Domenech-ironically over concerns about his behavior after he fell out with senior members of the squad at Euro 2008. “I said to myself: ‘If we (Nasri and Karim Benzema) were not taken (to the World Cup) because we were a disruptive influence, what would have happened if we had been there?’” he remarked in August 2010.

DONETSK: French midfielder Samir Nasri arrives at the airport in Donetsk before flying to Paris. —AFP France coach Laurent Blanc now knows what Nasri brings to major tournaments, and it may not be an experience he wishes to replicate.

Blanc has repeatedly told journalists that the former Arsenal player needs to “do more” for the national team and despite Nasri’s starring role against England, by the time France faced Spain, he had been relegated to the bench. As in France’s three pre-tournament friendlies, Nasri was gradually eclipsed by Franck Ribery and Benzema, his partners in the French forward line. There have been criticisms of his displays in the French media, but nothing to justify the virulence of the outbursts they provoked. “Samir, we just wrote that you didn’t play very well,” said Christophe Dugarry, the player turned television pundit who himself incurred the wrath of the French press during his time in the national side. Nasri finished the 2011-12 campaign with a Premier League winners’ medal around his neck after a successful first season with City, but the club’s huge spending power means he cannot be sure of a starting place next season. Having consistently undermined Blanc’s efforts to repair the damage to France’s image inflicted by the mutineers of 2010, he can no longer contemplate his international future with any certainty either.—AFP

On Zizou, nostalgia and French mediocrity

KIEV: An Ukrainian police officer guards the stadium during the Euro 2012 quarterfinal soccer championship match between England and Italy in Kiev. —AP

Spaniards underline winning credentials DONETSK: Slick Spain showed they are a team who know how to get results against ultra-defensive teams at major championships when they eased past France into the last four of Euro 2012 on Saturday. Backed by a rock-solid defence and controlling possession for long periods, the Spanish were faced with a wall of white French shirts and turned in a typically assured and patient performance to beat Les Bleus for the first time in a competitive game. The 2-0 victory was made all the sweeter by Xabi Alonso’s double in his 100th international and the holders march on to meet Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal in the last four as they seek to become the first nation to win back-to-back continental titles with a World Cup in between. The Spanish players have grown used to teams sitting deep, crowding the midfield and looking to catch them on the break. Cesc Fabregas, operating as a roving forward as he did against Italy in the opening game of the tournament, and playmakers Andres Iniesta, David Silva and Xavi were starved of room to manoeuvre and all had quiet nights. But once Alonso’s 19th-minute header put the world champions in the driving seat it rapidly became clear that dominant Spain were more than capable of protecting their lead against a feeble French side as well as adding to their tally at any moment. They have now kept 11 clean sheets and conceded only three goals in their last 14 European Championship and World Cup matches and have scored in 18 successive competitive games. “We controlled the match even though we knew it wouldn’t be easy against an opponent that was sit-

ting deep but it became easier after the goal,” Alonso said. “It was a big quarter-final match and you have to know how to play them,” the 30-year-old added. “Now we’ll enjoy getting through before thinking about the semi-finals.” Coach Vicente del Bosque underlined the strength in depth in the squad when he brought on striker Fernando Torres and the pacy Pedro to shake things up midway through the second half. Torres was well shackled by the French defenders but Pedro produced a delicious moment of skill to draw a foul from France defender Anthony Reveillere in the penalty area and Alonso calmly stroked the spot-kick into the net. Alonso and fellow holding midfielder Sergio Busquets rarely win the same plaudits or catch the eye or in the same way as Iniesta or Silva. But the way they combined to block off many of France’s forays forward frustrated Les Bleus and Laurent Blanc’s side were limited to just four shots and only one on target, a free kick that Iker Casillas comfortably turned around the post. Sergio Ramos and Gerard Pique, a relatively new pairing in central defence, were equally assured and Ramos’s Real Madrid team mate Karim Benzema barely had a sniff of goal. It remains to be seen whether Portugal use similar tactics for Wednesday’s last-four clash between the Iberian neighbors, also in Donetsk. Whatever the case, Portuguese captain Ronaldo, who plays at Real with Ramos and regularly comes up against Barcelona centre back Pique in La Liga, will almost certainly pose a greater threat than the toothless French.—Reuters

DONETSK: By cruel coincidence, the day upon which France demonstrated its soccer mediocrity by losing to Spain at Euro 2012 also happened to be the 40th birthday of Zinedine Zidane. Ah, Zizou! Even six years after the retirement of the midfielder with the magical feet, it’s impossible not to miss him when his successors look so unworthy, with less collective verve than the son of Algerian immigrants sometimes seemed to have in his big toe. More than any other Frenchman, with the exception perhaps of Michel Platini, Zidane fed the illusion that France is a great soccer power. Has that ever seemed further from the truth than now, after this European Championship where the French tied with a wounded England, lost to Sweden and beat only the tournament co-host, Ukraine? Yes, at the last World Cup. That was when the entire French team humiliated itself and its nation by going on strike, sitting on a bus, curtains drawn, refusing to practice. In a rare moment of lucidity, Raymond Domenech, their then-coach who no one now misses, slammed that group as “a bunch of irresponsible, stupid brats” who became “the laughing stock of the world.” So true. A French optimist - are there any left? - would argue that the good news is that that was the nadir. Collectively punished and then put back piece by piece by Domenech’s classy successor, Laurent Blanc, France does at least now have team. Just not a very good one. It is not a disgrace to lose 2-0 to the world and defending European champion. But in this eastern industrial outpost of European soccer, where the air had a slight chemical whiff in the Donbass Arena that overlooks mines and slag heaps, Blanc brought a team as dangerous as a popgun against a Spanish armada of stars from Barcelona and Real Madrid. While Italian referee Nicola Rizzoli ensured that this was a fair fight, it was never an equal one. Blanc knew the Spanish would be hard to hurt because, in his words, they so rarely share the ball. That clever choreographed selfishness is both a form of attack and defense for the Spanish, because opponents can’t score against them without the ball. So Blanc set up his team to defend and hoped to rush Spain’s goal when rare opportunities presented themselves. The lack of ambition inherent in his plan paid a compliment to Spanish superiority and spoke of French inferiority. It also never really worked. Within 15 minutes, Blanc had fished out of his smart suit trousers the piece of plastic he nibbles to death during a game. Again, one couldn’t help but think that Zidane and Blanc would never have displayed such temerity when they were winning the 1998 World Cup and Euro 2000 together. “You have to be so efficient against Spain, with so little of the ball,” Blanc said. “We tried to spring forward from the back but we weren’t fast enough in getting that first pass out ... And they are also very good.” The Donetsk crowd, likely expecting a thrilling exhibition of “Ole!” soccer, instead entertained itself with chants of “Ukraine! Ukraine!” and by doing the wave. Boris Becker, who used to give tennis crowds a better show when he was winning Wimbledon, was displeased, tweeting that the game was “boring.” In fact, it’s fascinating to see how Spain stifles opponents by starving them of the ball. When Jordi Alba delivered the cross that Xabi Alonso headed in for Spain’s first goal, it seemed like he had all the time in the world. The Spanish so rarely seem harassed. And when they are, goalkeeper Iker Casillas is there with his safe hands, spooning away Yohan Cabaye’s first-half free kick that was headed for the top right hand corner of the Spanish goal. So the Frenchman who most recently scored a competitive goal against Spain remains Zidane, in stoppage time of a 3-1 victory at the 2006 World Cup. Patrick Vieira scored the second French goal that day, before Zizou’s. And Vieira, too, celebrated his 36th birthday on Saturday. But an even more telling statistic is that France’s 2-0 defeat of Ukraine at Euro 2012 was the first time that the French had won a match in the finals of a European Championship without either Michel Platini or Zidane on the team. Astounding. Another way to read that is that without those megastars and the successes their eras brought, we’d think of France as a middling soccer country with delusions of grandeur - a bit like England. In rebuilding the national squad that devoured itself and the stock of goodwill that Zidane’s generation had accrued, Blanc has done good work. At his first press conference as coach in 2010, Blanc said the hard core of players he felt he could lean on was no larger than “a melon’s pip.” It’s perhaps melon-sized now. Striker Karim Benzema is an undeniable talent, even though the Real Madrid star leaves Euro 2012 without having scored. His partnership with winger Franck Ribery will produce goals down the road. But the French defense is full of holes like Swiss cheese. —AP

TV football viewers France fans voted with their remote controls as they lost to Spain with a million less people watching on television than had tuned in for their group match against Sweden, seen by 12.2 million people. That was itself up on only 10.2 million who saw the opening game against England. That game somewhat bizarrely attracted a million more viewers in Germany, admittedly a larger country with a more ingrained footballing culture. Germans meanwhile have been watching avidly - 27.65 million saw them beat Denmark.

Viva Alonso — both of them It’s Alonso-mania in Spain with Xabi scoring twice to beat the French and then Fernando winning the European Grand Prix. Fernando became the first driver this season to win two races and he stands atop the driver rankings while Xabi celebrated his 100th appearance for his country in style as the reigning champions saw off the French. With Spain once again at the forefront of European sport Fernando said: “I am feeling very proud to be Spanish at the moment.”

Passing in the night Portugal defender Joao Pereira and Spanish counterpart Jordi Alba will be like two ships passing in the night as the countries prepare to face one another in the semi-finals. Pereira has only recently joined Valencia whereas Alba is at the same club but seemingly about to head for Barcelona. “I am now with Valencia but he is in line for a move to Barcelona - which proves he is a great player,” said Pereira. If the two likely won’t see much of each other in Valencia they will come face to face on Wednesday with Pereira playing on the right and Alba on the left.

Keane mourns Irish fan Ireland captain and LA Galaxy forward Robbie Keane offered condolences yesterday to the family of Irish football fan James Nolan, who died in Poland after an apparent accidental drowning during Euro 2012. Keane, back with his club after Ireland’s elimination from Euro 2012, raised a Galaxy jersey that read “RIP James Nolan” on the back after scoring in the club’s 3-0 Major League Soccer victory over Vancouver on Saturday. “It was just a gesture because the Irish people are very close and they stick with each other through good times and bad times. He was a big, big soccer fan and it was a shame, so it was just a show of respect really,” Keane said.

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

Black sheep Nasri puts France future in jeopardy Page 19

KIEV: Italy’s Mario Balotelli shoots by England’s Joleon Lescott during the Euro 2012 soccer championship quarterfinal match. (Inset) Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon makes a save during the penalty shootout. — AP

England pay penalty once more Italy advance into Euro 2012 semis KIEV: England’s penalty curse struck again here yesterday as Italy advanced to the semi-finals of Euro 2012 with victory in a shoot-out after a tense quarter-final duel finished 0-0 following extratime. The Italians will face Germany in the semi-finals in Warsaw on Thursday after England’s campaign came to a bitterly familiar end with their sixth defeat in a penalty shoot-out in seven attempts since 1990. Italy clinched a 4-2 penalty shoot-out win after Ashley Young sent his spot-kick against the bar and Italy captain Gianluigi Buffon saved from Ashley Cole to seal England’s fate. The winning penalty was struck by substitute

Alessandro Diamanti to leave England desolate once more at Kiev’s Olympic Stadium. England had taken a 2-1 lead in the shoot-out after Riccardo Montolivo hit his spot-kick wide but Young ceded England’s advantage when he crashed his penalty off the bar. Antonio Nocerino scored to restore Italy’s advantage and when Buffon saved from Cole, Diamanti stepped up to clinch victory. The defeat extended England’s poor record of never having won a knockout game on foreign soil against a top-level football nation. England coach Roy Hodgson said his side had given their all. “We’ve gone out without being

Knockout stage fixtures Knockout stage fixtures at Euro 2012 after Italy became the final team to reach the semi-finals Yesterday Quarter-finals Semi-finals 1 - Czech Republic 0, Portugal 1 Playing on Wednesday, June 27 2 - Germany 4, Greece2 Portugal v Spain, Donetsk 3 - Spain 2, France0 Playing on Thursday, June 28 4 - England 0, Italy 0 Germany v Italy, Warsaw (Italy win 4-2 on penalties)

beaten with our heads held high and making the country proud,” he told BBC television. Skipper Steven Gerrard rued a cruel finish.”I thought this time we would have that bit of luck, but it wasn’t to be,” said Gerrard. “Italy, credit to them, they are a fantastic team,” Gerrard told the BBC. “But we are going home heartbroken.” England could have few complaints after being comprehensively outplayed over the 120 minutes of normal and extra-time, Italy with 35 attempts to England’s 9 while enjoying 64 percent of possession. The tone for a surprisingly open first half had been set after only three minutes, when Daniele De Rossi rattled the woodwork with a thumping shot from 25 yards that had Joe Hart beaten. England responded immediately and squandered a golden chance to take the lead when Glen Johnson’s effort was superbly saved by Buffon. With their confidence lifted England enjoyed their best spell of the match and a curling Johnson cross saw Wayne Rooney’s diving header fly over with the Manchester United striker under pressure from Ignazio Abate. But having soaked up the early English pressure, Italy soon got into their stride with man-ofthe-match Andrea Pirlo springing England’s offside trap to send Mario Balotelli racing clear on 25 minutes. The Manchester City striker took just a fraction

too long, however, and John Terry was able to snuff out the danger. Italy finished the half the stronger of the two sides, Antonio Cassano testing Hart with a long-range effort which was parried wide. Cassano then turned provider when he headed back across goal for Balotelli, only for Joleon Lescott to get a vital touch ahead of his City teammate. Italy’s dominance stretched into the second half, and England continued to live dangerously. De Rossi wasted a chance to put his side ahead when he hooked wide after Claudio Marchisio headed Hart’s punched clearance into the box. Hart then rescued England with a fine double double-save, parrying De Rossi’s long-range effort before blocking Balotelli’s follow-up. Montolivo shot over the bar but England breathed again. Hodgson made a positive double substitution on the hour-mark, bringing on Andy Carroll for Danny Welbeck and replacing James Milner with Theo Walcott. The changes had little effect, however, with England unable to exploit Walcott’s pace, leaving the Arsenal winger a frustrated spectator. Prandelli meanwhile rang the changes for Italy, bringing on Diamanti for Cassano and Nocerino for De Rossi. Diamanti was soon into the action testing Hart with a firm low shot. Nocerino also had a chance to snatch victory two minutes from

Spain looking at options ahead of Portugal match DONETSK: Playing against defending champion Spain at Euro 2012 has got even harder. Portugal, at least, has had an extra 48 hours to try and figure out a way of countering Spain’s different systems of play. Spain has alternated between a traditional attack led by striker Fernando Torres and a six-man midfield fronted by playmaker Cesc Fabregas, with the latter picked to start Saturday’s 2-0 quarterfinal victory over France. Spain returns to the Donbass Arena to play its Iberian neighbors in Wednesday’s European Championship semifinal, where the six-man midfield could well return. Coach Vicente del Bosque has tended to use the system against tougher opponents, deploying it against 2006 world champion Italy in a 1-1 draw in their Group C opener. Spain beat Portugal 1-0 en route to its World Cup win two years ago, and the Portuguese will already have been seeking ways to disrupt Spain’s game. Though lacking sparkle, Spain’s tactics have effectively stifled its opponents and helped maintain the team’s remarkable defensive record. Since coming through the group stage of Euro 2008, Spain has not conceded a goal in the knockout rounds of a major tournament, a run of eight games. For the Portuguese, having an extra two days to recover from their quarterfinals win over the Czech

Republic on Thursday could be a real bonus. “We were very tired by the end of the game and that’s normal,” Del Bosque said. “We need to recover well and this 48 hours extra they have is a little bit of a handicap (for us).” Del Bosque said the change in weather had also fatigued his team, which will be training in the cooler climates of Gdansk in northern Poland before again returning to the heat and humidity of eastern Ukraine tomorrow. Physical trainer Javier Minano said Portugal’s extra time off will give them “a bit of an advantage, but looking at the quarterfinal we had against France, we had an extra day of rest compared to them. So we can’t use it as an excuse.” Spain’s victory kept alive the possibility of a SpainGermany final, something France coach Laurent Blanc sees as the most probable ending to the tournament. The Germans will face either Italy or England in Thursday’s semifinal. “To this point of the Euro there are two teams that have showed they are strongest, that they are the real favorites and that’s Germany and Spain. That’s not so surprising,” Blanc said. “Spain is very difficult to beat. You have to be so efficient against Spain, with so little of the ball. It’s very

STATISTICS Match statistics for Italy’s penalty shootout win against England after their goalless Euro 2012 quarter-final at the Olympic Stadium yesterday:

Goals scored Total shots Shots on target Corners Offsides Fouls committed Yellow cards Red cards Ball possession (percent)

England 0 9 4 3 1 15 0 0 36

Italy 0 35 20 7 2 11 2 0 64

time, latching onto Marchisio’s lovely pass only for Johnson to block. Rooney sent a late overhead kick flying wide before the game went into extra-time. Italy again dominated in extra-time, Diamanti’s curling cross eluding the entire English defence and hitting the post. Then with five minutes remaining Nocerino had the ball in the net from Diamanti’s across only to be correctly ruled off-side. — AFP

No room for sentiment in Loew’s hunt for Euro glory

Spanish midfielder Xabi Alonso difficult for all teams, but Germany is showing it can maybe do better.” Spain beat the Germans 1-0 in the World Cup semifinals, having also beaten them by the same scoreline in the final of Euro 2008, thanks to a goal from Torres. The Chelsea striker has failed to find his best form for the national team since then and, although he has scored two goals in the tournament, a third start seems unlikely. With all opponents changing tactics for Spain, Portugal should be no different. But that doesn’t worry the favorites. “We know Portugal perfectly, it’s going to be a tough game since it’s one step from the final where we want to be,” said Xabi Alonso, who plays with Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo, Pepe and Fabio Coentrao at Real Madrid. — AP

GDANSK: With the Bundesliga producing a conveyor belt of fresh talent and national coach Joachim Loew eager to promote youth, reputations no longer appear to count for much in the Germany team. Loew sprung a considerable surprise for Friday’s Euro 2012 quarter-final when he changed three of his six-strong attack in the 42 demolition of Greece. Despite having won all three Group B games, the mantra “never change a winning team” was ignored in the last eight game as striker Mario Gomez, plus forwards Lukas Podolski and Thomas Mueller were all axed. Miroslav Klose celebrated his 120th cap with his 64th international goal as he took Gomez’s place. “Our bench is very, very strong which makes us stand out,” said the 34-yearold Lazio star. “Anyone can come in and play, which is great for us.” Well, not so great for those who found themselves surplus to requirements. Arsenal-bound Lukas Podolski, a permanent fixture since Euro 2004, was dropped for Bayer Leverkusen’s Andre Schuerrle, who has been his understudy for

the last 12 months. Likewise Mueller, voted best young player at the 2010 World Cup where he finished as top scorer, was over-looked as Borussia Moenchengladbach’s Reus announced himself with silky passes, darting runs and Germany’s fourth goal. “After three wins at Euro 2012, I wasn’t dissatisfied with my team in the slightest, but I had been planning on making the changes to the lineup for a while,” explained Loew after routing the Greeks. “I thought we had to be unpredictable against Greece, because I felt they would be ready for us. “It is good to be cheeky like that from time to time.” Correct, but had the gamble not paid off, Loew would have taken considerable flak from a German press desperate for a first major title in 16 years. Underlying the abandonment of his usual conservative selection policy was Loew’s preference for dynamic youth over experienced maturity and his changes serve to highlight the strength in depth the Germans enjoy. — AFP

Oman’s first Islamic bank fails to elect board: Report Page 22

Greek leadership health-ridden ahead of bailout revision bid Page 23

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

Lexus RX 2013: The power of innovation

Greece aims to stem layoffs, extend recovery: Policy plan Page 24


COLOMBO: Vintage Volkswagen Beetle cars are parked in Colombo yesterday during Volkswagen Day celebrations in Sri Lanka. Volkswagen owners hold an annual pageant in Sri Lanka to show off their vintage cars. — AFP

Budget deficit unlikely over Kuwait oil price drop Kuwait crude slides on demand drop, global economic crisis By Velina Nacheva KUWAIT: The most recent slump in oil prices tied to the global anemic economic cycle and a slump in demand has raised concerns of a possible budget deficit in Kuwait, an argument that a Kuwait oil analyst strongly refutes. The steady slide of the Kuwaiti crude oil prices to below $90 per barrel, which is the lowest in 2012, coincides with the dramatic decline of oil prices globally - a decline that, Kamal

Al-Harami, Kuwait oil analyst, says will not be sustainable. “At the moment, we still have a surplus of cash for the months of April, May and half of June. So far, we are in the green,” he told the Kuwait Times yesterday. “If the decline in oil prices lasts for another two months, then we are going to have a breakeven budget. Only after the third or fourth month are we going to have a deficit,” he said. Al-Harami does not forecast oil prices to fall further in the coming

few months arguing that Saudi Arabia is determined to keep a $90 to $100 price range. “ To them, anything below $90 a barrel is a red line. They will stop the decline of oil prices for a sustainable period.” Al-Harami predicts a growth of oil prices globally, relating his prediction to the impact of the Iranian boycott starting July 1. The analyst further refuted reports that Kuwait, the fourth-largest OPEC producer, might undergo an oil production cut. “Saudi Arabia is the one

that is going to cut its production. They will do it for a month or a month and a half, when the prices consistently go below $90 a barrel.” He concluded, “At the moment we should not be worried. We have too much money anyway. Even when we get cash, we spend it on silly things like salary increases and services.” According to a report compiled by Kuwait-based Al-Shall Economic Consulting Company, “during last May, Kuwait produced three million barrels per day according to one

Cameron proposes axing youth housing subsidy LONDON: British Prime Minister David Cameron yesterday proposed scrapping rent subsidies for Britons under 25, in a newspaper interview likely to strain his Conservative Party’s coalition with the Liberal Democrats for the second time in a week. Requiring almost 400,000 low-paid and unemployed young Britons to live with their parents if they cannot afford market rents could save just under 2 billion pounds ($3.1 billion) a year, Cameron said in an interview with the Mail yesterday. Asked about the proposal in a BBC interview, Lib Dem Deputy Finance Minister Danny Alexander said the coalition had already implemented major welfare reforms - including cuts to housing benefit - and that these should be allowed to bed down first. Separately, the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, leader of more than 80 million Anglicans worldwide and a long-standing critic, accused Cameron of “aspirational waffle designed to conceal a deeply damaging withdrawal of the state from its responsibilities to the most vulnerable”. The Conservatives and the centre-left Liberal Democrats formed a coalition in May 2010, and have regular public disagreements, though weak ratings for both parties limit any incentive to end the coalition before elections must be held in 2015. A YouGov opinion poll released on Sunday for the Sunday Times showed support for the opposition Labour Party at 43 percent, the Conservatives on 34 percent and the Lib Dems on 9 percent. Earlier last week, Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg opposed plans from Michael Gove, the education minister, to reintroduce separate exams for able and less able pupils at the age of 16. Such exams were phased out in 1986, partly because they were viewed as reinforcing social divisions. While Cameron said there would be exemptions to any ban on housing benefits for under-25s in special cases - such as for those suffering from domestic violence - he argued that the current benefits system reduced incentives for people to work. “The system currently sends the signal you are better off not working, or working less. It encourages people not to work and have children, but we should help people to work and have children,” he was quoted as saying. Britain’s unemployment rate stands at 8.2 percent - relatively low given the depth of its economic slump after the financial crisis - but for those aged 18-24 it is 19.9 percent. The Mail on Sunday said Cameron also favoured forced community work for 5,000-10,000 people unemployed for more than 2 years who were deemed to be work-shy and unwilling to take part in training programs. Cameron will announce further details of his plans in a speech yesterday. One of Cameron’s main themes in the 2010 election campaign was the “Big Society,” which aimed to encourage voluntary community work. It was this that the Archbishop of Canterbury decried as “aspirational waffle” in book extracts published yesterday by the Observer. —Reuters

source and about 2.858 million barrels per day according to another. Kuwait consumes about 300,000 barrels per day; thus only 2.7 million barrels per day (or 2.558 million barrels per day in the second case) are exported, this operation can be used as an index.” The report also warned that the production cut may cause a budget deficit in Kuwait and several other countries. “This means that there are between 780,000 barrels per day and 638,000 barrels per day provisional

surplus, but they prevent the occurrence of actual budget deficit.” The report read,” If Kuwait complies with its prescribed quota, as decided in OPEC’s latest meeting (2.220 million barrels per day), its exports will drop to 1.92 million barrels per day at a value of KD 18.1 billion per annum (at a price of $92.38 per barrel on 20/06/2012 and exchange rate of 279 fils per dollar) with a budget deficit by KD 4.6 billion. But the deficit will not be realized because of increased production and price fluctuations.”

Egypt up from 5-month low; Gulf stocks down MIDEAST STOCK MARKETS

SAN FRANCISCO: Oracle CEO Larry Ellison introducing Oracle’s cloud computing during the Oracle OpenWorld 2011 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. The Internet “cloud” has become the hottest topic in computing, but the trend has created a new range of security issues that need to be addressed. — AFP (See Page 27)

Iranian oil tankers change names as EU ban looms DUBAI: Iran has given new English names and changed the flags of many of its oil tankers, two of which are steaming towards Europe with an European Union ban on Iranian oil imports just a week away, ship tracking data shows. The Haraz is now Freedom, Nesa has transformed into Truth, and Sima has become Blossom. At least a third of oil tanker operator National Iranian Tanker Company’s (NITC) ships have registered with the pacific atolls of Tuvalu and also Tanzania after dropping their Maltese and Cypriot flags. NITC is not subject to UN sanctions, but with Malta and Cyprus coming under increased EU pressure to stop flagging Iranian government-linked ships, NITC has hoisted flags from Tuvalu on at least 11 of its 39 oil tankers, while Tanzanian flags fly above at least two.

Merchant ships need a flag from national ship registries to gain access to most of the world’s ports. According to ship tracking data on Reuters, two of the tankers, now called Pioneer and Elite, were heading through the Red Sea towards Europe yesterday, where a ban on buying Iranian oil comes into effect on July 1. NITC declined to comment. UNsanctioned sister company the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines frequently changes the names of its cargo vessels in an attempt to conceal their connection to IRISL, which Washington and the EU suspect helps transport military equipment for Iran. Only three of the 15 NITC vessels whose onboard ship position transmitters are showing as switched on have not changed their names yet, according to the Reuters Freight Fundamentals Database. — Reuters

CAIRO/DUBAI: Egypt’s bourse rallied ahead of presidential election results, while Gulf markets slipped as investors cut risk amid weak global cues. Cairo’s main index rose 3.3 percent, up from Thursday’s five-month low, as institutional investors bet the country will enter a period of relative stability once the winner takes office. The index had lost almost 10 percent of its value since the president run-off vote took place on June 16 and 17. “It is the first day that funds and big investors have entered the market,” said Hisham Metwalli of Arab Finance Brokerage. “Rumors of Shafik being ahead and that the security situation is under control have pushed the market up,” he added. In Saudi Arabia, the market saw strong demand for the market debut of Alinma Tokio Marine. The stock rose as high as 100 riyals in early trade before closing at 76 riyals, up from its initial offer price of 10 riyals. A total of 14.9 million shares changed hands. The kingdom’s index lost 0.4 percent however, as investors cut risk amid the weak global backdrop. Daily volumes fell to their lowest in 11 days. “There is little money in the market and people don’t want to buy in the summer and with Ramadan coming up,” said Tarek Al Mady, an independent financial analyst based in Riyadh. Caution is widespread on the global front as investors worry that Europe’s debt crisis is adding to the slowdown in global economic growth, especially after a spate of data on Thursday showing weakness in global manufacturing. Elsewhere, markets in the UAE and Qatar ended lower in muted trade, in line with the regional trend. “Nothing has changed from last week and given the negative global backdrop, investors are likely to remain

cautious,” said Amer Khan, fund manager at Shuaa Asset Management in Dubai. Dubai’s index dipped 0.7 percent, trimming year-to-date gains to 7.9 percent. In Abu Dhabi, the benchmark finished 1.1 percent lower, halting a fourday winning streak. In Qatar, the exchange declined 0.3 percent to its lowest close since Oct 5, with muted activity as investors continued to look at opportunities elsewhere in the region. The index extended yearto-date losses to 6.3 percent, the worst performing Gulf market. Elsewhere, Kuwait’s index fell 1.2 percent to a 20-week low as the country’s political conflict showed no signs of abating, with some parliament members demanding constitutional amendments that would give the assembly greater power. “Constitutional amendments reaching to a full parliamentary system have become an inescapable necessity in order to prevent the authorities from meddling in the will of the nation,” said the MPs’ statement, reported by local media on Friday. In Oman, Bank Nizwa slipped below its IPO price intraday as the Islamic lender failed to pick a board at a constitutive general meeting. The stock dropped 1 percent, its seventh decline in the 11 sessions since listing, before rallying to its original offer price. “There is a big amount of uncertainty among institutions their CGM did not happen as scheduled. That was a big blow,” said Harikumar Varma, assistant vice-president of asset management at Gulf Baader Capital Markets. This could delay the operations of the bank, which were scheduled to start in July, he added. The bank is not yet included in Muscat’s benchmark index, which eased 0.2 percent. —Reuters


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


Oman’s first Islamic bank fails to elect board: Report

China, India and Brazil economies slow down By Hayder Tawfik hould we worry about Europe or the economic slowdown in China, India and Brazil? The latest economic data for those countries are not bad but at the same time are not encouraging either. The Chinese government acted quickly by lowering interest rates. I am sure they will try as usual to engineer another economic boom. My concern goes beyond that. All the key indicators of money supply in those countries are flashing warning signs. Added to these, is the slump in the housing market. The European economic crisis is not helping either. If money supply keeps shrinking, this may lead to deflation taking hold on the economy. Already, there are signs of deflation in some parts of economy. Because China is not an open economy, it will be difficult for outsiders to get a true picture of the severity of the crisis. The majority of the big banks in China are state owned and are run by politburo members. Some state owned industries such as utilities, railways and constructions have been experiencing real slump. This kind of big slow down happened in Japan in the early 90’s, when Japan was going through huge economic boom lead by the construction industry and financed by very cheap credit. Japan is still suffering from the bust which followed the boom and let deflation take hold on the economy. All this created “Deflation” and this is what we should


worry about. When consumer prices, investment costs and export prices start falling at the same time in the second biggest export lead economy in the world, then we indeed should worry. The rest of the world should be fully alerted to this and should take drastic measures to prevent their own economies from importing deflation. Europe and to lesser extent USA should equip themselves as the lenders of the last resort and make sure that their economies do not suffer from default. I do not see these events unravelling but the risks are there and should not be ignored. China and India have become very competitive and now are moving up the scale, which is a big challenge for manufacturers in US and Europe. If it becomes more challenging then they could experience collapse in prices with a big deflationary impact for consumers. Some industries such electrical, electronic and the auto industry are complaining about overproduction and price weakness. Again it brings back the memory of the Japanese boom and bust story. These problems are not yet severe to worry about but they do need immediate attention. World leaders from the G20 should act together with strong determination and put measures in place to prevent a worldwide deflation which started started in China. Hayder Tawfik is Executive Vice President of Asset Management, at Dimah Capital

Tokio Marine affiliate soars in Saudi debut DUBAI: Shares in an affiliate of Japanese insurance giant Tokio Marine & Nichido Fire Insurance Co soared as they listed on the Saudi Arabian stock market yesterday, showing strong demand for fresh equity among Saudi investors despite the global market slump. Alinma Tokio Marine traded as high as 100 riyals, a tenfold increase from its initial public offer price of 10 riyals. It was at 76 riyals after an hour of trading, with 5.5 million shares having changed hands in hectic trade. Many Saudi stocks more than double on listing, because IPO shares are traditionally sold at cheap valuations by international standards. The government encourages IPOs as a way of distributing corporate wealth to its citizens. Alinma Tokio Marine’s jump was large even by Saudi standards, however. Even though the overall Saudi stock market has been hit by the global slump - the local index is down 15 percent from this year’s peak - many investors remain cashrich because of the booming Saudi economy and are eager for new investment

opportunities, analysts said. “We will see the price supported for the first few days, and then there will be some selling pressure” as short-term investors take profits, said Tarek Al Mady, an independent financial analyst in Riyadh. Alinma Tokio Marine was seen as particularly attractive because, as an insurance stock, it is focused on Saudi Arabia’s domestic economy rather than the shaky global economy. The company plans to develop Islamic insurance or takaful products for both retail and corporate customers; they will be sold through the national branch network of Alinma Bank, a co-founder of the firm. Islamic insurance has been expanding rapidly in the Gulf although growth has slowed in recent years. The growth of takaful contributions in Saudi Arabia, which accounts for about half of the global total, slowed to 12 percent in 2010, the most recent year for which data is available, from a compound annual growth rate of 38 percent during 2005-2009, a report by consultants Ernst & Young said in April. — Reuters

Bank Nizawa raised $156m from Muscat IPO DUBAI: Oman’s Bank Nizwa, a newly-formed Islamic lender which sold shares to the public in June, failed to elect a new board after it was unable to get the required quorum at a general meeting last week, three sources familiar with the matter said. Bank Nizwa, the sultanate’s first Islamic bank, attracted 681 million rials ($1.77 billion) of bids in its initial public offering, 11 times the sum it planned to raise, signalling strong interest from investors. The lender held a Constitutive General Meeting on June 21 to elect its board of directors and approve the bank’s articles of association and memorandum of understanding. Votes representing 75 percent of the bank’s capital were required to proceed with the meeting but only 62 percent of the voting

rights could be arranged, the sources said. “This is a big blow for the bank. They needed the approval to go ahead and appoint a board and a sharia committee. Now they have to wait for the next meeting to get approval,” one banking source said. The failure to elect a board delays the start of banking operations and casts a pall over another upcoming Islamic bank IPO. Shariacompliant lender Al Izz International Bank has been expected to issue an IPO of 40 percent of its 100 million rials capital by June this year. Bank Nizwa was not immediately available for comment. Calls to the bank’s legal advisor were not answered. The lender raised 60 million rials ($155.9 million) in the 40-percent IPO. Its shares surged 13 percent on its first day of trading on June 10 but the early gains waned

and the stock has returned to its 102 baisas offering price. While neighboring Gulf states have ramped up Islamic finance services in recent years, Oman stood out by refusing to participate in the industry. The central bank reversed that stance last year, partly to prevent the outflow of Islamic funds. Bank Nizwa was the first IPO this year in Oman. The country’s market regulator has said it expected three to four new listings in 2012. Oman Arab Bank, the banking arm of Oman International Development and Investment Co (Ominvest), has delayed its initial public offering until September, Oman News Agency said earlier this month. Bank Nizwa shares were flat at 102 baisas on the Muscat bourse yesterday, after dropping to 100 baisas earlier in the session. — Reuters

Dubai’s Daman sells 22.7% stake, near to IPO

NEW YORK: Headquarters of Goldman Sachs in lower Manhattan New York. Ratings agency Moody’s decided after stocks closed in New York, to cut the credit ratings of 15 of the biggest names in banking, including Goldman Sachs, Barclays, Citigroup, HSBC, Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan and Morgan Stanley. Moody’s said the banks were exposed to the roiling financial crisis and to each other. — AFP

Depa, German JV’s $245m Doha airport contract terminated access for being unable to start its interior contracting work as planned and to meet the original completion date. Officials at the new Doha airport were not immediately available for comment. The new airport is slated to open in December. The facility is being opened in three phases to be completed by 2015 and have the capacity to handle 50 million passengers. The termination came days after the new airport revoked Lindner Depa’s contract performance bond and advance payment guarantee, worth 117 million dirhams. Depa shares were untraded on the Nasdaq Dubai bourse on Sunday. The stock closed at 0.43 dirhams on Thursday. — Reuters

DUBAI: Lindner Depa, an interior fitting joint venture between Dubai-based Depa Ltd and Germany’s Lindner AG, has had a 900-million dirhams ($245.03 million) contract to fit out the new Doha International Airport terminated, Depa said yesterday. The contract to fit out the 17 lounges at the new $15.5 billion airport was the largest project in the Nasdaq Dubai-listed firm’s backlog. Depa, which said it was discussing options with its lawyers, said the contract was pulled after Lindner Depa’s “refusal to accept new and nonfavorable contract terms and conditions ... after being denied full access to the project site to perform its contract scope of work.” The company blamed the lack of

DUBAI: Daman Investments, the Dubai-based investment management company, sold a 22.7 percent stake through a private placement which values the firm at 440 million dirhams ($119.8 million) and said it eventually plans to offer shares to the public. Daman, which is active in asset management, raised 100 million dirhams from the sale, by offering 588,235 new shares at 170 dirhams each, the company said in a statement yesterday. No details were given on who bought into the offering. The sale was part of the firm’s strategy to broaden its shareholder base before an eventual initial public offering in the United Arab Emirates. “The accomplishment of a successful IPO to be listed on one of the markets in the UAE is the clear and focused objective of Daman’s medium-term strategy,” Shehab Gargash, chief executive of Daman Investments, said. In 2009, Daman said it had attracted a strategic investor who committed to invest 100 million dirhams in the company, and was moving ahead to secure additional equity investment of about 200 million dirhams. But that fundraising valued Daman at about 850 million dirhams, nearly double the current valuation, signalling the extent to which investment firms in the UAE have suffered post the global financial crisis. Dubai’s benchmark index has fallen 76.9 percent since its 2008 peak, while Abu Dhabi’s exchange has dropped 51.9 percent in the same time frame. IPO activity in the UAE has also been scarce since the global financial crisis, with market volatility and a reluctance among retail investors, burnt by the collapse in stock prices from their pre-crisis peak, being cited as the main the reasons for the lack of new public offerings. The last listing on the Dubai benchmark was Drake & Scull in March 2009, while the Abu Dhabi index has only seen a couple of minor sales since 2008 - the largest being Eshraq Properties’ 55 percent offering in May 2011, which raised 825 million dirhams. — Reuters

EXCHANGE RATES Commercial Bank of Kuwait US Dollar/KD GB Pound/KD Euro Swiss francs Canadian Dollar Australian DLR Indian rupees Sri Lanka Rupee UAE dirhams Bahraini dinars Jordanian dinar Saudi riyals Omani riyals Philippine peso Egyptian pounds

.2730000 .4340000 .3490000 .2910000 .2710000 .2790000 .0040000 .0020000 .0759050 .7395200 .3830000 .0710000 .7249670 .0040000 .0430000

CUSTOMER TRANSFER RATES US Dollar/KD .2796000 GB Pound/KD .4358270 Euro .3515130 Swiss francs .2927290 Canadian dollars .2729540 Danish Kroner .0473030 Swedish Kroner .0398870 Australian dlr .2814170 Hong Kong dlr .0360300 Singapore dlr .2188140 Japanese yen .0034770 Indian Rs/KD .0000000 Sri Lanka rupee .0000000 Pakistan rupee .0000000 Bangladesh taka .0000000 UAE dirhams .0761540 Bahraini dinars .7419400 Jordanian dinar .0000000 Saudi Riyal/KD .0745800 Omani riyals .7265170 Philippine Peso .0000000

Al-Muzaini Exchange Co. ASIAN COUNTRIES

Japanese Yen Indian Rupees Pakistani Rupees Srilankan Rupees Nepali Rupees Singapore Dollar Hongkong Dollar Bangladesh Taka Philippine Peso Thai Baht Malaysian Ringgit

3.553 5.072 3.053 2.141 3.173 220.090 36.173 3.425 6.439 8.876 89.338

.2830000 .4440000 .3570000 .3000000 .2800000 .2880000 .0070000 .0035000 .0766680 .7469520 .4010000 .0770000 .7322530 .0072000 .0500000 .2817000 .4391000 .3541530 .2949270 .2750040 .0476590 .0401870 .2835310 .0363010 .2204570 .0035030 .0049580 .0021230 .0029940 .0034610 .0767260 .7475120 .3984440 .0751400 .7319730 .0066860

Saudi Riyal Qatari Riyal Omani Riyal Bahraini Dinar UAE Dirham

GCC COUNTRIES 74.883 77.158 729.380 745.850 76.464

ARAB COUNTRIES Egyptian Pound - Cash 48.250 Egyptian Pound 46.466 Yemen Riyal/for 1000 1.309 Tunisian Dinar 176.65 Jordanian Dinar 396.190 Lebanese Lira/for 1000 1.884 Syrian Lier 4.899 Morocco Dirham 32.64 EUROPEAN & AMERICAN COUNTRIES US Dollar Transfer 280.700 Euro 354.52 Sterling Pound 441.820 Canadian dollar 274.79 Turkish lire 152.400 Swiss Franc 295.01 US Dollar Buying 279.500 GOLD 293.000 148.000 75.250

20 Gram 10 Gram 5 Gram

Australian dollar Bahraini dinar Bangladeshi taka Canadian dollar Cyprus pound Czek koruna Danish krone Deutsche Mark Egyptian pound Euro Cash Hongkong dollar Indian rupees Indonesia Iranian tuman Iraqi dinar Japanese yen Jordanian dinar Lebanese pound Malaysian ringgit Morocco dirham Nepalese Rupees New Zealand dollar Nigeria


285.800 745.580 3.660 277.300 550.600 45.700 48.400 167.800 48.040 356.500 36.830 5.200 0.032 0.160 0.235 3.650 397.300 0.190 91.680 44.300 4.310 225.400 1.816

48.200 728.220 3.130 6.820 77.550 74.850 221.380 36.210 2.671 440.700 41.100 296.900 4.300 9.240 198.263 76.440 280.700 1.350

10 Tola

GOLD 1,655.410

Sterling Pound US Dollar

728.040 2.980 6.610 77.120 74.850 221.380 36.210 2.110 438.700 296.400 4.300 9.020 76.340 280.300



TRAVELLER’S CHEQUE 438.700 280.300


284.300 746.580 3.425 275.800

221.400 46.310 355.000 36.680 5.930 0.030


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

283.26 277.39 298.34 355.83 280.25 438.67 3.61 3.428 5.027 2.127 3.155 2.978 76.37 746.22 46.37 399.27 729.38 77.39 74.94


283.00 277.00 295.00 356.00 281.50 438.00 3.65 3.550 5.200 2.400 3.700 3.200 77.00 746.00 47.75 397.50 732.50 77.75 75.25

Dollarco Exchange Co. Ltd 397.200 0.189 91.680 3.100 223.900

Rate for Transfer

US Dollar Canadian Dollar Sterling Pound Euro

Selling Rate

280.000 278.235 441.295 355.410

Swiss Frank Bahrain Dinar UAE Dirhams Qatari Riyals Saudi Riyals Jordanian Dinar Egyptian Pound Sri Lankan Rupees Indian Rupees Pakistani Rupees Bangladesh Taka Philippines Pesso Cyprus pound Japanese Yen Thai Bhat Syrian Pound Nepalese Rupees Malaysian Ringgit

295.990 741.285 76.210 76.855 74.625 394.140 46.352 2.110 5.011 2.987 3.422 6.640 686.835 4.545 8.980 5.895 3.220 88.355

Kuwait Bahrain Intl Exchange Co.

UAE Exchange Centre WLL

Bahrain Exchange Company COUNTRY

Norwegian krone Omani Riyal Pakistani rupees Philippine peso Qatari riyal Saudi riyal Singapore dollar South Africa Sri Lankan rupees Sterling pound Swedish krona Swiss franc Syrian pound Thai bhat Tunisian dollar UAE dirham U.S. dollars Yemeni Riyal

Rate per 1000 (Tran)

US Dollar Pak Rupees Indian Rupees Sri Lankan Rupees Bangladesh Taka Philippines Peso UAE Dirhams Saudi Riyals Bahraini Dinars Egyptian Pounds Pound Sterling Indonesian Rupiah Yemeni Riyal Euro Canadian Dollars Nepali rupee

280.000 2.980 5.019 2.115 3.419 6.685 76.335 74.820 744.400 46.272 448.800 2.990 1.550 360.600 280.500 3.190

Al Mulla Exchange Currency

Transfer Rate (Per 1000)

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

280.600 355.350 439.200 276.050 3.550 4.930 46.350 2.106 3.415 6.597 2.973 746.600 76.400 74.800

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


World presses EU summit for lasting remedy to sickly euro BRUSSELS: Europe’s leaders gather for a mother-of-all-summits this week under intense global pressure to head off a potentially catastrophic economic collapse. Months ago already, European Union president Herman Van Rompuy said in off-the-cuff remarks that the euro-zone stood “back to the wall”, “at the edge of a cliff”, “with a knife at its throat”. That was before the relentless two-year sovereign debt crisis wrecking much of Europe hit the unthinkableinfecting Spain, the euro-zone’s fourthlargest economy, and threatening Italy, its third-largest, after earlier rescues of Greece, Ireland and Portugal. “An unwinding of the euro-zone... would be the defining crisis of the entire century. It would be catastrophe,” Yves Tiberghien, of the University of British Columbia, said after this week’s G20 talks in Mexico. “They created this great experiment,” he said of the 10year-old single currency shared by 17 vastly disparate nations. “It was very daring but we know

now it’s incomplete, it’s very dangerous, it doesn’t work, it’s not functional to do monetary union without banking union and fiscal union and therefore higher political integration.” At the summit-to be held Thursday and Friday in Brussels-the slight and canny Van Rompuy, a former Belgian premier, will attempt to take the euro-zone up that road. “I will propose building blocks for deepening our economic and monetary union so that we can show to the rest of the world and to the markets that the euro and the euro-zone is an irreversible project,” he told G20 leaders. The EU’s first moves would be to kickstart growth and integrate Europe’s banking sector, he said. At talks between the euro-zone’s Big Four in Rome last Friday, leaders of Germany, France, Italy and Spain agreed to inject up to 130 billion euros ($163 billion) — one percent of European gross domestic product-into giant infrastructure projects able to provide jobs at a time when one in four young people are unemployed in some

nations. The lesson of the crisis, said German Chancellor Angela Merkel, was “more Europe, not less Europe”. “We need to work closer together politically, especially in the euro-zone. Whoever has a common currency must also have coherent policies. That is also a lesson from the last two years,” she said. Powerhouse Germany favors common taxation and budget policieswhich would require treaty change-but is reluctant to share debt, unlike its traditional core EU partner France, which favors creating eurobonds. At the Brussels summit, the first of Van Rompuy’s “building blocks” is expected to be a proposal for a banking union, should he clinch a tough-to-reach compromise over the role of the European Central Bank. “Banking union is a fundamental element,” he told German paper Welt am Sonntag, in an interview published yesterday. “I think we can move forward there more quickly than in other areas.” Banking union would be a first step in a long-term-perhaps decade-long

roadmap to political union to be outlined to EU leaders by Van Rompuy, with dates and institutional problems such as treaty change set out by year’s end. EU diplomats said Van Rompuy had been asked to ready a detailed proposal for October, or possibly December. But a move towards Europe-wide guarantees on deposits and a central authority to close bad banks would both boost confidence and ease the flow of cash. “Out of the chaos are emerging ideas,” said a senior EU diplomat. “It will be a political union at the end of the day.” In a reminder that this week’s gettogether will be of special importance, US President Barack Obama said last week: “I am confident that over the next several weeks, Europe will paint a picture of where we need to go.” Adding to the pressure, International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde said Friday that “a determined and forceful move towards a complete European monetary union

should be reaffirmed in order to restore faith in the system.” In the meantime, the IMF is leaning on a reluctant Merkel to allow the eurozone’s rescue fund, the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF), to lend directly to Spain’s distressed banks, rather than to the government. This is in order to break a so-called “feedback loop”, where sovereigns face mounting borrowing costs when forced to help their own banks, leading to a vicious circle of mounting debt weighing on all institutions. Spain will formally request a eurozone loan for its banks today. And the “men in black” inspectors from the IMF, ECB and European Commission return to Athens today to check the state of play on reforms pledged in exchange for a 130-billion-euro loan. The new coalition government formed last week, backed by conservative, socialist and moderate leftist parties, wants the austerity-heavy terms of Greece’s bailout tweaked to kickstart growth. — AFP

Greek leadership health-ridden ahead of bailout revision bid Troika of creditors may postpone review

DILI: East Timorese arrive at the Dili market to buy their daily needs yesterday. —AFP

Greece breached bailout rules with staff hirings ATHENS: Greece breached the rules of its EU-IMF loan agreement by taking on some 70,000 public sector staff in two years, undermining efforts to reduce the state payroll, a report said yesterday. To Vima weekly said the hirings in 2010 and 2011 were highest in local administration, health, the police and culture, where the number of employees actually increased. It cited a report from a permanent mission to Athens of the so-called ‘troika’ of international creditors, the EU, IMF and the European Central Bank, and data given by outgoing finance minister George Zannias. An unidentified troika official told the daily: “While they legislated rules to reduce the number of civil servants, they were bringing people in through the window.” The official added that over 12,000 people were hired by local councils even as a cost-cutting initiative merging municipalities was underway. Zannias’ report to the new government coalition after June 17 elections allegedly reveals that although over 53,000 civil servants retired in 2010, the overall number of state staff was almost steady at 692,000 people, To Vima said. In this case, most of the vacancies

were filled immediately, the daily said. Similarly, although another 40,000 staff left in 2011, the net reduction on the payroll was only 24,000. By this time, Greece had promised to only hire one civil servant for every five that left. But over 16,000 people were hired instead of the allowed 8,000, To Vima said. The report came ahead of an expected EUIMF audit starting today. Structural reforms pledged in return for billions of euros in EU-IMF loans were suspended in April as the country held two elections in six weeks, with the first on May 6 failing to produce a workable government. The new government, built around the conservatives and backed by socialists and moderate leftists, on Saturday said it wanted to freeze further civil service layoffs and bargain for a twoyear extension to its tough fiscal adjustment. The aim would be to meet fiscal goals “without further cuts to salaries, pensions and public investment” and new taxes, a government policy plan said. There have been indications that a target extension can be considered, but euro-zone hardliners such as Germany and Austria are unlikely to accept a watering-down of Greek commitments without a fight. — AFP

Cypriot economic trouble rooted in Greek woes ATHENS: Cyprus President Demetris Christofias yesterday blamed the island’s economic troubles on neighboring Greece’s woes and insisted that reforms by his government would check a growing public deficit. “The economy of Cyprus continues to have healthy foundations despite the problems, distortions and inequalities accumulated over the years,” the Communist politician told To Vima weekly in an interview. Cyprus takes over the European Union’s rotating presidency on July 1. Estimates are that it needs around 4.0 billion euros to prop up its banks and help narrow the budget deficit, which widened last year to double the EU ceiling of three percent of gross domestic product (GDP). “Cyprus is not facing the prospect of entering (a rescue) mechanism because of the fiscal state of the economy but because of the need to recapitalize Cypriot banks which have important exposure to the Greek economy,”

Christofias said. “In every downgrade of the Cypriot economy the exposure of our banks to Greece is portrayed as the main cause,” he said. Christofias said reforms already undertaken would bring the deficit to “around 3.0 percent” from 6.5 percent in 2011, with the aim of trimming it further to “as close to 2.5 percent as possible.” Cyprus will ask Russia for a loan of up to 5.0 billion euros ($6.4 billion) this week and then request aid from eurozone partners for its ailing banks, an EU diplomat said Wednesday. The crisis-hit Mediterranean island will “first try to get a bilateral loan from Russia,” said the diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity. Cyprus would then probably request euro-zone aid for its banks next week along the lines of an offer made to Spain, he said. The government is already committed to underwriting a 1.8 billion euro capital issue for the island’s worst exposed institution-Marfin Popular Bank to recapitalize against the Greek debt crisis. —AFP

ATHENS: Greece’s new prime minister and finance minister will for health reasons both miss a key EU summit where they were to launch efforts to renegotiate the terms of an unpopular austerity-centred bailout. Prime Minister Antonis Samaras was told to avoid travel after undergoing major eye surgery, the government said yesterday, meaning that Greece will be represented at the summit by Foreign Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos. Incoming Finance Minister Vassilis Rapanos, who has yet to take his oath of office, is currently also in hospital after being admitted with strong stomach pains on Friday. Neither Samaras nor Rapanos are due to be discharged from hospital until today, and the latter is likely to be kept until tomorrow. Experts from Greece’s so-called “troika” of creditors-the EU, IMF and European Central Bank-will postpone an audit of the country’s finances originally scheduled to start today, and vital for the release of loan funds. “There is a delay, the exact date of the (auditors’) arrival will be set in the coming days,” a government source told AFP. The PM’s surgeon Panagiotis Theodosiadis said Samaras would take “days and weeks” to fully recover from a 3.5-hour surgery on Saturday to remedy 11 cracks found in his

retina. He is expected to stay at home for at least a week. But the coalition government under Samaras that emerged from June 17 elections already has a mountain to climb and no time to lose. State coffers are almost empty, with reserves set to last until late July. Structural reforms pledged in return for billions of euros in EU-IMF loans were suspended as the country held two elections in six weeks, with the first on May 6 failing to produce a workable government. As a result, the creditors keeping Greece alive-the EU, IMF and the European Central Bank-lack a clear image of where the country stands, and no new funds can be released until this is clarified. The exception is a onebillion-euro instalment left over from before the elections, which is expected to be released by the end of June. But it is too small a sum to make a difference. Greece needs 7.6 billion euros ($9.5 billion) just by the end of July to cover maturing debt and the state’s tax takings are short of target. Greek banks are also in poor shape despite a recent recapitalization to cushion the effects of a major sovereign debt rollover. Greek newspaper To Vima yesterday said Athens breached the rules of its EU-IMF loan agreement by taking on some 70,000 public sector staff in two years, undermining efforts

to reduce the state payroll. The weekly added that a bill tabled in May to evaluate civil servants and axe nearly 2,000 ministry posts was never passed into law. In his election campaign, Samaras had pledged to redress “injustices” in the austerity-centred bailout deal which most Greeks consider to have exacerbated the recession and killed off any demand left in the economy. The new government, built around the conservatives and backed by socialists and moderate leftists, on Saturday said it wanted to freeze further civil service layoffs and bargain for a two-year extension to its tough fiscal adjustment. The aim would be to meet fiscal goals “without further cuts to salaries, pensions and public investment” and new taxes, a government policy plan said. There have been indications that a target extension can be considered, but euro-zone hardliners such as Germany and Austria are unlikely to accept a watering-down of Greek commitments without a fight. Another Greek newspaper, Kathimerini, on Sunday said creditors are unlikely to accept the new government’s request to reverse a minimum wage cut and recent labour reforms to facilitate layoffs. “The troika is displeased with the content of the three-party policy plan,” the daily said. —AFP

PDVSA turns to traders to sustain Ecuador oil deal CARACAS: Venezuelan state oil giant PDVSA has had to buy dozens of extra fuel cargoes from countries as far away as Estonia and Saudi Arabia to keep up its side of a 2008 oil supply deal with leftist ally Ecuador, according to traders and sales documents. In an examination of shipping data that highlights the practical risks of political trade deals, Reuters found that half the fuel Venezuela sent to Ecuador, which cannot process its own heavy crude, came from third countries, often via trading companies including Glencore. What was meant to be an example of cooperation between ideologically aligned states, with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez importing Ecuadorean crude in return for refined fuel, has instead become another sign of problems in PDVSA’s refining network and a profitable niche for foreign traders. It is also the latest indication of difficulties for PDVSA, one of the world’s biggest oil companies and the cash cow of Chavez’s “21st century” socialism. In an election year in Venezuela, PDVSA’s finances are under growing pressure as Chavez digs deep into its coffers to fund welfare programs. The shipments to Ecuador were corroborated by some traders

involved in the deals - and show that the system appeared to stumble after its first year. So Venezuela turned to third countries and traders, often derided by Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa as speculators, for many of the supplies. Sources said Venezuela paid the transport costs for bringing cargoes from countries that also included Britain, France, the Netherlands and Colombia. “PDVSA has made deals but then doesn’t have the agreed products, whether due to problems with refining, production or quality,” said one trader involved in the transactions who asked for anonymity. The bottlenecks in PDVSA’s refineries - from accidents to outages and unplanned stops for maintenance - are well-known. But the dynamics of the Ecuador deal underscore a less familiar truth: as Chavez inks ever-growing numbers of pacts with political allies, PDVSA has found itself in the improbable role of middleman. PDVSA officials did not immediately respond to a detailed request for comment. Trading companies Glencore, Trafigura and PRSI Trading were hired by PDVSA to buy fuel for Ecuador on the open market, the details of the transactions showed. Between 2009 and 2011, 53 per-

NEW DELHI: Pilots of Air India who have been on strike since May 7 and pledging their allegiance to the Indian Pilots Guild, participate in a hunger strike against Air India’s management in New Delhi yesterday. The pilots are protesting unpaid salaries and what they say are a lack of opportunities to train on Boeing 787 Dreamliner jets that the airline has ordered. — AP

cent of Venezuela’s shipments to Ecuador were sourced from third countries, with traders accounting for 39 percent, according to a database of the shipments compiled by Reuters and, a Caracas-based network of investigative journalists. The remaining 47 percent came from Venezuela and its overseas storage and refining facilities, according to the study. In total, shipments valued at $947 million were put in the hands of intermediaries during that 2009-11 period. It was not clear how much traders made on the deals. The agreement signed with much fanfare by Chavez and Correa four years ago says state oil company Petroecuador would supply Venezuela with Ecuadorean crude for processing by PDVSA refineries, and would receive fuel in return from Venezuela. That way, the accord said, it will “eliminate intermediaries from direct participation in the buy-sell process.” Nevertheless, the Venezuelan government says it always planned for there to be scope in the agreement to vary where the crude was sent, and where the products for Ecuador were sourced. “What we are doing is a triangulation,” Venezuelan Energy Minister Rafael Ramirez said when asked by Reuters about the agreement, referring to the practice of receiving Ecuadorean crude then sourcing refined products from abroad. “We receive their oil and we determine its value carefully. It is sold, and we get the products they need, of the quality they need, and it is sold to them.” The Ecuador deal is one of a host of oil deals that Chavez has signed with political allies - including China, Cuba and more than a dozen other nations in Central America and the Caribbean - many of which have been criticized by Venezuela’s opposition before the Oct. 7 presidential election. The opposition says Chavez rewards allies with crude on easy terms, including nations with questionable rights records such as Syria, Iran and Belarus. His government routinely dismisses such criticism as “counterrevolutionary” lies.

Chavez’s government has also funded literacy programs, schools and health clinics in several leftist Latin American nations, winning him political influence in recent years and prompting some leaders to turn their backs on Washington and strengthen relations with China and Russia instead. The oil agreements are a major factor putting pressure on PDVSA’s increasingly constrained cash flow: in some cases, customers pay for shipments in exchange for goods and services. The company also has to contend with falling global prices, and heavy local subsidies that mean Venezuelans enjoy the cheapest gasoline in the world. To be sure, PDVSA still has a lot of financial clout. Its net profit jumped 42 percent to $4.5 billion last year on record revenue of almost $125 billion. And it is still able to make huge contributions to Chavez’s government - they doubled last year to nearly $50 billion that help pay for his signature social programs, a central element of Chavez’s re-election bid. Companies including U.S. majors Chevron and Exxon Mobil Corp, Brazil’s Petrobras and Petrochina also delivered cargoes to Ecuador on PDVSA’s behalf under the deal, according to the bills for the shipments. Individual traders confirmed the trend and various transactions involving their companies. They said Venezuela’s state oil company does the same thing to cover shortfalls in supply deals with other countries. Data on those agreements was not immediately available. “PDVSA buys in the same way to supply Argentina, Uruguay and Bolivia,” a trader told Reuters. It would not be the first time Chavez’s administration has worked with Western traders: Trafigura helped it beat a months-long, opposition-led strike that all but halted operations by PDVSA’s own tankers during 2002 and 2003. Part of the problem is that Ecuador produces heavy crude, like the majority of Venezuela’s oil, meaning there is competition for access to Venezuelan refineries that process it.—Reuters


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


700 North Sea oil workers strike, closures loom OSLO: More than 700 oil workers went on strike in Norway yesterday after pension negotiations broke down, prompting production closures which could cost tens of millions of dollars per day, the employers’ organization said. The strike which started at 4:00 am (0200 GMT) yesterday involved employees of Norwegian oil group Statoil, British oil giant BP’s Norwegian division and ESS Support Services, which is owned by the British Compass Group, the Norwegian Oil Industry Association (OLF) said. The stoppage will cut oil and gas production at Statoil’s Oseberg and Heidrun fields in the North Sea, OLF said, adding though that it would take four to five days for both fields to shut down. It will also postpone work on getting the BP-ESS-run Skarv field into production, which is scheduled for the second half of the year. “That could have an impact on production start-up, reservoir utilization and other planned operations,” the statement said. “The unions are imposing substantial costs on the companies and Norwegian society,” Jan Hodneland, OLF’s chief negotiator, said, adding that “the strike will cost roughly 150 million kroner (20 million euros, $25 million) per day, so it will not take long before the bill tops 1.0 billion kroner.” The strike began after two days of talks broke down over employers’ refusal to change its decision to cut a pension add-on for employees who retire at 62, three years ahead of the general age for oil workers and five years ahead of Norway’s official retirement age, the SAFE and Industri Energi unions explained in a joint statement. “We will not let employers rob us of our pensions. That’s why we are striking,” union chiefs Hilde-Marit Rysst and Leif Sande said, pointing out that the slashed payment system had been in place since 1998, calling the employers organization “arrogant”. OLF’s Hodneland denounced the unions’ demands as “completely unreasonable.” “Oil company employees have an average annual income of 1.0 million kroner and a retirement age of 65. This already makes them Norway’s pension winners,” he said, bemoaning that the unions “nevertheless opted to use their power to win even better terms.” Unions can opt to step up the strike or employers can choose to implement a lockout at four days notice, OLF said. — AFP

Greece aims to stem layoffs, extend recovery: Policy plan Fiscal adjustment may get an extension ATHENS: Greece’s new coalition government will seek to stem layoffs and extend by two years the application period of a tough recovery plan imposed in return for EU-IMF loans, an official document said. The policy document released by the conservative-led coalition government said an upcoming effort to “revise” Greece’s EU-IMF bailout deal in talks with creditors includes “the extension of the fiscal adjustment by at least two years” to 2016. The aim would be to meet fiscal goals “without further cuts to salaries, pensions and public investment” and new taxes, it said, announcing a freeze on further civil service layoffs and a boost to unemployment benefits. “The aim is to avoid layoffs of permanent staff, but to economize a serious amount through non-salary operational costs and less bureaucracy,” the document said. Under its loan agreement, Greece had promised to reduce the state payroll by 150,000 civil servants by 2015, including 15,000 this year. The new government said it also wanted to review minimum wage cuts and measures taken earlier this year to facilitate private-sector layoffs, arguing that collective labor agreements would “return to the level defined by European social law” and what Europeans have agreed on. It said employers and unions should be allowed to set the private sector minimum wage, which was cut by 22 percent to 586 euros ($736) in February among additional austerity measures taken to clinch a new res-

cue deal. The blueprint is designed to reduce anger in Greece towards the austerity policies of the EU-IMF loan agreement which are deemed to have deepened a recession continuing for a fifth year. Over a quarter of Greece’s workforce — 1.12 million-are now jobless according

to official figures. But Greece remains under intense international pressure to implement the terms of the EU-IMF bailout package that has kept the indebted country’s economy afloat for two years. European Commission, IMF and European Central Bank inspectors return

TOKYO: A man holding an umbrella and an electronic device walks by the electronic stock board of a securities firm in Tokyo. Asian stock markets fell Friday as gloomy economic reports from the world’s two biggest economies piled, heightening fears of a sharper global downturn. Japan’s Nikkei 225 index fell 0.6 percent to 8,774.77. —AP

to Athens today to resume discussions suspended because of Greece’s twomonth political deadlock, brought to an end by the elections. The appointment of Greece’s new finance minister was delayed on Friday after the candidate, the 65-year-old chairman of leading lender National Bank Vassilis Rapanos, was hospitalised with stomach pains. Rapanos is expected to be released on Monday, news reports said. Newly-elected Prime Minister Antonis Samaras was also forced to cancel a parliamentary speech on Friday to undergo eye surgery for a retinal detachment. Samaras was likely to remain in hospital yesterday and follow-up tests will determine whether he can fly to an EU summit in Brussels this week, state television said. In its first pronouncement on Thursday, the new coalition government said it planned to revise the EU-IMF loan bailout while safeguarding its place in the euro-zone. The coalition is headed by the New Democracy party and backed by the Pasok socialists and the small Democratic Left party. It can count on 179 deputies in the 300-seat parliament. The new team has nevertheless pledged to honor Greece’s targets on deficit reduction, debt control and structural reforms. “The goal is to create the conditions to take the country out of the crisis for good and out of dependence on loan agreements in the future,” a statement said on Thursday. — AFP

Gloomy data from China, US send crude futures crashing GLOBAL WEEKLY INTERNATIONAL REPORT KUWAIT: US crude futures ended down as gloomy economic data from China, the United States and the euro-zone plus brimming oil supplies sparked a further selloff. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, August crude settled at $79.76 a barrel, dipping by $4.27 for the week. In London, August Brent crude, settled at $90.98, down by $6.63. NYMEX August RBOB settled at $2.5699 a gallon, for the week, the contract fell 1.32 cents. NYMEX August heating oil closed down at $2.5699. For the week, it fell 1.13 cents. Iranian oil exports have fallen steeply is the past months and could slide further pushing oil prices higher again, the International Energy Agency (EIA) said, effectively calling on OPEC to maintain current high oil output levels. The IEA said the world was better supplied with oil now than in recent years but warned against calling it an oversupplied market. “Memories are indeed short: crude prices remain very high in historical terms, and are acting as a drag on household and government budgets in OECD and emerging markets alike,” the IEA said in its monthly report. Markets should not expect oil prices to continue to fall while emerging market demand remains strong and shut-ins persist at key sources of supply, the head of the International Energy Agency, Maria van der Hoeven, told Reuters. Maria said the dip would not necessarily reduce the strain on consumer economies. The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) data showed US crude stocks, excluding oil held in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, rose 2.86mn barrels to 387.3mn barrels in the week to June 15. Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast a drop of 1.1mn barrels. Stocks rose as crude imports jumped 328,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 9.41mn bpd, and as refinery utilization rates remained high, dipping by 0.1 percentage point to 91.9 percent of capacity. Stocks at the Cushing, Oklahoma delivery point for US oil futures rose by 360,000 barrels to 47.76mn barrels, in spite of a reversal last month of the Seaway pipeline that is shipping excess Midwest supplies to Houston. US gasoline inventories rose by 943,000 barrels to 202.74mn barrels, compared with analyst forecasts for an 800,000 barrel increase. Distillates, which include diesel and heating oil, rose by 1.16mn barrels to 121.13mn barrels, versus analyst expectations for an 800,000 barrel increase. Front-month US natural gas futures rose after a smaller-than-expected weekly inventory build. Some buying also went through due to the stir in tropical activity, including a low-pressure system in the Gulf of Mexico that was starting to cause evacuations of staff. Front-month February natural gas futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange settled up at $2.625 per million British thermal units (mmbtu). The EIA report showed total domestic gas inventories rose by 62 billion cubic feet (bcf) to 3.006 trillion cubic feet (tcf ). The build fell just short of Reuters poll estimates for a 64 bcf gain and again came in well below last year’s gain of 90 bcf and the five-year average increase for that week of 87 bcf. The build trimmed the surplus to last year to 680 bcf, or 29 percent, and sliced the excess versus the fiveyear average to 641 bcf, or 27 percent. Early estimates for next week’s EIA report range from 40 bcf to 55 bcf versus a year-ago gain of 84 bcf and a fiveyear average build of 85 bcf. The US Dollar rose for the first time in three weeks versus the Euro as the Federal Reserve refrained from additional asset buying while extending its maturityextension plan, trimming bets on debasing the US currency.

US The US Federal Reserve delivered another round of monetary stimulus and said it was ready to do even more to help an increasingly fragile US economic recovery. The central bank expanded its “Operation Twist” by $267bn, meaning it will sell that amount of short-term securities to buy longer-term ones to keep long-term borrowing costs down. The program, which was due to expire this month, will now run through the end of the year. The Fed slashed its estimates for US economic growth this year to a range of 1.9 percent to 2.4 percent, down from an April projection of 2.4 percent to 2.9 percent. US home re-sales fell in May and the median sales price rose only because of a drop in sale of lower priced homes, casting a shadow on the country’s nascent housing market recovery. The National Association of Realtors said that existing home sales slipped 1.5 percent to an annual rate of 4.55mn units last month. That was in line with analysts’ expectations. Nationwide, the median price for a home resale rose to $182,600 in May, up 7.9 percent from a year earlier and the highest since June 2010. US housing starts fell in May from a 3-1/2 year high, although permits to build new homes rose sharply. The Commerce Department said that groundbreaking on new homes dropped last month to an annual rate of 708,000 units, falling short of analysts’ expectations. However, upward revisions to data for March and April put starts above 700,000 for five straight months, a first since 2008. Starts for single-family homes, which account for most of the market, increased 3.2 percent. Europe Euro-zone consumer confidence was 19.6 in June, little changed from -19.3 in May. In the wider 27- member European Union, consumer sentiment was also roughly stable, at -19.5 from -19.4 in May. Consumer spending makes up more than half of Euro-zone economic output, but households have been squeezed by wage cuts, government spending freezes and record joblessness. German analyst and investor sentiment fell in June at its fastest rate since October 1998, with the worsening of Spanish banking sector and uncertainty over Greek election outcome likely to blame for the drop. The Mannheim-based ZEW economic think tank’s monthly poll of economic sentiment fell to -16.9 from 10.8 in May, way below the forecast in a Reuters poll of 42 analysts for a drop to 4.0. German business sentiment fell for a second straight month in June to its lowest level in over two years, in the latest sign the Euro-zone debt crisis is starting to hit Europe’s largest economy. The Munich-based Ifo think tank said its business climate index, based on a monthly survey of some 7,000 companies, dropped to 105.3 in June from 106.9 in May. A Reuters poll of 44 economists forecast the index would fall to 105.9 in June. The Bank of England is on the verge of approving another round of monetary stimulus, with Governor Mervyn King supporting an extra GBP50bn pounds of gilt purchases, minutes to its June 6-7 policy meeting showed. The minutes show far stronger explicit support for more QE than many economists had expected, and is the first 5-4 split on the MPC since June 2007. British retail sales volumes rose 1.4 percent on the month - a notch above economists’ forecasts for an increase of 1.2 percent - to give an annual rise of 2.4 percent. The ONS said the increase in sales last month was driven by a 3.4 percent monthly rise in sales of clothes and footwear. Shops such as department

stores saw a monthly increase in volumes driven by discounting, taking the annual rise in sales to 11.3 percent - the highest since February 2000. The number of Britons claiming unemployment benefit rose by 8,100 last month. Analysts had forecast a fall of 3,000 on the month. However, the number of people without a job on the wider ILO measure fell by 51,000 in the three months to April to 2.615mn. The jobless rate held at 8.2 percent as forecast. Average weekly earnings growth including bonuses accelerated to 1.4 percent versus forecasts for a rise of 0.8 percent. Excluding bonuses, pay grew by 1.8 percent in line with expectations. British inflation eased unexpectedly in May to its lowest in two and a half years due to slower price rises for food and fuel. The Office for National Statistics said that consumer price inflation fell to 2.8 percent on the year from 3.0 percent in April, confounding economists’ forecasts for an unchanged reading. Between April and May, the consumer price index dropped by 0.1 percent - the first fall in the index between these two months since records began in 1996. Japan A few Bank of Japan board members said the central bank must be ready to act if risks to Japan’s economy materialize as a result of events in Europe, minutes of the central bank’s May 22-23 meeting showed. The central bank set a 1 percent inflation target and boosted asset purchases in February in a show of its determination to beat deflation. It followed up with another increase in asset purchases in April but has stood pat on monetary policy since then, saving its ammunition in case Europe’s deepening debt crisis warrants further supportive action to defend the economy. Japan’s corporate mood turned pessimistic in June for the first time in four months, a Reuters poll showed, as Europe’s deteriorating sovereign debt crisis, a strong yen and worries about a slowdown in emerging markets took their toll on manufacturers’ sentiment. The monthly poll also showed that optimism among service-sector companies held steady in June due to reconstruction-driven demand following last year’s natural disaster. The non-manufacturing sector includes firms engaged in retailing and wholesaling as well as real estate and construction. Emerging Markets China China’s factory sector contracted for an eighth straight month in June, with export orders and prices turning in their weakest showing since early 2009. The HSBC Flash Purchasing Managers Index (PMI), the earliest monthly indicator of China’s industrial activity, fell to a sevenmonth low of 48.1 in June from a final reading of 48.4 in May. It marked the eighth consecutive month that the HSBC PMI has been below 50, indicating contraction. The new orders sub-index fell in June and the new export orders subindex dropped even more sharply, to 45.9, its lowest level since March 2009, the data compiled by Markit Economics Research shows. India The Reserve Bank of India left its policy repo rate at 8 percent and the cash reserve ratio at 4.75 percent, saying a rate cut now could “exacerbate” the country’s inflation, the highest among industrialized or BRIC nations. Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank of India’s Governor Duvvuri Subbarao said a day after the decision was made that the Indian government must reduce spending and not just raise taxes for fiscal consolidation.


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


Uncertainty plagues Europe, FX markets volatile KUWAIT: FX markets lacked a sense of direction last week, with many factors affecting risk appetite. Speculation over another monetary easing from the Federal Reserve and the Bank of England overshadowed the results of the Greek elections at the beginning of the week. The euro started the week on a strong footing, with the pro-euro party winning the majority in the Greek parliament. The single currency opened the week at 1.2715, considerably higher than last week’s close of 1.2636, and continued its rise to reach the week’s high of 1.2747. The euro quickly lost its steam, on worries over Spain’s deteriorating banking situation and increasing talks that the country might need another payment from the ECB as soon as the beginning of July. The euro then closed the week at 1.2570 after Moody’s downgraded some of Europe’s biggest banks. The sterling pound followed suit with its European counterpart, as it opened the week at 1.5742 and fell to 1.5663, as the BOE’s meeting minutes showed that more members voted on additional stimulus for the British economy. Cable plummeted towards the end of the week after multiple downgrades of major banks, and closed the week at 1.5590. The Japanese Yen opened at 78.90, and weakened during the week as the US dollar gained across the board, reaching a 2-month high of 80.56, before closing the week at 80.45. The Swiss Franc witnessed a lot of volatility, as it opened sessions at 0.9448 before reaching a low of 0.9422. The Franc rose towards the end of the week to reach a high of 0.9591, before ending at 0.9555 on Friday night. Building permits Builders took initiative on more homes than expected for a third consecutive month in May, and rising construction permits signals that the residential real-estate market is pointing to further gains and becoming less of a laggard US economic recovery. Building Permits climbed to 780,000, the highest level since October 2008, exceeding the previous month’s figure of 720,000. More Americans filed for jobless benefits last week, an indication that the labor market may continue to struggle and drag the country’s economic expansion. The level of dismissals may raise concerns that the slowdown in payrolls reported in the past few months will be prolonged, limiting consumer spending. Applications for jobless benefits decreased by 2,000 claims to 387,000, against market expectations of a decrease to 381,000, thus, pushing the four-week average to the highest level of the year. Existing home sales Sales of previously owned US homes declined in May, signaling an uneven recovery in the resi-

NBK WEEKLY MONEY MARKETS REPORT dential real-estate market. Purchases of existing homes dropped to 4.55 million last month, versus 4.62 million in April, with an annual rate of decline of 1.5%. The drop came against market forecast of a decline to 4.58 million. The weakest employment gain in a year last month and limited access to credit are restraining the housing industry that has been supported by record-low borrowing costs and cheaper properties that are drawing investors. Manufacturing in US The pace of manufacturing activity in the

Philadelphia region shrank in June at the fastest pace in almost a year, beating economist expectations by far, an indication that the global economic slowdown is holding factories back. The Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank said its business activity index fell to negative 16.6 from negative 5.8 in May. This is the lowest level since August 2011. A reading below zero indicates contraction in the regions’ manufacturing sector. The fear of a recession in Europe and slowing growth in Asia signal fewer orders for US manufacturers. Europe Markets reacted positively after the Greek elections ended with the victory of the pro-Euro parties last Sunday. The conservative pro-Euro political party, New Democracy, won 29.7% of the vote, which gave them 128 seats out of the 300 seats available in the parliament, and socialist Pasok won 12.3% (33 seats). Both New Democrats and Pasok won combined 161 seats over the anti-austerity party, Syriza (72 seats), which guaranteed them a comfortable majority in the formed coalition government. As a result, the Euro opened the week higher at a gap from last week’s close. Moreover, independent auditors have said that up to 62 billion euros is needed to bail out Spain’s troubled banking sector, well below the 100 bil-

lion Euros offered by the euro-zone. However, Spain said that the actual size of bank bailout is to be revealed by July 9. Towards the end of the week, the credit ratings agency, Moody’s, downgraded the world’s 15 largest banks including Credit Suisse, Barclays, RBS, and HSBC after months of speculation about dire fallout and possible credit cuts, sparking fear and uncertainty over the continent’s future and stability. The European Central Bank announced on Friday that they have eased their policy in terms for collateral to access central bank funding. The 17-nation currency gains were limited amid reports that

investors are to take losses in a Spanish debt restructuring. German sentiment German investor confidence endured its biggest drop in fourteen years this month, as Europe’s sovereign debt crisis weighed on the country’s economic outlook, with rising concerns that it will push Europe’s largest economy into a recession. The ZEW economic index of investor and analyst expectations, which aims to predict developments six months in advance, declined to -16.9 from 10.8 in May, the steepest decline since October 1998. Economists forecast a drop to 2.3. Germany’s services and manufacturing sectors contracted for a fifth consecutive month in June, with manufacturing activity hitting a three-year low, indicating that the economy may face difficulties to grow in the current quarter. The Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) slid to 44.7 this month from 45.2 in May, falling further below the 50 mark, which separates contraction from expansion. The numbers add to concerns that Germany’s economy is losing stamina and may have contracted in the second quarter after it steamed ahead in the first three months of the year. German business confidence fell to the lowest

in more than two years in June as the worsening sovereign debt crisis clouded the economic outlook. The German Ifo Business Climate dropped for a second straight month to 105.3 from 106.9 in May, falling short of economists forecast of 106.1. Unemployment in the UK unexpectedly rose in May, signaling that the labor market maybe starting to yield to Europe’s intensifying debt crisis. Unemployment claims rose by 8,100 people in June, against market expectations of a drop of 3,100. The figure points that the labor market is running out of steam, piling more pressure on Prime Minister David Cameron to do more to boost the economy. BOE rejects easing The Governor of the Bank of England, Mervyn King, was blocked from pumping GBP 50 million into the shrinking British economy, after he was outvoted on the central bank’s Monetary Policy Committee. Minutes of the BoE’s policy meeting showed officials split 5-4 against launching a new round of monetary stimulus by buying government bonds, a form of quantitative easing, and the majority voted to keep rates on hold and stick with the current GBP 325 billion asset purchase program. The minutes showed far stronger support for more stimulus than many economists had expected. The narrowness of the decision will heighten expectations of a further boost to quantitative easing in July after another set of dreary economic figures, including a rise in jobless claims. The BoE’s Monetary Policy Committee said the global economy was slowing and that risks to Britain and the rest of the world from financial distress and political tension in the euro zone had intensified. BOJ’s press conference The Governor of the Bank of Japan, Masaaki Shirakawa, has indicated that Europe’s debt woes pose the biggest risk to the global economy as Greece and Spain face continued hardships. Moreover, Shirakawa stated that “major turmoil has been avoided following the outcome of the Greek election last weekend, but there is no change in the fact that Greece faces severe conditions.” The central bank set a 1.0% inflation target and loosened monetary policy in February. It followed up with another easing in April but has been standing put since then to give the central bank the ability to act immediately in case Europe’s debt crisis harms Japan’s export-reliant economic recovery. Kuwait Kuwaiti dinar at 0.28015 The USDKWD opened at 0.28015 yesterday morning.

‘Bite on bullet’: Latvians sympathize with Greeks People learn to be realistic amid hard times

LAS VEGAS: The new Terminal 3 at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas. With the arrival of an overnight flight from London this week, Las Vegas will mark the opening of a $2.4 billion airport terminal that airport and airline industry officials call a key to helping the southern Nevada economy recover from the depths of the Great Recession. —AP

Argentines desperately seeking dollars Cellars mushroom in Buenos Aires BUENOS AIRES: Argentines are on edge since the government imposed draconian measures to control money changers. The measure has complicated their compulsive buying of dollars which, alongside football, is a national pass-time. So-called cellars, the few places where US dollars can still be illegally bought, have sprung up in the capital, but the greenback in these places is now sold at a premium-up to six pesos. The official exchange rate is 4.5. The vendors lining Florida street in the city center are constantly at risk of being caught by policemen, who have dogs trained to sniff out dollars. “The dollar is an Argentine disease,” economist Miguel Kiguel, director of Econviews Institute and a consultant for the Inter-American Development Bank, said in an interview with AFP. “Decades of instability during which people saw their savings seized or evaporate in 2001 when the pesos crumbled” led to the current hysteria, he explained from his 16th-floor office in Buenos Aires. Dollar fever rose when President Cristina Kirchner opted to impose radical controls on currency exchanges and curb imports to protect $46 billion in reserves and a $10-billion trade surplus. “I myself don’t buy the dollar,” said Augusto, beating a drum in an anti-government protest on posh Santa Fe Avenue. “But we must be free to do what we want with our money,” he added. He and 4,000 other middleclass protestors were railing against what they say is a corrupt government that has created economic havoc and imposed draconian

restrictions on buying dollars. “With my money, I do what I want!” or “I want to save without explanation!” said the banners around Buenos Aires. “The saver doesn’t know where to go any more,” said psychiatrist Lia Rincon of Buenos Aires University. “He’s looking for his bearings.” These last weeks, tax authorities have stopped authorizing exchanges of pesos for dollars, except for trips abroad, in a bid to stop hoarding. “People will have to accept that it is impossible to return to the time (in the 1990s) when the pesos was pegged to the dollar,” said Mario Rapoport, an economist at the Institute for historic, economic and social studies. Meantime, people are facing increased hardships while media reports have revealed that members of the government are holding onto their dollars. Kirchner herself was forced to announce on television that she would convert her dollars savings into pesos, a total of $3 million, according to the media. However “pesofying” the economy, could backfire in many sectors such as real estate which rely on the dollar. “We risk slowing economic activity,” predicts economist Eduardo Curia. Growth projections for Argentina are on the decline, after reaching an average eight percent between 2003 and 2011 (except in 2009 when a recession hit). “There are unfortunately risks of stagflation,” in other words combined inflation and a recession, says Kiguel. “In Chile or Brazil, interest rates are higher. It’s the price to pay for a stronger currency.” — AFP

CESIS, Latvia: When the world’s deepest recession struck Latvia in 2009 and jobs dried up, singlemother of seven Inita Radzina had no choice but to pack her bags and leave her children to look for work in Ireland. “I spent three months there crying every night. I realized family is more important than money,” recalls the 43-year-old of her decision to return to her hometown of Cesis and an uncertain future. Her mothering skills helped her secure a job at a daycare run by the town of 15,000 located some 100 kilometers (60 miles) from the capital Riga. “It was hard, but we’re stronger as a family,” she says. “And my children know that when the next crisis happens they are tough enough to cope. It is our national character to survive rather than complain.” Reflecting on how Greeks are dealing with their fifth year of recession and debt debacle, Radzina is unmoved. “If you’re used to a high standard of living, it must seem shocking when it gets slightly worse,” she says. “But if you have never had it easy, hard times don’t seem so surprising,” says Radzina, who remembers life in Latvia when it was still a Soviet republic. Latvia plunged into the world’s deepest recession in 2008-9 when output shrank by a nearly quarter. The emergency nationalization in 2008 of Parex, the largest locally-owned lender, forced Riga into a 7.5-billion-euro ($9.5 billion) international bailout

and a massive austerity drive. Public sector workers took 30percent pay cuts and unemployment topped 20 percent, amid brutal cuts to social spending. Advocates of the “bite the bullet” approach such as IMF Director Christine Lagarde point to its efficacy in getting the economy back on track. In the first quarter of 2012, Latvia was the EU’s fastest-growing economy clocking growth of 6.9 percent year-on-year. Cesis Mayor Girts Skenders cut spending by nearly 30 percent. “We identified our priorities, we didn’t touch our EU co-financing projects and municipal employees took wage cuts instead of losing their jobs. Yes, it was tough,” he says, but is reluctant to offer Greeks advice. “It’s not about being optimistic or pessimistic, it’s about being realistic,” says Skenders. “The crisis

gave us a reality check, maybe it will do the same for them,” he adds. Agris Lapins, head of the town’s EU co-funded business incubator, says that for some Latvians that harsh reality check meant there was “no choice but to start their own company.” Enquiries rose sharply in 2009 at the peak of the crisis and remain strong. The incubator, which provides advice and partial start-up funding is helping around 80 new businesses get established, while another 25 are already doing well. Cesis’s Karumlade cafe is one of its greatest successes. Owners Vineta Zamoidika and Alla Oldermane began baking at home and got such good feedback on their carrot cake and marzipan sweets they decided to set up shop. “We began right at the start of crisis,” says Oldermane. “Naturally we were

scared, but after taking expert advice about our prospects we felt a bit more confident. Within two years it was clear we needed a bigger place.” Zamoidika insists “Latvians have been through similar and much worse battles so many times in the past that they can cope with a crisis.” Marta Matisone, owner of another successful start-up in Cesus making handbags, agrees. “I know some Greeks and I know their country has troubles, but maybe they could see opportunities as well as problems,” the 22-year-old entrepreneur said. An unabashed Francophile, Matisone divides her time between Cesis and Paris. “Hard times are our history. Latvia is a good place for business, but in France I feel like I am at home, and that’s where I would like to bring up my kids,” Matisone says. While emigration offers a chance for many to weather the crisis, the ease with which people can move around Europe since Latvia’s EU accession in 2004 has created other problems. The Baltic state’s population shrank from 2.2 million in 2000 to 2.0 million in 2011 as the crisis prompted people to seek work abroad. Quiet emigration may be to Latvians what noisy protests are to Greeks, says Edvins Puke, one of a just a dozen protestors in Riga recently objecting to hike in the retirement age from 62 to 65. “In Latvia, people don’t go to protests. Their mode of protest is just to leave the country,” Puke observed. — AFP

American Crystal union workers reject contract FARGO, ND: Locked-out union employees at American Crystal Sugar Co. rejected the company’s contract proposal a third time Saturday in a nearly 11-month dispute that focuses on seniority and job security. The union announced that 63 percent of voters opted against the latest offer. Union employees said Crystal was out to break the union, while the company has said it offered a good contract with substantial increases in wages and benefits. “We know that give-and-take negotiations are the only way to get this cooperative back on track to productivity and profitability,” the

Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers union statement said. “That cooperation has produced record profits in recent years, and, only through cooperating, will we be successful again.” In a statement posted on American Crystal’s contract talks website, the company said it is “disappointed” in the union’s rejection, but it “stands by our final offer.” “It is a solid and generous offer that includes wages increases at a time when many companies have cut employee wages and benefits,” the company’s statement said. American Crystal vice president Brian

Ingulsrud did not comment Saturday, other than to refer to the company’s statement. The labor dispute is the company’s first in 30 years. The union said Saturday that 82 percent of the 1,300 workers took part in the vote. The company has said it will continue to operate with replacement workers. American Crystal is the largest sugar beet processor in the country, with plants in East Grand Forks, Moorhead, Crookston and Chaska, Minn.; Hillsboro and Drayton, N.D.; and Mason City, Iowa. It’s a cooperative owned by beet farmers. — AP


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


KUWAIT: Bader Musaed Al-Sayer, Deputy GM, Lexus - Automotive/MNSS with other executives during the launch of new Lexus RX 2013. —Photos by Yasser Al-Zayyat

Lexus RX 2013: The power of innovation New RX features new bolder, signature Lexus spindle grille and upgraded interior KUWAIT: Mohamed Naser Al-Sayer & Sons Automotive Co, exclusive dealer of Lexus in Kuwait, Launched the new Lexus RX 2013 at Lexus Centre - Shuwaikh yesterday. The event was attended by fellow members of the local media. Bader Musaed Al-Sayer, Deputy GM Lexus - Automotive / MNSS welcomed the guests by saying: “I am very pleased to have you again with us this morning to unveil the new RX 2013 MY as a new masterpiece addition to Lexus lineup, demonstrating most appealing spirit for the youth which was first started the Crossover concept for SUV’s worldwide. New RX featuring the new bolder, signature Lexus spindle grille and upgraded interior, and will continue to be the most popular choice in the luxury crossover segment with models available: RX350 and RX450h Hybrid packaged with F Sport. When Lexus was first launched back in 1989, it started with its then single model LS400. And now 20 years on, Lexus lineup offers a total of 17 different models with wide ranging luxury equipment meeting various customer demands. Just in a little over 20 years Lexus managed to become one of the leading luxury brands and even No. 1 luxury brand in Kuwait thanks to its adherence to years long most stringent standards of quality and reliability . For these reasons, it’s no surprise that it outperformed the competition in a relatively short period of time. In keeping with Lexus relentless efforts to conquer further heights in the world of high tech luxury cars where others could do nothing but to clone Lexus, we remain committed to three key strategies for development”. Al-Sayer elaborated on the three key strategies explaining: “Strategy One: Invest in hybrid engines and their environment friendly design and purpose, in tandem with Lexus genius concepts of optimum harmony with the environment . Strategy Two Commitment to keep pace with latest industry tech delivering highest quality standards. Strategy Three Maintain a unique blend of Lexus high quality and high tech engineering standards as featured by F mark by build-

ing superior sport cars like LFA showcasing Lexus latest innovative technology, demonstrated by its Premium Formula with limited edition of just 500 cars for all various world markets , under the F mark , like ISF and more models in the years to come . As Lexus Exclusive and Sole Dealer for Kuwait, we pride ourselves on representing this brand. Our fabulous new Lexus Center as (3 S) (Sale/Service/Parts) facility, on 33 sq. meters, is a best example of our commitment to best serve Lexus brand, located in Shuweikh , serving our elite customers . It’s a landmark in the automotive showroom industry. It is a unique

TMC and MNSS towards everlasting and unshakeable commitment to “Relentless Pursuit of Perfection” and exceptional after sales services. A best example of our commitment to such principle is the recent opening of new Lexus center in Ahmedi along with all required quick and regular maintenance service for our elite customers across Kuwait. Last but definitely not least, MNSS takes this opportunity to reassure you that we will never spare any effort to best serve our customers , thanks to TMC support and cooperation to far outperform the competition “.

new RX overall design is artfully unified, while the wealth of subtle and distinctive detailing means the closer you look the more you will be rewarded. Lexus aim was for not only the driver but all occupants to feel trust in and affection for the vehicle. The interior is laid out in anticipation of the occupants’ every action, putting them at the center of attention. This theme is based not only on comfort and convenience but also safety, with the cockpit aiming to keep the driver’s eyes on the road and their hands on the steering wheel through a clearly defined ‘display zone’ and ‘operation zone’.

stantially improved variant of the proven and reliable engine used in the current model. Featuring dual Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i), comes with 6 speed electronic controlled transmission. In addition, very soon Lexus by the new RX model will introduce RX450h hybrid drive embodies with 2 engines: 3.5L gasoline and 1.0L electric providing full efficient, low fuel consumption, clean low emissions, fun to drive and exceptional quietness. A class-leading coefficient of drag (Cd) further contributes to the new RX’s superb high-speed stability.

architect masterpiece best matching the prestigious stand of Lexus brand. First: Largest new car showroom, featuring most innovative and spectacular design and cutting edge technologies , meeting all our customer needs and showcasing about 40 models of our lineup . Second: Largest top quality certified car showroom accommodating 80 certified cars . Third : Service facilities providing all forms and types of express , quick and regular maintenance services , with car wash facilities and fully equipped new PDI Center . Fourth: Parts facilities far exceeding the industry standards. Fifth: Rest elite fully equipped and furnished facilities. Lexus new center is beyond any doubt a landmark facility featuring perfect combination of luxury and innovation and perfect cooperation between

Addressing the audience, Imad Malaeb , Senior Sales Manager of Lexus MNSS said: “In the beginning I don’t think it would be going too far to say that the new RX has done more than create a new category - it has created a new sense of value.” The launch of the first RX prompted an evolution in customer values and expectations. True to the innovative spirit of its predecessor, the all-new RX350 aims to forge a new path for the crossover vehicle segment, going beyond customer expectations to set new benchmarks in design, innovation, driving performance, utility and safety. The exterior of the vehicle has been taken in a bolder and more dynamic direction, with the L-finesse design philosophy bringing harmony to a host of aesthetic contradictions along with the all new distinctive bold elegance of the spindly grill. You can also enjoy a panoramic roof which confirms that all

The new RX features many examples of Lexus’s commitment to advanced technology, the centerpiece of which is the new Human-Machine Interface, ‘Remote Touch’, Also available to support the driver is a Head-Up Display (HUD) and a state-of-the-art Pre-Crash Safety system (PCS). With new RX, you may do your personal programming for variety of different functions, for example: programming of internal lighting, programming vehicle engine start operation, programming of the timing doors opening, programming voice warning indicators and a lot of other personal programming for so many specifications due to short time I am unable to elaborate in full. For the first time, Lexus on RX offers F Sport package specifically created to enjoy the essence of “F” driving which finds its ultimate expression with the Lexus LFA V10 supercar. The RX350’s 3.5-liter engine is a sub-

Offering a sense of luxury and occasion from the moment it is approached, the vehicle welcomes occupants by illuminating the puddle lamps, scuff plates and interior lamps in anticipation. Such luxury touches continue into the cabin itself. While increases in the exterior dimensions were kept to a minimum for an agile and maneuverable body size, the interior width and front-rear couple distance have been increased and ultraefficient interior packaging makes sure every inch is used to the full. The design of the center cluster is unified and flowing, with the chrome accents adding definition and the neatly sculpted metallic surfaces conveying a sharp, modern looks. The backlit instrument cluster features a white organic LED multi-information display that ensures exceptional readability even from a wide angle. Drivers are constantly bombarded with visual stimuli from both inside and

outside the vehicle when driving. For a relaxed driving experience, it is essential that information from displays, gauges and other features be communicated in a stress-free manner. Front corner windows and a lower dashboard height thanks to the world’s slimmest center air vents - further improve visibility. The centerpiece of the new cockpit is the available Remote Touch, the fruit of extensive customer trials and exhaustive research, appraisals and inter-departmental collaboration. Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS) Three audio systems are available with top-of-the-range 15-speaker Mark Levinson configuration provides an additional center channel coaxial speaker and D-pillar speakers. This worldrenowned premium audio system is compatible with 5.1-channel Dolby surround sound and offers more realism than even a home theatre. An auxiliary audio input jack and optional Bluetooth-compatibility add further convenience. The RX has long been a forerunner in safety technology and the new model continues this tradition, securing worldclass active and passive safety performance provided with: ● Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), ● Traction Control (TRC), ● Hill-start Assist Control (HAC) ● Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) system, ● Electric Power Steering (EPS) system, ● Intelligent Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS), ● Pre-Crash Safety system (PCS), ● Adaptive Cruise Control, ● A class-leading total of 10 SRS airbags come as standard for all models, ● Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management - VDIM, an advanced integrated system that combines sophisticated active safety functions with optimized stability and control. As result, VDIM helps to optimize the driving performance of the vehicle’s basic operations: accelerating, corning and braking. You are about to encounter time with Lexus, in an experience that will be filled with both excitement and calmness Lexus continues to pursue the essence of luxury in order to make the time you spend with the RX350 - and in fact every moment you spend in a Lexus - the best time possible”.

Shurooq concludes tour of China Shurooq meets investment authorities in HK KUWAIT: A delegation of the Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq) wrapped up on Thursday its tour of China, which began on 11 June with the aim of promoting Sjarjah’s investment opportunities and business potential in Beijing and Hong Kong. The delegation, which was led by Ahmed Obaid Al-Qaseer, Chief Operating Officer, and included Elie Armaly, Director of Business Development, and Mohammed Juma Al-Musharrakh, Head of Investment Promotion, held a series of meetings with officials from economic and commercial sectors, as well as with representatives from tourism, business, and investment sectors, and government authorities in Hong Kong. Commenting on the tour, Ahmed Al-Qaseer, said “Following successful meetings with a number of Chinese companies and agencies in Beijing on the sidelines of our participation in the 9th Annual Beijing International Tourism Expo (BITE 2012), we headed to Hong Kong, one of the world’s most important business hubs, where we met with representatives of the business community, including investment and commercial agencies, to discuss possible ways to develop economic and commercial cooperation between Sharjah and Hong Kong.” “ The tour comes in line with Shurooq’s strategy to promote the

emirate and highlight its tourist attractions and investment opportunities, as well as its distinguished geographic location, sophisticated infrastructure and advanced transport networks that allow easy access to local and global markets,” Al Qaseer said. He added: “Sharjah’s economy has one of the highest level of diversification in the region: Sharjah is the only economy in the Middle East with no single sector contributing to more than 1/5th of GDP, offering a great investment opportunity to companies and various sectors in the emirate.” During the meetings, Shurooq highlighted that Sharjah enjoys a strategic location between Europe and the Far East. Sharjah is the only GCC hub with direct access to the Gulf and Indian Ocean, offering a gateway to 160 countries, including 2 billion people. Shurooq’s delegation began its three-day visit to Hong Kong with a meeting with Brenda Poon, Director of New Markets at Hong Kong Tourism Board, where delegation members listened to a presentation on the council’s experience in promoting tourist destinations in the city. Both sides discussed ways of cooperation between them. During a meeting with the management of Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce, the delegation met with Marc Castagant , Board

Chairman, Bahzad Merzai, Deputy Chairman of the board, and a number of officials. Then, the delegation held a meeting with Simon Galpin, Director General of Hong Kong Investment Authority, Pricilla Lu, Head of Financial Services, and Angelica Long, Director of International Operations at the authority. Henry Chung, Chairman of Chinese

Ruler of Sharjah, and the Chinese Government, to develop bilateral relations and take them to higher horizons. Shurooq’s delegation held another meeting with the Indian Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong which was attended by Raj Sital, the Board Chairman, and FH Wan, Director General of the chamber. The Indian

During the delegation meeting with Hong Kong Trade Investment council. General Chamber of Commerce, affirmed the deep-rooted and historical relations between China and the UAE, particularly between Hong Kong and the Emirate of Sharjah. He pointed out that the relations date back to several decades due to the extreme interest showed by His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and

Chamber expressed its great interest in cooperating with Shurooq and called for organizing mutual visits to know Indian companies headquartered in Hong Kong and want to expand in the Gulf and the Middle East region. The delegation concluded its meetings in Hong Kong with a meeting with Hong Kong Trade Development

Council, where Raymond Yip, Deputy Chief Executive of the Council, praised considerable efforts and the tremendous development witnessed in Sharjah. He stressed his country’s keen interest in strengthening the relations and extending bridges of cooperation between Hong Kong and the emirate. “Sharjah pioneered in establishing and developing many points of investment attractions in the Gulf region and the Middle East, and thus we are pleased to develop bilateral relations, especially that Sharjah enjoys an important strategic location and is a point of attraction for businessmen,” Raymond said. He expressed his hope that the near future would see joint cooperation agreements be concluded between both sides. He further went to say that the UAE and Hong Kong have huge capabilities for further cooperation, especially that both parties adopt the policy of economic openness and investment encouraging encouragement, in addition to mutual trust based on strong and distinguished political relations, thus opening up brooder horizons for further future cooperation. Shurooq’s delegation outlined the huge capabilities in the UAE and Sharjah, the existing investment opportunities in the Emirate and facilities and incentives offered by the Emirate of Sharjah to foreign companies that seek to invest in the UAE and

benefit from its strategic position as one of the most important financial and economic hubs in the region and world. The delegation also highlighted the most important investment sectors in the emirate and its rewarding investment opportunities that live up to the aspirations of major global companies. Elie Armaly, Director of Business Development at Shurooq, said: “We are eager to strengthen economic cooperation with all countries across the world, including East Asian countries, and we held several meetings with American, German and British parties to discus means of developing relations in various fields with a focus on economy, trade and investment. We highlighted economic growth witnessed in the Emirate, focusing on the retail, renewable energy, tourism, healthcare and logistics sectors and the promising future and great potential for these sectors in the light of the rapid growth in the region, in general, and Sharjah, in particular, as well as the Emirate’s solid infrastructure and strategic location. Mohammed Juma Al Musharrakh, Head of Investment Promotion, said the UAE market has become one of the best global markets that yield good financial returns due to flexible investment legislation and rules that allow the investor to set up a business without restrictions.

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


This photo of the giant screen at the Jiuquan Space Centre shows the Shenzhou-9 spacecraft preparing to link with the Tiangong-1 module just over a week into a manned space mission which includes China’s first female astronaut, following an automatic docking, yesterday. On right Chinese technicians at the Jiuquan Space Centre monitor the Shenzhou-9 spacecraft.—AFP

China conducts first manual space docking BEIJING: A Chinese spacecraft yesterday successfully completed the country’s first manual docking in orbit, a milestone in an ambitious program to build a space station by the end of the decade. The Shenzhou-9 spacecraft linked with the Tiangong-1 module just over a week into a manned space mission which includes China’s first female astronaut, following an automatic docking last Monday. “The success of the manual docking mission represents a major breakthrough. It was a precise and perfect docking,” Wu Ping, spokeswoman for China’s manned space program, told a news conference in Beijing. Veteran astronaut Liu Wang used a joystick-like device to carr y out the manoeuvre, with state media describing him as “threading the needle”.

The move was the main goal of the 13day Shenzhou (Divine Vessel) mission, testing the docking technique needed to be able to construct a space station-which China aims to do by 2020. “The manual docking is a significant step for China’s manned space program,” chief designer Zhou Jianping told the official Xinhua news agency. “China has fully grasped... docking technologies that are essential to building a space station,” he said. Beijing sees its space program as a symbol of its global stature, growing technical expertise, and the Communist Party’s success in turning around the fortunes of the once poverty-stricken nation. China will invest a total of around 19 billion yuan ($3.0 billion) in Shenzhou missions 7 to 10, Wu said, at a time when the United States

scales back manned space exploration. The manual docking came the same day a manned Chinese submersible set a national record for a deep-sea dive by dropping more than 7,000 metres into the Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean, an achievement also hailed by state media. The two spacecraft first came together in an automatic docking on June 18, and several hours later the three astronauts on board Shenzhou-9 entered the experimental Tiangong-1 (Heavenly Palace) module-a first for China. Earlier on Sunday, the two vessels separated in preparation for the manual docking, which state media originally said would take place around noon (0400 GMT), although it was not completed until roughly 45 minutes later. Three hours after the docking, the three astro-

nauts re-entered the Tiangong-1 to continue research on China’s fourth manned space mission. China has already completed several automatic dockings but the ability to dock manually is necessary in case of problems with the automatic procedure, such as the control centre being unable to carr y it out remotely from Ear th. The manoeuvre-successfully completed by the Americans and Russians in the 1960srequires great accuracy from astronauts as it involves two vessels orbiting Earth at thousands of kilometres (miles) per hour coming together very gently to avoid destroying each other. The team-headed by Jing Haipeng, a veteran astronaut on his third space mission-rehearsed the procedure more than

1,500 times in simulations. Liu Yang, the third crew member, is the first woman China has sent into space and has been hailed as a national heroine, with her mission followed excitedly in the Chinese media and on the countr y ’s popular microblogs. All three astronauts were in “good condition” after over a week in space following the launch on June 16, Xinhua said, adding the Shenzhou-9 was scheduled to return to Earth on June 29. In a commentary, the news agency said China’s space program had no military aims and had a long way to go before catching up with the United States. “China has repeatedly said its space explorations are for scientific purposes and without military intent,” it said. —AFP

IT security problems shift as data moves to ‘cloud’ Trend creates new range of security issues

SINGAPORE: A model holding a mobile phone displaying a stream of text messages on its screen in Singapore. Text messaging, the humble telecoms service that turned into a global phenomenon, is under threat from free smartphone services and operators need to find alternative revenue streams, analysts say. — AFP

Vietnam entrepreneurs find fertile ground online HANOI: Vietnam’s young, tech-savvy population is turning to the Internet to break out of an economic system stifled by decades of communist rule, leading to a boom in e-commerce. Internet entrepreneur Thao Phuong earns twice as much money each month selling tropical fruit online to Hanoi housewives as she does from her day job working at a local post office. The 28-year-old buys fruit such as pomelo, oranges and durian direct from farmers, markets it in Vietnamese-language online forums, and delivers orders herself on her motorbike when she has clocked off a shift sorting mail. “It’s fun and has become a major source of income for me,” she said, adding that she earns up to seven million dong ($330) a month online -twice as much as her monthly salary from her day job. In communist Vietnam, setting up a business is a cumbersome process involving much bureaucratic red tape. As a result, the country has a huge informal economy, which by some estimates accounts for more than half of all economic activity. Over the past few years, hundreds of small online businesses, often run by civil servants or office workers in their spare time, have sprung up-which are not officially registered or licensed, avoiding red tape and fees. “Vietnam is fertile land for online trading to develop,” said Nguyen Tam Khoi, CEO of small Hanoi-based Da Phuc company, which produces anti-fire doors. “A young population and a worldleading Internet development rate are shining signals for the development of etrade in the country,” Khoi said, adding that social media growth was particularly striking in Vietnam. After a string of food scandals-including the discovery of formaldehyde in the national dish, pho noodle soup-Vietnamese consumers are wary and prefer to buy products from trusted sources. Cashing in on this, many small businesses like Phuong’s fruit company are using Vietnamese-language social networks and online forums to market their wares and reach out to customers, usually starting with friends and family. “E-

trade in Vietnam now mainly counts on the personal trust between sellers and buyers,” Phuong told AFP. “There has been no guarantee for clients on the products they buy. Everything depends on the conscience of the seller,” she said. Despite hitches such as a lack of capacity for online payments, with most businesses only taking cash on delivery, the sector is growing. Vietnam’s top four Groupon-style coupon websites recorded hundreds of thousands of transactions and a total turnover of up to 670 billion dong ($31 million). There are no official statistics on how much e-trade more generally contributes to the economy but consultancy group McKinsey said in January the “nascent” industry accounted for a modest 0.9 percent of GDP. The average Vietnamese online shopper spends just $13 a montha combined total of three billion dollars per year-below regional neighbors such as Malaysia ($16) and Taiwan ($26). “E-commerce in Vietnam is an untapped market with high potential to grow,” the report said. For many Hanoi residents like Nguyen Thu Huong, 34, an office worker and mother of two, the rise of online businesses “made life easier for everyone”. “With just an Internet-connected laptop, I can now have everything for my family dinner without having to go to the market. I buy rice, seafood, meat, fruit and even fish sauce online,” she told AFP. As more people like Huong get online-internet penetration is only 34 percent but rising fast, especially in urban areasonline consumption could really take off in Vietnam, officials say. The trend “may bring about stunning results”, said an official from the Ministry of Industry and Trade. However, in order for e-trade to really benefit the official GDP figures, it needs to move from the informal to the mainstream economy, she warned. “There are so many things to improve though, as etrade in Vietnam is still developing at a very unprofessional manner,” she said on condition of anonymity as she is not authorized to talk to the press.— AFP

WASHINGTON: The Internet “cloud” has become the hottest topic in computing, but the trend has created a new range of security issues that need to be addressed. The cloud is associated with things like personal emails and music which can be accessed on computers and a range of mobile devices. But the US military and government agencies from the CIA to the Federal Aviation Administration also use cloud systems to allow data to be accessed anywhere in the world and save money-and, ostensibly, to enhance security. Microsoft, Google, Amazon and others are major players in the cloud, which seeks to transfer some of the data storage issues to more sophisticated data centers. Firms like Oracle, SAP and offer cloud services for business. Strategy Analytics forecasts US spending on cloud services to grow from $31 billion in 2011 to $82 billion by 2016. But some experts say security implications of the cloud have not been fully analyzed, and that the cloud may open up new vulnerabilities and problems. “If past is prologue I don’t think any system is absolutely secure,” said Stelios SidiroglouDouskos, a research scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology ’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. “The analogy most people give is having a lock on your door. It’s not a guarantee no one will break in, but it’s a question of how much time it will take, and if your lock is better than your neighbor’s.” In a cloud environment, “this makes the job of the attacker so much harder, which means

the amateur hacker might be obsolete,” said Sidiroglou-Douskos, who is working on a US government-funded research project to develop “self-healing” clouds. But if a system is breached, analysts say, the amount of information lost could be far greater than what is in a single computer or cluster. “You can have better defenses” in the cloud, “but if an attack happens, it’s highly amplified,” says Sidiroglou-Douskos. The four-year MIT project funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency seeks to develop systems that automatically fix data breaches in a manner similar to “human immunology,” says the researcher. A number of cloud security breaches have raised concerns, including attacks on the Sony PlayStation Network, LinkedIn and Google’s Gmail service. One hacker recently claimed to have stolen credit card numbers from 79 major banks. “Crimes target sources of value. Large company networks offer more targets to hackers,” says Nir Kshetri, a professor of economics who studies cybercrime at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. “Information stored in clouds is a potential gold mine for cybercriminals.” Kshetri said in a paper submitted to the journal Telecommunications Policy that when questions come up, “the cloud industry’s response has been: Clouds are more secure than whatever you’re using now. But many users do not agree.” Marcus Sachs, former director of the Sans Technology Institute’s Internet Storm Center, said the cloud may be more secure but also

Kaspersky Lab launches ‘Kaspersky Music’ KUWAIT: Kaspersky Lab, a leading developer of secure content management solutions, announced today the launch of “Kaspersky Music” service in association with Universal Music Group (UMG), the world’s largest music company. The online music service was launched in an exclusive event held at Cirque du Soir in Fairmont Hotel, in the presence of delegates representing companies, media and bloggers. Kaspersky Lab customers will exclusively receive free access to Kaspersky Music website, available in English and Arabic, and contains a wide variety of music ranging from International music to Arabic, Islamic and poetry available for free download. Kaspersky Music users will also get the chance to participate in frequent raffles and competitions to win concert tickets, CDs and exclusive merchandising from Universal Music. In addition users receive updates on the latest news from Universal Music’s artists around the world and a list of the top downloaded songs from the website. Commenting on the launch of Kaspersky Music, Tarek Kuzbari, Managing Director, Kaspersky Lab Middle East and Turkey said, “We are offering our customers a unique and safe music browsing experience in the Middle East region, and we couldn’t think of any better partner than Universal Music to partner with for such an initiative. Kaspersky Music is one of the services that we will be providing to our current and potential customers whom will benefit from download of different kind of music tracks”. Patrick Boulos, Managing Director of Universal Music Group, MENA said, “Universal Music Group works with many multinational corporations around the world and we are happy now to extend our experience in the field of music to Kaspersky Lab. We will be feeding the Kaspersky Music service with the latest top chart hits, International news and music, great Universal artists’ merchandise products, to offer Kaspersky Lab customers an exclusive, first of its kind, musical experience.”

opens up new questions. “In the cloud, you don’t necessarily know where your data sits,” Sachs said. “That doesn’t make it less vulnerable to attack, but there are questions when it comes to (an) audit, or if you want to take the data back or destroy it, how do you know you’ve erased it?” Sachs said that analysts have also discovered “fake clouds” which are offered as low-cost alternatives but are in fact operated by “criminal groups which monitor and steal the data.” “We have seen instances of this not in the US, but in the former Soviet Union and in China,” he said. Still, the cloud market is burgeoning, with companies and government agencies moving to either “public” clouds that are easily accessed or so-called “private clouds” that are segregated from the Internet. Some analysts say other issues need to be resolved about cloud computing, such as who is liable if data is lost, and how data can be accessed for government investigations. Outages have recently affected Apple’s and Amazon’s cloud services, causing some websites to be affected. “Privacy, security and ownership issues in the cloud fall into legally gray areas,” Kshetri says. Sidiroglou-Douskos said there is no single answer for people or companies choosing between cloud systems and holding the data themselves. “If you are trying to protect yourself from the government, then having it in the public cloud makes it easier for them to get it,” he said. “If your main worry is a hacker in Russia, maybe (cloud) infrastructure is better for your own security.” —AFP

China submersible breaks 7,000-m mark BEIJING: A manned Chinese submersible broke through the 7,000metre mark for a new national deep water dive record yesterday, state media said, as the Asian giant showed off its technological might. The “Jiaolong” craft reached 7,020 metres (23,031 feet) in the Mariana Trench in the western Pacific Ocean on its fourth dive since arriving in the area earlier this month, state television said. The dive came on the same day China successfully completed its first manual space docking, a complex manoeuvre that will bring the country a step closer to building a space station. “This (dive) shows the performance of the submersible is stable,” mission chief commander Liu Feng told a live television broadcast from aboard the ship supporting the submersible. “The level of our technical personnel is getting better and better.” The Jiaolong-named after a dragon from Chinese mythology-carried three men into the Mariana Trench, the deepest place in the world, then returned to the choppy surface after nearly 11 hours. The same submersible reached 5,188 metres in a Pacific dive in July last year. And in a series of three previous dives since June 15, the craft has gone deeper still. Experts say 7,000 metres is the limit of its design. Other manned submersibles have gone deeper than China’s craft. Earlier this year, American

film director James Cameron descended almost 11,000 metres to the bottom of the Mariana Trench. His effort is believed to have at least equalled the record for the deepest manned dive, set by a US Navy officer and a Swiss oceanographer in 1960, according to Guinness World Records. China intends to use the submersible for scientific research, such as collecting samples of undersea life and studying geological structures, as well as future development of mineral resources, experts say. On its third dive on Friday, the crew collected samples of water and sediment and took photos of sea life, the official Xinhua News Agency said. Scientists say the ocean floors contain rich deposits of potentially valuable minerals, but the extreme depths pose technical difficulties in harvesting them on a large scale. And the stability and durability of the craft presents further difficulties for future operations. The recent round of dives have seen some technical glitches, such as the breakdown of communications equipment and problems with the adjustable ballast system, state media has reported. The 7,000 metre dive was previously scheduled for today, state media had reported. The reasons for the change of date were unclear but mean the record-setting dive came the same day as China’s landmark space manoeuvre. — AFP


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

Zumba no longer just exercise, it’s big business Dance workout is inspired by Latin rhythms

INDONESIA: File photo shows soldiers wear protective gear during a bird flu prevention drill in Jakarta.—AP

Bird flu study published after terrorism debate NEW YORK: The second of two bird flu studies once considered too risky to publish was released Thursday, ending a saga that pitted concerns about terrorism against fears of a deadly global epidemic. Both papers describe how researchers created virus strains that could potentially be transmitted through the air from person to person. Scientists said the results could help them spot dangerous virus strains in nature. But last December, acting on advice of a U.S. biosecurity panel, federal officials asked the researchers not to publish details of the work, which identified the genetic mutations used to make the strains. They warned the papers could show terrorists how to make a biological weapon. That led to a wide-ranging debate among scientists and others, many of whom argued that sharing the results with other researchers was essential to deal with the flu risk. Bird flu has spread among poultry in Asia for several years and can be deadly in people, but it only rarely jumps to humans. People who get it usually had direct contact with infected chickens and ducks. Scientists have long worried that if the virus picked up mutations that let it spread easily from person to person, it could take off in the human population, with disastrous results. The two teams that conducted the controversial research eventually submitted revised versions of their papers to the federal biosecurity panel. They said the changes focused on things like the significance of the findings to public health, rather than the experimental details themselves. The panel announced in March it supported publishing the revised manuscripts, saying it had heard new evidence that sharing information about the mutations would help in guarding against a pandemic. It also concluded that the data didn’t appear to pose any immediate ter-

rorism threat. The government agreed in April. The benefit of scientists sharing data from the new paper “far outweighs the risk,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said last Wednesday. One paper, from Yoshihiro Kawaoka of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and colleagues, was published last month by the journal Nature. On Thursday, the journal Science published the second paper, from a team led by Ron Fouchier of the Netherland’s Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam. Both papers tested the ability of the altered bird flu viruses to spread through the air between ferrets, none of which died from those infections. The Fouchier paper reports that the virus could spread this way by acquiring as few as five specific mutations. Two of those mutations are already found frequently in strains of the virus. And the other three could arise during infection of people or other mammals, a new mathematical analysis in Science concluded. But the likelihood is unclear. An author of the analysis compared the situation to earthquake prediction. “We now know we’re living on a fault line,” Derek Smith of Cambridge University and the Erasmus center told reporters. “It’s an active fault line. It really could do something.” Fouchier said the ferret results don’t give a clear answer about how deadly an altered virus would be in people. Eddy Holmes of Penn State University, who studies the evolution of flu viruses but did not participate in the Fouchier or Kawaoka studies, said those works present the first good experimental evidence about how the bird flu virus could mutate to become more easily spread between people. The studies are “a useful frame of reference” for studying that question, but not the final answer, he said.—AP

MIAMI: Alberto Perez started out as a street performer and then an aerobics teacher in Colombia, making extra cash on the side teaching the wives of businessmen how to dance in nightclubs in his hometown, Cali. Today, he stands at the center of the Zumba exercise craze, having helped transform Zumba Fitness, a private company, into a rapidly growing fitness empire with heavyweight investor backing. “I’m not a businessman, but I knew this had the potential to be something special,” said Perez, who along with two Colombian associates founded the Miami-based company. Zumba, a Latin danceinspired aerobic workout, has exploded from a Miami gym phenomenon to infomercial and DVD smash hit into a global craze with some 12 million people taking classes every week in at least 125 countries. Zumba Fitness now boasts being the largest branded fitness program in the world. Started on a shoestring budget in a Miami garage nearly 11 years ago, Zumba Fitness now has more than 200 employees, and a pair of New York investment firms is betting the craze has staying power. What began as a company focused on fitness has evolved into a lifestyle and entertainment brand combining e-commerce, apparel and music, and a sought-after outlet for stars like hip-hop artists Pitbull and Wyclef Jean and reggaeton singer Don Omar who have turned to Zumba to promote their music. The accidental instructor Zumba got its start by chance in the 1980s. Perez, who is known as Beto, was eking out a living as a street performer and salsa and merengue nightclub dancer known for his boyish model looks and muscular physique. One day the owner of a nearby gym called and asked if Perez could stand in for an injured aerobics teacher. He agreed - but didn’t mention he had never done aerobics and rushed out and bought a copy of Jane Fonda’s Workout Book. His fitness career was born. Months later, getting ready for a class, Perez forgot his aerobics music. Instead, he put on his own merengue and salsa tapes and improvised dance moves for a workout, creating what today is known as Zumba. It proved to be a hit and he quickly developed a loyal following before he moved to Bogota, where he briefly worked as a choreographer with pop star Shakira. In 1999, Perez packed up and headed to Miami, speaking no English but hoping to make a breakthrough in the Latin-flavored U.S. city with his new dance exercise class. He struggled before eventually building up a large, adoring fan base of mostly Colombian expatriate women, including the mother of Alberto Perlman. Then a technology entrepreneur, Perlman lost his job in the dot-com bust two years later and was struggling with what career move to make next. He co-founded Zumba Fitness and is now its chief executive. “My mom had been taking his classes for years,” he said. “She would tell me about this amazing class but I never paid attention. When the bubble burst, I went to have dinner at her house and she kept saying ‘Talk to Beto, maybe you guys could start a gym.’” “I said I’d meet with him but I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with him,” Perlman recalled. But

12 million and counting Perlman said growing the instructor and student base is the firm’s top priority, with a goal of one day reaching 100 million students, more than eight times the current number.The company has also launched its own line of brightly colored clothing, Zumba footwear and a glossy magazine named “ZLife”, all designed in its Miami office. But it is also focused on developing TV shows, pushing

The Zumba ecosystem Once Zumba gained exposure on infomercials, fans started asking for more. The company began receiving calls at all hours of the day from people saying “I want to be a Zumba instructor,” said Perlman. By 2005, the company decided to develop the global instructor network and Zumba took off. The instructors each pay $30 a month to receive regular installments of new music and dance and exercise steps. “It’s their ecosystem,” said Wells, the investor. The network has turned Zumba instructors in the United States and across the globe as far away as South Korea and Norway into entrepreneurs. “It’s become my small business,” said Betsy Dopico, a native Cuban who moved to Miami from Mexico four years ago and now teaches Zumba classes. On a recent night, around 60 people packed a downtown Miami dance studio for her hourlong class. Salsa and merengue rhythms throbbed on loudspeakers as the group of mostly

into global markets, particularly Eastern Europe, Asia and Latin America, and exploiting a new business opportunity: fitness concerts. “I see Zumba Fitness also as an entertainment brand,” Perlman said. “It’s becoming a music, TV and concert platform.” Fitness fads rise and fall. But two prominent investment firms have made bets Zumba Fitness will avoid going the way of workout has-beens like Jazzercise, Thighmaster and the Ab Rocket. “You see a lot of feasts and famines in the fitness industry,” said Richard Wells, managing director of New York-based Insight Venture Partners, a private equity and venture capital firm that has invested in Twitter and Tumblr. The firm made a minority investment in Zumba Fitness earlier this year. “They are just scratching the surface of its potential,” Wells said. The Raine Group, a media and entertainment investment firm based in New York, also has invested in the firm. Neither company would reveal the size of its investment. Perlman said Zumba Fitness hopes to draw on the firms for media, entertainment and technology resources and has no plans to go public.“While there isn’t a lot we rule out at Zumba Fitness, this is not on our radar at this time,” he said.

20-something and middle-aged women in sweatdrenched T-shirts and exercise tights spun around, kicked and jumped to the music. A handful of men also participated, most of them mimicking Dopico’s moves from the back of the class. Mehdi Benhaddouch, a 32-year-old account executive at a financial company, said he had grown bored with gym workouts before settling on Zumba a few months ago. “It’s like going to a nightclub, but you’re exercising,” he said.The company has turned live concerts into fitness experiences where concert-goers follow Zumba instructors on stage while artists perform. A concert in Orlando, Florida, last year drew thousands. “My dream is to see fitness concerts all over the world, traveling shows, permanent shows in Las Vegas,” Perlman said. “The artists love it too, because it’s a new way of selling their music.” Success has also brought challenges. Pirated versions of Zumba Fitness DVDs and clothing have led the company to hire a staff of a dozen people to combat counterfeiting. Perez, whose official title is “chief creative officer”, said Zumba’s explosive popularity is rooted in its simplicity of having a good time.—Reuters

after watching a class, he came up with the idea for a new fitness video he hoped could be an infomercial success. The men sought to put a name on the exercise, first thinking of the Spanish word rumba, which loosely translates as party, but realized it was already trademarked. “We just went through the alphabet to see what rhymes with rumba,” Perlman said. “We were getting nervous by the end, nothing sounded good - bumba, kumba. Then we settled on Zumba, it was perfect.”

Male bird loses interest in fading females, study finds PARIS: Not unlike some among their human counterparts, male blue tits lose interest when their mates’ beauty starts fading, staying out longer and neglecting their offspring, a report said Monday. Scientists who dulled the bright blue head tinge that crowns the female of the species, subsequently noticed the males skulking off for more alone time and making fewer trips to feed their chicks. “It seems that they stay around, but not in the nest,” study co-author Matteo Griggio told AFP. “Probably they take a rest.... It is not a joke, probably they keep some energy, maybe for the next breeding season?” Both male and female blue tits, which usually have several mating partners in a lifetime, have feathers on the tops of their heads that reflect UV light. For the purposes of the experiment, the team from the Konrad Lorenz Institute of Ethology in Vienna waited for chicks to hatch before smearing an oil containing UV-blocking chemicals on the crowns of the females. To con-

firm that it would not be the smell that put off the males, they applied the same oil, without UV-blockers, to a separate test group of females. The scientists said they took care not to render the partners unrecognizable to each other. “The UV reflectance of the crown plumage of female blue tits significantly affected male investment in feeding nestlings,” the team wrote in a study published in the BioMed Central journal Frontiers in Zoology. “Males made less frequent feeding trips when paired with UV-reduced females.” While much has been written about male posturing and strutting to compete for female attention, this was a rare study to measure male response to female attractiveness in the animal kingdom. The results showed that female blue tits must invest a lot of time in preening to remain attractive as sexual partners. In nature, those birds with poorer personal hygiene risk losing their blue lustre under a coating of dust, pollution or parasites.—AFP

JAPAN: (Left) In this Dec. 13, 2006 photo provided by the Primate Research Institute of Kyoto University, a 5 1/2-yearold chimpanzee named Ayumu performs a memory test with randomly-placed consecutive Arabic numerals, which are later masked, accurately duplicating the lineup on a touch screen computer in Kyoto. (Right) After being told a word, an orangutan points to that object on an iPad computer tablet at Jungle Island zoo in Miami.—AP photos

What was he thinking? Study turns to ape intellect WASHINGTON: The more we study animals, the less special we seem. Baboons can distinguish between written words and gibberish. Monkeys seem to be able to do multiplication. Apes can delay instant gratification longer than a human child can. They plan ahead. They make war and peace. They show empathy. They share. “It’s not a question of whether they think - it’s how they think,” says Duke University scientist Brian Hare. Now scientists wonder if apes are capable of thinking about what other apes are thinking. The evidence that animals are more intelligent and more social than we thought seems to grow each year, especially when it comes to primates. It’s an increasingly hot scientific field with the number of ape and monkey cognition studies doubling in recent years, often with better technology and neuroscience paving the way to unusual discoveries. This month scientists mapping the DNA of the bonobo ape found that, like the chimp, bonobos are only 1.3 percent different from humans. Says Josep Call, director of the primate research center at the Max Planck Institute in Germany: “Every year we discover things that we thought they could not do.” Call says one of his recent more surprising studies showed that apes can set goals and follow through with them. Orangutans and bonobos in a zoo were offered eight possible tools - two of which would help them get at some food. At times when they chose

the proper tool, researchers moved the apes to a different area before they could get the food, and then kept them waiting as much as 14 hours. In nearly every case, when the apes realized they were being moved, they took their tool with them so they could use it to get food the next day, remembering that even after sleeping. The goal and series of tasks didn’t leave the apes’ minds. Call says this is similar to a person packing luggage a day before a trip: “For humans it’s such a central ability, it’s so important.” For a few years, scientists have watched chimpanzees in zoos collect and store rocks as weapons for later use. In May, a study found they even add deception to the mix. They created haystacks to conceal their stash of stones from opponents, just like nations do with bombs. Hare points to studies where competing chimpanzees enter an arena where one bit of food is hidden from view for only one chimp. The chimp that can see the hidden food quickly learns that his foe can’t see it and uses that to his advantage, displaying the ability to perceive another ape’s situation. That’s a trait humans develop as toddlers, but something we thought other animals never got, Hare said. And then there is the amazing monkey memory. At the National Zoo in Washington, humans who try to match their recall skills with an orangutan’s are humbled. Zoo associate director Don Moore says: “I’ve got a Ph.D., for God’s sake; you would think I could out-

think an orang and I can’t.” In French research, at least two baboons kept memorizing so many pictures - several thousand - that after three years researchers ran out of time before the baboons reached their limit. Researcher Joel Fagot at the French National Center for Scientific Research figured they could memorize at least 10,000 and probably more. And a chimp in Japan named Ayumu who sees strings of numbers flash on a screen for a split-second regularly beats humans at accurately duplicating the lineup. He’s a YouTube sensation, along with orangutans in a Miami zoo that use iPads. It’s not just primates that demonstrate surprising abilities. Dolphins, whose brains are 25 percent heavier than humans, recognize themselves in a mirror. So do elephants. A study in June finds that black bears can do primitive counting; something even pigeons have done, by putting two dots before five, or 10 before 20 in one experiment. The trend in research is to identify some new thinking skill that chimps can do, revealing that certain abilities are “not uniquely human,” said Emory University primatologist Frans de Waal. Then the scientists find that same ability in other primates further removed from humans genetically. Then they see it in dogs and elephants. “Capacities that we think in humans are very special and complex are probably not so special and not so complex,” de Waal said.—AP

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


(Left) Loretta Moore walks along the Detroit Riverfront at William G. Miliken State Park and Harbor in Detroit. (Centre) Virginia Pye takes a break in the shade while walking along the Detroit Riverwalk in Detroit. (Right) Jodi Davis takes her dogs Skyla and Izzie for a walk recently.—MCT photos

Walking it off: The journey toward weight loss begins with a single step DETROIT: Loretta Moore looked at herself in the mirror one morning and didn’t like what she saw. “I was ridiculously overweight,” Moore said. “I couldn’t get into most of my clothes anymore.” Standing 5feet-4, Moore weighed 252 pounds. That image was all it took for Moore, 56, of Detroit to start walking regularly. It took a funeral for Jodi Davis. At the funeral of a relative, she watched as the woman’s son cried at his mother’s casket. The woman who had died was in her early 40s. “I thought that could be me” in the casket, said Davis, 45, of Coloma in western Michigan. Davis, too, was extremely obese. She is 5-feet-6 and weighed 300 pounds. Although they live in different parts of the state, Moore and Davis took similar steps to get their weight and health under control. They began walking regularly and eliminated a lot of sugary and high-fat foods from their diets. Moore shed 69 pounds in the past two years and is working toward losing more. And she no longer takes medications to

control her once-high blood pressure. After dropping 162 pounds over 16 months, Davis has maintained her weight for about 10 years. She became a healthy living advocate for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and is featured on the cover of the recently released “The Joy Fit Club: Cookbook, Diet Plan & Inspiration” (Wiley, $27.99) by Joy Bauer, a nutrition expert on NBC’s “Today” show. Moore and Davis are proof that getting fit starts by taking it one step at a time. Health and fitness experts say that walking is one of the best ways to improve your health — and that when the weather is warm; it’s a great time to get started. “There are clear physical, emotional and social benefits of walking,” said Victor Katch, an avid walker and University of Michigan movement science professor. Walking reduces depression and wards off or slows the progression of chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease, Katch said. And one of the best things about walking as a major form of exercise

is that almost everyone can do it. “Walking is easy to do. It engages most of the major muscles of the body. It’s good for balance and internal functioning,” he said. And, unlike some exercises, you don’t have to go anywhere special to do it, said Katch, who walks daily sometimes twice or three times on a really good day. “I’m a mover,” he said. “I’d like to say I’m a mover and a shaker, but really, I’m just a mover.” Katch and other walking advocates say two of the best ways to stick to a regimen is to have a partner or group, to walk in places that inspire and encourage you and to set a goal — such as walking a 5K or a half marathon. The scenery, improved health and group support are among the attractions for the Detroit River Walkers _ a group of almost 1,000 people 60 and older who walk Tuesday and Thursday mornings on the Detroit RiverWalk in a program sponsored by Detroit Receiving Hospital. “My strength and endurance have improved,” said Edythe Hayden Friley, 65, who has been walking with the River

Walkers for five years. “And it’s good for me emotionally. You hear so much bad stuff about the city. But here, there’s such peace, tranquility and beauty along the water. It just makes you feel good.” The Detroit RiverWalk is one of Moore’s favorite places to go for a stroll, too. She walks along the riverfront at least three times a week. Occasionally, they veer off along the nearby Dequindre Cut Greenway. “We started out just doing a few miles, but sometimes we get in about 7 miles,” says Moore, a clinical care manager for a mental health facility in Wixom. “I can wear all my clothes again,” she says. “I love the new me.” Davis walks every day for at least 1 { miles along Lake Michigan near her home. Both women suggest walking at a brisk pace; as they lost weight, they were able to walk faster. And Davis discovered other benefits besides weight loss. “I have much more energy,” she said. “My thoughts are clearer and I sleep better. Whenever I’m feeling stressed, I get outside and stomp it off.”—MCT

S Africa looks to toughen anti-smoking laws JOHANNESBURG: Health authorities are working at tightening South Africa’s antismoking laws, proposing a total ban on indoor smoking and even making it illegal to puff away in open spaces such as beaches. Stadiums, zoos, parks, outdoor eateries and beer gardens would all be affected. At beaches, smoking would only be allowed at least 50 metres from the closest person. But before introducing any new law, the health ministry will throw open the proposals to the public in discussions next week. It is the second time in five years that South Africa has tried to amend its legislation to make it even harder for smokers to indulge in their habit. Even before the regulations are debated and final deci-

sions made however, many smokers are fuming, labelling the plans as “extreme”, “shameless” and an intrusion on people’s rights. “It’s a kind of hysteria, a kind of peculiar semi-religious fundamentalist puritanism,” said Leon Louw, director of the Free Market Foundation, a think tank pushing for an open society free of regulations. “It’s a kind of vicious assault on other peoples’ choices and lifestyles.” If the regulations went through they could constitute a breach of freedom and even result in job losses, the foundation suggests. “The anti-tobacco fanatics... the nicotine nazis or nico-nazis obviously will not stop until it’s full prohibition,” he added. In 2007, lawmakers approved a litany of

changes that sought to close loopholes in the Tobacco Products Control Act of 1993. On Wednesday, the Supreme Court of Appeal upheld that law’s blanket ban on tobacco ads. It rejected a lawsuit brought by British American Tobacco SA, which had argued that the restrictions infringed on the company’s free speech rights. Buoyed by that case, anti-smoking lobbyists are rejoicing at the latest stringent proposals. “It goes the next step to protect health and we think it will work practically,” said Peter Ucko, director of the National Council Against Smoking. Pro-smoking lobbyists argue that enforcing such a broad ban would be impossible, but Ucko insisted the laws will

work. Since the 2007 regulations, “no one smokes in shopping malls anymore,” hesaid. Hoteliers appear unfazed by the pending changes. “There may be certain discomfort for restaurants and pubs, but for the hotels, I don’t think there will be an impact from the revenue point of view,” said Eddie Khosa of the Federated Hospitality Association of Southern Africa. If the changes are adopted, South Africa would become the first African country to go smoke-free. There were some 7.7 million adult tobacco users in South Africa last year, lighting up an estimated 27 billion cigarettes, according to the Tobacco Institute of Southern Africa. But these numbers are 30-percent down on those from 10 years ago.—AFP


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

WHAT’S ON Greetings

earest Y. Bharat Simha Yadav, happy birthday to you and God bless you always. Greetings from your loving parents Rajani & Venu and grand parents Sree Ramulu & Subhadra mama Shiva Prasad.


Announcements Open House for Indian citizens pen House for Indian citizens by the ambassador which is being held every alternate Wednesday has been found useful by the Indian community and the embassy. It will now be held on every Wednesday from June 2012 between 1500 hrs and 1600 hrs. in the embassy. During the month of June, 2012 the dates for the open house fall on 20th and 27th of the month. In case Wednesday is an embassy holiday, the meeting will be held on the next working day. To ensure timely action/follow-up by the embassy, it is requested that, wherever possible, Indian citizens should exhaust the existing channels of interaction/grievance redressal and bring their problems/issues in writing with supporting documents. It may be mentioned that embassy of Indiaís Consular Wing is providing daily service of Open House to Indian citizens on all workings days from 1000 hrs to 1100 hrs and from 1430 hrs to 1530 hrs by the Consular Officer in the Meeting Room of the Consular Hall. For any unaddressed issues, Second Secretary (Consular) could be contacted. Furthermore, the head of the Consular Wing is also available to redress grievances. Similarly, a labour wing Help Desk functions from 0830 hrs to 1300 hrs and 1400 hrs to 1630 hrs in the Labour Hall to address the labour related issues. There is also a 24x7 Help Line (Tel No. 25674163) to assist labourers in distress. For any unaddressed issues, the concerned attaches in the labour section and the head of the labour wing could be contacted.


‘Leniency of Islam’ An unprecedented initiative of KTV2 (English channel) is the new program by the name ‘Leniency of Islam’ presented by Shaikh Musaad Alsane and directed by Hamid Al-Turkait. The program is mainly meant to address the expatriates living in Kuwait. Religious questions are received through the program email and sms can be sent to- 97822021 and answered by the lecturer and Imam in Awqaf Ministry Shaikh Musaad Alsane - a Master Degree holder in Sharia and fiqih from Kuwait University. So don’t forget to watch the program every Friday at 1:00 pm. Free Arabic course IPC is opening an Intensive Basic Arabic Course for ladies commencing from June 3 to July 8, 2012. The class will be from 5-7 pm for three days a week. Registration is on! For information, call 22512257.

The Infunity Entertainment Center celebrates the World Musical Day he Family Entertainment Center “Infunity” which located at the 360 Mall (3rd level) organized a special event to celebrate the World Musical Day on Thursday June 21st, 2012 from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm under the sponsorship of the Commercial Bank of Kuwait (CBK). The event offered both adults and children the chance to participate in various shows and competitions to win many valuable prizes, while delving into the magical and entertaining world of music. In this regard and as part of its social responsibility, Infunity Center, the largest family entertainment center in Kuwait, has organized the ‘Infunity Got Talent’ competition, a monthly contest open to all children in cooperation with the Commercial Bank of Kuwait. The competition was launched on the World Musical Day and featured many valuable prizes offered by the Commercial Bank of Kuwait to all the winning contestants showcased their outstanding talents while expe-


riencing the thrill of competition. Open to all children and parents, the World Musical Day celebration event is an appeal to the spontaneous and free participation of all talented kids who wish to express their musi-

cal talents. During this special occasion, Infunity Center gave all children the opportunity to perform their live music shows while offering a particular chance for children with special needs to present their talents and abili-

KEA recently announced that it has released its annual Sustainability report for the year 2011. The report notes key achievements that it has done across its sustainability practice, and sheds light on the wide range of initiatives that IKEA has led, and took part in. At IKEA, sustainability is considered one of the four cornerstones in the five year strategy in which the sustainability direction outlines IKEA’s priorities until FY15 as an overall objective for the bet-


terment of the society in operates from. Working in different segments under the corporate social responsibility framework, IKEA store’s persistent hard work within various environment and social segments have continued in fetching sustainable results . Beginning with the IKEA Foundation for instance, total donation increased 65 million euro from 45 million the year before and currently funded programs are expected to benefit an estimated 100 million children. IKEA Japan provided

immediate relief in the form of water and food as well as IKEA products such as blankets and soft toys, and later donated home furnishings for some 7,000 temporary houses for the earthquake in Japan, March 2011. IKEA still strives hard to battle the rapidly growing industries effects of living a sustainable life by introducing intelligent and creative ways to follow sustainable solutions across the network. Energy efficiency across all IKEA stores improved by 4% compared to

ndo-Kuwait Friendship Society, Kuwait ( is planning to conduct competitions in Indian and Kuwaiti Patriotic songs. This is the first time in Kuwait, an Indian Association is organizing contests in “Patriotic Songs” for both Indian and Kuwaiti School students. The first 3 places will be declared separately by Judges who are experts in Indian and Kuwaiti Patriotic songs. Several prizes and awards will be handed over for the winning schools. Pradeep Rajkumar and A K S Abdul Nazar said that IKFS wants let our children learn what they mean as a “Patriotic” to their home country. 4 pages of spot Essay competition related to “Patriotism” also will be held in the same day as a spot registration. 1 Girl and 1 Boy student from each School can participate in the ESSAY contest. Dr. Mohamed Tareq, Chairman of the First Indian Model School in Kuwait “ Salmiya Indian Model School (SIMS) already confirmed as a CoSponsor of the Program.


Bangladesh Awami League Ad-hoc committee holds press conference angladesh Awami League Kuwait chapter’s ad-hoc committee called on a press conference at Gulhsan Hotel in Kuwait City on Thursday, 14th June 2012. The conference was covered by expatriate Bengali representative and journalists of all print and electronic media. Belal Faruk convener of Bangladesh Awami League Kuwait chapter’s ad-hoc committee had presented a written statement in the conference. He had stated that in the name of Bangladesh Awami League a vested interested group of expatriate in Kuwait is engaged in all sorts of ill activities for quite a long time. They are tarnishing the bright image of Bangladesh as well as Bangladesh Awami League abroad. This practice can not continue forever and must be stopped immediately - he


emphasized. In this course, Bangladesh Awami League Kuwait chapter’s full pledged executive committee shall be formed by Patriotic, honest, hardworking and dignified party activists very soon. Convener of the league Belal Faruk and the member secretary - Gallant freedom lighter Moyob Ali Mahabub and other leaders had answered the queries of journalists in the conference. Along with the journalists leaders from Awami League, Seschsasebak League, Sromik League, Soinik League as well as a good number of Socio-cultural and business establishments figure heads were present in the press conference.

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Summer Scrabble for kids upcoming events, birthdays or celebrations by email: Fax: 24835619 / 20

2010 helping us save 6.2 million euro and demonstrating how sustainability improvements can deliver strong business benefits. More than half of IKEA buildings’ energy need now comes from renewable sources. Among other notable achievements for 2011, IKEA was the first retailer in the world to introduce 100% traceable UTZ certified cocoa in the form of a chocolate bar.

Competitions in Patriotic songs


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encourage emerging young talents that need to be noticed and nurtured. By organizing such enriching events as the World Musical Day, Infunity Center aims to celebrate the importance of music in our lives and to highlight its positive effects on our souls. Furthermore, it focuses on delivering the message that believing in ourselves is the key to achieving all our goals, and that ambition is the path to success. The Infunity Entertainment Center offered a wide range of entertaining activities, and hosts a variety of new games suitable for all age groups. Thus, it is considered as the largest family entertainment center in Kuwait. It is also equipped with private party rooms (2 fully fit up rooms) where children can celebrate all their birthdays and special events.

IKEA releases sustainability report 2011

Aware Diwaniya he AWARE Center cordially invites interested Western expatriates to its diwaniya presentation entitled, “You and the environment: how can you make a difference?” by Dr Mohammed Al-Furgi. Environmental issues are sometimes classified as academic or elite issues and we may feel that we as individuals do not have a role to play. We do have a role to play in improving our environment and an important one indeed. We (the individuals) are by far the majority and we are the ones that dictate what will happen to our environment. We are targeted as consumers and by making the right choice we could force the producers to change their products. Kuwait a country with a relatively small population but high consumption rate suffers from environmental problems, and we as citizens or residents could make a difference in alleviating these problems through simple practices. What can citizens and residents do to reduce littering and conserve water and energy? In his 25-minute presentation, Alforgi will discuss these questions and many more. Dr. Alforgi graduated from the University of Tulsa, Tulsa Oklahoma with a B.Sc. in Petroleum Engineering and an M.S. in engineering management. He also holds a Ph.D. in Petroleum Engineering from the University of Wyoming, USA. Dr. Alforgi has taught petroleum engineering at the College of Technological Studies in Kuwait, as well as at universities in Libya, the United Arab Emirates and Wyoming. He was a chairman of the Department of Petroleum Engineering Technology, at the College of Technological Studies. He wrote several papers on petroleum economics and takes deep interest in socio-economic changes that occur due to this particular resource.

ties in order to surpass their handicaps and be able to integrate into the society. Infunity Entertainment Center, in cooperation with Commercial Bank of Kuwait has taken this initiative to help children improve their musical abilities and to

ood news for kids still here during the summer vacations. You can join up with me to learn some tricks, tips and how to play Scrabble the right way! Need to know more? Then register with me Rohaina at 66634224 or at


You will be given Scrabble boards and have loads of fun games, mind games and quizzes. If this sounds fun, then call soon. Classes will end on July 26th. Classes are on Thursdays ONLY and from 2.30 - 4.00 pm. Loads of fun and games in store.

Conditions apply: 1) The competitions are meant for all the Schools located in Kuwait and should be nominated by school authority. 2) Each school can select group of 7 students for the “PATRIOTIC SONGS (Indian and Kuwaiti)” and nominate separately. 3) Children of above 12 years till 17 years (VII classes to XII classes) are eligible for the contest. But if School is permitted 4) Musical instruments or KARAOKE mixer should be accompanied by the participating students/Children and the school team should operate and select the mixers. 5) Time frame: 7 minutes - Names will be called as “First come” in the Registration. The Event will be held at the auditorium of “Salmiya Indian Model School” on Saturday, 27th October 2012 from 09:30 am onwards. It will be a full day program with fun and full of entertainments. Food-stalls of different Kuwaiti and Indian tastes will installed. Dr. Ghalib Al-Mashoor said in a press release that Invitations for all schools located in various parts of Kuwait are already been sent. Schools under one management but from different locations can also participate in the contest individually. As per the school directory, there 23 Indian schools in Kuwait. The last date of receiving names of the Participants is scheduled on 2nd day of October, 2012 (INDIA’s GHANDI JAYANTHI DAY). The entry is free to all and due to 2nd day of Eid Al-Adha holidays, a large crowd is expected to attend in addition to, Senior Kuwaiti and Indian citizens will also grace the function. All the applications of interest should be sent to: Phone:99430786


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


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

Summer fun at Aqua Park

EMBASSY OF BRAZIL The Embassy of Brazil requests all Brazilian citizens in Kuwait to proceed to the website (Contact Us Form / Fale Conosco) in order to register or update contact information. The Embassy encourages all citizens to do so, including the ones who have already registered in person at the Embassy. The registration process helps the Brazilian Government to contact and assist Brazilians living abroad in case of any emergency.

he Aqua Park launched its summer festival held for the first year in cooperation with Kuwait TV (KTV), featuring several activities and competitions held every Friday for visitors of all ages.



EMBASSY OF BRITAIN Please be advised that the British Embassy Consular Section will be starting online appointment booking for our consular customers from Sunday, July 1, 2012. All information including how to make an appointment will be available on the embassy website from June 24, 2012. You will also be able to book appointments on the embassy website from June 24, 2012. Please be aware that from July 1, 2012, we will no longer accept walk-in customers. We will provide regular updates every Thursdays throughout June. For the latest FCO travel advice please visit: ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF KOREA The Embassy of the Republic of Korea wishes to inform that it has moved to Mishref. New Address: Embassy of the Republic of Korea Mishref, Block 7A, Diplomatic Area 2, Plot 6 The Embassy also wishes to inform that it will be opened to the public on the following office hours: Saturday to Thursday Morning: 8:00 am to 12:30 pm Lunch Break: 12:30 pm to 1:00 pm Afternoon: 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF KENYA The Embassy of the Republic of Kenya wishes to inform Kenyan residents throughout Kuwait and the general public that with effect from June 1, 2012 the Embassy has moved from its current location to a new location in Surra Block 1, Street 8, Villa 303. Please note that the new telephone and fax numbers will be communicated as soon as possible. For enquiries you can contact Consular Section on mobile 90935162 or 97527306. ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF MEXICO The Embassy of Mexico is pleased to inform that it is located in CLIFFS Complex, Villa 6, Salmiya, block 9, Baghdad street, Jadda Lane 7. The working hours for consular issues are from 9:00 to 12:00 Sunday through Thursday. The reception is closed from 14:00 to 15:00 hours for lunch break. The Embassy of Mexico kindly requests all Mexicans citizens in Kuwait to proceed to the e-mail: in order to register or update contact information. Other consultations or/and appointments could be done by telephone or fax: (+965) 2573 1952 ■■■■■■■

International Women’s Group-Kuwait he members of the International Women’s GroupKuwait met Hassawi to present him with a shield of appreciation for his generosity shown to the International Women’s Group.


EMBASSY OF MYANMAR Embassy of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar would like to inform the general public that the Embassy has moved its office to new location at Villa 35, Road 203, Block 2, AlSalaam Area in South Surra. The Embassy wishes to advice Myanmar citizens and travellers to Myanmar to contact Myanmar Embassy at its new location. Tel. 25240736, 25240290, Fax: 25240749, ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF NEPAL The Embassy of Nepal has moved to a new location in Jabriya, Block 8, St. 13, House No. 514, effective from 15th April, 2012. Till the new telephone connections are installed, the Embassy may be contacted by email: ■■■■■■■

Arbab E Fikr O Fun rbab e Fikr o Fun, a renowned association of Urdu poets in Kuwait, deeply involved in the field of Urdu literature, held the General Body Meeting on June 2012 at Echo Restaurant, Farwaniya to discuss various matters concerning the activities of association and to elect new Executive Committee of the association. The meeting was presided over by Mussarat Jabin Zeba; one of the senior most Urdu poetess; an ‘Aapaa’ figure to all the members and was attended by Afroz Alam, Asgar Ali Ejaz Chisti, Ashraf Zia, Bader Sernab, Burhaan Sayeed, Easa Baloch, Iqbal Nafisi, Khalid Akbar, Masood Flassaas, Dr. Mushtaq Kadri, Naseem Zahid, Sabir Omar, Safdar Ali Safdar, Sayeed Nazar Kadpavi, Shahid Hinai, Sunil Sonsi, Tariq Mahmood and Prof. Tasleern Akbar Shah. The meeting started with Kalaam e Pak; verses from Holy Qur’aan by Dr. Mushtaq Kadri and recitation of ‘Naat’ by Safdar All Safdar, followed by opening speech by Prof.


Tasleem Akbar Shah. During the meeting, the performance of the association was discussed in details wherein the achievements & shortcomings of the association were highlighted by all present members and action plans for further improvement were also discussed and finalized. Dr. Mushtaq Kadri was the Election Commissioner for selecting the office bearers for forthcoming session. The following members were unanimously selected as the office bearers: President: Safdar Ali Safdar Vice President: Sunil Sonsi General Secretary: Bader Semab All the members of the former committee conveyed their support to the new office bearers for the progress of the forum. This support was reciprocated by the new office bearers with their heartiest thanks. The meeting was concluded with exchange of pleasantries among the members.

EMBASSY OF NIGERIA The Nigerian embassy has its new office in Mishref. Block 3, Street 7, House 4. For enquires please call 25379541. Fax25387719. Email- or ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF THAILAND The Royal Thai Embassy in Kuwait, wishes to invite the Kuwaiti companies that deal business with Thai companies or those agencies of Thai commercial companies to visit the Embassy’s Commercial Office to register their relevant information to be part of the embassy’s business and trade database. The Royal Thai Embassy is located in Jabriya, Block 6, Street 8, Villa No. 1, Telephone No. 25317530 -25317531, Ext: 14. ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF UKRAINE We’d like to inform you that in response to the increasing number of our citizens who work in the state and the need for 24-hour operational telephone in case of emergency the Embassy of Ukraine in the State of Kuwait has opened “hotline telephone number” - (+ 965) 972-79-206.

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


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

Untamed & Uncut Extreme Animals Wildest Arctic Monster Bug Wars Wildest Africa Great Ocean Adventures Dogs/Cats/Pets 101 Escape To Chimp Eden Growing Up... Dick ‘n’ Dom Go Wild Breed All About It Cats Of Claw Hill Mutant Planet Animal Precinct Animal Cops Philadelphia Pet Passport Pet Passport Bondi Vet Wildlife SOS Mutant Planet Cheetah Kingdom Dick ‘n’ Dom Go Wild Project Puppy Jeff Corwin Unleashed Dogs 101 Your Very First Puppy Wildlife SOS Bondi Vet Escape To Chimp Eden Predator’s Prey Natural World Must Love Cats Ned Bruha: Skunk Whisperer Animal Cops Miami

00:15 Gok’s Clothes Roadshow 01:05 MasterChef Australia 05:50 Gok’s Clothes Roadshow 06:40 DIY SOS 07:05 Living In The Sun 08:00 MasterChef Australia 09:10 Bargain Hunt 09:55 Antiques Roadshow 10:45 Come Dine With Me 11:35 10 Years Younger 12:25 Gok’s Fashion Fix 14:05 Fantasy Homes By The Sea 14:50 Bargain Hunt 15:35 Antiques Roadshow 16:25 DIY SOS 16:50 The Boss Is Coming To Dinner 17:10 Come Dine With Me 18:00 Masterchef: The Professionals 19:25 James Martin’s Favourite Feasts 19:50 Antiques Roadshow 20:40 Gok’s Fashion Fix 22:15 Bargain Hunt 23:00 Antiques Roadshow 23:50 Come Dine With Me

00:10 00:35 01:00 01:25 01:50 02:15 02:40 03:00 03:25 03:50 04:15 04:40 05:00 05:25 05:50 06:00 06:30 06:55 07:20 07:45 08:00 08:25 08:50 09:15 09:40 10:05 10:25 10:50 11:15 11:40

Duck Dodgers The Perils Of Penelope Pitstop Tom & Jerry Kids A Pup Named Scooby-Doo The Jetsons Puppy In My Pocket Popeye Tom & Jerry Looney Tunes Scooby Doo Where Are You! Droopy: Master Detective Wacky Races The Flintstones A Pup Named Scooby-Doo Popeye Classics Dexters Laboratory Bananas In Pyjamas Baby Looney Tunes Gerald McBoing Boing Ha Ha Hairies Pink Panther And Pals The Garfield Show Dastardly And Muttley A Pup Named Scooby-Doo Scooby Doo Where Are You! The Flintstones Duck Dodgers Tom & Jerry Kids Droopy: Master Detective Wacky Races

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

Jelly Jamm Baby Looney Tunes Ha Ha Hairies The Garfield Show Scooby Doo Where Are You! Dastardly And Muttley Looney Tunes Puppy In My Pocket Pink Panther And Pals Tom & Jerry The Garfield Show The Garfield Show Dexter’s Laboratory Jelly Jamm Baby Looney Tunes Ha Ha Hairies Gerald McBoing Boing Bananas In Pyjamas Pink Panther And Pals Tom & Jerry Looney Tunes Scooby Doo Where Are You!

00:30 Bakugan: New Vestroia 01:20 Powerpuff Girls 02:10 Courage The Cowardly Dog 03:00 The Amazing World Of Gumball 03:25 Ben 10 03:50 Adventure Time 04:15 Powerpuff Girls 04:40 Generator Rex 05:05 Ben 10: Ultimate Alien 05:55 Angelo Rules 06:00 Casper’s Scare School 06:25 Eliot Kid 07:00 The Amazing World Of Gumball 07:15 Adventure Time 07:40 Regular Show 08:05 Grim Adventures Of... 08:55 Courage The Cowardly Dog 09:45 Ben 10: Ultimate Alien 10:35 Powerpuff Girls 11:25 Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated 12:15 Ed, Edd n Eddy 13:05 Ben 10: Alien Force 13:30 Bakugan: Gundalian Invaders 13:55 Camp Lazlo 14:45 Powerpuff Girls 15:35 Angelo Rules 16:25 The Marvelous Misadventures... 16:50 Grim Adventures Of... 17:15 The Amazing World Of Gumball 17:40 Adventure Time 18:05 Regular Show 18:30 Ben 10 18:55 Bakugan: Mechtanium Surge 19:20 Hero 108 19:45 Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated 20:10 Courage The Cowardly Dog 21:00 Ben 10: Alien Force 21:25 The Powerpuff Girls 21:50 Cow And Chicken 22:00 Codename: Kids Next Door 22:50 Ben 10 23:40 Chowder

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Open Court World Sport World Report Backstory Talk Asia Fareed Zakaria Gps CNN Newsroom The CNN Freedom Project The Royals World Sport Inside Africa World Report World Sport The Royals World Business Today Backstory African Voices World One Fareed Zakaria Gps News Stream World Business Today International Desk Global Exchange World Sport African Voices

20:00 International Desk 21:00 Quest Means Business 22:00 Amanpour 22:30 CNN Newscenter 23:00 Connect The World With Becky Anderson

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

X-Machines Hot Rod Apprentice: Hard Mythbusters Ultimate Survival Border Security Auction Kings How Do They Do It? How It’s Made Hillbilly Handfishin’ When Fish Attack River Monsters Border Security Auction Kings Ultimate Survival Hot Rod Apprentice: Hard Wheeler Dealers Gold Rush Mythbusters How Do They Do It? How It’s Made Border Security Auction Kings South Beach Classics Hillbilly Handfishin’ Extreme Fishing River Monsters

00:35 The Future Of... 01:25 Mega World 02:15 Bigger, Better, Faster, Stronger 02:45 Alien Encounters 03:35 Mega World 04:25 Catch It Keep It 05:15 Bigger, Better, Faster, Stronger 05:40 Bigger, Better, Faster, Stronger 06:05 Scrapheap Challenge 07:00 Prophets Of Science Fiction 07:50 Head Rush 07:53 Bang Goes The Theory 08:20 Sci-Fi Science 09:40 Smash Lab 10:30 The Gadget Show 10:55 The Gadget Show 11:20 Man Made Marvels Asia 12:10 Powering The Future 13:00 The Future Of... 13:50 Through The Wormhole With Morgan Freeman 14:45 Smash Lab 15:35 The Gadget Show 16:00 Head Rush 16:03 Bang Goes The Theory 16:30 Sci-Fi Science 17:00 What’s That About? 17:50 Sport Science 18:40 Through The Wormhole With Morgan Freeman 19:30 Brave New World 20:20 Mega World 21:10 The Gadget Show 22:00 Brave New World 22:50 Mega World 23:40 Sport Science

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Replacements Fairly Odd Parents A Kind Of Magic A Kind Of Magic Stitch Replacements Fairly Odd Parents A Kind Of Magic Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Jake & The Neverland Pirates Handy Manny The Hive Mouk Fish Hooks Good Luck Charlie Phineas And Ferb Jessie Austin & Ally

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Radio Rebel Phineas And Ferb Shake It Up A.N.T. Farm Jessie Jessie Good Luck Charlie Wizards Of Waverly Place Wizards Of Waverly Place Phineas And Ferb So Random Frenemies Wizards Of Waverly Place Jessie A.N.T. Farm Good Luck Charlie So Random Radio Rebel Good Luck Charlie Wizards Of Waverly Place Kim Possible

00:55 Style Star 01:25 Beauty Queens Gone Wrong 03:15 E! Investigates 04:10 Sexiest 05:05 Then And Now 06:00 THS 07:50 Behind The Scenes 08:20 E! News 09:15 Kourtney & Kim Take New York 10:15 THS 12:05 Kendra 13:05 Dirty Soap 14:05 Keeping Up With The Kardashians 15:00 Style Star 15:30 E!es 16:25 Behind The Scenes 16:55 Giuliana & Bill 17:55 Kourtney & Kim Take New York 18:55 THS 19:55 Khloe And Lamar 20:55 Keeping Up With The Kardashians 21:25 Ice Loves Coco 22:25 Scouted 23:25 Chelsea Lately 23:55 Keeping Up With The Kardashians

00:05 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 00:30 Reza, Spice Prince Of India 00:55 Restaurant: Impossible 01:45 Grill It! With Bobby Flay 02:35 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 03:25 Meat & Potatoes 03:50 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 04:15 Outrageous Food 04:40 Unwrapped 05:05 United Tastes Of America 05:30 Chopped 06:10 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 06:35 Andy Bates Street Feasts 07:00 Food Network Challenge 07:50 Aarti Party 08:15 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 08:40 Cooking For Real 09:05 Andy Bates Street Feasts 09:30 Lidia’s Italy 09:55 Extra Virgin 10:20 Everyday Italian 10:45 Unwrapped 11:10 United Tastes Of America 11:35 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 12:00 Food Network Challenge 12:50 Grill It! With Bobby Flay 13:15 Cooking For Real 13:40 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 14:05 Everyday Italian 14:30 Unwrapped 14:55 30 Minute Meals 15:20 Extra Virgin 15:45 Chopped 16:35 Cooking For Real 17:00 Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics 17:25 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 17:50 Grill It! With Bobby Flay 18:15 United Tastes Of America 18:40 Reza, Spice Prince Of India 19:05 Extra Virgin 19:30 Food Network Challenge 20:20 Iron Chef America 21:10 Extra Virgin 22:00 Andy Bates Street Feasts 22:50 Gourmet Farmer 23:15 Gourmet Farmer 23:40 Grill It! With Bobby Flay

00:30 Stalked: Someone’s Watching 00:55 I Was Murdered 01:20 American Greed 02:55 Scorned: Crimes Of Passion 03:45 Stalked: Someone’s Watching 04:10 I Was Murdered 04:30 On The Case With Paula Zahn 06:10 Disappeared 07:00 Forensic Detectives 07:50 Murder Shift 08:40 Mystery ER 09:30 Real Emergency Calls 09:55 Who On Earth Did I Marry? 10:20 On The Case With Paula Zahn 11:10 Disappeared 12:00 Street Patrol 12:50 Murder Shift 13:40 Mystery ER 14:30 Real Emergency Calls 14:55 Who On Earth Did I Marry? 15:20 On The Case With Paula Zahn 16:10 Disappeared 17:00 Forensic Detectives 17:50 Undercover 18:40 Real Emergency Calls 19:05 Life Or Death: Medical Mysteries 19:55 Who On Earth Did I Marry? 20:20 On The Case With Paula Zahn 21:10 Disappeared 22:00 I Married A Mobster 22:25 Scorned: Crimes Of Passion 23:15 Deadly Women: Face To Face


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Keeping Up With The Joneses Keeping Up With The Joneses Around The World For Free Departures Banged Up Abroad 62 Days At Sea Into The Drink Keeping Up With The Joneses Around The World For Free

08:00 09:00 10:00 11:00 12:00 13:00 14:00 15:00 16:00 Earth 17:00 18:00 19:00 20:00 21:00 22:00 23:00

Departures Banged Up Abroad 62 Days At Sea Into The Drink Keeping Up With The Joneses Around The World For Free Extreme Expeditions Banged Up Abroad Race To The Bottom of The Into The Drink Keeping Up With The Joneses Destination Extreme Don’t Tell My Mother City Chase Marrakech Treks In A Wild World Endurance Travelle

00:00 Homecoming-18 02:00 Four Brothers-18 04:00 Let Me In-R 06:00 The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen-PG15 08:00 Wild Bill-PG15 09:45 Alive-PG15 12:00 Inside Out-PG15 14:00 Wild Bill-PG15 16:00 In The Line Of Fire-PG15 18:15 Inside Out-PG15 20:00 Child’s Play 2-18 22:00 Thick As Thieves-18

01:00 Older Than America-PG15 03:00 According To Greta-PG15 05:00 16 To Life-PG15 07:00 Stonehenge ApocalypsePG15 09:00 According To Greta-PG15 11:00 Coyote County Loser-PG15 13:00 Bound By A Secret-PG15 15:00 Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil-PG 17:00 Jumping The Broom-PG15 19:00 Dear John-PG15 21:00 Paranormal Activity 2-18 23:00 Take Me Home Tonight-18

ROAD TO PERDITION ON OSN MOVIES ACTION 00:00 Napoleon Dynamite 00:30 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart 01:00 The Colbert Report 02:30 Angry Boys 03:00 The Simpsons 03:30 Last Man Standing 05:30 Til Death 07:00 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 08:30 The Simpsons 09:00 Til Death 09:30 Two And A Half Men 13:00 Til Death 14:00 Last Man Standing 15:00 Two And A Half Men 15:30 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart 16:00 The Colbert Report 17:00 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 18:00 The Simpsons 18:30 Raising Hope 19:00 Traffic Light 19:30 Happy Endings 20:00 Community 20:30 King Of The Hill 21:00 The Daily Show Global Edition 21:30 The Colbert Report Global Edition 22:00 Louie 22:30 American Dad 23:00 American Dad 23:30 Community

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

Bones Burn Notice Top Gear (US) Covert Affairs Lights Out The View Good Morning America Franklin & Bash Emmerdale Coronation Street The Martha Stewart Show The View Bones Covert Affairs Live Good Morning America Franklin & Bash Emmerdale Coronation Street Suits Justified Missing Luck True Blood

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

Unforgettable Top Gear (US) Burn Notice Bones Covert Affairs C.S.I. Miami Unforgettable Emmerdale Coronation Street Body Of Proof Top Gear (US) Bones Burn Notice Emmerdale Coronation Street Body Of Proof Unforgettable Emmerdale Coronation Street Body Of Proof Suits Justified Missing Luck Rescue Me

01:00 Road To Perdition-18 03:00 Hustle And Flow-18 05:00 Dread-18 07:00 Red Faction: Origins-PG15 09:00 Returner-PG15 11:00 Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within-PG 13:00 Taxi-PG15 15:00 Returner-PG15 17:00 Friday Night Lights-PG15 19:00 13 Assassins-18 21:15 Quarantine 2: Terminal-18 23:00 Outcast-R

00:00 Death At A Funeral-PG15 02:00 My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend04:00 My Best Friend’s Wedding 06:00 Elevator Girl-PG15 08:00 My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend 10:00 Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie-PG15 12:00 Cats & Dogs-PG 14:00 Vice Versa-PG 16:00 Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie-PG15 18:00 Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story-PG15

01:00 03:00 05:00 07:00 09:00 11:15 13:00 15:00 17:15 19:00 21:00 23:00

Proteger & Servir-18 2:22-18 The Thirteenth Floor-18 9-PG Another Year-PG15 The Greatest-PG15 South Solitary-PG15 Another Year-PG15 Oceans - Into The Deep-PG Gilles’ Wife-PG15 Yona Yona Penguin-PG Stand By Me-18

00:00 Rh+ The Vampire Of Seville 02:00 Christmas In New York-PG 04:00 Zorro’s Secrets-PG 06:00 Rh+ The Vampire Of Seville 08:00 The Three Bears: The Amazing Adventurers-FAM 10:00 The Lucky Dragon-PG 12:00 Rainbow Valley Heroes-PG15 14:00 Zorro’s Secrets-PG 16:00 The Three Musketeers (2008) 18:00 The Lucky Dragon-PG 20:00 Scooby-Doo! Curse Of The Lake Monster-PG

00:30 03:30 05:30 06:30 07:00 10:00 11:00 12:00 14:00 17:00 20:00 21:00 21:30

Cricket Twenty20 NRL Premiership Volvo Ocean Race Highlights Futbol Mundial Cricket Twenty20 Volvo Ocean Race Highlights Trans World Sport Live NRL Premiership Masters Football Cricket Twenty20 Volvo Ocean Race Highlights Futbol Mundial Live Super League

00:00 AFL Premiership 02:30 Futbol Mundial 03:00 International Rugby Union 07:00 Trans World Sport 08:00 PGA European Tour 12:30 AFL Premiership 17:00 International Rugby Union 19:00 Super Rugby Highlights 20:00 PGA European Tour Highlights 21:00 WWE SmackDown 23:00 Volvo Ocean Race Highlights

00:30 Total Rugby 01:00 World Triathlon Series 03:00 NRL Premiership 05:00 International Rugby Union 07:00 Golfing World 08:00 NRL Premiership 10:00 ITU World Triathlon Series 12:30 Golfing World 13:30 Triathlon 16:00 IRB Junior World Championship 2012 18:00 Golfing World 19:00 AFL Premiership Highlights 20:00 ITU World Triathlon Series 22:30 AFL Premiership Highlights 23:30 IRB Junior World Championship 2012

00:30 V8 Supercars Highlights 01:30 Mobil 1 The Grid 02:00 UFC 147 Prelims

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UFC 147 WWE Bottom Line WWE Experience Prizefighter V8 Supercars Extra V8 Supercars WWE SmackDown UFC 147 Prelims UFC 147 UFC Unleashed

THE HISTORY CHANNEL 00:00 Scots At War 01:00 Bomb Hunters 03:00 Scots At War 04:00 The Universe 05:00 Ancient Aliens 06:00 Decoded 07:00 American Pickers 08:00 The Universe 09:00 Soviet Storm: WWII In The East 10:00 American Pickers 11:00 Ax Men 12:00 Bomb Hunters 14:00 Soviet Storm: WWII In The East 15:00 The Universe 16:00 Bomb Hunters 18:00 Soviet Storm: WWII In The East 19:00 The Universe 20:00 American Pickers 21:00 Ax Men 22:00 IRT: Deadliest Roads – The Andes 23:00 Pawn Stars 23:30 Pawn Stars

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

Wicked Fit Fashion Classics Open House Videofashion Daily Videofashion News How Do I Look? Whose Wedding Is It Anyway? Married Away Clean House Videofashion News Videofashion News Videofashion Daily Open House Fashion Classics How Do I Look? Whose Wedding Is It Anyway? Clean House: New York Dress My Nest Mel B: It’s A Scary World Bridalplasty How Do I Look? Kimora: Life In The Fab Lane Big Rich Texas Big Rich Texas The Amandas The Amandas Kimora: Life In The Fab Lane Kimora: Life In The Fab Lane The Amandas Fashion Police

00:00 World’s Greatest Motorcycle Rides 01:00 Think Green 02:00 Dirt Biking New Zealand 03:00 Megalopolis 04:00 Globe Trekker 05:00 Planet Food 06:00 Floyd Uncorked 06:30 Floyd Uncorked 07:00 Globe Trekker 08:00 World’s Greatest Motorcycle Rides 09:00 Dirt Biking New Zealand 10:00 Inside Luxury Travel-Varun Sharma 11:00 Hollywood And Vines 11:30 Hollywood And Vines 12:00 Globe Trekker 13:00 Feast India 13:30 Feast India 14:00 Planet Food 15:00 Dirt Biking New Zealand 16:00 Globe Trekker 17:00 Floyd Uncorked 17:30 Floyd Uncorked 18:00 Inside Luxury Travel-Varun Sharma 19:00 Globe Trekker 20:00 Distant Shores 20:30 Essential

00:15 02:00 04:15 07:00 08:55 11:10 13:00 14:50 16:45 18:30 20:35 22:00

Shaft In Africa The Prize-PG Quo Vadis-PG The Hucksters-PG Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo-PG Come Fly With Me-FAM High Society-FAM Escape To Victory-PG The Wheeler Dealers-FAM Young Bess-FAM The Honeymoon Machine Gone With The Wind-PG

00:15 Little Einsteins 00:40 Jungle Junction 00:55 Jungle Junction 01:10 Little Einsteins 01:30 Special Agent Oso 01:45 Special Agent Oso 02:00 Lazytown 02:25 Little Einsteins 02:50 Jungle Junction 03:05 Jungle Junction 03:20 Little Einsteins 03:40 Special Agent Oso 03:55 Special Agent Oso 04:10 Lazytown 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 Lazytown 07:45 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 08:10 The Hive 08:20 Jake & The Neverland Pirates 08:35 Jake & The Neverland Pirates 08:50 The Little Mermaid 09:15 Mini Adventures Of Winnie The Pooh 09:20 Mouk 09:35 Mouk 09:45 The Hive 09:55 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 10:20 Lazytown 10:45 Art Attack 11:10 Imagination Movers 11:35 Lazytown 12:00 The Hive 12:10 Handy Manny 12:25 Jungle Junction 12:40 Imagination Movers 13:05 The Hive 13:15 Special Agent Oso 13:30 Lazytown 13:55 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 14:20 The Hive 14:30 Handy Manny 14:45 Jake & The Neverland Pirates 15:00 Jake & The Neverland Pirates 15:15 The Hive 15:25 Handy Manny 15:40 Jake & The Neverland Pirates 15:55 Imagination Movers 16:20 Lazytown 16:45 Art Attack 17:10 Handy Manny 17:25 Jake & The Neverland Pirates 17:40 Jake & The Neverland Pirates 17:55 Jake & The Neverland Pirates 18:10 Little Einsteins 18:35 The Little Mermaid 19:00 Mini Adventures Of Winnie The Pooh 19:05 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 19:25 101 Dalmatians 19:40 Mouk 19:50 Jake & The Neverland Pirates 20:05 Jake & The Neverland Pirates 20:20 The Hive 20:30 Mini Adventures Of Winnie The Pooh 20:35 A Poem Is... 20:40 Animated Stories 20:45 Mouk 21:00 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 21:25 Jake & The Neverland Pirates 21:40 Special Agent Oso 21:55 Little Einsteins 22:20 Timmy Time 22:30 Jungle Junction 22:45 Handy Manny 22:55 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 23:20 Special Agent Oso

Classifieds MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012




Time 0:15 0:20 0:50 1:45 2:10 2:20 2:25 2:30 2:50 2:55 3:10 3:20 3:25 3:55 4:10 4:35 4:55 5:00 6:00 6:15 6:30 6:40 7:15 7:45 7:50 8:05 8:20 8:25 8:30 8:45 9:00 9:20 9:30 9:35 9:45 10:00 10:15 10:55 11:05 11:25 12:00 12:25 13:30 13:40 13:40 13:45 14:00 14:15 14:20 14:25 14:30 14:55 15:00 15:00 15:05 15:05 15:15 15:55 15:55 16:00 16:10 16:35 16:40 16:55 17:10 17:20 17:20 17:30 17:40 17:45 17:50 18:05 18:10 18:15 18:40 18:40 18:45 18:45 19:00 19:10 19:20 19:25 19:30 19:35 19:40 20:00 20:15 20:25 20:35 20:45 20:55 21:15 21:15 21:20 21:20 21:25 21:30 21:35 22:00 22:10 22:25 22:35 22:40 22:55 22:55 23:10 23:35 23:40 23:40 23:45



Time 0:05 0:20 0:25 0:30 0:35 0:50 1:10 2:15 2:45 3:40 3:45 3:50 3:55 4:05 4:20 4:50 5:40 6:00 6:50 6:55 7:05 7:10 7:30 8:10 8:20 8:25 8:25 9:00 9:05 9:20 9:35 9:40 10:00 10:05 10:05 10:15 10:25 10:45 11:15 11:30 11:45 11:55 12:15 12:25 12:30 13:00 13:10 13:20 14:25 14:25 14:30 15:00 15:05 15:10 15:15 15:45 15:45 15:50 15:50 15:55 16:15 16:25 16:30 16:35 16:55 17:20 17:30 17:45 18:05 18:20 18:20 18:25 18:30 18:35 18:50 19:05 19:10 19:25 19:30 20:00 20:05 20:10 20:15 20:35 20:40 20:50 21:05 21:15 21:25 21:25 21:30 21:35 21:45 21:50 21:55 22:05 22:10 22:20 22:25 22:35 22:40 22:45 23:00 23:00 23:05 23:10 23:30 23:40 23:45 23:50

Directorate General of Civil Aviation Home Page (

ACCOMMODATION Single bachelor accommodation available in Abbassiya double bedroom flat on 1st July, rent KD 40. Contact: 99162583. (C 4054) Sharing accommodation available for decent bachelor non smoking, Amman street, opposite to Al Rashid hospital. Contact: 66232356. (C 4055) 24-6-2012 Sharing accommodation available for bachelor with Pakistani (non-smoking), near K.P.T Round About, Hassawi. Contact: 99792546. (C 4052) Room available in New Riggae in a central AC flat for single, non-smoker, south Indian executive bachelor. Contact. 99515956. 22-6-2012

SITUATION VACANT Full time live out maid/nanny for three months, starting mid July. Must have own residency. Work from 7am to 7pm, Saturday - Thursday in Salwa. Call 97687172 for interview. 25-6-2012 A multinational company in Africa is looking for an experienced Human Resources/Personnel Manager. Salary will be paid in US dollars - with other incentives. Be ready to relocate to Africa. Indian, Christian, Keralite (pre ferred). Send CV with 3 letters of recommendation to 24-6-2012

CHANGE OF NAME It is hereby notified for the information of all concerned authorities and the public that I, Rajee Ramanathan Koolathu, Punaroor House, Panniyaly, Omalloor P.O., Pathanamthitta, Kerala, Pin - 689647, holder of Passport No. K 1677756 issued on 03-11-2011 by the Passport

Officer, Thiruvananthapuram, have embraced Islam Religion with a new name Fathima Raja K. Hereafter I will be a member of Islam Religion and will be known by the name Fathima Raja K. only and will sign accordingly. This change will come into effect in all records related to me. 25-6-2012 I, Joseph Mathew Thamarakkatte holder of Indian passport No. E5415197 change my name as Mathew Joseph Thamarakkatte. (C 4053) 22-6-2012

SITUATION WANTED Accountant, MBA Finance with 5 years of experience looking for part-time job; can prepare your all business accounting reports and financial statements independently. Call: 55829223 or Email: (C 4049) 22-5-2012

MATRIMONIAL Proposal invited for a Keralite Christian Jacobite girl (BAMS/26 years/157cms/fair) Ayurvedic Doctor working in Kuwait, looking for professionals working in Kuwait. Contact: (C 4051)

No: 15489

Prayer timings Fajr: Duhr: Asr: Maghrib: Isha:

03:15 11:51 15:25 18:52 20:24

Ministry of Interior website:


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

stars CROSSWORD 716



Aries (March 21-April 19) These next years are the ones in which you should plan to work hard to bring out and give shape to the ideas and training you have enjoyed. You are beginning to move forward in your personal projects. You could be learning all about flying a plane, riding a horse or painting a picture. There is an obvious growing self-confidence. In summary, from this time forward, expect a more confident, outgoing attitude, for you have brought to close a time of inward examination and learning. A growing sense of direction and self-worth will find you reaching out to become better educated and perhaps to teach. Your positivism lets you get right to the point—you have little patience with those who are lazy. You are happy to encourage others.

Taurus (April 20-May 20) Your daily interaction with others seems to be a bit more relaxed today. Working in groups is expected today. Different views and opinions are what make the results of some project a beneficial one. This is a time marked by a more intense focus on mental and communicative activity than you may ever have experienced before. This is a time of focus and gathering information and a time when you are apt to be most productive; you will be pleased with the results of your efforts. Also, you will be pleased with the many opportunities that will open up to you soon regarding travel. This is a time to broaden your horizons both intellectually and spiritually. Education, publishing, broadcasting, legal and political interests offer opportunities.

POOCH CAFE ACROSS 1. A state-chartered savings bank owned by its depositors and managed by a board of trustees. 4. United States comedian and film actor (1880-1946). 10. And nothing more. 13. (informal) Of the highest quality. 14. National capital of Kiribati. 15. A transuranic element. 16. A pilgrimage to Mecca. 18. Neckwear consisting of a long narrow piece of material worn (mostly by men) under a collar and tied in knot at the front. 20. A public promotion of some product or service. 21. An officer who acts as military assistant to a more senior officer. 23. (in Gnosticism) A divine power or nature emanating from the Supreme Being and playing various roles in the operation of the universe. 26. A small tent used as a dressing room beside the sea or a swimming pool. 28. A folded part (as a fold of skin or muscle). 30. A bivalent and trivalent metallic element of the rare earth group. 31. A rare silvery (usually trivalent) metallic element. 34. Worn or shabby from overuse or (of pages) from having corners turned down. 36. A sudden loss of consciousness resulting when the rupture or occlusion of a blood vessel leads to oxygen lack in the brain. 37. An official prosecutor for a judicial district. 39. A white metallic element that burns with a brilliant light. 40. A radioactive element of the actinide series. 41. Of or relating to or near the sacrum. 45. The blood group whose red cells carry both the A and B antigens. 46. A state in northwestern North America. 50. The superior of a group of nuns. 54. Having or provided with a belt. 55. A Russian prison camp for political prisoners. 58. Jordan's port. 59. A period marked by distinctive character or reckoned from a fixed point or event. 60. A state in southeastern India on the Bay of Bengal (south of Andhra Pradesh). 63. (British) Your grandmother. 64. A light touch or stroke. 65. At risk of or subject to experiencing something usually unpleasant. 66. A loose sleeveless outer garment made from aba cloth. DOWN 1. A member of the Siouan people formerly living in the Missouri river valley in NE Nebraska. 2. Any of a number of fishes of the family Carangidae. 3. A piece of furniture that provides a place to sleep. 4. A linear unit of length equal to 12 inches or a third of a yard. 5. The United Nations agency concerned with atomic energy. 6. A trivalent metallic element of the rare earth group. 7. Soviet physicist who worked on low temperature physics (1908-1968). 8. A person of unquestioning obedience. 9. An enclosed space. 10. Genus of East Indian trees or shrubs. 11. Type genus of the family Unionidae. 12. At a specific prior time. 17. The liquid part that can be extracted from fruits and vegetables. 19. Valuable fiber plant of East Indies now widespread in cultivation. 22. Made agreeably cold (especially by ice). 24. English theoretical physicist who applied relativity theory to quantum mechanics and predicted the existence of antimatter and the positron (1902-1984). 25. A genus of Ploceidae. 27. Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey). 29. Rock that in its molten form (as magma) issues from volcanos. 32. An independent agency of the United States government responsible for collecting and coordinating intelligence and counterintelligence activities abroad in the national interest. 33. Resinlike substance secreted by certain lac insects. 35. The seventh month of the Moslem calendar. 38. By bad luck. 42. Fertility goddess in ancient Greek mythology. 43. One of several parallel sloping beams that support a roof. 44. Remote city of Kazakhstan that (ostensibly for security reasons) was made the capital in 1998. 47. Property that is leased or rented out or let. 48. Cubes of meat marinated and cooked on a skewer usually with vegetables. 49. A city in southern Turkey on the Seyhan River. 51. A Chadic language spoken south of Lake Chad. 52. Divulge information or secrets. 53. (computer science) A standardized language for the descriptive markup of documents. 56. A federal agency established to regulate the release of new foods and health-related products. 57. Someone who engages in arbitrage (who purchases securities in one market for immediate resale in another in the hope of profiting from the price differential). 61. The branch of computer science that deal with writing computer programs that can solve problems creatively. 62. A silvery ductile metallic element found primarily in bauxite.

Gemini (May 21-June 20) You may feel like being different and like trying something new and unusual today. This is a perfect time for new ideas and breakthrough thinking—a novel approach. You have the mind of a lawyer, always able to size up a problem and come up with a solution. However, do not go against tradition or become too independent for group approval. You could become carried away and make mistakes. Using your mind to negotiate obstacles and handle dilemmas is a great talent. You have an innate ability to guide and lead others through the hurdles and hassles of life and you will use this ability several times today. This could be in a meeting with young people, or in some form of guidance or in playing a game. A slow and patient attitude is the key.

Cancer (June 21-July 22) This is an easy and calm day that should find everything running in a smooth manner. Ideas and interaction with older people may be in the forecast. Working with—rather than against—the flow should be easy to do. There are opportunities for self-expression through a cause or purpose. You could be most persuasive with others and expressive in speech and communication. You appreciate what is fair and democratic and feel most happy in a group or community. Some fun and economically rewarding family involvement is coming. There may be a group art show, garage sale or real estate transaction this afternoon—and perhaps through the weekend. There are many opportunities to enhance and deepen a love relationship tonight.


Leo (July 23-August 22) You may find it very easy to overdo or work at cross purposes. This can result in a stressful day, if you are not careful. There is a sense of testing the limits. Making lists and checking off the completed chore as you move throughout the day will be most helpful. Your home environment, friends and surroundings in general are energized—there is new encouragement. For this week, you should be alert to the fine art of balancing your work or career with the rest of your life. Money matters will probably smooth out soon but not without a few surprises. Your commitment to making things work and solving problems to the best result is commendable—congratulations. Enjoy some fun activity this afternoon. Perhaps a bicycle ride or swimming is in order.


Virgo (August 23-September 22) Take a little trip, or get outside for a while today. You may want to break your routine and try something new or different. You may discover insights into day-to-day problems that will be of great value to you at a later time. Perhaps you are a little too serious today. Essentials are what count, but this afternoon you may decide to spend a little money on yourself—perhaps some new clothing. You like to keep to yourself and tend to avoid loud surroundings; you may enjoy an event that is focused on some particular hobby or interest. Attending a special social gathering this evening could be loads of fun and add a little in some way to your professional life. Networking is possible and new business is probable. Things you say mean a lot.

Libra (September 23-October 22)


Scorpio (October 23-November 21) Life seems fast and furious but today may be the exception. You may decide to reclaim a little balance in your week by enjoying a slower-paced morning . . . perhaps a little tea or the morning news or a little Internet chatter. If you are in your own home you could enjoy your yard as well as plan your next project in this environment. Upcoming guests from out-of-town may have been the instigator for all your previous work—you can enjoy a little break. A new area for an herb garden may come to mind and some research on types of herbs, placement, etc., might be part of the fun. Your thirst for understanding and experience always keeps you motivated. This day is fun and the less you involve yourself with activity the more you will enjoy the day.

Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) You will find your mind beginning to turn away from the external and the material at this time. You become concerned with more inward and spiritual ideas. All of this will become clear over the next several years. This time marks a change of direction for you, away from the material and glitter, toward inner needs and security. These years should be easy and filled with opportunities and friendships; enjoy them. More demanding and inward years will be coming a little further on down the road. Close personal ties to other people are a focal point for your feelings—marriage and other partnerships could be a key focus. Your inner resources and emotions are accented this evening. Expect a sense of good will from those around you. Smile

Capricorn (December 22-January 19)


Yesterday’s Solution

This is a good time to think about how your future is taking shape. You will prosper by pursuing your dreams of where you have always wanted to work and be expressive. Don’t be afraid to project your image. Ideas of group cooperation and communion—mass images—could further your career as well. Your organizational abilities and sense of responsibility will be what guides you and proves successful. One of the ways these talents develop is the work and time you can put forth with a volunteer service or in serving a political office in your community. Religion, truth and the world of philosophy and ideas are of interest to you and you may be reading and researching quite a lot this afternoon. A quiet evening to read and contemplate is appreciated.

Business is positive and opportunities to improve your financial status come to your attention. This could mean you own a little business and it is doing quite well. Consider adding a specialty addition to your shop to attract people into your little place of business. This might be a person that sells a catchy item that looks good on a shelf or desk; perhaps a fish and bowl or flowers or a new fad type of thing. This will pull more people into your store to look around and make you a little richer. Spending some time with friends later this evening may provide some interesting conversations. Someone has a vision or what they think may be a psychic dream and may talk a great deal about their experience. You could find yourself looking for a good dream dictionary.

Yesterday’s Solution Yester

Aquarius (January 20- February 18) Your mind runs to domestic issues; home and family are always on your mind. You could publish your own newsletter, do editorial or legal work, do freelance writing or proof books for publishers. Better yet, you could publish a small paper that gives people ideas for creative projects. You have a fine sense of appreciation and are very attentive to other’s needs. You love to help and take care of the young or handicapped, expressing a first-rate sense of compassion. You possess an almost infinite ability to respond to the needs and demands of others. Do not forget your own needs—make sure you are doing something for yourself. Travel is a wonderful possibility. If you are not getting ready to travel, you will be planning a trip soon.

Pisces (February 19-March 20)

Word Sleuth Solution

You may find yourself feeling blocked, particularly in a group situation. Something fun that you may be looking forward to in your personal life may be something you have looked forward to for quite a while. You may realize you are a follower instead of a leader. There are many ways to learn the lessons of life and if you want to stay in this group, you may decide to help the best you can. A friend or relative may be visiting this afternoon. You will probably want to invite some other people that are familiar with your visitors in order to bring up fun memories. There is time to enjoy and appreciate your ties to others and to seek and promote harmony in the interaction between people. There is plenty of laughter tonight.

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

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
















Abdullah Salim




Industrial Shuwaikh






Bneid Al-Ghar






Ayoun Al-Kibla

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

Salmiya-Hamad Mubarak St Salmiya-Amman St Hawally-Beirut St Hawally & Rawdha Coop Jabriya-Block 1A Jabriya-Block 3B Salmiya-Hamad Mubarak St Mishrif Coop Salwa Coop

25726265 25647075 22625999 22564549 25340559 25326554 25721264 25380581 25628241


Tel.: e 161




Relatively hot with light to moderate freshening gradually at times north westerly wind, with speed of 15 - 40 km/h with dust subsiding gradually


Hot with moderate to fresh north westerly wind, with speed of 20 - 45 km/h causing raising dust over open areas


No Current Warnings arnin a


42 °C

33 °C



43 °C

30 °C




43 °C

31 °C




44 °C

33 °C




41 °C

28 °C


43 °C

29 °C




43 °C

29 °C

Maidan Hawally



44 °C

30 °C




41 °C

34 °C




37 °C

32 °C




44 °C

28 °C





West Jahra


South Jahra



24/06/2012 1200 UTC

4 DA AY YS FORECAST Temperatures DA AY





Wind Direction

Wind Speed



hot + raising dust

44 °C

30 °C


20 - 45 km/h




45 °C

32 °C


12 - 32 km/h


Wednesday e



44 °C

31 °C


10 - 30 km/h

North Jahra





46 °C

33 °C


10 - 32 km/h

North Jleeb































Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh













Expected Weeather for the Next 24 Hours



2627 - 2630 Ext.: 26


Fax: 24348714


New Jahra










MAX. Temp.



MIN. Temp.

46 °C 34 °C




17 %




03 %



MAX. Wind

N 57 km/h




All times are local time unless otherwise stated.

24/06/12 14:56 UTC


The Public Institution for Social Security

Ministry of Interior

Public Authority of Industry

Public Authority for Civil Information

Prisoners of War Committee

Kuwait News Agency

Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affair

Kuwait Municipality

Ministry of Energy (Oil)

Kuwait Electronic Government

Ministry of Energy (Electricity and Water)

Ministry of Finance

Public Authority for Housing Welfare

Ministry of Commerce and Industry

Ministry of Justice

Ministry of Education

Ministry of Communications

Ministry of Information

Supreme Council for Planning and Development

Kuwait Awqaf Public Foundation

.03 mm V1.00


Afghanistan 0093 Albania 00355 Algeria 00213 Andorra 00376 Angola 00244 Anguilla 001264 Antiga 001268 Argentina 0054 Armenia 00374 Australia 0061 Austria 0043 Bahamas 001242 Bahrain 00973 Bangladesh 00880 Barbados 001246 Belarus 00375 Belgium 0032 Belize 00501 Benin 00229 Bermuda 001441 Bhutan 00975 Bolivia 00591 Bosnia 00387 Botswana 00267 Brazil 0055 Brunei 00673 Bulgaria 00359 Burkina 00226 Burundi 00257 Cambodia 00855 Cameroon 00237 Canada 001 Cape Verde 00238 Cayman Islands 001345 Central African 00236 Chad 00235 Chile 0056 China 0086 Colombia 0057 Comoros 00269 Congo 00242 Cook Islands 00682 Costa Rica 00506 Croatia 00385 Cuba 0053 Cyprus 00357 Cyprus (Northern) 0090392 Czech Republic 00420 Denmark 0045 Diego Garcia 00246 Djibouti 00253 Dominica 001767 Dominican Republic 001809 Ecuador 00593 Egypt 0020 El Salvador 00503 England (UK) 0044 Equatorial Guinea 00240 Eritrea 00291 Estonia 00372 Ethiopia 00251 Falkland Islands 00500 Faroe Islands 00298 Fiji 00679 Finland 00358 France 0033 French Guiana 00594 French Polynesia 00689 Gabon 00241 Gambia 00220 Georgia 00995 Germany 0049 Ghana 00233 Gibraltar 00350 Greece 0030 Greenland 00299 Grenada 001473 Guadeloupe 00590 Guam 001671 Guatemala 00502 Guinea 00224 Guyana 00592 Haiti 00509 Holland (Netherlands) 0031 Honduras 00504 Hong Kong 00852 Hungary 0036 Ibiza (Spain) 0034 Iceland 00354 India 0091 Indian Ocean 00873 Indonesia 0062

Iran 0098 Iraq 00964 Ireland 00353 Italy 0039 Ivory Coast 00225 Jamaica 001876 Japan 0081 Jordan 00962 Kazakhstan 007 Kenya 00254 Kiribati 00686 Kuwait 00965 Kyrgyzstan 00996 Laos 00856 Latvia 00371 Lebanon 00961 Liberia 00231 Libya 00218 Lithuania 00370 Luxembourg 00352 Macau 00853 Macedonia 00389 Madagascar 00261 Majorca 0034 Malawi 00265 Malaysia 0060 Maldives 00960 Mali 00223 Malta 00356 Marshall Islands 00692 Martinique 00596 Mauritania 00222 Mauritius 00230 Mayotte 00269 Mexico 0052 Micronesia 00691 Moldova 00373 Monaco 00377 Mongolia 00976 Montserrat 001664 Morocco 00212 Mozambique 00258 Myanmar (Burma) 0095 Namibia 00264 Nepal 00977 Netherlands (Holland) 0031 Netherlands Antilles 00599 New Caledonia 00687 New Zealand 0064 Nicaragua 00505 Nigar 00227 Nigeria 00234 Niue 00683 Norfolk Island 00672 Northern Ireland (UK) 0044 North Korea 00850 Norway 0047 Oman 00968 Pakistan 0092 Palau 00680 Panama 00507 Papua New Guinea 00675 Paraguay 00595 Peru 0051 Philippines 0063 Poland 0048 Portugal 00351 Puerto Rico 001787 Qatar 00974 Romania 0040 Russian Federation 007 Rwanda 00250 Saint Helena 00290 Saint Kitts 001869 Saint Lucia 001758 Saint Pierre 00508 Saint Vincent 001784 Samoa US 00684 Samoa West 00685 San Marino 00378 Sao Tone 00239 Saudi Arabia 00966 Scotland (UK) 0044 Senegal 00221 Seychelles 00284 Sierra Leone 00232 Singapore 0065 Slovakia 00421 Slovenia 00386 Solomon Islands 00677


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

LIFESTYLE G o s s i p

Garfield made spider man look easy ndrew Garfield made playing Spider-Man look really easy. The 28-year-old star portrays the superhero/Peter Parker in ‘The Amazing SpiderMan’ - which stars his girlfriend Emma Stone as his character’s love interest Gwen Stacy - and director Marc Webb insists the actor didn’t have to work hard at the role even though he thought it was tough. He said: “Andrew was a natural even though he thought he had to work hard to do it but he really was a natural. He could cope with the physical demands of playing Spider-Man.” The movie - which sees Rhys Ifans play Dr. Curt Connors/The Lizard and Martin Sheen as Peter’s Uncle Ben - features a new take on previous incarnations of ‘Spider-Man’ movies with the superhero learning more about why his parents disappeared when he


Kanye arranges dinner

was younger, and Marc believes there are “many more stories” to tell from the comic books. He added to BANG Showbiz: “There are so many more stories to tell from the comics. We haven’t seen him get left behind by his parents before but it was an incredibly dramatic and interesting event and that opens up the story. There are all these new layers that we haven’t seen before, it was great.”

Queen Elizabeth’s

eyonce Knowles and Kim Kardashian enjoyed a dinner arranged by Kanye West on Friday. The 30-year-old singer and the reality star decided to meet up while Jay-Z - who is married to Beyonce and Kanye, who is currently dating Kim, are on the European leg of their Watch TheThrone tour, and the pair managed to get on well despite their different backgrounds. A source told The Sun newspaper: “The girls have never really seen eyeto-eye. It’s a shame because Jay-Z and Kanye are so close. Beyonce has always viewed Kim as a reality TV star who’s not earned her fortune with a specific talent. “Kanye arranged a dinner in the hotel suite for the girls to clear the air. He’s hoping that now they’re pals it will lead to further get-togethers away from the tour. Beyonce has now welcomed Kim into the clan.” Kim - who famously split from sports star Kris Humphries after just 72 days of marriage last year - recently gushed about her new boyfriend Kanye saying he knows “everything” about her. She claimed: “”It’s very comforting to have someone that knows everything about you, that respects you, understands, has gone through the similar things. “I can really relate to his mother passing. He can really relate to my father passing. I mean, there’s so many similarities in our life that ... I feel like I’m at a really happy, good space.”

grand present


ritain’s Queen Elizabeth is giving her grandson Prince William a cottage as a 30th birthday present. The monarch has gifted the home on the Sandringham Estate to William, and he is said to be delighted because it is the location where he and wife Duchess Catherine spent their first Christmas together as a married couple. A source told The Mail on Sunday newspaper: “A property is definitely being made available to William and Kate this year and a plan is in place for William to have his own place on the estate. “He’s a country boy and loves Norfolk, just like his father and his grandparents. It’s a lovely peaceful place and William adores it.” It is not clear which cottage on the sprawling 20,000 acre estate will be made available to the pair. William and Catherine currently live in Anglesey, North Wales, where he works as a search and rescue pilot, and also spend time at Kensington Palace in London. Catherine is believed to be currently redecorating their London home with some assistance from interior designer Kelly Hoppen. A source said: “She’s keen to work with interior designer Kelly Hoppen, but she wants to do a lot herself.”


Pegg does

Styles had

not like 3D

a brief fling

imon Pegg is not a fan of 3D. The ‘Shaun of the Dead’ star doesn’t like to see movies with computer imagery as he feels like it is an “intrusion”. He said: “I’m not a fan of 3D; it generally feels like an intrusion.” However, Simon has quite eclectic taste in films and enjoys everything from comedy to zombie classics. He said: “the last thing I saw was ‘21 Jump Street’ which was very funny. And I was delighted to see ‘The Artist’ do so well. “My all time favorite films include George A Romero’s zombie classics which have been a huge influence and ‘Young Frankenstein’ which I first watched on 16mm film. “I had dinner with Mel Brooks recently and he said he enjoyed ‘Shaun of the Dead’ which was a delight.” Simon is also secretly a fan of ‘The Hunger Games’. He explained to Esquire magazine: “I’ll confess to currently reading ‘The Hunger Games’ to see what the fuss is about. I’ve enjoyed it, actually. I think people assume it’s going to be like ‘Twilight’ which is like reading the diary of a teenage girl - but it’s pretty compelling.”

arry Styles reportedly had a brief fling with a married woman. The One Direction hunk who has previously dated TV presenter Caroline Flack - began flirting with 32-year-old DJ Lucy Horobin after meeting her at a radio station, and their brief romance almost ruined her marriage. A source said: “Lucy was going through a rocky patch with her husband. After only a year of marriage she had doubts over whether she had done the right thing. She had requested taking time out in their relationship and they were virtually leading separate lives. “Harry just happened to be in the right place at the right time. He charmed his way into her life and brought a little bit of excitement with him. Lucy was confused about her feelings for her husband. They were still living in the same house but not actually living as a couple.” However, when the relationship with Harry came to an end in October last year - after three months of dating - she felt she had to confess what had happened to her partner. The source added: “When things fizzled out with Harry, she realized she had made a stupid mistake. She wanted to make a real go of her marriage and decided the only way to do that was to confess about Harry.” Now, the pair are working through their problems and are staying together. The insider added to the Sunday Mirror newspaper: “As you can imagine it was tough. He was mad. She was mortified. “But they are working their way through the troubles and are glad they have decided to stay together.”



Cole and Coyle

try to re-kindle

heryl Cole and Nadine Coyle had a private dinner to get over their frosty relationship. The pair - who are due to reunite with Girls Aloud bandmates Nicola Roberts, Sarah Harding and Kimberley Walsh later this year - enjoyed food at Cheryl’s London house two weeks ago and are now believed to be getting on better than ever. A source said: “Cheryl likes socializing in her own house, it’s more private and she knew it would be a good place for her and Nadine to talk things through in their own space. “Cheryl told Nadine she didn’t want there to be any animosity between them and that it was coming between the Girls Aloud reunion.” Nadine left Cheryl’s house after having dinner and the pair are said to be feeling much better about their relationship - which was left even better after they went on a night out together in London earlier this month. The source added to heat magazine: “The girls know they’re very different people, and they’ll never be best friends. But they’ll put on a united front, and both Cheryl and Nadine are happy they had the chat.”


Lloyd doesn’t plan on being a role model her Lloyd doesn’t want to be a role model. The ‘Swagger Jagger’ singer - who is famed for her outspoken views - says she has no desire for young girls to be influenced by her but does want to show them it’s okay to just be themselves. She said: “I don’t plan to be a role model. I’m not like, ‘Yeah, I can change this, you should be like me.’ But it’s good to think that some girls do look up to me, and hopefully for the right reasons. The one thing I want to make clear to anyone who does look up to me is that they should be whoever they want to be and not worry what other people are doing. Just do what you want to do.” Cher, 19, also said she doesn’t like it people don’t stay true to themselves and try to dress like others. She told TOTP magazine: “Nowadays I think vanity is the craziest thing ever. Everyone’s struggling to look like somebody else, but why? It’s tough but you should try and be happy with who you are.” —BangShowbiz


Jolie-Pitt felt ripped off hiloh Jolie-Pitt was reportedly devastated to receive an “educational” game from the Tooth Fairy instead of money. The sixyear-old daughter of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie was excited when one of her teeth fell out after her brothers Maddox, 10, and nineyear-old Pax, told her to expect cash from the Tooth Fairy for leaving her incisor under her pillow - but the celebrity couple gave her a copy of the kids’ version of Trivial Pursuit instead. A family friend told the National Enquirer magazine: “Shiloh can be quite the traditionalist when it comes to some things, including the Tooth Fairy. “Her brothers Maddox and Pax got her all worked up after she lost a tooth and left it under her pillow. They told her to expect a big wad of cash. “When Shiloh woke up, the tooth was gone but there was no money and she was fuming. She felt she had been ripped off.” Shiloh - who also has siblings Zahara, seven, and threeyear-old twins, Vivienne and Knox then asked if she could get the tooth back to sell it for a better deal, but Angelina refused and put the experience down to being an important life lesson for the youngster. She added: “Shiloh asked her folks if she could get her tooth back from the fairy so she could shop it around and get a better deal. “In the end, Angie sat Shiloh down and explained that Tooth Fairy gifts are non-negotiable and that sometimes life can be disappointing,but there’s always a next time.”



MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


This photograph taken on February 20, 2012, shows members of local rock band “White Fire”, 34-year-old guitarist Kenan Laishram (Left), 32-year-old drummer Elangbam Kumar (Center), 33-year-old bassist Akoi Konjengbam (second right) and 31-year-old vocalist Alvina Gonson (Right), during a musical jam session in a practice room in Imphal, the capital of the north eastern Indian state of Manipur. —AFP photos


M o v i e s

This photograph taken on February 21, 2012, shows 49-year-old Jianngam Kamei, a popular local music director playing his guitar in a room in Imphal, the capital of the north eastern Indian state of Manipur.

This photograph taken on February 21, 2012, shows 49-year-old Jianngam Kamei, a popular local music director playing his guitar as his girlfriend looks on.

Remote Indian state becomes rock music hub n the far north-east of India, cut off from the rest of the country except via a narrow land bridge, perhaps the only way to make yourself heard is loud, really loud, rock music. For White Fire’s drummer Elangbam Kumar, that explains why their cover version of the Guns N’Roses song “Welcome to the Jungle” has become an anthem for the band and a big hit with their fans in the remote state of Manipur. The state, which is 1,000 miles (1,700 kilometres) from the capital New Delhi, borders on Myanmar and has struggled for decades with separatist violence, a society divided among competing tribes and grinding poverty. It is also an unlikely hub for rock and heavy metal music, boasting a burgeoning festival scene and local stars who have defied social and cultural boundaries to pursue their music. “All my pain and angst found an outlet in this genre of music. It is the attitude and the lyrics which are the biggest draw for us,” 32-year-old Kumar, his tattooed biceps bulging out of a tight T-shirt, told AFP. Kumar first started playing music at college in the city of Bangalore, where he watched MTV and hung out with students from across India who were into the “head-banging” style of the West. “There is something raw, rebellious and pure about rock. You can express yourself freely,” he explains, adjusting drums in his makeshift practice room decorated with posters of US heavy metal bands Coal Chamber and Slipknot. “Life here is so frustrating with all the restrictions on us. The entire system makes me angry. The army can stop you on any pretext, unemployment is so high, and we lag behind other states in every way.” Kumar’s passion reflects the feelings of many young Manipuris, who often leave to go to bigger cities for higher education and jobs but then tend to drift back to their home state. For


them, rock music is a statement against India’s mainstream culture which seems alien and imposed by national authorities. The backstreets of the state capital Imphal are packed with small recording studios and music shops. Many Manipuris feel that the concept of being “of India” in any meaningful sense is one they find difficult to entertain with a sense of isolation

south east Asia over the border into India from Myanmar, known as Burma before 1989. “Back in the early 1980s, the gateway to the world lay to the east,” remembers Vivek Konsam, who runs Riverboat, an event-management company in Imphal. “Secondhand copies of The Rolling Stone magazine, a few tapes of boot-legged concert videos and pirated audio cassettes made their way in through

Photo shows two Indian musicians walking towards the entrance of a music school in Imphal.

that is not just geographical, but also ethnic, linguistic, economic and political. Such alienation is common in a number of the “Seven Sisters”-the group of northeastern states encircled by four other countries and connected to the rest of India by a sliver of land that arches over Bangladesh. * “Music is in our blood”The earliest rock influences arrived in Manipur via Thailand and the rest of

Myanmar,” he says. Youngsters, often unemployed and idle, easily related to the hard-hitting lyrics and ear-splitting sounds. “It struck an instant chord with them and that got passed on to the next generation. Music is in our blood now,” says Konsam, who has converted an outhouse of his bungalow into a smart session space available to rent. Konsam has been organising rock

ernments in Manipur-the Indian government and the rebels. We are caught in between,” said the 30-yearold, whose talent and blonde good looks have made her a local star, defying cultural barriers. “There are a lot of restrictions on women here. People don’t appreciate women stepping out of their homes and mingling with the opposite sex. Singing rock is not considered lady-like,” she said. “It is not

can’t stop me.” She began by performing for close friends and family. Word soon spread and she was invited by schools and colleges to perform for their functions. Then, in 2006, she was asked by rebels to give a performance at their jungle hideout. “I was scared at first but decided to go. I took my mom with me. The rebels loved my performances, they danced with guns in

Photo shows Indian musicians engaged in a recording session at a music studio in Imphal.

Photo shows 31-year-old musician and vocalist with local rock band “White Fire” Alvina Gonson posing for a photograph in Imphal.

safe for women to hang around alone after dusk.” Manipur’s situation is complicated by the fact that myriad rebel groups are largely formed on tribal or ethnic lines with rival agendas that regularly erupt into bloody internecine disputes. Gonson, who was brought up by her single mother and writes and composes her own songs in English, says she refuses to fear anyone. “I can stop them but they

their hands and kept asking for more. “No rebel group has tried to harm me ever since,” said Gonson, adding that she also performs for soldiers in army barracks.“I understand the feelings of both sides,” she said. “I pray for eternal peace for my motherland.” —AFP

festivals in Imphal and has seen their popularity grow with each edition. “When we started out a couple of years ago, there were just two or three local bands. Now that number has swelled to about 20. Attendance at these concerts has also been growing to several hundred,” he says. But it is not easy in a city like Imphal, which closes down by 7:00 pm every evening and has just a handful of cin-

emas showing old Manipuri films due to threats by separatist rebels to attack screenings of Bollywood movies. * “They danced with guns in their hands”Alvina Gonson, a tribal Christian and one of the rock pioneers of the state, said she had to fight against officialdom to get her singing career on track. “There are two parallel gov-

‘Middle of Nowhere’ finds love in South-Central Los Angeles riter-director Ava DuVernay stands outside a well-maintained Spanish mission-style duplex in SouthCentral Los Angeles, home to the heroine of her story, a hardworking nurse who works the night shift and struggles to maintain a relationship with a husband serving a prison sentence. “When people think South-Central or Compton, it’s all ‘Boyz n the Hood,’” said DuVernay, referring to the 1991 saga directed by John Singleton. “It’s never a house like this. It becomes an assumption that people who live in these communities don’t care about their home, don’t work as hard for them and don’t own their homes. That’s one of the reasons why I chose this area. It reminded me of the house I grew up in.” DuVernay and her small crew spent a week last summer filming in the quiet, wellkept neighborhood on East 91st Street for her film, “Middle of Nowhere.” The critically acclaimed movie won DuVernay the best director award in the US drama category at this year’s Sundance Film Festival the first for an African-American woman. “Middle of Nowhere” is an independently produced film set for a theatrical release in October. Shot over 19 days last June, DuVernay’s drama takes place entirely in communities of Los Angeles that aren’t usually frequented by Hollywood filmmakers. The crew filmed in Compton, Inglewood, a federal correctional facility in Victorville, Leimert Park and East Los Angeles, as well as various areas of SouthCentral. “It was definitely a new experience for some of the communities we were shooting in,” said DuVernay, 39, who was born in Long Beach and raised in Compton. “I could take a camera crew anywhere in the Mid-Wilshire district and everyone is pretty (film) savvy. You come home and you see a notice on your door and you know what’s going on. Here, it’s like, ‘There’s a notice on my door. What’s that for?’ So there was a bit of a learning curve.” But DuVernay said she had no doubt about


US singer Kelly Clarkson performs during the Pop Music Festival 2012 at Arena Anhembi in Sao Paulo, Brazil, yesterday. —AFP

DJ super group Swedish House Mafia to call it quits wedish House Mafia, a massively popular DJ group, said on their website that they would call it quits after an upcoming tour. “Today we want to share with you, that the tour we are about to go on will be our last,” the Swedish trio, who began performing together in 2008, wrote on their official website late Saturday. “We want to thank every single one of you that came with us on this journey. We came, we raved, we loved,” they added. The trio, Axwell (Axel Christofer Hedfors), Steve Angello (Steven Angello Josefsson Fragogiannis) and Sebastian Ingrosso, last year became the first ever electronic dance act to play at Madison Square Garden, and sold out the legendary New York arena in a matter of minutes. The three Swedes are set to kick off their final tour next month and said their next-to-last show would be held on home turf, in Stockholm, on November 24. “The final leg of this journey will be announced in August,” they said. The trio did not explain why they were bringing their massive success to an end, but Swedish daily Expressen cited sources saying they all wanted to spend more time with their families. “All three in the band have children, and several weddings are lined up,” the paper reported. —AFP


where to film the movie, an atypical love story starring newcomer Emayatzy Corinealdi, Omari Hardwick (“For Colored Girls” and “The Guardian”) and David Oyelowo (“The Help” and “The Last King of Scotland”). “So often we see films that are about us that are not authentic to where we live and

“Collateral.” Inspired by working with prominent filmmakers Michael Mann, Clint Eastwood and Steven Spielberg, DuVernay made her directorial debut in 2008 with the hip hop documentary “This is the Life.” “Middle of Nowhere” is her second feature film, following the 2011 indie movie “I Will Follow.”

DuVernay is distributing the movie through her company AFFRM with Beverly Hillsbased Participant Media, which cofinanced “The Help.” One of the biggest logistical challenges during filming was working around the overhead noise. The neighborhood on East 91st Street is in the flight path of planes landing at Los Angeles

Motion picture director Ava DuVernay visits the neighborhood in South Central Los Angeles, California. who we are,” said DuVernay, who now lives in Sherman Oaks. At the same time, she said, the goal was to make subtle use of the locations so they wouldn’t detract from the story. “I was interested in setting this production in the community without waving my hand and saying, ‘Hey, we’re in the ‘hood.’” A graduate of University of California, Los Angeles, DuVernay learned the business by working as a film marketer and entertainment industry publicist, promoting such movies as “The Help” and

DuVernay began writing the script a decade ago, drawing from her experiences growing up in Compton and Inglewood. “The idea of looking at the victims of incarceration, the mothers, sisters and daughters really came out of knowing women who were going through it,” she said. “Unfortunately, in black and brown communities, it’s always present.” “Middle of Nowhere,” which carries a budget of less than half a million dollars, was financed by private equity investors.

International Airport. “When the city planners were putting together their plans (for LAX), they made sure that the flight path went over South-Central and not Beverly Hills,” DuVernay said. “We had a flight schedule, so we knew when the planes were coming.” —MCT

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012


Men’s Milan F A S H I O N

fashion week


Models display creations as part of Salvatore Ferragamo Spring-Summer 2013 Menswear collection yesterday during the Men’s fashion week in Milan. —AFP

Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen launch UK high street brand


Karl Lagerfeld to launch a one-off beauty line T

he Chanel designer has teamed up with Japanese beauty giant Shu Uemure to create a range of cosmetics, entitled Karl Lagerfeld for Shu Uemura. While specific details on the range have not yet been revealed, president of Karl Lagerfeld Pier Paolo Righi told WWD the products will reflect the designer’s “iconic, ironic style”. Karl - who has used Shu Uemura cosmetics to hand-color his fashion sketches for over two decades - is in charge of the collection’s color selection and packaging

and has already photographed an accompanying campaign. Meanwhile, Karl has been immortalized in wax his native Germany’s oldest waxwork museum, Panoptikum Hamburg. The model took almost a year to create and features an uncanny resemblance to the eccentric designer, featuring his white hair tied in a neat ponytail, his trademark dark glasses, fingerless gloves and slim tailoring. The waxwork - which was created by a team of sculptors - was officially unveiled last week. —Bang Showbiz

ary-Kate and Ashley Olsen are launching a high street clothing brand. The fashion designer twins - who gained initial fame as child TV stars before branching out into fashion - have previously had success with their The Row label and their Elizabeth and James contemporary collection, and are now launching a collection with Stylemint in the UK. The collection debuted in the US 12 months ago, and has already attracted celebrity fans including Rachel Bilson, Chloe Moretz and Dakota Fanning. The range is aimed at making fashion affordable, with most items, such as tops, dresses and skirts costing under £20. The twins were earlier this month named Council of Fashion Deisgners of America (CFDA)’s Womenswear Designer of the Year for The Row. The pair were also recently thrilled when their Supergo range of sneakers designed with Steve Madden sold out. Ashley said: “When we first met with Steve Madden, who we’ve collaborated with for a long time, I was wearing my old, beat-up Supergas and he said, ‘Oh I’ve been wanting to buy that company,’ and I said, ‘Well, you know if you do, please think of us.’ “Now our styles for The Row have sold out in a matter of hours when they first came online, and we’re thrilled, we really are.” Mary-Kate and Ashley are not the only celebrities to team with Stylemint, as singer Cheryl Cole previously launched a shoe range through the site. —Bang Showbiz

MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

lifestyle F A S H I O N

Models display creations as part of Versace Spring-Summer 2013 Menswear collection yesterday during the Men’s fashion week in Milan. — AFP/AP photos

The Versace man puts up good fight for next

summer D

onatella Versace has always put up a good fashion fight. For next summer she outfits a man facing today’s tough world with clothes fit for an ancient Roman arena. “The new gladiators are the young. I would like to see them fighting for a goal,” she told reporters ahead of her Saturday night show, which closed the first day of menswear preview showings in Milan for summer 2013. To underline her point, the designer opened the show with a bare-chested model sporting a gilded warrior belt, wrestling trunks and high-laced centurion sandals fashioned in contemporary sneaker fabric. Throughout the show, Versace came back to the gladiator theme, decorating T-shirts and tunics with gilded embroidery, pairing the centurion sandal with evening wear and offering the Roman-inspired boxer robe as a lightweight overcoat. When she wasn’t in the combat arena, Versace drew inspiration from the Memphis Group - the 1980s furniture movement which opted for a colourful style in contrast to conventional home furnishings. She used famous graphic prints to liven up classic suits as well as summer shirts and tote bags. Noting that the Italian group rebelled against the then prevailing minimalism, the flashy designer quipped: “Who better than me to give the movement a new fashion twist?” —AP

Italian fashion designer Donatella Versace waves as she receives applause from the audience, on the runway.

Remote Indian state becomes rock music hub


MONDAY, JUNE 25, 2012

A Palestinian stone thrower, masked in a kaffiyeh to conceal his identity, stretches a sling shot.

Two Palestinian stone throwers pose for a portrait.

A Palestinian stone thrower poses for a portrait wearing a gas mask. Three Palestinian stone throwers pose for a portrait. A Palestinian stone thrower wrapped in a Palestinian flag.

Palestinians display weapons of


In this Monday, June 11, 2012 photo, a Palestinian stone thrower holding a sling shot and masked in a t-shirt fashioned as kaffiyeh to conceal his identity, poses for a portrait, in the West Bank village of Bilin, near Ramallah. The stone thrower is one of seven men who agreed to pose for a series of twelve portraits. — AP photos


A Palestinian stone thrower, carrying stones at his hands.

ne clutched stones behind his back, another extended a sling shot. A third man appeared wrapped in a Palestinian flag. All were masked. The seven Palestinians gathered in a home in the West Bank village of Bilin displayed their improvised weapons of protest as Pulitzer Prize-winning AP photographer Oded Balilty snapped their portraits against a black backdrop. One muscled young man hoisted a tire like those burned in hastily thrown-up roadblocks. Another covered his face with a plastic bag like those worn by protesters for protection against tear gas. A third wore a gas mask. All concealed their identities with checkered kaffiyehs, black masks or, in one case, a balaclava printed with a Palestinian flag and the words “Popular Resistance” in Arabic. The images provide a rare look at the Palestinian stone throwers normally seen in the streets in action against Israeli soldiers. While they are viewed as symbols of resistance and even heroes by many Palestinians, stones can kill, and the Israeli army notes that hundreds of soldiers have been injured by Palestinian stone throwers. Over the years, many stone throwers also have been wounded or killed in fighting with Israeli troops. —AP

Elvis Presley’s crypt pulled from auction block


lvis Presley’s crypt has left the auction block. Celebrity auctioneer Darren Julien said Friday that his company has agreed not to sell the crypt after fans worldwide demanded that it be kept as a shrine to his memory. Julien’s Auctions announced in May that it would sell the empty tomb at the Forest Hill Cemetery in Memphis, Tenn., at its “Music Icons” auction yesterday. Julien said the company won’t sell the crypt “until Forest Hills finds a plan that best suits the interests of the fans while respecting and preserving the memory of Elvis Presley.” Presley was interred there alongside his mother, Gladys, after he died Aug 16, 1977. Two months later, they were reburied at his Graceland home. The original crypt has remained empty ever since. — AP

In this picture taken yesterday, members of Gnaoua group Maalem Hamid Kasri perform in Essaouira at the start of the Gnaoua World Music Festival. The annual festival provides an opportunity for Gnaoua musicians to perform to international audiences and to play with foreign musicians. —AFP

Singer Elvis Presley’s Crypt in the Forest Hill Cemetery. — AP

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